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GLMX #247: Things That Last Forever

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We live in a world that is temporary. The events of each day remind us that we are living on borrowed time — that at any moment everything we know could come to a screeching halt. Every day, lives are cut short by illness, car accidents, and criminal activity. Each hour serves as a reminder that we ought to be grateful for every breath we take. The Bible says, life is just “a vapor that appeareth for a little while and then passeth away.” Continue Reading…

GLMX #246: Gardner C. Taylor, the Prince of Preachers, was “Surprised by Grace” After a Life-Changing Fatal Car Accident

Gardner C. Taylor

Gardner C. Taylor

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Dr. Gardner C. Taylor, who passed away on Easter Sunday this year, is hailed today as the “dean of American preaching.” But, if Gardner C. Taylor had had his way, he would have never been a preacher at all. According to a Christianity Today feature story, Dr. Taylor was born in 1918 to Reverend Washington and Selina Taylor, and he inherited “Baptist genes” that many assumed would lead him into pastoral ministry. But Taylor said, “I recoiled from the thought of being a preacher. I wanted to go to law school and become a criminal lawyer. My boyhood friends in Louisiana tried to discourage me from that idea, though; at that time, no black person had ever been admitted to the Louisiana bar.” Taylor pursued his goal, and after being admitted to the University of Michigan Law School, he was well on his way to a career in law.

However, shortly before leaving home to go to college, he was involved in a tragic car accident. One night in rural Louisiana, another vehicle suddenly cut across his path. He said, “I tried to avoid them, but I couldn’t.” Both of the passengers in the other car — two white men — died. And the only witnesses to the accident were a white farmer and a white oil refinery worker.

Being a young black man, Gardner Taylor was worried about how everything would turn out. He said, “In that day, for a white person to tell the truth about a black person in that situation was incredible; but those men told the truth. I would not be here today if they had not.” That event was the turning point in his life when he finally decided to accept the call to preach. He said, “I was surprised by God’s grace. I had been brooding about my future for a long time, but that was the defining moment.”

Many have testified to the power of God’s grace in their lives. It was God’s grace that delivered a young Gardner C. Taylor from the possible deep South, Jim Crow devastating consequences of what was already a tragic situation. But more importantly, it was God’s grace that led him to salvation in Jesus Christ and to the calling to preach the Gospel which caused Him to become known as one of the greatest preachers who walked the earth. Even though he was a very humble man who said he “wanted to be remembered as just a preacher”, many call him “the prince of preachers” and “the dean of American preaching.” And it is God’s grace that can deliver you from the even greater consequences of your own sins, faults, and failures, and give you new life to be who God has made you to be and do what God has gifted you to do. Allow me to explain to you what I mean. Continue Reading…

GLMX #245: How to Defy Death

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A recent feature story in the Washington Post states: “For centuries, explorers have searched the world for the fountain of youth. Today’s billionaires believe they can create it, using technology and data.” The story went on to describe how Peter Thiel, the co-founder of PayPal, and Larry Page, the co-founder of Google, met with a molecular biologist and theoretician to discuss how they can use technology to slow down ageing and greatly elongate the human lifespan. The story also reported that Larry Ellison, the founder of Oracle, “has proclaimed his wish to live forever and has donated more than $430 million to anti-aging research.” He told his biographer, “Death has never made any sense to me. How can a person be there and then just vanish, just not be there?”

No doubt, every person who has lived has had questions about death. And nearly everyone has wondered at one time or another how they can extend their life or remain younger longer. Television ads about anti-aging creams and techniques populate the airwaves. People fret over dieting and health issues in an effort to look and feel younger. People have a seemingly natural desire to live longer — even to defy death and live forever. Continue Reading…

GLMX #244: Everything is Done for Us

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During the celebration of Christmas, many people spend time frantically searching for, buying, and wrapping gifts to give to others. During the celebration of Thanksgiving, many turn toward family, food, and fun, and making sure that everyone has a good time. During the celebration of a New Year, we are forced to ponder the past and the future and we strive to do those things that will make our future better than our past.

The celebration of Easter, however, is unique. The reason why millions celebrate this holiday has nothing at all to do with anything we have done or can do for ourselves, for others, or for God. Rather, Easter commemorates what God did for us in sending His Son, Jesus Christ, to die on the cross for our sins, to be buried, and to rise from the dead. Jesus’ resurrection from the dead was a once-in-history event that had never happened before and has never happened since. The resurrection of Jesus Christ is the singular event in history that stands above all others in scope or importance, and each of us alive today benefit from the event commemorated by the celebration of Easter. We do not have to do anything to make Easter happen. Easter has happened to us and for us.

What are the main benefits that we gain from the events that are commemorated on Easter. Continue Reading…

GLMX #243: “We Never Really Die”

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There is a thrilling chase scene in the movie “Lucy”, in which the main character, also named Lucy, has commandeered a police car and is driving it through Paris at high speed with a frightened police officer in the passenger seat. At one point, the police officer says to Lucy, “I’d rather be late than dead.” And, Lucy, replies, “We never really die.”

Although “Lucy” is a science fiction film, and many of the scientific claims in the film are questionable, that statement is actually true. We never really die.

Of course, you will face physical death at some point. However, your body is not all there is to your existence. The really real part of you is your soul or your spirit. That part of you will never die. Your soul or spirit is what makes you really alive. When your body falls away, you will still exist. Psalm 22:26 states, “Your heart shall live for ever.”

Perhaps you have heard stories of people who have died in car accidents and were later revived. Many of those people have reported “floating” above the scene of the accident and being able to see their body lying on the ground or on a stretcher with emergency medical personnel trying to revive them. At death, our spirits separate from our bodies. Ecclesiastes 12:7 says that when we die, “Then shall the dust [the body] return to the earth as it was: and the spirit shall return unto God who gave it.”

Our concern, dear friend, ought not to be whether we will live forever — because we will — but WHERE we will live forever. Our souls will end up in one of two places — either in Heaven, a place of eternal happiness, joy, and peace, or Hell, a place of eternal suffering, pain, and remorse. Matthew 25:46 states that some will “go away into everlasting punishment” while others will go “into life eternal.” Fortunately for us, we can decide where we will go to spend eternity. God has placed that ability in our hands. If you want to spend eternity in Heaven, allow me to show you how you can make that decision today. Continue Reading…

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