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Reliable Truth

Reliable Truth

By Richard E Simmons III

Welcome to Reliable Truth with best-selling author Richard E Simmons III. Are you searching for truth in your life? Looking for talks that will get you thinking? Each week Richard talks on topics like how to find happiness in your work, or how to improve your marriage. Listen anytime – on the way to work or over a lunch break – and you should come away feeling challenged and encouraged.
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Currently playing episode

A Personal Reflection On Racism

Reliable TruthAug 31, 2020

Dr. Mark Gignilliat - The Life of David
Oct 01, 202349:34
Homosexuality and its Effect on the Church - Part 2
Sep 22, 202355:01
Homosexuality and Its Effect on the Church - Part 1
Sep 18, 202350:41
Gospel of John Study - Part 8

Gospel of John Study - Part 8

Do you believe Christianity is true? If so, what is the evidence that you’ve built your faith on?

Conversely, have you rejected the existence of God? What is your basis of that decision?
​The famous scientist Francis Collins was an atheist and incredibly well-educated. One day an older woman asked him about his faith.
​​And it just kind of dawned on him. Collins said, “As a scientist, I had always insisted on collecting rigorous data before drawing a conclusion. And yet, in matters of faith, I had never collected any data at all. I had never examined any evidence at all. I realized I didn’t know what I had rejected.”
​​In other words, Collins was saying, "I had rejected God, I had rejected Christianity, but, in reality, I didn’t know what I had rejected. I had never looked at any evidence."

As Francis Collins began to examine the evidence, he was shocked at what he found. Today, he’s a very committed, outspoken Christian and one of the most prominent scientists alive today.

You see, evidence is important.
​​In fact, we should want evidence, because the more evidence you have, the stronger your faith will be, just like if you’re trying a case in a court of law, the more evidence you have as the prosecuting attorney, the better the chances are that you’re going to win.

In this study we finish up John chapter 5.

Sep 07, 202346:13
Gospel of John Study - Part 7
Sep 03, 202346:26
Gospel of John Study - Part 6
Aug 24, 202354:11
Gospel of John Study - Part 5

Gospel of John Study - Part 5

What is the thirst of the soul?

We are in John 4, discussing Jesus' encounter with the Samaritan woman at the well. It is a fascinating conversation.

He’s focusing on the spiritual need in her life and she’s thinking about not having to come to this well to drag water back to her house every day.

The thirst of the soul.

I read an older sermon by Tim Keller, and he talks about the role of water in your body. He says that our body is 50% water, and that if you are deprived of water you will die of thirst and dehydration. It is a terrible way to die.

Thirst is a physical deprivation because you are made of water, and therefore, you crave it, and you need it. In the same way, Jesus uses the term living water, to tell this woman, "Your soul is craving for something that you don’t have and I’m the only one who can give it to you. It comes from Me."

Where are you looking to quench the thirst of your soul?

Aug 20, 202349:18
Gospel of John Study - Part 4
Aug 13, 202354:03
Gospel of John Study - Part 3
Aug 06, 202346:00
Gospel of John Study - Part 2

Gospel of John Study - Part 2

Today we're studying John chapter 2. It’s a quick read, and full of interesting details about Jesus.

He spent 30 years of His life in a small, obscure village called Nazareth. The people in Nazareth didn’t even think much of Him, yet even at age 12, Jesus really had a good grasp of who He was and why He was there. He grew in wisdom and knowledge, and in favor with God and man.

Hebrews 5 tells us that, "although Jesus was Son of God, He learned obedience from the things which He suffered. And having been made perfect, He became to all those who obey Him the source of eternal salvation.”

So, we learn that He suffered, and He learned obedience from all that He suffered. What do we know about His suffering?

Jul 29, 202346:42
Gospel of John Study - Part 1

Gospel of John Study - Part 1

Jul 23, 202347:02
Michael Easley inContext - Reflections on the Existence of God
Jul 16, 202341:57
Paul Walker - I Did Not Come To Condemn But To Save

Paul Walker - I Did Not Come To Condemn But To Save

Today my guest is Paul Walker. We'll be looking at four different people from the gospel of John who represent four types of people: two seekers and two believers.

One seeker is a guy named Nicodemus who seems to have it all together while the other is a woman caught in the midst of adultery who's clearly got her fault lines exposed.

One believer is Thomas, Jesus's disciple who was plagued by doubts and questions. The other is Peter, fired up for Christ but finds that his life actually doesn't square with his faith.

So four people from four different places in life, each of which I would say is looking for the same thing: to be in the inner ring.

Christian apologist C.S. Lewis came to this conclusion, "I believe that in all men's lives at certain periods and in many men's lives, at all periods between infancy and extreme old age, one of the dominant elements is the desire to be inside the local ring and the terror of being left outside the inner ring."

Where have you felt it?

Jul 09, 202354:12
Responding to Life's Disappointments
Jul 02, 202351:01
Dr. Mark Gignilliat - Courage
Jun 23, 202341:17
Jerry Leachman - On Point With Your Family?

Jerry Leachman - On Point With Your Family?

Happy Father's Day!

Jerry Leachman of Leachman Ministries joins us with a message for fathers especially, but also for all men - to help us all focus on the things that matter.

Are there any boundaries when it comes to human sexuality? How do our choices affect others in our lives? As a father, how do my choices affect my wife? My children?

Today's message is about living an upright life - how to be a righteous man. Righteous men are just normal guys, but they’re just not double-minded anymore. They confess their sins. They live with accountability. They want to be part of the solution.

Dads, you can demonstrate to your daughters how women should be treated. Men can model to their sons on how to think about real women, and how real men treat women. Women, even the most godly ones, cannot do that like a man can. Women can nurture. They comfort. They encourage and they’re powerful prayer warriors, but they cannot model for boys and demonstrate to young girls in the way men can.

Train up your child - create a desire in them to live for Christ through your example and through cultivating a loving relationship with your children. It's the most worthy job you could aspire to.

Jerry is a favorite speaker at The Center's events. Along with being an associate Chaplain in The NFL for many years, Jerry has done ministry in Guatemala, Scotland, Russia, Europe and Africa as well as all over the U.S.

He and his wife Holly have been on Young Life Staff and continue to be involved with Young Life here and also internationally.

Jun 19, 202350:49
Why Is The World So Broken?
Jun 11, 202346:14
Being a Healthy Man
Jun 03, 202342:11
How I Survived The 1945 Sinking of the USS Indianapolis

How I Survived The 1945 Sinking of the USS Indianapolis

In honor of Memorial Day, Richard's guest is WWII Marine survivor Edgar Harrell, who shared his heroic survival story at one of our Men's Breakfasts in 2019.

At the time, Sergeant Ed Harrell was the last surviving Marine of the ⁠USS Indianapolis⁠. Two years after speaking at our event, Harrell ⁠passed away⁠ at the age of 96. 

July 30, 1945: After transporting uranium for the atomic bomb that would soon be dropped on Hiroshima, the USS Indianapolis headed unaccompanied toward a small island in the South Pacific. At 12:14 a.m., she was struck by two Japanese torpedoes, rolled over, and sank.

Harrell vividly describes the horrors of being plagued by dehydration, exposure, saline poisoning, and sharks. This is a story of courage, ingenuity, and faith in God's providence in the midst of the greatest catastrophe at sea in the history of the U.S. Navy.

Want to hear more about Ed Harrell’s story? Pick up his book Out of the Depths here.

May 29, 202351:20
Tim Keller - Bible Study on Romans 8:28-30
May 22, 202359:26
Bernhard Langer Shares His Story
May 12, 202348:04
Giving Your Life Away

Giving Your Life Away

Jerry Leachman of Leachman Ministries joins us today with a message calling us to give our lives away.

Jesus said people that give their life away will find their life. You know when you’re giving your life away because it’s impossible to be contentious toward anybody. You have become their servant. You don’t think you’re better than others, and you’re free from the bondage of consumerism.

People that give their life away, Jesus said, shine like lights in the world. He even said in the midst of a crooked and a perverse generation you shall shine like lights in a dark place.

Jerry is a favorite speaker at The Center's events. Along with being an associate Chaplain in The NFL for many years, Jerry has done ministry in Guatemala, Scotland, Russia, Europe and Africa as well as all over the U.S.

He and his wife Holly have been on Young Life Staff and continue to be involved with Young Life here and also internationally.

May 05, 202357:42
Dr. Mark Gignilliat - Hope in the Divine Name
Apr 28, 202346:14
Collin Hansen Book Release - Timothy Keller: His Spiritual and Intellectual Formation
Apr 23, 202350:10
Ezekiel's Vision

Ezekiel's Vision

The prophet Ezekiel in the Bible is a wild ride. I'm not sure how else to describe him. Ezekiel is a remarkable prophet of the Old Testament Exile.

Dr. Mark Gignilliat joins us with a message from the first chapter of Ezekiel.

Hebrews 7:25 tells us that Jesus, " also able to save forever those who come to God through Him, since He always lives to make intercession for them."

Ezekiel chapter 1 paints this incredible scene of Jesus praying for us. The scene moves from the ground up, as we see One like a man surrounded by a rainbow, Who is aflame and aglow with the mysteries of the universe. The cosmos is all around Him.

What is He doing? He is overseeing His creation. He is seeing all things toward their ultimate Redemptive purposes.

He is interceding for you and for me.

John Calvin famously said our Lord Jesus does not sit idly in heaven. He is active in heaven. What is He actively doing? Praying for His people, interceding for them, lifting them up before the throne. Jesus intercedes with His Father with knowledge, having lived in the realm of human suffering Himself.

Be encouraged with this today - Jesus is on His throne; He knows your name, He is praying for you to the Father by the Spirit, and He is reminding His Father that you are His. He has claimed you as His own. That is our only hope in life and in death.

Watch on YouTube

Dr. Mark Gignilliat is professor of divinity at Beeson Divinity School, where he teaches courses in Old Testament and Hebrew, and also serves as theologian in residence at St. Peter's Anglican Church in Birmingham. Dr. Gignilliat is married to Naomi, and they have four children.

Apr 15, 202344:37
Reflections on Easter
Apr 07, 202356:20
The Power of Hope

The Power of Hope

Are you looking for hope in your life today?

In light of the recent, tragic school shooting in Nashville, I'd like to share this message of hope from a Good Friday talk I gave a few years ago. I believe it is pertinent today.

Author and pastor Tim Keller says this, “Hope is the engine that drives your life. And the reason is because how you live your life today is so influenced by how you perceive your future.”

In our vocabulary today, the word "hope" is generally spoken of as a synonym with wishing for something. I wish this would happen. I hope this would happen. Wishing is a vague longing for something we desire, but find unlikely to happen.

The hope that I’m speaking of is a noun and it’s a life-shaping certainty of something that has not happened yet, but you know will happen. That word “hope” is used 85 times in the New Testament. What you’ll see stressed repeatedly is that our relationship with God is the ultimate ground of hope in this life, and that’s what I want to show you today.

We are all hope-based creatures. We can’t live without hope. This is why people who see the future as being utterly hopeless, very sadly pull the plug on their lives. Because, when you look ahead at the future and you don’t like what you see and you see no change is coming, you find yourself feeling this sense of hopelessness. This naturally leads to despair in your present-day life. And so, the way you see the future has such an impact on the way you see your life and the way you live your life today.

Apr 01, 202344:03
Reflections on the Cross

Reflections on the Cross

When you think of God, what is the first thing that comes to your mind? In other words, when you think of the attributes of God, what do you think of?

Here in the south, many of us might describe God as a loving God, a merciful God, that He is a forgiving God and He is an all-powerful God. You see those descriptions in the Bible of who God is. These are descriptions that make us feel good about God and who He is.

The problem is when Easter rolls around we hear a lot of different words. We hear words like sin and the cross and the crucifixion, God’s wrath, and God’s judgment, the sacrifice He made and the spilling of the blood of His Son, Jesus. And for many people, this isn’t really pleasant. It’s kind of like a lot of people feel about Good Friday, they say, I’d just as soon forget about Good Friday and move on to Easter.

But the heart of the Christian faith starts at the cross. In fact, without the cross, the Biblical story of redemption makes no sense.

Today I'd like to share with you a Good Friday message I gave a few years ago, to briefly walk you through the events of Good Friday, and make four important points that I think will be very helpful to you, particularly as you prepare your heart for Easter.

Mar 25, 202348:23
The Pride of Life

The Pride of Life

Today's message might possibly be the most important message I could ever share with Christian men.

Proverbs 16:5 says, "The Lord detests all the proud of heart. Be sure of this: they will not go unpunished." Think about those words. Then James 4:6 tells us, "God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble." The Greek word for opposed there means "to be at war with." Now who in the world wants to be at war with God?

There are two types of pride. The first is what you would call good, like taking pride in your work and striving for excellence in your life. The Bible is talking about the second type of pride, which is arrogance. We can easily see arrogance in the lives of others, but it's so difficult to spot it in our own lives. I have to stop, step back and ask myself, could this be true in my life?

Tim Keller says that pride is the carbon monoxide of sin. Pride silently and slowly kills you without you even knowing it.

If arrogant pride is the utmost evil, and yet we have a hard time seeing it in our own lives, should this concern us? I think the answer is yes. I'd like to share several good applications that you can apply to your own life, starting today. I believe we should be praying every day, "Lord, show me the pride in my life. Help me to see it. Help me to see what is true of my own heart."

Mar 19, 202350:17
Pull-Aside with Jeff Pinkleton

Pull-Aside with Jeff Pinkleton

Today Richard joins Jeff Pinkleton on the Pinkleton Pull-Aside Podcast to discuss Biblical manhood, the existence of God, Alabama football and much more. Special thanks to our brother in the Lord, Bob "Coach Schue" Schuemann, for connecting Richard with Jeff and the good folks at The Gathering!

Jeff Pinkleton is Executive Director of the Gathering of the Miami Valley, where their mission is to connect men to men, and men to God. You can reach Jeff at or find him on Facebook at The Gathering of the Miami Valley.

This episode originally aired on the Pinkleton Pull-Aside Podcast. Click here to listen.

Mar 12, 202345:04
Psalms for the Pilgrim: The Psalms of Ascent

Psalms for the Pilgrim: The Psalms of Ascent

We live in an age of constant distraction. We have to be intentional to find space for reflection, for prayer - to crowd out the noise of existence. Many people are marked by angst, depression and even suicidal thoughts. Where are you looking for hope in your life?

Dr. Mark Gignilliat joins us with a message about Lent and the book of Psalms. Psalm 121:1-2 tells us, "I lift up my eyes to the hills—where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth."

The season of Lent is a gift to us, especially in an age that's marked by distraction. Lent is a gift for reflection, a gift for prayer, and a gift for renewal. It's also a time for us to think about basic questions of our existence:

  • Why am I here? 
  • For what purpose have I been made? 
  • Is life worth living? 
  • What are we heading toward? 
  • What's the purpose for our existence? 

I believe that the Bible is extremely interested in all of those questions.

The Lord has promised that He will not lose us, that He's not going to fall asleep on us. He will keep our souls with that very thing that animates our being and gives us life. He will hold it and he will keep it. In the midst of the busyness and distractions of our lives. I pray that we will remember that our help comes from the Lord. That we will believe that this promise is true, and that it is true for each one of us. 

Watch on YouTube

Recommended devotional for Lent: A Long Obedience in the Same Direction by Eugene Peterson

Dr. Mark Gignilliat is professor of divinity at Beeson Divinity School, where he teaches courses in Old Testament and Hebrew, and also serves as theologian in residence at St. Peter's Anglican Church in Birmingham. Dr. Gignilliat is married to Naomi, and they have four children.

Mar 03, 202348:24
Jerry Leachman - The Remnant

Jerry Leachman - The Remnant

Scripture tells us that God always saves for Himself a remnant. What about you? What about me? Are you part of the remnant? 

Jerry Leachman of Leachman Ministries joins us today with a message calling us to prayer, commitment to Christ and to have a deep, fervent love for our fellow man. Like Ambrose's Band of Brothers, come together and spur each other on to love and good deeds. Be on the "battlefield", share your faith by loving people, caring for people. Be in each other's lives.

We are the Lord's remnant. Instead of praying for God to get you out of hard places, pray that whatever's ahead of you, that God would help you be faithful and persevere to the end.

Jerry is a favorite speaker at The Center's events. Along with being an associate Chaplain in The NFL for many years, Jerry has done ministry in Guatemala, Scotland, Russia, Europe and Africa as well as all over the U.S.

He and his wife Holly have been on Young Life Staff and continue to be involved with Young Life here and also internationally. Watch on YouTube here

Feb 24, 202349:17
Seeking the favor of men or God?
Feb 16, 202347:44
The Psalms: Life in God's Presence
Feb 09, 202345:54
The True Measure of a Man Part 3 - Finding the True Riches of Life

The True Measure of a Man Part 3 - Finding the True Riches of Life

How do we find the true riches of life? In this series of talks we've discussed many fears and pitfalls that men experience - the fear of failure, battling the pressure to perform and 'act like a man.' We compare and compete constantly. This leaves men feeling isolated and alone.

If you think about it, a man's greatest fear should never be the fear of failure, but the fear of actually succeeding at something that doesn't really matter.

Author and coach Joe Ehrmann said, "At the end of our life, we ought to be able to look back over it from our deathbed and know somehow the world is a better place because we lived, we loved, we were other-centered, other-focused."

Every real man should be investing their life in a cause that is bigger than your own individual hopes, dreams and desires. But how do we make the changes necessary to do that?

Today is the last of 3 talks that I gave back in 2009 after the stock market crash. These talks became the foundation of my book The True Measure of a Man, which continues to impact many lives, both men and women.

Learn how to get Chapter 1 of The True Measure of a Man for FREE here.

Feb 02, 202349:42
The True Measure of a Man Part 2 - Battling Fear

The True Measure of a Man Part 2 - Battling Fear

Fear is a very interesting emotion. It's created by one thing: uncertainty over the future, and it operates in the realm of our imagination. It's amazing how we play things out in our minds, and most people don't know what to do with it. Fears end up running wild in their imaginations, particularly when they wake up at two or three o'clock in the morning and their minds start whirling. That's when fear runs rampant, and it cripples our lives in a multitude of ways.

Interestingly, in both the Old and the New Testament, the number one imperative from God to His people is to fear not. Be anxious for nothing. Do not worry. 

So what is it that we fear? Well-known psychologist Larry Crabb says that we all have two basic psychological needs in our lives:

  • The need for security, and
  • The need for significance 

What do I mean by significance? It's the belief that your life makes a difference that will last over time. At the end of our lives, each of us hopes that our life was important in some way. 

Our need for significance creates an incredible fear of failure in us that we carry around - an incredible fear that we're going to fail somehow out in the workplace or in our relationships. 

As you listen to this message, ask yourself these questions: How is God trying to use this in my life? What's He trying to teach me? Maybe for some of us, He's trying to make a spiritual breakthrough in our lives.

Today is the second of 3 talks that I gave back in 2009 after the stock market crash. These talks became the foundation of my book The True Measure of a Man, which continues to impact many lives, both men and women.

Learn how to get Chapter 1 of The True Measure of a Man for FREE here.

Jan 27, 202347:30
The True Measure of a Man, Part 1 - Dealing with Failure and Hardship
Jan 19, 202347:06
The Legacy We Leave Behind

The Legacy We Leave Behind

If there were only room for one thing in your life, what would it be? 

You know, when we're dead and gone, I can promise you this, people will not remember us for the houses we lived in, the cars we drove or what we accomplished in our business or personal lives.

They will primarily remember us for the kind of people we were. Character, wisdom, love, and compassion. And if these qualities are what our lives are about, then we will naturally impact the lives of other people. And in the end, our lives will be known by the impact we have had on other people.

What is my primary loyalty in life - what is at the core of who I am? Is it money? Is it prestige and success? Is it the pleasures of life? There's something that is at the core of each of our lives. If it's not Christ, I want to challenge you to give Him preeminence in your life.

Jan 12, 202349:15
Jerry Leachman - Big Boy Talk

Jerry Leachman - Big Boy Talk

What is the desire of your heart for this new year? 

Jerry Leachman of Leachman Ministries joins us today with a message to fuel your passions for 2023. How to cultivate an inner circle of wise people that can strengthen you and give clarity to your life. Most men don't even have an inner circle. They just have acquaintances. You need a wing man. If you don't have one, then pray for one. If you've got one, then make sure you're getting regular time with him. Go. 

What kind of men are we going to be from here on in? You'd better get in a group. You'd better have a wing man on Omaha beach. 

How in the world did the troops get off of Omaha Beach? They banded themselves into small groups of men. They designated leaders and they got off the beach because they were working together. They realized there were only two kinds of men on the beach - dead men and men who were going to get off the beach. Get with some brothers who love Jesus Christ and are serious. Iron sharpens iron. Your fear will go down. They will buffet evil in your life. They will influence you from doing unwise things, and your personal power and your potential for godliness will increase. Find a wingman.

The last thing is we must hear God and obey Him. In Psalm 81, it says, "My people would not heed my voice. Israel would have none of me, so I gave them over..." There it is. He abandoned them. "I gave them over to their own stubborn heart to walk in their own council. Oh, that my people would listen to me, that Israel would walk in my ways." Maybe you've lost faith. God can turn your life around.

Join Jesus Christ. Put His jersey on and get out on the battlefield with the men. Offer your service to the Lord. Whatever that would mean, He'll tell you, but you've got to be all in now. 

Jerry is a favorite speaker at The Center's events. Along with being an associate Chaplain in The NFL for many years, Jerry has done ministry in Guatemala, Scotland, Russia, Europe and Africa as well as all over the U.S.

He and his wife Holly have been on Young Life Staff and continue to be involved with Young Life here and also internationally.

Jan 05, 202359:55
The Search for Wisdom - Part 4

The Search for Wisdom - Part 4

Happy New Year! What are your goals for 2023? Are there areas in your life that you want to change?

Let's say you play golf, and you decide to go take a golf lesson. The first thing they will do is to film your golf swing. And they do it for one primary reason: to determine what are the flaws in your swing. The only way you're going to get better, the only way you're going to transform your golf game is to recognize your flaws. And here's what's interesting about this - almost every time you take a golf lesson, they point out your flaws. And you are clueless that the flaw exists. We are truly blind to our flaws.

The question is, are we willing to take a good hard look at ourselves? That's a very difficult thing for a lot of men, but I believe self-examination is critical if we truly desire to change course and walk down the path that leads to wisdom.

Jan 02, 202343:26
God's Great Rescue Mission

God's Great Rescue Mission

*RE-AIR EPISODE* Merry Christmas! Today’s podcast is taken a Christmas blog that I originally wrote several years ago. I share one of my favorite stories that illustrates the ultimate reason Jesus came into the world.

I hope that as we enter this Christmas season, and get caught up in the pageantry and celebration of His birth, that we would not forget that God sent His Son into the world to rescue us from the domain of darkness and from the wrath to come.

Dec 26, 202250:25
The Search for Wisdom - Part 3

The Search for Wisdom - Part 3

How does wisdom impact our lives? Well, it impacts the decisions and the choices we make in life. 

Wisdom changes people. It impacts not only what we see, but what we choose. This is of critical importance because our lives end up being the sum of the choices we make as we walk down the path of life.

Your life today is the sum of the choices that you've made over a lifetime.

The way of wisdom is a path, where you become wise by assuming a certain set of daily practices. As you adopt these practices, these disciplines, and do them over and over again, eventually you become wise. Wisdom is not a door, as most of us would hope it is where we can turn a key and find some secret knowledge. Wisdom is a long, patient quest. It does not come quickly.

How must I change my daily practices so that I'm going down a path that leads to a deeper relationship with God? This is the heart of wisdom.

Dec 19, 202234:41
Isaiah: Advent Promises

Isaiah: Advent Promises

Dr. Mark Gignilliat from Beeson Divinity School, joins us today with a special Advent message from the book of Isaiah.

Do you feel overwhelmed by the busyness of the Christmas season? And what about all the chaos of the world? 

Just like the story of Charlie Brown's Christmas, things don't seem to be right in terms of what this season is all about. But let me just encourage you to find, by God's grace, some time for reflection, some space, to think and to pray. To open your heart and your mind to the work of the Lord to draw you back to himself again. Because our ultimate identity is wrapped up in this tension that we live in, namely, we're in the old age, but we're already citizens of a heavenly kingdom.

Advent does two things for us as a season. Advent pushes us back in time, but it also pushes us to the future because just like the prophets, we too live in the in-between times right now. 

We're in the old age, and we're awaiting the new age - but there's an overlap. Some call it the "already" and the "not yet." We're caught in the "already" because we know that Christ has come and brought his kingdom into the world. But we also know that it's "not yet" because that kingdom hasn't been completed yet.

This overlap helps us understand the tensions that we live in as Christians. For example, knowing that Jesus has come, and yet also recognizing that Jesus is absent. We feel the reality of Jesus' absence. We pray during this season of advent, Lord Jesus return again. Advent is a gift to us, to call us into a season of repentance, of reflection and of renewal. 

Dr. Mark Gignilliat is professor of divinity at Beeson Divinity School, where he teaches courses in Old Testament and Hebrew, and also serves as theologian in residence at St. Peter's Anglican Church in Birmingham. Dr. Gignilliat is married to Naomi, and they have four children. Watch video on YouTube here

Dec 12, 202250:17
The Search for Wisdom - Part 2

The Search for Wisdom - Part 2

How do we make wise decisions? It is learned through making mistakes, or is it more than that?

I believe that the more clearly we see the reality of the world, the better equipped we are to deal with the complexities of life. But the more our minds are clouded by falsehood, misperceptions, and illusions, the harder it will be for us to determine correct courses of action and make wise decisions.
Our view of reality is like a map with which to negotiate the terrain of life. If the map is true and accurate, we will generally know where we are. And if we have decided where we want to go, we will generally know how to get there. But if our map is false, if it's inaccurate, we generally will be lost, stumbling in the darkness.
I wonder how many of us are living with false ideas about life - false ideas about reality. I wonder how many of us might have false ideas about God and spiritual reality. One of the things I find when I meet with men is that many have false ideas about God and Christianity.

Proverbs tells us that a key to growing in wisdom is to first realize you're not wise - recognizing that there's so much that I don't know yet. That's where you and I need to be. If you believe that you've "arrived", that you are wiser than everybody else - well, you just stepped back into the darkness.
So a good place to be is to recognize, "I do like wisdom. I am needy." That's a great place to be. In James 4:6, scripture tells us, “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.”

Then Proverbs 3:6a, 7-11 says, "For the Lord gives wisdom... knowledge and understanding. He holds success in store for the upright, He is a shield to those whose walk is blameless, for He guards the course of the just and protects the way of His faithful ones. Then you will understand what is right and just and fair—every good path. For wisdom will enter your heart, and knowledge will be pleasant to your soul. Discretion will protect you, and understanding will guard you."

Dec 04, 202235:42
The Search for Wisdom - Part 1

The Search for Wisdom - Part 1

Imagine that you're at work and, and things aren't going well in your marriage, or you and your wife are going through a dry season. You're invited to go to lunch with an attractive single woman. And you reason to yourself, there's nothing wrong with going to lunch. There's nothing morally wrong with making that decision. 

Several weeks later you're working late on a special project and you're finally finished. All of a sudden the two of you are there at work and you say, well, let's go get a bite to eat. There's nothing wrong with going to dinner. Over dinner, you begin to share the struggles of your marriage. Again, nothing wrong with that, with sharing with somebody what's going on with your marriage. But, we shouldn't be asking, is this right or wrong? We should be asking, "Is this wise?"

Is there anything more important in life that we should be pursuing more than wisdom? As we go through this study, I believe that we will all conclude that wisdom has such great value because of its impact on our wellbeing and on the quality of our lives and our relationships.

Nov 28, 202220:40
The Modern Male Identity Crisis

The Modern Male Identity Crisis

In your eyes, what is a good man? To be caring? Honest? To put others' needs ahead of your own? 

Now, what does it mean to be a real man? Many men would eagerly answer: "a real man takes charge, takes risks." Some might say "a real man walks like a man, talks like a man, and never cries." There's a real disconnect between the description of a good man and of a real man. 

Many men today are confused about what it means to be a man. I believe we have false ideas on what it means to be masculine. In today's podcast I discuss some of the traps men fall into, like the fear of failure or what I call the performance trap. These things steal our joy and weigh us down. And guys, if we fathers don’t know this, what do we teach our sons about manhood?

Who is the most important person in your life?

How would it change you if Jesus were the most important person in your life? I would tell you that it would change you radically, and would set you free from the performance trap and put you on a path to becoming Christlike.

Nov 21, 202245:55
Religious Pluralism

Religious Pluralism

Is there more than one path to God? 

You see, all of the world's religions make certain objective truth claims about the nature of God, about spirituality, and most significantly about what happens to you when you die. Either only one of them is true or none of them are true. To say that two or three of them are true or that all of them are true is absurd. It's logically impossible. In today's episode, I am discussing the real reason that the religious pluralist believes what he believes. 

Who in this life has the spiritual authority to point us to what is true? I contend that Jesus Christ stands head and shoulders above everyone else.

Nov 14, 202241:19
Caring for the Caregivers
Nov 06, 202255:31
Marital Investments: Partnerships built to last!

Marital Investments: Partnerships built to last!

The most important thing that you bring to your marriage relationship, and really to any relationship, is yourself. And the healthier you are individually, the healthier your marriage will be, the healthier your relationships will be. Your character, your humility, your willingness to be transparent, to be honest, to be vulnerable, your ability to love, the wisdom that you attain, will all ultimately determine the quality of your relationships. 

You see, the person you are becoming is most significantly impacted by your relationship with Christ. As men, what do we focus on? We mostly focus on achieving and what we are experiencing through our work, sports, and our activities. Rarely do we stop and think about what God says is most significant. 
But in doing so, we are looking for something from our wives that only God can provide. In his book, Sacred Marriage, author Gary Thomas says,

​​“I believe that much of the dissatisfaction we experience in marriage comes from expecting too much from it. We want to get the largest portion of our life’s fulfillment from our relationship with our wives. And they cannot provide it.”

The deeper we go in our relationship with Christ, the greater the transformation that will take place in our lives. And consequently, the healthier we will be.
What kind of man or woman are you becoming?

Oct 31, 202229:54
Song of Songs
Oct 22, 202256:23