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Attempts At Honesty Blog
Attempts at Honesty seeks to build up the church of Jesus Christ through exploration of how the Bible speaks to the issues of the day.
2023-12-06 09:00
Commentators are nearly unanimously agree that Chapter 12 is a turning point in the Letter to the Romans by the Apostle Paul. In the first 11 chapters, Paul lays down foundational teachi… Read More
2023-12-04 09:00
The phrase, “And the LORD spoke to Moses . . .” is repeated often in the book of Leviticus. That phrase introduces each new revelation from God to the nation of Israel. There… Read More
2023-12-01 09:00
This post is a continuation of focus on Philippians 4:8 in which Paul gives us a strategy for managing our thoughts and channeling them in a positive direction. The verse reads: “F… Read More
2023-11-27 09:00
I think that everyone who has made it through middle school has faced some form of rejection. The feelings of not fitting in and the constant pressure to conform to some undefined standard a… Read More
2023-11-24 14:35
What would the world look like if we took James seriously and worked hard at putting this command into practice? “My dear brothers and sisters, understand this: Everyone should be… Read More
2023-11-18 20:13
“Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we… Read More
2023-11-04 13:08
“Speak and act as those who are to be judged by the law of freedom. For judment is without mercy to the one who has not shown mercy. Mercy triumphs over judgment.” James 2:13-13… Read More
2023-10-01 12:00
I recently read or listened my way through Psalm 119 and found many of the verses particularly encouraging. As a result, I thought it would be good to slow down and meditate on this psalm. T… Read More
2023-09-20 13:32
In America, we like leaders who are bold, outspoken, and visionary (whatever that means). Come election time, we love to see candidates who can hold their own in debates even if they are bra… Read More
2023-06-29 12:47
I have heard it said that at any given moment, a person is in a period of suffering, has just come out of a period of suffering, or will soon be entering a period of suffering. As Christ… Read More
2023-05-28 21:39
“When I feel self-righteous, it means I’m afraid. It’s a way to puff up and protect myself when I’m afraid of being wrong, making someone angry, or getting blamed.&r&helli…Read More
2023-04-21 09:00
When Moses returned to Egypt to announce God’s plan for removing Israel from the yoke of slavery, his message was welcomed by the leaders of Israel as recorded in Exodus 4. “… Read More
2023-04-13 09:00
This post is a continuation of focus on Philippians 4:8 in which Paul gives us a strategy for managing our thoughts and channeling them in a positive direction. The verse reads: “F… Read More
2023-04-12 09:00
We live in an age where we can only consume a small fraction of the information that is available to us. We are bombarded by announcements of things we should be concerned about along with a… Read More
2023-04-11 09:00
This morning I listened to the story in Exodus 3 of Moses encountering the burning bush. As I listened to it, the thought came to me that life as a Christian would be so much easier if Go… Read More
2023-04-10 09:00
Theologians categorize the attributes of God into two categories. The categories are communicable and incommunicable. Communicable attributes are those which God has passed on to humans. The… Read More
2023-04-09 09:00
A short note today to wish everyone a Happy Easter in 2023. The resurrection of Jesus Christ proves that Evil will not win and that anything is possible with God. Blessings to you toda… Read More
To Be Seen By Others.
2023-04-08 12:00
“They do all their deeds to be seen by others” Matthew 23:5a, ESV Years ago, I attended a large church that occupied one corner of an intersection of two major roads. The sta… Read More
2023-04-06 12:00
When Joseph and his brothers returned to Egypt from burying their father in Canaan, this interaction took place: “When Joseph’s brothers saw that their father was dead, they… Read More
2023-04-05 12:00
Last month, as I was sitting on the balcony of a cruise ship, a large cloud passed between the ship and the sun, causing me to wish for the cloud to pass and the warmth to return. It was chi… Read More
2023-04-03 14:00
For those in the church that feel that Christians are being marginalized by our culture, I offer the following prayer that I read in Psalm 80 this morning: “Give ear, O Shepherd of… Read More
2023-04-03 00:15
There are situations in life where circumstances are both painful and beyond our control. One way of surviving during those times is to refuse to engage with the circumstance which is like d… Read More
2023-02-06 00:51
I have heard it said that people can be divided into three groups: Those who are in a trial Those who have come out of a trial Those who are going into a trial As I write this, I am… Read More
2023-02-04 19:55
I was recently asked about my calling and where I see myself with regard to Christian ministry. In thinking about how to respond to this question, it comes to me that whatever the answer… Read More
2023-01-30 13:22
My assumption is that everyone has difficult people in their lives. We have people with whom we must interact for one reason or another, but much of that interaction is unpleasant or drainin… Read More
2023-01-17 03:25
One of the things that I struggle with in church is the pressure that we feel to put on the churchy version of game face when we come on Sunday. If you’ve been in the church at all you… Read More
O Come, All Ye Faithful
2022-12-20 14:01
As I write this post five days before Christmas Day, I am reminded that we fall into two broad categories as we draw close to the holiday. In the first are those who are excited and look… Read More
No Stumbling Blocks
2022-12-01 03:34
“Therefore let us not pass judgment on one another any longer, but rather decide never to put a stumbling block or hindrance in the way of a brother.” Romans 14:13, ESV In a… Read More
2022-09-11 16:42
For a long time, I have liked Johnny Cash’s music. “A Boy Named Sue” was a particular favorite. I liked it because it talked of a boy that was maladjusted and who overc… Read More
Can’t Go Back To Egypt
2022-08-13 23:50
This morning I read Numbers 13-14 which records the story of the spies that were sent into Canaan charged with reporting back to Moses the state of things in that land. The spies came bac… Read More
2022-08-09 12:00
As a follow-up to yesterday’s post, I want to offer up some lyrics from a song by Randy Thompson. The song is titled Lord Take Me. I was listening to this song after writing the pos… Read More
2022-08-08 22:34
Paul gives a command in Philippians which says: “do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to… Read More
2022-07-29 15:12
I have heard it said from a few pulpits (and I’ve said it myself) that the longest measurable distance known to man is the 18 inches between the head and the heart. The point being tha… Read More
2022-05-22 15:57
A friend of mine who is a pastor sometimes says that he has no problem thinking that God has included him as part of the group plan, but he does have a hard time connecting with the thought… Read More
2022-05-18 01:21
While it is always dangerous to judge the heart of someone else, we are called to exercise wisdom in determining who we spend time with. I was reminded of this when I read this verse in Jere… Read More
2022-05-02 02:00
In his book Center Church, Timothy Keller compares the ideas of faithfulness and fruitfulness in ministry. Those who emphasize faithfulness, point to the accuracy of their teaching and t… Read More
2022-01-19 03:08
The third of the Ten Commandments says this: “You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain, for the LORD will not hold him guiltless who takes his name in vain.”Ex… Read More
2021-11-15 10:00
I recently had an encounter with a bully. He did not try to steal my lunch money, but he did use threats in an attempt to get me to validate his inappropriate behavior. The threats came beca… Read More
2021-11-12 10:00
“This sainthood is one of the great benefits of being a recipient of God’s grace. It also reflects a responsibility to act like one who has received this calling.”Darrell B… Read More
2021-11-11 10:00
When he threw the merchants and money changers out of the temple, Jesus said, “My house shall be called a house of prayer for all the nations’? But you have made it a den of r… Read More
2021-11-10 10:00
In reading his book Changes that Heal, I ran across this statement by Henry Cloud: “Our failures do not surprise [God]. If they surprise us, it is only because we have too high an o… Read More
2021-11-09 10:00
These verses are on my mind as I write this post: “In my distress I called to the Lord, and he answered me. Deliver me, O Lord, from lying lips, from a deceitful tongue.”Psalm… Read More
Welcome To The Club
2021-11-08 10:00
“Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. I came not to call the righteous, but sinners.”Mark 2:17 (ESV) If there is one thing that should disti… Read More
Beware The Leaven
2021-11-06 09:00
In my Bible reading, I read this verse and wanted to dig deeper to understand the meaning of the verse. Jesus said to them, “Watch and beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and Sad… Read More
Love And Fear
2021-11-04 14:07
There are times when a verse with which I am very familiar takes on a new meaning, or more accurately, I feel like I understand it on a deeper level. I experienced this with something that t… Read More
2021-11-03 08:53
A few minutes ago I had an “AHA” moment, and it had nothing to do with sparkling water. I literally woke up with a revelatory thought and it has to do with misunderstanding a ver… Read More
2021-10-19 03:31
One of the things I dislike about the American church is our tendency to sweep issues under the rug. Rather than deal with problems with honest integrity, we too often hide and cover the… Read More
Clinging To The Rope
2021-10-17 12:13
In looking at commentaries on 1 Peter, I read this: “Every real Christian feels that he is surrounded by dangers, and that he is in himself full of weakness; there cannot theref… Read More
On Misplaced Priorities
2021-10-17 01:07
One of the most often memorized verses in Scripture is Matthew 6:33 which reads: But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.Matthew… Read More
Edwards On The True Work Of God
2021-10-07 13:17
I have written more than a few posts which catalog how much of the church has become unhelpful to those who are pursuing true spiritual growth. While it is easy to point to things that are w… Read More
On Giving Offense
2021-09-11 11:39
“Then the disciples came and said to him, “Do you know that the Pharisees were offended when they heard this saying?Matthew 15:12 (ESV) I recently received a copy of a new stu… Read More
A Good Reminder
2021-07-26 09:00
Two things that I know we need to be cautious about doing are pulling verses out of context and being overconfident in our ability to interpret prophetic statements. I’ve always bee… Read More
2021-07-24 12:12
A vast majority of pastors genuinely care for the people they serve. They give sacrificially of their time and resources to provide that care. I applaud them and am grateful for their contin… Read More
2021-06-25 00:58
Even a casual observer of church history should be able to notice that the church (speaking of the universal church, not a particular sect or denomination) has gone through ups and downs ove… Read More
Putting First Things First
2021-06-20 11:09
I have been struggling to understand why I am frustrated with 21st Century “Woke” Christianity. After all, who is not for justice? Who thinks that racism is a good idea? Why t… Read More
Learning From Our Mistakes
2021-06-06 12:39
Earlier this week in the Scripture Union daily devotional, the story of Ananias and Sapphira in Acts 5, was the scripture reading for the day. In the commentary section of the devotional, th… Read More
Listen For The Whisper
2021-06-01 09:00
Not long ago I read the story of Elijah following his great victory over the prophets of Baal in 1 Kings. The author of 1 Kings records this: At that moment, the Lord passed by. A great a… Read More
2021-05-31 01:17
Lately, I have run into a number of Christians who have dropped out of the habit of regular church attendance. Most of them have done so as a result of COVID-19 and churches being closed for… Read More
2021-05-16 01:52
I’ve seen an increased level of frustration with churches as I talk to people. This is partly due to COVID and the disruption as a result of the pandemic. But it seems that the pandemi… Read More
2021-04-12 19:47
I have a pear tree, an apple tree, and a cherry tree in my yard. If they were not producing fruit, I could go out and buy a bunch of wax apples, cherries and pears and hang them on the trees… Read More
2021-04-04 20:52
It has been nearly two whole months since I’ve posted. I hope that this note finds you well and I also hope that you have been encouraged by your celebration of the resurrection of Jes… Read More
2021-02-10 10:00
One thing that I have noticed in those who are pushing for what they call progress, is that they are usually tolerant of anything new and intolerant of anyone who questions their new idea. F… Read More
2021-02-07 11:13
According to Merriam-Webster, a hero is “a person admired for achievements and noble qualities” or “one who shows great courage.” During the COVID-19 crisis, those… Read More
2021-02-05 14:00
When you make a vow to God, don’t delay fulfilling it, because he does not delight in fools. Fulfill what you vow. Better that you do not vow than that you vow and not fulfill it. Do n… Read More
2021-02-03 12:52
This morning, I was thinking about the need for churches to have shepherds rather than leaders. I’ve noticed that in big churches, there is a man or a small group of men that have… Read More
2021-02-01 01:20
I will leave a meek and humble people among you, and they will take refuge in the name of the Lord.Zephaniah 3:12 (CSB) The question that church leaders need to ask themselves and their e… Read More
2021-01-24 12:14
This morning I read this: “Shall I acquit the man with wicked scales and with a bag of deceitful weights?”Micah 6:11, ESV What is significant in reading this is that my min… Read More
2021-01-20 10:00
A good friend recently gave me a copy of The Rise and Triumph of the Modern Self by Carl R. Trueman. In the introduction, Trueman put words to something that I have thought for a while when… Read More
2021-01-18 10:00
Scripture is very clear on the tendency of each of us to go wrong if left unchecked. We need to be constantly aware of our propensity for self-deception. This is especially true of church le… Read More
2021-01-15 10:00
Recently I read this: “The right to believe anything does not mean that anything anyone believes is right. The former is freedom of conscience and must always be respected unconditi… Read More
2021-01-13 10:00
Well, that’s not exactly how Jesus said it. His actual words were: “I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But… Read More
2021-01-11 10:00
I assume that every believer has at one time experienced the sentiment found in the first two verses of Psalm 22: “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me? Why are you so far from… Read More
2021-01-09 16:54
Call me simplistic, but I think that when we talk about church culture, we seem to have gotten off track somehow. For me it boils down to two choices. Either we have a church culture cent… Read More
2021-01-08 16:33
I read in Proverbs: “for the devious person is an abomination to the Lord, but the upright are in his confidence.” Proverbs 3:32, ESV When churches experience division in t… Read More
2021-01-03 18:22
As you might guess from my previous post, I have been in need of some encouragement. While some aspects of my life have gone very well, and I am grateful for God’s blessing on me and m… Read More
2021-01-02 13:57
Ideas always have consequences. Bad ideas always have negative consequence. The bad idea I have in mind this morning is the thought that it is up to us to reinvent the church to make i… Read More
2020-12-24 13:12
It is Christmas Eve as I write this post. I am hoping that all who subscribe to Attempts at Honesty are well in the midst of the COVID-19 crisis. While I suspect that the crisis has been… Read More
2020-12-22 12:17
Politicians are famous for telling us what we want to hear, not what we need to hear. Few politicians get elected on a platform promising austerity and hardship. We want the best things and… Read More
2020-11-07 20:13
I probably sound a bit like a scratched record that skips and gets stuck in the middle of a song. But I keep running across passages in Scripture that challenge the way that I have experienc… Read More
A Little Niebuhr To Give Perspective
2020-11-01 23:58
As I am writing this, the most acrimonious presidential election season in my lifetime is about to come to a close. To hear the supporters of each candidate, life as we know it will end if t… Read More
Leaving A Healthy Legacy
2020-10-26 08:50
The very nature of parenting demands that parents strive to prepare their children for life on their own. The same is true of leaders in general and spiritual leaders in particular. Spiri… Read More
2020-10-25 09:00
Yesterday’s post was a prayer from the Psalms asking God for revival or renewal. That prayer begs the question, “what does that look like?” The very next Psalm provides… Read More
2020-10-22 22:43
This morning I read the opening verses of 1 Corinthians 2 where Paul makes this statement: And I, when I came to you, brothers, did not come proclaiming to you the testimony of God with l… Read More
Rethinking Church
2020-09-05 18:09
I am becoming increasingly dubious about the goal of having a large church with a multi-million dollar facility and large, professional staff. I’m still waiting for a really good exper… Read More
Good Advice In Turbulent Times
2020-08-08 20:39
So far in 2020, we have experienced a pandemic, natural disasters, violent protests, a widening left-right political gap, and greatly increased unemployment which have all caused uncertainty… Read More
Cancel Culture In The Church
2020-08-03 23:51
I recently became aware of the term “cancel culture.” The term is new to me but the idea behind it is not. I have experienced this, and unfortunately, I have experienced this in… Read More
Black, White, And Grey
2020-08-02 11:24
All the way back in the Garden of Eden, the Tempter began his seduction of Eve with the question, “Did God really say . . .” We, as humans, have succumbed to infinite variatio… Read More
2020-07-21 01:51
I wonder if the Apostle Paul were alive today if he would rewrite Galatians 3:3 to say: Are you so foolish? Having begun by the Spirit, are you now being perfected by pursuit of social ju… Read More
2020-06-23 15:14
Until a few months ago, I had not heard the term “virtue-signaling.” There doesn’t seem to be a universally accepted definition of the term, but I understand it to be a ref… Read More
2020-06-22 15:14
In my previous post, I quoted part of 1 John 4:18 which says, “There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves punishment, and the one who fears is… Read More
Be Courageous
2020-06-21 00:15
So much has happened in the last few months, that I really haven’t known how to respond. I have felt like a boxer that is taking body blow after body blow to the point where I’m… Read More
You Have Left Your First Love
2020-05-14 02:15
The haunting words of the title of this post are taken from Revelation 2:4 in the middle of Jesus’ message to the Church in Ephesus. The full verse says, But I have this a… Read More
2020-05-11 10:17
This morning I read a proverb which says, When arrogance comes, disgrace follows,but with humility comes wisdom.Proverbs 11:2 (CSB) It is 2020, a presidential election year in the Unit… Read More
2020-05-04 09:00
In Nehemiah 9, there is recorded a long prayer in which a brief history of the Nation of Israel is recorded. In the prayer, we can see, in Israel, the pattern of distress-repentance-renewal… Read More
2020-05-02 11:40
This is a guest post by my daughter, Abby McIntyre, who is a recent graduate of Grand Canyon University. This post was originally published on the website for Living Streams Church where she… Read More
Leading With Repentance
2020-04-25 09:00
I’ve been reading the opening chapters of Matthew over the last few days. In them, the message of John the Baptist is summarized by the short phrase, “repent for the kingdom of h… Read More
Ending Well
2020-04-23 10:00
In 2 Chronicles I recently read an overview of the reign of Solomon as King of Israel. The author of Chronicles did an excellent job of describing the splendor of Solomon’s reign. T… Read More
2020-04-17 21:34
I read this paragraph by Martyn Lloyd-Jones which was originally published in 1953. I couldn’t help but think that what Lloyd-Jones has written speaks to the current crisis caused by C… Read More

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