Do the Clothes Make the Christian?

By: Keith Olbricht

This past Sunday coming home from CYC, I wore my customary khakis and a polo.  When we got back here to the building at about 5:00, I realized I was not going to have time to go home and change before our evening worship here.  It would be highly unusual for me to preach without a jacket and tie, but I wasn’t too worried about it on this occasion.  However, one of our young people made a comment to the effect that dressed as I was, I looked more beachy than preachy.  I know she was not criticizing, but based on her comment, I managed to find time to change into a dress shirt and tie before time for worship. Continue reading “Do the Clothes Make the Christian?”

Um, That’s MY Charger

By: Keith Olbricht

As it usually seems to go, I thought of the perfect illustration for a lesson…a few days after I taught it. I had taught from Matthew 25 and the parable of the ten virgins about the need for preparedness, and a couple of days later, the modern equivalent of the oil-in-the-lamps hit me. I was driving the bus to Pigeon Forge to CYC, and at some point along the way we stopped at a rest area. (I won’t insult your intelligence by telling you why. Lots of teenagers drinking lots of soda.) As we got ready to get back on the road (again), I was torn between amusement and annoyance to find that someone had taken the liberty of plugging their phone into my charger. MY charger. That I had plugged into the outlet on the dash. That I had the foresight to bring. “Foolish kids,” I thought to myself, “they should have known they were going to need a charger.” Continue reading “Um, That’s MY Charger”

The Beauty of the Cross

By: Keith Olbricht

I ran out of time before I could finish my lesson Wednesday night, so I want to put it into writing here and now.

The cross today is one of the most cherished emblems in the world—to those who believe.  But in the 1st Century, it was an object of scorn and shame.  As Jesus began introducing this idea to His disciples, it is no surprise that they were not immediately accepting.  Reading the three times that Jesus tells this to His disciples in Matthew (16:21-23; 17:22-23; and 20:17-19), you will notice some similarities and differences. Continue reading “The Beauty of the Cross”

Could I Be…Royalty?

It seems that there is much fascination in the world today with genealogies.  The Jews began it, Joseph Smith rejuvenated it, and the modern online businesses are exploiting it.  Now, for only $79, you can send your spit in a jar to a company who will supposedly tell you your heritage from your DNA.   Based on the results, people have occasionally claimed royal lineage from their ancestry!  Can you imagine?  You might be royalty and not even know it! Continue reading “Could I Be…Royalty?”

Word of the Week: Awesome

WOW #1 (aka, “Word of the Week”)

By: Keith Olbricht

“Awesome”

So…I want to introduce a new segment to our blogging called “WOW” or Word of the Week.  I have been called a “grammar nerd” by some, and I suppose there might be a small degree of truth to that, but the reason I so like words is…they are how we communicate!  Every thought we have, everything we see, hear, taste, touch, or smell has a word associated with it.  (One day I will give you my greatest philosophical argument against instrumental music based on this concept.)  WE HAVE TO HAVE WORDS!!!!!!  You may be what is called a “visual learner” where you associate concepts with images, but even then, you have to have words to describe those images.  Anyway, I think you get the point.  What I want to do here is to take some words from the Bible, break them down a bit, and see how they apply to us today.

I chose to open this blog segment with the word “awesome.”  If you are an OKJ person (Old King James) and you look in a concordance such as Strong’s, you won’t even find this word in your Bible.  But the newer translations have included it, and included it a lot (for example, x38 in the NKJV and x32 in the ESV).  But what does it mean? Continue reading “Word of the Week: Awesome”

Blog – Take Your Medicine

Take Your Medicine

By: Keith Olbricht

Have you ever received instructions like this: Take 2 pills twice a day for 10 days? You get that bottle of medicine and you are relieved to know that you hold what you need in your hand, and that in 10 short days you should be all better. You take the medicine on day one, morning and evening. Days 2 and 3, likewise. Then about Day 4 you begin to feel a little better. Day 5, you take it in the morning, but forget that evening. By Day 7 you feel like new, but the bottle of medicine has now gone untouched for 2 days. Ten pills remain. That is no big deal, is it? You feel better, and that is all that matters. Isn’t it? If your illness should return in a few days, who are going to blame: the doctor, the medicine, the pharmacist, or the patient (a.k.a., you)? In the days of Jeremiah, God dealt pretty harshly with His people. Continue reading “Blog – Take Your Medicine”

Blog – Go Ahead and Shake It

Go Ahead and Shake It

By: Keith Olbricht

 

No, it is not time for Christmas just yet, but don’t you love seeing a beautifully wrapped package with your name on it?  What is inside?  How much does it weigh?  Does it rattle?  Is there a corner of the wrapping that might be a little loose?  Can you get a little glimpse, any hint of what it might be?

OK, so you may be past that point in your life.  You see a package there with your name on it, but if you feel any excitement at all you suppress it.  You tell yourself that it is probably just socks or underwear and there is no need to get excited.  As a matter of fact, in order to avoid any display or outward show of enthusiasm, you may go in the opposite direction and seemingly ignore the very existence of the package.  That is what mature, dignified adults do.  Right?

Continue reading “Blog – Go Ahead and Shake It”

Blog – Some Though On Las Vegas

Some Thoughts On Las Vegas

By: Keith Olbricht

What do a deranged shooter and an unemployed television business executive have in common? Neither demonstrated a value for human life.

The Las Vegas shooting is a tragedy of epic proportions. The absolute disregard for humanity is astounding and mind boggling. Authorities will be searching for weeks and months to come in an effort to unravel the motivations behind the event. At the end of it all, though, the motivations will not matter. Whatever they find, there cannot be justification for his actions. The ends do not justify the means. They never have. They never will. Surely this is something that we can all agree on. No matter what pain this man may have felt, no matter what ghosts may have haunted his past, his present, or his future, the disregard for human life is without merit, without excuse, and without justification.

Continue reading “Blog – Some Though On Las Vegas”