SERIES:  Big BUTs:  Salvation

This is the first post of a new series.  I remember the very first time I attended a certain megachurch, one of the most famous in the nation and indeed world.  And I LOVED LOVED LOVED E-V-E-R-Y-T-H-I-N-G about it.  About that service.  About that church.  The wonderful, accordant singing by the congregation, and the opera-caliber, Broadway-worthy music rendered by the orchestra and choir and especially when the offering was being taken.  I loved the prayer from the pulpit.  And the second prayer.  And the third.  And the fourth.  I had never and have never seen so much prayer in a single service!  Wonderful.  I loved the friendly, family-like fellowship before and after.  But what I loved most of all was the preaching.  Pure Bible.  100% Word.  Solely Scripture.  While I had been blessed by Bible teaching literally my entire life (literally… my father felt called to be a pastor and quit his Fortune 500 management position to attend seminary soon after I was born, a total toddler) I had never heard preaching like THAT!  Wow.  Double-wow.  The pastor of that megachurch preached from Philippians 2 and the ENTIRE 90-minute (but seemed more like nine) message didn’t deal with a single verse, no no no, it dealt with a single WORD in a single verse.  It was something else and while the pre-sermon singing and praise and worship were wonderful indeed, it was after hearing that sermon on ONE WORD that I KNEW I had found and was going to LOVE my new church for the year or two I would be living in that area.

So I dedicate this particular series of posts to that profound, pure-hearted, prince of a pastor.  Because if, as noted in a recent post, my old friend Haddon Robinson was “the prince of preachers” then my new friend at the time was definitely “the prince of pastors”, bar none.  Here’s to you, old friend… you’re still going strong even after all these years and I pray we’ll meet again.  In person as in your kind, thoughtful note not too long ago.

Okay, on to the inaugural post of this new series, which I’m (cheekily, er, tongue-in-cheek) calling “Big BUTs” because I’ll be sharing verses where that TINY word makes a WORLD of difference, as you’re about to see with these first three… there will be many more I’m sure which is why I’m making it a series.

  • “Or do you not know that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God?  Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, shall inherit the kingdom of God.  And such were some of you; BUT you were washed, BUT your were sanctified, BUT you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, and in the Spirit of our God.” (1 Corinthians 6:9-11)
  • “For while we were in the flesh, the sinful passions, which were aroused by the Law, were at work in the members of our body to bear fruit for death.  BUT now we have been released from the Law, having died to that by which we were bound, so that we serve in newness of the Spirit and not in oldness of the letter.” (Romans 7:5-6)
  • “For we also once were foolish ourselves, disobedient, deceived, enslaved to various lusts and pleasures, spending our life in malice and envy, hateful, hating one another.  BUT when the kindness of God our Savior and His love for mankind appeared, He saved us…” (Titus 3:3-5a)

Now THAT’S what I call some big BUTs!


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