Entries by David Yoder

To the Church at Sardis

The fifth church Jesus addresses, of the seven, is Sardis.  This one is different.  Jesus’ tone is different.  It is different because Jesus doesn’t commend them for anything, as in, anything. Their problem is two-fold.  One, they have a reputation on which they rely.  Rather than focusing on actual health, they look to others’ opinions […]

To the Church at Thyatira

Thyatira was a city that buffered two larger regions.  It was an outpost city, a military garrison of whatever region was prominent.  It was also home to numerous guilds and trade groups.  More importantly though, it was the place where Christians gathered to follow God. Our Lord introduces himself as the judge and the implementer […]

To the Church at Pergamum

The city of Pergamum was the most distinguished city of Asia.  So said Pliny the Younger, an ancient historian.  The city was wealthy and very focused in their allegiance to the Roman Emperor. To this church, Jesus introduces himself as the one who has the two-edged sword.  This is an offensive weapon designed for more […]

Battles worth fighting

Here is a letter I wrote for our congregation. _________________________________ Last week I noticed several wasp nests outside the church entry door.  I do not remember seeing them form, all of a sudden, there they were.  Of all my pastoral duties, I count killing wasps as one of the more fun “obligations.” I needed to […]

To the Church at Smyrna

The church at Smyrna did not receive any rebukes, only commendation and counsel. Jesus introduces himself to this church as the first and the last, the one who passed through death into life. Both of these titles are fitting in light of Smyrna’s difficult situation.  Jesus can speak to all of us from the standpoint […]

To the Church at Ephesus

The church at Ephesus was the leading church of Asia Minor.  It was the leading city of Rome in Asia Minor.  Paul spent two years there, Timothy pastored there, and eventually the Apostle John would live there.  It was a blessed city.  It was also a thoroughfare of the ancient world. Jesus’ words to this […]

Summer Vacation 2016

  Our family went on a vacation in July 2016. It was incredible. We put nine persons in our 2004 Chevy Suburban. A lady from our fellowship, Julie Hall, went with us. We put two luggage carriers on top of the vehicle and used a hitch rack to haul our gear. We drove over 5,000 […]

Entrust the Father with your Shameless Audacity

Jesus tells us a story.  There is a catch, though.  You are in the story.  Here is your situation.  You have company come late at night and you do not have adequate provision.  It is midnight but… your only option is to go to a friend’s house and ask him for supplies.  Swallowing your pride, you […]

First Things

We come now to another incident in Scripture, the story of Martha and Mary.  It is a classic in every sense of the word. Here is how it went down.  Jesus comes to Bethany and he stays at Martha and Mary’s house.  It is a big deal!  Martha seems to be the leader of the […]

Condemnation and Rejoicing

Condemnation and judgment are words that make us uncomfortable.  Why?  They speak of finality, lack of dialogue, and generally exploit our deficiencies.  However, it does not fall to believers to engage in the work of condemnation and judgment.  This is the work of Christ.  Jesus is very explicit in our passage that judgment falls upon […]