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December 27 2019 By virtueonline The Whiff of Creation

And while the censer later swung helped mask the odor, I wondered whether the fragrance also shielded our eyes from his hurts.

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November 25 2019 By virtueonline LATE HAVE I LOVED YOU - Aurelius Augustine

"He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him, nothing in his appearance that we should desire him. He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows, and familiar with suffering. Like one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not" (Isaiah 53:2b-3).

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June 21 2019 By virtueonline TRUST: FINDING THE BALANCE

So... I can trust no one... but does that lead me to live in fear and hiding? Must I become a hermit or constantly live with attitude of self-defense? Not at all. This is because there is one Person that I can completely trust, and that is our triune God.

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April 20 2019 By dvirtue EASTER OCTAVE, DAY SIX (Good Friday): "Was Ever Grief Like Mine?

I am going to bracket "The Sacrifice," with two other poems by Herbert that bear on the theme of the day. The first is titled "The Agony." Herbert was highly educated in the Greek and Latin classics and was elected Orator of Cambridge University, a post he gave up in order to enter the parish ministry where he served in the village of Bemerton, outside Salisbury.

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April 18 2019 By dvirtue EASTER OCTAVE, DAY FIVE (Maundy Thursday): "Father, Forgive Them"

Forgiveness of sins has been partnered with repentance and baptism from the days of John the Baptist. On Easter night, the Risen Lord breathed on the apostles and promised: "Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you withhold forgiveness from any, it is withheld" (John 20:22b-23).

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April 13 2019 By dvirtue EASTER OCTAVE: DAY ONE


By Stephen Noll
April 12, 2019


Note: I preached this Palm Sunday 2001 sermon at Makerere University in Kampala shortly after we arrived in Uganda. The text is Luke 19:28-40.

The Palm Sunday Procession

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April 13 2019 By dvirtue Render Unto Caesar

But as bad as I may have it, nothing compares to the indignity which Mary and Joseph endured, traveling 90 miles in a late term pregnancy to be enrolled (taxed in the King James), or the burden which first century Jews bore paying taxes to a foreign empire, all so that some semblance of peace could be imposed on them.

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January 15 2019 By dvirtue Three Things That Bring On Spiritual Attacks

The demons of darkness are opposed to the gospel of Jesus Christ and will do anything in their power to prevent people from being saved. They've gone so far as to have their own ministers (2 Cor 11:4), but they will do anything they can to make you lose your testimony or not share your faith.

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Jesus teaches us to ask for the simple basic things of life -- food, forgiveness, guidance, deliverance from evil. It expresses our dependence. We depend upon God our creator for each breath and for each day's food. But such a request offends our pride, our longing for self-sufficiency, our hubris. Swinburne expressed this attitude when he wrote: "Glory to Man in the highest, for Man is the Master of things."

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October 31 2018 By dvirtue ALL SAINTS' DAY MEDITATION

Where have they gone? When our loved ones depart on a journey we are curious as to their destination. Our minds imagine what it must be like to travel to exotic places. We plan trips. We find joy in anticipating them. St. John is given a vision of the faithful departed.

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