Jeremy Sarber On Life & Scripture
Jeremy Sarber

Gird your waist with the belt of truth

How can we defend ourselves against the devil’s relentless attacks since he is so clever, subtle, and disguised? The apostle Paul answers, “Take up the whole armor of God.”

The conclusion to James is this

Series: Double-Mindedness

As it happens, the cure for a fractured heart is anything but law-keeping. According to James, the only cure is the gospel—that is, humbly receiving the grace of God.

The future is uncertain, and wealth can’t save us

Series: Double-Mindedness

We can readily see how James deals with two distinct issues in James 4:13-5:6, but pride and materialism tie them together.

Submit to God, you double-minded sinner

Series: Double-Mindedness

We may consider ourselves God-pleasing people, but James says, “I see pride, double-mindedness, and a desperate need for repentance.” Thankfully, God gives greater grace.

We are what we say

Series: Double-Mindedness

If anything reveals our double-mindedness and fractured hearts, it is our tongues, speech, and the words we speak. There is a direct connection between the heart and the mouth.

Justification from Paul’s faith to James’s works

Series: Double-Mindedness

The greatest danger is knowing about God, accepting Christ and his gospel intellectually, and identifying as a Christian without it transforming our lives.

We’re looking for the wrong kind of glory in people

Series: Double-Mindedness

Whether it’s a celebrity, winning the championship game, or the breathtaking view at the top of a mountain, our hearts are attracted to glory for better or worse.

Combating double-mindedness with the word of truth

Series: Double-Mindedness

James is trying to show us how to mend our divided hearts and lead us toward singular devotion to God. Where does that start? It starts with the word of God.

Christian, do you want to be made whole?

Series: Double-Mindedness

James’s overarching theme is that we become whole and people of integrity. However, James does not instruct us to rely on ourselves. He continually points us to God.

The cure for the Christian’s divided heart

Series: Double-Mindedness

James may not be the most systematic author of the Bible, but there is a central theme connecting all of his epistle’s various teachings—double-mindedness.

Following Jesus requires enduring to the end

Series: Following Jesus

Jesus said salvation is the end for his disciples, but what about everything before the end? He said it would require endurance.

Following Jesus requires suffering well

Series: Following Jesus

Suffering is inevitable. Following Jesus requires trusting in God’s sovereign plan and looking forward to the day when God will make all things new and remove suffering forever.

Following Jesus requires good stewardship

Series: Following Jesus

What should we do to be good stewards of our money and possessions? How do we honor and glorify God with our wealth? How do we follow Jesus with what we own?

Following Jesus requires work ethic

Series: Following Jesus

How are we supposed to feel about our occupations? How do Jesus and the gospel shape our perspective and approach to work?

Following Jesus requires making disciples

Series: Following Jesus

To follow Jesus is to be a fisher of men. It requires we love people enough to warn them about the wrath to come and share with them the good news of salvation in Jesus Christ.

Following Jesus requires God’s will

Series: Following Jesus

How do we know the Lord’s will for us? How can we follow Jesus if we don’t know what he wants for us? What does the Bible tell us about his will?

Following Jesus requires growth

Series: Following Jesus

Following Christ is a process of growth. It’s spiritual growth, growth in our understanding, growth in our conviction, growth in our maturity, and growth in wisdom.

Writing personal letters

Perhaps the personal, handwritten letter is a small gesture. Still, I believe it has profound potential in a fast-moving world where most of our communication is shallow.

Unplugging the television

Unplugging our TVs altogether is an extreme measure, but following Christ is all about extremes. “If anyone wants to follow after me,” Jesus said, “let him deny himself.”

Ignoring our smartphones

The church can turn the world upside down, assuming the next text message can wait. All we need, at least to start, are a few thoughtful, intentional tweaks to our daily routines.

The world should see our fruit

When a tree bears fruit, you can see it. You can reach out and take hold of it. You can taste it. When people look at us Christians, they should see the fruit of the Spirit.

Following Jesus requires holiness

Series: Following Jesus

Come as you are, but don’t expect to stay that way. Justification explains how we are declared holy. Sanctification explains how we become holy.

Calvinism is about much more than predestination

If we want to understand John Calvin and his impact on the world, we need to realize that Calvinism encompasses far more than his soteriology.

Following Jesus requires the Holy Spirit

Series: Following Jesus

Following his death and ascension into heaven, the disciples had to learn to follow Christ when Christ wasn’t with them. The same is true for us.

Following Jesus requires prayer

Series: Following Jesus

On the one hand, prayer is one of the easiest things we can do. We simply speak to God our Father. On the other hand, prayer can be a struggle for us. Why?

Following Jesus requires commitment to the church

Series: Following Jesus

The New Testament assumes every believer will want to join the family of God in the local church. In Scripture, the idea of an “individual” Christian is entirely foreign.

Following Jesus requires the Bible

Series: Following Jesus

According to Christ, all of Scripture is about Christ. If we want to follow Jesus, we need the Bible.

Following Jesus requires a life of faith

Series: Following Jesus

For the next three months, I will attempt to answer the question, “How do we follow Jesus?” For some, it’s a refresher course. For others, these lessons will be foundational.

God offered Cain a second chance

I’m never surprised by the depths of man’s depravity. Instead, I am perpetually stunned by God’s patience with us.

God is speaking to us from the sky

We’ve lost the Hebrews’ sense of awe and wonder. Do we even notice the sky and stars anymore? I wish we would because God is speaking to us through them.

John Owen: The greatest among the Puritan theologians

Despite not knowing much about John Owen’s personal life and the difficulties of reading his work, he is still massively influential to this day.

Chronological Bible reading plan with OT/NT overlap

Once again, I’ve created an annual Bible reading plan. This plan follows the entire Bible in chronological order, with overlap between the Old and New Testaments.

The peace we seek is found in the Prince of Peace

We may grasp for peace and not find it because we’ve failed to identify the source of our most significant strife.

Do you believe in God?

What are the odds of nothing creating something? What are the odds of non-life creating life? What are the odds of simple organisms randomly mutating into complex beings?

Yes, heaven will be a familiar place

We do ourselves a tragic disservice by remaining ignorant regarding our eternal state. Our excitement for paradise is often tinged by fear of the unknown.

Heaven will be a new earth

Assuming we skip ahead to the end, Scripture foretells a day when heaven comes down to a newly created (or recreated) earth.

Do we take the words of Scripture for granted?

Lack of reading is not the only way we take Scripture for granted. Have we ever stopped to appreciate that God inspired men to write his words in the first place?

The best-selling book that emerged from a prison cell

For good reason, Bunyan’s allegory has proven to be the most widely read and distributed book in English outside the Bible. I pray future generations won’t overlook it.

A theological framework for genuine Christianity

If we have any interest in planting our feet on a solid foundation of biblical truth, we could hardly do better than to study and understand the Five Solas.

Pastors, preach the Word and feed the sheep

When a pastor talks about Scripture more than expounding it, vital doctrines go missing. Soon enough, the church starves to death as its pastor spoon-feeds milk.

In the beginning God

Everything began with God, so we can’t correctly understand anything apart from him. Our study of any subject is vain unless we commit ourselves to theology, the study of God.

Yes, theology matters

The modern deist, not to mention all of Western society, borrows from the Christian Bible and worldview while ignoring the inconvenient parts and rejecting the source.

Is life absurdly meaningless?

Modern atheists reason we no longer need our silly, superstitious belief in God, but I suggest we glance at the fine print before reaching a conclusion.

Our modern ‘public town square’ isn’t ideal

If I’m to have any faith in humanity, I have to believe we’ll eventually look back on these last twenty years with confusion and a measure of disgust.

Believer, you belong in the local church

If a sinner shows little interest in belonging to the church, is he or she truly saved? While it may be theoretically possible, the Bible never permits us to make that assumption.

We have a glaring problem

We are increasingly unwilling to confront the one inevitability of life. We will die. We all know it. Yet, we don’t permit ourselves to mention it.

Moral Therapeutic Deism is the broad road

Moral Therapeutic Deism is a convenient yet damnable belief system. It lulls the masses into a false sense of security.

Can it matter what happens to you now?

The antidote to trouble is always the same. When negative feelings begin whispering in our ears, we should drown them out with shouts of truth.

Marriage is a profound friendship

My wife and I have been married for twelve years. Though I could speak endlessly about our marriage’s practical utility, this covenant relationship has proven even greater.

Let the widows wail

The Christian’s impulse is to sweep the pain and groanings of life in this fallen world under the rug. Sometimes, people need time and space to lament.

Jesus is the King of kings

What kind of king allows himself to be mocked, nailed to a cross, and crucified? The correct answer is the King of kings.

What is the book of Hebrews all about?

The author of Hebrews acknowledges the terrible difficulties which Jewish Christians faced, but throughout the letter, he shows them the alternative.

The wrong and right way to handle suffering

When Christians suffer in this life, we often compare our trials to those of others. This, however, is not a biblical coping mechanism.

Liberal theology promotes a gross perversion of love

On the one hand, I shouldn’t be surprised to hear a professing Christian condone sins such as abortion or homosexuality in the name of “love thy neighbor.”

Our pastors will give an account to God

If nothing else, I know better than to take pastors for granted. They bear the weight of our souls as they strive to lead the church faithfully.

I’m the grateful steward of a ’23 Ford Maverick (for now)

We should be thankful for God’s material gifts, stewarding them well, but we must hold on to them loosely. Ultimately, they can’t last.

Brothers, we have better things to think about

If it’s true, worthy of honor, right, morally sound, and beautiful, Paul insists we fix our minds on it. He should know the advantages of this practice.

A few more potential problems with ‘modern media’

Like Christ sending his disciples out into a hostile world, we need to know the risks before we can effectively use these technologies for good.

Music in worship is overrated

I like music as much as the next guy, but the contemporary church gives it more weight than our ancient counterpart.

The challenge of every father

Faithfully and consistently discipline and instruct, yet do not exasperate your children. That’s the challenge of every father.

Why does the world hate Christianity?

Why is the Western world growing increasingly hostile toward Christianity? To answer this question, let’s think back to the 1st and 2nd centuries.

‘Modern media’ is potentially dangerous and unnecessary

The devil is real and wants to deceive and destroy. Mass media and the World Wide Web are ideal tools for quickly deceiving as many people as possible.

What’s the point of marriage?

Quoting the oldest text in the Bible on the subject, Paul shows that marriage has substantial meaning. Without it, we would have every reason to ask, “What’s the point?”

When a crackhead became a real father

I could have listened to Al share his folksy wisdom for hours. The lessons he’s learned as a father were among my favorites, but his conversion story was the best.

Repentance has two parts

When sinners repent, they don’t turn away from sin to face nothing on the other side. They simultaneously reject sin while also seeking God’s mercy.

Faith without repentance?

While I believe faith and repentance are distinguishable in Scripture, they are also inseparable.

From what did Christ die to save us?

I fear many claim Christ as their Savior without an answer to this question. Perhaps they know enough to reply, “Hell, of course,” without fully grasping what hell is.

Yes, there is something we must do to be saved

The apostle Paul reminds the Ephesian elders that he testified both to Jews and to Greeks of repentance toward God and of faith in our Lord Jesus Christ.

The genius of William Tyndale (and the King James translators)

Whenever I’m confronted by those who claim the King James Version is the only true Word of God in English—it happens more than you would think—William Tyndale comes to mind.

The mission field is decorated with rainbow flags

Though we may wonder why God allows humanity’s depravity to utterly consume a nation, the Lord is patient toward us, not wishing that any should perish.

Learning to glorify God in whatever

Whether prince, pauper, or something in between, whatever our lots, God has taught us to say, “It is well with my soul.”

Christians, we’re called to be peacemakers

We can’t altogether avoid conflict, but Christians are called to try. We should be the last people stirring up trouble inside or outside the church.

The paradox of inner strength despite physical decline

Paul’s body is dying, but his heart and soul have never been more alive. How can this be?

Finding contentment from vacation to vocation

Contentment seems easy to achieve when lying on a warm, sunny beach three thousand miles removed from the daily grind.

The apostle Paul’s unwavering endurance through suffering

Despite perpetual adversity, the apostle Paul claims to have immunity from despair. He says, “We do not lose heart.”

The certainty of suffering and death

Just as sparks from a campfire inevitably rise, trouble will soon find us all. No one is exempt. Trouble is inevitable.

A poignant glimpse into a family’s life and loss

The joy I gleaned from Doris’s family photo was overwhelmed by a sense of melancholy. The sweetness was necessarily mingled with bitterness.

A Reformed Baptist’s perspective on life and Scripture

This is “On Life & Scripture,” casual yet compelling talk about God, salvation, and ourselves. All glory be to Christ.