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Articles written by Paster Earl Herr


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  • Thought for the Week

    Paster Earl Herr|Jun 13, 2024

    You likely have seen a sign such as my title displayed at a doorway or gate. There is a purpose for this. Only certain people are allowed to pass through the entrance. All others are kept out. You must have a proof of who you are and that you are one of those allowed entrance before you can enter. To try to gain entrance without the proper I.D. means you will be barred from entry. When you display your identification, the guard checks it against his list. If your identification matches what is...

  • Thought for the Week

    Paster Earl Herr|Jun 6, 2024

    Fidel Castro, Adolph Hitler, Joseph Stalin. What do these men have in common? Each was a leader. We may not have liked them or their leadership, but people followed them. Like it or not, people need leaders. Scripture talks about people being like sheep and needing a shepherd. You may already be tired of hearing political rhetoric. This ‘Thought’ won’t be that. Israel had some great leaders. Styles were different but to some degree, many leaders were successful. Moses may have been the great...

  • Thought for the Week

    Paster Earl Herr|Apr 25, 2024

    As we travel through life, it is a good thing to remember the "T" things that are involved. Hopefully they can help us to keep on the straight and narrow way and not to be greatly discouraged as we move on from the cradle to the grave. Life is a "T"est. We see this over and over but still we can easily forget. Of course not many children want to hear the words: "We will be having a test today." But the reason for tests is to see what we know or how we'll handle situations of life. There is a...

  • Passion Flashes

    Paster Earl Herr|Mar 28, 2024

    We have looked at ‘Passion Week’ through Scripture. Hopefully you found this helpful. Now, I would like us to look at just a few of the flashes of passion Jesus had during this time frame. Jesus displayed great compassion as He (a) lamented, weeping over the future destruction of Jerusalem and saying He would have gathered them safely as a hen gathers her chicks but they refused. He displayed (b) righteous indignation while clearing the Temple, saying “My Father’s House shall be called a ‘hous...

  • The Tithe

    Paster Earl Herr|Feb 8, 2024

    I am feeling led to look at ‘The Tithe’ in this week’s Thought’. Basically The Tithe is giving to God, one tenth of grain, vegetables, fruit, and domesticated animals produced that year. There are other associated words, i.e. offerings, gifts, sacrifices, but I just plan to look at ‘tithe’. The original tithe seems to be voluntary. Abraham, celebrates his victory in a war. He dedicates one tenth of the spoils of war to Melchizedek, known as the priest of God, and King of Salem. The second I note...

  • Thought for the Week

    Paster Earl Herr|Jan 4, 2024

    Sometimes we think we are starting over with a “clean slate” at the beginning of a New Year. It may seem like we have found the “delete” button on our computer and are ready to push it so we can start fresh. That can be a great feeling but it just is not so. The bills we amassed in the past year are still to be paid. Health issues must still be dealt with. Any apologies we need to make we must still make. In other words, “We cannot start over.” But that does not mean we have no opportuniti...

  • Thought for the Week

    Paster Earl Herr|Nov 2, 2023

    Inspiration for this ‘Thought’ comes from John Glick. Lots of things look good just as they are. But in order to be useful, some things must be crushed or broken. Many of those things are food items. We sometimes purchase “whole grain cereal.” But, it is not really whole grain. The grain has been ground into flour and then further processed in order to create the cereal. You would be disappointed if you opened the box and found whole-kernel-grains of wheat, rice, oats, or corn. Of course...

  • Thought for the Week

    Paster Earl Herr|Oct 5, 2023

    As I think on “things we lose,” I am not talking about car keys or the remote control but more important things. I am thinking about spiritual blessings. Things like “peace,” “contentment,” and a host of other things. In the hymn “What a Friend We Have in Jesus”, one line proposes, “O, what peace we often forfeit, O, what needless pain we bear”, and the reason given is, “All because we do not carry everything to God in prayer.” Scripture invites us to come apart from the world and rest/abide in...

  • Thought for the Week

    Paster Earl Herr|Aug 24, 2023

    It is true that our children did not have basic “terrible anythings” but they had another childhood disease: “Asking Questions.” They asked dozens...hundreds, perhaps even...thousands. I think the chief one was “Why?” You know you can ask “Why? about facts, stories, incidents, activities, almost everything. You can even ask “Why? why is a question?” My wife was not very sympathetic either. She said, “It’s your own fault. They ask a simple question and you preach ‘em a sermon.” Probably, “gui...

  • Thought for the Week

    Paster Earl Herr|Aug 10, 2023

    When Haman cast the lot (Pur) I expect he was frustrated it would be a whole year until his vengeance was satisfied. But it is certainly a good thing from Mordecai’s perspective. He has almost nine months to get things fixed up for the Jews to at least defend themselves. Two things need to happen: The message must get into the hands of everyone. Those who hear this new decree must believe it is true. Getting it out works this way. The messengers were well mounted. They had horses (for flat p...

  • Thought for the Week

    Paster Earl Herr|Jul 13, 2023

    The time of fasting and I believe prayer is over. Queen Esther is about to put her life on the line for her people. She dresses carefully in her royal finery goes to the palace and the throne room. In the throne room all is going along smoothly. The itinerary is being carefully followed and there are no interruptions. Suddenly Queen Esther steps through the door. One by one courtiers see her, gasp, and stop whatever they are doing. She is not on the agenda and faces death. The king, perhaps...

  • Thought for the Week

    Paster Earl Herr|Jun 15, 2023

    Last week I gave a tiny introduction to the Book of Esther. I introduced Ahasuerus. Secular history knows him as Xerxes and I will call him that. We also lean on secular history to tell us about the times. Xerxes the Media-Persian king had a vast Empire. But as is often the case, he wanted more. He waged a war against Greece, which was to become the next World Empire. We heard about this a bit in the Book of Daniel in Nebuchadnezzar’s vision. It was of a statue, head of gold, chest of silver, b...

  • Thought for the Week

    Paster Earl Herr|Jun 8, 2023

    Two Old Testament books bear a woman’s name as title and are about the lives of those two women. One is Esther and I want to spend some time looking at her life and ministry. We can see and understand God is moving and shaping throughout the book yet His name is not mentioned. We can also see the two prime characters in the book are much involved with God and dependent on Him and yet prayer is not mentioned. It is alluded to but not actually stated. The setting for the book is following the f...

  • Thought for the Week

    Paster Earl Herr|Feb 23, 2023

    This is my 2,100 “Thought.” I want to thank those who have supported my writing over the years. I am not sure exactly how to go about that but will talk with Editor Anna Baughman to do so formally. When I started to do this more than 40 years ago, I had no idea how long it would last. I am grateful for the opportunity. I do hope you have found some of the articles helpful to you. As you might guess, sometimes it is hard to squeeze everything I want to say into the space available. There hav...

  • Thought for the Week

    Paster Earl Herr|Feb 2, 2023

    What is a leader? It is someone who provides direction, goals, motivation, and perhaps sets the pace for the group. He possesses authority either because he has earned it or it has been given to him by someone in higher authority. His leadership can be in some specific discipline or an overall dimension. Since I write about religious or Biblical subjects, my definition of a leader is within certain perimeters. Israel is a three-dimension-people. They are first family; the offspring of Abraham,...

  • Thought for the Week

    Paster Earl Herr|Jan 19, 2023

    “I want to always love You and be what You want me to be forever.” This was my closing sentence last time. Since God loves me (and you) perfectly, I think this should be my response to Him. When I was a child, we sang a hymn during worship services with these words: “Lord Jesus, I long to be perfectly whole, I want Thee forever to live in my soul. Break down every idol. Cast out every foe. Now, wash me and I shall be whiter than snow.” A chorus followed. That song resonated with me. I did and do...

  • Thought for the Week

    Paster Earl Herr|Dec 8, 2022

    The Journey has begun. The Son has left His home in Heaven. I asked John McConahy to do an illustration that would project a prosperous man leaving. But this was not truly the case. When The Christ left, He took nothing with Him. Philippians 2 tells us that The Son was absolutely equal with The Father. But, He left all that splendor behind. It has been long ago that I began courting Sharon. But I well remember I tried to dress and look my best. When Christ came to earth, He did not come with an...

  • Thought for the Week

    Paster Earl Herr|Nov 17, 2022

    When I ask our good friend John McConahy to do our Thanksgiving illustration, it will likely be a Thanksgiving table loaded with celebratory food. He will do a great job as usual. He might feature a large turkey with the carving tools beside it. There could be a number of steaming bowls, dishes, and platters of food and of course the place settings for the family. He might even include people. There could be grandpa with caving tools in hand and his family gathered around him. This would certain...

  • Thought for the Week

    Paster Earl Herr|Nov 10, 2022

    Sometimes things overflow. Sometimes we overflow. I know three men who faced near-death situations. When each talks about it, they choke up and are unable to speak for a while. Tears course down their faces. Perhaps, because they are men, they get embarrassed about it, though it is perfectly natural and I think wonderful. They should not be embarrassed. Life is precious to all of us. The thought of losing one’s life brings him or her to the deep well of emotion. Those emotions overflow. P...

  • Thought for the Week

    Paster Earl Herr|Oct 20, 2022

    I am so glad for an oven with a glass in the door and a light inside. It gives me opportunity to view the cake as it is baking. I can see it begin to pull away from the sides of the pan without having to open the door and risk upsetting the baking process. I want to spend time looking at the Prophet Jeremiah. In His Own special and unique way, God looked upon Jeremiah as he was growing in his mother’s womb. Jeremiah could not see himself as a prophet and protested in two ways. He said he c...

  • Thought for the Week

    Paster Earl Herr|Sep 29, 2022

    My thanks to Editor Anna Baughman for allowing me extra space for the last “Thought.” Today, we look at Isaiah 55 and we will likely switch to another book next. LISTEN EVERYONE, Isaiah begins this chapter. The message of the “Suffering Savior” is truly first of all for the Jews but God wants everyone to hear. For He loves everyone. God not only does not want anyone to be destroyed. He wants everyone to come in humble repentance for the sin committed so He can forgive and restore them to a right...

  • Thought for the Week

    Paster Earl Herr|Sep 22, 2022

    Isaiah has a special story to tell in his 53rd chapter. It is a conundrum, at once horrible and beautiful. It is a story of man's inhumanity to a man and God's tremendous love for mankind. Isaiah wrote almost 2,800 years ago. Since then, for about two thirds of that time, it was interpreted to mean Israel and all the world would one day receive a Suffering Savior called Messiah. Then about 1,200 A.D., interpretation began to shift and Israel looked at this story, beginning to substitute the...

  • Thought for the Week

    Paster Earl Herr|Sep 15, 2022

    We closed last time with: “His answer was:” specific and 100 percent accurate. Isaiah said, do not be afraid of this man nor of the words he has spoken. He will not enter this city. Not even one arrow will fly from his army into Jerusalem. He will hear a rumor and it will cause him to leave this siege and return to his country. He will die there. Your land will of itself produce food and good crops the next two years without any work on your part. For the third year, you will need to plow and...

  • Thought for the Week

    Paster Earl Herr|Sep 1, 2022

    For a prophet to be considered a prophet, speaking the Word of the Lord, he must issue prophesies (predictions) that are specific and 100-percent accurate. To prophesy that something is going to happen somewhere, is not enough. Nor is it enough for a prophet to say something is going to happen in hundreds of years from now because no one will know if that prophesy is going to come true. Isaiah did indeed prophesy of coming things. He prophesied a man named Cyrus would free Israel. He made this...

  • Thought for the Week

    Paster Earl Herr|Aug 18, 2022

    I did not plan to spend lots of time in any of the Old Testament Prophets/Books. But, already I have digressed. Last week’s “Thought” on “The Vineyard” gave us something to consider. I know these words are from God, through Isaiah, to Israel. But, we can always take God’s word, search it for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, and/or for instruction in righteousness to help us be better equipped to serve God. Warren Wiersbe proposes that Isaiah has preached his sermon, or used his parable and now begins to act like a troubadour and to sing a...

  • Thought for the Week

    Paster Earl Herr|Jun 23, 2022

    You have heard it. A blaring sound comes across your media. The words are: “This is a test. This is only a test…” Then you will be told it is not an emergency but if it had been an actual emergency, you would be told what to do. This test is given to prepare us. God also gave a test. You will find out all about it by reading Deuteronomy chapter 8. It is a two-part test and it is administered over many years. Moses is addressing the people of Israel. He is nearing the end of his life. He has led Israel for forty years. Because of his sin, he is...

  • The Time of the Judges

    Paster Earl Herr|May 12, 2022

    The Old Testament is about twice as large as the New. Yet, churches spend much more time in the study of the New. I am not negative about this necessarily but am concerned we begin to think the Old Testament is not important. It most certainly is. We can glean much knowledge about God and ourselves from it. I plan to spend some time in the Book of Judges. It was a challenging time. The dynamic heroes have passed on. Moses spent forty years leading Israel. There was great lament when he was...