Blog: Max Dawson
May 22, 2017
“Little Bo Peep has lost her sheep, and doesn’t know where to find them. Leave them alone and they’ll come home, wagging their tails behind them.”
Oh, really? Leave them alone and they’ll come home? Not likely. Sheep finding their way home may happen in a nursery rhyme, but not in real life.
In real life, sheep will rarely find their own way home. Sheep need shepherds. When they have wandered away, someone has to go after them and find them and bring them home. [Read more…]


Blog: Max Dawson
May 18, 2017
There are plenty of sources to which you can go to learn about leadership. You can pay for and attend a leadership course. You can buy leadership books at Amazon. You can watch Ted Talks on your computer. Probably some good stuff in each of these sources.
But the one source that has been overlooked by many folks is the Bible. [Read more…]


Blog: Max Dawson
May 15, 2017
I put out these emails every Monday (Max’s Monday Musings) and Thursday (Max’s Thursday Thoughts). I write them to help and encourage the people of God.
For the next several weeks I am going to focus on leadership issues. I have already published a couple of messages on that topic in the past week. I have now decided that I will take a little while and focus exclusively on leadership. If you have a question about leadership, or if you would like for me to address a specific quality of leadership, just respond to my email with your question. While I may not be an expert on leadership, I have learned a number of things in my 30 years as an elder and in my 47 years of preaching the gospel. I think I have learned some things that may help others.
The need for leaders among God’s people is more apparent than ever before in our generation. [Read more…]


Blog: Max Dawson
May 11, 2017
What do you think about the question? Are the most effective leaders just born that way? Or did things happen along the way that made them leaders?
We must admit that some people are born with advantages that others don’t have. If a person is taller than others, good looking, with a fine voice, that person has some advantages. But those advantages don’t make him a leader. There are plenty of folks with those qualities who have no leadership skills at all.
Yet, most people believe that some folks are just born leaders. It seems that lots of folks in the Lord’s church think that way. Could that be an excuse for not working to become a leader?
The greatest leader in the Old Testament is Moses. A born leader? [Read more…]


Blog: Max Dawson
May 8, 2017
Why were the people of God punished and carried off into Assyria and Babylon as slaves? The short and easy answer that Bible students give is “idolatry.” And that would be correct, but there is more to the story! [Read more…]


Blog: Max Dawson
May 4, 2017
Everybody knows it was an apple that Adam and Eve ate in the garden, right? Well, not exactly. In fact, we don’t know any more about it than it was the fruit of “the tree of the knowledge of good and evil” ().
More than 30 years ago when I was doing a daily radio broadcast, a caller asked me where the verse was that called that fruit an “apple.” I told him there was no verse that identified the fruit as an apple. He replied, “Oh yes, it is in there. I have read it, but I just can’t find it now.” No matter how much I explained to the man that no verse ever said that, he was sure that it was in the Bible somewhere. I told him to call me back when he found the verse. He said he would.
He never called back.
Do you ever wonder about how many things folks believe are in the Bible, but are not actually found there? [Read more…]

And out of the ground the Lord God made to spring up every tree that is pleasant to the sight and good for food. The tree of life was in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.

Genesis 2:17

And out of the ground the Lord God made to spring up every tree that is pleasant to the sight and good for food. The tree of life was in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.

Genesis 2:17

17 but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.” (ESV)


Blog: Max Dawson
May 1, 2017
Death is often a noisy affair. The sound of a gun blast or a bomb, or even the horrible sound of grinding steel and breaking glass in a car crash is noisy.
But not all killers are noisy. High blood pressure–hypertension–has been called a silent killer because it may have no outward symptoms. The killer stroke hits. It makes no noise and the man is taken out silently but certainly.
There is another silent killer. One that destroys just as certainly as the massive stroke. The victim is destroyed, but may have no idea what killed him. No one ever told him what was happening to him. It is another silent killer. [Read more…]


Blog: Max Dawson
April 27, 2017
I want you to take a brief trip with me to a place called “Gossip Town.” It is a place where we will find lots of talk filled with falsehood, bitterness, hatred, and envy.
Just about everybody has been to Gossip Town at least once in life. But some people live here because they enjoy the amusements of the place and the company they keep here. They often meet people much like themselves. But occasionally they become so astonished at what they see here, that they realize it is an evil place. They get out of Gossip Town, vowing to never return again.
Let me show you around Gossip Town. I hope you will find the place repulsive.
Flowing through the middle of the town is a wide river named Falsehood. The river is dirty, yet there is something about it that the residents find sweet to the taste. It is filled with lies, yet the people who live here drink from it freely. All kinds of lies are found in the river–white lies, black lies, social lies, half lies. False charges, cheating and deceit are just beneath the surface of the water. Those who drink from this river find it hard to ever tell the truth again.
Stretched across the river is a bridge named Bitterness. Why is it so named? Because so many bitter words have been spoken here; hurt feelings have been caused here. If you stand in the center of the bridge and look off in the distance you can see people crying bitter tears. You see anguished faces because of the stories and rumors that have been spread. You see a complete disregard for the feelings of others at this place. [Read more…]


Blog: Max Dawson
April 24, 2017
The church of our Lord began on Pentecost in . It was a glorious beginning, with 3,000 converts. The brethren shared their lives together with great joy (). The people of Jerusalem even looked upon them with favor.
But sinister forces were at work. According to , there was a group called the Sadducees that hated the gospel message. These men arrested the apostles. Satan was behind the foul deeds of these men who opposed God’s work.
This was only the beginning of the opposition of Satan against the church. The success of the gospel infuriates Satan. He will do whatever he can both within and without the church to try to destroy it. Below are some examples from the book of Acts that show what the devil has done to try to undermine the church. [Read more…]

2:1 When the day of Pentecost arrived, they were all together in one place. And suddenly there came from heaven a sound like a mighty rushing wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. And divided tongues as of fire appeared to them and rested on each one of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance.

Now there were dwelling in Jerusalem Jews, devout men from every nation under heaven. And at this sound the multitude came together, and they were bewildered, because each one was hearing them speak in his own language. And they were amazed and astonished, saying, “Are not all these who are speaking Galileans? And how is it that we hear, each of us in his own native language? Parthians and Medes and Elamites and residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, 10 Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya belonging to Cyrene, and visitors from Rome, 11 both Jews and proselytes, Cretans and Arabians—we hear them telling in our own tongues the mighty works of God.” 12 And all were amazed and perplexed, saying to one another, “What does this mean?” 13 But others mocking said, “They are filled with new wine.”

14 But Peter, standing with the eleven, lifted up his voice and addressed them: “Men of Judea and all who dwell in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and give ear to my words. 15 For these people are not drunk, as you suppose, since it is only the third hour of the day. 16 But this is what was uttered through the prophet Joel:

17 “‘And in the last days it shall be, God declares,
that I will pour out my Spirit on all flesh,
and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy,
and your young men shall see visions,
and your old men shall dream dreams;
18 even on my male servants and female servants
in those days I will pour out my Spirit, and they shall prophesy.
19 And I will show wonders in the heavens above
and signs on the earth below,
blood, and fire, and vapor of smoke;
20 the sun shall be turned to darkness
and the moon to blood,
before the day of the Lord comes, the great and magnificent day.
21 And it shall come to pass that everyone who calls upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.’

22 “Men of Israel, hear these words: Jesus of Nazareth, a man attested to you by God with mighty works and wonders and signs that God did through him in your midst, as you yourselves know— 23 this Jesus, delivered up according to the definite plan and foreknowledge of God, you crucified and killed by the hands of lawless men. 24 God raised him up, loosing the pangs of death, because it was not possible for him to be held by it. 25 For David says concerning him,

“‘I saw the Lord always before me,
for he is at my right hand that I may not be shaken;
26 therefore my heart was glad, and my tongue rejoiced;
my flesh also will dwell in hope.
27 For you will not abandon my soul to Hades,
or let your Holy One see corruption.
28 You have made known to me the paths of life;
you will make me full of gladness with your presence.’

29 “Brothers, I may say to you with confidence about the patriarch David that he both died and was buried, and his tomb is with us to this day. 30 Being therefore a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him that he would set one of his descendants on his throne, 31 he foresaw and spoke about the resurrection of the Christ, that he was not abandoned to Hades, nor did his flesh see corruption. 32 This Jesus God raised up, and of that we all are witnesses. 33 Being therefore exalted at the right hand of God, and having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, he has poured out this that you yourselves are seeing and hearing. 34 For David did not ascend into the heavens, but he himself says,

“‘The Lord said to my Lord,
Sit at my right hand,
35 until I make your enemies your footstool.’

36 Let all the house of Israel therefore know for certain that God has made him both Lord and Christ, this Jesus whom you crucified.”

37 Now when they heard this they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Brothers, what shall we do?” 38 And Peter said to them, “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 For the promise is for you and for your children and for all who are far off, everyone whom the Lord our God calls to himself.” 40 And with many other words he bore witness and continued to exhort them, saying, “Save yourselves from this crooked generation.” 41 So those who received his word were baptized, and there were added that day about three thousand souls.

42 And they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. 43 And awe came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were being done through the apostles. 44 And all who believed were together and had all things in common. 45 And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need. 46 And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts, 47 praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved. (ESV)

46 And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts, 47 praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved. (ESV)

4:1 And as they were speaking to the people, the priests and the captain of the temple and the Sadducees came upon them, greatly annoyed because they were teaching the people and proclaiming in Jesus the resurrection from the dead. (ESV)


Blog: Max Dawson
April 20, 2017
I doubt that there has ever been a contest to find the most popular thief in the world. But, if there was such a popularity contest, surely the man in would win it. In this text, he, like Jesus, was dying on a cross.
The thief said to Jesus, “Lord, remember me when you come into your kingdom.” Jesus replied to the man, “Assuredly, I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise.”
Why is this thief so popular? [Read more…]

42 And he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.” 43 And he said to him, “Truly, I say to you, today you will be with me in Paradise.” (ESV)


Blog: Max Dawson
April 17, 2017
A few weeks ago I wrote a piece about “fake news.” That is something that has been discussed in the media for the past several months. I gave an example of “fake news” in the Bible–the story spread by the guards in . Instead of accurately reporting that Jesus was raised from the dead, the soldiers told people that Jesus’ disciples had stolen the body. They were paid to tell that lie. The story, of course, was fake. But it was good enough to satisfy those who hated Jesus. It was a way of opposing the truth of His resurrection.
Let’s face it, it is apparent that some news outlets have fabricated or exaggerated stories for political purposes. News reporting ought to be a profession of the highest integrity and character.
So, we move from fake news on TV to “reality TV.” Lately, it is being confirmed–what some folks were suspicious of all along–that much of “reality TV” isn’t reality at all. It is “fake reality.”
A recent article in the Beaumont Enterprise gave insight on HGTV’s “House Hunters.” The episode was entitled “Moving Back to Beaumont.” It was about a couple moving back to our city. The article indicated that the couple had already bought a house and were closing on it. But the show had them “pretend” that they were still in the selection process. They then pretend to choose the house they have already bought. “House Hunters” is one of our favorite shows. But “pretend” is not reality. [Read more…]

11 While they were going, behold, some of the guard went into the city and told the chief priests all that had taken place. 12 And when they had assembled with the elders and taken counsel, they gave a sufficient sum of money to the soldiers 13 and said, “Tell people, ‘His disciples came by night and stole him away while we were asleep.’ 14 And if this comes to the governor’s ears, we will satisfy him and keep you out of trouble.” 15 So they took the money and did as they were directed. And this story has been spread among the Jews to this day. (ESV)