Articles by Paul Ellis

Why Flee to the Mountains?

July 19, 2018 // 0 Comments

When trouble comes, you have two choices: fight or flight. Fleeing is the underrated choice. In these days of belligerence and bullying, the temptation is to fight or die. Yet Jesus told his disciples that there would be times when fleeing is the better option: Whenever they persecute you in one city, flee to the [...]

Is God the Author of Evil?

July 6, 2018 // 63 Comments

Whenever I tell people that God-is-all-the-time-good, I am invariably rebuked by those who say he isn’t. And they’ve got the scriptures to prove it. Job 1:21 says God robbed Job 1 Samuel 2:6-7 says God makes people poor and kills them Exodus 4:11 says God gives people disabilities Isaiah 45:7 says God is the [...]

Every Knee Shall Bow: Was Paul a Universalist?

June 21, 2018 // 12 Comments

Here’s a verse to fire the imagination: It is written: “As surely as I live,” says the Lord, “Every knee will bow before me; every tongue will acknowledge God.” (Rom. 14:11) What picture comes to your mind when you read these words? Some see this verse as pointing to universal salvation. “Everyone who [...]

Does Jesus Want You to Sell your Stuff? (Luke 12:33)

June 7, 2018 // 34 Comments

The Bible is full of treasures that we are afraid to open. We fear scriptures that are meant to bless us, and we run from words that should fill us with joy. Here’s an example: Sell your possessions and give to the poor. (Luke 12:33) There is treasure here. Do you see it? Do you realize what Jesus is saying? [...]

The One about the Millstone and the Sea

May 24, 2018 // 29 Comments

A pastor makes an announcement: “Great news, church. Our kids’ program is growing and we need teachers. If you have a heart for teaching children, let me know. But take care, if you do a poor job, God will punish you. It would be better for a millstone to be hung around your neck and for you to be drowned in [...]

Are Unfruitful Branches Lifted Up?

May 2, 2018 // 67 Comments

Here is possibly the worst verse in the Bible: I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit. (John 15:1-2, NIV) I say worst verse because this is a shockingly poor translation. A better one is, “He takes up or lifts every branch in me.” If you’re not [...]

The Sign of Jonah

April 20, 2018 // 43 Comments

The scribes and Pharisees could have won the gold medal for insensitivity. One minute they’re accusing Jesus of being in cahoots with the devil; the next they’re asking for some sign of his divinity (Matt. 12:24, 38). Jesus responded by telling them: A wicked and adulterous generation asks for a sign! But [...]

The Eagles are Coming

March 29, 2018 // 32 Comments

For wherever the carcass is, there the eagles will be gathered together. (Matthew 24:28, NKJV) This is one of the strangest prophecies in scripture. It is also one of the most interesting. It is found in the middle of Christ’s warnings about the fall of Jerusalem. Jesus is basically saying there will be a dead [...]

Did God Hand Job Over to Satan? (Job 2:6)

March 15, 2018 // 103 Comments

God good; Satan bad. That’s deep revelation, yet many don’t know it. They think a good God does bad things and that he sometimes employs the devil to do his dirty work. Take the subject of sickness, for instance. When we get sick it’s natural to ask, how did this happen? Did I catch a bug? Did I eat [...]

What Are Heavenly Treasures?

March 1, 2018 // 32 Comments

We know there are heavenly treasures, because Jesus says so, but what are they? Some say God is going to dispense treasure, mansions, and even cities to those who have proven faithful. “There had better be some reward for my hard work—a gold star at least—otherwise why I am working?” Others say there are [...]

The Myth of Exclusionism

February 26, 2018 // 57 Comments

I know what you’re thinking. “Clear my diary because I’ve been waiting for someone to write about exclusionism. Finally!” No, you’re probably not thinking that at all. You’re thinking, “What’s exclusionism?” Exclusionism, in the context of grace, is a myth, a yeti. It’s a fake gospel. And [...]