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Questions for Pastor
Every month Pastor Dave answers a common question from members of the congregation and confirmation youth in the church newsletter. This is an archive of past questions and answers. (More current questions towards top of list.) Also, some additional lessons from Pastor Dave to help you in everyday living. If you have a question you would like answered here, please send an e-mail to
2024 May Was Luke and apostile? 2024 April A great parable… 2024 March Why is Easter a month before Passover this year? 2024 Feb Is it okay to offer grape juice for communion? 2024 Jan Where does God’s name “Yahweh” come from? 2023 Dec Do you have a favorite Christmas song? 2023 Nov Do we get a second chance to trust in Jesus after we die? 2023 Oct What were those prayers again? 2023 August What is the meaning of life? 2023 July I don’t understand why Jesus would die for us? 2023 June 3 “Can We” questions. 2023 May Why don’t we believe in evolution? 2023 April What was your faith life like as a kid - did you go to church every Sunday (or more often)? 2023 March What are the rules for giving things up during Lent? 2023 Feb What is your ‘Life Verse’? 2023 Jan Does anything new ever jump out at you about the Christmas story? 2022 Nov How would the animals in the ark survive after the flood? 2022 Oct What is your favorite inspirational quote? 2022 Aug Can you put together a brief history of Living Word? 2022 July Do we each have a “Guardian Angel”? 2022 June What happened at the District Convention this year? 2022 May I heard the Building Committee is up and running again. What are they working on? 2022 April I don’t understand… 2022 March What does the Bible say about Ash Wednesday and Lent? 2022 Feb What is your favorite Bible Story? - Part 2 2022 Jan What is your favorite Bible Story? 2021 Dec Is Santa Claus real? 2021 Nov A few random, easy-to-answer questions this month: 2021 Oct Is slavery in the Bible different than what we think of it? 2021 Sept If God Knows Everything, Why Do We Pray? 2021 August Have you read all the Psalms? 2021 July What does God think of witchcraft and astrology? 2021 June Do you remember your confirmation verse? 2021 May “What book of the Bible would you recommend as a first book for a new Christian or someone interested in finding out about Jesus?” 2021 April Why did the authorities want to arrest & kill Jesus? 2021 March Will we know everything when we get to heaven? 2021 Feb Can you print out the ‘Sin Shoveling’ Instructions? 2021 Jan How was your Christmas? 2020 Dec Are we going to have…? 2020 Nov What can we do about the Christmas Program? 2020 Oct How was the wedding? 2020 Sept Do you thing there is a “silver lining” in every cloud? 2020 Aug Which Ten Commandment list should we go by, the one in my Bible or the one in the Catechism? 2020 July What is “Apologetics”? 2020 May When can we get back to church? 2020 April Is this it? Are we in the end times? What does Revelation say? 2020 March Why do some churches say the bread and wine of the Lord’s Supper “represents” Jesus’ body and blood? 2020 Feb Does God love trans-gender people? 2020 Jan Pastor, What is your favorite Bible verse? 2019 Dec Why do we give gifts to each other at Christmas when Jesus is the One with the birthday? 2019 Nov Do you know of any Christians who celebrate Sukkot? 2019 Oct If God knows what we need, why do we pray? 2019 Sept What’s the best advice you’ver ever received? 2019 Aug Do the people who believe in something other than Jesus end up going whereever they believe? Part II 2019 July Do the people who believe in something other than Jesus end up going whereever they believe? 2019 June How do they get anything done? 2019 May Are we going to pray? 2019 April Why did God create Satan, knowing what he would do?” 2019 March What is “Stewardship”? 2019 Feb Does is ‘count’ if you do what God asks - even if you don’t want to? 2019 Jan What does it mean to be “legalistic”? 2018 Dec How can God be everywhere... and hear everyone’s prayers at the same time? 2018 Nov Do Christians celebrate Sukkot? 2018 Oct How would you explain the “Gospel” to someone not familiar with it? 2018 Sept Can I use your article? 2018 Aug What is your favorite Bible passage? 2018 July Why do we have baptism and confirmation? 2018 June How old will we be in heaven? 2018 May What do you think God would think of you? 2018 April Who were the first eyewitnesses of Jesus’ resurrection? 2018 March In Revelation 4:8 and 7:15 it says they praised God and served Him “day and night.” But in Revelation 21:25 and 22:5 it says there will be no night. Which is it? 2018 Feb How do they decide when Easter is going to be each year? 2018 Jan Do you go to heaven if you “half believe” and half don’t? 2017 Dec Why are we having the Sunday School Christmas Program in January? 2017 Nov Should we be nervous talking to God? Part II 2017 Oct Should we be nervous talking to God? 2017 Sept Does God love everyone - even if they don’t believe in Him? 2017 Aug The church seems to be getting ‘filled up.’ What are the plans for Phase 2? 2017 July What is the blaspheme against the Holy Spirit? 2017 June Would you die for Jesus? 2017 May What did Jesus mean by, “The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak,”? 2017 April Do our realtives in Heaven watch over us? 2017 March What is heaven like (part 2)? 2017 Feb What is heaven like? 2017 Jan What exactly is this “Reset” thing? 2016 Dec God doesn’t tell us to celebrate Christmas, so why do we? 2016 Nov What does God’s Word say about electing leaders? 2016 Oct Why do we memorize the books of the Bible? 2016 Sept What does “begotten” mean? 2016 Aug What do you think of Donald Trump / Hillary Clinton? 2016 July What is your favorite hymn? 2016 June So, what are your answers? 2016 May Who do you say that Jesus is? 2016 April Why do we call it “Good Friday”? What happened to Jesus was horrible! 2016 March We all worship the same God, don’t we - Part 2 2016 Feb We all worship the same God, don’t we? 2016 Jan Why don't we call the church Bethlehem? 2016 Dec Why do we give each other gifts at Christmas when Jesus is the One with the birthday 2016 Nov Why do we have communion bread that tastes like the stuff the dentist has you bite on when he takes x-rays? 2016 Oct Do you think there were dinosaurs on the ark? 2016 Sept What does it mean to “believe in” Jesus? 2015 August What about first fruits? 2015 July Why have the colors on the alter been different almost every week? 2015 June “So, what insights did you get?” 2015 May I don't understand how there can be a God when I see all the death and suffering in the world. 2015 April What do we have to offer? 2015 March Who created God? 2015 Feb What is a virtue? 2015 Jan Will we be reading through the Bible from front to back? 2014 Dec What’s your favorite Proverb? 2014 Nov With the election coming up, it's not always easy to figure out who to vote for. What does God's Word have to say about electing leaders? 2014 Oct What Sundy is Reformation Sunday? 2014 Sept What do you see as the root cause of all the problems in our country / world? 2014 August What advice do you have for me? 2014 July Does He mean that literally? 2014 June Will my dog be in heaven? 2014 May How can I tell someone about Jesus? 2014 April Does God get 'sick' of us? 2014 March What's the right way to make the sign of the cross (I see you do it different than what I was taught)? 2014 Feb What is your favorite book in the New Testament? 2014 Jan What’s going on with Thrivent? 2013 Dec What's Your Favorite Book in the Bible - Gospels? 2013 Nov What’s Your Favorite Book in the Bible - Old Testament? 2013 Oct Why Did God Put Us Here - Why Do We Exist? 2013 Sept What's Your Favorite Memory of Our First Year in This Building? 2013 Aug If you could spend one day with someone - living or dead - who would you choose to hang out with? 2013 July Will I recognize and know my relatives and friends in heaven? 2013 June Do we go to heaven when we die - or to a new earth? 2013 May What do you think about the proposed Gay Marriage law? 2013 April What makes you so sure that Jesus rose from the dead? 2013 March How do we know God is real - other than the Bible telling us? 2013 Feb ““What Ministry “wins” have you had this past month that have moved Living Word forward in spiritual and numerical growth?” 2013 Jan Where Was God? 2012 Dec Do you think the world will end this month - like the Mayan calendar says? 2012 Nov What dreams do you have for the future growth of Living Word? 2012 Oct What does the Bible say about homosexuality? 2012 Sept What are you looking forward to most about being in our own building? 2012 Aug Seen any good movies lately? 2012 July Does God cause bad things to happen or does He allow them because of sin? 2012 June When will you be able to be in your new building? 2012 May What’s going on with your building project? 2012 April Do dogs go to heaven? 2012 March What do you mean, too comfortable? 2012 Feb What is a “Born Again” Christian? 2012 Jan What happens when we die? 2011 Dec What is your favorite Chirstmas__________? 2011 Nov Why does the Church (i.e. Christian organizations in the US that agree Jesus is Lord and the Bible is the Word of God) ignore critical issues that directly affect God's people? 2011 Oct I’m wondering about cremation. I’d prefer it to burial, but is it a sin? 2011 Sept So, what happened at the Planning Weekend? 2011 Aug Let’s say the government made it illegal to possess a Bible and the authorities showed up to take yours. You decided to tear out just one page to keep, hide and read. Which page would you tear out? 2011 July Can you go to hell for telling a lie? Part III 2011 June Can you go to hell for telling a lie? Part II 2011 May Can you go to hell for telling a lie? Part I 2011 April With what happened in Japan and all the earthquakes and tsunamis recently - and predictions of the end of the world - don’t you think we are getting close to The End? 2011 Mar Why is Ash Wednesday so late this year - wasn’t it in January last year? 2011 Feb Why do we believe the Bible? 2011 Jan How do I know what God wants me to do? 2010 Dec Is it ok to talk to God when I’m walking? 2010 Nov When I tell someone that I belong to a Missouri Synod congregation, sometimes I get a response like this, “Oh, you’re the people who discriminate against women, not allowing them to be pastors.” How do I answer that? 2010 Oct What’s with all these ‘Only comes once in a century’ signs? 2010 Sept I have a friend who’s going through some tough times. Do you have some verses I could give them that would help out? 2010 Aug Do animals go to heaven? 2010 July I hear that the LC-MS national convention is this July. What’s on the agenda? 2010 June Why are the Ten Commandments so confusing? 2010 May How is that possible? 2010 Apr Where did this "Maundy Thursday" come from? 2010 Mar What good can come from death? 2010 Feb How do I answer someone who says “We all believe in Jesus, that’s all that really matters,”? 2010 Jan Does the Bible say that Adam & Eve weren't created in the Garden of Eden? 2009 Dec How do I deal with all the crazy relationships during the holidays? 2009 Nov What lesson has God used His creation to teach you recently? 2009 Oct What do you think of the ELCA decision regarding homosexuality? 2009 Sept What else is there to say about the ELCA decision? What did you accomplish at the "Eat, Pray, & Brainstorm" session? The Bible says “God knows our needs before we ask,” so why do we need to ask? What goes on at a District Convention? What is the event that separates Christianity from all other beliefs? How do we know these Bible stories are true? I’m supposed to "testify" to Jesus, but what does that mean? Why, does God put up with us? How come you write in your Bible? Doesn’t the Bible tell us not to add to God’s word? In Galatians chapter five we see that there are two forces battling in our lives: our sinful nature and the Holy Spirit. You said that the Holy Spirit is the stronger force, but isn’t our sinful nature stronger? I mean, we keep on sinning. Why did God create us as sinners? What does Scientology teach? What is the purpose of praying for something or to change a situation when God is going to do what he's going to do anyway? The Bible says that all we need to be saved is "repent and believe." So why do we have to try to quit sinning, and why do we have to do things like read our Bibles and pray daily and worship every week? What have you been reading lately that’s brought you closer to the Lord? Was Pontius Pilate forgiven for putting Jesus to death? (i.e. Did God forgive him?) Will we see our pets in heaven? Is God "For" or "Against" the War in Iraq? Why don’t we celebrate the Passover? Is it a sin to wonder if there are other Gods - since thinking it is the same as doing it? I don’t really need to pay attention to the Old Testament now that Jesus has come - do I? And besides, the God of the Old Testament is a God of wrath and in the New Testament He’s a God of mercy... How come Jesus has so many names? What do Muslims believe anyway? Why do we worship on Sunday, not Saturday? People always say, "Oh, you’re the strict ones," when I tell them I go to a Missouri Synod church. How do I respond to that? When are you going to start building? What did you do at the Planning Retreat? Why should I bother to pray when God is going to do what he's going to do anyway? What kinds of punishments or consequences are given when you break a commandment only by what you think in your mind? Our Bible Study to get ready for the Youth Gathering told us that we were created to praise God. Isn’t that kind of... self-centered on God’s part? How come the "Passion" movie didn’t show more of the good things Jesus did? You saw an early showing of the Passion of the Christ movie. What did you think? What will we look like in heaven? There’s nothing wrong with Ouija boards is there? Are there different ‘levels’ in heaven - and hell? How can I know God’s will for my life? What is Rally Day? It’s just for kids isn’t it? Will we know people when we get to heaven? Have you told them that? Why don’t we have “kneelers” in the pews for praying? Can Jewish people believe in Jesus? I have a friend who says that he can’t believe in Jesus, because Jews don’t do that. What do you make of the finding of this tomb with Jesus’ name on it ? Questions About Lent What will heaven be like? What about Halloween? What are your thoughts on this email? What is this “Network” thing we are doing in January? I feel really guilty for believing in Jesus and taking his forgiveness and eternal life, but then not doing the other stuff he wants. What does God think about that? We need to always seek to do what God wants us to do... but how do we know what God wants us to do? Does God Really Love Us? Don’t you think it’s horrible that “Happy Holidays” has replaced ”Merry Christmas”? What about the "gift" God gave us at Christmas? How Well Do You Know The Christmas Story? Someone I talked to said the Bible isn’t reliable, because even the Gospel writers couldn’t agree on the details of Jesus’ life. Is that true? Have I really forgiven someone if I say they are forgiven, but don’t feel like it? You always say after Confession that God has forgotten the sins we’ve confessed and that we should forget them too. But there are some things you just can’t forget - there are constant reminders of them in my life. What’s your favorite Bible passage or story? What’s a "Faith-Promise?" Are mediums real? What do you think of the Terri Schiavo situation? God will forgive them, won’t He? Someone told me that an excuse is really a lie. Is that true? Do you think we’re coming to the end of the world? What do you think of the election? Why haven’t we had Ash Wednesday yet - isn’t it always in February? Where does the Easter bunny fit in - and why does he deliver the eggs? Why do we have to do this? Are there dinosaurs in the Bible? The Book of Revelation says people will be forced to get a special identifying mark and without it they won’t be able to buy or sell. They told me this is one of the signs that the end of the world is coming. Is that true? (And is it true that there are plans in our country to do that)? How can the demons believe? How do you get rid of demons? Some questions about "Forgiving." What did you think of The DaVinci Code? Why do the Jehovah Witnesses believe that only 144,000 people (the first 144,000 Jehovah’s Witnesses) will get to heaven? I know God created the universe, but after seeing the recent front-page article in Time magazine, I’m wondering if he could have use the process of evolution to do it? Why do we change colors on the altar and pulpit - green, red, purple, etc...? Why do we say we believe in the holy catholic church in the baptismal rite? What is your vision for Living Word - as it relates to a new building? Where did the practice of cremation start and is it ok for Christians? What exactly is "Building Bridges to Creating a Healthy, Caring Community"? How do we know the Bible is real? How can the Bible say that Jesus was with God the Father at the creation of the world but also tells us that He was born in Bethlehem long after the world was created? What do you think about Jesse (Ventura)? Why does it sometimes seem that God doesn't answer our prayers? Do We Turn Into Angels When We Die? How do pastors get a "call," and what do you do when you get one? Questions about God’s calling (continued) How do they decide when Easter is going to be each year? Can you answer some questions about angels? What happens to us after death (until judgment day)? What is Advent? Why do we celebrate Christmas in winter when Jesus was born in the spring? Where did the tradition of the Christmas tree get started ? What exactly is this "40 Days of Purpose"? How are we doing on finding land for the new mission congregation? What was accomplished at the first Vision Planning session? So, now that it’s been decided to merge New Life and Shepherd of the Hills, what’s next? Was Jesus a Republican or a Democrat? I hear we’re getting a DCO intern. What’s a "DCO"? What’s going on with the new mission church? I haven’t heard much about it. What does the book of Revelation have to say about Y2K ? Lessons from Pastor David to help you in everyday living: THE HOME AS FAITH TEACHER WAYS TO LOVE YOUR CHILDREN Lessons For the Church from the book of Acts Lessons from Bible Guys Give Your Spiritual Life A Lift...