If you're interested in submitting a Letter to the Editor, click here. The Panola Watchman gladly accepts letters that are 300 words or less and pertain to Panola County. Letter writers must include their name, phone number, email and city of residence when submitting items (only names and city will be published).

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Did you hear about the man who was voted “the most even-tempered man” of the community? They said, “He’s mad ALL the time!” Glad I’m not that man! However, I could get a few votes once in awhile. Hugh Fulford, writing in the Magnolia Messenger, titled his article, “I Am MAD!” I even texted h…

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The story of the rich man (Dives) and the poor beggar (Lazarus) is portrayal of the reversal roles, as indicated in Luke 16:19-31. The reversal of the fortunes of the rich and the poor is a primary theme of this lesson. Success stories that tell about someone’s move from rags to riches aboun…

What exactly is courage? Biblical courage is a quality of mind or spirit that enables a person to meet the challenges of life with fearlessness, calmness and firmness. Courage is fear that has said its prayers, and it fights to the end.

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God wants all persons to be saved, as revealed in 1 Timothy 2:1-7. Christ gave himself as a ransom for all. Paul was appointed to be “a teacher of Gentiles.” The lesson calls us to be universal in our prayers. The mercy of God leads us to include everyone in our prayers for salvation. It pro…

Paul’s life was an amazing example of perseverance through dangers, suffering and threats of death. According to 2 Corinthians 11:23-27, he experienced imprisonments, beatings, shipwrecks and dangers from travel, weather, robbers, the Jews, the Gentiles and false brethren. His goal was to sp…

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Friend, tell me what is wrong with the following: energy independence, securing our borders, saving babies, tough on crime, fair elections, school choice, protecting our constitutional rights, stopping genital mutilation of kids, putting parents first or putting America first?

The parable of potter and clay, in Jeremiah 18:1-11, tells of a vessel that was spoiled. The clay was not discarded but reworked. For the prophet, it symbolizes the relationship of God to the house of Israel. How good it is to have that which is spoiled remade into something beautiful and go…

How do you feel about student loans and debt being forgiven? It really isn’t “forgiven” but “transferred” to taxpayers! And what’s ironic is that the majority of taxpayers have no outstanding student loans, or if they did have student loans they got jobs and paid off their debt. Our kids did…

After Moses died, God gave Joshua the task of leading His people into the Promised Land. Although Joshua had been trained by Moses and had worked under him, the thought of replacing Moses and taking responsibility for these people must have filled Joshua with fear and trembling. Joshua also …

Practical expressions for love are suggested, in Hebrews 13:1-8, 15-16. Our faith is not simply a decision we can give only passing notice. In being a Christian, we become open to the possibilities of God’s power in our lives. Christ called his disciples not only to agree with a theological …

The news was quickly spreading. People loved the new Teacher in Galilee, and now He was coming to Nazareth. It was a Sabbath day when He stood up among them and began reading from the book of Isaiah. But wait. They knew that guy. Wasn’t that Joseph’s son? He grew up with them. What was their…

What is faith? Faith is the substance of things hoped for, as indicated in Hebrews 11:1-3, 8-19. Substance is the ground beneath you. The faith of Abraham who “set out, not knowing where he was going” (v. 8) secured the promise. Later, he risked that promise when he was ready to offer up his…

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Weather. Can’t do a thing abut it but hope and pray. It’s talked about more than probably any other subject. I realize no one can accurately predict the weather 100 percent of the time, maybe at no time. The closest I’ve ever heard of was an elderly gentleman in South Texas. He was downright…

We should “Lay aside sin, which clings so closely, and ... run with perseverance” as indicated in Hebrews 12:1-2, 12-17. Being a true Christian involves dedication, hard work and being true to the Lord. We are to give up whatever endangers our relationship with God, to run the race of life w…

Life is composed of a series of decisions, which is why it’s important to have a plan for making wise choices. The Bible is filled with verses about prayer and discovering God’s will. If we follow a plan based on God’s Word, we’ll make decisions wisely and avoid the difficulties and heartach…

Paul concludes his message of Justification by faith in Galatians 3:23-29. The law, like a “custodian” or “guardian,” had been the means of salvation until Christ came. Baptism in Christ sets aside all divisions. “There is no longer Jew or Greek, there is no longer slave or free, there is no…

Sometimes, when we think about fearing God, we feel like we might lose out on the good things in life. But the truth is there are many blessings that come with acknowledging God’s sovereignty and power. Here are a few reasons why reverencing the Lord is a very good idea.

A heresy taught that Christ was just another intermediary through whom humans could communicate with God. The Creator and creation were considered separate. Paul, in Colossians 2:6-15, contrasted this tradition and its elemental spirits for the universe with the sufficiency of Christ. He off…

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What does it mean to fear the Lord? Should we be terrified of Him, or does it mean something else? If we are lost and living in sin, we have a good reason to be afraid of God because we are not right with Him and are destined for judgment and condemnation. But if we are His redeemed people, …

Solomon’s goal was to show that earthly possessions and accomplishments are ultimately meaningless, as indicated in Ecclesiastes 1:2,12-16. Only the pursuit of God brings real satisfaction. Although written thousands of years ago, these words from the book of Ecclesiastes speak just as power…

Like the Israelites, we too have been entrusted with the responsibility to teach by instruction and example the truth of God’s Word, which results in a desire to walk obediently before the Lord in the power of the Holy Spirit. Since both instruction and example are necessary, we must have co…

In Luke 10:38-42, Luke continues to emphasize the one thing that we need is to love God and neighbor. The story of Martha entertaining Jesus in his home focuses on the styles of two sisters. Martha was busy serving, while Mary sat at Jesus’ feet adoring and contemplating her love toward Jesus.

When David was 30 years old, he began his reign and rule for 40 years (2 Samuel 5:1-5, 9-10). He ruled over Judah, in the southern kingdom, for seven years before ruling over both the entire southern kingdom and northern kingdom. He moved the capital to Jerusalem, where he ruled for 33 years…

Without a sense of purpose, there is no hope. But the Lord created each person for a reason: to love God and be loved by Him. He pursues us and does everything in His infinite power to reveal Himself. The Lord wants each person to understand who He is and respond in worship and devotion (1 J…

The touch of Jesus brings healing and life. God is the author of life and rejoices in the lives of the servants, not in their destruction, poverty, sickness and death. Two miracle stories are told. One demonstrates Jesus’ power over disease. A woman touched his garment and was healed of her …

Not only is Christ the source of genuine hope; He is also the restorer of lost hope (Romans 5:1-15). Unless we’re vigilant in guarding our perspective, many situations can erode optimism and trust. Biblical principles are the best defense against such discouragement.

Why did King Ahab want Naboth’s vineyard? What did Naboth say to King Ahab? When Naboth refused to sell his inheritance, Queen Jezebel suggested that Naboth be charged with insurrection and be killed. Property of an executed criminal would fall to the king. The prophet Elijah found Ahab in t…

Jesus, James, John and Peter were denied hospitality in a Samaritan Village, in Luke 9:51-62. James and John wanted to burn it down. Jesus rebuked them. But Jesus never rebuked the inhospitality of Samaritans. Instead he corrected the sons of Zebedee. His journey toward death never hurt anyo…

The region of the Gerasenes is southeast of the Sea of Galilee on the gentle side of the sea. As Jesus and his disciples sailed across the Sea of Galilee, he landed on the shoreline and met Legion, a demon-possessed man from the town. For many years, Legion had not worn clothes or lived in a…

Two sisters were busy preparing for Jesus’ visit. Upon His arrival, Mary turned her attention to the Lord. Meanwhile, Martha was distracted by the preparations and became agitated that her sister was no longer helping. We may think Martha was right. If there was still work to be done, her si…

Christian love finds its motivation in God’s love for us. His mercy to us is the basis of the mercy we extend to others. Knowing God is our highest priority, but this pursuit should not replace or diminish our interpersonal relationships with others. Rather, our personal interaction with God…

“I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service” (Romans 12:1).

Paul concludes his message of Justification by faith in Galatians 3:23-29. The law, like a “custodian” or “guardian,” had been the means of salvation until Christ came. Baptism in Christ sets aside all divisions. “There is no longer Jew or Greek, there is no longer slave or free, there is no…

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Have you ever eaten English pea salad? When I was a kid, it was made with those awful mushy canned peas, but much later, I discovered frozen peas, and all of a sudden, I loved English pea salad! If you’re so inclined, you could add diced ham and cheddar cheese to this concoction and make a m…

“When Jesus was in Bethany at the house of Simon the leper, a woman came to Him having an alabaster flask of very costly fragrant oil, and she poured it on His head as He sat at the table” (Matthew 26:6-7).