Thursday, April 25, 2019

Image of Eternity

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You people in Judah and Jerusalem have been unfaithful to the LORD. You have disgraced the temple that he loves, and you have committed the disgusting sin of worshiping other gods.  I pray that the LORD will no longer let those who are guilty belong to his people, even if they eagerly decide to offer the LORD a gift.  And what else are you doing? You cry noisily and flood the LORD's altar with your tears, because he isn't pleased with your offerings and refuses to accept them.  And why isn't God pleased? It's because he knows that each of you men has been unfaithful to the wife you married when you were young. You promised that she would be your partner, but now you have broken that promise.  Didn't God create you to become like one person with your wife? And why did he do this? It was so you would have children, and then lead them to become God's people. Don't ever be unfaithful to your wife.

Malachi 2:11-15

The Holy Spirit inspired the prophet Malachi to compare "worshipping other gods" to being unfaithful to your wife.  When a man puts "another woman" into the focus of his heart his wife shares the sorrow of God!  

Marriage is a human relationship which is an image of the God-Man interaction which He desires with all His heart!  

The relationship that we can have with God through His Son Jesus Christ is like marriage in so many ways.  Our close, personal relationship with Jesus results in "new life." 

When you live out the image of Eternity in your marriage, you will be blessed in many ways!  But when you violate that picture in your marriage, your fellowship with Jesus is seriously damaged!  

Let the Word of God, spoken by Malachi ring in your ears and go deep in your heart!  "Don't ever be unfaithful to your wife!"

"Lord Jesus, help me to guard my heart in my relationship with You and with my wife.  May Your Holy and Precious Name be praised now and forever.  Amen."

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Jesus is the Messenger and the Message

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I, the LORD, also promise you a terrible shortage, but not of food and water. You will hunger and thirst to hear my message.  You will search everywhere-- from north to south, from east to west. You will go all over the earth, seeking a message from me, the LORD. But you won't find one.

Amos 8:11-12

Are you seeking a message from God?  Do you want to know what God thinks about your concerns?  

Often, we as human beings seek to know what God thinks about a matter in order to confirm that what we already think is indeed the right thing!  We are not seeking to know His thoughts so we can align our thinking to His! 

There are millions of people alive today who are seeking God, but rejecting Jesus Christ!  Jesus Himself said that He is the Way, the Truth and the Life, and that no one can come to the Father except  through Him!  So, even if you are seeking the right God, but are trying to come to Him without Jesus, you will fail because Jesus is the only Way to God!

God created man with a desire to know Him.  But sin destroyed the relationship of Adam and Eve with God.  Jesus came to restore the fellowship of men with God.  If you are seeking to know God without Jesus you will fail.  If you are seeking to know Jesus Christ, you will come to know the Father as well!

"Lord Jesus, thank You for being the Messenger and the Message from God for all of those who follow You.  Praise Your Holy Name now and forever.  Amen."

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

Pride Like a Cedar Tree

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Ezekiel, son of man, tell the king of Egypt and his people that I am saying: You are more powerful than anyone on earth. Now listen to this.  There was once a cedar tree in Lebanon with large, strong branches reaching to the sky.  This tree had plenty of water to help it grow tall, and nearby streams watered the other trees in the forest.  But this tree towered over those other trees, and its branches grew long and thick.  Birds built nests in its branches, and animals were born beneath it. People from all nations lived in the shade of this strong tree.  It had beautiful, long branches, and its roots found water deep in the soil.  None of the cedar trees in my garden of Eden were as beautiful as this tree; no tree of any kind had such long branches.  I, the LORD, gave this tree its beauty, and I helped the branches grow strong. All other trees in Eden wanted to be just like it.  King of Egypt, now listen to what I, the LORD God, am saying about that tree: The tree grew so tall that it reached the sky and became very proud and arrogant.  So I, the LORD God, will reject the tree and hand it over to a foreign ruler, who will punish it for its wickedness.

Ezekiel 31:2-11

God will judge anyone who becomes proud and arrogant because of the blessings God Himself gives them!  

Never forget, if you can run faster than any other man, it was God who made your legs able to do that.  

If you are wise, like Solomon, that wisdom came from God, not from you.

A very wise man once told me to listen carefully to the criticism that comes my way and strive to make any changes that are needed.  He also said to completely ignore the praise of other men.  He said that believing the praise of others will destroy you!

When you are blessed by God and men begin to praise you for the things that come from God, you are in for trouble unless your response to every compliment is to witness to the fact that all your abilities come from God!

There is a scripture that says pride comes before a fall!  Run away from everything that plants even a seed of pride in your heart.  Then you will not be like the Cedar tree in Lebanon!

"Lord Jesus, the only thing I have to be proud of is You!  You are the giver of perfect gifts and all I am is because of who You are!  May Your Holy and Precious Name be praised now and forever.  Amen."

Saturday, April 20, 2019

Difficult Day of Rest

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It was Friday, and the Sabbath was about to begin.  The women who had come with Jesus from Galilee followed Joseph and watched how Jesus' body was placed in the tomb.  Then they went to prepare some sweet-smelling spices for his burial. But on the Sabbath they rested, as the Law of Moses commands.

Luke 23:54-56

The Sabbath day before the Resurrection of Jesus must have been a very difficult "Day of Rest."  Jesus was dead!  He was not simply seriously injured.  The life of Christ left His Body and that Body was put in a tomb.  

There was no Resurrection Celebration on that Sabbath.  Even the Romans suspected that the followers of Jesus would claim that He had come out of the grave.  That is why they posted the soldiers.  But Jesus was dead, and we know of no one who really expected Him to rise again! 

It must have been hard to sleep peacefully that Saturday night.  The words "Jesus is dead" must have replayed in their minds, over and over like a broken record!  He was so young and just getting started in His quest to change the world!  How could He make any difference now that He was gone?

The disciples did not know that this is what He came to do!  Without the death of Jesus there would be no hope for anyone else!  But the Death and Resurrection of Jesus opened Heaven's door for all who would follow Him!  

Hopelessness and despair must have filled the disciples hearts on that dark Sabbath day.  But a few hours later, the greatest event in all of human history brought never ending joy and peace that can flood your heart, even today!  

Jesus is Lord and He is Alive forever!

"Lord Jesus, thank You for paying the price for my sins as You died on the Cross!  And thank You, Lord for the never ending joy and peace that came into my heart when You came out of the Tomb!  Praise Your Holy Name now and forever.  Amen."

Friday, April 19, 2019

Jesus Exploded Out of the Grave

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I want you to know about the great and mighty power that God has for us followers. It is the same wonderful power he used when he raised Christ from death and let him sit at his right side in heaven.

Ephesians 1:19-20

The Resurrection of Jesus Christ is the most important point in the History of the world!  Jesus lived a perfect life, performed many miracles and left His followers a way of living that cannot be matched.  But when Jesus exploded out of the grave by the Power of God Almighty, He sealed Eternity for all those who would follow Him!

When you think about and stand in awe of the Resurrection of Jesus, don’t forget about your own resurrection, yet to come!  That is what He promised.  The same Power that God used to raise Jesus from the grave will be used to raise you from death!
The Resurrection of Jesus was a demonstration of the Power of God that is for all of us!

When God created Adam and Eve, He intended that they live forever!  Sin did not stop the eternal existence of man.  Sin simply made necessary the dividing line between Righteousness and Evil!

 When you die, your life is not over!  Your Eternity will either be Heaven with Jesus or Hell, separated from all that is Good and Holy.  The choice is yours!

Think about the Resurrection of Jesus and where He went after He rose from the grave.  And think about your own resurrection and where you will go when you do!

“Lord Jesus, I know that God’s Power will bring me out of the grave after I die.  And because of Your Blood You will take me to live with You forever in Heaven.  Praise Your Holy Name now and forever.  Amen."

Thursday, April 18, 2019

Forgive and Comfort

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I don't want to be hard on you. But if one of you has made someone feel bad, I am not really the one who has been made to feel bad. Some of you are the ones.  Most of you have already pointed out the wrong that person did, and that is punishment enough for what was done.  When people sin, you should forgive and comfort them, so they won't give up in despair.  You should make them sure of your love for them.

2 Corinthians 2:5-8

When someone sins against you what must you do?  Of course, you must forgive them, because that is the nature of Christ.  Jesus did not come to condemn.  He came to forgive, and that is what He does! 

These verses talk about one other thing that you must do. When someone sins, we must forgive them and “comfort" them!  Forgiving someone is usually easier than comforting them.  You can forgive someone and never think about them again.  But comforting the person who sinned and making them sure that you love them cannot be done without personal contact with the person who sinned!

Sometimes in the heat of the moment the sin is not just by one person.  Perhaps two people sin against each other by what they say.  Satan wants them to run away from each other, which will simply let the “infection” fester and cause them both great harm.  Jesus wants them to forgive each other and comfort each other so that both of them know they are loved!

The Enemy wants to destroy fellowship when we sin.  Jesus wants to use the healing process after that sin to build a strong, loving bond between those who were, even briefly at war!

So when forgiveness is needed don’t forget to also comfort the person who is forgiven!  Assure them of your love with more than words!  When you do that you will rebuild what Satan tried to destroy and see the Power of Jesus doing what He does best!

“Thank You Jesus for being the Great Physician and healing even the wounds that we inflict on each other.  May Your Holy and Righteous Name be praised now and forever.  Amen."

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

His Blood is Enough

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From Paul, chosen by God to be an apostle of Christ Jesus, and from Timothy, who is also a follower.  To God's people who live in Colossae and are faithful followers of Christ. I pray that God our Father will be kind to you and will bless you with peace!

Colossians 1:1-2

Over the years there has been much discussion and even controversy about what it means to be “chosen" by God for a specific task.  Some even think you cannot be saved unless you are chosen specifically by God.  That would mean many people are created without even the hope of salvation!

That would totally contradict the Words of Jesus Himself when He told His disciples to “go into all the world and preach the Gospel to everyone.”  He then said that a man’s response to the message would determine whether or not he was saved!  

For me, the bottom line is this: The Blood of Jesus is powerful enough to erase all the sins that have ever been committed.  And those who are washed in that Blood will be saved!  God does not choose to limit the Power of the Blood of Jesus by choosing some to be saved and some to be lost!
If you believe otherwise, you need to talk to Jesus about why His sacrifice was not enough for everyone!

“Thank You Jesus that Your Blood is enough to cover all the sins that have ever been committed on this earth!  May Your Holy and Righteous Name be praised now and forever.  Amen!"