Monday, November 30, 2015

What to Think About!

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You have been raised to life with Christ. Now set your heart on what is in heaven, where Christ rules at God’s right side.  Think about what is up there, not about what is here on earth.  You died, which means that your life is hidden with Christ, who sits beside God.  Christ gives meaning to your life, and when he appears, you will also appear with him in glory.

Colossians 3:1-4

As we get nearer the Day when Jesus returns the importance of these verses seems to grow! This world is calling for you to set your heart on things down here, but God wants you to set your heart on things in Heaven! What are the things in Heaven that we should think about?

Of course, we only know about what is in Heaven from what God has told us in the Bible. But we can think about first of all, Christ ruling at God's right side. We will be allowed to stand, or probably fall down before that throne and worship Him forever! It will be the most amazing experience anyone could ever have and those who are followers of Jesus here will see Him there in all His glory next to the Father! When you see Jesus face to face you will find out things about Him that have always been hidden from the view of man. When you see the Father you will step into Eternal Truth that you haven't even imagined it existed!

Think about the angels. These beings have served mankind from the beginning and will be there for you to get to know. What would you ask Gabriel or Michael or any one of the other multitudes of angels? Wouldn't you like to hear the testimony of an angel?

And don't forget the Tree of Life. You will eat it's fruit in Heaven. Will we eat it once or every day? And what will the fruit of the Tree of Life taste like?

Don't forget the place that Jesus is preparing for you. It will be better than you could ever imagine.

Keep yourself busy thinking about Heaven and not the corruption of this world!

"Lord Jesus, fill my mind today with thoughts of You and of Heaven. I want to have my mind completely filled with the things that You are preparing for the Day when I see You face to face! And may You, Lord Jesus be praised forever. Amen."

Sunday, November 29, 2015

When Prayer is Forbidden!

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At daybreak the king got up and ran to the pit.  He was anxious and shouted, “Daniel, you were faithful and served your God. Was he able to save you from the lions?”  Daniel answered, “Your Majesty, I hope you live forever!

My God knew that I was innocent, and he sent an angel to keep the lions from eating me. Your Majesty, I have never done anything to hurt you.”  The king was relieved to hear Daniel's voice, and he gave orders for him to be taken out of the pit. Daniel's faith in his God had kept him from being harmed.   And the king ordered the men who had brought charges against Daniel to be thrown into the pit, together with their wives and children. But before they even reached the bottom, the lions ripped them to pieces. 

King Darius then sent this message to all people of every nation and race in the world: “Greetings to all of you!  I command every one in my kingdom to worship and honor the God of Daniel. He is the living God, the one who lives forever. His power and his kingdom will never end.  He rescues people and sets them free by working great miracles.  Daniel's God has rescued him from the power of the lions.”

Daniel 6:19-27

Daniel disobeyed the king's order not to pray to God for the next thirty days and several thousand years later we are still telling the story! Could Daniel possibly have known that day when he went home with the intent to disobey the king's order that it would have such an impact on the world? Frankly, I think not.

Here was the impasse: The king made a law that "could not be changed" and Daniel had a faith that "could not allow" him to obey that law. Daniel could have said, "It is only thirty days and then I will pray again as I have always done." He could have thought, "As long as I don't pray to the king, God will not be offended." But Daniel said neither of those things. Daniel had always prayed and he continued to pray and the result was a Bible story of lasting impact on the lives of millions of people.

In the United States today the "powers that be" have declared, even without making it an official law that we cannot pray in public places. Prayer is banned in public schools and in government buildings and many other places as well.

If Daniel were alive today how would he have responded to our situation? I think Daniel would be praying everywhere they told him not to pray. I think he would obviously disobey the will of those who want to quiet prayer.

What if we like Daniel were to refuse to be quiet in those places that prayer is forbidden? What if all followers of Jesus, like Daniel refused to be silenced? The reason they want to stop prayer today is because Satan knows how powerful it is. The Devil knows that prayer will rock his kingdom to the core and damage his work in the world. He would say "Do anything, but don't pray."

"Lord Jesus, give me the courage of Daniel to stand and pray even when the world around me demands that I be quiet. Help me to trust you to shut the mouths of lions today as you did for Your servant Daniel so many years ago. And may You be praised forever. Amen."

Saturday, November 28, 2015

The Roaring Lion of Sin!

Be humble in the presence of God's mighty power, and he will honor you when the time comes.   God cares for you, so turn all your worries over to him.  Be on your guard and stay awake. Your enemy, the devil, is like a roaring lion, sneaking around to find someone to attack.   But you must resist the devil and stay strong in your faith. You know that all over the world the Lord's followers are suffering just as you are.   But God shows undeserved kindness to everyone. That's why he appointed Christ Jesus to choose you to share in his eternal glory. You will suffer for a while, but God will make you complete, steady, strong, and firm.   God will be in control forever! Amen.

1 Peter 5:6-11

A roaring lion is fairly easy to avoid because you can hear the lion roar from a long way off. Even though the Devil is like a lion that roars, he also sneaks around quietly hoping to attack you when you least expect it.

After you have been a Christian for at least a few years you may become confident that you can identify and avoid the attacks of Satan. That would be like a big game hunter walking through the jungle unaware of the danger and not ready for an attack. If you are not prepared for a lion attack when it happens you will have no time to get ready. And if you are not ready for the Devi's attack when it happens you will not be able to fend off Satan.

If you hear the roaring lion of Sin, but he is nowhere near where you are, don't relax. The Devil can and will attack when you least expect it. Have the Word of God which is the Sword of the Spirit ready in your mind and heart. And be prepared to strike a blow against the enemy with that sword as you win another battle against Satan.

"Lord Jesus, help me to be alert and awake today as I watch for the Roaring Lion of Sin. Prepare my heart and mind to do battle using the weapon of Your Word! And may You, Lord Jesus be praised forever. Amen."

Friday, November 27, 2015

Daily Reminder!

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I saw a new heaven and a new earth. The first heaven and the first earth had disappeared, and so had the sea.   Then I saw New Jerusalem, that holy city, coming down from God in heaven. It was like a bride dressed in her wedding gown and ready to meet her husband.

I heard a loud voice shout from the throne:
God’s home is now with his people. He will live with them, and they will be his own. Yes, God will make his home among his people.  He will wipe all tears from their eyes, and there will be no more death, suffering, crying, or pain. These things of the past are gone forever.

Then the one sitting on the throne said:
I am making everything new. Write down what I have said. My words are true and can be trusted.  Everything is finished! I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will freely give water from the life-giving fountain to everyone who is thirsty.  All who win the victory will be given these blessings. I will be their God, and they will be my people.

Revelation 21:1-7

I need to be reminded every day about the truth of these verses in Revelation. After all the trouble, suffering, pain and even death itself, for those who are "God's people" there will be an Eternity without any of these "things of the past." They will be gone forever!

And that Eternity will be one of continual fellowship with Jesus and unspeakable and unimaginable joys! The greatest pleasures of earth will seem small compared to the smallest joy of Heaven!

So as you see the signs that the time of the End is indeed upon us, let your heart begin to rejoice. There is Eternal Peace at the end of the final storm. Don't be shaken by the birth pains, but be lifted up by the hope that Jesus will soon be here!

"Lord Jesus, do come quickly and take us to be with You forever. Let all the signs of Your coming bring peace to my heart and mind. And may You be praised forever. Amen."

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Word of God or Ways of Men?

I saw another angel come from heaven. This one had great power, and the earth was bright because of his glory.  The angel shouted,“Fallen! Powerful Babylon has fallen and is now the home of demons. It is the den of every filthy spirit and of all unclean birds, and every dirty and hated animal.

Babylon's evil and immoral wine
has made all nations drunk. Every king on earth has slept with her, and every merchant on earth is rich because of her evil desires.”

Then I heard another voice
from heaven shout, “My people, you must escape from Babylon. Don't take part in her sins and share her punishment.

Her sins are piled
as high as heaven. God has remembered the evil she has done.

Treat her as she
has treated others. Make her pay double for what she has done. Make her drink twice as much of what she mixed for others.

That woman honored herself
with a life of luxury.  Reward her now with suffering and pain.“Deep in her heart Babylon said, ‘I am the queen! Never will I be a widow or know what it means to be sad.’ And so, in a single day she will suffer the pain of sorrow, hunger, and death. Fire will destroy her dead body, because her judge is the powerful Lord God.”
Revelation 18:1-8

What makes something a sin? If a whole nation, or even the whole world were to vote and decide that a certain thing will not be illegal and consequently is not a sin, would all those who did that thing then be justified before God?

Absolutely not! The standard for whether or not something is a sin has nothing to do with a "democratic" vote of the people. Sin is sin because God says it is! God's opinion about a matter determines the sinfulness of any action.


You may be a model citizen and have a great reputation with all your fellow citizens and still stand guilty before God of great sin. These verses indicate that there are "national sins" that offend God, but seemingly no one else cares. That is why the "Word of God" must be the standard for your life instead of the "Ways of Men."

As you read the Bible pray that God will show you His ways and how you can please Him in everything that you do. And continually compare your own culture to the Word of God to see if there is anything in your country that is pleasing to men, but offensive to God!

"Lord Jesus, help me to see the things in my life that I must leave behind as I follow You. And may You be praised forever. Amen."

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Panic or Praise?

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In a vision one night, Daniel was shown the dream and its meaning. Then he praised the God who rules from heaven:  “Our God, your name will be praised forever and forever.You are all-powerful, and you know everything.  You control human events—you give rulers their power and take it away, and you are the source of wisdom and knowledge.  “You explain deep mysteries, because even the dark is light to you.  You are the God who was worshiped by my ancestors.  Now I thank you and praise you for making me wise and telling me the king's dream, together with its meaning.”
Daniel 2:19-23

I saw a sign in front of a church building the other day which said "Things are not falling apart, they are falling in place!" 

There is great chaos in the world today.  The "super powers" are walking close to the place where they can fall off the edge into World War III!  Terror is everywhere.  Foolish leaders seem to be in the majority in today's world.  And without miraculous intervention it seems certain that "The End is Near."  And you can come to that conclusion without ever knowing about what the Bible says about the time of the end.

Truthfully, things are falling apart in the world today, but they are also lining up for the return of Jesus Christ and the time when He sets everything straight!   So when you look around and find that your heart is tempted to panic then choose to exchange your panic for praise. The Bible clearly says that just before Jesus returns the world will be a very dark place with trouble like never before.  Without the hope of the return of Jesus Christ and the personal assurance that you belong to Him panic would indeed be appropriate today.  But with Jesus in your heart PRAISE is the best response to everything you see.  Praise God the Father, Praise God the Son and Praise God the Holy Spirit!  Remember the End of this world will be the Beginning of Eternity!

"Lord Jesus, I praise You again today in the midst of a very dark and frightening world for those who do not know You.  But I know You and I know that You are coming again soon to rescue those who are waiting for that Day!  May You be praised forever.  Amen."

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Dead Sea Comes to Life!

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The man said, “Ezekiel, son of man, pay attention to what you've seen.”We walked to the riverbank, where I saw dozens of trees on each side.  The man said:This water flows eastward to the Jordan River valley and empties into the Dead Sea, where it turns the salt water into fresh water.  Wherever this water flows, there will be all kinds of animals and fish, because it will bring life and fresh water to the Dead Sea.  From En-Gedi to Eneglaim, people will fish in the sea and dry their nets along the coast. There will be as many kinds of fish in the Dead Sea as there are in the Mediterranean Sea.   But the marshes along the shore will remain salty, so that people can use the salt from them.  Fruit trees will grow all along this river and produce fresh fruit every month. The leaves will never dry out, because they will always have water from the stream that flows from the temple, and they will be used for healing people.

Ezekiel 47:6-12

The name of the Dead Sea says it all.  There is no life in the Dead Sea.  Nothing can live in those waters.  But when the stream that flows from the Temple of God flows into that sea it will come alive.  The sea that was dead will live!  That is what the stream that flows from out from God will do to your life through the power of the Blood of Jesus!

Because of sin you were as dead as the Dead Sea.  Nothing good could grow in you.  You were without hope and your only expectation was to spend Eternity in the fires of Hell.  But when the life giving waters began to pour into your life everything changed.  You were no longer hopeless.  Jesus touched you and your new life in Him began.

If someone who knew the Dead Sea well, came to it's shores and found that the Dead Sea was alive, what would they do?  Of course, they would ask: How did this happen?  How could that which was dead come to life?  So, after Jesus touches you and brings a dead man to life those who knew you before the power of Jesus came to you life will ask: How could this man who was dead come to life? 

That is when you tell them about Jesus! 

"Lord Jesus, I was dead in my sins, but You brought me to life through the power of Your Cross.  And so I praise Your Holy Name today and tomorrow and forever.  Amen."

Monday, November 23, 2015

Spiritual Stockholm Syndrome

For you know that God paid a ransom to save you from the empty life you inherited from your ancestors. And it was not paid with mere gold or silver, which lose their value.  It was the precious blood of Christ, the sinless, spotless Lamb of God.  God chose him as your ransom long before the world began, but now in these last days he has been revealed for your sake.  Through Christ you have come to trust in God. And you have placed your faith and hope in God because he raised Christ from the dead and gave him great glory.  You were cleansed from your sins when you obeyed the truth, so now you must show sincere love to each other as brothers and sisters. Love each other deeply with all your heart.  For you have been born again, but not to a life that will quickly end. Your new life will last forever because it comes from the eternal, living word of God.

1 Peter 1:18-23 (New Living Translation)

According to Wikipedia the Stockholm Syndrome is "a psychological phenomenon in which hostages express empathy and sympathy and have positive feelings toward their captors, sometimes to the point of defending and identifying with the captors."

All men are held hostage by the father of lies. Satan has captured through the power of sin everyone who has yet to be set free by the Blood of Jesus. The Devil brings only death and destruction to all men, but many have positive feelings toward this enemy of all humanity!

If you are one that is still held hostage in this world, then wake up and see that Satan has no good plans for your life. He only has plans for your death and it will be an eternal death!

The Good News is that Jesus stands at the door of your heart and by His sacrifice on the Cross has unlocked that door so that you can open it and let Him in! And when you do, you will be free for the rest of your life, which will be forever!

"Lord Jesus, knock again on the door of my heart and give me the courage to open that door and be set free by Your Eternal Sacrifice! And may You be praised forever. Amen."

Sunday, November 22, 2015

You Can See in the Darkness!

You used to be like people living in the dark, but now you are people of the light because you belong to the Lord. So act like people of the light and make your light shine. Be good and honest and truthful, as you try to please the Lord.  Don't take part in doing those worthless things that are done in the dark. Instead, show how wrong they are.   It is disgusting even to talk about what is done in the dark.   But the light will show what these things are really like.   Light shows up everything, just as the Scriptures say, “Wake up from your sleep and rise from death.  Then Christ will shine on you.”

Ephesians 5:8-14

There is a stark contrast between daylight and dark. When there is light you can see clearly where you should put your foot safely for your next step and you can see the things that would get in your way to make you stumble. If the moon is covered by clouds and you have no flashlight to guide your way, walking at night in the darkness can be a dangerous proposition.

The light that comes to those who put their faith in Jesus is like a good pair of "night vision" goggles. As a follower of Jesus you can see in the darkness as if it were daylight, but other men can see nothing at all. They think you are foolish for walking through life as if you can see what comes next. The world finds it hard to believe that you really can see in the darkness.

Today the world is very dark, but the light that comes through faith in Jesus Christ is like the sun itself shinning on the brightest day of Summer!

"Lord Jesus, shine Your light on me and in my heart today so that I may see the way You are leading me as well as the ways that Satan would try to cause me to stumble. And may You Lord Jesus be praised forever. Amen.

At Peace Forever!

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So put on all the armor that God gives. Then when that evil day comes, you will be able to defend yourself. And when the battle is over, you will still be standing firm. Be ready! Let the truth be like a belt around your waist, and let God's justice protect you like armor. Your desire to tell the good news about peace should be like shoes on your feet.

 Ephesians 6:13-15

When you are not at peace with God, then you are in a continual state of war and turmoil.  But when the peace of God fills your heart and mind, nothing can shake you.  The Good News really is a Gospel of Peace.  Because of the sacrifice of Jesus on the Cross you can be at peace with your Creator and confident that His love for you is the overriding principle in your life!

Peace with God cancels every point of confusion in your heart and settles your mind in a world of continual turmoil!

If you are trying to find peace by "making peace" with the world around you, you will never succeed.  There will always be wars and rumors of wars!  But Jesus died and rose again so that you can find peace even while the war is raging!  Peace can come to your heart and life the very moment you stop trusting yourself and give your heart and mind to Jesus Christ.  When Jesus controls you, His peace consoles you!  Then you will be at peace now and forever!

"Lord Jesus, let Your peace rule in my heart and mind.  Control my life so that Your peace will control my heart!  And may You, Lord Jesus be praised forever.  Amen."

Friday, November 20, 2015

Imitation Christians!

Do as God does. After all, you are his dear children.   Let love be your guide. Christ loved us and offered his life for us as a sacrifice that pleases God.

You are God’s people, so don’t let it be said that any of you are immoral or indecent or greedy.  Don’t use dirty or foolish or filthy words. Instead, say how thankful you are.  Being greedy, indecent, or immoral is just another way of worshiping idols. You can be sure that people who behave in this way will never be part of the kingdom that belongs to Christ and to God.

Ephesians 5:1-5

When you grow up enough to call yourself a "man" or "woman," you will find that you will begin to see your own father or mother in the way you act and even think. Part of the process of life itself is that you become like your parents! And if you are a child of God the same thing is true. The longer you live as a Christ Follower the more you will see that you are becoming like your Heavenly Father!

Some people think that you become like God by imitating the life of Jesus. That may be true in some ways, but mostly it is because He has put His Holy Spirit in your heart and has changed your very nature from lost to saved! Since you have decided to give your heart to Jesus, He responds by giving you a brand new life in Him! You become a new man or woman and everyone can see the difference!

You certainly should do as Jesus did on this earth, but you are not an "Imitation Christian." An imitation is not the real thing. And as a follower of Jesus Christ you can and must be the real thing, not just a copy!

"Lord Jesus help me to walk today as a true believer and not simply an imitation of what I should be. And may You, Lord Jesus be praised forever. Amen."

Thursday, November 19, 2015

If I Lose My Life for Jesus!

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When the Lamb opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of everyone who had been killed for speaking God's message and telling about their faith.  They shouted, “Master, you are holy and faithful! How long will it be before you judge and punish the people of this earth who killed us?”   Then each of those who had been killed was given a white robe and told to rest for a little while. They had to wait until the complete number of the Lord's other servants and followers would be killed.

Revelation 6:9-11

There is one way to make sure that you do not become a martyr for Jesus.  That way is this: Never speak God's message and never tell about your faith. 

According to these verses sometimes telling others what God is saying and about your faith will result in your death!  The opposition to Jesus Christ is not just an intellectual disagreement.  Those who oppose Jesus, sometimes are willing to kill Christians.  If staying alive is the most important thing in your life, then you shouldn't speak the message of God and you must not tell of your own faith.  

But if you are committed to the spread of the Gospel throughout the world, you need to remember that you might have to give up your life as the result! 

If you, however are about your Father's business as Jesus Himself was you need not fear the Enemy.  Satan will cause you no harm unless God permits it!  And if God allows the Devil to strike a blow at you or even kill you, then He will also reward you for your faithfulness!

Set your heart and mind to the business of telling God's message and declaring your faith to everyone you meet.  Let God protect you from all who would do you harm or trust Him to receive you into His loving arms if you "lose your head" in the battle for righteousness!

"Lord Jesus, give me great boldness to proclaim God's message and the peace to know that You are with me always even if I lose my life in your service!  And may You, Lord Jesus be praised forever.  Amen."

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

In Jesus Name!

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These are evil times, so make every minute count.  Don't be stupid. Instead, find out what the Lord wants you to do.  Don't destroy yourself by getting drunk, but let the Spirit fill your life.  When you meet together, sing psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs, as you praise the Lord with all your heart.   Always use the name of our Lord Jesus Christ to thank God the Father for everything.

Ephesians 5:16-20

Do you use the Name of Jesus when you pray?  I have heard it said that God doesn't hear you unless you say "In Jesus Name" at the conclusion of a prayer.  And I know those who almost never say those words, but will tell you that they never pray except in the Name of Jesus.

The phrase "In Jesus Name" is not three magic words that sends your prayer through the gates of Heaven to the throne of God.  When it comes to prayer, the important thing is Who you know not how you say it!

When you give your heart, mind and life itself to Jesus Christ, He gives you the right to approach the throne of God in His Name!  It is a marvelous and really unbelievable benefit that comes from having faith in Jesus.   You can tell God Himself what you think about your life and the life situations of those around you.  And you can ask Him to apply His mercy, grace and love to those problems!  And then you can say to God, "I come to You in the Name of Jesus!"

Many Christians are like a man who carries a thousand dollars in his pocket for an emergency, but never uses it.  The power of God as accessed through prayer can be just as ignored as that stash of money.  If you never ask God for Him to touch your life with His power, you will never know the wonder of seeing God Almighty work in your life!

"Lord, may Your power today be seen in my life and in those situations that seem so impossible.  And may You be praised forever.  Amen."

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Ready to do Battle!

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Such a large crowd of witnesses is all around us! So we must get rid of everything that slows us down, especially the sin that just won't let go. And we must be determined to run the race that is ahead of us.   We must keep our eyes on Jesus, who leads us and makes our faith complete. He endured the shame of being nailed to a cross, because he knew later on he would be glad he did. Now he is seated at the right side of God's throne!  So keep your mind on Jesus, who put up with many insults from sinners. Then you won't get discouraged and give up.

Hebrews 12:1-3

What is slowing you down in your "race" to the finish of this life?  If you are a follower of Jesus Christ you must "lose the weight" that is holding you back and get rid of everything that is keeping you from being what God intends that you be. 

Satan has a favorite temptation in his arsenal against you, because it is the one to which you give in so easily!  You know what it is and you know that it is the one you must lay aside if you are to run the race as Jesus desires.

In the war of Good versus Evil your flesh is on the side of Satan as it tries to pull your spirit away from Jesus!   Your struggle is to submit your flesh and its desires to the Spirit of God.  Let God have His way with you.  Do what He tells you to do.  Go where He tells you to go!  When you have let God have victory in your own heart, only then are you ready to do battle in the world around you!

"Lord Jesus, help me today to lay aside the sin that so easily trips me up!  Uphold me by Your power so that I may be fit for the battle around me.  And may You be praised forever.  Amen."  

Friday, November 13, 2015

No Freedom of Religion!

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From the temple I heard a voice shout to the seven angels, “Go and empty the seven bowls of God's anger on the earth.”   The first angel emptied his bowl on the earth. At once ugly and painful sores broke out on everyone who had the mark of the beast and worshiped the idol.

Revelation 16:1-2

There is a widespread misconception about the nature of Almighty God.  Many people believe that God has no concern about whether or not He is the one who is worshiped by those He created.  That is not and has never been true.  "Freedom of Religion" in the history of the United States originally meant that you had the freedom to worship God as you understood the Bible.  It did not mean that we would stand for and die for your right to go to Hell!

The Bible does not say that God is only interested in how sincere you are about worshiping Baal or any other false god.  Heaven is not prepared for those who are "honest" in their rejection of Jesus Christ.

"Freedom of Religion" today is just another form of being "politically correct."  The Bible certainly does allow for different understandings of your faith in Jesus.  Some are convicted that they should not eat meat, and some are certain that eating meat is absolutely allowed by God.  You can walk in relationship with Jesus and have either position.  But to embrace and fellowship false gods in the name of Freedom of Religion is not pleasing to God. 

God Himself gives lost men the right to believe a lie and worship that which is false, but He also gives me the command to preach the good news of Jesus Christ to those who are lost.  Their right to believe the lie does not remove my obligation to warn them of the fires of Hell!

You cannot stop men from choosing rebellion against God and the eternal fires of Hell, but you can make certain that they do not go to Hell without first being warned of their sin and its consequences!

"Lord Jesus, give me the courage to stand today and proclaim the truth of Your Word and call the lost to come back to You and be saved.  And may You Lord Jesus be praised forever.  Amen."

Thursday, November 12, 2015

When Trouble Comes, Run!

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The Lord protects his people, and they can come to him in times of trouble.  The Lord helps his people and saves them from the wicked because they run to him.

Psalms 37:39-40

Do you remember the pictures of people running from the destruction after the attack on the World Trade Center?  They were covered in dust and were literally running for their lives.

When trouble comes it is the very human response to run away.  Your feet try to get you as far away from the difficulty as you possibly can.  But when you become a follower of Jesus Christ your response is still to run when trouble comes, but not away from the trouble.  When bad times come, Christians run to God! 

If you just run away from the problems you will certainly find yourself running into more problems.  There is no real peace in seeking comfort from the world.  But when you run to Jesus you can rest in His arms, knowing for certain that nothing can touch you without His permission!

If you are in the middle of turmoil and trouble in your life right now, then stop trying to run away from your problems and turn your heart and mind to Jesus Christ and run to Him!  It is there you will find rest and peace and comfort and calm.  It is with Jesus that you will find a shelter from the storm and a place where your heart can rest!

"Jesus, show me how today to run to You!  Put Your hand in the middle of my back and push me into Your arms!  Settle my heart with the peace that comes from resting and leaning on You, my Lord and Savior!  And may You be praised forever.  Amen."

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

A Word for Every Moment!

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The king of the north will invade many countries, including Egypt, and he will take its rich treasures of gold and silver. He will also conquer Libya and Ethiopia.   But he will be alarmed by news from the east and the north, and he will become furious and cause great destruction.   After this, he will set up camp between the Mediterranean Sea and Mount Zion. Then he will be destroyed, and no one will be able to save him.

Daniel 11:42-45

If you are aware of what is going on in the world and you read the Bible you will often find that the Word of God seems to describe current events!  I am not saying that these verses in the Book of Daniel are talking about our time, but the Bible does provide commentary on every generation on earth from the beginning to the end!

And I think, even more important is the fact that God has written relevant guidance for every day, and even moment of your life!  You cannot pick up a Bible and find that for your immediate problem, God has nothing to say!

When a baby hears his father's voice he is calmed and quieted even though he really knows nothing of what his father is saying.  During the last hours of my mother's life, we were told that the end was near.   Waiting for that moment was indeed a time of stress.  I remember picking up a Bible and reading as we waited.  I don't even remember what I read, but when I heard the voice of the Lord I was calmed and quieted like a baby hearing his father! 

Listen for the voice of the Lord today, not just for understanding, but to let You know that He is near and that since He is near you can be at peace.

"Lord Jesus, let me hear Your voice today!  And if You want to let me understand what I am hearing, then that is wonderful.  But, it is enough just to hear the sound of Your voice in my heart!  Bless Your Holy Name, now and forevermore.  Amen."


Monday, November 9, 2015

Songs in Your Heart!


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Our Lord, you bless everyone whose sins you forgive and wipe away.  You bless them by saying, “You told me your sins, without trying to hide them, and now I forgive you. ”Before I confessed my sins, my bones felt limp, and I groaned all day long.  Night and day your hand weighed heavily on me, and my strength was gone as in the summer heat.  So I confessed my sins and told them all to you.  I said, “I'll tell the Lord each one of my sins.”Then you forgave me and took away my guilt.  We worship you, Lord, and we should always pray whenever we find out that we have sinned.  Then we won't be swept away by a raging flood.  You are my hiding place!  You protect me from trouble, and you put songs in my heart because you have saved me.

Psalm 32:1-7

Has Jesus put songs in your heart?  Has Jesus become your hiding place?  Does He protect you from trouble?  Jesus does all those things in exchange for confessing your sins to Him. 

Imagine that you were guilty of some terrible crime, but your lawyer was able to convince a jury that you were not the one who did it.  You and God would still know that you were the guilty one and that justice would still demand that you paid the price.  That price would at least include a lack of peace and certainly troubled sleep for the rest of your life on earth!  Guilt or innocence is not determined by the ruling of a jury.

The "Good News" of the Cross of Jesus Christ is that because of His sacrifice your guilt is taken away.  You are not a guilty man who has not been convicted.  You were a guilty man, but now you are not!  You are as innocent as a new born baby even though your sins were many. 

And then Jesus puts songs in your heart.  He becomes your hiding place and protects you from trouble.  Forgiveness is wonderful, but being free from guilt is reason for an outburst of praise for the Lord!  The burden of the unforgiven man is that he must carry all his guilt and at the same time try to hide it from everyone around him. 

If you have not done so, then right now, stop everything and confess your sins to Jesus.  Tell Him everything that you have done and thought that you know is wrong.  He will forgive you and take away your guilt.  Then your heart will fill with songs of joy as you find Jesus to be a special hiding place from the cares of this world.  And best of all, your guilt will be gone!

"Lord Jesus, I want my heart to be pure before You.  Show me all my sins so that I can confess them to You and be free from the guilt and have my heart filled with songs from You!  May You, Lord Jesus be praised forever.  Amen."

Sunday, November 8, 2015

What Does Your Heart Long For?

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The Lord says: Don't brag about your wisdom or strength or wealth.    If you feel you must brag, then have enough sense to brag about worshiping me, the Lord.  What I like best is showing kindness, justice, and mercy to everyone on earth.   Someday I will punish the nations of Egypt, Edom, Ammon, and Moab, and the tribes of the desert. The men of these nations are circumcised, but they don't worship me. And it's the same with you people of Judah. Your bodies are circumcised, but your hearts are unchanged.

Jeremiah 9:23-26

God gave His people Israel the sign of circumcision as way to mark those who belonged to Him.  In these verses the Lord says there are those who have the outward mark of belonging to the Lord, but their hearts are not changed at all. 

Do you have the outward signs that you are a follower of Jesus Christ?  Do you live a life that is morally pure and upright?  Do you treat other men as you would have them treat you?  Are you honest in all your dealings and careful to obey the law?  But what about your heart? 

If all your actions are "right" but your heart is "wrong," what good is it?  Right actions will follow a right heart, but they are no substitute for it!  Does your heart long for the Lord or does it desire to walk in the world and still receive the blessings of God?

A man whose body is healthy in every way cannot live if his heart is dead!  Ask Jesus to minister His healing to your heart so that you may be whole and complete before Him!

"Lord Jesus, check my heart and give me the desire to give You all of my heart, in every way!  I want to seek You more every day.  And may You be praised forever.  Amen."

Saturday, November 7, 2015

Everyone Will Know God!

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If the first agreement with God had been all right, there would not have been any need for another one.  But the Lord found fault with it and said, “I tell you the time will come, when I will make a new agreement with the people of Israel and the people of Judah.  It won't be like the agreement that I made with their ancestors, when I took them by the hand and led them out of Egypt.  They broke their agreement with me, and I stopped caring about them!   “But now I tell the people of Israel this is my new agreement: ‘The time will come when I, the Lord, will write my laws on their minds and hearts.  I will be their God, and they will be my people.  Not one of them will have to teach another to know me, their Lord.’  “All of them will know me, no matter who they are.  I will treat them with kindness, even though they are wicked.  I will forget their sins.”

 Hebrews 8:7-12

These verses are hard to understand.  It describes the "new agreement" as a time when everyone will know God.  You won't have to teach other people about God, because they will all know Him.  It will be a time when He will write His laws on the minds and hearts of people. 

As I write these words I know for certain that all men do not know Him!  The time when all men will know Him may be coming soon, but it is not now!  There are even those who call on the Name of the Lord but will hear Him say "Depart from Me.  I never knew you!"

My opinion, for what it's worth, is that these verses are talking about a time when we will all see Jesus with our eyes!  It will be quite obvious to everyone that Jesus not only exists, but we will know what He wants from all of us! 

But until that Day comes I must encourage all men to know Him!  If you do not know Jesus, then today seek Him with all your heart.  The Bible promises that if you seek Him you will find Him!  And when You find Jesus you will have everything you could ever want and everything you could ever need! 

"Lord Jesus, I do know You now, but I want to know You even better today.  Show me more of who You are and what You are like as I walk through this day.  And may the Glory be Yours forever and ever!  Amen."

Friday, November 6, 2015

Stand With Daniel!

Finally, they said to one another, “We will never be able to bring any charge against Daniel, unless it has to do with his religion.”  They all went to the king and said: “Your Majesty, we hope you live forever!
All of your officials, leaders, advisers, and governors agree that you should make a law forbidding anyone to pray to any god or human except you for the next 30 days. Everyone who disobeys this law must be thrown into a pit of lions.   Order this to be written and then sign it, so it cannot be changed, just as no written law of the Medes and Persians can be changed.”  So King Darius made the law and had it written down.  

Daniel heard about the law, but when he returned home, he went upstairs and prayed in front of the window that faced Jerusalem. In the same way that he had always done, he knelt down in prayer three times a day, giving thanks to God.

Daniel 6:5-10

If you live in a country that is openly opposed to Jesus Christ, then perhaps you find it rather easy to identify the laws which must not be honored as a Christian. You also know that persecution for your faith in Jesus is more than likely! You may indeed be challenged to renounce Jesus or suffer greatly for not doing so!

But if you live in a land which "officially" recognizes freedom of religion you must also watch out for the problem Daniel had. The law that the king signed did not suspend praying to God forever, it was just for 30 days. So why couldn't Daniel just obey the law and wait for one month before he prayed to God? And perhaps he could have just closed the windows so no one would know he was praying. It would have been easy for Daniel to hide his prayers from men so that he would not have to go to the lion's den! But Daniel would not compromise his faith, even for 30 days!

In the United States we hear often about those who are being told they cannot pray to God in public where anyone can see them. And there are those who refuse to obey those orders and pray anyway! But I wonder how many among us are not being like Daniel? Are you afraid of the lion's den? Are you telling yourself that the man made rule about restricting prayer is not really in conflict with your walk of faith? Or will you be one of those who will stand with Daniel in Heaven to be recognized for risking everything to honor the Lord Jesus Christ?

"Lord Jesus, help me today to listen to Your Word and not the words of men when they contradict You. May I be like Daniel and have the courage to stand with Daniel even if I am threatened with a pit of lions! And may You be praised forever. Amen."