Saturday, December 31, 2016

Happiness in Heaven!

Then Jesus told them this story:  If any of you has a hundred sheep, and one of them gets lost, what will you do? Won't you leave the ninety-nine in the field and go look for the lost sheep until you find it?  And when you find it, you will be so glad that you will put it on your shoulder  and carry it home. Then you will call in your friends and neighbors and say, "Let's celebrate! I've found my lost sheep."  Jesus said, "In the same way there is more happiness in heaven because of one sinner who turns to God than over ninety-nine good people who don't need to."

Luke 15: 3 - 7

Also in Matthew 25: 21b the Master in the parable says to his servant.

Come and share in my happiness!

Did you know that you can bring happiness to Heaven when you turn away from your sin and decide to follow Jesus?  Heaven is pleased with your example.  

You will also share in the Happiness of Heaven when you leave this world and enter into the joy of the Lord!  When a disciple of Christ leaves this earth to travel to their home in Heaven, humans mourn because we will see them no more on this earth.  But the Homecoming of arriving in Heaven to be with Jesus and with all those who have gone on before you must be truly amazing!  

The Bible says that Abraham died and was gathered to his people.  As a child of God, you will not only go to Heaven, but you will also be gathered to your people!  When you go to a 50th class reunion, you see those you knew well as young people, but now they are old. When you are gathered to your people in Heaven, you will see believers you knew on this earth, but they will there be eternally young, and you will be too! 

So, you will pass from this life and all it’s trouble, and receive a new body and a promise that you will never again experience pain, or suffering and death!  

If you know a fellow believer in Jesus who has recently passed from this life to the next, go ahead and weep, but not as those who have no hope!  Even though you are sad outwardly, let your heart rejoice for the great prize given to those who leave here as followers of Jesus!

And you can know for sure that there will be a gathering where you will be re-united with the one you love, and this time it will be forever!

“Lord Jesus, give me the great assurance to know that on the other side of death, for Your children is Eternal and complete Joy! And may You Jesus, be praised now and forever.  Amen.” 

Friday, December 30, 2016

Never as Good as a Kiss!

We don't know everything, and our prophecies are not complete.  But what is perfect will someday appear, and what isn't perfect will then disappear.  When we were children, we thought and reasoned as children do. But when we grew up, we quit our childish ways.  Now all we can see of God is like a cloudy picture in a mirror. Later we will see him face to face. We don't know everything, but then we will, just as God completely understands us.  For now there are faith, hope, and love. But of these three, the greatest is love.

1 Corinthians 13: 9 - 13

If you are experiencing this blog via the Internet, you are already aware of a thing called Facebook.  If you use Facebook, you can “post” messages and pictures about yourself and read and look at those of others.  And they are not communications from total strangers, but rather from your “friends.”  It is indeed addictive when someone “likes” your post or sends a message or request that you be their friend.  Even with all the back and forth information there is a personal connection that is not possible on Facebook.  Lonely and depressed people can do quite well on Facebook without anyone knowing that they are still lonely and quite depressed!  It is a substitute for real relationships.

Vital and alive relationships might start on Facebook, but they quickly become personal and face to face communion.

Are you simply a Facebook Christian?  Do you interact with the Father by reading His posts in the Bible and then craft prayers hoping He will “like” what you said?  The song “What a Friend We Have In Jesus” was not talking about a Facebook friend!  When Jesus is your friend you can ask Him anything.  You can find out what He thinks about even small things in your life.  Being a friend of Jesus means that you can sit quietly and say nothing to each other while you feel His presence all around you.  Jesus is a friend who never goes “off-line” and one who will never “de-friend” you.  

Certainly, reading the messages from God in the Bible is an important thing in your life as a Christian, but never forget that a love letter is never as good as a kiss!

“Lord Jesus, help me to experience You today as a real and living part of my life!  Thank You for sending Your Word as a Love Letter, but thank You as well for holding my life in Your arms!  And may You Jesus, be praised forever.  Amen.” 

Thursday, December 29, 2016

Jesus Will Do Anything You Ask!

Philip said, "Lord, show us the Father. That is all we need."   Jesus replied: Philip, I have been with you for a long time. Don't you know who I am? If you have seen me, you have seen the Father. How can you ask me to show you the Father?  Don't you believe that I am one with the Father and that the Father is one with me? What I say isn't said on my own. The Father who lives in me does these things.  Have faith in me when I say that the Father is one with me and that I am one with the Father. Or else have faith in me simply because of the things I do. I tell you for certain that if you have faith in me, you will do the same things that I am doing. You will do even greater things, now that I am going back to the Father.
 Ask me, and I will do whatever you ask. This way the Son will bring honor to the Father.  I will do whatever you ask me to do.

John 14: 8 - 14

For many years I have considered these verses and wondered what the really mean.  Can a person who has faith in Jesus do the same things that Jesus did?  And what about the statement Jesus made about doing greater things?  How can that be?

Then Jesus even made it more difficult to grasp when He said, “I will do whatever you ask me to do.”  Did Jesus really mean that He will do anything I ask?  

The next verse in John 14 makes it much easier to understand.  It says, “Jesus said to his disciples: If you love me, you will do as I command.”  

The only way to know what Jesus meant when He said He would do anything you ask is to truly love Him and obey His every command!  Then, you will be able to understand how to ask Him for something, . . . .anything!  

“Lord Jesus, I want to love You and obey You in everything.  Give me a heart and mind so turned to You, that I will only ask You for the things that You know I can have and that You desire to give me!  May You, Jesus be praised forever!  Amen.”

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Consumed by Love!

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You are my God. I worship you. In my heart, I long for you, as I would long for a stream in a scorching desert.  I have seen your power and your glory in the place of worship.  Your love means more than life to me, and I praise you.   As long as I live, I will pray to you.  I will sing joyful praises and be filled with excitement like a guest at a banquet.   I think about you before I go to sleep, and my thoughts turn to you during the night.

Psalm 63: 1 - 6

These verses sound like a man in love!  The love that a man has for a woman is certainly, at least a shadow of the love that a man can have for God!  

Love is a lifelong commitment. Love does have a beginning, but an end of love is always a tragedy!   Love is greater than life itself, and a man in love is willing to give up his life for the one he loves!  Love is not about getting, it is always about giving!  

The one you love is always in your thoughts!  Your love is the last thought before you go to sleep and fills your dreams at night!  

A “good marriage” is an earthly picture of the love you can have with your Creator!  That’s why Satan wants so desperately to destroy and pervert marriage!

Remember this: It is totally appropriate for your love of Jesus Christ to consume your every waking thought and even your dreams at night!  Let your relationship with Him dominate everything you do every day!  Be ready to sacrifice even your life because of your love of Jesus!  If you do, you will be blessed forever with that same Eternal Love!

“Lord Jesus, thank You for letting me love You with everything that I am.  May this day be one of loving You and living to walk in Your Will.  Praise Your Holy Name forever.  Amen.”

Monday, December 26, 2016

Party in Your Heart!

Fig trees may no longer bloom, or vineyards produce grapes; olive trees may be fruitless, and harvest time a failure; sheep pens may be empty, and cattle stalls vacant-- but I will still celebrate because the LORD God saves me.  The LORD gives me strength. He makes my feet as sure as those of a deer, and he helps me stand on the mountains.

Habakkuk 3: 17 - 19

We sometimes call it “Murphy’s Law.”  That is, a time when everything that can go wrong, does!  These verses in Habakkuk talk about a time when drought and famine and failure is everywhere you look!  

Even in the midst of a total meltdown of life itself a child of God can celebrate!  It is not the silly kind of celebration with a party and cake, but it is a celebration nonetheless!  Followers of Jesus can “party” in their hearts with the knowledge that they are destined for an Eternal Home with Jesus where all the troubles of this world will be left far behind!

Right behind the joy of meeting Jesus, face to face will be the joy of being “Gathered to Your People” like the Bible says Abraham was!  For Christians, death itself is only a temporary separation!  As you grow older, and feel life slipping away and the number of your remaining days on this earth dwindling down to only a few, if you love Jesus, you can celebrate that the time of you're leaving this earth is soon!

And oh yes, you will be able to thank Habakkuk for these encouraging words.

“Thank You Jesus, that I can celebrate on the most difficult days, because I know You will come to take me home with You forever!  Praise Your Holy Name!  Amen.”


Sunday, December 25, 2016

Marching to the Drumbeat of Heaven!

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This is how Jesus Christ was born. A young woman named Mary was engaged to Joseph from King David's family. But before they were married, she learned that she was going to have a baby by God's Holy Spirit.  Joseph was a good man and did not want to embarrass Mary in front of everyone. So he decided to quietly call off the wedding.  While Joseph was thinking about this, an angel from the Lord came to him in a dream. The angel said, "Joseph, the baby that Mary will have is from the Holy Spirit. Go ahead and marry her.  Then after her baby is born, name him Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins."

Matthew 1: 18 - 21

The beauty of the birth of Jesus Christ was marred in the eyes of the world by the quite “obvious truth” that Mary became pregnant by someone other than Joseph.  And, if they didn’t think that Mary had been immoral, they at least thought Joseph had been intimate with Mary before they were married.  Either way, the most glorious and wonderful conception of a baby ever was seen as the result of someone’s sin!  

When you yield your heart to Jesus Christ and your life for the fulfillment of His will, how will those around you judge what they see?  As you embark on a life of living by the miraculous power of God instead of your own human strength, at the least you will look like a person who has lost his sanity.  And of course, like they did in the case of Mary, you may be judged to be a sinner!

Walking through your life on earth while marching to the drumbeat of Heaven is perhaps the greatest difficulty of following Jesus.  The standards and expectations of Eternity are not really compatible with the rules of humanity, established by the world around you!  As a child of God, walking in the light and being led by the Holy Spirit, you see those still caught in the world as extremely foolish.  And people who are not followers of Jesus see Christians the same way!  

It is only when the world sees the Power of God working in your life that they come to suspect that there may be truth and substance to what you believe!  Like Mary, the mother of Jesus you must look at what God is doing through you and not at what other people think of your life!  

“Lord Jesus, thank You for giving me the example of living a life that cannot be understood by the world around me.  May You Jesus be praised forever!  Amen.”

Saturday, December 24, 2016

Easy Access to My Heart!

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Isaiah the prophet wrote about John when he said, "In the desert someone is shouting, 'Get the road ready for the Lord! Make a straight path for him.  Fill up every valley and level every mountain and hill. Straighten the crooked paths and smooth out the rough roads.  Then everyone will see the saving power of God.' "

Isaiah 40: 4 - 6

What was John the Baptist talking about when he declared that we should “Get the road ready for the Lord!” and “Make a straight path for him?” Frankly, I have never really thought about what John said and considered that it would apply to my life!  

There are many things, over which I have control that get in the way of God having His way with me!  If I am serious about wanting Jesus to be my Lord and Savior then I will do everything I can do to clear the path for Him to have His Way with me!  

What will happen when I “Fill up every valley and level every mountain and hill?”  What difference will it make when I “Straighten the crooked paths and smooth out the rough roads?”  Well, you see, then I and everyone else will see the saving power of God!  

Perhaps, another way of saying it would be this.  Give Jesus easy access to your heart and let Him be the captain of your ship!  When you do, you and everyone around you will be blessed!

“Lord Jesus, help me today to make it easy for You to get to my heart!  And may You, Jesus be praised forever.  Amen.”

Thursday, December 22, 2016

A Pawn in the Plan of God!

About that time Emperor Augustus gave orders for the names of all the people to be listed in record books. These first records were made when Quirinius was governor of Syria. Everyone had to go to their own hometown to be listed. So Joseph had to leave Nazareth in Galilee and go to Bethlehem in Judea. Long ago Bethlehem had been King David's hometown, and Joseph went there because he was from David's family.  Mary was engaged to Joseph and traveled with him to Bethlehem. She was soon going to have a baby, and while they were there, she gave birth to her first-born son. She dressed him in baby clothes and laid him on a bed of hay, because there was no room for them in the inn.

Luke 2: 1 - 7

When the Roman Emperor Augustus made the decision to require everyone to go to their hometown to record their names on a list, he was simply a pawn in the plan of God!  The prophets had predicted that Jesus would be born in Bethlehem and the Will of God orchestrated human events to make that happen!  If Mary had been engaged to someone other than Joseph the Bethlehem birth might not have happened.  It was important that she was engaged to a man who would have to take her to Bethlehem at the time when Jesus was due!

How does mankind have “free will” and still be used by God to accomplish His will on planet earth?  The answer to that question is perhaps one of life’s most difficult things to ponder.   A simple answer would be that you do have the freedom to reject Jesus, but not the freedom to keep Him from using you to accomplish His ultimate purposes on this earth!

The choice you have is this:  You can be used by God like Augustus was and you will do things that further His goals without even knowing it.  Or you can be like Mary and Joseph and willingly yield to the Will of God in your life as you choose to belong to Him!  Either way, God will use you, but being His willing servant will yield an Eternal Blessing!

“Lord Jesus, may I today be one of those who chooses to be used by You in everything I do, so that You may be Glorified now and forever.  Amen.”

Monday, December 19, 2016

Not A Dream At All!

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.

Revelation 21: 3 - 6

If you are a follower of Jesus Christ, there will come a moment when there will be no more death, suffering, crying or pain.  Everything will be new!  There will be no more corruption and decay.  Nothing will be broken and in need of repair.  The frustration of living on this dying earth will go away and be replaced by the total satisfaction of living in the presence of God Almighty!  

Your first reaction to the reality of living with God in Heaven may be to think that it is a dream!  But the dream goes on and you come to know that this wonderful dream is not a dream at all, but is the new and eternal reality!

Your job on this earth is not to work to qualify for Heaven.  Jesus paid that price and if you love and believe in Him and are obedient to His commands you will go there.  Your task is to make yourself ready for Heaven.  In doing that, you will draw many others to know Jesus as well!

“Lord Jesus, help me to be ready for Heaven, so that when that Day comes I will be perfectly at peace with You forever!  May Your Name be praised!  Amen.”  


Sunday, December 18, 2016

Beyond the Possible!

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Peter now realized what had happened, and he said, "I am certain that the Lord sent his angel to rescue me from Herod and from everything the Jewish leaders planned to do to me."  Then Peter went to the house of Mary the mother of John whose other name was Mark. Many of the Lord's followers had come together there and were praying.  Peter knocked on the gate, and a servant named Rhoda came to answer.  When she heard Peter's voice, she was too excited to open the gate. She ran back into the house and said that Peter was standing there.  "You are crazy!" everyone told her. But she kept saying that it was Peter. Then they said, "It must be his angel."  But Peter kept on knocking, until finally they opened the gate. They saw him and were completely amazed. 

Acts 12: 11 - 16

For months and months we prayed for Lois because she had suffered a problem in her brain that left her with the fundamental capabilities of a small child.  Then one day her husband called me and proclaimed that “Lois is healed!”  I am embarrassed to say that I didn’t believe him.  I didn’t dispute his claim, but we didn’t rush over to their house to see this miracle, and that is what it was!  But a couple of days later when we saw them at church, it was indeed true.  Lois was healed, and not by the doctors!

The amazing, miraculous power of God is sometimes hard to believe, even for those of us who have accepted Jesus as our Lord.  

So, I would ask myself, and you, are our expectations of what God can and will do in this world too low?  Do we think that God will answer our prayers by only doing things that can be also done by humans?  

Let yourself believe in an “Almighty” God who can truly do more than you can ask or even think!  There is nothing too hard for God!

“Thank You Jesus, that You are indeed greater than all our imaginations!  Help me today to believe in You even beyond that which is possible.  Praise Your Name forever.  Amen.”

Thursday, December 15, 2016

No Problem Too Big for Jesus!

Jesus returned to Galilee with the power of the Spirit. News about him spread everywhere.  He taught in the Jewish meeting places, and everyone praised him. Jesus went back to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, and as usual he went to the meeting place on the Sabbath. When he stood up to read from the Scriptures, he was given the book of Isaiah the prophet. He opened it and read, "The Lord's Spirit has come to me, because he has chosen me to tell the good news to the poor. The Lord has sent me to announce freedom for prisoners, to give sight to the blind, to free everyone who suffers, and to say, 'This is the year the Lord has chosen.' "

Luke 4: 14 - 19

The message that Jesus brought to earth was not for the righteous.  It was not directed at those who were rich.  Jesus came with Good News for those who are poor, sick, suffering, in prison, blind or otherwise impaired!  

If your life is trouble free, and you are happy and content in this world, it is easy for you to feel no need for the Savior!  Jesus, Himself said that He did not come for the righteous, but for sinners!

So if you have been trying to proclaim the message of Jesus to those who feel no pain in living, you may have found that there is little interest.  Until a man or woman feels the insufficiency of just being a human being, he or she will not likely seek to know the Savior who came for those who could not overcome on their own!

And if you are one who is suffering, the News of Jesus is Good, it is all Good!  Jesus is the answer to your every need!  

“Lord Jesus, thank You Lord that there is no problem on earth that is too big for You to handle!  You are indeed the Lord of lords!  May You be praised forever.  Amen.”

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Learn Your Lines!

For forty days Jesus was tested by the devil, and during that time he went without eating. When it was all over, he was hungry.  The devil said to Jesus, "If you are God's Son, tell this stone to turn into bread."  Jesus answered, "The Scriptures say, 'No one can live only on food.' "  Then the devil led Jesus up to a high place and quickly showed him all the nations on earth.  The devil said, "I will give all this power and glory to you. It has been given to me, and I can give it to anyone I want to.  Just worship me, and you can have it all."  Jesus answered, "The Scriptures say: 'Worship the Lord your God and serve only him!' "  Finally, the devil took Jesus to Jerusalem and had him stand on top of the temple. The devil said, "If you are God's Son, jump off.  The Scriptures say: 'God will tell his angels to take care of you.  They will catch you in their arms, and you will not hurt your feet on the stones.' "  Jesus answered, "The Scriptures also say,'Don't try to test the Lord your God!'"

Luke 4: 2 - 12

If you try to respond to temptation in your life without quoting scripture, then you are not following the example of Jesus!

Certainly, Jesus could have answered the Devil without referring to Words from the Bible, but He chose to “read the script” of how to respond to Satan!  

Perhaps the most practical reason for memorizing scripture is to arm your heart and mind with the Words you will need when temptation comes!  Then you, like Jesus can withstand the onslaught of the Devil.  So before you go “on stage” in a performance where the Evil One has been practicing his lines since the days of the Garden of Eden, learn your lines.  Those lines are all in the Bible and need to be in your heart and mind before the hour of temptation comes!  

The Bible tells you to “let the Word of God dwell in you richly.”  Prepare your heart for the temptation that is sure to come by filling it up with God’s Word!  Then, you will not be deceived by the lies of Satan!

“Lord Jesus, help me to learn the Script that I will need when temptation comes.  Teach me more today of Your precious Word.  And may You, Jesus be praised forever.  Amen.”

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Moving On Without Jesus?

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Every year Jesus' parents went to Jerusalem for Passover.  And when Jesus was twelve years old, they all went there as usual for the celebration.  After Passover his parents left, but they did not know that Jesus had stayed on in the city.  They thought he was traveling with some other people, and they went a whole day before they started looking for him.   When they could not find him with their relatives and friends, they went back to Jerusalem and started looking for him there.  Three days later they found Jesus sitting in the temple, listening to the teachers and asking them questions.  Everyone who heard him was surprised at how much he knew and at the answers he gave.  When his parents found him, they were amazed. His mother said, "Son, why have you done this to us? Your father and I have been very worried, and we have been searching for you!"   Jesus answered, "Why did you have to look for me? Didn't you know that I would be in my Father's house?"

Luke 2: 41 - 49

Have you ever discovered that you, like Mary and Joseph have moved on without Jesus?  They did it when they were returning home from Jerusalem and didn’t find Him for three days.  But as soon as they realized that He was not with their relatives or friends, they turned around and went back to find Jesus.

Sometimes you may find that you are moving on with Jesus in your life, and then suddenly you realize that Jesus is no longer there!  But, Jesus promised to be with you always.  Where did He go?  You become confused and bewildered.  What happened and what should you do?

What may have happened is this:  You may have changed direction in your life and didn’t inquire to see if it was the direction that Jesus wanted you to go.   Or you may have heard the Spirit calling you to go another way and you ignored it!  Either way, you moved away from Jesus.  He did not move away from you!

So like Joseph and Mary, when you realize that Jesus is not with you on your journey, turn around and go back to find Him, and do it without delay.

“Lord Jesus, I know that You were all about Your Father’s business while You were here on earth, and I want to do that too!  Help me never to walk away from You, but to always stay close!  And Jesus, may You be praised forever.  Amen.”  

Monday, December 12, 2016

More About Jesus!

I pray that God will be kind to you and will let you live in perfect peace! May you keep learning more and more about God and our Lord Jesus.  We have everything we need to live a life that pleases God. It was all given to us by God's own power, when we learned that he had invited us to share in his wonderful goodness.   God made great and marvelous promises, so that his nature would become part of us. Then we could escape our evil desires and the corrupt influences of this world.

2 Peter 1: 2 - 4

When I was a child, sometimes an adult would ask me a rather annoying question.  The question would come after I got home from school and it was direct and simple.  It was this: “What did you learn in school today?”  There was never a good answer for that question from my perspective as a child.  I suppose I learned new things every day, but it was difficult to say what they were.

God wants you to learn more and more about Him and about Jesus Christ, every day!  And I think He frequently asks us the question: “What have you learned about Jesus?”  When the Spirit leads us into difficult and trying situations, He is wanting to know if we have learned how Jesus would respond, if He were in the same set of circumstances.  

You see, there is a big difference in answering the question of what you have learned about Jesus with your mouth, and in answering that question with your actions and your life!  

How do you learn more about God and about Jesus?  The first place to find out more about Jesus is the Bible.  The story of His life on this earth tells us many things about Him.  Another way to learn about Jesus is to see how He works in the lives of other believers!  That is one really good reason for regular fellowship with other Christians.  And of course, you learn about God and about Jesus as you spend time in prayer!  So whatever you do today, also make it your goal to learn more about the Lord!  

“Lord Jesus, I want to know more about You today, and tomorrow and every day of my life.  May You be praised forever.  Amen.”  

Sunday, December 11, 2016

Mutually Exclusive Loves!

Don't love the world or anything that belongs to the world. If you love the world, you cannot love the Father.   Our foolish pride comes from this world, and so do our selfish desires and our desire to have everything we see. None of this comes from the Father.  The world and the desires it causes are disappearing. But if we obey God, we will live forever.

1 John 2: 15 - 17

By their very nature, some loves are exclusive.  A husband and wife have vowed to love each other exclusively.  He loves only his wife and she loves only him!  It is the same with followers of Jesus Christ.  

These verses in 1 John 2 say it very plainly.  You cannot love the world and the Father!  Those loves are mutually exclusive.  If you love the world, even a little, your love for the Father will disappear.  And if you set your foot on the path of loving God, your love of the world will quickly fade away!  

If you want to know if you really love the Father, then simply look at your heart and search to see if you love the world, even a little.  If you do, then you do not love the Father!  You can’t really love God without abandoning your love of the world!  

The first step in loving God is to turn away from and break off your loving relationship with the world!  You will, for sure never regret it!

“Lord Jesus, help me to see and run away from every temptation to love the world!  I want to love only You.  Praise Your Name forever.  Amen.”

Saturday, December 10, 2016

First Step on the Road to Hell!

The Festival of Thin Bread, also called Passover, was near.  The chief priests and the teachers of the Law of Moses were looking for a way to get rid of Jesus, because they were afraid of what the people might do.  Then Satan entered the heart of Judas Iscariot, who was one of the twelve apostles.  Judas went to talk with the chief priests and the officers of the temple police about how he could help them arrest Jesus.  They were very pleased and offered to pay Judas some money.  He agreed and started looking for a good chance to betray Jesus when the crowds were not around.

Luke 22: 1 - 6

The Bible says that the love of money is the root of all evil.  That truth confirms that the 30 pieces of silver must have played a role in the motivation of Judas as he executed the most evil of all plans!  But don’t forget that the thing that encouraged Judas to take his first step on the road to Hell was when Satan entered his heart!  

Your heart is the target of Spiritual Warfare even today!  When you decided to follow Jesus and let Him be the Lord of your life, the Holy Spirit came to live in your heart!  But, the battle of the ages is still raging as Satan wants you to make room in your heart for him.  If the Devil can get even a little room in your heart, he can wreak havoc in your life like he did in the life of Judas Iscariot!  

When you allow Satan into, even a little of your heart you are inviting a tragedy into your life!  It may start with a simple thought that you know is not right, but you believe the lie that it can’t really harm, just to think it!  Remember, one step away from the Truth leads to another and another until you are squarely on the road, and running away from God!  This is the moment God wants you to stop and turn back to Him!  Go back to God like the prodigal son did to his father!

“Lord Jesus, help me today to give Satan, not even one square inch of my heart!  May You fill me completely so that there is no room for the Devil in my life.  Praise Your Holy Name forever.  Amen.”

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Change Me Lord!

Only a fool would say, "There is no God!" People like that are worthless; they are heartless and cruel and never do right.  From heaven the LORD looks down to see if anyone is wise enough to search for him.

Psalm 14: 1 - 2

The Bible itself says that people who deny the existence of God are worthless, heartless and cruel.  It goes on to say that they never do right!  If you were to publicly agree with what God says about atheists, you would be judged as unloving and overly critical.  The truth is that our modern world agrees with very little that God Himself says!  

We are pressured to change our view of God so that He will seem to be one who believes everything that we do!  That is not the way He is!   Change is needed, but God is not the one who needs to change.

“Lord Jesus, help me to be willing to think like You do about everything, and to give up my political correctness when it conflicts with Your heart and mind!  May You Jesus, be praised forever.  Amen.”

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

The Blessing of Being Able to Love!

If God says his chosen ones are acceptable to him, can anyone bring charges against them?  Or can anyone condemn them? No indeed! Christ died and was raised to life, and now he is at God's right side, speaking to him for us.  Can anything separate us from the love of Christ? Can trouble, suffering, and hard times, or hunger and nakedness, or danger and death?   It is exactly as the Scriptures say, "For you we face death all day long. We are like sheep on their way to be butchered."   In everything we have won more than a victory because of Christ who loves us.  I am sure that nothing can separate us from God's love--not life or death, not angels or spirits, not the present or the future, and not powers above or powers below. Nothing in all creation can separate us from God's love for us in Christ Jesus our Lord!

Romans 8:33 - 40

The greatest thing in all the cosmos is the Love of God.  The love that God has for His creation makes all the difference in everything.  Because of God’s love, He showers His blessings on the ones He loves, which include those who don’t yet love Him!  It is the sometimes glorious and sometimes painful experience of being the object of a loving parent’s eye!  

God intends and desires that you live your life like Jesus did on this earth!   Living your life as Jesus lived His requires no special amount of education or money.  It does not depend on your IQ being above a certain level.  It simply means that you depend on the Father in everything and that you let love be the driving force of your life.  First of all, you love God and then you love other men, even your enemies!

“Lord Jesus, the greatest blessing of all is that You have created human beings with the ability to love You!  Thank You Lord for letting us touch the essence of who You are, by loving You and loving others!  And may You Jesus, be praised forever.  Amen.” 

Monday, December 5, 2016

Jesus Conquered Death!

From John to the seven churches in Asia. I pray that you will be blessed with kindness and peace from God, who is and was and is coming. May you receive kindness and peace from the seven spirits before the throne of God.  May kindness and peace be yours from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness. Jesus was the first to conquer death, and he is the ruler of all earthly kings. Christ loves us, and by his blood he set us free from our sins.  He lets us rule as kings and serve God his Father as priests. To him be glory and power forever and ever! Amen.

Revelation 1: 4 - 6

Jesus may have been the first to conquer death, but He will not be the last!  Those who trust in Jesus will, like Him conquer death!  And, by His Blood they are also set free from their sins.  

What does it mean to conquer death?  Conquering death doesn’t mean that you don’t die.  It means that even though you die, yet you will live!  For those who know Jesus, dying on this earth is not the end of their life.  It is the beginning!  Dying on this earth for followers of Jesus is the beginning of Living with Him forever, where there is no death, or sorrow or pain!  

Jesus conquered death, not by avoiding it on this earth, but He overcame death by His Resurrection!  As a follower of Jesus, you can know that, like Jesus you will rise from death to live again!  Your victory over death will come after you cross over into the Promised Land of Eternity!  

The only followers of Jesus who will not die are those who are still alive when He returns to this earth!  You might be one of those, but even if you are not, there is no reason to fear death if you are a follower of Jesus!

Remember, living here as a follower of Jesus is preparation for living in Heaven as His Bride!  And that, my friend is simply more marvelous than anyone can imagine!

“Lord Jesus, thank You for being the first to conquer death so that those of us who follow You can do the same!  Praise Your Holy Name forever.  Amen.”

Sunday, December 4, 2016

The Most Wonderful Thing in the World!

Nothing is as wonderful as knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. I have given up everything else and count it all as garbage. All I want is Christ and to know that I belong to him. I could not make myself acceptable to God by obeying the Law of Moses. God accepted me simply because of my faith in Christ.  All I want is to know Christ and the power that raised him to life. I want to suffer and die as he did, so that somehow I also may be raised to life.  I have not yet reached my goal, and I am not perfect. But Christ has taken hold of me. So I keep on running and struggling to take hold of the prize.

Philippians 3: 8 - 12

When you want to know Christ, more than anything else in this world, the Savior takes hold of your life!  It is then that Jesus uses you to accomplish His purposes, even when you do not realize it!  Somehow the desires of your heart are motivated by the Holy Spirit and the steps you take move you into places where Jesus is glorified by everything you do!

You are certainly aware that you want to follow Jesus, but the wake of your life rolls over the world around you like ocean waves on a windy day, and you find yourself unable to understand how each one came to be!

To be the best that Jesus wants for your life, simply seek Him with all your heart and let Him take hold of you and every breath you take!  The end of your life will then be an Everlasting Out of this earthly Body experience!  

“Lord Jesus, help me today to embrace the fact that knowing You is the most wonderful thing in the world!  And may You Jesus be praised now and forever.  Amen.”

Saturday, December 3, 2016

You Can Enable God!

God, who created everything, wanted me to help everyone understand the mysterious plan that had always been hidden in his mind.   Then God would use the church to show the powers and authorities in the spiritual world that he has many different kinds of wisdom.   God did this according to his eternal plan. And he was able to do what he had planned because of all that Christ Jesus our Lord had done.

Ephesians 3: 9 - 11

Jesus enabled God to accomplish all that He had planned by being obedient to all that God ask Him to do!  

The power of “free will” is that we can choose to be used by God to accomplish His will on this earth, or we can choose not to be involved!  We cannot stop God’s will on this earth, but we can oppose His desire that we be part of that plan!  

God desires that we love Him and be obedient to His voice!  But, God has given us the ability to refuse Him, and that will result in our eternal separation from God and His love!  It is an unmeasurable tragedy!  

That tragedy, you can avoid all together by listening for His voice and obeying every Word that you hear!  Then you will enable God to do everything He desires to do in your life!

“Lord Jesus, I desire to be Your tool to accomplish Your will in the world around me today.  And may Your Name, Jesus be praised forever.  Amen.”

Friday, December 2, 2016

God Loves His Children!

"Surely the day is coming; it will burn like a furnace. All the arrogant and every evildoer will be stubble, and that day that is coming will set them on fire," says the LORD Almighty. "Not a root or a branch will be left to them.  But for you who revere my name, the sun of righteousness will rise with healing in its wings. And you will go out and leap like calves released from the stall.  Then you will trample down the wicked; they will be ashes under the soles of your feet on the day when I do these things," says the LORD Almighty.   "Remember the law of my servant Moses, the decrees and laws I gave him at Horeb for all Israel.  See, I will send you the prophet Elijah before that great and dreadful day of the LORD comes.  He will turn the hearts of the fathers to their children, and the hearts of the children to their fathers; or else I will come and strike the land with a curse."

Malachi 4:1-6

When the hearts of fathers are turned toward their children and the children do the same for their fathers, they are a living picture of God and His children!  God’s heart is turned toward you, if you are His child.  He truly wants what is best for you in your life!  

And then, the children of God turn their hearts toward Him!  When this happens, there is no curse on the land!  

So, fathers when you love your children, you are showing the world around you what God is like.  And children, when you love your father everyone sees how we should all love our Father God!  It is the most powerful presentation of the Truth of Eternity!  It is the final and glorious climax of the Gospel of Jesus Christ!

“Lord Jesus, turn our hearts to each other so that we can show the world Your love and the love of the Father for us all!  May Your Name be praised forever.  Amen.”

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Rebuild and Repent?

I am Malachi. And this is the message that the LORD gave me for Israel. Israel, I, the LORD, have loved you. And yet you ask in what way have I loved you. Don't forget that Esau was the brother of your ancestor Jacob, but I chose Jacob instead of Esau. And I turned Esau's hill country into a barren desert where jackals roam.  Esau's descendants may say, "Although our nation Edom is in ruins, we will rebuild." But I, the LORD All-Powerful, promise to tear down whatever they build. Then everyone will know that I will never stop being angry with them as long as they are so sinful.

 Malachi 1: 1 - 4

When a nation makes foolish decisions because they have wandered away from faith in God, their nation, soon is in ruins.  When a country deliberately rejects the Truth of God and turns to any and every religion, all the while taking pride in their love of freedom of religion, the consequence is the decline and ultimate fall of that land.  

And then when the people of that country realize how far they have fallen and elect a leader to restore their “glory days,” but they refuse to repent of their sin, then the end of that land may be near!

The United States of America has decided to become great again, but unless we repent of our sins and turn to God the attempt will put us on the doorstep to national tragedy!  

It is good to abandon foolish leaders, but unless we repent of our foolish sins, it will do us no good!  Let the Revival in America or in your country begin today with you!

“Thank You Jesus, for making our return to God possible.  May You be praised forever. Amen.”

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Fiery Final Chapter!

The day of the Lord's return will surprise us like a thief. The heavens will disappear with a loud noise, and the heat will melt the whole universe. Then the earth and everything on it will be seen for what they are.  Everything will be destroyed. So you should serve and honor God by the way you live.  You should look forward to the day when God judges everyone, and you should try to make it come soon. On that day the heavens will be destroyed by fire, and everything else will melt in the heat.

2 Peter 3: 10 - 12

Fire came to Gatlinburg, Tennessee!  Gatlinburg is a resort town at the entrance to the Great Smokey Mountains National Park.  Almost 50 years ago my wife and I spent our honeymoon in Gatlinburg, but now it has been devastated by fire.  At this point no one knows for sure what caused the terribly destructive blaze.  Was it a lightning strike, or an arsonist, or perhaps a careless camper?  The origin of the fire may never be known, but the results of the blaze will last for a very long time.

Fire is coming to the heavens and will melt the earth and everything on it.  There are many shades of theology about the End Times, but very few have figured in these verses in 2 Peter.  According to the Bible there will be a fiery final chapter to the earth and everything on it!  

Our purpose as human beings is not to stop the End of the World from coming, but it is rather to turn our hearts toward Jesus, so that we will be ready for the fire when it comes!  Then we will see the New Heavens and the New Earth!

“Lord Jesus, help me to be ready for the day when I hear the loud noise and the heavens are destroyed by fire.  Thank You Jesus that everyone who loves You will not be harmed when it comes.  May You be praised forever.  Amen.”