July 28, 2014: 11:10 pm: Christian Love

Acts 2:1-4

On the day of Pentecost, seven weeks after Jesus’ resurrection, the believers were meeting together in one place. 2 Suddenly, there was a sound from heaven like the roaring of a mighty windstorm in the skies above them, and it filled the house where they were meeting. 3 Then, what looked like flames or tongues of fire appeared and settled on each of them. 4 And everyone present was filled with the Holy Spirit and began speaking in other languages, as the Holy Spirit gave them this ability.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

This event is the start of the Church. God showed the world in a very dramatic event that His power is now available to anyone who believes in Christ. Tongues of fire settled on each of the believers. The fire symbolizes God’s purifying presence, which burns away the undesirable elements of our life ands sets our hearts aflame to ignite the lives of others. On Mount Sinai, God confirmed the validity of the Old Testament Law with fire from heaven (Exodus 19:16-18). At Pentecost, God confirmed the validity of the work of the Holy Spirit by sending fire. At Mount Sinai, fire came down on one place: at Pentecost, fire came down on many believers, showing God’s presence is available to all who believe. Has the fire of Pentecost ignited your life? Do you function under the power of God or under what you can do on your own? Read Acts to see what a difference it made in the lives of the very simple fishermen that learned from Jesus. They went from hiding out in fear to going out in public and reaching thousands for Christ in one day. God can do the same for you!

Have a God Day!

 

 

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July 25, 2014: 11:54 pm: Grace

Acts 1:1-8

In my first book I told you about everything Jesus began to do and teach 2 until the day he ascended to heaven after giving his chosen apostles further instructions from the Holy Spirit. 3 During the forty days after his crucifixion, he appeared to the apostles from time to time and proved to them in many ways that he was actually alive. On these occasions he talked to them about the Kingdom of God. 4 In one of these meetings as he was eating a meal with them, he told them, “Do not leave Jerusalem until the Father sends you what he promised. Remember, I have told you about this before. 5 John baptized with water, but in just a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.” 6 When the apostles were with Jesus, they kept asking him, “Lord, are you going to free Israel now and restore our kingdom?” 7 “The Father sets those dates,” he replied, “and they are not for you to know. 8 But when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, you will receive power and will tell people about me everywhere in Jerusalem, throughout Judea, in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

These are the finals words of Jesus before he left this world and returned to heaven to sit at the right hand of the Father. It is here that the change begins in the disciples. They have now become apostles. When they sat at the foot of Christ, they were learning more about why He had come and they were considered disciples or followers. They were in a learning stage. But now in the Book of Acts they are called apostles meaning messenger or missionary. It is time for them to move out and act on what they have learned. After they received the Holy Spirit, they did just that. Have you moved from disciple to apostle? Are you still learning about Jesus Christ or are you teaching about Him? We all have the special assignment from God to spread the Good News of the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. There is a time to learn and then there is a time to tell. If you have not moved into this stage yet, take a leap of faith and start to live what you have learned. Tell others about Christ by how you live and when the opportunity comes speak the truth you know. Act under the power of the Holy Spirit within you and move under His direction. Keep learning more about Him but also live and speak what you know about Him. If you are still a disciple and have not become an apostle, then make the move by stepping out in faith. Move in the power of the Holy Spirit and God will bless you.

Have a God Day!

 

 

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July 24, 2014: 11:54 pm: Daily Scripture

Philippians 1:20-27

20 For I live in eager expectation and hope that I will never do anything that causes me shame, but that I will always be bold for Christ, as I have been in the past, and that my life will always honor Christ, whether I live or I die. 21 For to me, living is for Christ, and dying is even better. 22 Yet if I live, that means fruitful service for Christ. I really don’t know which is better. 23 I’m torn between two desires: Sometimes I want to live, and sometimes I long to go and be with Christ. That would be far better for me, 24 but it is better for you that I live. 25 I am convinced of this, so I will continue with you so that you will grow and experience the joy of your faith. 26 Then when I return to you, you will have even more reason to boast about what Christ Jesus has done for me. 27 But whatever happens to me, you must live in a manner worthy of the Good News about Christ, as citizens of heaven. Then, whether I come and see you again or only hear about you, I will know that you are standing side by side, fighting together for the Good News.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

We are to live with one eye on eternity. Knowing that we are citizens of heaven will keep us focused on our goal. Paul was not looking to die in this text but was simply stating that to die was gain but to live was Christ. When those in Christ die, we gain all that God has prepared for us. There will not be one person who will enter heaven and want to return to this world. It will be far more than we can imagine. To be with Christ will be the ultimate reward. But while we yet live, we are to continue His plan and His purpose for our lives. Since Paul had focused his life on doing the work of God, for the Philippians it was better if he lived. The longer he stayed, the more they learned about Christ. Keep your eye on the fact that heaven waits for you, but live your life as Christ directs you. Don’t be surprised if all of your dreams do not come true because this is not your home. Live for Christ through the power of His Spirit now and know that you will enjoy the presence of Christ for eternity when your work is through.

Have a God Day!

 

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July 23, 2014: 7:05 pm: Return of Christ

Genesis 2:4-9

When the Lord God made the heavens and the earth, 5 there were no plants or grain growing on the earth, for the Lord God had not sent any rain. And no one was there to cultivate the soil. 6 But water came up out of the ground and watered all the land. 7 And the Lord God formed a man’s body from the dust of the ground and breathed into it the breath of life. And the man became a living person. 8 Then the Lord God planted a garden in Eden, in the east, and there he placed the man he had created. 9 And the Lord God planted all sorts of trees in the garden-beautiful trees that produced delicious fruit. At the center of the garden he placed the tree of life and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

As we move forward into the 21st century, we are going to see more advancement in science and medicine. And if we look back over the 20th century, we will see more advances in technology, science and medicine than in all pervious centuries combined. Knowledge is advancing exponentially. And it will not be long before man once again attempts to clone a human being. Under the disguise of wanting to save lives, man will be manipulating life. Recently a rare and endangered species of wild ox called a gaur was cloned from a skin cell and an empty egg, but the clone died after two days. And a monkey was genetically engineered from a jelly fish cell. So the monkey’s cells all have a jellyfish gene in them. Most recently there are groups that claim to have the first cloned person, but there is no proof. Life is sacred to God and only He can create it, man can only manipulate it and only as long as God allows. The very breath of God is in us and we are created in His image. No matter how much man tries to change this or denies it, it will never change. I do not believe that God will allow man to create human life through cloning. But we will see more and more embryonic stem cell research. Scientist, stating they are helping man, will destroy him by killing embryos. A human embryo is a female egg cell that has been implanted by a male sperm cell. This is a human being. And all life is sacred to God. The stench of man’s sins will soon reach heaven and God will say enough. Romans 1:22 states it best, “Professing to be wise, they became fools, and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like corruptible man.” We are created in the image of our Father and His very breath is in us. No matter how hard man tries to change this, it will never be accomplished. Stay true to the knowledge of His Word. Plant it deep in your heart and water it with time in prayer and be in this world but not a part of it.

Have a God Day!

 

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July 22, 2014: 7:03 pm: Christian Love

Zechariah 3:1-10

Then the angel showed me Jeshua the high priest standing before the angel of the Lord. Satan was there at the angel’s right hand, accusing Jeshua of many things. 2 And the Lord said to Satan, “I, the Lord, reject your accusations, Satan. Yes, the Lord, who has chosen Jerusalem, rebukes you. This man is like a burning stick that has been snatched from a fire.” 3 Jeshua’s clothing was filthy as he stood there before the angel. 4 So the angel said to the others standing there, “Take off his filthy clothes. And turning to Jeshua he said, “See, I have taken away your sins, and now I am giving you these fine new clothes.” 5 Then I said, “Please, could he also have a clean turban on his head?” So they put a clean priestly turban on his head and dressed him in new clothes while the angel of the Lord stood by. 6 Then the angel of the Lord spoke very solemnly to Jeshua and said, 7 “This is what the Lord Almighty says: If you follow my ways and obey my requirements, then you will be given authority over my Temple and its courtyards. I will let you walk in and out of my presence along with these others standing here. 8 Listen to me, O Jeshua the high priest, and all you other priests. You are symbols of the good things to come. Soon I am going to bring my servant, the Branch. 9 Now look at the jewel I have set before Jeshua, a single stone with seven facets. I will engrave an inscription on it, says the Lord Almighty, and I will remove the sins of this land in a single day. 10 And on that day, says the Lord Almighty, each of you will invite your neighbor into your home to share your peace and prosperity.”
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996

Born in Babylon during the exile, Zechariah was a young man when he returned to Jerusalem in 538 B.C. He was a prophet and priest. Being one of the first to return, he was working on rebuilding the Temple and the walls around Jerusalem. Jeshua was the high priest and chapter three is a vision that Zechariah had concerning the Jewish people. Satan is accusing Jeshua, who represents the nation of Israel. He stood in “filthy” clothes (sins). Yet God is revealing His mercy by stating that He chooses to save His people in spite of their sin. This is a very graphic image of how we receive God’s mercy. We do nothing ourselves. God removes our “filthy” clothes (sin), and then provides us with fine new clothes (the righteousness of Christ). All we need to do is believe on the Branch that God sent to die for our sin, ask God to save us and repent. In a single day, Jesus Christ removed the sin from the land. And that redemption is available to all who come to Him. When Satan tries to make you feel unworthy and dirty, remember that the clean clothes of Christ’s righteousness, now on you, make you worthy to draw near to God. And in His presence there is always great joy and peace!

Have a God Day!

 

 

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July 21, 2014: 7:02 pm: Grace

Romans 12:9-17

9 Don’t just pretend that you love others. Really love them. Hate what is wrong. Stand on the side of the good. 10 Love each other with genuine affection, and take delight in honoring each other. 11 Never be lazy in your work, but serve the Lord enthusiastically. 12 Be glad for all God is planning for you. Be patient in trouble, and always be prayerful. 13 When God’s children are in need, be the one to help them out. And get into the habit of inviting guests home for dinner or, if they need lodging, for the night. 14 If people persecute you because you are a Christian, don’t curse them; pray that God will bless them. 15 When others are happy, be happy with them. If they are sad, share their sorrow. 16 Live in harmony with each other. Don’t try to act important, but enjoy the company of ordinary people. And don’t think you know it all! 17 Never pay back evil for evil to anyone. Do things in such a way that everyone can see you are honorable. 18 Do your part to live in peace with everyone, as much as possible.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

A person who wants peace cannot be argumentative and contentious. If you are asking for peace in your life, you may need to look at what peace you are giving. In other words, it is difficult to get what you are not willing to give. Peaceful relationships and peace with God begin with what you are doing in your life. It is difficult to think that we are just passive receivers of peace, when the truth is far from it. We must live and act peacefully to have peace in our lives. This is not to be confused from the peace that comes from knowing you are in right standing with the God of this universe through salvation in Christ. The peace that comes from day to day living your faith is the peace Paul is talking about in Romans. One can have peace with God, but be at turmoil with those around them. God wants us to live in peace in all aspects of our lives. But it is not a passive receiving, it is an active giving that maintains peace in our lives. The Bible is very clear about what to do and how to do it. Do what God is instructing in these verses and you will not only have peace with God, you will have peace with all those around you. Decide what you want and then give it. Don’t just expect to receive what you are not willing to give. Faith in Christ is an active faith and requires that we act the love so freely given to us to all those we come in contact with.

Have a God Day!

 

 

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July 18, 2014: 8:39 pm: Sanctification

Ephesians 4: 20-25

20 But that isn’t what you were taught when you learned about Christ. 21 Since you have heard all about him and have learned the truth that is in Jesus, 22 throw off your old evil nature and your former way of life, which is rotten through and through, full of lust and deception. 23 Instead, there must be a spiritual renewal of your thoughts and attitudes. 24 You must display a new nature because you are a new person, created in God’s likeness-righteous, holy, and true. 25 So put away all falsehood and “tell your neighbor the truth” because we belong to each other. 26 And “don’t sin by letting anger gain control over you.” Don’t let the sun go down while you are still angry, 27 for anger gives a mighty foothold to the Devil.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

A major aspect of holiness is living a life separated from the world. Jesus taught us to be in the world but not of the world. What used to be good is now bad and what used to bad is now good according to the world’s standards. But the Word of God does not change; sin is still sin, no matter what you call it or how you look at it. And it is God’s standards that we use to measure. He laid out the plan before the beginning of time and it has not changed. We need to shed the “old man” and stand in readiness for spiritual combat. We need to recognize that we have demonic enemies that are out to separate us from God or at least make us useless Christians. If we are too weak in our faith and relationship with God, we will not be an effective witness to those around us. Reject any evil attitudes and let God work His divine nature through you.

Have a God Day!

 

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July 17, 2014: 8:38 pm: Salvation

32 A psalm of David.

1 Oh, what joy for those whose rebellion is forgiven, whose sin is put out of sight!
2 Yes, what joy for those whose record the Lord has cleared of sin, whose lives are lived in complete honesty!
3 When I refused to confess my sin, I was weak and miserable, and I groaned all day long.
4 Day and night your hand of discipline was heavy on me. My strength evaporated like water in the summer heat.
5 Finally, I confessed all my sins to you and stopped trying to hide them. I said to myself, “I will confess my rebellion to the Lord.” And you forgave me!
All my guilt is gone.
6 Therefore, let all the godly confess their rebellion to you while there is time, that they may not drown in the floodwaters of judgment.
7 For you are my hiding place; you protect me from trouble. You surround me with songs of victory.
8 The Lord says, “I will guide you along the best pathway for your life. I will advise you and watch over you.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996

Forgiveness has always been a part of God’s loving nature. He wants to forgive sin. God knows the best path for all of His creatures and He is waiting to direct and guide anyone who is willing to let Him. When the knowledge of His grace becomes real in our lives, we experience great joy. It is by faith we believe that God could have possibly loved us so much that He sent us a way of escape from sin. God has made a Way. In the Book of John, Jesus said to us, “I am the Way the Truth and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” God is patiently waiting for you to understand and believe in Him. He knows there is great joy for those that do. Anyone who believes in Him will receive absolution from sin. Then evidence of our faith will show in our life lived for Christ. But God is not going to wait forever. There will come a day when time will end. David had the knowledge of God’s judgment on the world at the great flood. He knew that God would not tolerate sin forever. But today, there is still time to repent. None of us knows what tomorrow will bring, why not be ready to face eternity with God’s grace instead of His judgment!

Have a God Day!

 

 

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July 16, 2014: 1:52 am: Sanctification

2 Timothy 4:3-5

3 For a time is coming when people will no longer listen to right teaching. They will follow their own desires and will look for teachers who will tell them whatever they want to hear. 4 They will reject the truth and follow strange myths. 5 But you should keep a clear mind in every situation. Don’t be afraid of suffering for the Lord. Work at bringing others to Christ. Complete the ministry God has given you.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

Over 2000 years ago the time had come when people would no longer listen to right teaching and it is still here today. Many follow their own desires looking for someone to tell them what they want to hear. Many do not want to hear about a God who can change their lives, they want to determine what is right and wrong regardless of who it may hurt. Satan is very busy today deceiving those who would be deceived. As a child of Christ and a part of His body, we need to keep our focus clear. Keeping the mind of Christ is our first priority. Everything else will fall into place with our mind focused on Him. When we know Him, we know the truth and everything else becomes clear. Remember this as you go out into the world. Remember that many people want to be deceived and choose not to believe in a God who can save them from their sin. They do not believe they have sin or simply do not care. Those that will listen will and those who are going to be deceived will. Continue to live for Christ and continue to let your life and actions show that you belong to Him. Never let an opportunity pass to let someone know the truth about Christ’ love because you never know the true heart of a person. Many will come to know of His love and accept it, but many more will not. This is simply a sign of the end of this age. Christ will return soon. Be ready to meet Him, by keeping Him your focus.

Have a God Day!

 

 

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July 15, 2014: 2:25 am: Sanctification

 

2 Timothy 1;1-5

You should also know this, Timothy, that in the last days there will be very difficult times. 2 For people will love only themselves and their money. They will be boastful and proud, scoffing at God, disobedient to their parents, and ungrateful. They will consider nothing sacred. 3 They will be unloving and unforgiving; they will slander others and have no self-control; they will be cruel and have no interest in what is good. 4 They will betray their friends, be reckless, be puffed up with pride, and love pleasure rather than God. 5 They will act as if they are religious, but they will reject the power that could make them godly. You must stay away from people like that.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

The “act” or appearance of being religious includes going to church, knowing Christian doctrine, using Christian cliches, and following Christian traditions. Such practices can make a person look good, but if their inner attitudes of belief, love and worship are lacking, the outer appearance is meaningless. Jesus said it twice in Matthew, “I want you to be merciful; I don’t want your sacrifices.” In other words, God does not want our outward actions unless our heart is turned toward Him and we are living His Word, His way. Those who “live” as if they belong to God, but do worship Him as Lord of their life are just going through the motions. Right now in our society this is quit common. In fact, Christ said it would happen in the days before His return. The hearts of this world are turning toward “spirituality” but are leaving Christ out of it. They want to look like they are religious, but it is of their own doing and really has nothing to do with God. That is why we are seeing homosexuals holding high positions in some churches. (Any sex outside of man-woman marriage is sin according to the Word of God.) They have the “appearance ” of living for God, but are really living their own agenda. God will have nothing to do with it. If the church you are in brings in sin and states that the Word of God is wrong on this sin, run! The Word of God cannot be amended to fit into what our society finds acceptable today. That is what happen in Sodom and Gomorrah and look what happened to them. It may be difficult to distinguish those who say they belong to God, from those that really do at first, but how they worship Him will tell in an instant. Do they call upon the name of Jesus Christ and do they say that all of the Word of God is without error? This is you clue. Look to what His Word says and do not pick out the parts that you like and say, “I will live this part, but not this.” To be a part of Christ, He makes the rules, we don’t. The Bible has already been written and it is from God and we are not in a position to change what He has already done!

Have a God Day!

 

 

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