Archive for September, 2006

September 14, 2006: 6:26 pm: Daily Scripture

Luke 21:20-24
20 “And when you see Jerusalem surrounded by armies, then you will know that the time of its destruction has arrived. 21 Then those in Judea must flee to the hills. Let those in Jerusalem escape, and those outside the city should not enter it for shelter. 22 For those will be days of God’s vengeance, and the prophetic words of the Scriptures will be fulfilled. 23 How terrible it will be for pregnant women and for mothers nursing their babies. For there will be great distress in the land and wrath upon this people. 24 They will be brutally killed by the sword or sent away as captives to all the nations of the world. And Jerusalem will be conquered and trampled down by the Gentiles until the age of the Gentiles comes to an end.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

Jesus gave us information about the end times and spoke of the Age of the Gentiles. This began with Babylon’s destruction of Jerusalem in 586 B.C. and the first exile of the Jewish people. This was the last time the Jewish people were under their own rule until 1948 when Israel became a nation once again. But the Age of the Gentiles will continue until Jesus Christ is ruling the earth from Jerusalem. Jesus was telling the Jews that they would be dominated by the Gentiles until this time. And we have seen this come to pass, as the Jews have been conquered and trampled down by Gentiles for 1000’s of years. Jerusalem is surrounded by enemies today and they will continue to try and destroy her until Christ returns. As a believer in Christ we should not fear these times we live in, but have great peace because we know that Christ’s return is near. We rejoice not over all of the trouble in the world, but that God has everything under control. These terrible times of war, hurricanes and strange tides were all predicted by Christ and only show us that His Word is true and that He is in control. Rather than being terrified by what is happening in our world we should confidently wait Christ’s return to bring justice and restoration to the entire world.

Have a God Day!

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September 13, 2006: 6:07 pm: Daily Scripture

1 John 3:7-10
7 Dear children, don’t let anyone deceive you about this: When people do what is right, it is because they are righteous, even as Christ is righteous. 8 But when people keep on sinning, it shows they belong to the Devil, who has been sinning since the beginning. But the Son of God came to destroy these works of the Devil. 9 Those who have been born into God’s family do not sin, because God’s life is in them. So they can’t keep on sinning, because they have been born of God. 10 So now we can tell who are children of God and who are children of the Devil. Anyone who does not obey God’s commands and does not love other Christians does not belong to God.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

There is a difference between committing a sin and continuing to sin. Even the most faithful believers sometimes commit sins, but they do not cling to a particular sin or choose to continue in that sin. A believer who sins repents, confesses and finds forgiveness. A person who continues to sin, by contrast, is not sorry for what they have done and continue to do it. They never confess or feel the need to do so. They are not connected to Christ. John is not talking about Christians who are still incomplete in Christ, he is talking about those who make a practice of sinning and look for ways to justify it. For those in Christ who struggle with a particular sin, the Spirit of God continues to work with us to help us to be like Him and gives us victory over any sin. We are not powerless to overcome areas of sin in our lives because of the power Christ gave us when He defeated sin. Romans 8:2 states, “For the power of the life-giving Spirit has freed you through Christ Jesus from the power of sin that leads to death.” Those who love Him seek the power of the Holy Spirit and God’s Word to remove sin from their lives. They stay away from tempting situations and seek help from the body of Christ. Christians are open to each other to hold us accountable and to pray for each other. “They can’t keep on sinning” means that believers do not make a practice of sinning. Because the Spirit of God is within them directly and guiding them away from sin. What sin are you struggling with today? Know that Christ has already defeated the power that would keep you in that sin. Confess before Him and move forward in peace of mind that Christ has already given you victory.

Have a God Day!

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September 12, 2006: 6:19 pm: Daily Scripture

Matthew 25:1-13
“The Kingdom of Heaven can be illustrated by the story of ten bridesmaids who took their lamps and went to meet the bridegroom. 2 Five of them were foolish, and five were wise. 3 The five who were foolish took no oil for their lamps, 4 but the other five were wise enough to take along extra oil. 5 When the bridegroom was delayed, they all lay down and slept. 6 At midnight they were roused by the shout, ‘Look, the bridegroom is coming! Come out and welcome him!’ 7 “All the bridesmaids got up and prepared their lamps. 8 Then the five foolish ones asked the others, ‘Please give us some of your oil because our lamps are going out.’ 9 But the others replied, ‘We don’t have enough for all of us. Go to a shop and buy some for yourselves.’ 10 “But while they were gone to buy oil, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went in with him to the marriage feast, and the door was locked. 11 Later, when the other five bridesmaids returned, they stood outside, calling, ‘Sir, open the door for us!’ 12 But he called back, ‘I don’t know you!’ 13 “So stay awake and be prepared, because you do not know the day or hour of my return.”
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

Knowing about Jesus and knowing Him are two different things. One is having some understanding of what He did and who He is, but the other is having a personal relationship with Him. On the Day that Christ returns for His church, many will think He is coming for them, but will be disappointed when they are left behind. Only those who have accepted His free gift of grace and are living out that faith will be prepared for His return. James 2:14 states: “Dear brothers and sisters, what’s the use of saying you have faith if you don’t prove it by your actions? That kind of faith can’t save anyone.” And in James 2:17-19, ” So you see, it isn’t enough just to have faith. Faith that doesn’t show itself by good deeds is no faith at all-it is dead and useless. 18 Now someone may argue, “Some people have faith; others have good deeds.” I say, “I can’t see your faith if you don’t have good deeds, but I will show you my faith through my good deeds.” 19 Do you still think it’s enough just to believe that there is one God? Well, even the demons believe this, and they tremble in terror! 20 Fool! When will you ever learn that faith that does not result in good deeds is useless?” Only those prepared for Christ will meet Him. God is the only One who can judge a heart to know if you are working to become more like Him. We can not be saved by our works, but our works prove we are saved. Accepting His grace is just the start. Many know about Him, but few love and serve Him. To serve Him, we must know His Word plant it in our minds and obey it. Obedience is the key to being prepared to meet Him when He returns. It is the oil for our lamps. Are you ready to meet Him today? Are you prepared? Is there enough oil in your lamp? These are questions you must ask yourself and then go before God and ask Him. If your heart is open to obeying His Word you will hear from Him and He will direct you. So examine yourself today and put some oil in your lamp!

Have a God Day!

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September 11, 2006: 7:02 pm: Daily Scripture

John 15:5-8
5 “Yes, I am the vine; you are the branches. Those who remain in me, and I in them, will produce much fruit. For apart from me you can do nothing. 6 Anyone who parts from me is thrown away like a useless branch and withers. Such branches are gathered into a pile to be burned. 7 But if you stay joined to me and my words remain in you, you may ask any request you like, and it will be granted! 8 My true disciples produce much fruit. This brings great glory to my Father. Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

There are some who claim to be a part of Christ, but feel that they do not need to belong to His body. This would be a group of people who believe that Christ is Lord and gather together to worship and serve Him by serving each other. But Christ has told us that to be a part of Him; we need to be a part of His body. 1 Corinthians 12:12 tells us, “The human body has many parts, but the many parts make up only one body. So it is with the body of Christ.” So to claim to belong to Christ, but not be a part of a group of believers will eventually lead you away from Christ. In order to remain in Christ, we must know Him by knowing His Word and we must belong to His body by worshipping with those who also serve Him. If you are apart from His body, you are apart from Him. 1 Corinthians 12:27 goes on to say, “Now all of you together are Christ’s body, and each one of you is a separate and necessary part of it.” Being a part of a group of believers that come together regularly and worship Christ is not an option. Those who think they can serve Christ outside of His body are only being deceived. We must encompass all parts of Him. And that includes His people, His Word, and His truth. Outside of this you can not be attached to Christ. Where are you going today to worship Him? Are you a part of His body? If not, then you can not be a part of Him. And outside of Him, you will wither and die. Know the truth of His Word by reading and studying it, and be a part of His body. All of us together are stronger than each of us individually. Look only to His Word for truth and you will not be separated from Him.

Have a God Day!

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