Archive for March, 2009

March 17, 2009: 5:29 pm: Daily Scripture

Proverbs 4:18-25
18 The way of the righteous is like the first gleam of dawn, which shines ever brighter until the full light of day. 19 But the way of the wicked is like complete darkness. Those who follow it have no idea what they are stumbling over. 20 Pay attention, my child, to what I say. Listen carefully. 21 Don’t lose sight of my words. Let them penetrate deep within your heart, 22 for they bring life and radiant health to anyone who discovers their meaning. 23 Above all else, guard your heart, for it affects everything you do. 24 Avoid all perverse talk; stay far from corrupt speech. 25 Look straight ahead, and fix your eyes on what lies before you. 26 Mark out a straight path for your feet; then stick to the path and stay safe. 27 Don’t get sidetracked; keep your feet from following evil.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

To live effectively for God begins with respecting and appreciating who God is. God’s wisdom applied in our lives starts with reverence and awe in recognizing God Almighty as Lord. Effective living requires we trust in God and His Word. We allow His Word to speak to us personally and are willing to obey. Then we are to act on God’s direction in our daily devotions with Him. This will result in effective living for Christ in this world of sin. We live in compliance to God’s Word and experience what God can do through that obedience. Do you have victory in your walk with Christ? Or is it a daily struggle for you? If so, apply God’s wisdom by honoring Him and trusting in His Word, then act on His direction. The power of the Holy Spirit in you will guide you step by step as you trust Him.

Have a God Day!

Printer Friendly Version Printer Friendly Version
March 16, 2009: 4:29 pm: Daily Scripture

Galatians 3:15-23
15 Dear brothers and sisters, here’s an example from everyday life. Just as no one can set aside or amend an irrevocable agreement, so it is in this case. 16 God gave the promise to Abraham and his child. And notice that it doesn’t say the promise was to his children. as if it meant many descendants. But the promise was to his child-and that, of course, means Christ. 17 This is what I am trying to say: The agreement God made with Abraham could not be canceled 430 years later when God gave the law to Moses. God would be breaking his promise. 18 For if the inheritance could be received only by keeping the law, then it would not be the result of accepting God’s promise. But God gave it to Abraham as a promise. 19 Well then, why was the law given? It was given to show people how guilty they are. But this system of law was to last only until the coming of the child to whom God’s promise was made. And there is this further difference. God gave his laws to angels to give to Moses, who was the mediator between God and the people; 20 Now a mediator is needed if two people enter into an agreement, but God acted on his own when he made his promise to Abraham. 21 Well then, is there a conflict between God’s law and God’s promises? Absolutely not! If the law could have given us new life, we could have been made right with God by obeying it. 22 But the Scriptures have declared that we are all prisoners of sin. so the only way to receive God’s promise is to believe in Jesus Christ. 23 Until faith in Christ was shown to us as the way of becoming right with God, we were guarded by the law. We were kept in protective custody, so to speak, until we could put our faith in the coming Savior.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation. (Wheaton. IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

Recognizing sin under the law never equaled salvation. The law was given to show man his sin, not to save him because no one could keep the law. Romans 3: 10 states, “And the person who keeps all of the laws except one is as guilty as the person who has broken all of God’s laws.” The promised made to Abraham came directly from God and was the promise of inheritance through Christ Jesus the Child. It wasn’t a promise given to Mose but simply the Law and that came to him through angels, not directly from God. Of course, the Law is truth and His Word is eternal, but salvation comes only through the Word who became flesh. Those who count on the Law to save them are trusting in their own ability to obey. And no one is able to keep the Law. If you are guilty of breaking one, you have broken them all. What function then is the Law today? If we are justified by faith and not works, is there any place for works? Can we accept the gift of salvation and then do as we please? The answer is yes because if God lives within us, we want to do His will. When we admit we are sinners and need God, then accept His gift of salvation through Christ, His Holy Spirit lives in us. If God is within us, we are changed and will become more like Him. As we become more like Him, we want to do His will. This is how we know He is in us, we become more and more like Him. The Spirit of God then gives us the desire to keep His Law. It is not of ourselves, but of Him who lives in us.

Have a God Day!

Printer Friendly Version Printer Friendly Version
March 13, 2009: 4:24 pm: Daily Scripture

James 1:12-18
12 God blesses the people who patiently endure testing. Afterward they will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him. 13 And remember, no one who wants to do wrong should ever say, “God is tempting me.” God is never tempted to do wrong, and he never tempts anyone else either. 14 Temptation comes from the lure of our own evil desires. 15 These evil desires lead to evil actions, and evil actions lead to death. 16 So don’t be misled, my dear brothers and sisters. 17 Whatever is good and perfect comes to us from God above, who created all heaven’s lights. Unlike them, he never changes or casts shifting shadows. 18 In his goodness he chose to make us his own children by giving us his true word. And we, out of all creation, became his choice possession.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

Ever wonder about the Lord’s Prayer that states, “And lead us not into temptation.” God does not lead any of us into temptation to sin. According to what James is telling us, He never tempts us to evil. To be tempted from a divine standpoint means a positive test; from the Devil’s standpoint it is an enticement to sin. Always! God will ask us to demonstrate what He has taught us. Jesus did this with the disciples. After coming down from the mountain where Jesus had taught them, He would put the lesson to a test. Jesus would challenge the disciples’ faith by asking them to believe what He had just said by putting it into practice. After the Sermon on the Mount, there were 5000 people to feed and He told His disciples to feed them. He had just told them to seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and then all of their needs would be meet. Whenever we are in a position to sin or not, it is always from Satan. Are you facing a situation of temptation to sin? Look at the source of the temptation and stand firm on the Word of God. God will bless you and strengthen you every time you choose not to sin.

Have a God Day!

Printer Friendly Version Printer Friendly Version
March 12, 2009: 4:19 pm: Daily Scripture

Philippians 4:8-9
8 Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy-meditate on these things. 9 The things which you learned and received and heard and saw in me, these do, and the God of peace will be with you.
The Holy Bible, New King James Version, (Nashville, Tennessee: Thomas Nelson, Inc.) 1982.

What we put into our mind determines our words.  And our words determine our actions.  Garbage in gets garbage out.  The Word of God in gets the Word of God out.  We decide.  It is a simple fact that most of us know, but it is not the knowing that makes it true it is the doing.  This is more difficult for all of us.  But we take small steps as we are lead by the Spirit of God.  Start with the music you listen to.  If you hear only sex, hate and self, this is what will come out of you.  But if you put the Word into you by way of Christian music, it will feed you with His truth and this will come out in your life.  Take one or two scripture verses and memorize them.  Start small and work your way up and as you are feed more of the Word, you will grow.  Meditate on the things of God you know and apply them to your life by your words and your actions.  Think on the love and truth of God and He will be exposed to the world around you.  You decide what shows in your life.  What are others seeing in you?

Have a God Day!

Printer Friendly Version Printer Friendly Version
March 11, 2009: 4:18 pm: Daily Scripture

Romans 8:26-30
26 And the Holy Spirit helps us in our distress. For we don’t even know what we should pray for, nor how we should pray. But the Holy Spirit prays for us with groanings that cannot be expressed in words. 27 And the Father who knows all hearts knows what the Spirit is saying, for the Spirit pleads for us believers in harmony with God’s own will. 28 And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them. 29 For God knew his people in advance, and he chose them to become like his Son, so that his Son would be the firstborn, with many brothers and sisters. 30 And having chosen them, he called them to come to him. And he gave them right standing with himself, and he promised them his glory.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

God works for our good in all things.  Not just some things or the things we can understand but in all things.  There is nothing that happens to you that God is not working for your good.  This does not mean that all things that happen to us are good, but that God is able to work good out every situation.  That includes the evil we do or that is done to us.  We may not see immediate good, but it all has a purpose and a plan by our God.  He is not working to make us happy but to fulfill His long range plan for us.  And this is the place that we find peace and joy.  Note that this promise can not be claimed by all only those who are called.  It is for those who belong to Him.  For those of us who belong to God,  He gives us a new understanding and a new mind set.  He gives us the mind of Christ.  And it is here that we learn to trust Him. Faith does not waver in pain and trials because we know that God is with us and is working for us.

Have a God Day!

Printer Friendly Version Printer Friendly Version
March 10, 2009: 4:41 pm: Daily Scripture

Romans 6:1-11
Well then, should we keep on sinning so that God can show us more and more kindness and forgiveness? 2 Of course not! Since we have died to sin, how can we continue to live in it? 3 Or have you forgotten that when we became Christians and were baptized to become one with Christ Jesus, we died with him? 4 For we died and were buried with Christ by baptism. And just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glorious power of the Father, now we also may live new lives.  5 Since we have been united with him in his death, we will also be raised as he was. 6 Our old sinful selves were crucified with Christ so that sin might lose its power in our lives. We are no longer slaves to sin. 7 For when we died with Christ we were set free from the power of sin. 8 And since we died with Christ, we know we will also share his new life. 9 We are sure of this because Christ rose from the dead, and he will never die again. Death no longer has any power over him. 10 He died once to defeat sin, and now he lives for the glory of God. 11 So you should consider yourselves dead to sin and able to live for the glory of God through Christ Jesus.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

As a child of God, what is your relationship with sin?  Now that you have accepted Christ as Lord and have received forgiveness for your sins, what power does sin have over you?  According to Paul, sin has lost its power to control you.  It does not mean that you will not sin again; it just means that sin has no power over you.  Without the blood of Christ over you, sin has complete control.  It is like swimming into a whirlpool, once in it, you have no control except to go through the whole thing and be spit out at the end.  Sin is like that for those without Christ.  Taking that first step into sin, will pull you deeper into it and it will lead to complete destruction.  As a Christian, we will sin, but the power of the Holy Spirit will bring it to our mind and we will seek forgiveness and have the power to step out of it.  1 Corinthians 10:13 applies to sin in our life, “No trial has come to you but what is human. God is faithful and will not let you be tried beyond your strength; but with the trial he will also provide a way out, so that you may be able to bear it.”  Once you confess your sin, He is faithful to forgive you and will provide you power to step out of it.  We are not bound by the sin we have stepped into.  Our old sinful selves were crucified with Christ so that sin might lose its power in our lives. We are no longer slaves to sin.  We are free to do the will of God the Father through the direction of Jesus Christ and by the power of the Holy Spirit.  Consider yourself dead to sin and go out and live for the glory of God through Christ Jesus.

Have a God Day!

Printer Friendly Version Printer Friendly Version
March 9, 2009: 5:44 pm: Daily Scripture

Mark 12:28-31
28 One of the teachers of religious law was standing there listening to the discussion. He realized that Jesus had answered well, so he asked, “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?” 29 Jesus replied, “The most important commandment is this: ‘Hear, O Israel! The Lord our God is the one and only Lord. 30 And you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind, and all your strength.’ 31 The second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ No other commandment is greater than these.”
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

The heartbeat of our mission is to love the Lord our God with all of our heart, all our soul, all our mind and all our strength.  This is what we were created for and this is why Jesus came to die for us, so that we could have access to God the Father to know Him and to receive His love.  How far are you from God today?  When you find yourself in a situation that you know only God can help, how far do you need to run to Him?  Is He with you always, so when you turn, you do not need to go far?  Or when you need Him, do you have far to run to find Him?  Always know that it is you who have put the distance between you and not Christ.  In Matthew 28:20 He states, “And know this; I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”  When we find ourselves separated from God, we have not been keeping this commandment given to us by Jesus.  Loving God with all of our being should be our first priority.  This does not mean selling everything and going off into the jungle.  But it does mean that from wherever we are, He is first in our life.  God is first when we know Him by His Word and by spending time with Him.  How far do you need to run when you turn to Him?  If it is too far, remove the gap by loving the Lord your God with all of your heart, soul, mind and strength!

Have a God Day!

Printer Friendly Version Printer Friendly Version
March 6, 2009: 8:24 pm: Daily Scripture

Psalm 103:10-12
10 He has not punished us for all our sins, nor does he deal with us as we deserve.
11 For his unfailing love toward those who fear him is as great as the height of the heavens above the earth.
12 He has removed our rebellious acts as far away from us as the east is from the west.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

If you travel north eventually you will be heading south.  As north and south meet at the poles.  But if you travel east, you will always travel east.  That is because east and west never meet like north and south.  This psalm is a symbolic portrait of God’s forgiveness.  When He forgives our sin, He separates it from us and dos not remember it.  We need never wallow in the past, for God forgives and forgets.  It is difficult to move forward if you are always looking backwards.  Our mind will continue to bring up past failures to make us stumble again. But as a forgiven child of God, we must put our forgiven sin out of our mind and thoughts, because God doesn’t even know what you are remembering.  He is not the One who will continue to bring up past failures in your mind, it is Satan.  He wants you to fail and will remind you of your past failures to keep you down and keep you from moving forward into becoming more like Christ.  So the next time you think about your past failures remember this psalm and put the thought out of your mind.  Think about the good that God has done in your life and not about your own failures.  God doesn’t, so you shouldn’t.

Have a God Day!

Printer Friendly Version Printer Friendly Version
March 5, 2009: 8:20 pm: Daily Scripture

Colossians 1:25-29
25 God has given me the responsibility of serving his church by proclaiming his message in all its fullness to you Gentiles. 26 This message was kept secret for centuries and generations past, but now it has been revealed to his own holy people. 27 For it has pleased God to tell his people that the riches and glory of Christ are for you Gentiles, too. For this is the secret: Christ lives in you, and this is your assurance that you will share in his glory. 28 So everywhere we go, we tell everyone about Christ. We warn them and teach them with all the wisdom God has given us, for we want to present them to God, perfect in their relationship to Christ. 29 I work very hard at this, as I depend on Christ’s mighty power that works within me.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

How much of your life is under control of your “old nature” and how much is under control of “Christ in you?” Depends on how much room you have made for Christ. If you are still struggling with sin or can not find time for God, then too much of your “old nature” is in control. Recognizing unacceptable behaviors and habits is the first step to surrendering them to the control of “Christ in you.” All of us have things in our life we are not proud of and realize the need to make some changes. The only time in our life when we do not need to improve or change is when we are dead. But until that time, there will always be a part of your “old nature” that will want to bring you down or away from what God has intended for you. His life in you is truly your only hope of permanently changing the “old nature” in you. We must decrease and He must increase. This is a circumcision of the heart not just self-denial. When you change unacceptable behaviors out of your own will power there will always be inner drives continually trying to sabotage your efforts. But when Christ lives in you and you have made room for Him by surrendering to Him, then you will have victory and joy because it is Christ in you that gives the power. You do this by daily coming before God and opening yourselves up to His examination. You ask and allow God to reveal to you what direction you should take. You surrender completely to His control. It is a step by step process that will take the rest of your life, but it is worked at daily. As you move closer and closer to Him, His life will be lived in you and you will share His glory.

Have a God Day!

Printer Friendly Version Printer Friendly Version
March 4, 2009: 5:48 pm: Daily Scripture

Acts 2:36-42
36 So let it be clearly known by everyone in Israel that God has made this Jesus whom you crucified to be both Lord and Messiah!” 37 Peter’s words convicted them deeply, and they said to him and to the other apostles, “Brothers, what should we do?” 38 Peter replied, “Each of you must turn from your sins and turn to God, and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. Then you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 This promise is to you and to your children, and even to the Gentiles-all who have been called by the Lord our God.” 40 Then Peter continued preaching for a long time, strongly urging all his listeners, “Save yourselves from this generation that has gone astray!” 41 Those who believed what Peter said were baptized and added to the church-about three thousand in all. 42 They joined with the other believers and devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and fellowship, sharing in the Lord’s Supper and in prayer.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

This is the age old question asked by man, “What should we do?” But in order for man to ask himself this question, he has to realize his sin. The world we live in today does not see sin. Society does not want to be told that what they are doing is sin. So they label it something else. It is called a disease or they state I was born this way. People do not want to hear that what they are doing is contrary to the Word of God and is sin. As we get closer to the end of this age, we will see this happen more and more. What was once good will become bad and what was once bad will become good. As Christians we need to ask ourselves, “What should we do?” If there are people you are praying for to know the love of God and salvation, then we must bind the spirit of lawlessness that grips their hearts and minds. Once people choose sin and continue in it, the sin becomes less and less wrong. It is justified in their minds as normal so they do not feel bad about themselves. They become deceived. We need to pray and loose the strongholds of deception and lies that holds them and then bind them to the work of the Cross. We bind them to grace and forgiveness and to the Blood of Jesus. The Holy Spirit will begin to remove the strongholds that keep them from seeing the light of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. You can not pray salvation for them but you can release the power of the sin that holds them and release the power of God to show them. Then they will ask, “What should I do to be saved?” Keep praying, keep believing and God will keeping moving in their lives to bring them to this point.

Have a God Day!

Printer Friendly Version Printer Friendly Version