Archive for October, 2010

October 29, 2010: 6:19 pm: Daily Scripture

Colossians 1:9-14
We ask God to give you a complete understanding of what he wants to do in your lives, and we ask him to make you wise with spiritual wisdom. 10 Then the way you live will always honor and please the Lord, and you will continually do good, kind things for others. All the while, you will learn to know God better and better. 11 We also pray that you will be strengthened with his glorious power so that you will have all the patience and endurance you need. May you be filled with joy, 12 always thanking the Father, who has enabled you to share the inheritance that belongs to God’s holy people, who live in the light. 13 For he has rescued us from the one who rules in the kingdom of darkness, and he has brought us into the Kingdom of his dear Son. 14 God has purchased our freedom with his blood and has forgiven all our sins.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

Sometimes we wonder how to pray for others or even how to pray for ourselves.  Paul is speaking to the Colossians what his prayer for them was.  This is what we should pray when God brings people to mind and we should also say this prayer over our own lives.  Paul had never met them and had never been to the city of Colosse, but he knew what all those in Christ needed and that is what he prayed for.  We all need to (1)understand what God wants us to do by knowing Him and obeying Him, (2)gain spiritual wisdom, (3)honor and please God by obedience, (4)continually do good for others, (5)learn to know God better and better so we can be like Him, (6)be strengthened with God’s power through being connected to Him, (7)have patience and endurance, (8)stay full of the joy of Christ because He died for our sin, (9)and always give thanks to God for all that He had done for us.  All believers have these same basic needs and even though you may not know what to pray for, start with this prayer of Paul.  It will cover all of what you need to grow in Christ and to become Christ to the world around you.

Have a God Day!

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October 27, 2010: 7:03 pm: Daily Scripture

Nehemiah 8:8-10
8 They read from the Book of the Law of God and clearly explained the meaning of what was being read, helping the people understand each passage. 9 Then Nehemiah the governor, Ezra the priest and scribe, and the Levites who were interpreting for the people said to them, “Don’t weep on such a day as this! For today is a sacred day before the Lord your God.” All the people had been weeping as they listened to the words of the law. 10 And Nehemiah continued, “Go and celebrate with a feast of choice foods and sweet drinks, and share gifts of food with people who have nothing prepared. This is a sacred day before our Lord. Don’t be dejected and sad, for the joy of the Lord is your strength!”
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

Why would the joy of the Lord be our strength?  It seems like our joy should be our strength.  But Nehemiah is telling us that when we recognize our sin by reading the Word of God, we realize how much we have sinned against God.  The Jews who had returned to Israel after 70 years of exile and realized how much they and their ancestors had sinned and this made them very sad.  But God was pleased because you can not make a change if you do not know there is a problem.  And the people realized how much they had sinned and knew they had to change.  They realized that they needed to obey the Word of God.  This made God joyful.  It is the recognition and repentance of our sins that is the joy of the Lord.  And when we make Him happy by realizing and repenting of our sin, this is our strength.  That is why Nehemiah said, “Don’t be dejected and sad, for the joy of the Lord is your strength!”  Reading and studying the Word of God should cut through our lives like a knife and expose our sin.  As we realize our sin, we turn to God for forgiveness and strength.  It is our repentance that strengthens us and our willingness to obey God that gives Him joy and this in turn gives us strength.  Make God joyful today as you read His Word realize and repent.  Determine to live according to His Word an you will find strength.

Have a God Day!

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October 26, 2010: 6:16 pm: Daily Scripture

James 4:1-6
1 What is causing the quarrels and fights among you? Isn’t it the whole army of evil desires at war within you? 2 You want what you don’t have, so you scheme and kill to get it. You are jealous for what others have and you can’t possess it so you fight and quarrel to take it away from them. And yet the reason you don’t have what you want is that you don’t ask God for it. 3 And even when you do ask, you don’t get it because your whole motive is wrong-you want only what will give you pleasure. 4 You adulterers! Don’t you realize that friendship with this world makes you an enemy of God? I say it again, that if your aim is to enjoy this world, you can’t be a friend of God. 5 What do you think the Scriptures mean when they say that the Holy Spirit, whom God has placed within us, jealously longs for us to be faithful? 6 He gives us more and more strength to stand against such evil desires. As the Scriptures say, “God sets himself against the proud, but he shows favor to the humble.”
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

Most people want what they want when they want it. When we don’t get what we want, there is conflict. If we are focused only on ourselves and our need, then we will be in constant conflict with the people around us. James is telling us this comes from our sinful nature. It is natural for us to think only of ourselves. Humans will always seek the path of least resistance and seek out what is good for them. But when the Holy Spirit lives within us, we now have the nature of God living in us and making us into His image. As a Christian, we are being made into the likeness of Jesus Christ when we live in obedience to Him. We don’t have victory because we don’t ask God to help us. We don’t surrender our sinful natures to Him. If we ask, God will give us more and more strength to stand against our evil natures. Allow God to change your desires so that they correspond to His will for you. Don’t let your pride direct you into only what pleases you. Allow the Spirit of God within you to lead and direct you into His perfect will. God has placed His Holy Spirit within you and longs for your faithfulness to Him. Go against the natural and step into the supernatural power of God with you!

Have a God Day!

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October 25, 2010: 8:07 pm: Daily Scripture

Philippians 4:4-9
4 Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice! 5 Let your gentleness be known to all men. The Lord is at hand. 6 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; 7 and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. 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 you put into your mind determines your words and your actions.  It is true that if garbage goes in, garbage will come out.  Paul is telling you to program your mind with thoughts that are pure and true.  If you are not thinking like a child of God, but are thinking as the world thinks, you are of the world.  But those who have accepted God’s gift of grace through Christ Jesus, belong to another world.  Your thoughts should be of His world.  Your thoughts should be of the Kingdom of God.  As the stated in the Lord’s prayer in Luke 11:2, “Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.”  the Lord’s will is done in His kingdom and those who belong to Him need to keep their in thoughts in His kingdom.  Examine what you are putting into your mind through books, television, conversations, movies, and magazines.  Do they fit into the will of God?  If not, then remove them and replace them with the things that are of the will of God.  Above all read His Word and pray.  Ask God to help you identify thoughts that are not of Him and then for power to stop thinking them and replace those thoughts with the truth of His Word. It will take practice, but it can be done for those who know the will of God and have the power of His Spirit to guard and help them.

Have a God Day!

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October 22, 2010: 6:29 pm: Daily Scripture

Ephesians 6:10-18
10 A final word: Be strong with the Lord’s mighty power. 11 Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies and tricks of the Devil. 12 For we are not fighting against people made of flesh and blood, but against the evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against those mighty powers of darkness who rule this world, and against wicked spirits in the heavenly realms. 13 Use every piece of God’s armor to resist the enemy in the time of evil, so that after the battle you will still be standing firm. 14 stand your ground, putting on the sturdy belt of truth and the body armor of God’s righteousness. 15 For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News, so that you will be fully prepared. 16 In every battle you will need faith as your shield to stop the fiery arrows aimed at you by Satan. 17 Put on salvation as your helmet, and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. 18 Pray at all times and on every occasion in the power of the Holy Spirit. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all Christians everywhere.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

Christians face a powerful army whose goal is to make us fail. When you believe in Christ, these beings become our enemies, and they try to turn you away from God and back into sin. If they cannot do this, they will try and make you a weak ineffective Christian. When this happens, you are not living under the authority that Christ died to give you. Satan does this by controlling your thoughts. He sets up strongholds in your mind that prevent the truth from setting you free. A stronghold is any thought that is contrary to the Word of God and you believe. Most of the time, you will not even know a stronghold is set up in your mind. The only way you will know there are strongholds in your mind is when you are not living a peaceful productive Christian life. This is when you put on the whole armor of God and fight against Satan. Strongholds are when you say to yourself, “I’ll never be able to overcome this sin, I don’t think I am saved, I can’t live the way Jesus did,” Knowing and standing on the truth of God’s Word is the only way to fight the enemy. These statements are strongholds of the enemy in your mind. They are wrong beliefs. The Word states, “I can do all things through Christ”, you are saved by the Blood of Christ and when you trust in the Lord with all your heart and His Word in your mind will help you stop these thoughts. This is truth; this is the armor of God. Believe in Him who died for your sin, not in the lies of this world.

Have a God Day!

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October 21, 2010: 5:03 pm: Daily Scripture

Philippians 3:12-16
12 I don’t mean to say that I have already achieved these things or that I have already reached perfection! But I keep working toward that day when I will finally be all that Christ Jesus saved me for and wants me to be. 13 No, dear brothers and sisters, I am still not all I should be, but I am focusing all my energies on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, 14 I strain to reach the end of the race and receive the prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us up to heaven. 15 I hope all of you who are mature Christians will agree on these things. If you disagree on some point, I believe God will make it plain to you. 16 But we must be sure to obey the truth we have learned already.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

Paul used perfection to mean mature or complete, not flawless in every detail.  Those who are mature should press on toward the goal of becoming like Christ in attitude, thought and action.  Christian maturity involves acting on the knowledge that you have already received.  Remember wisdom is applied knowledge and we can always make excuses that we have so much to learn.  But acting on or applying the knowledge you already have of the Word is what God wants you to do.  Paul instructs you to live up to what you already know and live out what you have already learned. Forget your past mistakes and do not look back.  It is difficult to move forward if you are constantly looking back.  Keep working toward to the day when you will be all that Christ knows you are. 

Have a God Day!

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October 20, 2010: 5:49 pm: Daily Scripture

John 1:1-14
1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was in the beginning with God. 3 All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made. 4 In Him was life, and the life was the light of men. 5 And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it. 6 There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. 7 This man came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all through him might believe. 8 He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light. 9 That was the true Light which gives light to every man coming into the world. 10 He was in the world, and the world was made through Him, and the world did not know Him. 11 He came to His own, and His own did not receive Him. 12 But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name: 13 who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. 14 And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.
The Holy Bible, New King James Version, (Nashville, Tennessee: Thomas Nelson, Inc.) 1982.

The Incarnation was the act of the pre-existent Son of God voluntarily assuming a human body and human nature.  Without ceasing to be God, He became a human being, He became the Man called Jesus.  He did not give up His deity to become human, but He set aside the right to His glory and power.  In submission to the Father’s will, Christ limited His power and His knowledge.  Jesus of Nazareth was subject to place, time and many other human limitations. What made His humanity unique was His freedom from sin.  In His full humanity, Jesus showed everything about God’s character that can be conveyed in human terms.  And every miracle Christ did was under the direction of the Father and with the power of the Holy Spirit.  He had a full measure of the Holy Spirit working through Him as a human. 

The deity of Christ is the point that every cult will focus on.  If an organization does not acknowledge the deity of Christ, they are outside of Him.  Look to this point before you belive anything anyone tells you.  If Christ was not fully God and fully human, He could not have died for our sins and there would be no reconciliation with God. He had to be fully human to die and He had to be fully God to be without sin. Jesus stated in John 14:6, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me.”  There is no other way to God except through Christ and all those outside of the grace of Christ will perish eternally.  We did not make the rules, God did and it is not for humans to decide what works and what does not.  God is our answer and only through Him will we be saved from our sins.  Don’t believe anything outside of Christ for the truth.  And look to what the Word of God states.  Put your trust in Him through His Word.

Have a God Day!

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October 19, 2010: 8:25 pm: Daily Scripture

James 5:16-18
16 Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and wonderful results. 17 Elijah was as human as we are, and yet when he prayed earnestly that no rain would fall, none fell for the next three and a half years! 18 Then he prayed for rain, and down it poured. The grass turned green, and the crops began to grow again.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

As believers in Christ, all our sins are forgiven.  His death cleansed us from all sin.  Why do we then still confess our sins?  Confession is more than appropriating Christ’s forgiveness for what we have done wrong.  Confession is agreeing with God that our thoughts, words or actions are wrong and are contrary to His will.  It is an act of recommitting ourselves to do His will and repent of any acts of disobedience. Sin always separates us for God. so when we go to Him in prayer for our needs, we want nothing to separate us from The Father, so we confess our sins to Him.  Doing so does not mean we have lost our salvation, it simply means that we agree with God that we have stepped outside of His will. We do not have to confess sins that were previously confessed.  Confessing over and over again the same sin once confessed is not accepting God’s grace once given.  Once you confess a sin, leave it before God and do not go back to the sin by thinking about it.  Rebuke it from your thoughts and live under the grace God has given you.  Confession involves turning away from all known sin and asking God for a fresh start to live for Him.  And only He can give us the power to do so, but we must stay connected to Him.

Have a God Day!

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October 15, 2010: 7:42 pm: Daily Scripture

Esther 4:13-17
13 Mordecai sent back this reply to Esther: “Don’t think for a moment that you will escape there in the palace when all other Jews are killed. 14 If you keep quiet at a time like this, deliverance for the Jews will arise from some other place, but you and your relatives will die. What’s more, who can say but that you have been elevated to the palace for just such a time as this?” 15 Then Esther sent this reply to Mordecai: 16 “Go and gather together all the Jews of Susa and fast for me. Do not eat or drink for three days, night or day. My maids and I will do the same. And then, though it is against the law, I will go in to see the king. If I must die. I am willing to die.” 17 So Mordecai went away and did as Esther told him.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

Esther is the only book in the Bible that God is not called by name. Mordecai is Esther’s uncle and they are Jews in exile in Persia. Esther is very beautiful and Mordecai brings her to the palace to see if King Xerxes would select her to be his wife. He does and she is now in a position of power. Haman is over Mordecai and when Mordecai will not bow down and worship him, Haman plots to kill not only Mordecai but all the Jews. Mordecai goes to Esther and asks her to go to the king and plead their case but she is afraid because she can not approach the king unless he has summoned her. She could be put to death if she makes him angry. But Mordecai is a great man of God and he tells her that she was put in the palace for such a time as this! What a powerful witness. He is confident that if Esther will not step up to help, that God has another way to do so. This is the kind of faith that we need in our circumstances today. Even though we cannot see a way out, God is in control and He will make a way. Read the entire book of Esther and see how God delivered the Jews. And believe God for the circumstances you are in today. He is the same God today that He was 2500 years ago.

Have a God Day! 

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October 14, 2010: 7:12 pm: Daily Scripture

Colossians 3:12-17
12 Since God chose you to be the holy people whom he loves, you must clothe yourselves with tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. 13 You must make allowance for each other’s faults and forgive the person who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others. 14 And the most important piece of clothing you must wear is love. Love is what binds us all together in perfect harmony. 15 And let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts. For as members of one body you are all called to live in peace. And always be thankful. 16 Let the words of Christ, in all their richness, live in your hearts and make you wise. Use his words to teach and counsel each other. Sing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs to God with thankful hearts. 17 And whatever you do or say, let it be as a representative of the Lord Jesus, all the while giving thanks through him to God the Father.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House publishers, Inc.) 1996.

Love is not just a feeling it is a decision to meet the need’s of another. Paul is saying we are to “put on” love. We are to act love to the people we come into contact with. It starts with our thinking and then leads to actions of love and then we “feel” love. This is true with any relationship you have and even with casual contact with strangers. The rule is to give love and you will then live in peace with all those around you. This does not mean that suddenly all differences of opinion disappear, but it does require that you work together despite your differences. To love does not mean you agree with everything someone else does. But you continue to offer loving acceptance and giving in spite of their weaknesses. Isn’t this what Christ offered to you? How can we give any less than what He gave to us? Living in love is truly letting the words of Christ, in all their richness, live in your hearts and makes you wise.

Have a God Day!

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