Archive for January, 2016

January 28, 2016: 9:18 pm: God in us

 

John 3:5-18
5 Jesus replied, “The truth is, no one can enter the Kingdom of God without being born of water and the Spirit. 6 Humans can reproduce only human life, but the Holy Spirit gives new life from heaven. 7 So don’t be surprised at my statement that you must be born again. 8 Just as you can hear the wind but can’t tell where it comes from or where it is going, so you can’t explain how people are born of the Spirit.” 9 “What do you mean?” Nicodemus asked. 10 Jesus replied, “You are a respected Jewish teacher, and yet you don’t understand these things? 11 I assure you, I am telling you what we know and have seen, and yet you won’t believe us. 12 But if you don’t even believe me when I tell you about things that happen here on earth, how can you possibly believe if I tell you what is going on in heaven? 13 For only I, the Son of Man, have come to earth and will return to heaven again. 14 And as Moses lifted up the bronze snake on a pole in the wilderness, so I, the Son of Man, must be lifted up on a pole, 15 so that everyone who believes in me will have eternal life. 16 “For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. 17 God did not send his Son into the world to condemn it, but to save it. 18 “There is no judgment awaiting those who trust him. But those who do not trust him have already been judged for not believing in the only Son of God. 19 Their judgment is based on this fact: The light from heaven came into the world, but they loved the darkness more than the light, for their actions were evil. 20 They hate the light because they want to sin in the darkness. They stay away from the light for fear their sins will be exposed and they will be punished. 21 But those who do what is right come to the light gladly, so everyone can see that they are doing what God wants.”
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

“For God so loved the world…” Probably the most known scripture verse, and yet people who do not know God will ask, “If God loves me so much then why did so and so die, or why is there sickness, or why do bad things happen to good people?” Have you ever been asked this question and not known how to answer? Well, you are not alone. But to explain to the unsaved why these things happen is a very important concept in understanding the grace of God. What Adam and Eve did not understand when God told them, “If you eat of the fruit of this tree, you will surely die,” was that every person born after them would also die. Every living thing around us is dying. From the moment of conception, we all start to die. And because of sin in this world, nothing is perfect. So things go wrong in our bodies, people get sick or are born defective. The greatest lie Satan tells people, is that, “If God loves you so much then why did you your child die, or mother, or whoever?” And we believe him. But God never promised us our bodies on earth would never get sick and die, only that He would bring us through it and we would be with Him after we leave this world. So the rain falls on the just and the unjust. Everyone is subject to death. Living with faith in a world of death cannot be done without the power of the Holy Spirit. Once we believe in Christ and are saved from our sin, there is no judgment for sin for us ever. Believe Him and trust Him to bring you through what ever it is you will face in this world!

Have a God Day!

 

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January 27, 2016: 11:37 pm: Return of Christ

Jude 17-23
But you, my dear friends, must remember what the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ told you, 18 that in the last times there would be scoffers whose purpose in life is to enjoy themselves in every evil way imaginable. 19 Now they are here, and they are the ones who are creating divisions among you. They live by natural instinct because they do not have God’s Spirit living in them. 20 But you, dear friends, must continue to build your lives on the foundation of your holy faith. And continue to pray as you are directed by the Holy Spirit. 21 Live in such a way that God’s love can bless you as you wait for the eternal life that our Lord Jesus Christ in his mercy is going to give you. 22 Show mercy to those whose faith is wavering. 23 Rescue others by snatching them from the flames of judgment. There are still others to whom you need to show mercy, but be careful that you aren’t contaminated by their sins.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

The “last times” or “last days” started when Jesus left this world. It is the period of time between the end of His first coming and the beginning of His second coming. We live in the last days. John is warning us to live close to God because there will be false teachers who would try and pull us away from God. He tells us not to take witnessing lightly for it is a matter of life and death. We are to hate sin, but we must witness to and love the sinner. For we must remember that we were on our way to Hell when Christ saved us. Once we were lost and without the Light of Christ within us. And no one is any better than any other person. We all have sinned and all of us need the saving grace of Christ Jesus. So we have common ground with all around us. Make sure your footing is secure and grounded in the love of God when you reach out to the unsaved. Because it is easy to be pulled into their sin if you are not. Remember, you are a child of the King and need to influence them for Christ and don’t allow them to influence you to sin. Christ is coming soon and He stated He would come like a thief in the night. No warning will be given. The trumpet will sound and the dead in Christ will rise ahead of those who are alive and are in Christ. Christ will be our judge and He will separate the goats from the sheep. Be prepared, be a child of the Living God!

Have a God Day!

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January 26, 2016: 8:40 pm: Daily Scripture

 

Colossians 1:9-14
9 So we have continued praying for you ever since we first heard about you. 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.

All Christians want complete understanding of what God wants us to do in our lives. We all seek to be wise with spiritual wisdom. But that is as far as many go, just the wanting. Most Christians know that they should be growing and becoming more like Christ. As each day goes by they aren’t sure how to achieve it. Many make the mistake of looking at the overall perfection of Christ and know that they can never achieve that and just don’t even try. We will never in this life reach perfection, so why even bother. This attitude will hold back the power of Christ working within you to become more like Him. It is God’s plan for every Christian to work at becoming more like Him. It is the working and becoming more like Him that counts, because we will never be complete until we are with Him. No one can say, “I’m not sure what God wants me to do with my life.” The plan is the same for all of us, “Become more like Christ!” Start with very small steps. We all know that we are to read His Word and spend time in prayer. Start by simply taking 5-10 minutes a day doing this and when it becomes a habit, slowly increase. As you spend time in the Word, you will find that you will want to do so. Listen only to Christian music during your day, this will keep you in atmosphere of worship. Keep a very short prayer list and pray everyday. When one is answered add another. Keep it short and simple. Take small baby steps and see what a difference it can make. Your effort will pay off as God will continue to strengthen you.

Have a God Day!

 

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January 22, 2016: 12:19 am: God in us

Ephesians 5:15-20
15 So be careful how you live, not as fools but as those who are wise. 16 Make the most of every opportunity for doing good in these evil days. 17 Don’t act thoughtlessly, but try to understand what the Lord wants you to do. 18 Don’t be drunk with wine, because that will ruin your life. Instead, let the Holy Spirit fill and control you. 19 Then you will sing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs among yourselves, making music to the Lord in your hearts. 20 And you will always give thanks for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

One of the keys to success is to live what we know. Many of us know a lot of things but only live a small portion of our knowledge. Being wise is to apply the things that we know. It is very easy to take the path of least resistance and let our emotions and feelings dictate how and what we will do. Our behavior shows what is controlling us. It is far too easy to just do what “feels” good and only those things that give us pleasure. This is the aspect of a child. It is adult to do the things that are not fun or easy but need to be done anyway. So it is with our walk with God. Christianity is not the easy road. We must die to self and let Christ live through us. We must be Christ to the world. This means living the things we know, applying His truth. The Holy Spirit controlled Christian is the Christian at peace. This doesn’t mean we never fail it only means we keep learning and living what we have learned. Take a small step today and apply one thing you know is true. Focus on that one small thing every day and see what a difference it will make in your life.

Have a God Day!

 

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January 21, 2016: 8:41 pm: Return of Christ

Mark 13:14-27
14 “The time will come when you will see the sacrilegious object that causes desecration standing where it should not be–reader, pay attention! “Then those in Judea must flee to the hills. 15 A person outside the house must not go back into the house to pack. 16 A person in the field must not return even to get a coat. 17 How terrible it will be for pregnant women and for mothers nursing their babies in those days. 18 And pray that your flight will not be in winter. 19 For those will be days of greater horror than at any time since God created the world. And it will never happen again. 20 In fact, unless the Lord shortens that time of calamity, the entire human race will be destroyed. But for the sake of his chosen ones he has shortened those days. 21 “And then if anyone tells you, ‘Look, here is the Messiah,’ or, ‘There he is,’ don’t pay any attention. 22 For false messiahs and false prophets will rise up and perform miraculous signs and wonders so as to deceive, if possible, even God’s chosen ones. 23 Watch out! I have warned you! 24 “At that time, after those horrible days end, the sun will be darkened, the moon will not give light, 25 the stars will fall from the sky, and the powers of heaven will be shaken. 26 Then everyone will see the Son of Man arrive on the clouds with great power and glory. 27 And he will send forth his angels to gather together his chosen ones from all over the world–from the farthest ends of the earth and heaven.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

The “sacrilegious object that causes desecration” refers to the statue of the Antichrist in the Temple of God and Antichrist setting himself up as if he were God. Christ has given instructions to us about His Second Coming. And He tells us in verse 26 that everyone will see the Son of Man arrive on the clouds. There have been similar sacrilegious objects that have caused desecration throughout history and because of those events; people believe that the judgment Christ said was coming has already happened. In 168 B.C. Antiochus Epiphanes came into the Temple of God and sacrificed a pig to Zeus on the Temple altar. And in A.D. 70 the Romans completely destroyed the Temple and then placed an idol on the site. But do not be deceived because Christ is very clear that this event would take place right before His Second Coming. When He comes again, no one will need to tell you because everyone living in the world at that time will know He has returned. No one will need to be told. We know that Christ has not returned at this time, so His return is yet in our future. And these events in the Temple are in the future because there isn’t a Temple for the Jews to sacrifice. But we must be prepared for His return at any minute because before He judges the world; He will remove His people from the earth. To be ready for His return is to be living Christ to the world around you. Waiting and watching for His Second Coming will keep you living for Him and will continue the process of sanctification in you.

Have a God Day!

 

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January 20, 2016: 10:12 pm: God in us

 

Habakkuk 2:9-14
9 “How terrible it will be for you who get rich by unjust means! You believe your wealth will buy security, putting your families beyond the reach of danger. 10 But by the murders you committed, you have shamed your name and forfeited your lives. 11 The very stones in the walls of your houses cry out against you, and the beams in the ceilings echo the complaint. 12 “How terrible it will be for you who build cities with money gained by murder and corruption! 13 Has not the Lord Almighty promised that the wealth of nations will turn to ashes? They work so hard, but all in vain! 14 For the time will come when all the earth will be filled, as the waters fill the sea, with an awareness of the glory of the Lord.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

Today many live in fear of war, financial disaster and disease. Terrorist attacks are on every mind. The world has nothing to offer but pain and destruction. And yet many continue to trust in the things that their hands have made. Idolatry may seem like a sin that modern people do not commit. But it is not just bowing down to idols, it is trusting in what one has made. If we trust in what we have made, we are trusting in our own power as creator and sustainer. If we say we worship God but put our trust in bank accounts, homes, businesses and governments, than we are idolaters. We must live above the circumstances of this world and everything it has to offer. It is all corruptible and will someday be gone. The only thing that will last is the love that flows through us from God the Father. Habakkuk 2:4 states, “Look at the proud! They trust in themselves, and their lives are crooked; but the righteous will live by their faith.” Do not put your trust in the gifts God has given you. Recognize the Giver and put your trust in Him and Him alone. Do not let your feelings be controlled by the events happening in the world today but by faith in God’s ability to direct all things according to His purpose and His ability to give you strength.

Have a God Day!

 

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January 15, 2016: 10:21 pm: Prayer

John 16: 29-33
31 Jesus asked, “Do you finally believe? 32 But the time is coming-in fact, it is already here-when you will be scattered, each one going his own way, leaving me alone. Yet I am not alone because the Father is with me. 33 I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.”
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

The instructions that Jesus gave us reflect how He lived His life while He was here on the earth. He told us not to be alarmed when we have trials and problems. He had them, and so would we. We have all suffered from struggles, problems and trials. Some have suffered more than others, but all of those in Christ will experience them. How we deal with them is another question. How we handle our grief is dependent on how we have built our life in Him. If you are about to set sail to cross the ocean do you want to get on a ship that was just built for smooth sailing or do you want to get on the ship that can handle the storm? Of course we expect smooth sailing, but in the event that something should change, don’t you want to be on the ship that can take the unstable sea? The same goes for our lives. We need to build our life on the principles of the Word of God and live as Jesus lived. If we know Him and know His Word, we will be prepared for anything this world can throw at us. We expect smooth sailing, but we also know that problems will come. Those who build their lives on Christ are prepared for the most difficult illness, financial problem or even death of a loved one. They are prepared before the trail comes because they have built their life on the Rock. When you know Him, you know peace no matter what your circumstance. Because your peace is based on His promise and not on the outcome of your situation, you will weather the storm. Even in your sorrow, you have a sense of well being because you know He is with you and will never leave. So don’t set sail in life without preparing. Be grounded in His Word, know Him and you will know peace.

Have a God Day!

 

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January 14, 2016: 10:41 pm: Grace

 

Romans 8:35-39
35 Can anything ever separate us from Christ’s love? Does it mean he no longer loves us if we have trouble or calamity, or are persecuted, or are hungry or cold or in danger or threatened with death? 36 (Even the Scriptures say, “For your sake we are killed every day; we are being slaughtered like sheep.”) 37 No, despite all these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us. 38 And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from his love. Death can’t, and life can’t. The angels can’t, and the demons can’t. Our fears for today, our worries about tomorrow, and even the powers of hell can’t keep God’s love away. 39 Whether we are high above the sky or in the deepest ocean, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

Sometimes when we are facing overwhelming trouble the first thing we think is God has deserted us. But just the opposite is true. Sometimes the trouble is used by God to make us more into His image. But God does not cause our pain, but He will use it to help us change and grow. Bad things happen to us for 3 reasons; 1.) We live in a world of sin, so every person alive today is dying, all of us will suffer from our bodies dying one way or another. And because of sin there is evil in the world and bad things will happen. 2.) Sometimes our own behaviors or choices will cause bad things to happen to us. Not all the time, but sometimes we make the wrong choice and suffer the consequences of our choice. 3.) Sometimes we suffer because we serve a Lord the world does not recognize and are persecuted because we serve Him and not the world. Most of the time our troubles are because of the first two reasons, but whatever the reason, it is more important to know that nothing ever happens to you that is not God filtered. In other words, God knew about it and it happened. But more important is the fact that God will never leave you or leave you without hope. Just because He does not remove everything that comes against you, does not mean He does not love you. He gives you the strength and the direction to go through the trial and to become stronger because of it. God has a vision of the sanctified you and He is working out His plan to bring you to the perfection of Christ. You need to be re-trained by God to become like Christ and sometimes that means overcoming your sinful self. That is not always easy, but is always for your good. So never forget how much God loves you and that He will never leave you alone. You can do all things through Christ who strengthens you!

Have a God Day!

 

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January 13, 2016: 10:49 pm: Grace

1 Timothy 1:12-17
12 How thankful I am to Christ Jesus our Lord for considering me trustworthy and appointing me to serve him, 13 even though I used to scoff at the name of Christ. I hunted down his people, harming them in every way I could. But God had mercy on me because I did it in ignorance and unbelief. 14 Oh, how kind and gracious the Lord was! He filled me completely with faith and the love of Christ Jesus. 15 This is a true saying, and everyone should believe it: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners and I was the worst of them all. 16 But that is why God had mercy on me, so that Christ Jesus could use me as a prime example of his great patience with even the worst sinners. Then others will realize that they, too, can believe in him and receive eternal life. 17 Glory and honor to God forever and ever. He is the eternal King, the unseen one who never dies; he alone is God. Amen.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL:Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

This is a very important verse of Scripture because it affirms that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners. He didn’t come to be the greatest teacher the world has ever known, although He was. He didn’t come to set a moral example, but He did do that. He came into the world to save sinners. When you give your testimony make sure that you don’t tell people how wonderful you are or all you have accomplished. Tell them you were a sinner and that Christ saved you. That is what is important. When Paul says he was the chief of sinners, he is speaking the truth. He was the chief of sinners; he blasphemed the Lord Jesus. But, Paul says, I’ve been saved. The Lord Jesus came to save sinners, and if you say, I don’t think Christ can save me I’m the worst, you are wrong. Paul is the chief of sinners, and the chief of sinners has already been saved. So you will be able to be saved if you want to be. The decision rests with you. All you need do is turn to Christ, and He’ll do the rest.
J. Vernon McGee, Thru the Bible commentary [computer file], electronic ed., Logos Library System,(Nashville: Thomas Nelson) 1997, c1981 by J. Vernon
McGee.

Have a God Day!

 

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January 12, 2016: 8:53 pm: Grace

1 Corinthians 15:40-44
40 There are bodies in the heavens, and there are bodies on earth. The glory of the heavenly bodies is different from the beauty of the earthly bodies. 41 The sun has one kind of glory, while the moon and stars each have another kind. And even the stars differ from each other in their beauty and brightness. 42 It is the same way for the resurrection of the dead. Our earthly bodies, which die and decay, will be different when they are resurrected, for they will never die. 43 Our bodies now disappoint us, but when they are raised, they will be full of glory. They are weak now, but when they are raised, they will be full of power. 44 They are natural human bodies now, but when they are raised, they will be spiritual bodies. For just as there are natural bodies, so also there are spiritual bodies.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

Because Christ rose from the dead, He is a life-giving Spirit. This means that He entered into a new form of existence. He is the source of the spiritual life that will result in our resurrection. Christ’s new glorified human body was suitable to His natural life. He walked and talked and lived as a human after He rose from the dead. His disciples did not always know Him as Jesus, but they knew Him as a human because that was the form His resurrected body was in. And so it will be for those of us who believe in the work He did on the cross. When we are resurrected, God will give us a transformed eternal body suited to our new eternal life. So when the body you are in now fails you, remember it is just dust and will one day be gone. It just houses your spirit and will one day return to the earth. But you will go on forever and Christ will give you a new body that is not corrupted and will never get sick or die. So face the limitations of this body with the confidence that one day you will have a body that will never get old and never get sick. Praise His name forever!

Have a God Day!

 

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