Devotional Thought for Today – 10/23/2020

angry emoji - Bing images | Angry emoji, Cool emoji, Funny emoji

PSALM 4 

Anger is a natural outpouring if the unregenerate man. Here in Psalm 4 David begins by with a prayer, begging God to deal with his enemies v.1-3.  When we get to v.4 David instructs his enemies to turn (repent) from their anger Be angry,2 and do not sin; (ESV); turning to God v.5.  David concludes v.6-8 by praises and expressing his trust in God. 

In the New Testament Paul writes to the church at Ephesus the about the same subject Ephesians 4:26-31, making it clear that righteous anger (we should be angry with abortions, LBGT, Suppression of Christianity, ETC.) yet in our anger we must;  do no sin; do not let your anger [cause you shame, nor allow it to] last until the sun goes down. In other words our anger must be biblically based. Does the object of our anger go against the expressed word of God?  

Oh there will be occasions when the neighbor blasts their music to load, or has a messy yard or some other such thing that will upset you.  Maybe you come home after a long hard day at work and the washer overflows. Reasons to be upset maybe reasons to lash out (anger must be biblically based) not at all. 

Yet in the end our human nature may take over and Anger would seem to be unavoidable. It is how we act in our anger that makes all the difference.  Will people, (family, feinds, co-workers) see us as just another fake Christian or will they see us a a reflection of the Light of Christ? 

 

Devotional Thought for Today – 10/22/2020

Jesus and the Ten Lepers – Parables of Jesus – Abundant Life GP

Luke 17:11-19


Developing an Attitude of Gratitude 

Some context here, Jesus is on His way to Jerusalem and come upon a group of 10 Lepers. Think for a moment how in is this time period Leprosy (any skin abnormality like psoriasis  included) meant you were cast out of the cities to live isolated either alone or with others with skin diseases. Here comes Jesus and they seize upon an opportunity to cry out Jesus, Master, have mercy on us. 

Jesus tells them to go shew themselves to the chief priest at the temple (a required verification to be deemed clean and therefore a member of society) and as they went away they were cleansed. 

Remember these men had been society’s outcasts and now are healed what should there reaction be? The bible tells us only one had an Attitude of Gratitude and he was as the bible points out a Samaritan.  

This story tells us of a problem that many modern day Christians can have complacency. We expect God to do certain things in our lives so we “forget” to be grateful when they are accomplished.  I will leave you today with a quote: 

“Edwards [Jonathan Edwards] calls the deeper, primary form of thankfulness ‘gracious gratitude.’ It gives thanks not for goods received, but for who God is: for His character — His goodness, love, power, excellencies — regardless of favors received. And it’s real evidence of the Holy Spirit working in a person’s life.” –Chuck Colson

 

 

Devotional Thought for Today – 10/19/2020

1 Thessalonians 4:9-10 Pg 1048 In Church Bibles. - ppt video online download

In context of course Paul is speaking about comforting one another (like-minded believers) about the return of Christ 1 Thessalonians 4:14-18.

Yet is it not the “Christian” duty to comfort one another whenever possible? Not just here as Paul describes  Christ’s return but in all things.  Here are some of my favorite verses on the subject:

Romans 15:5 – Working to build up our neighbors

1 Thessalonians 5:11 – Building each other up through comfort and encouragement

Hebrews 10:23-25 – Encouraging one another to to love and to do good deeds

We all have busy lives, often too busy for those around us, but make an effort to see those in need, say a kind word and share the Love of Christ today. 

 

5 Questions about Homosexuality

5 Questions about Homosexuality

Kevin DeYoung

Q. If the Bible says so little about homosexuality, why do Christians insist on talking about it so much?

A. – The reason the Bible says comparatively little about homosexuality is because it was a comparatively uncontroversial sin among ancient Jews and Christians…

READ MORE

Devotional Thought – 10-13-2020

Logos.com

AMP and RVR 1960


There are three types of “Christians” in the world. You are probably thinking I have gone off my rocker but hear me out. If we take this one verse in context 2 Corinthians 6:14-18  I believe we can see them all. Paul tells us that Light (God and His chosen) can have no fellowship (union) with Darkness (Satan, sin and unbelief). 

The pretenders: Those who remain unequally bound together with unbelievers they try and live in both worlds and as Christ relates to John will be spit out Revelation 3:14-16 in the end. 

The Legalist: You know these folks they seperate from all things (except maybe nice cloths, cars, homes etc.) They do not smoke, drink, go to movies, dance, even their music is “appropriate” and are quick to condemn anyone who does not comply. They believe what they believe and everyone else be damned.

The Pilgrim: Those who understand that all are sinners saved by Grace. That all “worldly” things are bad for us, and even those that we can participate in should never be done in excess. We are pilgrims or sojourners and exiles (1 Peter 2:11) and as such our focus must always be on the eternal not the temporal. 

One last note you can not evangelize if you stay locked in your church, home etc. you have to go out into the world, that is the nature of the Great Commission.  Nowhere does God tell us to bring the world into the church, He calls us to go into the world. We must do so with caution and being well prepared. 

Devotional Thought for Today – 10-12-2020

8 My son, hear the instruction of thy father, and forsake not the law of thy mother:
9 For they shall be an ornament of grace unto thy head, and chains about thy neck. Proverbs 1:8-9

AMP and RVR 1960 


CHAINS

I remember back in the day when men thought it was cool to wear some of the gaudiest chains around their necks. I am not sure who started the craze but I am certainly glad it’s gone (or should be).

Here the bible makes clear what our true ornamentation should be the righteous teachings of our parents

I know some of you are going to say or throw the stats at me about the number of single family homes and parentless children. Then reader, you as aunt, uncle, brother sister, grandparent, etc. step up and impart the Law and Wisdom of God. If behoves you to give them the chains to wear. 

Daily Devotional – A Light

Logos.com

CSB and RVR 1960


CONTEXT:

Many today challenge the authorship of Isaiah son of Amoz as writer of the whole of this book. I would disagree citing two key factors, first his is the only name cited and second the consistent use of the phrasing  “the Holy One of Israel,”  throughout. 

The first 39 chapters are known as Book of Judgements as Isaiah lays out the judgement of God against the nations.  The remaining Chapters 40-66 are known as the Book of Comforts, here God lays out His plan for the hope and restoration of Israel and all the nations. 

In our Chapter 49, we have the beginning of the Servants call to Ministry.  As we see in v.5, God calls His servants from the womb, for a specific purpose (that Israel might be gathered to him). 


BREAKDOWN:

 And he said, – Reading other translations we see  this later in the verse, here in the KJV it is front and center, GOD is speaking, so pay attention. 

It is a light thing that thou shouldest be my servant – Okay (rhetorical) raise your hand how many think that their calling from God is a light (read simple, easy, undemanding ) thing.  Well God thinks so! 

to raise up the tribes of Jacob, and to restore the preserved of Israel: – God calls men for a specific purpose, if you think you want to serve God but say I do not know in what manner, PRAY, the Holy Spirit will show you the way.  Far to many head out to a “mission” field without God’s calling and fail, do not be counted among them. 

I will also give thee for a light to the Gentiles, – So if raising up the tribes of Jacob, and restoring the preserved of Israel was not enough of a challenge God tells Isaiah you will also be a light unto the Gentiles (those non-jews of his time and unsaved of the world today)

that thou mayest be my salvation unto the end of the earth. – We know that Salvation is in no one except Christ, so God is not telling Isaiah the he will be salvation, but that through his actions people will a light that draws folks to Christ Acts 13:47.


APPLICATION:

BALNAM Patch – Mission:M25

The patch above is worn by all of us associated with Mission M25 Ministries. It means Be a Light not a Mouth, and while of course God expects us to speak he does not expect us to ram stuff down folks throat. 

Here in Isaiah God calls Isaiah to be a light unto the unsaved; that is be an example they want to emulate, be there for them in there time of need, be that person they can count on. God DOES NOT call Isaiah, stand on the corner and preach condemnation and scorn. 

Do not get me wrong there is a time and place to point out error and biblical unrighteousness, yet even that must be done with the light of Christ and God’s Grace shining brightly.  


So today’s question is simple; are you a Light or just a Mouth? 

Daily Devotional – Seeking God

6 Seek ye the Lord while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near. Isaiah 55:6

AMP and RVR 1960


CONTEXT:

As a immature Christian I remember reading  Romans 3:10–12  where Paul is quoting Psalm 14:2-3; at about the same time our Pastor was going through a study on the Book of Isaiah. When he go to our text I was thinking the bible contradicts itself right? 

Of course not! CONTEXT, is everything and in both cases the Lord being near is key. In Psalm 14 and Romans 3, He is looking upon man that is casting His gaze and influence over. In our text He is near enough to be found. 

There is no contradiction when it is God offering His mercy and Grace freely. 


BREAKDOWN: 

Seek ye the Lord – Not for blessings and favors but for redemption and Salvation

while he may be found – When can God be found?  The Holy Spirit convicts man of sin John 16:8 and as Romans 1 says all mankind are without excuse. 

call ye upon him – That is to cast ourselves as lowly sinners wholly upon His mercy and Grace. 

while he is near –  God is a patient and loving God, but like all Fathers will only put up with so much, He extends His generous offer of Grace for only so long before allowing us to go our own way Romans 1:18-32. 


APPLICATION:

When God calls we need to be ready to listen. Paul in 2 Corinthians 6:2  again quoting Isaiah, this time 49:8 says, this reconciliation to God has an expiration date, its a limited time offer. There is a time that is “favorable or acceptable” and we need be ready to take advantage of God’s offer on that Day. 

Daily Devotional – Perspectives

Isaiah 26:10-11 – Linda's Bible Study

AMP and RVR 1960


CONTEXT:

The 26th Chapter of Isaiah is a Song of Praise. Many bible headings have different interpretations of what the “theme” or subject of the Song is, I tend to agree with some of the old scholars in that it is a Song dedicated to the well being and prosperity of the church along with the ruining of its enemies

The church, Israel, God’s chosen, are represented by a strong city v.1,  it is said to have strong (impenetrable) gates which are open to all who are righteous v.2. Here in they (we) can find perfect peace v.3, by trusting in the Lord v.4. 

If anyone thinks himself lofty and more sovereign than God, He will surely bring them down v.5-6 For the path of the chosen is one of righteousness and God judges those travels v.7.  In fact your people have waited and prayed for you oh Lord to make straight our path of righteousness that we may follow you v.8-9.  


BREAKDOWN: 

Let favour be shewed to the wicked, –  Various Bibles translate this differently and I think it changes the meaning (to those who do not thoroughly study) for example: 

AMP: Though the wicked is shown compassion and favor,

ESV: If favor is shown to the wicked

NKJV: Let grace be shown to the wicked

How often is the case that the wicked unrepentant we see in life seem to have it all while we struggle?  What do we do about it? Curse them, that is wish ill upon their favor or pray for their good fortune and repentance. I hope the later.  Isaiah would seem to have us ask for favor to be shown upon our enemies (context) how often do we ask for that? 

yet will he not learn righteousness: –  Isaiah points out that no matter how much of God’s Grace some folks get, their hearts are to harden to accept the free gift of God’s Love that goes along with it.  This does not mean we stop trying to share the Good News or pray for them. 

in the land of uprightness will he deal unjustly, –  These unrighteous men (and women) will continue to deal unrighteously for a time here on earth. Those who are openly rebellious against God’s word need our intervention (prayer) more than ever. 

and will not behold the majesty of the Lord. –  Do not get discouraged in our efforts some folks no matter how hard we try,  will continue to deny what is clearly before their eyes, the majesty of the Lord. 


APPLICATION:

Isiah is clearly writing about two different Perspectives on Life.

One from the standpoint of God’s chosen people, His elect born again  whom will spend eternity in Heaven. These see reason even during life’s troubling times to Praise Him and Glorify His name forever.

The other from those who are blinded by their own self (pride). They deny what is easy to see in front of them and make up every excuse to not seek the truth. 

The question(s) for today are what Perspective on Life do you have?  Do you see the MAJESTY of God before you today? 

Romans 1:18-20

Thanks to LP, Jr. for the idea behind today's devotional

Daily Devotional – Darkness Rather than Light

Edwards-Quote-Calvinism-You-Contribute-Nothing-To-Your-Salvation

INTRO:

As many of you know one of my life verses is John 3:19 And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.

I had finished reading a few weeks before Jonathan Edwards classic Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God.  It had shaken me to my core for I was just beginning to understand the true sovereignty of God.  My current studies had me in John Chapter 3 and at the about the same time I reached  v.16 a friend gave me a copy of John MacArthur’s book  Why One Way. These three writings forever changed my theology on man and God. I understood from from that time forward that the only thing natural man has to offer God is sin. 


20 For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved.
21 But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God. John 3:20-21

AMP and RVR 1960


CONTEXT:

It is hard not to include v.16-18 as the set the pretext for our main text today.  Of course everyone, even most unbelievers know about John 3:16, God’s Love for the world and the Apostle Jon insures we understand just how much God loved us in v.17 and the requirements if you will to receive the free gift of that love in v.18.  All is good here folks love to speak about this “Good News”, God’s Love, the Joyful Union of God’s children. 

Then we get to the ugly stuff. In v.19 John makes it plain that man’s  sinful ways condemn him before a Holy God; for God did indeed send His only begotten Son (light) to save mankind but mankind prefers darkness and evil. 


BREAKDOWN:

20 For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved. –  No One likes to be called out for their wrongdoings whether those were intentional or accidental mistakes.  How much more so those who deny the Christ, who purposely do evil always try and hide from others but there is no hiding from God.

21 But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God. – The exact opposite is true for those who practice righteousness. Their deeds are always open for public scrutiny because they are done for and with God’s help. 


APPLICATION: 

In my studies back in day, of these verses v19-21 I found that the  Greek word translated as “evil,” is phaula, which also means “worthless,” “base,” or “no good.”  Now I am not sure about you but the last thing I want to be called or even considered is a worthless no good person.  Yet that is exactly how God looks upon those who refuse His free gift of Grace, eternal Life through Christ Jesus. Their works, even if mankind looks upon them as ‘good” are worthless and no good in the kingdom of God. 

Unlike some who may not be converted, (saved) I was convinced I already was, this caused me as noted above, to reconsider my relationship with God. Was it all about me and satisfying my needs using God or as (I later learned) and the Westminster Shorter Catechism says :

Q. 1. What is the chief end of man?
A. Man’s chief end is to glorify God, and to enjoy him forever.

a. Ps. 86:9. All nations whom thou hast made shall come and worship before thee, O Lord; and shall glorify thy name. Isa. 60:21. Thy people also shall be all righteous: they shall inherit the land for ever, the branch of my planting, the work of my hands, that I may be glorified. Rom. 11:36. For of him, and through him, and to him, are all things: to whom be glory for ever. Amen. 1 Cor. 6:20. For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s. 1 Cor. 10:31. Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God. Rev. 4:11. Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.

b. Ps. 16:5–11. The LORD is the portion of mine inheritance and of my cup: thou maintainest my lot. The lines are fallen unto me in pleasant places; yea, I have a goodly heritage. I will bless the LORD, who hath given me counsel: my reins also instruct me in the night seasons. I have set the LORD always before me: because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved. Therefore my heart is glad, and my glory rejoiceth: my flesh also shall rest in hope. For thou wilt not leave my soul in hell; neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption. Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore. Ps. 144:15. Happy is that people, that is in such a case: yea, happy is that people, whose God is the LORD. Isa. 12:2. Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and not be afraid: for the LORD JEHOVAH is my strength and my song; he also is become my salvation. Luke 2:10. And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. Phil. 4:4. Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice. Rev. 21:3–4. And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God. And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.

putting God first and not me. 

For those who are not believers, who think “Christianity” is a hoax may I suggest reading any one (or more of the following books: The 10 Best Books for Skeptics of Christianity. I have read #1,4,6 and 8 but all of them lead the reader to draw the own conclusions. Numbers 4 and 6 especially; were written by two men who set out to disprove the bible and “Christianity” as  basically nothing more than a crutch. What they found was so much more.