Devotional Thought for Today – 04/10/2021

6 For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly.
7 For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die.
8 But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:6-8

Romans 5:6-8

We can think and talk long and hard on Christ’s deed at Calvary. Yet we too must be willing to Crucify our sins to be truly a follower of Christs.


Grace Gems

Crucify your sins

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(William Dyer, “Christ’s Famous Titles”)

“Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.” Galatians 5:24

Crucify your sins
, which have crucified your Savior.

Did the rocks rent, when Christ died for our sins?
And shall not our hearts rent, who have lived in our sins?

Oh, that the nails which pierced His hands,
  should now pierce our hearts.

Oh, that they should wound themselves with their sorrows,
  who have wounded Christ with their sins.

Oh, that they who have grieved His heart,
  should be grieved in their hearts.

Oh, that I should be such a bad a child to Him,
  who has been such a good a Father to me.

My sins have been my greatest terror, and
  my Savior has been my choicest helper.

Oh, put sin to death, for sin was the cause of Christ’s death.

If someone killed your father—would you hug him and embrace him as your friend, and let him eat at your table? Would you not rather hate and detest the very sight of him!

If a snake should sting your dearly beloved spouse to death—would you preserve it alive, warm it at the fire, and hug it in your bosom? Would you not rather stab it with a thousand wounds!

And were not our sins the cause and instrument of Christ’s death? Were not they the whips that scourged Him; the nails, the cords, the spear, the thorns that wounded Him, and fetched the heart-blood from Him? And can we love our sins, which killed our Savior? Can a wife truly love her husband, and still embrace an adulterer?

We complain of the sins of Judas, and seem to hate them, and shudder at their mention. And can we love our Judas sins, which put Christ to death? And yet how many are there—who had rather have sinful-self satisfied, than to have sinful-self crucified.

Oh, sin is that mark at which all the arrows of Divine vengeance are shot!

Were it not for sin, death would never have had a beginning.
And were it not for death, sin would never have an ending.

Man began to be sorrowful, when he began to be sinful.
The wind of our lusts, blows out the candle of our lives.
If man had nothing to do with sin, death would have nothing to do with man.

Oh, did sinbring sorrow into the world?
Oh, then—let sorrow carry sin out of the world.

Of all evils, sin is the great evil. “The wages of sin is death.” Romans 6:23

Oh, sin is worse than punishment, banishment and imprisonment.

Sin kills both body and soul:
  it throws the body into cold earth rotting,
  and the soul into the hot Hell burning!


Sunday Sermon Series – Christ Invitation

Matthew 11:28 - Bible Quote - Bible Verse Images

Matthew 11

Chapter 11, can be broken down as follows: Christ’s preaching. (1) Christ’s answer to John’s disciples. (2-6) Christ’s testimony to John the Baptist. (7-15) The perverseness of the Jews. (16-24) The gospel revealed to the simple. The heavy-laden invited. (25-30) – Matthew Henry

As Matthew Henry points out our text v.28 is part of the invite to the heavily laden by Christ. There are three quick points I wish to make, that I gleaned from the text before we come on the sermon and other materials:

  • It is only through Christ Alone that the invite can go out
  • The invite is directed only towards those burdened by sins
  • Only Christ, by His atonement at Calvary, can provide rest from that burden

SERMON

Christ’s Invitation by J C Ryle

OTHER RESOURCES

Come – Matthew 11:28 by J C Ryle

Come Unto Me All Ye That Labor Thomas Boston

The Rest of Christ by A W Pink

The Yoke of Christ – Matthew 11:28 by A W Pink

The Present and Future Rest of True Believers – Matthew 11:28 by John Newton

Christ’s Gracious Invitation – Matthew 11:28 by Archibald Alexander

Come, All Who Are Weary Desiring God Ministries

Rest, Rest C.H. Spurgeon

A Knowledge of God By Dr. M. Lloyd-Jones

Devotional Thought for Today – 03/24/2021

23 For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. Romans 6:23

Romans 6

Just about a year ago, I used this same verse in a devotional entitled Wages of Sin. My focus then was God’s call to salvation. Today however as I read this verse, something completely different bothered me, the actual phrase the wages of sin is death. 

Everyone likes getting “paid” for their work.  Even volunteers get paid in the sense they see the results of their efforts. For those with a job that has a monetary wage, that paycheck is their reward, their payoff for hard work. That is their WAGE, their RECOMPENSE, or REWARD.

I think for the first time I put it all together that “we” work hard for our final payment of death.  In other words, the payoff for all our hard work of living a sinful life, our reward,  is eternal death. Culture tells us to just live life to the fullest and damn the consequences.  The Bible makes clear the consequences. In the end,  there is no one else to blame, no one to turn to except ourselves, we are without excuse.  Maybe it is just me but I can think of far better rewards, can’t you?

As I noted in last year’s devotional; Is the Holy Spirit tugging on your heartstrings? Answer God’s call Repent of your sins and make Christ not only the savior of your life but Lord of your life today. 

Today’s Prayer

Heavenly Father, I am a sinner and deserving of eternal death and the lake of fire, I am not worthy to set my foot in Your heavenly home, but I believe that the Lord Jesus paid the price for my sins through His death on Calvary and I heed Your call, Your free gift of salvation and eternal life IN HIM. I ask that Christ be Lord of my life, let the Holy Spirit guide my paths that I may do Your will.  In Jesus’ name, I pray, AMEN.

Modified from Source: https://prayer.knowing-jesus.com/Romans/6/23

 

Sunday Sermon Series – The Guilt and Danger of Such a Nation as This

You may have noticed recently I have been posting many devotional thoughts concerning the trends in America. Here is a sermon from John Newton best known for composing Amazing Grace he was with his friend William Cowper a prolific hymn writer and excellent preacher. 

While Jeremiah was obviously speaking prophetically to the nation of Israel in Chapter 5, every nation that turns its back on the one true God of the universe should be equally forewarned. 

Jeremiah 5:29 Shall I not visit for these things? said the LORD: shall not  my soul be avenged on such a nation as this?

SERMON

The Guilt and Danger of Such a Nation as This

BY JOHN NEWTON

 

THREE times* the Lord God repeats, by his prophet, this alarming question. Their ingratitude and obstinacy were so notorious, their sins so enormous and aggravated, the sentence denounced against them, however severe, was so undeniably just, that, partial as they were to themselves, God is pleased to appeal to their own consciences, and to make them judges in their own cause; inviting, or rather challenging, them, to offer any plea why his forbearance and patience, which they had so long despised, should be still afforded them…

CONTINUED > > 


Today’s Prayer 

Dear God,

We as a nation are in turmoil. We have partisan politics, ungodly laws, and tempers flaring over uncertain times. We ask you, Lord, to dwell among us, to not forsake you remnant, nor lift your hand of divine providence.  We confess our nation’s unworthiness of your mercy. 

We are comforted by the knowledge that You alone are our Savior and Lord, and the sovereign Master of life. We trust our nation to Your loving care, Lord. Send Your Spirit to touch the hearts of our nation’s leaders. Give them the wisdom to know what is right, and the courage to do it. Give us Your light and Your truth to guide us in our ways so that we may seek Your will in our lives and impact the world around us for Your Kingdom. In Jesus’ Name, we pray. Amen 

Modified from: prayer

Grace to You Blog Series – The Great Exchange

There is nothing more basic in Christianity than the understanding that Christ and Christ alone is the propitiation (substitute payment) for our sins.  In this series of six (6) short studies Grace to You Ministries studies that Great Exchange. 

Praying with Fervency

Today instead of my writing a devotional I thought I would share this one from the teaching of John MacArthurDrawing Near was published back in the 1990s and is definitely a great read. 

Praying with Fervency

“I gave my attention to the Lord God to seek Him by prayer and supplications, with fasting, sackcloth, and ashes” (Dan. 9:3).
The more you understand God’s holiness, the more you’ll recognize your own sinfulness.

People view prayer differently. For some it is a last resort after all human options have been exhausted: “All I can do now is pray for you!” Others liken it to a spiritual spare tire—something used only in the event of an emergency. Many who should thrive on prayer have been lulled into complacency by an affluent and godless society.

Daniel, however, saw prayer as an opportunity to express the passion and fervency of his heart to the God he loved and served. In Daniel 9:3 he says, “I gave my attention to the Lord God to seek Him.” That implies he set apart a specific time to devote to thoughtful, earnest, and fervent prayer. That is further supported by the way he prepared himself through fasting and donning sackcloth and ashes—symbols of humility and deep contrition over sin.

It might seem unusual for a man of Daniel’s spiritual stature to be overwhelmed by his sense of sin, but the closer one draws to God, the more aware he is of his sinfulness. We see that in Paul, who called himself the foremost of all sinners (1 Tim. 1:15). That might seem like a ridiculous statement to us but Paul saw sin for what it was. So did Daniel.

The title “Lord God” in verse 3 emphasizes God’s sovereign rule over all things. Daniel knew that God had permitted the Babylonian Captivity and that He alone could deliver His people from it. Consequently, Daniel gave the Lord his undivided attention as he prayed and sought mercy for himself and his people.

Daniel’s fervency is a rebuke to much of the flippancy we hear in prayer today. It was profound because it was generated by God’s Word and grounded in His will.

James 5:16 says, “The effectual, fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much” (KJV). Be like Daniel—a righteous person who prays fervently with great effect.

Suggestions for Prayer

      • Ask God to give you a greater sense of fervency in prayer.
      • Be sensitive to any sin that might be hindering your prayers.

For Further Study

Read Luke 11:5-13

      • What parable did Jesus tell to illustrate the benefits of humble, persistent prayer?
      • How did Jesus contrast earthly fathers with their heavenly Father?

 

From Drawing Near by John MacArthur Copyright © 1993. Used by permission of Crossway Books, a division of Good News Publishers, Wheaton, IL 60187, www.crossway.com.

 

 

 

One in Six Gen Z-ers “Identify” as LGBT

Let us be real this is SIN, that being said it is not smart or morally correct for “Christians” to take an in-your-face approach to condemn this sin. In the end, as the authors said: Reality eventually wins. This means that Christians have actual good news to offer a culture helplessly obsessed with but thoroughly confused about sex. Let us be there as Paul said in Ephesians: But speaking the truth in love [in all things—both our speech and our lives expressing His truth], let us grow up in all things into Him [following His example] who is the Head—Christ.

 

BreakPoint Daily

One in Six Gen Z-ers “Identify” as LGBT

sad-lonely-depressed-asian-woman-on-sofa-at-home-FBS6CNV

If the last two Presidential elections, the last midterm elections, and every exit poll ever conducted can teach us anything, it’s to not put too much faith in polling. Still, a new Gallup poll released last month deserves a serious look. In a remarkable jump from prior years, one in six adult members of Gen Z (that is, ages 18 to 24) self-identify as LGBT.

READ MORE > > 

 

Devotional Thought for Today – 03/05/2021

Logos.com

Ezra 9 

Chapter nine can be divided into two sections. In v.1-4  Ezra cries out for the sins of the Jews. In v.5-14 he confesses their sins against the most Holy God. This brings us to our text for today v.15, Ezra’s final plea is amazing in its simplicity and truth. It is also so appropriate for today.

I know some of you are thinking, how can the rebuilding of Jerusalem and the sinful remnant there applicable to those in the world (especially the U.S.) today.  What was Israel’s great sin?  It was their continual rebellion against God (to be expected in natural man)  and the failure of the chosen to act. 

Yesterday I had the privilege of praying outside a Waffle House in Peral, MS with my good friend Gary “Shepard” Burd.  We played God Bless America,  read 2 Chronicles 7:13-14, Prayed for America, and sang Amazing Grace there in the parking lot.

It was our way of acknowledging  (as Ezra) the sins of America, and as Ezra, our way of declaring the remnant is here Lord, we understand we are so unworthy because of the sins of our nation, but please hear our prayers.

We chose to act. How about you? 

TODAY’S PRAYER

Lord God, Sovereign ruler of all the heavens and earth, we declare that we have sinned so greatly against you that we are completely without excuse and undeserving of any mercy. Your remnant is here to serve you, Lord, to Act, on your behalf, send your Spirit to guide our path that we do what you have called us to do and may honor and glorify you in our duties. – Amen


 

Hawker’s Poor Man’s Commentary – Ezra 9:15

Devotional Thought for Today – 02/24/2021

Are You “Struggling” With Sin?

Hebrews 12

Having just finished reading Chapter 11, often called the heroes of the faith chapter, in its simplest terms, Hebrews 12 is a strong admonition to be consistent and persistent in our Faith, like one of those heroes. 

There are five (5) areas that we can break Chapter 12 into:

v.1-3 – Trust in God and His purpose 

v.5-13 – Accept discipline

v.14-17 – Those who reject discipline

v.18-29 – Superiority of the New Covenant 

Yes, I said five areas, and I purposely left out v.4, because it is our main text for today: Ye have not yet resisted unto blood, striving against sin.

At least monthly we post an article called News from the PERSECUTED CHURCHThis morning it reminded me that any complaints I could possibly have here in the US about “church restrictions” are a far cry less than those whose homes and lives are being actually threatened and destroyed around the world. 

That is what the writer of Hebrews point is, YES, Christian you will suffer for your Faith, if you do not you are a “Couch Potato Christian”, but that is another issue; yet have you suffered to the point of being asked to forfeit your life for Christ? 

The same applies to our struggles with Sin Some will try and claim 2 Corinthians 5:17out of context for sure, and saying that all true born-again believers never sin? Of course, that means that John had no reason to write 1 John 1:9 or that Paul was a liar or worse unconverted by Jesus himself when He says he still struggles with sin.

No the writer of Hebrews is asking a BIGGER question.  What have we done to change our habits, what have we forfeited? What are we willing to forfeit? 

TODAY’S PRAYER

Father God, I pray You will cleanse me so You can fill me to overflowing with more of Your Holy Spirit. I desire to be living out Your will. I also know that means You disciplining me. I will embrace Your discipline so I can grow from it. Help me to be an overcomer of all the sinfulness left in me. Help me to break the chains that bind me to my old ways. 

Lord, may more people embrace Your discipline so they can grow in a relationship with You.  Would You keep my focus on You so I can be a beacon of light throughout this day? Father, I pray You will prepare the hearts of whomever I may meet to be open to You. Thank You Jesus Amen.

Adapted From


The Struggle Against Sin

The Christian’s Struggle Against Sin (mp3 Download Set)

Your Fight Against Sin Is Normal

 

Devotional Thougt for Today – 02/23/2021

Divisive: used to describe something that causes great and sometimes unfriendly disagreement within a group of people:

22 Do they not err that devise evil? but mercy and truth shall be to them that devise good.  Proverbs 14:22

PROVERBS 14

When one reads Proverbs 14, we quickly realize it is a series of contrasts with an overarching theme of wisdom vs. foolishness.  There are many sub-topics or other contrasting points but the (in my opinion) all relate to being wise or foolish.

Our text for today must be taken in CONTEXT! Like most verses of Proverbs our text could stand on its own, but here, read along with v.21 and 23 we get a better picture of god’s revealed Word. 

‘He who despises his neighbor sins…But [blessed] is he who is gracious and merciful to the poor.’

Do they not go astray who devise {against their neighbors}evil and wander from the way of righteousness? But kindness and truth will be to those who devise good.

In all labor {divising good} there is profit, But mere talk leads only to poverty.

So God’s revealed Word is pretty clear.  The proverb makes a few key points: 

      • Dispising your neighbor even in your heart is a sin
      • Those that cheerfully help others are happy and blessed
      • Those that seek division, to disrupt the kingdom and the church labor in vain
      • Any deviation from God’s precepts is Sin and leads to evil
      • Not being divisive does not mean compromising the Word of God EVER
      • Those that seek to do righteous acts will profit
      • God expects His elect to be active in the World

TODAY’S PRAYER:

Father God, I know my nature is corrupt from the womb but by your Grace and the sacrifice of my Lord and Savior at Calvary I am a new creature. Yet as the apostle Paul said, still prone to do what I know is wrong. Help me Lord, to never be divisive,  to be gracious and merciful, to always use kindness and truth, and to labor faithfully and steadfast for your kingdom and glory. – Amen