The “naked” conqueror

05-FLOOD GATES-Child'sCartoon-ThumbnailThe scripture for today, January 21 (1/21), is Job 1:21 as found in the Old Testament of the Bible:

“ ‘Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I will depart. The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; may the name of the Lord be praised.’ “

Wow!  Is he for real? Job had every reason to turn against God. In one day his entire wealth was stolen from him, nearly all his servants were killed by an invading army, and all his children died in a storm. Why hadn’t God protected him if he loved him so much?

Amidst tragedy, do you sometimes forget that Satan exists also? Job understood that whatever Satan does, God can undo.

Satan is the accuser (Revelation 12:10), but God is the forgiver. Satan can cause you to get sick, but God can heal. Satan can cause you to die, but God can bring you back to life. Satan can make you miserable in this world, but God can take you to a better world.

Shall you leave God to fight Satan alone? You were made in his image.  And how do you fight Satan? The same way Job did. Romans 12:21 says, “Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.”

Romans 8:28 says, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him.” There’s more….

In all these things we are more than conquerors

through him who loved us.
For I am convinced that neither death nor life,
Neither angels nor demons,
Neither the present nor the future,
Nor any powers,
Neither height nor depth,
Nor anything else in all creation
Will be able to separate us from the
Love of God
That is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

(Romans 8:37-39)


How can you be “more than a conqueror” unless you have something to conquer? How can you have “victory in Jesus” unless you have something to be victorious over?

You have periodic assignments from God. What bad thing has happened in your life lately? That is your assignment.

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Shhh. Listen. God is calling you.

The scripture for today, January 11 (1/11), is 2nd Peter 1:11 as found in the New Testament of the Bible:

“And you will receive a rich welcome into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.”

0-BK 8-ComeFlyWithMe-Cover-Thumbnail-NewHow often do you forget that earth is not your home? As an old gospel song says, “We’re just passing through.” Do you really believe that?

If someone told you tomorrow you were going to die, would you go into a panic? Would you beg God to let you live another ten or twenty years? Would you feel this was the beginning of the end?

To a true Christian, your dying is the end of the beginning. You have a whole “life” ahead of you in heaven. A never-ending life. Do you live like you believe it? Will you die looking forward to it?

Are you even a Christian yet? What is your life like? Do you even know what is in the Bible, God’s messages to you? Does the thought of heaven sound boring to you?  Do you even like God?

Stop and listen to the empty place in your heart (Ec. 3:11).  Do you hear it?  Shhh.  Listen…  God is calling you.

 

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Staggering beyond comprehension

0-BK 5-FloodGates-Cover-Medium-NewYou are the fountain of all things, the cause of all things, the manifestation, the life-giver and mover of all things. The thought of you is staggering and beyond my comprehension.  Still you reveal yourself and leave it up to me to understand what I can. That understanding is just a shadow, a whisper in this vast cosmos. Someday I will understand ~ well, maybe. Will it ever be possible? I am only human. Still, on that Someday, I will comprehend and praise you more than I ever imagined.

If I stayed to myself and minded my own business instead of encouraging others, I would not be opening myself up to insults. That’s just being a coward. Help me open myself up to taunts. Help me share in the suffering of Jesus.

Your Bible is such a blessing. It is not confusion. It is not chaos in its wondering about this and that. It is not madness in careless guessing. It is order and harmony, peace and tranquility, it is ultimate truth. There it is just waiting for me to discover it. You open your mind and heart to me in your Bible, along with your plans, your movings, your yearnings for me. A love letter from God it is. When I read, it is as though I am in a mist and seeing you afar. Thank you for your Bible.

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Go and conquer anyway

The scripture for today, January 9 (1/9), is Joshua 1:9 as found in the Old Testament of the Bible:

0-HS-592 VersesExamined-COVER-Thumbnail“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord, your God will be with you wherever you go.”

Fear can paralyze. Just ask Joshua. He had just been given the job of conquering horrible people who practiced prostitution as a religion, self-mutilation, and sacrificing their children to the fire god.  Plus, his spies said those bad people were like giants and his army was made up of the children of former slaves with no experience.

Guess what God said.  “Go anyway. Conquer anyway.”

What do you fear?  A few people fear spiders and night time and heights and such. A lot more of us fear changing a bad habit that has us in its claws and won’t let us go. Even more serious, do you fear telling a neighbor, someone in a club, a relative about Jesus’ willingness to save them from hell and get them ,entrance into heaven?  To all this, God says, “Go anyway.”

Some of you reading this live in countries where it is dangerous to be a Christian. Do you fear being arrested, tortured, killed for your faith?  God tells you, “Be strong!  Be courageous!  Do not be terrified!”  Why. Because “the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”

What keeps the fear under control?  “Perfect love casts out fear” (I John 4:18).  Love yourself, love your neighbor, love God.

Today, whatever it is holding you back, “Go anyway, Conquer anyway.”

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Wellspring of hope

The scripture for today, January 5 (1/5), is Colossians 1:5 as found in the New Testament of the Bible:

Inside-COVER-lg thumbnail“…the faith and love that spring from the hope that is stored up for you in heaven and that you have already heard about in the Word of Truth, the gospel.”

Does your faith have its ups and downs? Is it strong sometimes and weak sometimes? When things sometimes go so wrong you have trouble having faith in God, you can still hope. Do you grow angry at God sometimes?  You can still hope. During such low times when faith does not come easy, you can still hope. Hope is the springboard of faith.

And stay close to the Word of Truth, for John 14:17 says the Comforter is the Spirit of Truth, and John 17:17 says Truth is the Word of God. Read when you don’t feel like it. Ephesians is what I go to. David tells of his own faith problems in Psalm 42.

When your emotions are pulling you down and you feel only the darkness of confusion inside, rely for a little while on your logic, your intellect, until your emotions heal. Read things proving God exists. Read things about other people’s love for God Do not drop out of the church; you need your Christian friends. It may be hard for you to believe right now but someday you will heal.

So, keep on hoping ~ the springboard. Eventually, along the way, your hope will return to faith.

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