Friday 5/18 ~ Can you give thanks when bad happens?

The scripture for today, May 18 (5/18), is 1st Thessalonians 5:18 as found in the New Testament of the Bible:

000-COVER-KINDLE-Thumbnail“Give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”

This is one of the most difficult verses in the Bible to follow. How can we rejoice with the loss of a loved one, of health, of a job, of a home, of a position? The Christians at Thessalonica, in Greece, had been suffering a lot of persecution for being Christians. Some had even been killed.

Satan will do all he can to cause bad to happen in your life in order to get you to blame God and forsake him. But the real blame belongs on Satan. It may sometimes seem like the harder you try to follow God, the worse things get in your life.

In that case, apparently, Satan is afraid of your strength in the Lord and is trying more than ever to weaken you and get you back on his side. He doesn’t have to attack people he already has. 

And sometimes God stands back and tells Satan, “Do your best. This person will grow stronger, not weaker. His/her health and job and home may become minuscule but their soul will become a giant.” Along with the Christians in Thessalonica, you can “become a model….your faith in God can become known everywhere” (1st Thessalonians 1:7-8).

So rejoice that Satan is so afraid of you. And at the same time, keep your eyes on Jesus who never gave in when Satan caused bad to happen to him. Rejoice that you are counted worthy. Can you do that?

~~~BUYLINK to ebook or discount paper:  http://bit.ly/LazarusSamaritan

Thursday 4/5 ~ It cannot control your heart, your spirit, your soul

The scripture for today, April 5 (4/5), is Micah 4:5 as found in the Old Testament of the Bible:

00-LUKE-KINDLE Cover-Thumbnail“All the nations may walk in the name of their gods; we will walk in the name of the Lord our God forever and ever.”

Nations rise and fall. Nations come and go. Nations are founded upon terror and aggression, or peace and democracy. Some nations follow religions which declare that peasants are peasants as punishment for previous lives, so must remain peasants. Some nations follow religions chosen by their national governments and which must be followed upon pain of death. Some nations deny religion completely and destroy anyone who believes anyway.

What kind of nation do you live in? As strong as your nation is, it cannot control your heart, your spirit, your soul. As strong as your nation seems to be, as much power as your government uses to control its citizens, it will not and cannot last forever.

Always remember, there is a forever nation ~ the nation of God, the kingdom of God. No matter what nation you live in, you can have “dual citizenship”. And by being a citizen of God’s forever kingdom, you will walk in it forever and ever and…

Wednesday 1/24 ~ Have you sacrificed anything for him lately?

The scripture for today, January 24, is Jude 1:24 as found in the New Testament of the Bible:

0-BK 6-PromiseKeeper-Cover-thumbnail-new-kindle“To him who is able to keep you from falling and to present you before his glorious presence without fault and with great joy ~ ”

God is perfect, and so cannot dwell with faults and imperfection. We have faults. Romans 3:23 says everyone sins. And Romans 6:23 says the wages of sin is death. But God always has wanted us to live with him. What a dilemma!

God solved our problem at great expense. He sent His Son, Jesus, to earth who lived the faultless life for us. Then God offered His perfect Son, His only Son, Jesus, to die in our place. Amazing.  But God wasn’t through yet.

After that, God told the world He would consider us “without fault” vicariously through Jesus. He has already collected the penalty for our sins ~ death. For our part, all we have to do is believe He did and follow everything He said and did to the best of our ability.

Jesus sacrificed everything for us. Have you sacrificed anything for Him lately?

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link to ebook & discount paperback:  http://bit.ly/TheyMetJesus

#sacrifice, #sin, #forgiveness, #death

Thursday 1/11 ~ Do you hear it?  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:

00-Stephen-Cover-Kindle-Thumbnail“And you will receive a rich welcome into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.”

How often do you forget that earth is not your home? As an old gospel song says, “We’re just traveling 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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link to ebook & discount paperback:  http://bit.ly/stephenmartyr

Scripture for Saturday, November 25 ~ Heaven

The scripture for today, November 25 (11/25), is John 11:25 as found in the New Testament of the Bible:

0-BOOK 7-SHADOW-ChildsCartoonMedium“Jesus said to her, ‘I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies.’ “

This has always been puzzling: People who have been Christians all their lives find out from their doctor that they are going to die, and they weep and beg God to keep them alive. Why? Heaven is our final destination, not earth. We claim we want to go to heaven, but we do not want to do what is necessary to get there. Death is the door to heaven. Death is not the end, but the beginning!

Let us be willing to look death in the eye and say, “Jesus has conquered you! I will close my eyes here and open them again to behold my Creator and my Savior!”

 

Scripture for Wednesday, October 4 (10/4)

The scripture for today, October 4 (10/4), is Romans 10:4 as found in the New Testament of the Bible:

0-BK 5-FloodGates-Cover-Medium-New“Christ is the end of the law so that there may be righteousness for everyone who believes.”

When Jesus replaced the old Law of Moses Testament, it came to an end (Hebrews 8:13; 9:1f; 9:15-18). Thank God. There were over 600 commandments in the Law of Moses, not just the “Ten Commandments.” They were tedious. Try reading Leviticus and see if you can keep every commandment in it.

Jesus was the only one who ever kept the Law perfectly (Hebrews 4:15). Once that occurred, he could be the Perfect Lamb of God without blemish, and he could be sacrificed on the altar of the world (the cross) in our place ~ take the punishment for our sins. He had said the Law of Moses would last until it was fulfilled.  On the cross, one of the last things he said was, “It is fulfilled.”

And with his death came the introduction of a New Law covered in the New Testament. Read the New Testament in its entirety. It is not tedious. It is beautiful. Let us not try to dip back into the Old Law and bring back showy worship practices done back them. He put it to death and gave us a new and wonderful and simple law of grace and love.

 

Scripture for Sunday, September 24 (9/24)

The scripture for today, September 24 9?24), is Luke 9:24 as found in the New Testament of the Bible:

worship-the-first-century-way-cover-kindle“For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me will save it.”

Romans 6 explains this phenomenon best. We are to put our old self to death ~ to crucify that part of us that sins and doesn’t care, that part of us that puts ourselves first (verse 7) ~ in imitation of Jesus dying. Once we decide to put that part of ourselves to death, we are buried, just like Jesus was buried (verse 3 & 4a).

And then, “just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life” (verse 4b). Why? “If we have been united with him like this in his death, we will certainly also be united with him in his resurrection” (verse 5). Having been “brought from death to life” (verse 13) through baptism, we have been born again!

Jesus’ physical death on a physical cross had a spiritual meaning of a spiritual death. We understand that. Our watery death has a spiritual meaning of a spiritual death also. There is another spiritual death called the second death in Revelation 21:8. If we go through the first spiritual death at baptism, we will not have to go through the second spiritual death in hell. We will have lost our life of sin and in the process saved our souls.

Only a spiritual mind understands this. And how amazing it is.