Scripture for Friday, September 8 (9/8)

The scripture for today, September 8 (9/8), is Daniel 9:8 as found in the Old Testament of the Bible:

0-Mefiboset-KINDLE Medium“O Lord, we and our kings, our princes, and our fathers are covered with shame because we have sinned against you.”

Daniel is praying for his countrymen. Have you prayed for your countrymen and government lately?  I Timothy 2:1 & 2 says “I urge, then, first of all, that requests, prayers, intercession, and thanksgiving be made for everyone ~ for kings and all those in authority.” At the time Paul wrote this, Nero Caesar, who led the persecution of tens of thousands of Christians, torturing many to death, was the king over the Roman Empire. Paul prayed for him.

All your life, have you done nothing but complain about your government? Isn’t it time to stop complaining and start praying? It is hard to pray for someone and they stay your enemy.

Then, pray for your countrymen. Pray for forgiveness for what your country is doing wrong. Pray with thanksgiving for what your country is doing right. All countries—regardless of how great or small—have both. Humbly ask on behalf of your countrymen for forgiveness of whatever shames them, comfort for whatever losses they feel, and gratitude for everything that is right.  Be proud of whatever country you live in.  Do not leave. Stay and help it be even better. Be patriotic.

Scripture for Wednesday, May 24 (5/24)

The scripture for today, May 24 (5/24), is Amos 5:24 as found in the Old Testament of the Bible:

00-COVER-KINDLE“Let justice roll on like a river, righteousness like a never-failing stream.”

When individual citizens of a nation begin taking advantage of each other, the nation loses its standard of justice. Eventually, nations fall because of it ~ maybe not right away, but eventually.

Although citizens acting justly may decrease their income or status or power, that nation will roll on and on like a river.

Injustice is not impersonal. Injustice begins with you. One person at a time, then eventually an entire nation falls. On the other hand, justice also begins with you. One person at a time and the nation rolls on and on like a river.

What are you doing for your nation?

 

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#justice, #right, #lawful, #strength, #downfall, #nation, #government, #citizen, #injustice

Scripture for Tuesday, December 27 (12/27)

The scripture for today, December 27, is 1st Kings 12:27 as found in the Old Testament of the Bible:

PAUL COVER-KINDLE-“If these people go up to offer sacrifices at the temple of the Lord in Jerusalem, they will again give their allegiance to their lord, Rehoboam king of Judah.”

For centuries and millenniums, kings selected a patron god for their nation, a god they most revered to protect them. The patron god was selected by the king. Nations were always ruled by either a high priest or king. Some nations even had priest-kings.

So, when Constantine conquered much of Europe and set up his empire, he needed a patron god. One day during a battle, he looked up and saw a cloud formation that reminded him of things he’d heard about Jesus. So he made Jesus his patron God, and Christianity his empire’s required religion. He even rode his army through rivers, then declared them baptized. He ordered conquered peoples to be baptized or killed.  Headquarters was Rome.

Luther was friends of the Duke [king] of Germany, so when he broke off from Rome, the official state religion became Lutheranism. John Calvin was in the government of Switzerland, so when it broke off from Rome, the official state religion became Calvinism. When the king of England broke off from Rome, he became head of the Church of England (and Prince Charles is head of the Church there today). John Knox was influential with the parliament of Scotland, so his Presbyterianism became the official religion of Scotland.

In each instance, the king or parliament could force its citizens to follow the chosen religion of that nation. If people didn’t, they could legally put them in prison, torture them, and execute them at will. And sometimes they did just that.

Eventually, the idea of separating religion from the state government became popular. And that is where many nations are today. But it does not mean people in government cannot express religion. It just means they cannot force citizens to be a particular government-selected religion or be in danger of punishment. That is true “separation of church and state”.

#Government-Religion, #SeparationOfChurch&State, #Martyrs

Scripture for Friday, November 18 (11/18)

The scripture for today, November 18, is Deuteronomy 11:18f as found in the Old Testament of the Bible:

0-Joseph-Cover-Kindle-Medium“Then the Lord’s anger will burn against you, and he will shut the heavens so that it will not rain and the ground will yield no produce, and you will soon perish from the good land the Lord is giving you. Fix these words of mine in your hearts and minds; tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads.”

Sometimes the country we live in goes through very bad times. We pray for the bad times to end, but they do not. What is going on? The above warning was to the Israelites just before they entered their promised land. God had just said through Moses, don’t worship idols.

Perhaps our country is going through bad times because of idol worship. Probably not like the hand-made idols of ancient times, but idols of money and power and immorality. There have been times in the Bible when a good man prayed, “God, I am the only one left who worships you.” God would reply that there were a few others. But he did not reply that he was going to stop the punishing. The nation hadn’t turned back to God yet.

Therefore, when we are suffering unjustly for what a majority of our countrymen have been doing, we must do it bravely. And while we “wait it out”, let us continually remind ourselves, our families, our neighbors, our countrymen of the righteous ways they should be acting.

In bad times, this is our assignment. Let us be brave and spread the news. Let us keep reminding and be as patient with them as God is with us.

Perhaps some day they will listen.

#government, #nation, #punishment, #assignment, #problems, #troubles, #wars