Scripture for Saturday, February 11 (1/11)

The scripture for today, February 11, is Ecclesiastes 2:11 as found in the Old Testament of the Bible:

worship-the-first-century-way-cover-kindle“Yet when I surveyed all that my hands had done and what I had toiled to achieve, everything was meaningless, a chasing after the wind, nothing was gained under the sun.”

King Solomon wrote this. He tried everything to bring deep happiness and satisfaction. He tried writing proverbs and songs. He tried every pleasure there was. He tried working hard with his hands. He tried investing his money and becoming the richest man in the world. Nothing worked. He still couldn’t achieve the deep happiness he longed for.

There was a book published a few years ago entitled, How to Want What You Have. It seems that, for most of us, the deep contented happiness we all crave is always just around the corner. If we could just be selected for that promotion, if we could just get married, if we could just get a pay raise, if we could just be on the winning team, if we could just have children, if we could just get that house or car.

Always if. The problem is that, once we attain what we believe will bring us happiness, we just want the next promotion, the next pay raise, a different marriage partner, the next house, no children, the next car. What was Solomon’s conclusion? You’ll find it in the final few verses of Ecclesiastes:

True happiness comes from a love relationship with God.

#happiness, #pleasure, #stuff, #power, #wealth, #prestige, #fame, #riches, #marriage, #cars, #salary, Ecclesiastes, #Solomon, #wisdom

Scripture for Monday, December 12 (12/12)

The scripture for today, December 13, is Ecclesiastes 12:13 as found in the Old Testament of the Bible:

Life-Changing-Scriptures-Cover-medium“Now all has been heard; here is the conclusion of the matter: Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man.”

When the King James Version was published in the early 1600s, they italicized all words that were not in the original language of the Bible. The word “duty” above was not in the original. Translators inserted it to help us understand the original. But perhaps, in this case, it did not help. Fearing God is the whole of man ~ not our duty, but our essence.

Fearing the Lord is a gift. Isaiah 11:2 predicted regarding Jesus: “The Spirit of the Lord will rest on him ~ 

“…the Spirit of wisdom and of understanding,”

“…the Spirit of counsel and of power,”

“…the Spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the Lord.”

Solomon had tried everything to find happiness, as he explained in his book of Ecclesiastes ~ Pleasure (ch. 2), hard work (ch. 3), advancement (ch. 4), riches (ch. 5). None brought him true happiness.  Eventually, he concluded that only one thing can bring that happiness deep down inside where no one and no situation in life can touch it ~ God. God is the whole of man ~ if we let Him be.

Why? Ecclesiastes 3:11 explains it richly: “He has also set eternity in the hearts of men.” Another way to view this is “There is a God-shaped emptiness in the heart of man.” 

Fill your mind with the Word of God. Then God will fill your heart and being, and make you feel full.

#Wisdom, #Understanding, #Happiness, #Fulfillment, #HardWork, #Wealth, #Emptiness, #God, #Bible, #Stuff, #Prestige, #Fame

Scripture for Thursday, December 8 (12/8)

The scripture for today, December 8, is Ecclesiastes 12:8 as found in the Old Testament of the Bible:

REV-Cover-Kindle” ‘Meaningless! Meaningless!’ says the teacher. ‘Everything is meaningless!’ “

About thirty-five years ago some Christians in England did a sidewalk survey in the downtown of a major city. One of their inquiries was: “What question about your life do you ask the most?”. The answer almost always was, “Why am I here? What is life all about?”

The entire book of Ecclesiastes is about all the things that the richest and most powerful man in the world did in order to have an enjoyable and fulfilling life: He built mansions and grand temples, he cultivated great gardens, he brought in gold and precious stones and fabrics from around the globe, he had numerous wives and mistresses, he built the largest army and navy in the world, he studied every possible subject. At the end, he said it was all meaningless. 

The meaning of our life is that we were born to die. This life is temporary. This life is the foyer of the life we will have eternally ~ a life in heaven or hell. We were not put here just to have fun, but rather to take as many people with us to heaven as possible. 

How do we do that? By continually studying and following our manual the Bible that our Creator gave to guide us through this temporary life and into our eternal life ~ our final destination ~ and encouraging others to do the same. Then applying it to our everyday life. That is the meaning of life.

#Life, #Purpose, #Meaning, #Things, #Stuff, #Money, #Wealth, #WineWomenSong, #Hedoism, #Excess, #Born, #Heaven, #Hell

Scripture for Saturday, August 13 (8/13)

The scripture for today, August 13, is Isaiah 8:13f as found in the Old Testament of the Bible:

0-BOOK 3-HEARTS AFIRE-COVER“The Lord Almighty is the one you are to regard as holy, he is the one you are to fear, he is the one you are to dread, and he will be a sanctuary.”

“Holy” in both the Hebrew and Greek means someone or something set aside as very special. Who or what do we daily set aside as someone or something special? Do we in a sense “worship” that person or thing?

Whoever or whatever we worship, we become a slave to. Are we a “slave” to anything in our life? Is there something we cannot control because it controls us? Are we a slave to attention or food or money or power or clothes or houses or cars or etc?

Then, when there is a tragedy in your life, can you rely on those things to get you through? Who or what will be your sanctuary in times of trouble? Will you be able to say, “The Lord Almighty…he will be my sanctuary”?

DISCUSSION QUESTION: DID YOU EVER THINK YOU COULD RELY ON SOMETHING OR SOMEONE ALWAYS, BUT WHEN THINGS GOT HARD, THEY WERE UNRELIABLE?

#trouble, #problems, #refuge, #stuff, #God

Scripture for Tuesday, August 9 (8/9)

The scripture for today, August 9, is 2nd Corinthians 8:9 as found in the New Testament of the Bible:

0-BOOK 7-SHADOW OF DEATH-Cover“For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sakes, he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich.”

Such love! Jesus gave up streets of gold for streets full of trash. Gave up a heavenly mansion for a barn. Gave up the ability to be everywhere at once, to being confined to a body. Gave up eternal bliss for 33 years of struggle. Gave up adoring angels for crowds that hated him. And finally, he gave up sinlessness to take the blame for our sins and allow himself to take our punishment.

What have you given up for him lately?

DISCUSSION QUESTION: What kind of daily busy-ness can you give up long-term in order to do more for Christ?

#sacrifice