Thursday, October 27, 2016
"Forsake me not, O Lord: O my God, be not far from me. Make haste to help me, O Lord, my salvation." Psalm 38:21-22. The soul cries for help and security. A soul in need seeks God. Those who cry unto God know that God is their only help. All help is vain except the help of the Lord. We can know that God is our companion and friend. God will stay when all others will depart. God will help when others will not. God is near when others are not. God seeks and desires to be our stay in the storms of life. Allow God to be your God. Make Him your Lord. Open thy heart and He will be your salvation. Let us make our cry unto God. Let us seek His nearness and His salvation. God will lift us from the trouble that confronts us and make us to stand. Our faith must cry as our soul trembles. We need His light in our darkness. We need His nearness in our loneliness. We need His salvation in our despair. In all of our storms, let us cry for the help of our Lord and God. May we ever open our hearts to God, and know Him as our Lord and our salvation.
Friday, October 21, 2016
"Therefore, they say unto God, Depart from us; for we desire not the knowledge of thy ways." Job 21:14. God will depart from all of those who do not wish for His presence. God desires that all would know Him and love Him. Those who would serve God must know His will and give ear to His instruction. One must have a knowledge of His ways to serve Him faithfully and to do that which will please Him. However, those who live according to the flesh have no desire for God. Those of the world do not desire to know the ways of God. The ways of God stand opposed to the earthly. His way is a way of holiness and purity. His way is a way of right and goodness. Those who have no desire of God love impurity and filthiness. They do that which is wrong and evil. When one has a knowledge of the ways of God, he must depart from foolishness and iniquity. God's knowledge gives instruction about right living as opposed to wrong living. God's knowledge leads one to a higher plane of life. The knowledge of God teaches one to avoid iniquity and evil. If one has no will to do right, then he has no desire for God.
Thursday, October 20, 2016
"And he left off talking with him, and God went up from Abraham." Genesis 17:22. God has visited with Abraham on several occasions and told him about the promise. Abraham and Sarah are going to give birth to a son that will bless all nations. Abraham on this occasion tries to turn God in a different direction. God reminds Abraham again that the covenant will be established in Isaac, not Ishmael. God leaves Abraham. God has a will and a purpose. We have no authority to change that will and purpose. God oftentimes delays in His fulfillment of His promise. But, the will of God is steadfast. We are to hear God in all things. We are to debate God's will, but rather, we are to be submissive. God was not going to alter His will with Abraham. Neither will He alter His decree with us today. When God speaks, we are to hear and do what He says. God's way is always the best way. All other ways will come to nothing. God's will does not change over time. We are to wait for God to fulfill His promise. His promise is to keep us and sustain us. The word which God speaks is to be the direction of our heart. God has spoken unto us today. Let us hear and trust in Him who speaks unto us.
Wednesday, October 19, 2016
"Wherefore should the heathen say, Where is now their God?" Psalm 115:2. The god of the heathen is different than the God of the believer. The god of the heathen is an idol of things. This god has no substance nor ability. This god can do nothing except provide gratification for the moment. This god provides no answer for the deep questions of life nor does this god provide any help in the difficult times of life. The idol will not hear and will not answer. The idol can also be lost in the uncertainty of life. The God of the believer on the other hand provides assurance and help. God stands by those who stand by Him. God will never vanish from the human scene. He is able to hear and answer. The heathen wants a god that he can see and embrace physically. Our God blesses us and provides for us while the heathen must provide for his god. The god of the heathen can do nothing for him that the heathen cannot do for himself. This god is material and all material things soon vanish from sight. The God of the believer endures and provides endurance. The God of the believer sustains and enables the believer. The god of the heathen is upon the earth and the God of the believer is in heaven. Which is yours?
Tuesday, October 18, 2016
"The Lord is my strength and song, and is become my salvation." Psalm 118:14. The times are indeed troubling. Each person goes through their own trials and tribulations. We all experience our own sadness and sorrow. And, there are those times that we seek for answers. We feel lost and afraid. It is in these troubling times that we need God. Science does not answer the deep longings of the soul. Neither does education nor philosophy. Man has been made in the likeness of God, and therefore, has a need for God. The writer of this great passage confesses his dependence upon God. In weakness, we need strength. In loneliness, we need a song. In fear, we need salvation. God provides all of these: strength, song, and salvation. God enables. God cheers. God saves. Life discovers power, happiness, and deliverance in the God of heaven. Each one must come to find in God his own strength, song, and salvation. A relationship with God is a single relationship that is built by faith and trust. God can do for us what we need in all the different situations of our life. With full confidence, we can say, "The Lord is my strength, my song, and my salvation."
Friday, October 14, 2016
"O Israel, return unto the Lord thy God; for thou hast fallen by thine iniquity." Hosea 14:1. Iniquity is the culprit. Israel had fallen away from God because of a wrong choice. Iniquity is a separator. A gulf is built by iniquity. Iniquity opposes God. Iniquity builds a wall between the heart of man and the heart of God. Iniquity keeps God on the outside. Israel was with God, but had fallen from God. Falling away from God happens. Anytime. Anywhere. Anyone. Those who are with God must use caution. We must be alert. Iniquity does not rush in, but slips in. Iniquity wears a disguise. The true nature of iniquity is not revealed until it is too late. Iniquity is a lie. What iniquity promises, it cannot give. Iniquity tears down. It destroys. Iniquity changes the character. Iniquity defiles and pollutes. God is of no such character, and therefore, the fall occurs. When one falls, that one is lost. The fallen removes himself from the goodness and holiness of God. The fallen removes himself from the promises of God. But, God does not give up. God calls for the return of the fallen. God reaches out and offers a return. The fallen can get up from the mire of iniquity and come back to God. O return, return now.
"For I determined not to know anything among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified." I Corinthians 2:2. The preaching that all of humanity is to hear is the preaching of the cross. Jesus was crucified on a cross. Crucifixion was an ugly and painful way to die. Jesus hung on the cross for six hours. The mob had screamed for His crucifixion. What kind of heart wants an innocent individual to die such a death? Pilate, the Roman governor, consented. The governor knew that Jesus had committed no crime worthy of such a death. But, his popularity hung in the balance. Popularity or Jesus. Which do we choose? As He hung on the cross, the sky turned black at midday. The centurion confessed. One of the thieves confessed. The heart of the mob only turned blacker. That is the effect of the message of Jesus Christ and Him crucified. The message of truth heralds the Son of God dying on a cross. No other message can save the soul. The crucifixion of Jesus purchased eternal redemption for the world. Come to the cross and behold the Christ who died for you and me.
Wednesday, October 12, 2016
"Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up." James 4:10. We must accept that Jesus is Lord. A Lord rules. The subject submits. Jesus is to be our Lord and Master. We allow ourselves to be ruled by Him. We understand His power and authority over our hearts. We bow in His presence. We enthrone Him as the King of our lives. Humility destroys arrogance. Humility places self behind Jesus. Humility needs help. Humility knows insufficiency. Humility understands weakness. Jesus can help. Jesus has all sufficiency. Jesus has all power. Humility will clasp His hand. Humility will seek Him. The humble know Jesus. The humble can do nothing without Him. All things only become possible through Him. The humble are as beggars in the presence of God. Humility knows that we cannot, but Jesus can. Humble ourselves, and He will lift us. He will lift us in strength. He will lift us in confidence. He will lift us from doubt. He will lift us from weakness. He will lift us from sin. Will we not let God lift us? We will be lifted from the valley of despair and placed on the mountain of hope. Only when we humble ourselves will we see our spirits soar.
Tuesday, October 11, 2016
"And he sent them to Bethlehem, and said, Go and search diligently for the young child; and when ye have found him, bring me word that I might come and worship him also." Matthew 2:8. Herod wanted to find Jesus, but not for the purpose of worshiping Him. Many want to find Jesus, but not for the right purpose. Jesus is to be sought because we need a relationship with God, and that relationship can only come through Jesus. Jesus is to be sought because He is the redeemer, and in Him we have our sins forgiven. Jesus is to be sought for the peace and security that He offers. And, it is so true that Jesus can be found. We must search for Jesus through His word. We must search for Jesus with our heart. And, Jesus will be found in our obedience unto Him. We declare our desire to know Him in our confession of His deity. We turn unto Him as we turn away from sin. This change is known as repentance. We unite with Christ and put Him on in baptism. If we truly and diligently search for Jesus, we will find Him. And when we find Him, we must put away self. We must turn unto Him in trust. Our search for Jesus will not be lost if we truly desire to find Him.
Monday, October 10, 2016
"But they cried out, Away with him, away with him, crucify him. Pilate saith unto them, Shall I crucify your King? The chief priests answered, We have no king, but Caesar." John 19:15. A rejection of Jesus Christ always makes Caesar king. Their hearts could not be persuaded. Their hatred of Jesus turned their heart to stone. All that remained for them was Caesar. Jesus or the world. Which will it be? The question comes to every heart. A choice must be made. Caesar's kingdom is temporary. The kingdom of Jesus is eternal. The kingdom of Caesar is earthly. Christ's kingdom is heavenly. Caesar's kingdom is worldly. The kingdom of Christ is spiritual. Christ reigns as King eternal. The kingdom of Christ rules the heart. The kingdom of Caesar rules the flesh. The flesh dies and rots. The heart lives forevermore. The choice of the chief priests on that fateful day is the choice of today. Every heart must decide who is king for either Christ or Caesar rules every soul.