Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Avoid The Way Of Evil

"Enter not into the path of the wicked, and go not in the way of evil men.  Avoid it, pass not by it, turn from it, and pass away."  Proverbs 4:14-15.  The Bible gives a constant warning against the influence of evil men.  Evil is cunning and very deceptive.  There appears to be no decrease in the way of evil.  Evil shall indeed wax worse and worse.  Therefore, let us heed the warning given.  We are not to get close to evil.  Its influence is far reaching.  To travel near unto evil presents the possibility of slipping into its snare.  The way of evil leads only unto destruction.  And so, we must be on guard lest we fall.  Behold, its appearance which oftentimes is very attractive.  But, alas, we must shun its very appearance lest we die.  Its trap is not always visible.  Therefore, we must look with a very cautious eye.  When we sense the way of evil, we must immediately turn from it.  Evil must never be courted in any way.  We are to stay clear, run if need be. Let us not enter into the way of evil for it will stain us and tear us apart.  On the other side of evil is the way of holiness.  This is the road that we must travel.  Its way is bright and clear.  The way of evil is the way of regret and guilt.  Shun it at all costs.  Be vigilant, be sober to avoid the adversary.

Monday, February 27, 2017

Put On Christ

"But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfill the lusts thereof."  Romans 13:14.  To have new life, one must put on Jesus Christ.  We put on Christ by being baptized into Christ.  Jesus must be put on as Lord.  When one is baptized into Christ, Jesus Christ becomes the Lord of one's life.  We surrender to Christ and willingly become the servant of Christ.  Jesus, as Lord, controls the life.  When Jesus is Lord of our life, we die to sin.  The flesh no longer controls our being.  The flesh ceases to have an appeal.  One who has Jesus as Lord might continue to struggle with the flesh, but the flesh is never able to gain entrance into our heart.  When we give way to the lusts of the flesh, we cease to be Godly.  The flesh wars against the things of God.  Jesus, as Lord, having been put on, helps us to overcome the flesh.  We are able to live as Jesus lived, and we are able to do those things that are pleasing unto God.  We must stay clean of those things that would have an appeal for the flesh.  We must not give the flesh an opportunity for us to sin against God.  The desire of one's life changes when Christ is put on.

Saturday, February 25, 2017

A Fountain Of Life

"The law of the wise is a fountain of life, to depart from the snares of death."  Proverbs 13:14.  Each person has a philosophy of how to live life.  We all have a law by which we live our days upon the earth.  Some are wise, and some are foolish.  Can you imagine a fountain that gives life?  Such is the way of God.  For one to live he must depart from death.  God offers life, and the devil offers death.  Notice the snares of death.  A snare is a trap.  The devil tries to trap us.  His word is not truthful.  Those who hear him are not wise.  His way is the way of death.  It is not easy to escape from a snare.  We must use caution that we do not fall into the way of the devil.  Wisdom hears God, and does as the Lord instructs.  To hear the instruction of God is to have life.  God wants us to live rather than die.  The fountain of life is a prohibitive fountain.  The fountain of life calls for a certain lifestyle.  The wise use this law to govern themselves.  The fountain of life is a constant source of peace and comfort.  Wise men drink so that they might live.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

For The Sake Of Truth

"For the truth's sake, which dwelleth in us, and shall be with us forever."  II John 2.  God only speaks the truth.  Never does He lie.  And, those chosen of Him went forth speaking the truth.  Dare we hear anything else but truth?  The truth makes us free from sin.  The truth opens our mind to the salvation of God.  Our faith is built upon the sure foundation of truth.  Truth brings us into the inner circle of Jesus Christ.  The truth dwells within us so that we are the companions of Jesus, and the sons of God.  We must open our heart to the word of truth.  Truth is that word which is spoken by the very mouth of God.  And it is given to us so that we might be sanctified in Him.  Truth lives, and never dies.  It will conquer all error.  It will unite the hearts of believers everywhere.  The truth is worth all cost.  The truth which dwells in us shall overcome all doubt and disbelief.  The truth will not change with the changing whims of men.  Culture does not alter truth.  God's truth is a bedrock foundation that cannot be overthrown.  The life which is established upon the truth of God will stand as a mighty fortress that cannot be moved.  For the sake of truth surrender your all.  For the sake of truth open your heart.  The truth is the one possession of life that will not fade away.

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

As A Thief

"For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night."  I Thessalonians 5:2.  The Lord is coming.  That we know for certain.  His coming again was announced when He returned to heaven.  The writers of scripture affirm that He will come.  When He will come is unknown.  Only the Father knows when the day of the Lord shall come.  It will be as the coming of a thief.  The thief does not announce his coming.  The thief is not predictable.  He seeks to catch one off guard and unprepared.  The day of the Lord will be such a time.  Many will be unprepared.  Many give little or no thought  to the coming of the Christ.  Perhaps He will come in the day or perhaps in the night.  It may be that we will be working or sleeping.  We may be sitting at dinner or playing in the yard.  The day of the Lord may not be in our lifetime.  But, one day the day of the Lord will come.  Jesus will come in all of the majesty of heaven.  The angels will surround Him as He descends from the Father's right hand.  Glorious and frightening will be the day of the Lord.  Many will shout and many will groan.  Some will be jubilant, and some will tremble.  How will the day of the Lord find us?

Monday, February 20, 2017

Believe And Overcome

"Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God?"  I John 5:5.  To overcome is to be victorious.  The world beckons us to follow.  The world tries to lure us away from God.  Her call is constant.  She will not cease to invite.  If we win the battle today, we must engage in the fight tomorrow.  The devil is the prince of this world.  Those who are engaged to the world are the enemies of God.  But, we can overcome because Jesus has overcome.  Jesus met the devil and conquered.  We must stand with Jesus.  His promise is more sure for finally the world will fall through the mighty power of God.  Belief builds a mighty fortress.  Belief will bring forth a triumph.  Believe in Jesus as the Son of God, and all shall overcome.  God, the Father, acknowledged Jesus to be the Son.  The heavenly host announced Him as the Son.  The prophets of old declared Him to be the Son.  His work among men proved Him to be the Son.  His followers confessed Him to be the Son.  He was clothed in flesh, but He was the Son.  He was slain on the cross, but He was the Son.  His mangled body was laid in the tomb, but He was the Son.  And, the empty grave announced forever that He is the Son of God.  This belief is our triumph over the world.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

If We Confess

"If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.  If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us."  I John 1:9-10.  Sin is a universal problem that afflicts everyone.  Sin opposes God and all that is good.  There has been since the beginning of time an ongoing war between God and sin.  Sin causes a separation between humanity and God.  But, God has provided a remedy for sin.  Sin violates the nature of God.  God is willing to forgive our sins if we are willing to admit that we have sinned.  To deny sin is to make God a liar for "all have sinned."  We must confess our sins.  We must place ourselves in the grace of God understanding that we need His forgiveness and cleansing.  Our confession allows God to be just in His cleansing of our sins.  God remains ever willing to cleanse the sin of those who come unto Him seeking His cleansing.  God's promise stands true.  Sin does not have to be our ruin.  The God against whom we sin is willing and able to forgive.  Let all be clean from the defiling stain of sin by coming unto Him who has all power to forgive.

Saturday, February 11, 2017

They Had Been With Jesus

"Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were unlearned and ignorant men, they marvelled; and they took knowledge of them, that they had been with Jesus."  Acts 4:13.  Those who have been with Jesus have boldness.  The presence of Jesus removes fear from our life.  He gives us an inner power that motivates us to go forth and do His will.  These enemies of Christ saw that these men had been with Jesus.  They were amazed at the willingness of the disciples to oppose them.  Jesus changes those who are with Him.  As His followers, we oppose evil and wrong doing.  The world must witness our relationship with Jesus.  They must know that we have been with Him. Our conduct will show our faith and commitment.  Faith comes from a personal relationship with Jesus.  Faith moves us to live faithfully to the cause of Jesus.  We are commissioned by Him to change the trends of society.  We are to move about in this world doing good.  The world will not appreciate the good that we do, but they must ever see that we have been with Jesus.

Friday, February 10, 2017

Enquired Of The Lord

"Therefore David enquired of the Lord, saying, Shall I go and smite these Philistines?  And the Lord said unto David, Go and smite the Philistines, and save Keilah."  I Samuel 23:2.  David's men expressed concern over going to Keilah.  So David enquired of the Lord again, and was given the same instruction.  The Lord will be with those who enquire of Him.  More people would be on safe ground spiritually if they enquired of the Lord.  Many people choose to serve God in their own way without making an enquiry of the Lord.  The Lord needs to be consulted as to how we are to serve Him.  The Lord has spoken through His word.  His instructions are exact.  His instructions do not change from time to time nor from culture to culture.  We know from Scripture that there have been those who offered sacrifice unto the Lord without enquiring of Him.  The consequences for such action was devastating.  God is never pleased with those who do not enquire of Him and seek His wisdom or will in any matter.  We must enquire of the Lord as to how we will obey His will and offer unto Him our worship.  In this way only will we be accepted of Him.

Thursday, February 9, 2017

I Will Teach Thee

"I will instruct thee and teach thee in the way which thou shalt go: I will guide thee with mine eye."  Psalm 32:8.  There is a way that God would have us to travel.  And, He has given us a compass.  We do not know the way that we should go.  We are not mindful of the pitfalls and the obstacles.  As a captain sails across the sea and uses his compass, so we must rely upon God for our direction.  We have received from Him a word of instruction.  Let us hear what He says.  Let us learn from His divine mind for He teaches us eternal truth.  God can see what lies ahead of us, and so we follow His guidance.  If we receive His instruction, we will learn from Him who knows all.  If we will allow Him to teach us, we will be wise unto salvation.  His teaching will guard us against sin and loss.  His teaching gives life and health for the soul.  His instruction unlocks all of the mysteries of life.  His instruction leads us in the way of holiness.  God teaches us so that we do not fail in life's grand purpose.  As God instructs us, we learn of Him and what He would have us to be and do.  

Delivered For Our Offenses

"But for us also, to whom it shall be imputed, if we believe on him that raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead: who was delivered for our offenses, and was raised again for our justification."  Romans 4:24-25.  The righteousness which Abraham acquired because of his faith in God was intended for us as well.  Through our faith, we can know the righteousness of God.  We must believe in God who raised Jesus from the dead.  Jesus died for our offenses that we committed against God.  God delivered Him as an offering for our sins.  The cross and the empty grave was the means by which God would justify us.  We must believe as did Abraham.  Abraham's faith prompted him to follow all the instructions which God gave unto him.  He embraced the promise that God made to him.  As a result, he achieved the righteousness of God.  The key to our justification is "if we believe."  Jesus died for our offenses and was raised for our justification.  God allowed Christ to be offered for our eternal well being.  Righteousness comes by faith.  We are an heir of the promise made to Abraham long ago through our faith in  Jesus Christ.

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

A Strong Tower

"The name of the Lord is a strong tower: the righteous runneth into it and is safe."  Proverbs 18:10.  A tower provides refuge and safety.   The towers of men can be overthrown.  The great wall that protected Jericho was thrown down.  But, the tower of the Lord stands firm against all assaults.  The Lord protects the righteous.  The righteous need a place of safety because of the worldly elements that seek their destruction.  The righteous live in a world of evil.  In the tower of the Lord, there is purity and cleanliness.  This world is a land of darkness and deceit.  In the tower of the Lord, the righteous find light and truth.  Many are the burdens of the righteous.  In the tower of the Lord, the righteous find comfort.  This world is a place of weariness.  In the tower of the Lord, the righteous find rest.  This world is a place of war and disturbance.  In the tower of the Lord, the righteous find peace.  This world is a land of want.  In the tower of the Lord, the righteous find contentment.  The tower of the Lord is a sufficient refuge for the righteous.  There is an answer for every problem.  There is a provision for every need. Oh, ye righteous, run into the tower of the Lord and be safe.

Friday, February 3, 2017

A Glorious Name

"If thou wilt not observe to do all the words of this law that are written in this book, that thou mayest fear this glorious and fearful name, THE LORD THY GOD;"  Deuteronomy 28:58.  His name is the most glorious of all names.  His name is to be feared above all names. He is THE LORD.  His name is glorious because He is the Creator of heaven and earth.  His name is glorious because He is the Redeemer of all humanity.  His name is glorious because He is the Eternal One.  Exalt and praise His name.  Fall upon thy knees and seek His favor.  Fear Him for He has the power to build and tear down.  His name is glorious because He is the Father of all who will know Him through Jesus the Christ.  His name is glorious because He will call us forth from the grave.  His name is glorious because He will bring us into the judgment hall.  Those who fear Him keep His law.  They write it upon their heart.  The fear of His glorious name gives birth to eternal joy and everlasting hope.  The name of THE LORD THY GOD guides the step and gives light to the path.  It is the name that was shouted forth in the dark void of nothingness and it is the name that will shatter the caverns of the dead.  THE LORD THY GOD will endure forevermore.

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

The Foolishness Of Preaching

"For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe."  I Corinthians 1:21.  The wisdom of the world will cause one to deny the existence of God.  However, God's wisdom is greater than the learning of the world.  The design of God is to save the world.  For that reason, God sent preachers to declare the love of God and the sacrifice of Jesus Christ.  The message of preaching is the gospel, which is the setting forth of the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.  To the world, this is foolishness.  The world sees no need for preaching because the world does not see God.  The world is not affected by sin, and therefore, sees no need for salvation.  Preaching is to bring salvation to those who believe.  To be saved, one must believe in the message of preaching.  Without a belief in the truth of preaching, one will not seek to be saved.  Preaching sets forth the law that God would have us to accept so that we will be saved from sin.  If we believe, we will be saved.  If we do not believe, we will not be saved.