Archive for June, 2007

“Knowing that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver or gold, . . .but with the precious blood of Christ. . .” (1 Peter 1:18,19)

COMMENT: Just recently the point was driven home to me that some people in the world have a much distorted concept of Christianity. The other day I was talking about the world situation with a cashier while paying for my groceries. He told me that things were going poorly in the world because “God is mad at us because we killed His Holy Son.” My mouth dropped open when I heard this foolishness. I immediately went to my car and brought him a Christian tract that fully explained God’s plan for salvation. Isaiah 53:10 declares: “Yet it pleased the Lord to bruise Him (Jesus); He has put Him to grief. When You make His soul an offering for sin…” So we know that God was not surprised or dismayed when Jesus was crucified on that Cross. It was foreordained before the foundation of the world. (1 Peter 1:20) My cashier friend would have been correct to say that the anger of God is “. . . against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men…” (Romans 1:18) God’s anger against the sinner is appeased by the death of Christ Jesus; theologically this is known as propitiation. Have you escaped the wreath of God? If not, go to Romans 10:9 & 10 and follow directions.

SCRIPTURE STUDY: Matthew 26:28, Romans 3:24-26 and 5:8-10

WISE SAYING: That’s why we bow down and worship the King; because He gave His everything.

‘However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth. . .” (John 16:13)

COMMENT: Two weeks ago, I went to the Laundromat and nothing outstanding happened at my “Maytag Ministry”. (That’s the name my friend JP Forest gave to the many spiritual happenings I’ve encountered there.) However, that afternoon something special did happen. I returned my rental truck and was given a ride home. The driver’s name was Joshua, so I asked him if he knew about the Book of Joshua. His eyes became as big as saucers as he told me that he had just begun to read it. Later on in our conversation, I asked if he had read “The Purpose Driven Life”? After he put his eyeballs back into his head, he told me that someone had recently given him that book and had urged him to read it. Now how many of you believe that these were just coincidences? No, I call them “God-incidents”. The Holy Spirit is the Great Coordinator! By the way, Josh is now subscribing to these daily messages. Have a blessed day Josh!

WISE SONG LYRICS: HOLY SPIRIT YOU ARE WELCOMED IN THIS PLACE. OMNIPOTENT FATHER OF MERCY AND GRACE, YOU ARE WELCOMED IN THIS PLACE.

“Now thanks be to God who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and through us spreads and makes evident the fragrance of the knowledge of God everywhere.” (2 Corinthians 2:14)

COMMENT: One Fall we once again had a “big stink” in Washington DC. No, I’m not talking about corrupt politicians, I am talking about The Titan Arum, more commonly known as the CORPSE FLOWER. This “flower” is a native to Sumatra and can grow to nearly 9 feet tall!! When it is in full bloom the foul odor is often compared to rotting fish, garbage and road kill. (I hope you’ve already had your breakfast!) Now I am not getting personal, but how do you smell?. . . .spiritually speaking, that is! One of the ways we Christians can spread the fragrance of Christ is through our behavior. Let me give you a “for instance”. While viewing National Football League games, I have always marveled at the way Tony Dungy, the head coach of the Indiana Colts, carries himself with calm dignity. I had suspicions that he might be a Christian. The other day when I was at my favorite Christian bookstore my hunch was confirmed. I saw his picture on the cover of Sports Spectrum, a Christian sports magazine. The article about him was titled “Quiet Fire”. In part, Dungy says: “God has expectations of you in this business. You’re a lamp and how you carry yourself is very important in the midst of the spiritual challenges.” What challenge? “Remaining humble when you do well, and keeping a decent attitude when you’re losing.” I’d say that this brother would be a great role model to emulate. What do you think?

NEWS BRIEF: Joe Gibbs, another Christian head coach, had something to say after his Washington Redskins clinched a playoff position with their 5th straight victory Sunday. “I feel humbled and really thankful the Lord’s blessed us with a great bunch of guys.” (Washington Times, Monday, January 2, 2006) And this is what Jansen, one of Gibb’s players, had to say about him: “He’s the same way after a four-game winning streak and a possible trip to the playoffs as he was after a three-game losing streak and being on the brink of elimination. And that’s what you need from a head coach.” (The Washington Times, Friday, Dec. 30, 2005)

SCRIPTURE STUDY: Matthew 5:13-16 and Col. 4:5,6

WISE SAYING: IN EVERYTHING YOU SAY AND DO, LET OTHERS SEE THE JESUS IN YOU.(gene mcguire)


FIRST THINGS FIRST

 

 

Steve Covey wrote a book with the above title. In this book he tells an interesting story about an incident that happened in a Time Management Seminar. The instructor displayed a glass jar and several fist-size rocks. He filled the jar with the rocks and then asked the audience if the jar were full. The unanimous answer was YES!!! The instructor then reached under the counter and pulled out a container of gravel which he promptly poured into the jar. The gravel fitted neatly in between the big rocks. He then asked the group, “is the jar full?” By now they were on to him and answered a resounding NO!!! The leader then produced a container filled with sand which had no problem joining the rocks and the gravel. Once again he asked the same question and the group responded NO. they were right because he immediately displayed a pitcher of water and filled the jar to the brim. You have probably guessed the reason for this demonstration; if you don’t put the big rocks in first, you won’t be able to get them in later. If you don’t get the big rocks in first and you fill your life with the sand and gravel of unimportant things, then there’s no room left for the big rocks. We’d be surprised as to how much of the other things we’d be able to fit in if we put the big rocks in first. When you put FIRST THINGS FIRST, God enables you to get all of the other somewhat urgent things done. I suspect that we can all agree that a couple of “big rocks” we Christians should put in first are prayer and bible reading.

USA Today Poll Results: Only 11%,” of Americans read the Bible every day. More than half read it less than once a month or never at all. 18% of born-again Christians read their Bibles once a day, while 23% who professed to be Christians said they never read their bibles at all. In which statistical grouping do you find yourself? Are you satisfied being there? If you’re not, today would be a great time to change your status.


“For you are great and work wonders! You alone are God.” (Psalm 86:10)

 

COMMENT: Recently I used this same Lead Scripture in another message. Well, I am using it again because what I am about to relate to you is indeed extraordinary.  Don’t you get excited when God uses you in a special and unexpected way? Sometimes we are totally unaware of how God will put us in the path of others so that they may be blessed. I have a hooded sweater that has the following emblazoned across the front: “JESUS IS MY BOSS  ‘My Lord and My God’, John 20:28”. The weather was right, so I decided to wear it. After several stops I went to the supermarket. When I had competed making my purchases, I returned to my car in the parking lot. Before I was able to pull away, I was stopped by a young lady. She told me that she had in her possession a sweater exactly like mine, but she didn’t know what had become of it. (At first, I thought that she was implying that I had her sweater!) She said that her presence at the supermarket at the same time I was there, wearing that sweater, was a sign from God. That sister in the Lord told me that she was on a lunch break from her job, but before going back to work she was going to sit in her car, read John 20:28 and meditate on it. Keep on praying for God to put people in your path to whom you can minister. You might be surprised as to how He brings it about.

 

SCRIPTURE STUDY: 1 Chronicles 16:12  &  Job 37:14

 

WISE SAYING: DO ALL THE GOOD YOU CAN, BY ALL MEANS, IN ALL PLACES, IN ALL WAYS, AT ALL TIMES, TO AS MANY AS POSSIBLE AND FOR AS LONG AS POSSIBLE. (John Wesley)

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“In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your path.”(Proverbs 3:6)

COMMENT: We often use the term “going together” when describing people who are “dating”. Recently it occurred to me that, in life, every human being has two individuals who want to “go with us”. Our two suitors are Jesus and the devil. When we arrive on planet earth, because of the sin nature we inherited, the devil has exclusive rights to us. He controls us whether we know it or not. In fact, the Scriptures declare that the devil is our father when we are in that condition.(John 8:44) In the meantime, Jesus attempts to bring us to Him by exposing us to the Gospel: “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” (John 3:16) When our eyes as finally opened to the Truth and we receive Jesus as Lord and Savior, we are delivered from that satanic bondage. For the first time we are now able to make a real choice to either “go with” Jesus or the devil. Unfortunately, some of us Christians choose to continue their old lifestyles instead of diligently using the Word of God to renew their minds, thus allowing the Lord to change them into the image of His beloved Son. At the same time, they are denying themselves the victorious, overcoming life that is every believer’s right.

SCRIPTURE STUDY: Ephesians 5:1-7, Romans 8:29

WISE SAYING: WE DON’T CHANGE GOD’S MESSAGE. HIS MESSAGE CHANGES US.

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“…not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and much the more as you see the Day approaching.” (Hebrews 10:25)

COMMENT: When the wind blows really hard, often the aftermath is many uprooted trees. However, some seem to be able to withstand the strongest onslaught. The secret of their success mainly relies upon roots that are deeply embedded in the soil. Surprisingly, there are some extremely tall trees whose roots are not commensurate to their huge size. I am talking about the world’s tallest living trees, the Redwoods that flourish in the western part of the United States. They grow to heights of 200 to 275 feet and have trunks of 8 to 12 feet in diameter. Even though their root system is not extensive, they can withstand the fiercest blast. The secret of their success is that they grow closely together. That’s a great picture of the success the Body of Christ can have when we have intimate and continual fellowship with one another. God has given all of us different gifts, talents and resources and they are to benefit our brothers and sisters in the Lord. My Pastor gave a great illustration of this phenomena. He compared  the Body of Christ to a jig saw puzzle. Each of us have a different shape. But when we come together, we “fit” together and make a complete and beautiful picture.

SCRIPTURE STUDY: I Corinthians 12:12-31 & Romans 12:5

WISE SAYING: FIND THE GOOD AND PRAISE IT!

 

WISE SONG LYRIC: THOUGH WE ARE MANY, WE ARE ONE BODY. WE ARE ONE BODY IN CHRIST.