Archive for January, 2008

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“For with God nothing will be impossible.” (Luke 1:37)

COMMENT: Well folks, Super Bowl Sunday is right around the corner. Some of you who are reading this comment were not even born when the first Super Bowl game was played in January 15, 1967 as an agreement between the NFL and its younger rival, the American Football League. Well, that’s enough of that “history lesson”; let’s get down to the nitty gritty. As you know, the New England Patriots will face the New York Giants this coming Sunday. I thought it very interesting how the Giants made it to The Big Show. Lawrence Tynes, the Giant field goal kicker, missed 2 of them in the final quarter. If he had made the last kick, the game would have been over but it went into overtime. On TV it was obvious that his coach was livid after the second miss. Green Bay won the toss and was on the offense. It looked like it was all over for the New Yorkers. But low and behold the Giants intercepted a pass from Bret Favre and after a few plays, Tynes had another opportunity to win the game. With faith in his ability and without the permission of the coach, he ran onto the field and kicked a booming 47 yard field goal that sent the Packers packing. (Sorry, for the pun, I just couldn’t resist!) In the Scriptures we find some similar situations. It looked like Joseph would spend the rest of his life in jail. It looked like the Egyptians would decimate the Israelites when they were trapped with the Red Sea in front of them and the enemy behind. It looked like the lions in the den would make a delicious meal out of Daniel. Right now, you may be facing a difficult situation and it may look like there is no hope. Take your eyes off of the situation and look to Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith.(Hebrews 12:2)

SCRIPTURE STUDY: Isaiah 54:14, 1 John 4:4 and Revelation 12:11

WISE SAYING: IF GOD BRINGS YOU TO IT, HE’LL BRING YOU THROUGH IT.

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“…I will multiply your descendants as the stars of the heaven and as the sand which is on the seashore…” (Genesis 22:17) “No longer shall your name be called Abram, but your name shall be Abraham [father of a multitude]” (Genesis 17:5)

COMMENT: God knew that Abram needed something to sustain his faith in His promise, so He did a couple of things. Every day when he saw the sand and every night when he saw the stars, Abraham was reminded about God’s pledge to him. Also, he heard the promise every time someone called his name or whenever he would introduce himself to someone saying: “Hello, I’m the father of a multitude”. (Looks like God had him calling things that are not as thought they were. [Romans 4:17] ) As time went on, that image became ingrained within him and finally came into fruition. If it was good enough for Abraham, it should be good enough for us!!! Keep God’s promises before your eyes day and night and keep on declaring them aloud. Be diligent and patiently endure.

SCRIPTURE STUDY: Proverbs 12:14 and 18:20,21, Isaiah 57:19

WISE SAYING: THE EVIDENCE OF MY BELIEF IS WHEN I SPEAK WHAT I BELIEVE.

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“. . .and the fire will test each one’s work, of what sort it is. If anyone’s work which he has built on it endures, he will receive a reward.” (1 Cor. 3:13b,14)

COMMENT: The other day I was listening to “Focus on the Family” and I learned something I never knew before. I had heard the name of William Wilberforce, but I was never acquainted with the marvelous work he had accomplished here on earth. That gentleman was a leader in the fight to abolish the slave trade and slavery in the British Empire. The bill to end slave trade became law in 1807. A movie called “Amazing Grace” details the amazing life of this wonderful man. When I heard that program, it brought home to me the fact that our accomplishments here on earth flee from the minds of people rapidly. However, if the things we Christians do during our assignment here on earth are motivated by love, we don’t have to worry, they will be remembered all eternity long and we will be rewarded richly by our Father in Heaven.

SCRIPTURE STUDY: Matthew 10:42 and 2 John 8

WISE SAYING: EVERY ACTION I TAKE IS A SEED AND I WILL CERTAINLY REAP WHAT I SOW.

POST SCRIPT: Last week we had about 2 inches of snow in Virginia. As I was shoveling my sidewalk, I decided to clear the sidewalk of my neighbor who had gone to work. Well, it was a very sunny day and by 2 p.m. the snow was melted away on all of the sidewalks. My first thought was: “My neighbor won’t know what I did for him!!!!” Then I snapped out of that “stinkin’ thinkin’ and said to myself: ” Gene, what was your motivation? Was it acclaim from your neighbor? It doesn’t matter if your neighbor never knows what you did for him. Don’t worry, God saw what you did and if you did it for the right motive, you pleased Him and you will be rewarded.”
Not a sermon, just a thought!

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Cartoonist’s Comment: A camel can endure the hardships of the desert because it has water stored in its hump. In the same way we can endure the hardships of life, if we take time to store God’s Word in our hearts.

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“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life.” (John 3:16)

COMMENT: Our Lead Scripture is probably the best know scripture among believers and non-believers alike. Presently we don’t see it too often, but years ago you couldn’t view a football game without someone in the crowd displaying a huge sign with JOHN 3:16 on it. But let’s take a closer look at what it means to BELIEVE IN JESUS. Once more I want to quote the Life Application Bible on this subject: “To “believe” is more than intellectual agreement that Jesus is God. It means to put our trust and confidence in Him that He alone can save us. It is to put Christ in charge of our present plans and eternal destiny. Believing is both trusting His words as reliable, and relying on Him for the power to change. If you have never trusted Christ, let this promise of everlasting life be yours –and believe.”

POST SCRIPT: There is always the possibility that there may be some individuals who are reading this message who don’t really know Jesus. Romans 10:9 tells us “If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.” You can do this right now. Simply tell God you are sorry for your sins, and thank Him for sending Jesus to be your Savior. Letting Jesus change your heart will change the fate of your soul, guaranteeing your place in Heaven. What is stopping you? There is hope in Jesus Christ today and always.

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THE BROOKLYN TABERNACLE CHOIR

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“. . .but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” (Phil. 3:13)

COMMENT: I know there is an old saying that one should not discuss religion and politics. Well, I think that is a stupid saying because both are a part of life. So here goes! Here in Virginia, a state delegate by the name of Frank Hargrove has caused a huge uproar because he is against passing legislation that would apologize to African Americans regarding Slavery. He said that Black People should “get over it”. Perhaps his opinion could have been expressed in a more muted tone, but as a Black man, I totally agree with Rep. Hargrove. Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation January 1, 1863. It is not likely that any former “masters” or “slaves” are still alive. So who will be the ones doing the apology and who would be the recipients of that mea culpa? I agree with Bill Cosby that African Americans should get over that “victim mentality” and move onto things that would improve the lot of that ethnic group.. For instance, right here in Washington D.C. they could work on upgrading some of the dilapidated school buildings and also concentrate on bringing quality education to the predominately Black neighborhoods. Unfortunately, many of us Christians are also living in the past, lamenting and “stoning themselves” for past iniquities. Others of us are still encumbered with unforgiveness. We are continually “rehearsing” in our minds the wrong done to us. That is exactly what the devil wants us to do because that kind of thinking incapacitates us; in that mental state, we are incapable of completely fulfilling God’s purpose for our lives.

SCRIPTURE STUDY:Isaiah 1:18, Matthew 18:21,22, 2 Cor. 5:17 and 1 John 1:9

WISE SAYING: TOMORROW NEVER COMES IF YOU ALWAYS LIVE IN YESTERDAY!