Archive for October, 2013
Jesus’ enemies thought to put an end to him by hanging him on a cross. Instead, they lifted him up so that the whole world would see him as Lord.
God looks down from heaven on the sons of men to see if there are any who understand, any who seek God. (Psalm 53:2)
God still watches for those who seek him. Maybe he will use you today to help them find him. Be ready.
“But the men who had gone up with him said, “We can’t attack those people; they are stronger than we are.”” (Numbers 13:31)
Moses sent spies into the Promised Land to see what it was like. He didn’t send them to evaluate whether or not they could take the land. God had already said that the Israelites would get land.
But these spies weren’t thinking about God. They were just thinking about themselves and their own strength. They became scared and wanted to turn back. Because of their lack of faith, God made the people wander in the wilderness for forty years.
There’s a saying: “Don’t tell God how big your problems are; tell your problems how big your God is!” Let’s not be like these spies. Let’s trust in God and his power.
Even their children remember their altars and Asherah poles beside the spreading trees and on the high hills. (Jeremiah 17:2)
Your children will remember who they are taught to worship. Who will your children remember based on what you teach them today?
I look at the photographs often, especially the faces. There is always joy and excitement as they have just been baptized. They exhibit the overflow of emotions as they tell everyone around them about what this moment means to them.
Remember when you were baptized? You made the confession that millions throughout the centuries have, “I believe that Jesus is the Son of God, and he died for my sins that I might live with him forever.” Then the water came rushing over your head and you plunged beneath the surface. Almost as quickly you were pulled to the surface. Remember? It might have taken place in a lake, a church baptistery, a stream, a stock tank, a river or a bathtub. Remember?
After you dried off and put on your clothes, you were greeted by people, some clapping, some crying, all smiling. Remember?
You wanted to tell people why you did it. Why you chose to follow Jesus, what he meant to you and how you wanted others to do the same thing. Remember?
Somewhere before the baptism, before the confession, before you decided – someone told about a Savior who could rescue you from sin, save you from Hell, helped you understand that God wanted you to be with Him forever. Remember?
Tell me what you felt when you committed your life to follow Jesus.
Where were you when you were baptized?
Why was it important for you to do that?
“So keep up your courage, men, for I have faith in God that it will happen just as he told me.” (Acts 27:25)
There’s a common saying, “Promises aren’t worth the paper they’re written on.” That may be true for some people, but it’s definitely not true for our God. When he says something will happen a certain way, it will happen.
You can count on his promises.
There is a time to keep your mouth shut. Do not fan the flames today. Be a fire fighter by your silence.
“She gave this name to the LORD who spoke to her: ‘You are the God who sees me,’ for she said, ‘I have now seen the One who sees me.’” (Genesis 16:13)
God sees everything we do.
How does that statement make you feel? Scared? Nervous? Happy? Or does it just seem preposterous that the Creator of everything would take the time to be aware of us?
Hagar was facing a terrible moment, but found comfort in the fact that God is the One who always sees us.
We should take comfort in that same thing. He sees. He cares. He responds.
The Lord said to Satan, “The Lord rebuke you, Satan! The Lord, who has chosen Jerusalem, rebuke you! Is not this man a burning stick snatched from the fire?”
Satan wants to condemn us and have us burn with him in hell forever. God has snatched us from the fire and will no longer allow Satan to condemn us. Praise God.
“Jesus answered, “I tell you the truth, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit.” (John 3:5)
It’s not your first birth that counts; it’s your second. Being born again, born of water and the Spirit. It’s the time when we bury our old self in the water of baptism, coming up to a new life through the Spirit of God. The apostle Paul calls it “the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit.”
Have you been born again? You have to put your faith in Christ, turn away from your old life, and be baptized for the forgiveness of your sins, receiving the gift of the Holy Spirit. That new birth readies you to enter the kingdom of God.
If you haven’t been born again in this way, let us know, and we’ll put you in touch with someone who can help you take that important first step.