Archive for January, 2017
“Speak and act as those who are going to be judged by the law that gives freedom, because judgment without mercy will be shown to anyone who has not been merciful. Mercy triumphs over judgment!” (James 2:12–13)
Numerous times the New Testament warns us that we must show forgiveness to others in order to receive forgiveness from God. We must show mercy to receive mercy. It’s easy to judge; hard to show mercy. But mercy triumphs over judgment.
Be forgiving. Be merciful. And God will be the same way with you.
He picked up the cloak that had fallen from Elijah and went back and stood on the bank of the Jordan. (II Kings 2:13
When Elijah was taken into heaven, Elisha picked up his mantle and carried on. None of us is indispensable. God will raise up people to replace us. Be a mentor to someone today. Get them ready.
“Defend the cause of the weak and fatherless; maintain the rights of the poor and oppressed. Rescue the weak and needy; deliver them from the hand of the wicked.” (Psalms 82:3–4)
What does God expect from those that govern? That they make a nation powerful and prosperous? Not so much.
God wants leaders to defend the defenseless, to speak up for those who have little voice. Defend the week. Champion the poor. Provide justice for all.
That’s what God wants leaders to do.
And a voice came from heaven: “You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased.” (Mark 1:11)
This is God’s model for building self esteem: recognize the relationship, express love, tell them you are proud of them.
“Do any of the worthless idols of the nations bring rain? Do the skies themselves send down showers? No, it is you, O LORD our God. Therefore our hope is in you, for you are the one who does all this.” (Jeremiah 14:22)
There is but one true God. Our God sends rain on the just and unjust alike, giving life to plants and animals. We’re so accustomed to natural processes that we forget the Creator that controls them all. Give thanks to God for the way he sends us rain and everything we need.
But if the spot is unchanged and has not spread, it is only a scar from the boil, and the priest shall pronounce him clean. (Leviticus 13:23)
What a spiritual lesson to be learned. We all carry scars from our sins, but we are clean. Our high priest Jesus declares us clean.
“Whoever trusts in his riches will fall, but the righteous will thrive like a green leaf.” (Proverbs 11:28)
We plan for retirement, buy insurance, make investments. These things aren’t bad in and of themselves, but they can’t be where our security comes from. Our trust must be in God, not in the things we have accumulated.
At the same time he was hoping that Paul would offer him a bribe, so he sent for him frequently and talked with him. (Acts 24:26)
Sometimes people will study/converse with us about Jesus for the wrong reasons. We still talk to them. Who knows what may happen?
“May the nations be glad and sing for joy, for you rule the peoples justly and guide the nations of the earth.” (Psalm 67:4)
In the end, there is but one Judge. He will be just. He will guide the nations. He will make us all be glad and sing for joy.
Kings will come and go. God will be in control.
In the same way the chief priests, the teachers of the law and the elders mocked him. (Matthew 27:41)
It was the religious leaders who made fun of Jesus. There are people today claiming to be spiritual leaders who do not follow Jesus. Be careful. Real leaders follow Jesus, not make fun of him.