Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Why Did Jesus Become a Human?

by Greg Laurie

Hebrews 4:15 says, "For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need" (NKJV). Talk about having friends in high places. The Bible is saying that you are not serving agod who is disinterested in you. You are not serving a God who doesn't know what it is like to literally walk in your shoes. So you can go boldly to the throne of grace and find grace to help in time of need.

Jesus Christ, who was God in human form, never lived for a moment outside of the perfect will of God. He never gave in to a temptation. He never had an impure thought. He never did one wrong thing. He never displeased His Father in the smallest matter. He was flawless. He was sinless. He was perfect.

So why did Jesus come to earth as God in human form? Was it to give us the ultimate teachings ever? No. Though they were the greatest teachings ever given, He came here for more than that. Did Jesus come to set the perfect example of how a man or woman should live? He came to do that and much more. Did Jesus walk this earth merely to do miracles and heal people? While He always reached out to people in need, that was not His primary purpose.

C. S. Lewis said it well: "The Son of God became a man that men might become sons of God." God became a man so that you might become God's child. Now that is something worth celebrating.

Taken from "When God Became a Man" by Harvest Ministries

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Let Go and Take Hold

by Pastor Greg Laurie

I, the Lord your God, will hold your right hand, saying to you, “Fear not, I will help you.” - (Isaiah 41:13)

A man who fell over the side of a cliff was hanging on to a branch that was starting to give way. Recognizing it was only a matter of time before he would fall to his death, he shouted, “Is anybody up there? Somebody help me!”

Suddenly Jesus appeared, leaned over the edge, and said, “Young man, reach out and take my hand, and I will save you. But first, you must let go of that branch you’re holding on to.”

The man didn’t want to let go of the branch.

Jesus told him, “You must take hold of My hand and let go of the branch, or I can’t pull you up.”

The man paused for a minute and said, “Is anybody else up there?”

A lot of us don’t want to let go. We still want to hold on to a part of our old lives. But there has to be a moment in each of our lives when we have recognized we are sinners and have asked for God’s forgiveness. Then Jesus Christ comes in. But we have to let go. Then some changes must take place.

The Bible says there is a spiritual blindness in all those who have not yet turned their lives over to Jesus Christ. So we must have our spiritual eyes opened, turning from darkness to light and from the power of Satan to God (see Acts 26:18). As we yield to God and His will for our lives, then we will receive the forgiveness of sins. Then we will see the incredible benefits of making those changes.

But we have to let go of our branch and take hold of His hand.

Monday, September 28, 2015

He Has Promised to Give The Wisdom And Answers You Need

Jeremiah 33:3 “Call to me and I will answer you and will tell you great and hidden things that you have not known.”

Do you need wisdom, guidance, knowledge and direction? If you seek God’s face and you spend time in the Word ask Him and He promises He will show you things you could never know without Him!

God’s goal for you is not for you to wander aimlessly wondering, His goal is to fill you with His wisdom and knowledge for life so you can be successful in all He has called you to! When you get frustrated because you don’t have answers are you spending time reading your Bible and seeking God on every level available to you or are you expecting Him to “write it on the wall”? Remember the writing on the wall wasn’t a “good” thing, it was a curse!

Seeking God should not be some sort of overwhelming task, it should be a deep seated desire as a Christian to always be attempting to know Him better! We should love to learn new and amazing things about HIm on a regular basis, it should be exciting to have Him reveal a little more of Himself to us!

What do you need answers for today? Have you asked God for His wisdom and guidance? Sometimes the answer is right in front of us, we just need to ask to be able to see it. Don’t hesitate and certainly don’t put off asking God to show you all you need to know day by day and to reveal the hidden things you don’t understand or know yet. He is waiting. The best is yet to come but you have to ask for it!

Sunday, September 27, 2015


"...and many who heard him were amazed. ‘Where did this man get these things’ they asked. ‘What's this wisdom that has been given him, that he even does miracles! Isn't this the carpenter? ...’ And they took offense at him" (Mark 6:2-3 NIV).
There have been many views and opinions about Jesus Christ. To some, He was a great religious leader. Some view Him as a great teacher. To some people, He was one of the messengers that God sent to this world, especially to a specific people. Others look at Him as only a Savior. People like me believe in Him as the Savior and Lord of the whole earth. However, to His earthly townsmen, He was just a carpenter who they knew His background very well. However, He was, and still is, more than a carpenter. He is even more than what you can think of. The reason is that He is God, the Creator of the heavens and the earth. Many people will disagree with this, even today, because they, like those Jews, are spiritually blind.
What is your view about Jesus Christ? Who is He? Having heard what people said He was, He once asked His disciples this question: "Who do you say I am?" (Luke 9:20 NIV). Only Simon Peter could give an answer: "The Christ of God." That was Peter’s naïve answer. He was correct! What would be your answer to such question?
Jesus is not only the Savior of the world. He is also the Lord! This means that He owns the world and all that is in it - including you! The implication of this is that even if you do not want to have anything to do with Him, or you are taking offense at Him like those Jews, a day is coming when you will stand before Him at His throne where He will preside as the Judge. You will not have any other option than to give account of how you live your life on earth. The question then will be: "What will Jesus do with me?"
"Isn't this the carpenter?" Yes! Jesus Christ was that carpenter of Nazareth, but He is more than a carpenter. He is the Savoir and Lord of the whole universe. Have you accepted Him? The Bible says, "[Jesus Christ] came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God - children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband's will, but born of God" (John 1:11-13 NIV).
In His service,
Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).
Prayer Point: Pray for people that have not accepted Jesus Christ as their Saviour and Lord to do so before it is too late.

Saturday, September 26, 2015

A Gentle Spirit

Devotions taken from the messages of Adrian Rogers

BIBLE MEDITATION: “He that is faithful l in that which is least is faithful also in that which is much.” Luke 16:10


In order to be a missionary, a man had to appear before the superintendent of missions. His appointment was set for five in the morning. It was a snowy morning, but he was there. He waited until eight o'clock. Finally the superintendent came and asked him two simple questions. Then he said, “Thank you.

You're dismissed.” The aspiring missionary said, “Thank you for your time.” In his report, the superintendent wrote, “This man will make an excellent missionary.

He came at an early hour without a murmur; that shows self-sacrifice. He was there on time; that shows character. He waited without grumbling; that shows patience. He answered very simple questions in a straightforward manner; that shows humility.”

ACTION POINT: When God asks you to do something, it may not make sense or seem important, but let God determine what's important.

Friday, September 25, 2015

A Surprising Answer to Prayer

by Charles R. Swindoll

Psalm 91

Many years ago one of my mentors told me a story I have never forgotten. A missionary was home on furlough, traveling by car from church to church. Late one rainy evening, facing a long and lonely all-night journey, he asked the Lord to help him stay awake and make it safely to the next place he would minister.

A few minutes later he came upon a man off to the side, thumbing a ride. Although he rarely picked up hitchhikers, he felt sorry for the man out in the rain and offered him a lift. As the two of them began to visit, the missionary was thrilled to discover that the stranger was a believer and that they also had many mutual friends engaged in the Lord's work.

Time passed rapidly as the two of them laughed and shared stories. The fellowship was so rich that the missionary hated to see the early light of dawn and hear his new-found friend say, "Well, here's where I get off." Before saying good-bye, the missionary invited him to have a cup of coffee at a roadside cafe. As they parted, they promised to pray for each other.

The rain had stopped by now, and a bright sun-drenched sky warmed the missionary's soul. Then, a couple of minutes down the road, he realized that he had failed to get the man's address and phone number, so he quickly returned to the cafe. There was no sign of the man. When he asked the cook if he'd seen which way the other fella had gone, he was shocked to hear him respond, "What other fella? You came in here alone . . . I wondered why you ordered two cups of coffee."

The missionary glanced at the table where the two had sat and noticed that the other cup was still full to the brim . . . and the coffee was cold.

As he returned to his car, another surprising realization came to his mind. He remembered that when he had picked up the hitchhiker in the rain the night before, the man had gotten in the car but he wasn't wet!

Excerpted from Day by Day with Charles Swindoll,

Thursday, September 24, 2015

What We Must Do

Gideon ordered his men to do two things: Covering up a torch in an earthen pitcher, he had them, at an appointed signal, break the pitcher and let the light shine. Then he had them blow the trumpet, crying, "A sword for the LORD and for Gideon!"

This is precisely what all Christians must do. First, you must shine: Break the pitcher that conceals your light, throw aside the container that has been hiding your candle, and shine. Let your light shine before men; let your good works be such that when men look at you, they will know that you have been with Jesus.

Then there must be the sound, the blowing of the trumpet. There must be active exertions for the gathering of sinners by proclaiming Christ crucified. Take the Gospel to them. Carry it to their door; put it in their path; do not allow them to escape it; blow the trumpet right against their ears. Remember that the true battle-cry of the church is Gideon's watchword, "A sword for the LORD and for Gideon!" God must do it; it is His own work.

But we are not to be idle; He uses instruments--"A sword for the LORD and for Gideon!" If we only cry, "A sword for the LORD!" we will be guilty of idle presumption; and if we shout, "A sword for Gideon!" alone, we shall display an idolatrous reliance on man: We must blend the two in practical harmony: "A sword for the LORD and for Gideon!" We can do nothing in ourselves, but we can do everything by the help of our God; let us, therefore, in His name determine to go out personally and serve Him with our flaming torch of holy example and with our trumpet blasts of sincere declaration and testimony, and God will be with us, and the enemy will be put to confusion, and the Lord of hosts will reign forever and ever.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Taking Responsibility

Answers for Each Day

In the previous devotional, we saw how it is okay when we experience loss to weep and to grieve. I want to point you to verse 6 of that same passage to learn another important lesson related to experiencing loss.  1 Samuel 30:6 says, Now David was greatly distressed, for the people spoke of stoning him, because the soul of all the people was grieved, every man for his sons and his daughters. But David strengthened himself in the LORD his God.

David was greatly distressed because the people spoke of stoning him. David was not only grieving for the loss of his own family, but he was now being blamed for the whole thing. In fact, they were blaming him to the point that they wanted to take his life.

When you experience troubles, do not be someone who always wants to blame others. I know that it is human nature to want to point the finger and to lash out at somebody else when we are in trouble or when we have experienced loss.

In fact, I think blaming others is just part of our fallen fleshly DNA.  Just take a look at what Adam and Eve did in the garden when they messed up. When God turned up and asked what happened, Adam said, "Well, it's the woman that You gave me. She gave me from the tree, and I ate."

And when God asked Eve what happened, she replied, "Well, it was the serpent. It was the snake."

So Adam blamed his wife, and blamed God who gave him his wife, and Eve blamed the snake. Neither Adam nor Eve took personal responsibility. It was somebody else's fault.
If the problems you are experiencing today are your fault, take responsibility, and do not blame others.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015


In Rev 3:1 we read; and to the angel of the church in Sardis write; "He who has the seven Spirits of God, and the seven stars says this; `I know your deeds, that you have a name that you are alive, but you are dead".

The messenger in Sardis was one who had built up a tremendous reputation before others as a spiritual man. But the Lord's opinion of him was the exact opposite of that of his fellow-believers in Sardis. This shows how carnal and gullible most believers in Sardis were.

More than 90% of believers are unable to differentiate between a carnal preacher and a spiritual one. And more than 99% of believers are unable to distinguish between human-soul-power and Holy-Spirit-power. 

Most believers are impressed by the display and exercise of spiritual gifts and that is how they evaluate a preacher or an elder. And that is how they are deceived. God however looks at the heart. The messenger at Sardis may have had the gifts of the Spirit. But he was spiritually dead. 

This is a warning for all of us to take heed to: The opinion that 99% of our fellow-believers have about us can be 100% wrong! God's opinion about us could be the exact opposite of their opinion.

The same applies to a church. Others may consider a church to be "spiritually alive". But God may know it to be spiritually dead and vice-versa. Churches that God considers spiritually alive could be considered dead by undiscerning men. 

Most believers evaluate a church by the warmth of the welcome they receive when they come to the meetings, the size of the congregation, the amount of noise and emotion in the meetings, the musical quality of the singing, the intellectual content of the sermon and the amount of the offering!! But God isn't impressed by any of these things.
God evaluates a church by the Christ-like humility, purity and love and the freedom from self-centeredness that He finds in the hearts of its members. God's evaluation and man's evaluation of a church can therefore be at total variance with each other. In fact, they usually are.
He, who has ears to hear, let him hear.

Only one life, will soon be past,
Only what is done, for Christ will last.

The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all. Amen. (2 Corinthians 13:14)
Love & Prayers,                                         
Michael Jeremiah Knight

Monday, September 21, 2015

Strengthen Yourself

Answers for Each Day

For today's devotional, I would like you to read 1 Samuel 30:6 again as it contains another truth I want you to see,
Now David was greatly distressed, for the people spoke of stoning him, because the soul of all the people was grieved, every man for his sons and his daughters. But David strengthened himself in the LORD his God.
Notice that this verse begins by saying, David was greatly distressed, but it ends this way, but David strengthened himself in the Lord.

It is all right to weep, but when you are done, you need to strengthen yourself. It is all right to grieve, it is all right to express those emotions, but when you are done, you need to strengthen yourself in the Lord.

You need to connect with God in whatever way you find is best for you. If it is lifting your hands and worshiping Him, then that is what you should do.

If it is getting into His Word (which I would suggest for everyone) and spending time feeding your spirit, then do that. If it is reminding yourself about how God has helped you in the past, you need to do that.

Personally I believe that is what David was doing when the Bible says he "strengthened himself in the Lord." I think David was reminding himself about:
· How God delivered him from the lion and the bear;
· How God delivered Goliath into his hands; and
· How God delivered him when Saul tried to kill him.

I am confident David was thinking, "You know, God hasn't delivered me so miraculously in my past to get to this point and to let go of my hand and abandon me. I know He is going to help me now." 

David was strengthening himself in the Lord, and you need to learn to do the same thing.

Sunday, September 20, 2015


He spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint – Luke 18:1
Some of the parables of Jesus Christ are difficult to fully understand or perfectly apply. However the parable of "the unjust judge" is interpreted and applied for us, by the Holy Spirit himself. The point of the parable, Luke tells us in his divinely inspired narrative, is to teach us to never quit praying.

The parable involves a widow who has been wronged. Although the judge she appeals to is corrupt, uncaring, and godless, he eventually hears the widow's case—not because he changes his mind or character, but because she is so persistent with her request.

Jesus then instructs, "Hear what the unjust judge says" (18:6). If even a wicked, unfair judge would hear a case simply because of the perpetual applications of a citizen, then how much more will the loving God of heaven, who delights to care for the needs of His children, hear and answer prayers? He may delay, for His own good purposes, but He will certainly be sensitive to their cries.

There are many temptations to faint in our prayers to God — our own sense of unworthiness, no apparent or immediate answer, the temptation to take matters into our own hands. But Jesus says always, always pray. Do not faint. You are being heard by your just and caring and tender Father, even as you speak.

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Through Kindness and Love

Answers for Each Day

In Romans 12:20 we read a startling truth,
"If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him a drink; for in so doing you will heap coals of fire on his head."

Our natural inclination is to hate our enemies, isn't it? But the Bible gives us a very different perspective and direction. We are to care for and love our enemies. In fact, some of the greatest antagonists to the gospel have been won through love.

We once had a neighbor next to our church building who was very set against us and very vocal against the church. He would voice his opinion in meetings at the city hall and, on occasion, he would even accost people as they were walking to church. He would shout things at them and harass them a bit from his front yard.

Well, we had one of our pastors go out of his way to show this guy love. He would compliment this man on how well he took care of his lawn, and he began to build a relationship with him. Then one day he actually led the man to Christ!
That same man who would yell at the church members as they walked by his house came into our auditorium and repented before me with tears in his eyes and apologized. He said he had lashed out because he was afraid. But now he had come to Christ, and he had been saved.

It is a glorious thing. He was won to the Lord through kindness and through love.

Think about God. I am so glad that He did not judge us and let the hammer fall on us because of our sins. Instead He extended kindness and mercy to us.

Win your enemy to Christ by showing him kindness and loving him today!

Friday, September 18, 2015

The Results of Insecurity

by Dr. Charles Stanley
Psalms 143:8

We've already seen some of the areas where insecurity shows up. Now we need to turn our attention to its effects.

To start, insecure people have difficulty establishing good, lasting relationships. They simply cannot see how they could add value to anyone else's life. This is a tragic loss, because every single one of us needs deep and meaningful friendships to help us grow.

Also, men and women with insecurity are often seen as prideful or snobbish. Lack of confidence can cause them to withdraw from others, which can easily be mistaken for an act of arrogance. They can thereby give the impression that they simply don't want to be around others.

What's more, insecurity frequently leads to indecisiveness and fear. People can be so consumed with self-doubt that they can't make any decision at all. They wonder, What if I make a mistake? Well, so what if they do? Making mistakes is one of the best ways to learn how to do something correctly. Don't be afraid to try. Even if you don't succeed, you can at least rest in the fact that you did your best.

After a while, insecure people typically get angry. When they go so long feeling so poorly about themselves, they start to resent the success and happiness of others.

Can you see how something as subtle as a lack of confidence can have a debilitating effect on one's life? Don't allow such devastation to affect your relationships. Pray for the ability to recognize areas of self-doubt. And then start to take control today by asking the Lord to heal your insecurities.

Thursday, September 17, 2015

THE HIDDEN AGENDA – 2 Samuel 2:1-4; 5:1-3

  by Bonnie Ricks
    In the course of time, David inquired of the LORD. "Shall I go up to one of the towns of Judah ?" he asked.
    The LORD said, "Go up."
    David asked, "Where shall I go?"
    "To Hebron ," the LORD answered.
    So David went up there with his two wives, Ahinoam of Jezreel and Abigail, the widow of Nabal of Carmel .  David also took the men who were with him, each with his family, and they settled in Hebron and its towns.  Then the men of Judah came to Hebron and there they anointed David king over the house of Judah . 2 Samuel 2:1-4 NIV
    All the tribes of Israel came to David at Hebron and said, "We are your own flesh and blood.  In the past, while Saul was king over us, you were the one who led Israel on their military campaigns. And the LORD said to you, 'You will shepherd my people Israel , and you will become their ruler.' "
    When all the elders of Israel had come to King David at Hebron , the king made a compact with them at Hebron before the LORD, and they anointed David king over Israel . 2 Samuel 5:1-3 NIV
Without confirmation of any sort, David followed what He thought God wanted him to do, packed up his entire nation and moved to Hebron . The events that followed were filled with intrigue, deceit, murder, and other acts of violence.  To put it mildly, the circumstances were less than ideal.  But God accomplished His purpose anyway. 
In our lives, it is rare that we function in what could be considered ideal circumstances.  As a matter of fact, there are times that we wish we could just get through one day without a problem of some sort.  We complain and fret, wishing we had things better.  We notice other people whose lives seem to run smoothly, and we envy them.  We argue with God that He should bless us more.  All the while, He is blessing us.  But we are so busy worrying about the circumstances that we fail to see His work. 
Through our adversity, He strengthens us.  Through our trials, our faith grows.  Even in the midst of impossible circumstances, He is there.  In the midst of all the mayhem of our lives, we can trust God to continue to work to bring about His will.
“…for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure.”  Philippians 2:13 NIV

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Sefless Love

by shani4jc

I read a story a few days ago about a couple who adopted two special needs children. One of the children was a cocaine baby.  She had been left unable to hear, see, speak, or move.  She was adopted by the couple at seven weeks and the doctors said she would live a year at the most.  She lived six.  The couple was responsible for meeting her every need.  They had to feed her, bathe her, dress her, and turn her.  They did all of this knowing that she would never be able to do anything for them in return.  They poured love into her knowing that she would never be able to express her love for them.  They sang to her, talked to her, and asked her questions knowing that they would never hear her voice in return.  They did all of these things for the second child they adopted as well.  Two children with no ability to do anything for themselves...two children who could never hug them or kiss them or call out their name...tow children who were totally dependent on their parents for everything...two children who could never express their appreciation or their love for what their parents did for them...yet this couple did it hour after hour, day after day, month after month, year after year.  We look at this and wonder why they did it.  What could they possibly get out of this type of relationship?  It' s hard to fathom or begin to understand why they did what they did.  It's even harder to fathom or begin to understand why God did the exact same thing for us.  He, too, adopted children who would be absolutely dependent on Him every single day of their lives.  He adopted children who He would have to be totally responsible for and who would be unable to take care of themselves apart from His help.  He adopted children to whom He would pour His love out, knowing full well they would never be able to return that love.  He knew His children would never be able to express their gratitude for what He had done for them.  Knowing all of this, He looked at us through eyes of the purest love known, and He chose us to be His own.  We have nothing to offer Him except ourselves with all of our weaknesses, frailties, problems, and needs.  And He still chooses us day after day after day.  This is the truest love the world will ever know.

"God decided in advance to adopt us into His own family by bringing us to Himself through Jesus Christ.  This is what He wanted to do, and it gave Him great pleasure."  Ephesians 1:5

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Resist The Devil!!!

James 4:7 Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.
I have often heard, “What can I do to fight the devil?”, or, “ That devil just won't leave me alone!”, and, “How can I get rid of this evil spirit that follows me around”?
Our Bible verse today answer those questions in a two step phase. First we must “submit” then we must “resist”.
I believe the first step is harder than the second. People just don't want to submit to anyone. Folks tend to think they know what's best and go about trying to have their own way. Well, early on I found out I didn't know it all. On my job I realized others could do it better and faster. In my marriage I recognized my wife's gifts I didn't have. In ministry God let me know real quick I was not very smart concerning my Bible and spiritual matters. Yes!, Christian friends, we must “submit” ourselves to God in every way.
The second step is so simple we tend to overlook it during a crisis with the devil. Some people try to talk to and reason with the devil. Devil wins every time. Some shallow Christians try to ignore or pretend its not the devil that is bothering them. Devil wins again. Then there are a few folks who will turn to their Bible for help. They find Jesus rebuking the devil, turning his back to the devil, and, ordering the devils to be gone. Jesus resisted the devil!
When the devil comes at me with temptation, I remind him of how and where I got saved. I try to tell him of my salvation experience. Suddenly, I find my self talking to my self. The devil has left the scene!!
God Bless;
Walter D. Hill D. Min.

Monday, September 14, 2015

Love Your Enemies

by Skip Heitzig
Getting even feels good! That’s why people do it—vengeance temporarily gives them a sense of satisfaction, though it quickly dissipates into regret. Have you ever read one of those invoking psalms? You know, the ones where David called down God’s wrath on someone? “Break their teeth in their mouth, O God!” (Psalm 58:6). While it’s not my life verse, I confess I’ve invoked a curse upon” another on the road or over parking spaces from time to time.

But I’ve learned something else: As I truly pray for people, my heart begins to change. As I start asking God to bless them, my heart begins to soften and becomes more Christlike.One of the greatest virtues that separates Christianity from other belief systems is that we are taught not to avenge ourselves nor ignore our dissenters.
We are commanded to love our enemies.

This kind of response was virtually unheard of in antiquity. Human nature—then and now—is best summed up in the Old Testament law known as the lex talionis, which prescribed a restricted vengeance of an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth (see Exodus 21). Vengeance limited to fair restitution is one thing, but to bless instead?

Remember, there was a time when you were unlovely, when you rejected Him, when you failed to love others the way He does, and yet Jesus loved and died for you (see Romans 5:8).

While we will feel upset—in the car or the grocery line or in conversation—we can choose to show His compassion, His patience, His humility and tender-heartedness. In this way, we avoid the vanity of vengeance—by the sweetness, the kindness, the respect and wonder of His love. 

Dear Lord, I confess that I have often acted on my anger and tried to punish other people for hurting me. Please forgive me and help me to love my enemies, trusting that You are more than able to defend me. Please also use me to reach others, regardless of how they treat me, with the Gospel. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

God’s Vision in God’s Land

by Max Lucado

Joshua 21:45 says, “Not a word failed of any good thing which the Lord had spoken to the house of Israel. All came to pass.”  Joshua and his men went from dry land to the Promised Land, from manna to feasts, from arid deserts to fertile fields. They inherited their inheritance: the glory days of Israel. This is God’s vision for your life. You, at full throttle. You, as victor over the Jerichos and giants.
Paul describes it as a life in which “Christ’s love has the first and last word in everything we do” (2 Corinthians 5:14).  A life in which Paul says, “we do not lose heart” (2 Corinthians 4:16). A life defined by grace, refined by challenge, and aligned with a heavenly call. In God’s plan, in God’s land…God’s promises outweigh personal problems. Victory becomes a way of life! Your glory days await you!
From Glory Days

Saturday, September 12, 2015

Sand in the Snake Oil

For if we live, we live to the Lord; and if we die, we die to the Lord. Therefore, whether we live or die, we are the Lord’s. Romans 14:8 

Earlier this year you may have seen a Pew Research Center report that America is rapidly becoming less Christian and more atheistic. The number of adults claiming no religious affiliation increased to 56 million, an all-time high. Almost a third of those are self-described atheists.

Before you grow too discouraged over these trends, remember what the early church faced. The New Testament Christians were a small, despised minority, unpopular, opposed, and often persecuted. The government pressured them, and their culture looked down on them. They were reviled. But they were also resolved. These stalwarts held to their convictions and changed the world.

God’s people have always been yeast in the dough, salt in the wound, light in the darkness, and sand in the snake oil of secularism. There’s no silencing a Christian who, like Esther, is willing to speak the truth with the attitude, “If I perish, I perish” (Esther 4:16). The apostle Paul said, “For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain” (Philippians 1:21).
In Christ, we can uphold our convictions, whether in life or in death—whether anyone else does or not.

If I live, well, praise the Lord. If I die, well, praise the Lord. If I live or die, my only cry will be: Jesus in me, praise the Lord.
Ray Hildebrand

Editor's Note: Sorry about the past three days and no Devotionals... I got sidetracked with the October paper and my focus is now on printing two papers in October instead of one... Hope to get it all back together this weekend...

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Reasons to Surrender

by Charles Stanley

1 Corinthians 6:19-20

As we learned yesterday, God tells us to surrender our lives to Him. This is no small task. All our plans, every desire we feel, each entitlement that once seemed our right—everything is put aside in order to make way for our King’s will. But perhaps you have wondered why God can ask this of us.

The Lord has every right to demand that we give Him our all. First, Scripture teaches us that He is sovereign—the King and Ruler over the entire universe. As a result, we are under His authority, whether we choose to submit or not. Next, through His death and resurrection, Jesus saved us from our sin and its consequences. Therefore, we are indebted to Him more than we could ever repay. And finally, He sustains us; we should consider each breath and heartbeat a gift from Him.

Undoubtedly, God is entitled to ask that we yield our life to Him. At the same time, surrender is in our best interest. The Father promises that following Him leads to hope and an established future. Psalm 31:19 states, “How great is Your goodness, which You have stored up for those who fear You . . .” So, while He is the Almighty One with all authority to demand our life, He promises to care for us and to do what will benefit us most.

Are you willing to put yourself aside in order to follow Jesus? His way is best, and it offers hope, joy, and peace. We will not always like everything He chooses at the moment, but He promises to work all things for good. Will you trust God enough to hand the reins over to Him?

Monday, September 7, 2015

Repentance in the Believer’s Life

by Charles Stanley

Proverbs 28:13
Is repentance necessary in the believer’s life? Yes, and we can see this critical truth in 1 John 1:9: “If we confess our sins, [God] is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” You may say, “The word repentance isn’t in that verse.” But let’s take a closer look.

Remember, “to repent” simply means to change your mind. For unbelievers, this refers to saving faith—that is, the decision to place trust in Jesus. But for Christians, repentance involves a change of heart with regard to behavior or attitude. We must make an ongoing decision to lead an obedient, Christlike life.

In 1 John, this choice is represented by the word confess, which originally had the sense of “agree with.” In other words, if you confess your wrongdoing to God, you are coming into agreement with Him about that sin and, in turn, disagreeing with your previous view. Here, confession isn’t a matter of salvation; rather, it means allowing the Father to continually reform your mind, molding you more and more into the image of His Son.

God absolutely hates sin. So if you agree with Him about sin, then you are changing your mind about the disobedience in your life. Thoughts, attitudes, and actions that once seemed perfectly natural will no longer fit with who you are. As God continues to work in your life, your mind will gradually reject old thought patterns, and you’ll more closely represent His way of thinking.

Is there sin in your life that has become too uncomfortable to bear? Confess the matter to God, and allow Him to change your mind about it today.

Sunday, September 6, 2015

A Right View of Repentance

by Charles Stanley

Acts 2:37-39
Preaching the truth about Jesus Christ in Acts 2, Peter left thousands of listeners asking the same question: “What shall we do now?”

The apostle’s response is simple: “Repent, and . . . be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins” (Acts 2:38). As a result, 3,000 people were added to the new church that day (Acts 2:41).

Is this the message of most churches today? Does it seem strange that Peter said “repent” instead of “believe”? Actually, Scripture often uses these concepts interchangeably. You see, repentance and faith are really two sides of the same coin: Both are essential for salvation, and each is dependent upon the other.

In terms of salvation, you cannot separate faith and repentance—both happen simultaneously. In order to be saved, you must place faith in Christ for the forgiveness of sins, and that faith decision requires a change of mind (repentance) about your way of life. Yet many people mistakenly believe they must change their way of living long before they can make a faith decision for the Savior. The truth is, repentance does not mean that we must completely change our ways and “clean ourselves up” so we can receive Christ as Lord.

If you’re holding off on a decision for Christ until you think you are “ready” or “worthy,” you’re waiting in vain. Jesus is ready to receive you right now. Only as a child of God will you find the power—His power—to truly become the person you were created to be.

Saturday, September 5, 2015

Building Trust When Faith Wavers

by Charles Stanley

Mark 9:21-24

Since faith is the core of our Christian experience, the consequences of wavering faith are far-reaching. Vacillating trust can lead us to make wrong decisions. Sometimes, after praying for direction, we might receive an answer that leads us to think, I can’t do that. So, instead of asking God to strengthen our faith, we make excuses. We may choose to postpone our obedience—even indefinitely—in order to do something else we consider just as worthwhile. But partial obedience is still disobedience, and it leads to situations that can be dire.

When our faith falters, not only can it result in poor choices, but it also is costly. The Israelites wandered 40 years in the desert because the nation allowed unbelief to overtake their faith. Wavering trust can make us miss out on the blessings of God; it often proves detrimental to those we love as well.

Our confidence will also be affected by shifting faith. When we are spiritually unsteady, we can easily be shaken by little things—even insignificant matters. Instead of standing firm, we may find our confidence eroding. Then we become less willing to take the risks God is asking of us. Rather than acting with certainty, we question and doubt what we are hearing from the Lord. We may also find joy diminishing because our wavering faith has led us away from God’s will. The inner peace of God that we once enjoyed evaporates as our faith weakens.

No matter how unsteady our faith, God invites us to draw near so He can strengthen our trust in Him. When He does, accept His invitation and give Him the glory.

Friday, September 4, 2015

When Our Faith Wavers

by Charles Stanley

James 1:1-8
Faith is the heart of our Christian life. It is the means by which we are saved, receive forgiveness for our sins, enjoy a personal relationship with the Lord, and have the assurance of our salvation. By faith, we experience the peace of God and the power of the Holy Spirit in our lives. The Bible also tells us that praying in confident trust “avails much” (James 5:16 NKJV). Yet our lives and especially our prayers tend to be characterized by doubts and wavering faith.

Our faith wavers when . . .

We apply human thinking to our circumstances. Sometimes God is going to require us to do something with which human reasoning disagrees (Isa. 55:9). 

We allow our feelings to overcome our faith. It could be a sense of unworthiness or inadequacy that trips us up. Fear of criticism or failure might cause us to doubt we can do what the Lord asks.

We fail to see God at work in our circumstances. Doubts creep in when we have asked Him to take action but nothing appears to be happening.

We have guilt over sin, past or present. We cannot operate with strong faith when we are under conviction of sin or dwelling on guilt over past wrongdoing.

We listen to the enemy’s lies. Satan is the father of lies, and his objective is to have us reject God’s truth and believe his deception instead.

Faith is defined as “the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen” (Heb. 11:1). What is the condition of your faith? Do confidence and conviction describe you?

Thursday, September 3, 2015

We Are All Sinners

It is important that we place ourselves in the same category as those we are witnessing. 

The Bible tells us clearly in Romans 3:10, “As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one.” In Romans 3:23, the Bible says, “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.” Dr. Sumner Wemp used to say that, “We are all in the same boat. We’ve all done wrong.” 

When sharing the Gospel we do not want to be pointing our finger at those we are witnessing to, condemning them. It is important, however, that we make this point – that all of us are sinners. 

Your friend,
David Teis

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

God Is in Control

Proverbs 16:1, “The preparations of the heart in man, and the answer of the tongue, is from the LORD.”

Why do people worry? People worry and they freight because we forget the very simple truth that our God is in control of all things. We also forget that God cares about us and that His Word promises that He will work all things together for good.

It is very clear from this passage of Scripture that God knows what man is planning the preparations of the heart in man and the answer of his tongue. He not only knows what a man is planning to do, but He also knows what men are planning to say. We have no fears because God is in control. He even controls the wicked when it comes to their reaction to His righteous children.

Proverbs 16:2 tells us that man thinks he is clean. Man thinks that he is doing the right thing. “All the ways of a man are clean in his own eyes;”However the Bible says God weighs His Spirit. All we can do is look at our actions. The Bible tells us in 1 John 1:8 that even deceive ourselves into thinking we are righteous. That is why it is so important that we lay our actions against the Word of God.

The Bible tells that God knows our true heart. Our heart is deceitful above all things. God knows that man is spiritually dead. Ephesians 2:1 is very clear. God also knows the intent of man’s heart. If man is left to himself, he will come to no good.

The awesome thing is that God loves us. He loved us so much that He became a man in the person of Jesus Christ. He suffered, died, and paid the penalty of our sin. He was buried and then three days later rose from the dead and was seen by hundreds of people. If we receive Him, we become children of God. Then we can be used by Him to advance His kingdom. This is the only way we can do anything for Him.

Proverbs 16:3, tells us to commit our way unto the Lord. We will examine that verse next time.

Your friend,
David Teis

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

The power of your testimony of faith

As he was getting into the boat, the man who had been possessed with demons begged him that he might be with him. And he did not permit him but said to him, “Go home to your friends and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how he has had mercy on you.”  Mark 5:18-19

A defendant is sitting quietly in a courtroom as his life hangs in the balance. He knows he’s innocent, and only the testimony of the next witness can exonerate him. And if this witness testifies, he’ll no doubt be set free.

His lawyer stands up and tells the jury, “Ladies and gentlemen. I’m not going to call the next witness. Instead, I’m just going to tell you that what he has to say will prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that my client is innocent of all charges.” The attorney sits down and rests his case.

That makes no sense at all, does it? Why wouldn’t he call his most powerful witness to give his testimony? Why would he simply trust the jury to believe his statement? A testimony is crucial here. You can state the truth, but an actual testimony is so much more powerful.

When it comes to sharing their testimonies of faith, many Christians are sinfully silent. But a testimony is the most powerful evangelism tool you have. Share your story of faith with others and let them know how God has changed your life… and can change theirs too!


by Dr. Jack Graham, please visit