PRAY ALWAYS

1 Corinthians 16:13        King James Version (KJV)
Watch ye, stand fast in the faith, quit you like men, be strong.

Morning

“Shew me wherefore thou contendest with me.”
Job 10:2

Perhaps, O tried soul, the Lord is doing this to develop thy graces. There are some of thy graces which would never be discovered if it were not for thy trials. Dost thou not know that thy faith never looks so grand in summer weather as it does in winter? Love is too often like a glow-worm, showing but little light except it be in the midst of surrounding darkness. Hope itself is like a star–not to be seen in the sunshine of prosperity, and only to be discovered in the night of adversity. Afflictions are often the black foils in which God doth set the jewels of his children’s graces, to make them shine the better. It was but a little while ago that on thy knees thou wast saying, “Lord, I fear I have no faith: let me know that I have faith.” Was not this really, though perhaps unconsciously, praying for trials?–for how canst thou know that thou hast faith until thy faith is exercised? Depend upon it, God often sends us trials that our graces may be discovered, and that we may be certified of their existence. Besides, it is not merely discovery, real growth in grace is the result of sanctified trials. God often takes away our comforts and our privileges in order to make us better Christians. He trains his soldiers, not in tents of ease and luxury, but by turning them out and using them to forced marches and hard service. He makes them ford through streams, and swim through rivers, and climb mountains, and walk many a long mile with heavy knapsacks of sorrow on their backs. Well, Christian, may not this account for the troubles through which thou art passing? Is not the Lord bringing out your graces, and making them grow? Is not this the reason why he is contending with you?

“Trials make the promise sweet;

Trials give new life to prayer;

Trials bring me to his feet,

Lay me low, and keep me there.”

Evening

“Father, I have sinned.”
Luke 15:18

It is quite certain that those whom Christ has washed in his precious blood need not make a confession of sin, as culprits or criminals, before God the Judge, for Christ has forever taken away all their sins in a legal sense, so that they no longer stand where they can be condemned, but are once for all accepted in the Beloved; but having become children, and offending as children, ought they not every day to go before their heavenly Father and confess their sin, and acknowledge their iniquity in that character? Nature teaches that it is the duty of erring children to make a confession to their earthly father, and the grace of God in the heart teaches us that we, as Christians, owe the same duty to our heavenly Father. We daily offend, and ought not to rest without daily pardon. For, supposing that my trespasses against my Father are not at once taken to him to be washed away by the cleansing power of the Lord Jesus, what will be the consequence? If I have not sought forgiveness and been washed from these offences against my Father, I shall feel at a distance from him; I shall doubt his love to me; I shall tremble at him; I shall be afraid to pray to him: I shall grow like the prodigal, who, although still a child, was yet far off from his father. But if, with a child’s sorrow at offending so gracious and loving a Parent, I go to him and tell him all, and rest not till I realize that I am forgiven, then I shall feel a holy love to my Father, and shall go through my Christian career, not only as saved, but as one enjoying present peace in God through Jesus Christ my Lord. There is a wide distinction between confessing sin as a culprit, and confessing sin as a child. The Father’s bosom is the place for penitent confessions. We have been cleansed once for all, but our feet still need to be washed from the defilement of our daily walk as children of God.

Today’s reading taken from Charles Spurgeon’s “Morning and Evening.”

All right’s belong to Charles Spurgeon Collection(C)

Thank you Father God for this beautiful day.  Glory and Praise to You, Jesus and Your Holy Spirit.  Amen

JESUS WAS TEMPTED YET SINLESS

Hebrews4

No temptation is too great

Is it possible Jesus faced the same temptations you do?

This High Priest of ours understands our weaknesses, for he faced all of the temptations we do, yet he did not sin. So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it.

Hebrews 4:15-16 NLT

But remember that the temptations that come into your life are no different from others experience. And God is faithful. He will keep the temptation from becoming so strong that you can’t stand up against it. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you will not give in to it.

1 Corinthians 10:13 NLT
 

About this week’s promise

 

We experience temptation every day. Jesus himself was tempted in every way, yet his temptation did not lead to sin. It is not a sin to be tempted, but to prevent temptation from becoming sin, we must use all the resources God gives us to recognize, resist, and flee the situation. Since Jesus knows what it is like to be tempted, we can turn to him in all honesty when we’re having a battle with temptation. Have you talked with him lately about potential situations that would be difficult for you?

adapted from TouchPoint Bible with devotional commentary by Ron Beers and Gilbert Beers, Tyndale House Publishers (1996), p 1084

Digging Deeper

For more on this week’s promise, see Six Battles Every Man Must Win by Bill Perkins, Tyndale House Publishers (2003)

Bill Perkins offers hard-earned wisdom on how you can reset your sights and prevail in the challenges of life. With refreshing honesty, Bill chronicles his own struggles with disappointment, failure, and depression and tells how the little-known biblical story of David’s band of “mighty men” transformed his life.

 

 

Content is derived from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation and other publications of Tyndale Publishing House

 

LOVE IS THE GREATEST COMMANDMENT

Fulfilled In Your Presence

Fulfilled In Your Presence

LOVE IS THE GREATEST COMMANDMENT

John 15:12                King James Version (KJV)
This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you.

Morning

“Isaac dwelt by the well Lahai-roi.”
Genesis 25:11

Hagar had once found deliverance there and Ishmael had drank from the water so graciously revealed by the God who liveth and seeth the sons of men; but this was a merely casual visit, such as worldlings pay to the Lord in times of need, when it serves their turn. They cry to him in trouble, but forsake him in prosperity. Isaac dwelt there, and made the well of the living and all-seeing God his constant source of supply. The usual tenor of a man’s life, the dwelling of his soul, is the true test of his state. Perhaps the providential visitation experienced by Hagar struck Isaac’s mind, and led him to revere the place; its mystical name endeared it to him; his frequent musings by its brim at eventide made him familiar with the well; his meeting Rebecca there had made his spirit feel at home near the spot; but best of all, the fact that he there enjoyed fellowship with the living God, had made him select that hallowed ground for his dwelling. Let us learn to live in the presence of the living God; let us pray the Holy Spirit that this day, and every other day, we may feel, “Thou God seest me.” May the Lord Jehovah be as a well to us, delightful, comforting, unfailing, springing up unto eternal life. The bottle of the creature cracks and dries up, but the well of the Creator never fails; happy is he who dwells at the well, and so has abundant and constant supplies near at hand. The Lord has been a sure helper to others: his name is Shaddai, God All-sufficient; our hearts have often had most delightful intercourse with him; through him our soul has found her glorious Husband, the Lord Jesus; and in him this day we live, and move, and have our being; let us, then, dwell in closest fellowship with him. Glorious Lord, constrain us that we may never leave thee, but dwell by the well of the living God.

Evening

“Whereas the Lord was there.”
Ezekiel 35:10

Edom’s princes saw the whole country left desolate, and counted upon its easy conquest; but there was one great difficulty in their way–quite unknown to them–“The Lord was there;” and in his presence lay the special security of the chosen land. Whatever may be the machinations and devices of the enemies of God’s people, there is still the same effectual barrier to thwart their design. The saints are God’s heritage, and he is in the midst of them, and will protect his own. What comfort this assurance yields us in our troubles and spiritual conflicts! We are constantly opposed, and yet perpetually preserved! How often Satan shoots his arrows against our faith, but our faith defies the power of hell’s fiery darts; they are not only turned aside, but they are quenched upon its shield, for “the Lord is there.” Our good works are the subjects of Satan’s attacks. A saint never yet had a virtue or a grace which was not the target for hellish bullets: whether it was hope bright and sparkling, or love warm and fervent, or patience all-enduring, or zeal flaming like coals of fire, the old enemy of everything that is good has tried to destroy it. The only reason why anything virtuous or lovely survives in us is this, “the Lord is there.”

If the Lord be with us through life, we need not fear for our dying confidence; for when we come to die, we shall find that “the Lord is there;” where the billows are most tempestuous, and the water is most chill, we shall feel the bottom, and know that it is good: our feet shall stand upon the Rock of Ages when time is passing away. Beloved, from the first of a Christian’s life to the last, the only reason why he does not perish is because “the Lord is there.” When the God of everlasting love shall change and leave his elect to perish, then may the Church of God be destroyed; but not till then, because it is written, Jehovah Shammah, “The Lord is there.”

Lord, thank you for this beautiful day and your blessings! Thank you for always being there for your children; even when we are the one’s who are rebellious toward you and your Holy Word.  You never turn away your Prodigal Son or Daughter.  Thank you for your discipline.  Thou it may be unpleasant at the time of initiation; you bare us up and leave a way out back to you.  We come out refined by your hand, the potter and mold us into the image of your son, Jesus Christ! We praise you Father God for this and all the praise and glory you.  And let everyone say, AMEN!!!

God Bless

Our Lord Jesus Christ

Our Lord Jesus Christ (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

GOD IS IN CHARGE OF THE WORLD

Credit: www.turnbacktogod.com

God is in charge of the world

Do You Sense God Working in History Today?

O God, declare [my enemies] guilty. Let them be caught in their own traps.

Drive them away because of their many sins, for they rebel against you.

Psalm 5:10 NLT

A refuge to rejoice

Things didn’t look good for Martin Luther when he was summoned to Augsburg in late October 1518. He was being charged with heresy. Up to this point Frederick the Wise, elector of Saxony, had protected Luther from the church authorities, but now the prince was under pressure to withdraw his protection. It seemed only a matter of time before he would.

In Augsburg, Luther was asked, “If the elector of Saxony abandons you, where will you find shelter?”

The Reformer responded, “Under the shelter of heaven.”

In the last part of Psalm 5, we find that David, like Luther, trusted in the Lord to rescue him from his enemies. Did the psalmist escape from the trap? We don’t know, but the psalm closes with “joyful praises,” because David knew that he was now surrounded by God’s protection. Like Martin Luther, he found refuge under the shelter of heaven.

Under his wings, O what precious enjoyment!
There will I hide till life’s trials are o’er.
Sheltered, protected, no evil can harm me;
Resting in Jesus I’m safe evermore. 

WILLIAM O. CUSHING

adapted from The One Year® Book of Psalms by William J. Petersen and Randy Petersen,, Tyndale House Publishers (1999), entry for January 8


The difference between a politician and a statesman is: A politician thinks of the next election, and a statesman thinks of the next generation.
JAMES F. CLARKE

Content is derived from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation and other publications of Tyndale Publishing House

GOD’S WORD STANDS FOREVER/CHARLES SPURGEION

Isaiah 40:8
King James Version (KJV)
The grass withereth, the flower fadeth: but the word of our God shall stand for ever.

Morning

“And his allowance was a continual allowance given him of the king, a daily rate for every day, all the days of his life.”
2 Kings 25:30

Jehoiachin was not sent away from the king’s palace with a store to last him for months, but his provision was given him as a daily pension. Herein he well pictures the happy position of all the Lord’s people. A daily portion is all that a man really wants. We do not need tomorrow’s supplies; that day has not yet dawned, and its wants are as yet unborn. The thirst which we may suffer in the month of June does not need to be quenched in February, for we do not feel it yet; if we have enough for each day as the days arrive we shall never know want. Sufficient for the day is all that we can enjoy. We cannot eat or drink or wear more than the day’s supply of food and raiment; the surplus gives us the care of storing it, and the anxiety of watching against a thief. One staff aids a traveller, but a bundle of staves is a heavy burden. Enough is not only as good as a feast, but is all that the greatest glutton can truly enjoy. This is all that we should expect; a craving for more than this is ungrateful. When our Father does not give us more, we should be content with his daily allowance. Jehoiachin’s case is ours, we have a sure portion, a portion given us of the king, a gracious portion, and a perpetual portion. Here is surely ground for thankfulness.

Beloved Christian reader, in matters of grace you need a daily supply. You have no store of strength. Day by day must you seek help from above. It is a very sweet assurance that a daily portion is provided for you. In the word, through the ministry, by meditation, in prayer, and waiting upon God you shall receive renewed strength. In Jesus all needful things are laid up for you. Then enjoy your continual allowance. Never go hungry while the daily bread of grace is on the table of mercy.

Evening

“She was healed immediately.”
Luke 8:47

One of the most touching and teaching of the Saviour’s miracles is before us tonight. The woman was very ignorant. She imagined that virtue came out of Christ by a law of necessity, without his knowledge or direct will. Moreover, she was a stranger to the generosity of Jesus’ character, or she would not have gone behind to steal the cure which he was so ready to bestow. Misery should always place itself right in the face of mercy. Had she known the love of Jesus’ heart, she would have said, “I have but to put myself where he can see me–his omniscience will teach him my case, and his love at once will work my cure.” We admire her faith, but we marvel at her ignorance. After she had obtained the cure, she rejoiced with trembling: glad was she that the divine virtue had wrought a marvel in her; but she feared lest Christ should retract the blessing, and put a negative upon the grant of his grace: little did she comprehend the fulness of his love! We have not so clear a view of him as we could wish; we know not the heights and depths of his love; but we know of a surety that he is too good to withdraw from a trembling soul the gift which it has been able to obtain. But here is the marvel of it: little as was her knowledge, her faith, because it was real faith, saved her, and saved her at once. There was no tedious delay–faith’s miracle was instantaneous. If we have faith as a grain of mustard seed, salvation is our present and eternal possession. If in the list of the Lord’s children we are written as the feeblest of the family, yet, being heirs through faith, no power, human or devilish, can eject us from salvation. If we dare not lean our heads upon his bosom with John, yet if we can venture in the press behind him, and touch the hem of his garment, we are made whole. Courage, timid one! thy faith hath saved thee; go in peace. “Being justified by faith, we have peace with God.”

 

Credit: blingee.com

God is in charge of the world

Is it not reassuring to know that God is King of kings?

For the Lord is a great God, the great King above all gods.

Psalm 95:3 NLT

When the godly are in authority, the people rejoice. But when the wicked are in power, they groan. A just king gives stability to his nation…

Proverbs 29:2,4 NLT

 

Come, Thou Almighty King

 

Come, Thou Almighty King,
Help us Thy name to sing,
Help us to praise;
Father! all-glorious,
O’er all victorious,
Come, and reign over us,
Ancient of Days.
Come, Thou Almighty King (v1), AUTHOR UNKNOWN

Presidents, kings, and other ruling officials should be honored and prayed for. So wrote the apostles Peter and Paul, who lived under the Roman emperors. But we must never forget that the King of kings and Lord of lords deserves our ultimate honor and complete allegiance.

This hymn appeared anonymously in George Whitfield’s Hymn Book, published in 1757. It is usually attributed to Charles Wesley, but was probably published anonymously for a good reason. Scholars think Wesley wrote this hymn as an imitation of the English national anthem, “God Save Our Gracious King.” The national anthem had just been written, and it had become popular throughout England. This hymn may have been Wesley’s way of keeping priorities straight.

Whether the author was trying to remind us that there is an almighty Kind greater than any earthly ruler, or whether he was simply writing it as a special hymn for Trinity Sunday, it is a grand and noble hymn praising our sovereign Lord.

Adapted from The One Year® Book of Hymns by Mark Norton and Robert Brown, Tyndale House Publishers (1995), entry for February 24

Content is derived from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation and other publications of Tyndale Publishing House

God is in charge of the world

Is God really in charge today?

Lord, in the beginning you laid the foundations of the earth, and the heavens are the work of your hands. Even they will perish, but you remain forever. They will wear out like old clothing. You will roll them up like an old coat. They will fade away like old clothing. But you are always the same; you will never grow old.

Hebrews 1:10-12 NLT

Moses told the people, “Don’t be afraid. Just stand where you are and watch the Lord rescue you. The Egyptians that you see today will never be seen again. The Lord himself will fight for you. You won’t have to lift a finger in your defense!”

Exodus 14:13-14 NLT

About this week’s promise

Wars, starvation, disease, natural disasters — when we see all the pain in the world, it is easy to wonder if God is really in control. This passage assures us that however unpredictable, fearsome, and seemingly out of control the world is, Christ is Lord and King of all. Although we fully understand how he exercises his authority over daily events, we can trust fully that eternity is his and that we, adopted children of God, will exist in eternity long after the present trials are over.

Adapted from TouchPoint Bible with devotional commentary by Ron Beers and Gilbert Beers, Tyndale House Publishers (1996), p 1083

Digging Deeper

For more on this week’s promise, see examples in The One Year® Book of Christian History by E. Michael and Sharon Rusten, Tyndale House Publishers (2003) — one of our source books for God’s Daily Promises.

What happened on this date in church history? From ancient Rome to the twenty-first century, from peasants to presidents, from missionaries to martyrs, this book shows how God does extraordinary things through ordinary people every day of the year. Each story appears on the day and month that it occurred and includes questions for reflection and a related Scripture verse.

 

Content is derived from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation and other publications of Tyndale Publishing House

 

02-13-12 The Lord’s Word and Charles Spurgeon

Fulfilled In Your Presence

Fulfilled In Your Presence

 

Colossians 3:2     King James Version (KJV)
Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth

Morning

“Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not. Beloved, now are we the sons of God.”
1 John 3:1-2

“Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us.” Consider who we were, and what we feel ourselves to be even now when corruption is powerful in us, and you will wonder at our adoption. Yet we are called “the sons of God.” What a high relationship is that of a son, and what privileges it brings! What care and tenderness the son expects from his father, and what love the father feels towards the son! But all that, and more than that, we now have through Christ. As for the temporary drawback of suffering with the elder brother, this we accept as an honour: “Therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not.” We are content to be unknown with him in his humiliation, for we are to be exalted with him. “Beloved, now are we the sons of God.” That is easy to read, but it is not so easy to feel. How is it with your heart this morning? Are you in the lowest depths of sorrow? Does corruption rise within your spirit, and grace seem like a poor spark trampled under foot? Does your faith almost fail you? Fear not, it is neither your graces nor feelings on which you are to live: you must live simply by faith on Christ. With all these things against us, now–in the very depths of our sorrow, wherever we may be–now, as much in the valley as on the mountain, “Beloved, now are we the sons of God.” “Ah, but,” you say, “see how I am arrayed! my graces are not bright; my righteousness does not shine with apparent glory.” But read the next: “It doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him.” The Holy Spirit shall purify our minds, and divine power shall refine our bodies; then shall we see him as he is.

Evening

“There is therefore now no condemnation.”
Romans 8:1

Come, my soul, think thou of this. Believing in Jesus, thou art actually and effectually cleared from guilt; thou art led out of thy prison. Thou art no more in fetters as a bond-slave; thou art delivered now from the bondage of the law; thou art freed from sin, and canst walk at large as a freeman; thy Saviour’s blood has procured thy full discharge. Thou hast a right now to approach thy Father’s throne. No flames of vengeance are there to scare thee now; no fiery sword; justice cannot smite the innocent. Thy disabilities are taken away: thou wast once unable to see thy Father’s face: thou canst see it now. Thou couldst not speak with him: but now thou hast access with boldness. Once there was a fear of hell upon thee; but thou hast no fear of it now, for how can there be punishment for the guiltless? He who believeth is not condemned, and cannot be punished. And more than all, the privileges thou mightst have enjoyed, if thou hadst never sinned, are thine now that thou art justified. All the blessings which thou wouldst have had if thou hadst kept the law, and more, are thine, because Christ has kept it for thee. All the love and the acceptance which perfect obedience could have obtained of God, belong to thee, because Christ was perfectly obedient on thy behalf, and hath imputed all his merits to thy account, that thou mightst be exceeding rich through him, who for thy sake became exceeding poor. Oh! how great the debt of love and gratitude thou owest to thy Saviour!

“A debtor to mercy alone,

Of covenant mercy I sing;

Nor fear with thy righteousness on,

My person and offerings to bring:

The terrors of law and of God,

With me can have nothing to do;

My Saviour’s obedience and blood

Hide all my transgressions from view.”

Amen