Integrity

God has great rewards for those who remain faithul

Do you ever feel it doesn’t pay to live a godly life?

GREAT IS THY FAITHFULNESS

“Day by day the Lord takes care of the innocent, and they will receive a reward that lasts forever.”
Psalm 37:18 NLT

God will honor your integrity

Maybe last month it was a relational disaster or an occupational trial. This week it might be a financial setback. Next week could bring a health crisis. After a while the unrelenting stream of tough times takes its toll.

“What’s the use?” we cry. “I try to do right and for what? Life keeps beating me up! I can’t get ahead! I’m not sure it pays to try to live a godly life. I struggle as much or more than my neighbors who couldn’t care less about God!”

Troubles certainly have a way of wearing us down. And if we’re not careful, they can erode even our bedrock convictions. The promise in Psalm 37 is a good reminder of why we must be vigilant about not taking moral or ethical shortcuts.

Those who maintain their integrity, those who continue to do right even when everything and everyone else is wrong will one day receive the ultimate reward.

Praying God’s Promise:
Life doesn’t seem fair at times, Lord, and integrity often doesn’t seem to matter. But it does matter. You see everything. Nothing escapes your gaze. You promise to care for the pure and to reward the faithful. Give me the spiritual tenacity to hang in there. Remind me that the day is coming when you will exalt those who steadfastly trust in you.

From the Praying God’s Promises in Tough Times by Len Wood (Tyndale) pp 204-5
Content is derived from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation and other publications of Tyndale Publishing House

NO MORE SORROW

God will wipe away sorrow forever

JESUS SOON COMING

 

Faith does not isolate us from sadness

Sing to the Lord, all you godly ones! Praise his holy name. His anger lasts for a moment, but his favor lasts a lifetime! Weeping may go on all night, but joy comes in the morning.

Psalm 30:4-5

I am leaving you with a gift — peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give isn’t like the peace the world gives. So don’t be troubled or afraid.

John 14:27 
Truly, you will weep and mourn over what is going to happen to me, but the world will rejoice. You will grieve, but your grief will suddenly turn to wonderful joy when you see me again. It will be like a woman experiencing the pains of labor. When her child is born, her anguish gives place to joy because she has brought a new person into the world. You have sorrow now, but I will see you again; then you will rejoice, and no one can rob you of that joy.
John 16:20-22 

Bond of understanding

There is an immediate bond of understanding between people who have suffered similar hardships or losses. Parents who have lost children, widows and widowers, and families of terminal-disease patients, all find comfort and encouragement in the presence of those who have known similar pain.

Paul urges believers to see opportunities for giving comfort as both a way to share the comfort of God and to use their own experiences of sorrow for good. We rarely know why suffering or trials enter our lives, but we can know that God wants to do through our sorrow.

Who do you know right now who needs a word of encouragement or comfort that your experience has prepared you to give?

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


 

GLOBAL EVENTS = PROPHECY UPDATE 2017


REV 1:8 I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty.

A PILGRIM’S JOURNEY

No temptation is too great

How can you avoid the guilt experiences by John Bunyan?

How can I know all the sins lurking in my heart? Cleanse me from these hidden faults.
Keep me from deliberate sins! Don’t let them control me.

Psalm 19:12-13 

Now, all glory to God, who is able to keep you from stumbling, and who will bring you into his glorious presence innocent of sin and with great joy.

Jude 1:24 

A Pilgrim making progress

John Bunyan, who wrote the class The Pilgrim’s Progress, (CLICK LINK TO WATCH MOVIE: PILGRIM’S PROGRESS JOURNEY)had been a godless youth with a “great desire to take fill of sin, still studying what sin was yet to be committed, that might taste the sweetness of it.” However, while still in his twenties, Bunyan was convicted by the Holy Spirit of his sinfulness and his need for a Redeemer.

After this Bunyan’s conscience became so tender that he feared he was committing sins that would not be forgiven. Bunyan spent time studying Scripture, at times finding comfort and at other times being weighed down by guilt.

Looking back on those turbulent days in his life, Bunyan recognized he had made some big mistakes. Although he had prayed for cleansing, he had not prayed to be kept from future sin. In addition, he was not standing firmly on the rock of his salvation, even though he had asked Christ to be his Redeemer (see Psalm 19:12-14).

Perhaps you have trusted Christ to save you, but you still experience spiritual defeat. This is not unusual, but you do need to address the problem. Each new day ask God to help you follow him more closely. But do not be afraid, for, as Bunyan later wrote, our “righteousness is Jesus Christ himself, the same yesterday, today, and forever.”

adapted from The One Year® Book of Psalms by William J. Petersen and Randy Petersen,, Tyndale House Publishers (1999), entry for February 6

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

Hypocrisy

Lies will be exposed

 

Exposing hypocrisy

“But God shows his anger from heaven against all sinful, wicked people who push the truth away from themselves.”

Romans 1:18  

The Lord hates those who don’t keep their word, but he delights in those who do.

Proverbs 12:22 

One day, we’ll all “face the music”

“The expression “face the music” originated in Japan. One man in the imperial orchestra couldn’t play a note, but as a person of great influence and wealth, he demanded to be given a seat; he wanted the emperor to see him “perform.” The conductor agreed to let the man sit in the second row. He was handed a flute, and when a concert began, he’d raise his instrument, pucker his lips, and move his fingers. He went through all the motions of playing but never made a sound. His deception continued for two years.

Then a new conductor took over. He told the orchestra that he would audition each player personally. One by one the musicians performed in his presence. At last came this flutist’s turn. Frantic with worry, he pretended to be sick — but his lies caught up with him. The doctor who examined him declared him perfectly fine. Finally the pretender had to admit he was fake. He couldn’t face the music.

Ready or not, all of us will one day face the music. We will all appear before the Lord, without masks and without deception. Better that we show our true faces to the world now than have someone ask on that day, “Who was that unmasked man?”

from Breakfast with Jesus by Greg Laurie (Tyndale) pp 149-50

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

No Double Standards

 

God is always fair and just

How often do you want to “get even?”

The Lord despises double standards of every kind.

Proverbs 20:10 

Never pay back evil to anyone. Do things in such a way that everyone can see you are honorable. Do your part to live in peace with everyone, as much as possible. Dear friends, never avenge yourselves. Leave that to God. For it is written, “I will take vengeance; I will repay those who deserve it,” says the Lord.

Romans 12:17-19 

Don’t say, “I will get even for this wrong.” Wait for the Lord to handle the matter.

Proverbs 20:22 

God’s measure

How often do we see the evil around us and pray for God’s justice? We wonder, Why does God allow this evil to go on! This kind of thinking leads to two of the most common double standards: (1) judging others more harshly than we judge ourselves, and (2) believing God should judge others but remain lenient with us.

The Lord despises double standards because they elevate one person at the expense of others. These man-made standards also lack the mercy of God.

In our cry for fairness, we should not forget the frightening consequences of justice. As sinners, God could justly destroy each of us today for missing the mark of perfection. When we remember that God’s patience and mercy block his judgment towards us, we will more likely show others patience and mercy.

WISE WAYS Before you rush to judge another person, ask yourself whether you would be able to endure the same standard.

Today, Lord, give me strength to replace judgment with mercy.

Adapted from The One Year® Book of Proverbs by Neil S. Wilson, Tyndale House Publishers (2002), entry for March 20

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

GOD’S FORGIVENESS OF SINS

 

God forgives all sins, no matter how big

Why would God want to forgive?

“I will cause wonders in the heavens and on the earth blood and fire and pillars of smoke. The sun will be turned into darkness, and the moon will turn blood red before that great and terrible day of the Lord arrives. And anyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved. There will be people on Mount Zion in Jerusalem who escape, just as the Lord has said. These will be among the survivors whom the Lord has called.”

Joel 2:30-32  

If we say we have no sin, we are only fooling ourselves and refusing to accept the truth. But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us and to cleanse us from every wrong.

1 John 1:8-9 

Bound by His Word

“Why would God want to forgive people who have spent a lifetime denying him and hurting him? Why doesn’t he just zap them? In our humanity we say that certain people don’t deserve forgiveness. In his sovereignty and perfect love. God says, “I love and forgive those who, to others, appear unsalvageable.” This is just one of the ways in which God’s thoughts are beyond our own. His mercy is so overwhelming that it can seem unreasonable to us. Are you willing to let God’s mercy do as it wishes  with anyone?1


If His conditions are met, God is bound by His Word to forgive any man or any woman of any sin because of Christ.

Billy Graham2

1from the TouchPoint Bible with commentaries by Ron Beers and Gilbert Beers (Tyndale) p 760
2quoted in Wise Words & Quotes by Vernon McLellan (Tyndale) p 102

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