JOHN 3:16

Hope in your eternal inheritance

“I pray that your hearts will be flooded with light so that you can understand the wonderful future he has promised to those he called. I want you to realize what a rich and glorious inheritance he has given to his people.

I pray that you will begin to understand the incredible greatness of his power for us who believe him.”

Ephesians 1:18-19 

Paul’s prayer for the Ephesians

“While the believers in Ephesus enjoyed the luxuries and wealth of a cosmopolitan city located on major trade routes, Paul was confined to a small room in Rome, under the constant watch of a Roman guard. But who would ever guess from Paul’s prayer that he was deprived of anything?

Paul’s confident description of God’s power does not betray a hint of hopelessness. Instead, Paul speaks of the rich inheritance and wonderful future he would have in heaven. Paul’s future on earth was in the hands of Caesar. Yet Paul’s ultimate hopes weren’t set on this world; his hopes were set on heaven and eternity.

In your prayers, place your hopes on your eternal inheritance in heaven, just as Paul did. Pray that God might help you understand how powerful he is.

A prayer for today…

Dear Lord, help me understand the wonderful future you have promised me…

From The One Year® Book of Bible Prayers edited by Bruce Barton (Tyndale) entry for December 6

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

DEAR READER

RED ROCKS MORRISON CO 10 2013

Morning

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“Base things of the world hath God chosen.” 1 Corinthians 1:28

Walk the streets by moonlight, if you dare, and you will see sinners then. Watch when the night is dark, and the wind is howling, and the picklock is grating in the door, and you will see sinners then. Go to yon jail, and walk through the wards, and mark the men with heavy over-hanging brows, men whom you would not like to meet at night, and there are sinners there. Go to the Reformatories, and note those who have betrayed a rampant juvenile depravity, and you will see sinners there. Go across the seas to the place where a man will gnaw a bone upon which is reeking human flesh, and there is a sinner there. Go where you will, you need not ransack earth to find sinners, for they are common enough; you may find them in every lane and street of every city, and town, and village, and hamlet. It is for such that Jesus died. If you will select me the grossest specimen of humanity, if he be but born of woman, I will have hope of him yet, because Jesus Christ is come to seek and to save sinners. Electing love has selected some of the worst to be made the best. Pebbles of the brook grace turns into jewels for the crown-royal. Worthless dross he transforms into pure gold. Redeeming love has set apart many of the worst of mankind to be the reward of the Saviour’s passion. Effectual grace calls forth many of the vilest of the vile to sit at the table of mercy, and therefore let none despair.

Reader, by that love looking out of Jesus’ tearful eyes, by that love streaming from those bleeding wounds, by that faithful love, that strong love, that pure, disinterested, and abiding love; by the heart and by the bowels of the Saviour’s compassion, we conjure you turn not away as though it were nothing to you; but believe on him and you shall be saved. Trust your soul with him and he will bring you to his Father’s right hand in glory everlasting.

Evening

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“I am made all things to all men, that I might by all means save some.” 1 Corinthians 9:22

Paul’s great object was not merely to instruct and to improve, but to save. Anything short of this would have disappointed him; he would have men renewed in heart, forgiven, sanctified, in fact, saved. Have our Christian labours been aimed at anything below this great point? Then let us amend our ways, for of what avail will it be at the last great day to have taught and moralized men if they appear before God unsaved? Blood-red will our skirts be if through life we have sought inferior objects, and forgotten that men needed to be saved. Paul knew the ruin of man’s natural state, and did not try to educate him, but to save him; he saw men sinking to hell, and did not talk of refining them, but of saving from the wrath to come. To compass their salvation, he gave himself up with untiring zeal to telling abroad the gospel, to warning and beseeching men to be reconciled to God. His prayers were importunate and his labours incessant. To save souls was his consuming passion, his ambition, his calling. He became a servant to all men, toiling for his race, feeling a woe within him if he preached not the gospel. He laid aside his preferences to prevent prejudice; he submitted his will in things indifferent, and if men would but receive the gospel, he raised no questions about forms or ceremonies: the gospel was the one all-important business with him. If he might save some he would be content. This was the crown for which he strove, the sole and sufficient reward of all his labours and self-denials. Dear reader, have you and I lived to win souls at this noble rate? Are we possessed with the same all-absorbing desire? If not, why not? Jesus died for sinners, cannot we live for them? Where is our tenderness? Where our love to Christ, if we seek not his honour in the salvation of men? O that the Lord would saturate us through and through with an undying zeal for the souls of men.

All rights belong to the collections of Charles Spurgeon(C)

 

ARE WE GOOD STEWARDS?

424

 

Stewards of Our Stories

Acts 26:1-23

When Paul is brought before Agrippa and given the opportunity to plead his case, he presents the gospel by telling his own story, including the electrifying account of his conversion. Most of us do not have stories as dramatic as Paul’s, but anyone who has met Jesus has a story to tell. Our stories—not only the stories of our conversions, but the stories of our faith journeys and stewardship experiences—can be a source of insight and inspiration to others. Author Eugene Peterson writes about the importance of story.

Existence has a story shape. The most adequate rendering of the world in words is by storytelling. It is the least specialized and most comprehensive form of the language. Everything and anything can be put into the story. And the moment it is in the story it has meaning, participates in plot, is somehow or other significant. The biblical revelation comes to us in the form of story. Nothing less than story is adequate to the largeness and intricacy of the truth of God and creation, or of the human fall and redemption.

It is through storytelling in general that values are transmitted and morals are imparted. Author Philip Kenneson explains:

Most cultures of the past have devoted considerable time and energy to the task of moral formation. In most of those cultures this moral formation was facilitated largely by identifying exemplars to be imitated and through the telling of stories. Both practices mutually reinforced each other, because stories of virtuous people made it possible to recognize them in your midst, while flesh and blood exemplars served to remind us that the most powerful stories are embodied ones.

It is also important to tell and keep our stories alive for the generations that come after us. Stories about how God has provided for us—about how giving and receiving have caused us growth in faith and in community—are important so that we remember. Author Daniel Taylor recounts how in Joshua 4:1–7 God tells his people how to remember. Read the passage and consider the following:

The [author] here is trying to convince his audience that when they remember who they are, where they have come from, and who their God is, they prosper. When they quit telling the stories, they no longer know who they are and disaster ensues. That is why God tells Joshua to have each of the tribes of Israel contribute a rock to commemorate God’s provision in leading them across the Jordan River. The rock monument in their midst will cause the children of the next generation to ask, “Why are those rocks there?” That question will prompt the story, and a new generation will understand the power of God. We, too, must build rock monuments, primarily in story form, to the values our experience has taught us are most crucial.

Think About It

What was the outcome of Paul’s storytelling?

  • How do stories act upon both the teller and the hearer?
  • What stories do you have to share that will encourage someone, enlighten someone or draw someone closer to God?

Act on It

 

When you answered the questions above, did you feel prompted to share a story with another person or group? Determine who might benefit from your story, then make it a priority to share with others this week.

 

Revelation Of God’s Word By The Holy Spirit

John 14:26              King James Version (KJV)
But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.
Thank you Father for the guidance of you Holy Spirit and the revelation of your Holy Word by Him!  Your name be praised and revered.  Amen.

Morning

“But all the Israelites went down to the Philistines, to sharpen every man his share, and his coulter, and his axe, and his mattock.”
1 Samuel 13:20

We are engaged in a great war with the Philistines of evil. Every weapon within our reach must be used. Preaching, teaching, praying, giving, all must be brought into action, and talents which have been thought too mean for service, must now be employed. Coulter, and axe, and mattock, may all be useful in slaying Philistines; rough tools may deal hard blows, and killing need not be elegantly done, so long as it is done effectually. Each moment of time, in season or out of season; each fragment of ability, educated or untutored; each opportunity, favourable or unfavourable, must be used, for our foes are many and our force but slender.

Most of our tools want sharpening; we need quickness of perception, tact, energy, promptness, in a word, complete adaptation for the Lord’s work. Practical common sense is a very scarce thing among the conductors of Christian enterprises. We might learn from our enemies if we would, and so make the Philistines sharpen our weapons. This morning let us note enough to sharpen our zeal during this day by the aid of the Holy Spirit. See the energy of the Papists, how they compass sea and land to make one proselyte, are they to monopolize all the earnestness? Mark the heathen devotees, what tortures they endure in the service of their idols! are they alone to exhibit patience and self-sacrifice? Observe the prince of darkness, how persevering in his endeavours, how unabashed in his attempts, how daring in his plans, how thoughtful in his plots, how energetic in all! The devils are united as one man in their infamous rebellion, while we believers in Jesus are divided in our service of God, and scarcely ever work with unanimity. O that from Satan’s infernal industry we may learn to go about like good Samaritans, seeking whom we may bless!

Evening

“Unto me, who am less than the least of all saints, is this grace given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ.”
Ephesians 3:8

The apostle Paul felt it a great privilege to be allowed to preach the gospel. He did not look upon his calling as a drudgery, but he entered upon it with intense delight. Yet while Paul was thus thankful for his office, his success in it greatly humbled him. The fuller a vessel becomes, the deeper it sinks in the water. Idlers may indulge a fond conceit of their abilities, because they are untried; but the earnest worker soon learns his own weakness. If you seek humility, try hard work; if you would know your nothingness, attempt some great thing for Jesus. If you would feel how utterly powerless you are apart from the living God, attempt especially the great work of proclaiming the unsearchable riches of Christ, and you will know, as you never knew before, what a weak unworthy thing you are. Although the apostle thus knew and confessed his weakness, he was never perplexed as to the subject of his ministry. From his first sermon to his last, Paul preached Christ, and nothing but Christ. He lifted up the cross, and extolled the Son of God who bled thereon. Follow his example in all your personal efforts to spread the glad tidings of salvation, and let “Christ and him crucified” be your ever recurring theme. The Christian should be like those lovely spring flowers which, when the sun is shining, open their golden cups, as if saying, “Fill us with thy beams!” but when the sun is hidden behind a cloud, they close their cups and droop their heads. So should the Christian feel the sweet influence of Jesus; Jesus must be his sun, and he must be the flower which yields itself to the Sun of Righteousness. Oh! to speak of Christ alone, this is the subject which is both “seed for the sower, and bread for the eater.” This is the live coal for the lip of the speaker, and the master-key to the heart of the hearer.

All rights  belongs tothe collection  Charles Spurgeon(C)

 

WHY DO WE KICK AGAINST THE GOADS?

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Acts 26

26 Then Agrippa said to Paul, “You have permission to speak for yourself.”

So Paul motioned with his hand and began his defense: 2 “King Agrippa, I consider myself fortunate to stand before you today as I make my defense against all the accusations of the Jews, 3 and especially so because you are well acquainted with all the Jewish customs and controversies. Therefore, I beg you to listen to me patiently.

4 “The Jewish people all know the way I have lived ever since I was a child, from the beginning of my life in my own country, and also in Jerusalem5 They have known me for a long time and can testify, if they are willing, that I conformed to the strictest sect of our religion, living as a Pharisee6 And now it is because of my hope in what God has promised our ancestors that I am on trial today.7 This is the promise our twelve tribes are hoping to see fulfilled as they earnestly serve God day and night. King Agrippa, it is because of this hope that these Jews are accusing me.8 Why should any of you consider it incredible that God raises the dead?

9 “I too was convinced that I ought to do all that was possible to oppose the name of Jesus of Nazareth10 And that is just what I did in Jerusalem. On the authority of the chief priests I put many of the Lord’s people in prison, and when they were put to death, I cast my vote against them. 11 Many a time I went from one synagogue to another to have them punished, and I tried to force them to blaspheme. I was so obsessed with persecuting them that I even hunted them down in foreign cities.

12 “On one of these journeys I was going to Damascus with the authority and commission of the chief priests. 13 About noon, King Agrippa, as I was on the road, I saw a light from heaven, brighter than the sun, blazing around me and my companions.14 We all fell to the ground, and I heard a voice saying to me in Aramaic, â€˜Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me? It is hard for you to kick against the goads.’

15 “Then I asked, ‘Who are you, Lord?’

“ â€˜I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting,’ the Lord replied. 16 ‘Now get up and stand on your feet. I have appeared to you to appoint you as a servant and as a witness of what you have seen and will see of me. 17 I will rescue you from your own people and from the Gentiles. I am sending you to them 18 to open their eyes and turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, so that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in me.’

19 “So then, King Agrippa, I was not disobedient to the vision from heaven. 20 First to those in Damascus, then to those in Jerusalem and in all Judea, and then to the Gentiles, I preached that they should repent and turn to God and demonstrate their repentance by their deeds. 21 That is why some Jews seized me in the temple courts and tried to kill me. 22 But God has helped me to this very day; so I stand here and testify to small and great alike. I am saying nothing beyond what the prophets and Moses said would happen— 23 that the Messiah would suffer and, as the first to rise from the dead, would bring the message of light to his own people and to the Gentiles.”

24 At this point Festus interrupted Paul’s defense. “You are out of your mind, Paul!” he shouted. “Your great learning is driving you insane.”

25 “I am not insane, most excellent Festus,” Paul replied. “What I am saying is true and reasonable. 26 The king is familiar with these things, and I can speak freely to him. I am convinced that none of this has escaped his notice, because it was not done in a corner.27 King Agrippa, do you believe the prophets? I know you do.”

28 Then Agrippa said to Paul, “Do you think that in such a short time you can persuade me to be a Christian?”

29 Paul replied, “Short time or long—I pray to God that not only you but all who are listening to me today may become what I am, except for these chains.”

30 The king rose, and with him the governor and Bernice and those sitting with them.31 After they left the room, they began saying to one another, “This man is not doing anything that deserves death or imprisonment.”

32 Agrippa said to Festus, “This man could have been set free if he had not appealed to Caesar.”

New International Version (NIV)Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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DEFINE GOAD:

Definition of GOAD

1
: something that pains as if by pricking : thorn

: something that urges or stimulates into action : spur

2
: a pointed rod used to urge on an animal

Examples of GOAD

  1. The threat of legal action is a powerful goad to companies that have ignored the regulations.
  2. sufficient goad for using sunscreen>

Origin of GOAD

Middle English gode, from Old English gād spear, goad; akin to Langobardic gaida spear, and perhaps to Sanskrit hinotihe urges on

First Known Use: before 12th century

Other Animal Husbandry Terms

Rhymes with GOAD

2goad

transitive verb

Definition of GOAD

1
: to incite or rouse as if with a goad
2
: to drive (as cattle) with a goad

Examples of GOAD

  1. The threat of legal action should goad them into complying.
  2. <tried to goad me into auditioning for the play>

First Known Use of GOAD

1579

Other Animal Husbandry Terms

Browse

Next Word in the Dictionary: goadman
Previous Word in the Dictionary: Goa cedar
All Words Near: goad
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DEFINE GOADS BIBLE:

In the Bible what does to ‘kick against the goads’ mean?

Answer:

Interesting question. There is some discrepancy about that verse, because “kick against the goads” is actually not in the original manuscript of Acts 9:5 that tells the story of Paul’s conversion. Some think that an overzealous monk may have added it when transcribing when it appears later in Paul’s retelling of the event in Acts 26:14. But more than likely, it was either 1) something that Paul received personally from God during the event or 2) a then common day proverb that, in hindsight, Paul later related his pre-conversion life to.Ultimately, “kick against the goads” is a metaphor. Goads were used to prod cattle and livestock forward, and they would frequently kick back at them, only causing themselves more injury. The thought is that Paul has been kicking against God’s “goading,” and God has been trying to urge him to go in a certain direction.

The relation in modern day is that Paul is telling us that people still “kick against the goads” today. There is a way of right life & right belief but we fight it. And in doing so, we aren’t hurting God… we are only hurting ourselves.

http://wiki.answers.com/Q/In_the_Bible_what_does_to_’kick_against_the_goads’_mean

END

THE LORD IS MIGHTY

HOLY SPIRIT

HOLY SPIRIT

Acts 20:1-16

Through Macedonia and Greece

20 When the uproar had ended, Paul sent for the disciples and, after encouraging them, said goodbye and set out for Macedonia. 2 He traveled through that area, speaking many words of encouragement to the people, and finally arrived in Greece, 3 where he stayed three months. Because some Jews had plotted against him just as he was about to sail for Syria, he decided to go back through Macedonia. 4 He was accompanied by Sopater son of Pyrrhus from Berea, Aristarchus and Secundus from Thessalonica, Gaius from Derbe, Timothy also, and Tychicus and Trophimus from the province of Asia.5 These men went on ahead and waited for us at Troas. 6 But we sailed from Philippi after the Festival of Unleavened Bread, and five days later joined the others at Troas, where we stayed seven days.

Eutychus Raised From the Dead at Troas

7 On the first day of the week we came together to break bread. Paul spoke to the people and, because he intended to leave the next day, kept on talking until midnight.8 There were many lamps in the upstairs room where we were meeting. 9 Seated in a window was a young man named Eutychus, who was sinking into a deep sleep as Paul talked on and on. When he was sound asleep, he fell to the ground from the third story and was picked up dead. 10 Paul went down, threw himself on the young man and put his arms around him. “Don’t be alarmed,” he said. “He’s alive!” 11 Then he went upstairs again and broke bread and ate. After talking until daylight, he left. 12 The people took the young man home alive and were greatly comforted.

Paul’s Farewell to the Ephesian Elders

13 We went on ahead to the ship and sailed for Assos, where we were going to take Paul aboard. He had made this arrangement because he was going there on foot. 14 When he met us at Assos, we took him aboard and went on to Mitylene. 15 The next day we set sail from there and arrived off Chios. The day after that we crossed over to Samos, and on the following day arrived at Miletus. 16 Paul had decided to sail past Ephesus to avoid spending time in the province of Asia, for he was in a hurry to reach Jerusalem, if possible, by the day of Pentecost.

New International Version (NIV)Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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COMMENTARY: http://www.biblestudytools.com/commentaries/matthew-henry-complete/acts/20.html

 

PAUL’S GOODBYE

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Acts 20:17-38

17 From Miletus, Paul sent to Ephesus for the elders of the church. 18 When they arrived, he said to them: “You know how I lived the whole time I was with you, from the first day I came into the province of Asia19 I served the Lord with great humility and with tears and in the midst of severe testing by the plots of my Jewish opponents. 20 You know that I have not hesitated to preach anything that would be helpful to you but have taught you publicly and from house to house. 21 I have declared to both Jews and Greeks that they must turn to God in repentance and have faith in our Lord Jesus.

22 “And now, compelled by the Spirit, I am going to Jerusalem, not knowing what will happen to me there. 23 I only know that in every city the Holy Spirit warns me that prison and hardships are facing me. 24 However, I consider my life worth nothing to me; my only aim is to finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me—the task of testifying to the good news of God’s grace.

25 “Now I know that none of you among whom I have gone about preaching the kingdom will ever see me again.26 Therefore, I declare to you today that I am innocent of the blood of any of you. 27 For I have not hesitated to proclaim to you the whole will of God. 28 Keep watch over yourselves and all the flock of which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers. Be shepherds of the church of God, which he bought with his own blood. 29 I know that after I leave, savage wolves will come in among you and will not spare the flock. 30 Even from your own number men will arise and distort the truth in order to draw away disciples after them.31 So be on your guard! Remember that for three years I never stopped warning each of you night and day with tears.

32 “Now I commit you to God and to the word of his grace, which can build you up and give you an inheritance among all those who are sanctified. 33 I have not coveted anyone’s silver or gold or clothing. 34 You yourselves know that these hands of mine have supplied my own needs and the needs of my companions. 35 In everything I did, I showed you that by this kind of hard work we must help the weak, remembering the words the Lord Jesus himself said: â€˜It is more blessed to give than to receive.’ â€

36 When Paul had finished speaking, he knelt down with all of them and prayed. 37 They all wept as they embraced him and kissed him.38 What grieved them most was his statement that they would never see his face again. Then they accompanied him to the ship.

New International Version (NIV)Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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COMMENTARY @ http://www.biblestudytools.com/commentaries/matthew-henry-complete/acts/20.html

GOD BLESS ALL