Saturday, April 25, 2020

April 25

Even though we may be living in a troubled time, as the chosen of the Lord, our feet will be kept from stumbling. Our strength comes not from what we have physically, but from our trust in the Lord, and the good that comes only from him. The enemy will not prevail! He may cause upheaval for a time, and it may even look like he is winning, but we know the truth; when the history of the earth is finished, we will be satisfied with the results, because we win. It’s not only about being blessed in the end, look at the people of the Bible and how God prospered them while they were on earth. 

Hannah was barren and felt poor, but she prayed with her soul for a son, even went so far as to dedicate him to the service of the Lord, before she had even conceived. She prayed so hard that her lips moved, but no voice came out; Eli the priest thought she was drunk. God gave her Samuel, and she gave him back, but then he gave her five more children! If you are suffering, don’t give up, and don’t give in to the enemy’s plan. Trust in God, and wait for his plan to unfold. While you wait, praise him, and thank him for the blessings you are about to receive. 

He raises up the poor from the dust; he lifts the needy from the ash heap to make them sit with princes and inherit a seat of honor. For the pillars of the earth are the LORD's, and on them he has set the world. “He will guard the feet of his faithful ones, but the wicked shall be cut off in darkness, for not by might shall a man prevail. 1 Samuel 2:8-9

Friday, April 24, 2020

April 24

After finishing the book of Judges, the next book is Ruth. Ruth is somewhat of a continuation of Judges, because Boaz was a Judge in Bethlehem. If you read through it slowly, and soak in every morsel, you will notice that Boaz is a picture of Jesus.

The scripture lets us know that Boaz was much older than Ruth, and that she was not an Israelite. He commends her for not going after the younger men; he was taken by her because of her good reputation of loving, and working to help her mother in law, Naomi. There is even a moment where he gives her a morsel of bread and allows her to dip it in the bowl of wine, just like a picture of communion with Jesus. The secular definition of communion is, - “the sharing or exchanging of intimate thoughts and feelings, especially when the exchange is on a mental or spiritual level.” What a beautiful way to define communion! Ruth and Boaz shared this moment, even though communion hadn’t been instituted by Jesus yet, it is a precursor to what is to come. 

The next time you take communion, think of this definition; it is an intimate exchange between you, and Jesus. This is just one picture of Jesus in the book of Ruth; when you get the chance, read it, and see if you can find other morsels pointing to Jesus; you may be surprised.

And at mealtime Boaz said to her, “Come here and eat some bread and dip your morsel in the wine.” So she sat beside the reapers, and he passed to her roasted grain. And she ate until she was satisfied, and she had some left over. Ruth 2:14

Thursday, April 23, 2020

April 23

Have you ever experienced betrayal? Most of us have. Several things occur within us; hurt, disappointment, jealousy, anger, to name a few. We can’t comprehend why the person we love would turn away from us to go to another who hasn’t loved them like we have, especially when we know that the love the other person has for them is for their own selfish gain. Our loved one may have suffered from a moment of poor judgment, but the heartbreak within our soul cuts deep to our core. 

Imagine how Jesus feels when we turn away from him to please ourselves with our sinful desires. He has given us everything and yet we still seek pleasure from the evil things of this earth. It’s time for us to straighten up, take the narrow path, and stop chasing after the satisfaction of sin, and turn back to the one who has loved us enough to be tortured, and then hung on a cross, just to save us from being destroyed by our own wickedness. 

Today is the day, turn around, and run back to our Savior. He is waiting with open arms.

Therefore let us be grateful for receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, and thus let us offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe, for our God is a consuming fire. Hebrews 12:28-29

Wednesday, April 22, 2020

April 22

It’s amazing the difference a small change can make. For instance, you can paint a room a different color, and it will give it a whole new feel. Depending on the color you use, new paint could make it feel warm and cozy, or cooler and bigger. My daughter in love just added new flooring to her home, and the transformation is incredible. It went from eighties tile, to beautiful wood, which brought it into today’s style. If such a small change can transform your physical space, what simple change can you make to improve your spiritual well being? There are two things you can do that are simple, and free; read your Bible daily, and pray. It is a transformation that each of us needs, to be able to focus and redirect our lives to come in line with all that God has for us. Just like changing a room with new paint or flooring, simply talking to God through prayer, and listening to God through reading the Bible will do wonders for your life, and change your perspective for the better. Make a commitment today to transform your life by reading the word of God, and praying daily.

"And they devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers." Acts 2:42

Tuesday, April 21, 2020

April 21

One of the greatest tragedies of our time is the sacrificing of our children. Even though we know it not to be true, many will say that they are nothing but tissue until they are born, or some kind of parasite living on its host. There are many places in the Bible that tells us that God knew us before we were born. 

The story of Samson begins with Jesus visiting Samson’s mother who was barren, to tell her that she would conceive a child that would be a Nazirite to God, and not to drink any wine or eat anything unclean because he would be a Nazirite from the womb to death. He did not want her to eat those foods forbidden for a Nazirite because her body feeds the baby. This is just one more instance where the Bible assures us that babies are human before they are born; science also proves this to be right. Supporters of abortion say ‘Let’s just cut that part out of the Bible, and believe only what we want to believe.’ The truth is, you either believe all of the Bible or you believe none of it! It becomes invalid if any portion is untrue. If you support abortion in any way, shape, or form, you do not know love, you do not know Jesus, the Holy Spirit does not reside in you, and you are on your way to hell! Forgive me for being so blunt, but you need to know the truth.

If you’ve had an abortion, there is forgiveness for you if you ask; Jesus knows you were lied to through man by the enemy, and will forgive you.

but he said to me, ‘Behold, you shall conceive and bear a son. So then drink no wine or strong drink, and eat nothing unclean, for the child shall be a Nazirite to God from the womb to the day of his death.’” Judges 13:7

Monday, April 20, 2020

April 20

Bless their hearts, Israel couldn’t stay focused on God, and would turn from him to chase after the gods of other countries. It seems interesting that they knew to go back to him and beg for his help. At one point God had had enough and told them, “Yet you have forsaken me, and served other gods; therefore I will save you no more.”  However, Israel cleaned up their act, got rid of the other gods, and because God couldn’t stand seeing them oppressed any longer, he sent Jephthah to fight for them. Jephthah had the spirit of God upon him, but made a vow to God that if he won this battle, he would sacrifice the first thing that came out of his door, but unfortunately it was his only child, his daughter. God gave Jephthah victory, and so he kept his vow.

Do not make a vow to God that you can’t keep! We’ve all probably said things like, “God, if you’ll get me out of this, I will not________________again.” If that is the case for you, you had better keep your vow, otherwise keep your mouth shut, God doesn’t take these things lightly. Be careful of any words you speak over yourself; remember that the devil hears them too. (Judges 11)

"Be not rash with your mouth, nor let your heart be hasty to utter a word before God, for God is in heaven and you are on earth. Therefore let your words be few."  Ecclesiastes 5:2

Sunday, April 19, 2020

April 19

After Deborah, Israel had peace for 40 years; but, as usual, they did evil in the eyes of the Lord and began worshipping other gods, Baal, and Asherah. They were being oppressed by the Midian, who would come in and devour all their crops as soon as they were ready, and eat all their livestock. The Lord heard Israel’s cries for help, so he sent Gideon, a prophet. After a couple of tests to make sure it was God speaking to him, he gathered men to go against them. But God wanted all the credit, and sorted them out, down to only 300. Gideon went with his servant to scope out the competition, and got close enough to hear a dream one of the men had. In the dream Gideon defeated them; this gave him the confidence he needed, but caused fear to grow in the Midian. When Gideon armed his men with trumpets, and jars of fire, and surrounded them, it caused such a stir and fear within them, that some ended up killing themselves, and others ran for their lives. 

This is a much longer story with many details; I’ve summarized it to bring out a point; sometimes all it takes to become defeated is a rumor, lots of noise, and flashes of light. Make sure you dig deep into what is causing you fear; maybe the threat is minor, and can be easily overcome.

Every man stood in his place around the camp, and all the army ran. They cried out and fled. When they blew the 300 trumpets, the LORD set every man's sword against his comrade and against all the army. And the army fled as far as Beth-shittah toward Zererah, as far as the border of Abel-meholah, by Tabbath. Judges 7:21-22