Monday, April 13, 2015

A Devotional Thought From Isaiah

… the ambassadors of peace shall weep bitterly.     Isaiah 33:7

Arguably the nuclear negotiations re: Iran and the bomb are the most important going on today anywhere, because of their worldwide implications. But negotiations with a nation that has no concern for other nations, or cultures, or religions, is perilous to say the least. Already one leader of the Western nations after describing what was in the framework of a deal has been contradicted by the Supreme Leader of Iran. So whose interpretation is Iran going to follow, if they follow anything, because they are notorious for being less than willing to sacrifice to develop peace with those who do not subscribe to their religion. None dispute the desire for peace in the Middle East that the other negotiating nations have, but this phrase lifted from Isaiah 33:7 describes what is likely the outcome the world will see, …the ambassadors of peace shall weep bitterly.

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

A Devotional Thought From Ecclesiastes

The things that have been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun.     Ecclesiastes 1:9

The preacher of Ecclesiastes tells us in this verse that in the cycle of life there continue the same sins and actions today that were done yesterday and years ago; centuries and millennia ago. The human race, when unredeemed, lives committing the same sins that have been the wicked deeds of all societies. Adultery, terrorism, murder, political intrigue, war, horrendous atrocities, lying, theft, repeat themselves over and over again, and will until Jesus comes. The reason? Human beings are sinners, and when they are unredeemed by salvation through Christ, we can expect nothing more than a continual repeating of the usual sins. There is no new thing under the sun. This makes George Santayana’s famous philosophical statement, “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it,” a truism. Good government, and the ministry of the Holy Spirit are designed by God restrain sin.

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

He is not here: for he is risen, as he said.     Matthew 28:6
How is it possible that intelligent people can hear the story of Jesus; how He came to be the Savior of the world and the only way possible for Him, as the holy God, to forgive sinners was for Him to give His life a ransom for many, which He freely did, and then rose again to prove the message true; how is it possible that they do not give this historical event any serious consideration?
If the story ended in His death and that was it – well, that would be that. But the story continues. He had told His disciples He would rise again, and to the everlasting glory of God He actually broke the power of death and came alive again; walked out of the grave. When followers came to complete the burial process that had been cut short by the beginning of the Sabbath, the tomb was empty and the angel said, Why seek ye the living among the dead? (Luke 22:5)

That is some story! So how is it possible that so many who hear it do not have the intellectual or spiritual curiosity to investigate? How is it they do not cry out to God “If the story of Jesus is true, help me to know it, and I will believe.” How is it possible that in a world that is erupting with hate and death the nations are not seeking the truth that will make them free. In the last century a European governmental leader was quoted by a leading world-class preacher as saying “… outside of the resurrection of Jesus Christ I know of no other hope for mankind.”

Saturday, March 28, 2015

…Blessed be the king that cometh in the name of the Lord: peace in heaven, and glory in the highest. Luke 19:38
The crowd got it right, at least on the surface, that day of the triumphal entry of Jesus into Jerusalem. He is the king, not of the Hebrews only, but of the entire world (no matter who doesn’t like it), of the universe, and of the heart of man. But back then at that moment, and tragically still this moment in modern times, the human heart is in rebellion against Him, and though some might give lip service, the human heart often goes with the fickle crowd that turned Blessed be the king into crucify him.
The human heart needs to be converted to the truth. Jesus is the truth. The human heart needs to yield its loyalty to God’s king. Jesus is the king. The human heart needs to be converted to a new life of joy, peace, and love. Jesus is the life.

As the Christian world remembers the waving palm fronds, and praises of Palm Sunday marking Jesus as the king, examine your own heart to see if praises to Jesus are welling up from within you.
Go sing His praises in church and declare Him king of your heart.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

A Devotional Thought From Proverbs

The memory of the just is blessed: but the name of the wicked shall rot.     Proverbs 10:7

Their names sit rotting upon the garbage dumps of history. They are remembered for the rape, pillage, cruelty, and murder they inflicted on the human race: Huns, Nazis, Mau Maus, Stalinists, and others. The stink of their evil surfaces whenever their names are spoken, and the blood of their millions of victims cries from the earth against them. Example: Jonah 1:2, Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and cry against it; for their wickedness is come up before me. Other names, today’s names, those of terrorist groups and other wicked ones, will join them rotting on that same garbage heap, smelling to high heaven. I hope it will be soon, but whether it is soon, or not until Jesus comes the terrorists will face judgment and defeat. Name the names. You know them. None can defy the will of God and succeed in the evil they do. There is no wisdom nor understanding nor counsel against the LORD (Proverbs 21:30). There will come a time when like decaying corpses on the steaming garbage heaps of Gehenna the very mention of their names will bring the rotten stink.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Devotional Thoughts From Proverbs

For at the window of my house I looked through my casement, And beheld among the simple ones, I discerned among the youths, a young man void of understanding. … And, behold, there met him a woman with the attire of an harlot, and subtle of heart. … Her house is the way to hell, going down to the chambers of death.     Proverbs 7:6,7,10,27

     Though many in Western society do not wish to hear it, sexual sin is not only against the will of the living God for all humanity, but it is dangerous. Sexual sin can result in sickness, remorse, loss of character, death, and even hell.
     Young people engaged in premarital fornication spoil themselves morally, and rob their future spouses of the purity God desires them to bring to the marriage bed. Married men and women put their marriages and families in the path of danger, at risk for breakup and generational immorality when they commit adultery. They also risk an unfaithful spouse’s passing of disease to the other. How many children are being born around the world with A.I.D.S., or other dread diseases that come from sexual sin?
     Jealous husbands (and wives) have been known to kill over infidelity. A man may die raving in a mental hospital completely out of his mind because of sexually transmitted disease, or could be killed in a car accident on a rain swept night as he speeds to the immoral rendezvous, or be mugged and murdered by criminals waiting for unsuspecting Johns outside a brothel.
     A society loses social purity, uprightness, honesty, structural support, moral strength, and political wisdom when sexual sin is the basis of communal life. The banding together of one ethnic group against another, violence in the streets, the powerful oppressing the powerless are all companion sins of the sexual sins that plague a society.

     Modern Western societies need is to repent towards God, and have respect towards our fellow man.

Monday, March 9, 2015

A Devotional Thought From Psalms

Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: they shall prosper that love thee.     Psalm 122:6

In a world were the nation Israel is often berated, accused, and fired upon by her enemies it is well that Christians remember these words from the Psalms. God has declared that He loves Jerusalem and the people of Israel. He wants peace for them, His chosen people of the Old Testament, and the place where He has set His name. Christians are like their Father in heaven, and as such we love Israel too, and we want her to be blessed, and we want peace for the city of David, Jerusalem. That presumes peace for the whole nation. Christian individuals, Christian churches, and all nations of the world will prosper when they have the attitude of concern respect and love that praying for others expresses. And they will prosper because of the Jewish people. God said to Abraham, the first man in the Hebrew line, the beginning of the people of Israel, And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth  thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed (Genesis 12:3). So pray for the peace of Jerusalem, whoever you may be.