Wednesday, August 20, 2014

A GREAT SOLEMN GLADNESS

"When this perishable body puts on imperishability, and this mortal body puts on immortality, then the saying that is written will be fulfilled:
'Death has been swallowed up in victory.'
'Where, O death, is your victory?
Where, O death, is your sting?'
The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ." (1 Corinthians 15:54-57 NRSV)

No one who is fit to live need fear to die.  Poor, timorous, faithless souls that we are!  How we shall smile at our vain alarms, when the worst has happened!  To us here, death is the most terrible word we know.  But when we have tasted its reality, it will mean to us birth, deliverance, a new creation of ourselves.  It will be what health is to the sick man.  It will be what home is to the exile.  It will be what the loved one given back is to the bereaved.  As we draw near to it, a great solemn gladness should fill our hearts.  It is God’s great morning lighting up the sky.

-- George Springs Merriam (1843-1914) in A Living Faith [1876]


#3491

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

THE LIVING GOD OF THE UNIVERSE

God is full of surprises. Mere superficial pressures never determine life's outcome… If you are intimately linked with the living God of the universe, you don't need to worry about what the crowd is doing -- or even what the king is doing. The same God who created the world is able to carry you through and to work out every situation of your life, no matter how impossible it may seem.

-- Ray Stedman in Adventuring Through the Bible


#3490

Monday, August 18, 2014

ADOPTED BY GOD

"For all who are led by the Spirit of God are children of God. For you did not receive a spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received a spirit of adoption. When we cry, 'Abba! Father!' it is that very Spirit bearing witness with our spirit that we are children of God,…" (Romans 8:14-16)

As I get older, I find that I am becoming more like my father. People say that I look more like my father. I find myself saying things that sound just like what my father said to me when I was a child. I find myself adopting some of the attitudes and values of my father. Like father, like son.

The power of family links to influence us in subtle and obvious ways is strong. The influence can be positive or negative. Some traits or genes we would prefer not to inherit, like a temper or a predisposition to diabetes. I might like to inherit my parent’s patience or a gift for music.

Paul suggests that we have a spiritual father since becoming a Christian. We have been adopted by God, grafted into a new family tree. When we cry out to God, using the intimate and familiar phrase “Abba,” the same salutation Jesus used, it is as if our very souls know that we are God’s children. That’s the proof! Our souls know at the deepest level to whom we belong.

-- R. Scott Sullender in The Upper Room Disciplines 2012: A Book of Daily Devotions. Copyright (c) 2011 by Upper Room Books. All rights reserved. Used by permission.


#3489

Friday, August 15, 2014

DOING THE IMPOSSIBLE

Jesus looked at them and said, “For mortals it is impossible, but not for God; for God all things are possible.” (Mark 10:27)

Child of God, learn a family secret. God specializes in things we think are totally impossible.

-- Charles Swindoll


#3488

Thursday, August 14, 2014

WHAT CAN WASH AWAY MY SINS?

One night in a church service a young woman felt the tug of God at her heart. She responded to God's call and accepted Jesus as her Lord and Savior. The young woman had a very rough past, involving alcohol, drugs, and prostitution. But, the change in her was evident. As time went on she became a faithful member of the church. She eventually became involved in the ministry, teaching young children. It was not very long until this faithful young woman had caught the eye and heart of the pastor's son. The relationship grew and they began to make wedding plans. This is when the problems began.

You see, about one half of the church did not think that a woman with a past such as hers was suitable for a pastor's son. The church began to argue and fight about the matter. So they decided to have a meeting. As the people made their arguments and tensions increased, the meeting was getting completely out of hand.  The young woman became very upset about all the things being brought up about her past. As she began to cry the pastor's son stood to speak. He could not bear the pain it was causing his wife-to-be. He began to speak and his statement was this: " My fiancée's past is not what is on trial here. What you are questioning is the ability of the blood of Jesus to wash away sin. Today you have put the blood of Jesus on trial. So, does it wash away sin or not?" The whole church began to weep as they realized that they had been slandering the blood of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Too often, even as Christians, we bring up the past and use it as a weapon against our brothers and sisters. Forgiveness is a very foundational part of the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ. If the blood of Jesus does not cleanse the other person completely then it cannot cleanse us completely. If that is the case, then we are all in a lot of trouble.

What can wash away my sins, nothing but the blood of Jesus... end of case!!!

-- Author Unknown


#3487