Friday, November 30, 2012

The Father Is Raising A Family

10 God, for whom and through whom everything was made, chose to
bring many children into glory.

If you want to understand life, and the Bible, then you need to
understand God's plan and purpose.

We're here because God wants a family.

This is what life is all about. The best description and
summary of what is going on is that God is raising a family. It
is happening in a realm where there is free choice and
temptation to do wrong, but God has provided everything
necessary for our complete victory and maturity.

If you keep this perspective clearly in view, it will give you
the right framework for your thinking about God. Every thing
God does has this purpose in mind.

18 And I will be your Father, and you will be my sons and
daughters, says the LORD Almighty."

We are in preparation for eternity, and this life on earth is
just first grade in our learning experience.

45 In that way, you will be acting as true children of your
Father in heaven. For he gives his sunlight to both the evil
and the good, and he sends rain on the just and the unjust

Jesus revealed that we should primarily relate to God as a
Father. Not as our judge, not as our boss, but as a loving
Father who is training us to be like Jesus, so we can enjoy
fellowship with Him for eternity.

(We cannot become like Jesus by our own effort. Only by
receiving Jesus and allowing Him to live through us is it
possible to become like Him.)

ROMANS 8:28-29 NLT
28 And we know that God causes everything to work together for
the good of those who love God and are called according to his
purpose for them.
29 For God knew his people in advance, and he chose them to
become like his Son, so that his Son would be the firstborn
among many brothers and sisters.

1 JOHN 3:2 NLT
2 Dear friends, we are already God's children, but he has not
yet shown us what we will be like when Christ appears. But we
do know that we will be like him, for we will see him as he
really is.

God is training his family and preparing us to be fit
companions to Deity for eternity. God is raising a family that
He will enjoy being with, and not just have to tolerate.

In the light of eternity our spiritual growth is most
important. How can we recognize spiritual growth? By the fruit
of the spirit, which is the same as becoming more like Jesus

15 Instead, we will speak the truth in love, growing in every
way more and more like Christ, who is the head of his body, the

22 But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our
lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness,
23 gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these

Becoming more like Jesus and learning the ways of God is God's
plan for you in this life.

SAY THIS: I am glad to be part of the eternal family my Father
God is raising and training.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Do Not Fear Death

4 "And I say to you, My friends, do not be afraid of those who
kill the body, and after that have no more that they can do.

Since Jesus defeated death and removed its sting, believers
should no longer be motivated by fear of death.

55 O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your
sting? "
57 But thank God! He gives us victory over sin and death
through our Lord Jesus Christ.

Death has been defeated by Jesus. Now the death of a Christian
believer is just a transition from this lower reality to a
higher, more perfect, and lasting reality. For anyone trusting
in Jesus, there is no reason to be afraid.

I believe that death is now like birth: just an entry into an
unknown but better place, a place of more freedom and
consciousness, where we will continue to learn and grow, as we
enjoy the goodness of God.

LUKE 20:38 NLT
38 So he is the God of the living, not the dead, for they are
all alive to him."

Death is not the end. And death is only sleep for your body,
not sleep for the real you which lives inside your body. After
you die your body will sleep in death till the great
Resurrection, but you will be alive with God all the time.

8 Yes, we are fully confident, and we would rather be away from
these earthly bodies, for then we will be at home with the

21 For to me, living means living for Christ, and dying is even
23 I'm torn between two desires: I long to go and be with
Christ, which would be far better for me.

Believers need to realize that passing through death means we
will be far better off. Why be afraid of that?

JOHN 14:1-3 NKJ
1 "Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe
also in Me.
2 "In My Father's house are many mansions; if it were not so, I
would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.
3 "And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again
and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be

When you leave this life, Jesus has a place prepared for you --
better than what you have experienced here. He told you to not
be afraid! You can trust Jesus.

14 Therefore, since the children share a common physical nature
as human beings, he became like them and shared that same human
nature; so that by his death he might render ineffective the
one who had power over death (that is, the Adversary)
15 and thus set free those who had been in bondage all their
lives because of their fear of death.

Through the fear of death, the devil has been able to hold us
in slavery, by getting us to do whatever it took to avoid
dying. Believers are supposed to overcome this fear because of
the victory of Jesus. We should live our lives fearless --
knowing that God is watching out for us and will always be with
us and take care of us -- even in death.

So we should never let the enemy stop us from doing God's will
because of fear that we might die.

Every one of us needs to finish our race and fulfill God's plan
for us on earth before we die. But when it comes time to die,
we should not fear.

SAY THIS: I will not fear death. I will trust in Jesus my Lord.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

The Bible Is Spiritual Food

2 as newborn babes, desire the pure milk of the word, that you
may grow thereby,

If you want to grow as you should as a Christian -- feed on
God's Word just as a newborn baby desires to be fed. If you
know anything about babies, you know they require regular

It's not just a quick reading of the Word that you need. You
must chew the Word to get the "milk" out of it. This just means
you need to meditate on God's Word to get all that you should
from it. You can't just gulp it down quickly and expect to
receive all its nutrition. It takes some time and effort to
think on the Word and digest it, so that it becomes a part of

The food we take into our physical bodies does not nourish us
unless we properly digest and assimilate it into our cells.
Spiritual food is the same. The Word you read has to "become
flesh" in you. It has to become part of you. As it nourishes
you, it will change you by changing the way you see yourself
and the way you see others.

It is possible to study the Bible and not believe it, not
personalize it, and not internalize it. This type of mental
study does not feed your spirit.

Personalizing the Word and speaking it, helps us digest the
Word so it becomes part of us. This, along with thinking and
seeing in agreement with the Word, is Bible meditation.

You are who God says you are. You have what God says you have.
You can do what God says you can do. You need to say whatever
God has said about you. This is the primary way you will be fed
and grow spiritually.

4 But He answered and said, "It is written, 'Man shall not live
by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth
of God.'"

Matthew 4:4 shows us that God's Word somehow sustains life, as
does bread in the physical realm. But we need more than physical
food to enjoy life as God intended. God's Word is our spiritual
food which will enrich our life.

17 So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of

God's Word produces faith in our hearts and renews our minds.
It is vital for our spiritual growth. God's Word is our
spiritual food.

16 Your words were found, and I ate them, And Your word was to
me the joy and rejoicing of my heart; For I am called by Your
name, O LORD God of hosts.

SAY THIS: I will eat the Word of God every day.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Focus On Eternity

19 "Don't store up treasures here on earth, where moths eat
them and rust destroys them, and where thieves break in and
20 Store your treasures in heaven, where moths and rust cannot
destroy, and thieves do not break in and steal.

When I was young my family had a wall plaque which said:

"Only one life, will soon be past.
Only what's done for Christ will last."

13 But on the judgment day, fire will reveal what kind of work
each builder has done. The fire will show if a person's work
has any value.

If I buy a vehicle for myself it will last only a few years.
Then it will rust, wear out, and break down.

But if I buy a vehicle for someone that will enable them to
preach the Gospel to more people, the blessing and memory of
that purchase will last for eternity.

This is not to say it is wrong to have nice things for
ourselves. (For it does not bring glory to God for us to be in
lack.) But we should not focus only on ourselves and our needs
alone. If you are selfish and self-centered you will actually
rob yourself of blessing, both now and for eternity.

10 Therefore, whenever we have the opportunity, we should do
good to everyone -- especially to those in the family of faith.

Each day we have a choice: live for eternity, or live for

The wise person will invest time and treasure in what will

SAY THIS: I will focus on things that count for eternity.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Children, Obey Your Parents

God's Word, the Bible, teaches children to respect, honor, and
obey their parents.

20 Children, obey your parents in all things, for this is well
pleasing to the Lord.

1 Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right.
2 "Honor your father and mother," which is the first
commandment with promise:
3 "that it may be well with you and you may live long on the

Only when we are children are we to OBEY our parents. But we
should always HONOR our parents as long as we live. To honor
primarily means to show respect and treat with special

4 . . . having his children in submission with all reverence

Children should submit to their parents and show them respect.

Even if your parents do not serve God, you still must respect
and obey them. However, God does not expect you to obey them
when they tell you to sin by doing wrong things. (see Acts

From the Old Testament we learn how serious it is for children
not to submit to their parents. The punishment was very severe.
In those days children who refused to submit to their parents
were killed!

We are not living under the Old Testament law, but it was
written to teach us. It shows us what God thinks of rebellious

18 "If a man has a stubborn and rebellious son who will not
obey the voice of his father or the voice of his mother, and
who, when they have chastened him, will not heed them,
19 "then his father and his mother shall take hold of him and
bring him out to the elders of his city, to the gate of his
20 "And they shall say to the elders of his city, `This son of
ours is stubborn and rebellious; he will not obey our voice; he
is a glutton and a drunkard.'
21 "Then all the men of his city shall stone him to death with
stones; so you shall put away the evil person from among you,
and all Israel shall hear and fear.

SAY THIS: It is God's will for children to obey their parents.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

You Carry Jesus

JOHN 12:14-15 NKJ
14 Then Jesus, when He had found a young donkey, sat on it; as
it is written:
15 "Fear not, daughter of Zion; Behold, your King is coming,
Sitting on a donkey's colt."

If you have received Jesus, then Jesus lives in you. So
wherever you go, Jesus goes. Just like the donkey in the verse
above, you carry Jesus.

16 And what agreement has the temple of God with idols? For you
are the temple of the living God. As God has said: "I will
dwell in them And walk among them. I will be their God, And
they shall be My people."

God is not living in a building on earth, but in people who
believe in the Lord Jesus Christ. When people need or want to
find God, they should be able to come to you.

20 "I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who
live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in
the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and
gave Himself for me.

Paul, who wrote this, understood that he was a carrier. You
need to understand that you are also a carrier of Jesus. Jesus
did not die on the cross just to redeem Paul the apostle. You
are saved just like Paul was, with the same salvation and the
same benefits.

27 To them God willed to make known what are the riches of the
glory of this mystery among the Gentiles: which is Christ in
you, the hope of glory.

SAY THIS: I will carry Jesus into my world.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

I Will Be A Father To You

18 "I will be a Father to you, And you shall be My sons and
daughters, Says the LORD Almighty."

You may not have been blessed with good earthly parents. But
you are blessed with a wonderful, perfect Heavenly Father!

Earthly fathers may fail us, but Scripture reveals that our
Father God is much better than any earthly parent. God is
perfect, and He never fails!

11 "If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to
your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven
give good things to those who ask Him!

15 "Can a woman forget her nursing child, And not have
compassion on the son of her womb? Surely they may forget, Yet
I will not forget you.

You will face problems in life, but no matter what you face,
your Father God will be there to take care of you.

What did God mean when He promised to be a Father to you?

A father is someone stronger, more capable, and more
knowledgable than you are, and thus able to provide for you
when you are not able to do so for yourself.

A good father assumes responsibility for his children, to
provide for them, care for them, and train them so they can be

A school may decide to "expel" a child who is not responding as
they wish. But a good father will continue to care for their
child, no matter what.

A child does not have to be perfect to be loved and provided
for by a good parent. Nor do you have to be perfect for God to
love you. God loves you simply because you are His child, not
because you are perfect.

A good father will correct you, but His aim is to provide
encouragement, not discouragement. And a good father never
expects more from a child than the child is capable of doing.

Also a good father never does anything that would harm his
child. Every good and perfect gift comes from our Father God,
and anything harmful is from our enemy the devil.

If you are a Christian believer then Almighty God promises to
be a Father to you! What a comforting thought! This should
cause you to face life with confidence.

SAY THIS: God promised to assume responsibility for being a
Father to me!

Friday, November 23, 2012

Do Business For God

LUKE 19:13,15 ESV
13 Calling ten of his servants, he gave them ten minas, and
said to them, 'Engage in business until I come.'
15 When he returned, having received the kingdom, he ordered
these servants to whom he had given the money to be called to
him, that he might know what they had gained by doing business.

Your working life is supposed to be for more than just meeting
your needs. Your work is an avenue God can use to bless people
in many ways. You should use all that you have been given: your
influence, your contacts, your profits, to bless people and
turn them toward God.

Many people won't listen to a pastor or TV preacher, but they
will listen to someone they know and contact in daily life.

You don't have to be a pastor or a priest to walk with God and
be used by Him. Think of Abraham, David, Moses, and Daniel. Not
one of them was a preacher or a priest. Instead, they were all
involved in agriculture or government, what we consider as
secular jobs. Yet they are among the most famous and revered of
Bible characters.

Also we should keep in mind that Jesus of Nazareth spent most
of His years on earth as a carpenter -- a businessman -- not a

23 Work willingly at whatever you do, as though you were
working for the Lord rather than for people.

You can see God move just as much in the work place as at a
church meeting. God is interested in blessing people right
where they are.

Where you work and spend your time is your "world." God does
not expect or ask most people to win some other country for
Him. God expects you to be a witness right where you are. Be a
witness of God's blessing and goodness and love. You don't have
to force your beliefs on people, but let your associates and
customers and suppliers and co-workers see God's blessing in
your life, and as you have opportunity let them know it is
because of God's grace and goodness -- which is also available
for them.

SAY THIS: I will bloom where I am planted and faithfully use
what God has given me for His glory and the growth of His

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Should Christians Use Their Imagination?

18 while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at
the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen
are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal.

Many Christians are afraid of using their imagination, equating
it with evil. But God surely had a reason to make mankind with
an imagination. Once, as I was thinking about this, the
question came to me, "Why did God create man with an
imagination?" I do believe He is the Creator, don't you? And
God did make man with an imagination.

When I asked God if there was any scriptural support for using
our imagination, it occurred to me to look in Hebrews 11. As I
began reading the chapter I was shocked at what I found, even
though I had read it many times before!

Right in verse 1, faith is defined as ". . .evidence of things
not seen." I thought, "If it is something you can't see, then
it has to deal with the realm of the imagination." People would
say we were believing something that is just imaginary if it
couldn't be seen. In fact the dictionary says imagine means: to
form a mental image of (something not present). What could more
closely describe the Bible definition of faith in Hebrews 11:1!

By this time I was excited, but the chapter was just beginning.
Time and again, I saw that people in this chapter had used
their imagination; that they had "seen" what was not visible to
others. I began to realize that faith is linked with
imagination like wet is linked with water. The two are

Then I began to understand why the devil had stirred up such a
fuss over this subject. No doubt one main reason the devil
inspired eastern religions to utilize the imagination was to
muddy the waters and make Christians afraid it might be wrong.

As I read of Abraham I thought of Genesis 15:5 where God told
him to "count the stars. . . So shall your descendants be." If
God wasn't telling Abraham to use his imagination, I don't know
what He was telling Him to do!

So be Biblical without fear. Take what God has said in His
Word, and imagine it that way in your life!

5 Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth
itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into
captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;

We must cast down imaginations that do not agree with God's
Word, and keep and nurture the ones that do.

SAY THIS: Imagination is part of faith, so I will imagine in
agreement with God's Word.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

When You Stand Praying Forgive

MARK 11:25 NKJ
25 "And whenever you stand praying, if you have anything
against anyone, forgive him, that your Father in heaven may
also forgive you your trespasses.

Forgiveness is a choice -- not a feeling. Your feelings may not
change while you are praying, but you can choose to forgive at
any time. It does not take long to make a choice.

How long does it take to forgive? How long can you stand and

Jesus never said anything about the person deserving
forgiveness. Nor did He say to forgive only after they asked
for forgiveness.

Anytime you talk to God, Jesus said to forgive if you had
anything against anyone. That would include people who hurt you
without even realizing they hurt you. Even people who were
still trying to hurt you. "Anyone" in this verse includes
everyone, no matter what their attitude may be.

Why should you forgive them? Not because they deserve it. But
because of the harm it will cause you if you don't forgive. The
reason you are to forgive others is to maintain your status
with God.

Jesus indicates there is something about us refusing to forgive
others that hinders our relationship with God and the free flow
of blessings God desires for us to receive.

I understand that forgiving someone who horribly wronged you is
not easy, especially if they are not even sorry for what they
did. But Jesus makes it clear that you have no real option. You
MUST forgive if you want God's forgiveness. I need not tell you
how vital that is.

If Jesus appeared to you right now and asked you face-to-face
to forgive someone who hurt you -- would you do it for Him? We
should respect Jesus' Word just as much as we would respond to
Jesus appearing to us face-to-face.

SAY THIS: I forgive and release everyone who has ever hurt me.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Selfishness: The Opposite Of Divine Love

3 Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but
in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than
4 Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but
also for the interests of others.

Selfishness, not hate, is the opposite of divine love.

All the problems in the world today are the result of
selfishness. The problems in our governments and with our
economies are all the result of selfishness. The problems in
our families are the result of selfishness.

16 Where there is jealousy and selfishness, there is also
disorder and every kind of evil.

The answer is for each of us to desire the best for others,
even to the point of sacrificing our own benefit to see others
blessed. This describes divine love.

That's how Jesus lived. His aim was to benefit others, not to
please Himself. Jesus suffered so we would not have to suffer.

This love is a commandment for all Christian believers. But
this commandment is given for our good, not to discourage us or
condemn us. With the command we are also given the nature and
ability to perform the command.

JOHN 13:34 NKJ
34 "A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another;
as I have loved you, that you also love one another.

All who receive Jesus Christ can walk in the same divine love
Jesus did, because they have God's life in them. This is why
all people MUST be born again, so they can be set free from
sin's bondage by being cured of selfishness.

5 Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has
been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given
to us.

(Christians can choose to act selfishly, but when they do, they
are acting against their own nature.)

SAY THIS: I choose to obey God and walk in divine love, which
is the opposite of selfishness.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Love Like Jesus

JOHN 13:15 NKJ
15 "For I have given you an example, that you should do as I
have done to you.

JOHN 13:34 NKJ
34 "A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another;
as I have loved you, that you also love one another.

JOHN 14:12 NKJ
12 "Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the
works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these
he will do, because I go to My Father.

JOHN 15:12 NKJ
12 "This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have
loved you.

31 Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking
be put away from you, with all malice.
32 And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one
another, just as God in Christ forgave you.
1 Therefore be imitators of God as dear children.
2 And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and given
Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-
smelling aroma.

25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the
church and gave Himself for her,

12 Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on
tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering;
13 bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if
anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave
you, so you also must do.
14 But above all these things put on love, which is the bond of

43 "You have heard that it was said, 'You shall love your
neighbor and hate your enemy.'
44 "But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse
you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who
spitefully use you and persecute you,
45 "that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes
His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the
just and on the unjust.
46 "For if you love those who love you, what reward have you?
Do not even the tax collectors do the same?
47 "And if you greet your brethren only, what do you do more
than others? Do not even the tax collectors do so?
48 "Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in
heaven is perfect.

1 JOHN 2:6 NKJ
6 He who says he abides in Him ought himself also to walk just
as He walked.

SAY THIS: I choose to let Jesus love people through me.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Speak To The Problem

20 So Jesus said to them, . . . if you have faith as a mustard
seed, you will say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there,'
and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you.

While I won't question that what Jesus said is literally true,
I think the primary lesson He meant for us to understand is
that a mountain is anything standing in our way -- which we
would call a problem.

Lots of people speak to God about their problems. But not many
people speak to their problems and tell them to be gone.

It's not wrong to discuss things with God. But that is not all
we should do. Jesus spoke to problems and He instructed us to
speak to things we want removed from our lives.

6 And the Lord said, "If you had faith like a grain of mustard
seed, you could say to this mulberry tree, 'Be uprooted and
planted in the sea,' and it would obey you.

You may think it's strange to speak to things. But God created
this world and He knows how everything is designed to work. So
when Jesus tells us to speak to our problems, we should realize
that He knows how things operate.

The reason it seems strange to us is that we have not known the
ways of God.

God loves us even when we don't follow His instructions. But we
cannot expect good results in our life when we refuse to follow
God's instructions.

Whatever problem you face, speak to it and tell it what you
want it to do. "Be gone." "I refuse to allow you." "Get out of
my life."

18 I promise you that God in heaven will allow whatever you
allow on earth, but he will not allow anything you don't allow.

As a child of God in union with Jesus Christ you have authority
over every work of the enemy and everything that would harm you
(Luke 10:19). Because you have been given authority, you have
to use it.

You are supposed to choose what you allow in your life. (In
fact you do choose, whether you realize it or not.) But most of
us, out of ignorance, thought our only choice was to just
accept whatever happened. We didn't know any better. But now we
are learning. So we can make new choices, and see better

SAY THIS: I will speak directly to problems and tell them what
to do because God gave me authority in my life through Jesus

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Jesus Is Our Advocate

1 JOHN 2:1 NKJ
1 My little children, these things I write to you, so that you
may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the
Father, Jesus Christ the righteous.

The Greek word translated as Advocate in this verse is
parakletos. It means someone called to one's aid; someone who
pleads another's cause before a judge; a counsel for defense, a
legal assistant, an advocate, and a helper.

Many people have never fully grasped that Jesus Christ is on
our side. Just like a defense lawyer, He pleads our case.

We should not sin, because sin is harmful -- to us and to
others. But even if we do sin, Jesus Christ is still on our
side. He is not accusing us, but defending us on the basis of
His sacrifice at Calvary.

The devil is the one who accuses us, who brings up all our sins
and shortcomings, and tells us we don't deserve anything good.

10 Then I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, "Now salvation,
and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of His
Christ have come, for the accuser of our brethren, who accused
them before our God day and night, has been cast down.

Jesus is not the one who is trying to find us guilty. He
remains our Savior!

ROMANS 8:33-34 NLT
33 Who dares accuse us whom God has chosen for his own? No one
-- for God himself has given us right standing with himself.
34 Who then will condemn us? No one -- for Christ Jesus died
for us and was raised to life for us, and he is sitting in the
place of honor at God's right hand, pleading for us.

Jesus not only paid the penalty for all our sins by shedding
His own blood, but now He is our advocate pleading our case so
that we might enjoy all the blessings He purchased for us --
regardless of our failures.

21 For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we
might become the righteousness of God in Him.

Jesus took our place, suffering what we deserve, so that we
might receive, as a free gift, what Jesus deserves. This is
Good News!

SAY THIS: Jesus Christ is my defense attorney!

Friday, November 16, 2012

Love One Another

JOHN 13:34-35 ESV
34 A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another:
just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another.
35 By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if
you have love for one another."

JOHN 15:12 ESV
12 "This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have
loved you.

JOHN 15:17 ESV
17 These things I command you, so that you will love one

10 Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another
in showing honor.

8 Owe no one anything, except to love each other, for the one
who loves another has fulfilled the law.

7 To have lawsuits at all with one another is already a defeat
for you. Why not rather suffer wrong? Why not rather be

13 For you were called to freedom, brothers. Only do not use
your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love
serve one another.

2 with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with
one another in love,

32 Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one
another, as God in Christ forgave you.

12 and may the Lord make you increase and abound in love for
one another and for all, as we do for you,

9 Now concerning brotherly love you have no need for anyone to
write to you, for you yourselves have been taught by God to
love one another,

1 PETER 1:22 ESV
22 Having purified your souls by your obedience to the truth
for a sincere brotherly love, love one another earnestly from a
pure heart,

8 Finally, all of you, have unity of mind, sympathy, brotherly
love, a tender heart, and a humble mind.

8 Above all, keep loving one another earnestly, since love
covers a multitude of sins.

1 JOHN 3:11 ESV
11 For this is the message that you have heard from the
beginning, that we should love one another.

1 JOHN 3:23 ESV
23 And this is his commandment, that we believe in the name of
his Son Jesus Christ and love one another, just as he has
commanded us.

1 JOHN 4:7 ESV
7 Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and
whoever loves has been born of God and knows God.

1 JOHN 4:11-12 ESV
11 Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one
12 No one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God abides
in us and his love is perfected in us.

2 JOHN 1:5 ESV
5 And now I ask you, dear lady -- not as though I were writing
you a new commandment, but the one we have had from the
beginning -- that we love one another.

SAY THIS: I get it. The Bible tells me to love people.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Salvation Is A Completely Free Gift

8 God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can't
take credit for this; it is a gift from God.
9 Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done,
so none of us can boast about it.

If salvation is based on our performance -- on what we do --
then it is not by grace. Our salvation is based on what Jesus
Christ did. Our part is simply to receive the gift!

1 Abraham was, humanly speaking, the founder of our Jewish
nation. What did he discover about being made right with God?
2 If his good deeds had made him acceptable to God, he would
have had something to boast about. But that was not God's way.
3 For the Scriptures tell us, "Abraham believed God, and God
counted him as righteous because of his faith."
4 When people work, their wages are not a gift, but something
they have earned.

Salvation cannot be a free gift and also be something we must
earn. Either we earn it, or it is a gift. It cannot be a
mixture of the two.

If you claim to give me a gift, but you ask me for any payment
-- no matter how small -- then it is not a gift but something I
am buying for a reduced price. Buying something on sale does
not make it a gift. If there is any payment involved, by
definition, it is not a gift.

6 But if it is by grace, it is no longer on the basis of works,
otherwise grace is no longer grace.

Today, just as in Bible times, there are those who teach that
being right with God can only be achieved by keeping their list
of rules. But this is not the true teaching of the New

ACTS 15:5,10-11 NLT
5 But then some of the believers who belonged to the sect of
the Pharisees stood up and insisted, "The Gentile converts must
be circumcised and required to follow the law of Moses."
10 So why are you now challenging God by burdening the Gentile
believers with a yoke that neither we nor our ancestors were
able to bear?
11 We believe that we are all saved the same way, by the
undeserved grace of the Lord Jesus."

ROMANS 4:14,16 NLT
14 If God's promise is only for those who obey the law, then
faith is not necessary and the promise is pointless.
16 So the promise is received by faith. It is given as a free
gift. And we are all certain to receive it, whether or not we
live according to the law of Moses, if we have faith like
Abraham's. For Abraham is the father of all who believe.

5 he saved us, not because of the righteous things we had done,
but because of his mercy. He washed away our sins, giving us a
new birth and new life through the Holy Spirit.

Those who present a plan of salvation based on your performance
are not rightly dividing the Word. Yes, many Scriptures give
instruction on what we are to do. But they are instructions for
how to live, not how to be saved and enter the family of God.

Will there be rewards and consequences for our actions? Yes!
Scripture makes that clear. But our entrance into God's family
and our home in Heaven is not based on our performance, but on
our faith in what Jesus performed.

SAY THIS: I don't have to work to earn the free gift of God's

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

God Will Crush Satan Under Your Feet

20 The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet. May
the grace of our Lord Jesus be with you.

Many don't know it yet, but the New Testament reveals that God
has given authority over the devil to all Christians. Therefore
we have a responsibility to exercise that authority and stop
the devil.

Here are some of the verses that make that clear.

LUKE 10:19 NKJ
19 "Behold, I give you the authority to trample on serpents and
scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing
shall by any means hurt you.

MARK 16:17 NKJ
17 "And these signs will follow those who believe: In My name
they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues;

27 nor give place to the devil.

7 Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee
from you.

But one verse in the New Testament, Romans 16:20 (see above),
seems to give a different message. It seems to say we must wait
on God to do something about the devil, instead of doing it
ourselves. For a long time, this verse confused me because it
seemed to conflict with the rest of the New Testament teaching.

So who is responsible now for controlling the devil? Have
believers truly been given that responsibility? Or, should we
look to God expecting Him to do it?

Are we to wait on God to stop the devil's activities in our
lives, or are we supposed to do something by using the
authority Jesus gave us?

One day I finally saw it. Romans 16:20 is not saying that God
will do anything about the devil apart from you. God will work
through you and satan will be crushed UNDER YOUR FEET. It will
be your feet that do the crushing. The power working in you
will be from God, but the feet will be yours. In other words,
you must take action. You have to step out -- and step on --
the devil.

Romans 16:20 seems to say God will stop the devil -- which
would contradict all these other verses. But there is no
contradiction when you realize it is God working through the
believer to control the devil. In other words, the believer
must control the devil, but the power to do it is of God.

Believers must exercise their authority and resist the devil.
We cannot wait on God to do what He told us to do.

SAY THIS: God's plan is that the devil be under my feet.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

People Crave Love

9 But we don't need to write to you about the importance of
loving each other, for God himself has taught you to love one

If you want to understand why people do what they do, realize
that we are created to need love.

It is not just a desire, but a need. If humans are not getting
love, they will do whatever they can to try and get it.

Many foolish and harmful things are done simply because people
are craving love.

We want someone to value us, to even delight in us. We are
driven by our need for love and acceptance. All of us want to
be special to someone.

Insecurity is fear -- fear that you are not good enough, that
you will not be loved if it is known what you are really like.

But God knows everything about you, and He still considers you
so valuable that He was willing to die for you! When you KNOW
God loves you, lesser opinions are not as important.

1 JOHN 4:18 NLT
18 Such love has no fear, because perfect love expels all fear.
If we are afraid, it is for fear of punishment, and this shows
that we have not fully experienced his perfect love.

If people only knew the truth about God -- that He truly loves
them -- they would turn to God wholeheartedly.

We are God's representatives on earth. Unless we love people,
they will not believe God loves them.

1 JOHN 4:7 NLT
7 Dear friends, let us continue to love one another, for love
comes from God. Anyone who loves is a child of God and knows

SAY THIS: Lord help me to love people with Your love.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Love Means Giving

John 3:16 KJV
16 For God so loved the world, that he gave . . .

You can give without loving, but you can't love without giving.

When you love you will give of your time, you will give of
yourself, and you will give of your resources. Those who truly
love, hold nothing back.

The measure of your giving reveals the measure of your love.

Love is something we can't see, but we can see the evidence of
love in the action it produces, which is giving.

If you love someone you will also give them forgiveness. Love
causes you to be merciful, understanding, and forgiving.

Where you give your time and resources also reveals what you
love. If we think we love someone, yet never give to them of
our time or resources, then we are just deceiving ourselves.

There are many people in each of our lives who need and deserve
our love. Jesus Christ is the most deserving of all!

SAY THIS: My giving reveals my love.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Throw Your Cares On The Lord

1 PETER 5:6-7 NET
6 And God will exalt you in due time, if you humble yourselves
under his mighty hand
7 by casting all your cares on him because he cares for you.

Worry is associated with pride, as these verses reveal, for
being humble is the opposite of pride. And pride will, sooner
or later, cause you to fail, instead of lifting you up.

A person who worries is proud because their action shows they
think they are better and more compassionate than God. When you
analyze it, the thinking behind worry is really "God is not
doing a good enough job taking care of me, so I better take
over and figure something out on my own."

Pride makes us think we can handle things on our own -- apart
from God. Jesus said that without Him we can do nothing -- at
least nothing that amounts to anything. (We certainly can mess
up all by ourselves.)

One way to humble ourselves is to just put our lives in God's
hands and trust Him. It's like getting in a car someone else is
driving. You don't want to get in the car of a stranger who may
be untrustworthy. But God loves you more than you love yourself
and desires the best for you, so you can trust Him.

God knows how to drive and what is needed to get you where you
need to go. Since He loves you enough to die for you, surely
you can trust Him with smaller issues.

The word "casting" in 1 Peter 5:7 means "to throw."

Whatever is a burden to you, is troubling you, weighing you
down, causing you concern, or tempting you to worry is included
in what you are to throw over on the Lord. God wants us to
throw all those things over on Him, trusting Him to work it all
out for the best.

Then once you really throw them over to Him, you'll have peace
in your heart even though the problems still exist, because you
know the Lord is working.

Throwing something is not the same as pushing it aside a little
bit. Throwing something pictures getting rid of it completely.
When you throw something you don't have it anymore.

Instead of throwing the concern of the things they face over to
God, many just try to push them away a little at a time. They
ask God to help them, but they keep trying to solve things on
their own.

Yes, we have a part to play, and we can't just lock ourselves
in a room and expect God to go out and live our lives for us.
But the part we have to play is obedience. When God directs us
to do something we are to do it. But worrying ahead of time
about what will happen does no good.

You may find it helpful to perform a symbolic physical act like
writing all your "cares" on a paper that you then throw into
the trash. Symbolizing your faith by an act like this may make
it more real to you.

Read the following translations to help you meditate on this
verse and let the meaning deeply affect your thinking.

7 Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about

7 Casting the whole of your care [all your anxieties, all your
worries, all your concerns, once and for all] on Him, for He
cares for you affectionately and cares about you watchfully.

7 unload all your burden on to him, since he is concerned about

7 God cares for you, so turn all your worries over to him.

7 Leave all your worries with him, because he cares for you.

Although things may not be clear to you now, and things may not
seem to be working out, God is trustworthy. So don't depend on
your own understanding, but trust in God. He knows what He is
doing, and He loves you. You will understand better later on.

Worrying will never help. Instead of worrying and being
anxious, throw all your cares on the Lord.

SAY THIS: I need God's help, so I throw all my concerns over on
Him, trusting Him to work it all out for the best.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Keep The Faith!

14 So then, since we have a great High Priest who has entered
heaven, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to what we

Here on Earth, it is considered wise to save up for the future,
to have a plan for how you will be supported in your old age.
But how much more important should it be considered, to prepare
for eternity.

Some day, you will be living in Heaven. Then you will be glad
you trusted Jesus and honored Him here on Earth.

1 PETER 1:6-7 NLT
6 So be truly glad. There is wonderful joy ahead, even though
you have to endure many trials for a little while.
7 These trials will show that your faith is genuine. It is
being tested as fire tests and purifies gold -- though your
faith is far more precious than mere gold. So when your faith
remains strong through many trials, it will bring you much
praise and glory and honor on the day when Jesus Christ is
revealed to the whole world.

Jesus never promised that following Him would exempt us from
facing problems in this life. But He did promise to always be
with us, and to help us overcome whatever we face.

The devil's whole strategy is to steal your faith in God.
Whenever we receive revelation of God's Word, it is to be
expected that the devil will try to steal that word from our

19 "When anyone hears the word of the kingdom, and does not
understand it, then the wicked one comes and snatches away what
was sown in his heart. This is he who received seed by the

15 "And these are the ones by the wayside where the word is
sown. When they hear, Satan comes immediately and takes away
the word that was sown in their hearts.

How could satan take the Word away from someone? Only by
getting them to doubt it. By trying to arrange circumstances
and feelings to make it seem like God's Word is not true. Why
else would anyone turn loose of God's Word unless the Word does
not seem to be working in their life?

God requires you to trust Him -- and He deserves your trust.

6 And it is impossible to please God without faith. Anyone who
wants to come to him must believe that God exists and that he
rewards those who sincerely seek him.

So hang on tight to your faith in God and His Word!

If things don't seem to be working, ask God to teach you and
give you understanding of how to act on His Word accurately.
But never doubt God's faithfulness to keep His Word. Not only
will this benefit you in this life, but through all eternity.

SAY THIS: I will keep my faith in God because He is worthy of
my trust.

Friday, November 09, 2012

Fear Not!

50 But when Jesus heard it, he answered him, saying, Fear not:
believe only, and she shall be made whole.

The KJV Bible tells us 63 times to "fear not," and 31 times to
"be not afraid" or "not be afraid." Obviously, God is trying to
tell us something!

If it makes no difference whether we fear, or not, then God
wasted a lot of time in Scripture telling us to not be afraid.

Fear is the absence of faith. It can be understood as faith in
the devil. Fear is the opposite of believing and trusting in
God. Fear stops faith from working. You could say that fear is
faith in reverse.

Fear is the cause of all worry, for worry is meditation on

Some may think some fear is healthy, but no true fear is good.
We don't have to fear something to have a healthy respect for
it, and thus to act wisely. Fear makes people do irrational
things. Reverence for God, sometimes called the "fear of God"
is healthy, but it has nothing to do with actually being afraid
of God.

2 KINGS 6:15-17 NKJ
15 And when the servant of the man of God arose early and went
out, there was an army, surrounding the city with horses and
chariots. And his servant said to him, "Alas, my master! What
shall we do?"
16 So he answered, "Do not fear, for those who are with us are
more than those who are with them."
17 And Elisha prayed, and said, "Lord, I pray, open his eyes
that he may see." Then the Lord opened the eyes of the young
man, and he saw. And behold, the mountain was full of horses
and chariots of fire all around Elisha.

When we look at the world situation, it is easy to cry out like
the servant of Elisha. But when we are tempted to be afraid, it
is only because we are not seeing the reality of the whole
picture. God is for us, so no matter what comes against us, it
can never prevail over us.

We should ask God to open our eyes to the truth. Then keep our
focus on God's Word, not on the temptations, lies, and roarings
of the devil.

Fear is fed by what we look at and listen to. We can resist
fear by choosing to always focus on God and His promises.

6 "Be strong and of good courage, do not fear nor be afraid of
them; for the Lord your God, He is the One who goes with you.
He will not leave you nor forsake you."

When you remember that the Almighty God is ALWAYS with you (and
in you!) why should you be afraid?

7 "But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Do not
fear therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows.

One way to understand how valuable you are to God is to
consider the great price He paid to set you free -- the life of
Jesus Christ Himself!

Not even a good earthly parent would allow his child who
trusted in him to be harmed. God loves you more than any
earthly parent ever loved their child -- and God has the power
to fully protect you. So you can trust in Him.

But when we act in fear, we run from the protection of our
wonderful Father God and open the door to our enemy.

We should be free from fear because God is for us and watches
out for us. The worst that can happen to us (from a worldly
perspective) is to die, but even then we will go to be with
Jesus. With God on your side, there is really nothing to fear.

Yes, there will be struggles. There will be trials. But these
are just opportunities to overcome and gain eternal rewards. In
all we face in life, God has promised to be with us, and to
help us. So what is there to fear?

9 I repeat, be strong and brave! Don't be afraid and don't
panic, for I, the LORD your God, am with you in all you do."

SAY THIS: I will not fear! Jesus is Lord!

Thursday, November 08, 2012


7 "Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find;
knock and the door will be opened to you.
8 For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to
him who knocks, the door will be opened.

In Matthew 15:22-28 a woman came to Jesus making a request of
Him. Jesus' answer was basically that she was asking for
something that did not belong to her, because she did not have
a covenant with God.

Yet she asked -- and received! She didn't just beg. She
worshiped Jesus and appealed for mercy. She didn't claim she
deserved the answer -- but she did ask.

This is one of the secrets of life. Ask! It works with God and
it works in our relationships with people, too.

Ask questions. And ask for help.

Pride can prevent us from asking. Pride tells. Humility asks.

In marriage many people are unhappy. Yet they don't clearly
communicate to their spouse what it is they would like. Don't
nag! But respectfully and lovingly ask for what you desire.

Make your requests known. People can't read your mind. (God
knows our thoughts, but still tells us to ask Him for what we
need or desire.)

6 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and
supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made
known to God;

Many people stumble through life disappointed that God has not
given them more. One reason may be because God is waiting for
them to have enough faith to ask Him for His help.

I don't mean we should act like a beggar. But be bold in asking
for what you need or desire.

We may hold back from asking because we think we don't deserve
good things. Probably true! But Jesus deserves good and He died
so we could receive what He deserves. Jesus took what we
deserved so we could have better.

22 If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in

JOHN 16:24 NIV
24 Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask
and you will receive, and your joy will be complete.

2 You want what you don't have, so you scheme and kill to get
it. You are jealous of what others have, but you can't get it,
so you fight and wage war to take it away from them. Yet you
don't have what you want because you don't ask God for it.

Jesus said to ask. Actually, it is a command. Ask!

SAY THIS: I will obey God's Word and ask.

Wednesday, November 07, 2012

The Blessing Of The Lord Will Make You Rich

22 The blessing of the LORD makes one rich, And He adds no
sorrow with it.

All Christians generally agree, that in Old Testament times,
God prospered His people when they were obedient. But sadly,
because the devil's lies have infiltrated some of the Church's
teaching, many do not believe it's still God's will to prosper
His people today.

But the Lord does not change. He still desires His people to
enjoy abundance. Any problem lies with us -- not with God.

6 "For I am the LORD, I do not change; Therefore you are not
consumed, O sons of Jacob.

For us to receive and walk in God's blessing, we must walk in
faith. This is the main problem why Christians today are not
blessed. They simply do not believe prosperity is God's will
for them. If you don't believe something is God's will, you
cannot have faith to receive it.

The cure for lack of faith is feeding on God's Word, which
builds you up. As long as you base your beliefs on the
circumstances around you, instead of what you see in God's
revealed will -- the Bible -- you will not have all that God
has provided for you.

We must quit believing the lies of the devil -- no matter who
says them. Whatever is contrary to God's Word in the Bible is a

I am not criticizing other ministers or churches. Even Peter
fell into the trap of repeating the devil's lies. We all must
guard against believing the devil, and stick to what God has

23 But He turned and said to Peter, "Get behind Me, Satan! You
are an offense to Me, for you are not mindful of the things of
God, but the things of men."

If you study the Bible you will see that God is clearly for the
prosperity of His people, in both the Old and New Testaments.

9 For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though
He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that you
through His poverty might become rich.

In the Bible we are warned against trusting in riches instead
of God. There are verses that tell us we should not love money
or serve money. But these verses should not be taken out of the
context of the whole of Scripture and twisted in their meaning
to steal what Jesus has provided for us -- abundant provision
in every area of life.

SAY THIS: The blessing of the Lord is making me rich.

Tuesday, November 06, 2012

Who Will Govern?

7 His government and its peace will never end. He will rule
with fairness and justice from the throne of his ancestor David
for all eternity. The passionate commitment of the LORD of
Heaven's Armies will make this happen!

This is the question we must face, both as individuals and as
nations. Who, or what, will be our "king?" Who will be our
"supreme court?" (By "supreme court" I do not mean a group of
people who meet in a building, but the final authority that we
base our ideas, principles, and actions upon.)

We have a choice. We can choose Jesus Christ and His Kingdom of
Love, Light, and Life. Or we can choose selfishness and
darkness and death.

Whenever we reject Jesus and His Word from ruling over us,
whether as individuals or as a nation, we choose darkness.

I do not advocate any religious control over government. What
we need instead is people in government who know the truth and
will speak and act in truth and not out of self interest. We
need people in secular government who are submitted to Jesus as
their Lord and are willing to live and govern with His love for
mankind, instead of acting in self interest.

10 May your Kingdom come soon. May your will be done on earth,
as it is in heaven.

SAY THIS: Jesus, and those who have died with Him to self
interest, are qualified, and should be selected to govern.

Monday, November 05, 2012

Don't Ignore The Poor

10 Their only suggestion was that we keep on helping the poor,
which I have always been eager to do.

Not everyone who is poor is that way because of what they have
done. Disasters happen.

The enormity of the need worldwide can tempt us to just ignore
the plight of the poor. We can't help everyone, but that should
not keep us from helping someone.

27 Whoever gives to the poor will lack nothing, but those who
close their eyes to poverty will be cursed.

If you are reading this, then by definition you are not one of
the truly poor. You may be poorer than your neighbor, but there
are many people poorer than you are. The truly poor cannot
read, and struggle for food, which they don't have every day.

LUKE 16:19-21 NLT
19 Jesus said, "There was a certain rich man who was splendidly
clothed in purple and fine linen and who lived each day in
20 At his gate lay a poor man named Lazarus who was covered
with sores.
21 As Lazarus lay there longing for scraps from the rich man's
table, the dogs would come and lick his open sores.

In this account, the rich man did not oppress the beggar laying
at his gate, where he probably passed by every day. The rich
man just ignored him. The dogs seem to have had more mercy.
They at least licked the sores of the poor beggar, while the
rich man did nothing to help relieve his suffering.

13 Those who shut their ears to the cries of the poor will be
ignored in their own time of need.

God loves all the people of the world -- rich and poor. His
will is not that anyone should suffer or be forgotten. God
loves those who are poor. So we who have been blessed with more
should not forget them.

16 And don't forget to do good and to share with those in need.
These are the sacrifices that please God.

17 If you help the poor, you are lending to the LORD -- and he
will repay you!

10 Therefore, whenever we have the opportunity, we should do
good to everyone -- especially to those in the family of faith.

SAY THIS: I won't ignore the poor.

Sunday, November 04, 2012


MARK 11:25-26 NKJ
25 "And whenever you stand praying, if you have anything
against anyone, forgive him, that your Father in heaven may
also forgive you your trespasses.
26 "But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father in
heaven forgive your trespasses."

You must forgive others. No matter what they have done. It is
the command of God. But it was given for our benefit.

To not forgive hurts you. Refusing to forgive is like
swallowing poison daily. It will destroy you.

Jesus said we should forgive when we stand praying. So we don't
have to wait until people apologize. Nor does forgiveness
require a long time.

Forgiveness is not a feeling. It is a decision to quit holding
something against someone. When we forgive people we must
release them and forget it.

You may think it is impossible to forgive someone who has
deeply wronged you. With God it is possible. He never asks us
to do something we cannot do.

LUKE 6:35-38 NKJ
35 "But love your enemies, do good, and lend, hoping for
nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will
be sons of the Highest. For He is kind to the unthankful and
36 "Therefore be merciful, just as your Father also is
37 "Judge not, and you shall not be judged. Condemn not, and
you shall not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven.
38 "Give, and it will be given to you: good measure, pressed
down, shaken together, and running over will be put into your
bosom. For with the same measure that you use, it will be
measured back to you."

Whatever we measure out is what will be measured back to us. If
we want others -- including God -- to show mercy to us and
forgive us -- we must forgive and be merciful to others.

It is not enough to forgive only those people who have wronged
us a little. We must forgive everyone!

MATTHEW 18:21-22 NKJ
21 Then Peter came to Him and said, "Lord, how often shall my
brother sin against me, and I forgive him? Up to seven times?"
22 Jesus said to him, "I do not say to you, up to seven times,
but up to seventy times seven.

Surely Jesus was not setting a maximum limit on the number of
times we should forgive. He gave an absurdly high number so we
would realize He meant for us to forgive without limit -- just
as He forgives us.

LUKE 23:33-34 NKJ
33 And when they had come to the place called Calvary, there
they crucified Him, and the criminals, one on the right hand
and the other on the left.
34 Then Jesus said, "Father, forgive them, for they do not know
what they do." And they divided His garments and cast lots.

Jesus set a perfect example of forgiveness for us when He
forgave those who mocked Him and crucified Him. But this kind
of forgiveness is certainly beyond normal human ability or
experience. It takes the power of God to do it. When we are
born again we have access to that power through the love of God
inside us.

32 And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one
another, just as God in Christ also forgave you.

We are commanded to forgive others in the same way God has
forgiven us! Having God's help is necessary to do that.

13 bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if
anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave
you, so you also must do.

It is not optional. If we desire God's blessing and fellowship
-- we must forgive others as He forgave us.

SAY THIS: With God's help, I will forgive.

Saturday, November 03, 2012

Sin's Deception

13 You must warn each other every day, while it is still
"today," so that none of you will be deceived by sin and
hardened against God.

Sin advertises that it will bring happiness, but fails to

Deception's story is that going God's way is too restrictive --
too hard -- and won't lead to happiness. So sin tells you to
throw off restraint and live for the moment -- do whatever
feels right to you with no thought for the future.

The only problem is that it does not work! Sin's promises are

All sin hurts people. So all sin will (eventually) make someone

Can you make yourself happy by making others miserable? No! It
may seem to work for awhile, but in the end it fails.

Don't be deceived! You cannot make yourself happy by hurting

Instead of happiness, sin actually pays out in death.

23 For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is
eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.

Whatever pleasure sin may bring is something very temporary
which lasts for only a short while. Then it brings death!

25 He chose to share the oppression of God's people instead of
enjoying the fleeting pleasures of sin.

Fortunately, there is good news! Jesus came to save us from sin.

21 "And she will bring forth a Son, and you shall call His name
JESUS, for He will save His people from their sins."

The good news is that no matter how deeply sin has trapped you,
Jesus will forgive you and free you!

Jesus is not your enemy -- sin is your enemy. Sin only promises
you happiness, then brings destruction, misery, and pain. Jesus
is your friend who came to set you free from sin.

Jesus frees us not only from the punishment of sin, but also
from the power and control of sin.

When you receive Him, Jesus puts His life and love in your
heart, so you don't have to sin.

People sin because they are afraid of missing out on something
good. All sin is based on fear, which results from not truly
knowing God loves us.

But God does love you! Enough to die for you! So you can be
certain that He does not want to withhold any good thing from

14 But the gateway to life is very narrow and the road is
difficult, and only a few ever find it.

Many people read this verse in Matthew and think of few people
making it to Heaven, but that is not what Jesus said. Life, in
full victory, as God intended, is enjoyed by very few people
during our time on earth. The reason is because they allow
themselves to be deceived by sin.

The road of joyful, wonderful life is difficult. It can be a
struggle to keep from being deceived. But Jesus will help you!
He is the Way! So call on Jesus and trust Him to help you!

SAY THIS: I refuse to let sin deceive me!

Friday, November 02, 2012

Esteem Others Better

3 Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but
in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than

When you start thinking you are better than other people, you
are on dangerous ground. It leads to actions opposite to divine

Be on guard! The Bible warns us, and we should take heed.

Of course it's not just what we think of others that's
important, but how we treat others. However, thoughts always
precede and determine actions. So, we must guard our thoughts.

3 . . . treat one another as more important than yourself.

Yes, every one of us is better in some way(s) than some other
person or persons. But not one of us is superior in every way
to everyone else.

Of even more importance is that we should not value a human
being by their looks, abilities or accomplishments, but by
their value to God. God is the true judge of human worth and He
thinks that person you are tempted to look down upon is
valuable enough to die for.

When you judge someone as not valuable, or judge yourself as
more valuable than they are, you are setting yourself up as a
judge with higher authority than God.

6 But he gives us even more grace to stand against such evil
desires. As the Scriptures say, "God opposes the proud but
favors the humble."

God resists the proud!

Only a fool would want God to oppose them or resist them.
Therefore, only a fool, or an ignorant person, would want to be
proud -- which is thinking you are better than others.

5 Likewise you younger people, submit yourselves to your
elders. Yes, all of you be submissive to one another, and be
clothed with humility, for "God resists the proud, But gives
grace to the humble."

What do you have that was not given to you? Did you create
yourself? So, what do you really have to boast about?

7 For who makes you differ from another? And what do you have
that you did not receive? Now if you did indeed receive it, why
do you boast as if you had not received it?

Instead of being proud, be grateful for all God has blessed you
with. And realize God has blessed you so you can also be a
blessing to others -- for they are important to God, too.

1 PETER 2:17 NLT
17 Respect everyone, and love your Christian brothers and

SAY THIS: I will not fall into the trap of thinking I am better
than others.

Thursday, November 01, 2012

Tell The Truth

25 So stop telling lies. Let us tell our neighbors the truth,
for we are all parts of the same body.

People lie because of fear of loss or pain. They are afraid if
they always tell the truth, things might go badly for them.

So people lie to try to obtain a better result for themselves.
But lies can take you only so far. Truth always prevails in the
end. So a lie that was done in an attempt to help you, will
always end up eventually hurting you instead.

Some might argue that sometimes lies are used to avoid hurting
other's feelings. Like when someone asks, "Do I look old or
fat?" and you tell them "No!" because you want them to feel
good about themselves. But actually you don't want them to
think badly of you for telling them the truth.

I would never suggest that you say anything to put anyone down
and make them feel bad. But you don't have to respond directly
to that type of question, either.

Instead you could answer with something like, "You are a
wonderful person and I love you."

One thing we need to learn is that we are not obligated to
answer every time we are asked a question. Jesus did not!
(Matthew 27:14 for example.) There are times when it is best to
simply say nothing.

As Christians, we may lament how politicians and government
leaders seem to have problems with telling the truth. But we
cannot condemn them without condemning ourselves, if we are
also guilty of sometimes not telling the truth.

We need a revival of truth in our culture. As Christians we
should be people who mean what we say and can be depended on to
tell the truth. We are supposed to be a light to the world
around us, setting a good example.

4 someone who despises those who act wickedly, but who honors
those who honor the LORD; someone who keeps their promise even
when it hurts;

We should always keep our word, if it is at all possible. Even
if it costs us everything we have. If we do find ourselves in a
situation where it is impossible to keep our promise, then we
should apologize to those we have let down.

JOHN 16:13 CEB
13 However, when the Spirit of Truth comes, he will guide you
in all truth. He won't speak on his own, but will say whatever
he hears and will proclaim to you what is to come.

The Spirit of Truth lives in us, so we should be known for our
truthfulness. People should be saying, "You can depend on them.
If they say something, you can count on it being true!"

There should be a clear difference between the children of
light and the children of darkness, the children of God and the
children of the devil.

44 For you are the children of your father the devil, and you
love to do the evil things he does. He was a murderer from the
beginning. He has always hated the truth, because there is no
truth in him. When he lies, it is consistent with his
character; for he is a liar and the father of lies.

Never forget that the devil is the father of lies.

While a lie may tempt with the promise of improving things,
remember that the devil's work results in stealing, killing,
and destruction (John 10:10).

(Some Bible examples seem to indicate that an unselfish lie to
stop evil people from killing an innocent victim is not treated
as a sin. Rahab protecting the Israelite spies (Joshua 2:5),
and the midwives not killing the Israelite baby boys in Egypt
(Exodus 1:15-21) are examples of this. These are extreme and
very rare occurrences, and should not be used as an excuse for
lesser situations.)

SAY THIS: I will tell the truth, or keep quiet.