verse of the day

Friday, 30 September 2011

Not perfection but yieldedness.[ 1 Corinthians 2 v 1- 5 ]

I noticed in my last blog I left out some words in the prayer, sometimes I think I am by my sell buy date. One of the things God has tried to teach me is this, especially in relation to my preaching, I am not there to perform, I am there to minister,there is a big difference between performing and ministering. One of the greatest and most effective evangelist , I know of was a man called W.P. Nicholson ,this man was used mightly in the salvation of thousands of souls in my dear homeland. He had a homely if sometimes vulgar deliverary in his preaching. Speaking of the devil, he said, /The devils a dirty old pig/, I remember hearing him say about someone kissing a person who smoked, he said it was like kissing an old cow/.God used that man in a remarkable way to bring revival to Ulster, my own dear grandmother made a decision for Christ after hearing him preach.I know we should do our best when preaching ,seek to manifest an excellency at all times, true and all that this is, God does not require perfection, but rather a yieldedness to Christ.

A prayer. /Dear God help me to always do my best in my service for You,but dear God help me to realize that it is not by might nor by power, but it is by your Spirit that will make the difference. in Jesus name . Amen . /

Thursday, 29 September 2011

Love God, love man.[Matthew 22 v37-40]

There is a saying which goes ,/the best things in life are free/, I wonder do you agree, and if it is so, what do you consider are the best things in life?. Someone has said every thing has its price, that everyone can be bought, what do you value the most ?. What would you grab if there was a fire?, if a loved one was being held for a ransom, would you be prepared to sell all you had, home, car,etc, to pay the ransom? What do we value the most?,a young man came to Jesus [ Matthew 19 16ff], he wanted eternal life, Jesus told him to keep the commandments,he said that he had kept the commandments,but had he?,he thought he had. but he had not, for the commandments is fulfilled by loving God with all our hearts, with all our souls, and with all our minds, secondly,to love our neighbour as ourselves[ Matthew 22v 37-40 ]And so our Saviour reveals his true state of heart, with a challenge, to sell all he had and give to the poor. At that a great sadness filled that young man, his true god was revealed, his love of money,not a love for God or man. Instead of following Jesus , he trusted in what he loved the most,and in doing so he lost his soul.
A prayer /Dear God, help us to see that nothing is more important than You, if we are to be
saved it must be Jesus, before anything else. Amen./

Wednesday, 28 September 2011

Giving. [ James 2 v 14 -17 ]

I have just looked at my mail one of the letters was a plea for financial support, I dont mind such letters I dont usually respond to then.There are so many needs in the world,even going to a local church, brings demands on Christians to give, so what can one do? Well, I believe in giving, the word of God challenges us to be generous [Matthew 5 v42 /10v 8/ Luke 6 v 38/]First of all we should see the importance of giving, we are not under any law as regards giving other than the law of love. Giving to the poor is very important,those who oppress or neglect the poor,will be dealt with, and that severely by a God of justice. It is not a sin to be rich,but it is a sin to not use your riches to help others, being rich one would think should give unto us a generous spirit.Yet sad to say it appears to create a selfish and oppressive attitude towards the poor, a feeling that the poor are lazy, and undeserving.P.Yancey mentions the following about money,/ How did you get it?/What are you doing with it?[are you hoarding it? exploiting others? wasting it on needless luxuries?/ what is it doing to you?/.You may say I am not rich, and so use this excuse to not give to others, give out of your smallness ,and you will be a blessing, and be blessed.
A Prayer / Dear God help us not to trust in uncertain riches,help us to see that we all are called
upon to be generous, to those in need, in Jesus name . Amen ./

Tuesday, 27 September 2011

Earthern vessels. [ Jeremiah 1 v 6-8 ]

It was Tolstoy who said,/ Dont judge Gods holy ideals by my inability to meet. Dont judge Christ by those of us who imperfectly bear His name/. I know what he means,how often I have misrepresented my Saviour,on a personal level my secret dread is that I will do something that will cause people to judge my God and Saviour because of me. Yet if we did live a perfect holy life,would the non Christian accept Christ?I dont know, some may, but then they may do to me what they did to Jesus. Paul writes of Christians as earthen vessels [2 Corinthians 4 v7 ], yes the best of Christians are but men, imperfect men. William Barclay wrote,/ However great a Christian he is he is still a mortal man, still the victim of circumstances, still subject to the chances and changes of life, still a mortal body with all that body,s weakness and pain/. But we must not finish there ,yes we are weak earthen vessels,but as we are reminded,there is a glory within us, even Christ, and through Him we can make a difference,we can be used to bring glory to our Saviour ,so let us not despair,or shrink back from living and serving our Saviour.
A prayer / Dear God use me,use even me, inspite of my weakness,I am only an earthern
vessel, fill me with thy Spirit, in Jesus name. Amen .

Monday, 26 September 2011

The backslider. [ Hosea 14 v 4 ]

The book of Galations was written by the apostle Paul to Christians, who were in danger of going back into leagalisim, to live under the law,you can sense the pain and frustration Paul is feeling as regards this. In 3 v1 we have him writing,O foolish Galations, who hath bewitched you, that ye should not obey the truth. It is such a sad thing when people go back from following Christ, I have seen it happen many, times,I remember a chap many years ago he was a bright Christian, and then he backslid, I remember talking to him reasoning with him,and as I spoke to him, I started to cry. It is said that the angels rejoice over one sinner that repenteth ,[Luke 15 v 7 ], but I wonder do they shed a tear ,when that same person turns away. Again Paul asks the question, ye did run well ,who did hinder you,that ye should not obey the truth?[5 v7 ]Is the backslider lost?, if they were trully Christs, no,but it appears to me that they are in a very precarious position, no one should presume on the mercy of God. Let us pray for those who once ran well, and have gone back, that they may return to the Lord, who still loves them.
I,ve wandered far away from God,
Now Im coming home,
The paths of sin too long I,ve trod,
Lord Im coming home.
A prayer /Dear God we bring to You the backsliders, those who once followed You,we pause
and mention their names to You,have mercy and restore them to Yourself, in Jesus
name Amen.

Sunday, 25 September 2011

I am a pilgrim. [ Hebrews 11 v 12 -16 ]

I was speaking recently on Psalm 84, it is a Psalm for those pilgrims, going up to Jerusalem to worship,they would travel from all over Israel to get there. Verse 6 , reads/, Who passing through the valley of Baca, make it a well, the rain also maketh the pools./ As these pilgrims travel to Jerusalem, they would pass through ,some sterile gloomy place, A. Boner calls the valley of Baca,a valley of tear shrubs,a valley of lamentation. Going on a pilgrimage was not all plain sailing. It is in 1 Peter 2 v11, we are reminded that we are strangers and pilgrims in this world, the Message put it like this ,/This world is not our home/, now as we travel to heaven ,we will like pilgrims of old, pass through hostile territory,some stirile and gloomy places, and like them we must look to God to bring us through, and we must seek for the grace to carry on to the end.In Hebrews 11v13 ff we have more pilgrims , people like Abraham, and this is what it says about them. /Each one of these people of faith died not yet having in hand what was promised, but still believing. How did they do it?. They saw it way off in the distance, waved their greeting, and acepted the fact that they were transients in this world. People who live this way make it plain that are looking for their true home. If they were homesick for the old country, they could have gone back any time they wanted. But they were after a far better country than that- heaven country. You can see why God is so proud of them, and has a City waiting for them. [The Message ] This world is not my home, Im just a passing through,
My treasures are laid up somewhere beyond the blue.
[J. W. Peterson ],
A prayer / Dear God help us not to get to cosy here, help us to live in light of eternity, in Jesus
name. Amen ]

Gods loving sovereign power. [Jeremiah 31 v 3 ]

If God is not sovereign,God is not God,so wrote R.C.Sproul ,I often mention the sovereignty of God,often preach on it,because it is very,important. Important for each child of God to see beyond their difficult circumstances,beyond their tears,beyond the powers that be, beyond the chaos in the financial world. We continually need to remind ourselves that Gods word declares that He reigns and rules, and overrules in all the events of life.Those men and women in Gods word were often faced with life threatening situations, consider David, Daniel,Esther,often times the nation of Israel were conquerored and exiled. I read of so many dear Christians who are suffering untold misery at the hands of religious fanaticism ,and evil goverments,life for many is very painful. It could be that you are experencing undeserved suffering, life can be very unfair, but God is fair,and He is sovereign, and He would say to you, hold on my child joy cometh in the morning, so wrote David[Psalm 30 v5 ].We may not understand the here and now but God does,and at the center of His plans is His people,whom He loves,with an indescribable intensity.a love that would never cause His child an needless tear.
In all His holy, sovereign will,
He is I daily find,
Too wise to be mistaken still,
Too good to be unkind.
Though I cannot see His goings see,
Nor all His footsteps find,
Too wise to be mistaken, He,
Too good be unkind.
Hereafter He will make me know
And I shall surely find,
He was to wise to err, and O,
Too good to be unkind.
A prayer. /Dear God help us to trust in your loving sovereign power , in Jesus name. Amen ]

Friday, 23 September 2011

Nothing lasts for long. [Psalm 90 ]

Im suffering empty nest syndrome, so wrote Tom Utley in one of our national newspapers,it is the effect of the last of his four chidren leaving home,I am sure many people suffer from this.He went on to descrlbe how it felt as his wife and him drove away from university, having just said goodbye to their son, his wife put on a CD the first one that came to hand, it was by,Joni Mitchell,s Chinese Cafe, the words went,
With the kids nearly grown and gone
Grown so fast,
Like the turn of a page,
We look like our mothers did now,
When we were those kids age,
Nothing lasts for long,
Nothing lasts for long,
Nothing lasts for long.
It is true nothing lasts for long,in Psalm 90 we are reminded of the brevity of life [v10 ] , and then we are told,/So teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom/. So many live for the hear and now,they dont listen to their hearts,only to their heads,and the fact of the matter is head knowledge alone is not enough.The words of that old Psalm reminds us that nothing lasts for long, in the light of this reality,we need trully to be wise. To seek the Lord Jesus while He may be found, and to call on Him while there is still time,yes nothing lasts for long as regards this life, but as to the next life, we all possess a soul that will never die,so let us be wise and trust Jesus to save us ,the alternative is grim.
A prayer /Dear God help us to grasp the reality that as to this life nothing lasts for ever,but as to eternity thats a different story, help us to accept Christ as our Saviour,and to live for Him, in Jesus name we ask this. Amen.

Thursday, 22 September 2011

The Sabbath. [ Romans 14 ]

I have read on the inter-net that one of Scotlands rugby team, Euan Murry is refusing to play on Sunday,it reminds me of a certain other Scots man who did a similar thing, his name was Eric Liddel. Eric also played Rugby and of course was a fine runner, winning a gold medal in the 400m. I wonder what you think about this? I personally respect them both, I am not a strict Sabbatarian, Euan like Eric is following his conscience,according as he understands the word of God. Let every man be fully persuaded in their own mind so declares Romans 14 v 5 .I try not to undermind anybodies Christians faith, I respect what this dear brother is doing, and pray that through his stand opportunities may arise to witness about Jesus, who is our perfect Sabbath rest.[ Matthew 11 v28 ]
Standing by a purpose true,
Heeding God,s command,
Honour them, the faithul few,
All hail to Daniels band.
Dare to be a Daniel,
Dare to stand alone.
Dare to have a purpose firm.
Dare to make it known.
A prayer / Dear God help Euan as he takes his stand, help us all to be people of Biblical
conviction, in Jesus name. Amen./

Wednesday, 21 September 2011

A mere adjective. [ John 1 v 29 ]

In a recent book by P. Yancey,he writes of what C. S. Lewis said,/We writers are not nouns, we are mere adjectives, pointing to the great noun of truth/, and Philip goes on to say,/ thousands have come to know and love that Noun including me/.I am sure you know who they are writing about, well we read in John 1 v29, these words spoken by John the baptist,/ Beohld the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world/.John was but and adjective pointing to the great noun of truth, Jesus. Today have I been an adjective pointing to the great noun of truth?, I so often feel I am not a good adjective, I point people not to Jesus but to other adjectives, and if I am doing that, then I am failing,to do what I should be doing. Our words must be adjectives, likewise our actions, and our attitudes.our whole lives must be one big adjective, pointing others to the great noun of Truth, even Jesus.
It,s all about You Jesus,
And all this is for You,
For Your glory and Your fame,
It,s not about me,
As if You should do things my way,
You alone are God,
And I surrender to Your ways.
[Paul Oakley ]
A prayer /Dear Saviour help us to be adjectives pointing others to You. Amen /

Tuesday, 20 September 2011

Rewards. [ 1 Corinthians 3 v 11 - 15 ]

I recieved flowers today, not from my wife, but from a grateful mother,whose son I helped, I was also given a compliment from one of my clients.It is nice to recieve these things, I dont just work for a wage, although it is important, I trully like my job, I see it as a ministry God has given me. The scripture says do all to the glory of God, and if we do then of the Lord we will recieve a reward.In the last chapter of Revelation 22v12, we read our Lord declaring, behold ,I come quickly, and my reward is with Me. It is to recieve thanks from people, yet how more wonderful to recieve from our Saviour ,His reward , and well done, a reward that is described as incorruptible. [1 Corinthians 9 v25 ]. Eternal life is a free gift [Romans 6 v23 ] but as we serve our Lord,here ,we will be rewarded, even the smallest of things we do for another, will be rewarded [Matthew 10 v 42 ]. There are many times one may not recieve any thanks from those we serve, what we do, may go unnoticed ,unappreciated ,dont fret, dont worry,your Saviour and Lord in a coming day, will declare, well done good and faithful servant.
Stand up, stand up for Jesus,
The strife will not be long,
This day the noise of battle,
The next the victors song.
To him that overcometh,
A crown of life shall be,
He with the King of glory,
Shall reign eternally.
[G. Duffield]
A prayer. /Dear God help us serve you,to work for You,till that day when by Your grace
we recieve Your well done, we ask this in the name and for sake of Jesus. Amen/

Monday, 19 September 2011

Pray for them.[ James 5 v 16 - 18 ]

I remember a dear Christian lady who prayed much,sometimes I would ask her to pray for someone and , she would get annoyed if I would not devulge the persons name. We dont need to know all the details to pray,prayer is not an excuse to be a busy body,nor is it an excuse to satisfy our curiosity.We must respect peoples privacy,we live in a time when privacy is not respected, when cameras are everwhere, everyone is fair game, no matter how much this affects them,or their families. Everything has to be exposed,and it is,but should it be?,I dont think so,even if the person has acted foolishly, I am glad people dont know about the things I got up to in my youth.Thankfully they never will, you see the reason I came to Christ was because I was a sinner. And even as a Christian, as a father or husband, I regret some things I have done, only God knows and thats the way it should be.Although God does know ,He will keep it to Himself ,because I confessed my failures, all the wrongs I have ever committed, He has forgiven me.So coming back to prayer ,lets us begin to pray for those whose apparent wrongs have been exposed, people who have acted wrongly,or have appeared to act wrongly, let us pray not as their judges, but as those who are just as human as they are.
Lord teach us how to pray aright,
With reverance and with fear,
Though dust and ashes in Thy sight,
We may,we must draw near.
[James Montgomery ]


Sunday, 18 September 2011

Grant me. [Philippians 4 v 8 - 13 ]

I noticed that a few trees leaves are beginning to change , you see I love the summer,and so I ask the question, why can it not be summer all the year round?. I know it cant be so ,I suppose that is why people move to sunnier climes, but then I love this country, I have have been for holidays in different countries, but I do like coming home.In the end wishing will not make any difference, reminds me of that prayer ,which is good to be reminded of, it is called the serenity prayer.
God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change,
Courage to change the things I can,
And wisdom to know the difference.

Love one another. [ John 13 v 34-35 ]

I had the privilege many years ago of attending Bible college,my fellow students came from different Christian traditions,but that never was a problem,we were one in Christ.Each student knew Christ personally as their Saviour,believed the Bible to be the word of God, the fact that some were Baptists,Anglican,Pentecostal,etc,did not make any difference to us,we studied and played together,and most went on to serve God in full time Christian ministry. I was reminded of this recently when a friend of mine who is reformed in doctrine is becoming a member of a church which is not reformed. Our Lord prayed that His followers may be one[ John 17 v11],and that we should love one another[John 13 v34 -35 ]. It seems to me we can become like those early Chistians in Corinth [2 Corinthians 3],and forget that we are Christians first and foremost. So today think kindly on those who are true Christians,and yet differ with you on churh goverment,baptisim,prophecy,we can differ in all these things , but if we are evangelical and love Jesus then let us accept each other.
Blest be the tie that binds,
Our hearts in Christian love.
The fellowship kindred minds,
Is like to that above.
[J . Fawcett ]
A Prayer. / Dear Lord Jesus help us to love those who differ from us in secondary things,and yet
trully love You. Amen /

Saturday, 17 September 2011

Is God pleased with us?. [ Psalm 78 v 38-39 ]

There are some people one can never please, you try your best, but it is never enough, and it is never good enough.I wonder do we not think that about God ,that He looks upon us with a scowl, and no matter what we do we cannot please Him.Now of course God is not pleased when we sin, when we are mean,or unloving,no parent is happy when their children disobey them,and God our heavenly parent is no different.In Psalm 78v39 we read how God remembers that we are flesh, yes as Christians we are children of God, but we are still in this body of flesh,and God knows and understands,that we are imperfect and still loves us.I have a drawing hanging up in my home sent to me from my grandchild, it will never get into the Tates gallery, but I appreciate it, and am pleased with with my grandchilds effort. I like to think that God our Father looks on His childrens weak efforts, and is pleased with their efforts and with them as people.In Jesus we are no longer living under a cloud of condemnation, not looked upon with a scowl, but a heavenly Fathers smile.Today as we try to live for Jesus, and seek to love Him yes inperfectly,our Father in heaven is pleased with us.
A prayer. /Dear God we praise for the grace that saves us,we thank You for the fact that You love us and are pleased with as we seek to serve and love You,in Jesus name .Amen.

Friday, 16 September 2011

God moves in a mysterious way. [Romans 8 v28 av ]

Much as I love many of the modern songs, I still love the old hymns,have I a favourite? well I am not sure, there is one that means a lot to me, written by that great poet William Cowper ,and it is this one, /God moves in a mysterious way/. The theme of this hymn is the sovereignty of God, and the verse I would put over this hymn is Romans 8 v28,again I love this in the AV,/And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God,to them who are the called according to His purpose/. Here is this hymn in full , William suffered from mental illness ,he attempted suicide , was put into an insane institute , and yet inspite of all this he wrote these wonderful words.
God moves in a mysterious way
His wonders to perform,
He plants His footsteps in the sea ,
And rides upon the storm.

Deep in unfathomable mines,
Of never failing skill
He treasures up His bright designs,
And works His sovereign will.

Ye fearful saints ,fresh courage take,
The clouds ye so much dread,,
Are big with mercy , and shall break
In blessings on your head.

Judge not the Lord by feeble sense,
But trust Him for His grace,
Behind a frowning providence,
He hides a smiling face.

His purposes will ripen fast,
Unfolding every hour,
The bud may have a bitter taste,
But sweet will be flower.

Blind unbelief is sure to err,
And scan His works in vain,
God is His own interpreter,
And He will make it plain.
A prayer. / Dear God help us to trust in Your sovereign providence ,and purposes in our lives
in Jesus name. Amen /

Thursday, 15 September 2011

And I am glad.[ Romans 12 v 1-2]

Since I purchased my laptop I have printed my thought for today, the evening before ,and then I publish it the next day,it may appear to be a day behind but it is not. I take seriously what I do .I have wanted to publish a thought for the day, since early on in my Christian life and since I got a PC I have been able to this, mybe this is an example of Psalm 37v4 ,/ Delight thyself also in the Lord, and He shall give thee the desires of thine heart/.I wanted also to be a missionary but that as yet ,has not happened,mybe it will, but then mybe it will not, it must always be ,Gods will not ours, and if He withholds something from us ,it is for the best. David had a desire to build a temple but he was not given that task, it was instead given to his son Solomon, I have a son who is serving God full time,it appears to me like David my desire is being fulfilled in him.
God holds the key to all unknown,
And I am glad,
If other hands should hold the key ,
Or if He trusted it to me ,
I might be sad.
Enough ,this covers all my wants
And so I rest,
For what I cannot, He can see,
And in His care I saved shall be,
For ever blest.
[Joseph Parker ]
A prayer / Dear God I commit all my ways into Your hands and submit my will
to Your perfect will ,in Jesus name Amen ./

Tuesday, 13 September 2011

All is well.[ Hebrews 13 v 5 - 8 ]

As I do my blog I am listening to some nice music, I am in my living room sitting in a comfortable chair ,I am blest in so many ways ,but of course in my life there are also difficulties. One of the most important things in my life is not to let the difficulties take over ,which they can so easily.I am reminded of David in a time of great diffilculties ,how he encouraged himself in the Lord [ 1 Samuel 30 v 6 ] . George Swinnock wrote, /A Christian in his/her saddest condition can enjoy God as their portion/,consider those words,especially if you are going through a trial. No one can rob us of Him, it is the apostle who wrote, / For I am persuaded , that neither death, nor life, nor principalities,, nor powers,nor things present, nor thing to come, Nor height, nor depth,nor any other creature, shall be able to seperate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. [ Romans 8 v 38-39 ]/Let us listen to that still small voice of Jesus ,let His voice penetrate to the very core of our being,let His heart speak to our hearts,let not your heart be troubled, I am with you,fear not, fret not, all will be well, you are the apple of my eye, and I love you.
Never a weakness that He doth not feel,
Never a sickness that He cannot heal,
Monment by moment,in woe or in weal,
Jesus ,my Saviour,abides with me still.
A prayer. /Dear God help us not to give into despair or fear, help us today to rest in Your
presence and love, in Jesus name. Amen.

Monday, 12 September 2011

Whorship only God. [ Exodus 20 v 1 - 6 ]

One final thought on the bronze serpent in Numbers 21, and it is to the reign of that godly king Hezekiah we turn,in 2 Kings 18. Now Hezekiah sought to turn the people back to God,he had those things which the people worshipped that where contrary to Gods word destroyed. Among those things was the bronze serpent and it had become an object of worship, Hezekiah had it destroyed, and rightly so. This object was never meant to become an object of worship, we can point at one group of the Christian church,were its members are inclined to worship so called sacred objects, and so called saints, and dear Mary. But we all must be careful of making any person, place or thing an object of worship,we must cast down anything, yes anything that is contrary to Gods word, and worship only God.
The dearest idol I have known,
what,er that idol be,
help me to tear it fromThy throne,
and worship only Thee.
[William Cowper]
A prayer / Dear God help us to worship only You,reveal to us those things that have become
idols,help us to destroy them, in Jesus name. Amen/

Sunday, 11 September 2011

Look and live [. John 3 v 14- 15 ]

The people had sinned ,God punished them,the result many of the people died,the people confess their sins , God shows mercy, by providing a means whereby those bitten by the serpents, would be healed.He told them to make a bronze serpent and put it on a pole, if the people who were bitten looked they would be healed.Why did God not just heal those people? ,He could have, but God wanted them to exercise faith, without faith we cannot please God, so they had to look if they were going to be healed. Now this all has a deeper and a more meaningful application,which our Saviour reveals in John 3 v 14- 15, And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up. That whosoever believeth in Him, should not perish, but have eternal life. We are all suffering from a great sickness , sin ,which has terrible consequences, Hell is very serious, unless sin is dealt with, that is were we would be going. Yet as Jesus said, God has provided a way for the sin to be dealt with, as we see in John 3 v 14- 15. all that is required is for sinners is to look to Jesus and live.
Look and live, my brother, live
Look to Jesus, now and live,
Tis recorded in his word,hallelujah,
It is only that you look and live.
[ W. A. Ogden ]
A prayer. [We thank You Father that we can be saved simply by that look of faith
in Jesus Thy dear Son. Amen ]

Saturday, 10 September 2011

Mercy. [Psalm 23 v 6 ]

We continue to consider Numbers21 v4 ff ,the firey serpents,that event in which God had to chastise His people, in Hebrews 3,we read how the nation constantly, grieved God. God threatened to wipe them out,and to raise up a new nation through Moses [Exodus 32 v 10 ]'God never did destroy the nation ,why ?,because of His love for them, and because He is merciful. In my times of private prayer the one thing I am asking of God continually, is mercy for myself, and others . Over the ark in which dwelt the tablets with the law written on them, was the mercy seat, if it was just us, and Gods law, we would not stand a chance,we would be condenmed, to a lost eternity, but through Jesus we recieve mercy.[ Hebrews 4 v16 ] So it was, God had mercy on Israel , he did not allow them to be wiped out, and provided a means to heal and save them,tomorrow we will consider the significance of what He did,but for now let us praise God for His mercy which endures for ever.
That great hymn writer Isaac Watts wrote. Give to our God eternal praise,
Mercy and truth are all His ways
Wonders of grace to God belong
Repeat His mercies in your song.

He sent His Son with power to save
From guilt, and darkness, and the grave,
Wonders of grace to God belong,
Repeat His mercies in your song.

Through this vain world He guides our feet,
And leads us to His heavenly seat,
His mercies shall for ever endure,
When this vain world shall be no more.
A prayer
/Dear God we praise You for Your continual mercy in Jesus name Amen /

Friday, 9 September 2011

Moses prayed [1 Timothy 2 v 5 ]

And Moses prayed for the people [ Numbers 21 v 7 ] at this time Moses was the one who mediated for the people, it was a legitimate role at that time ,for him. The wonder of the new covenant is that every believer can freely come to God ,and be heard,there is no special priesthood,for every believer is a priest[ 1 Peter 2 v9 ] Does that mean we cannot pray for others? of course we can pray for others, and indeed we are exhorted to [1 Timothy 2 v1-3], consider what that means. Our interceding on behalf of others can touch the heart of our loving heavenly Father,who will answer,in wonderful ways. Eternity will reveal what our prayers have accomplished,someone was saved,someone was delivered, someone was healed,some need was met,some burden lifted,and all because we prayed. We may not be a Moses, so what, it is faith that God honours, God is no respecter of persons, but He loves those who honour Him, so pray for others dear child of God with faith and confidence in the name of Jesus.
John Newton wrote /Come my soul, thy suit prepare,
Jesus loves to answer prayer,
He Himself has bid thee pray,
Therefore will not say thee nay.
Thou art coming to a King,
Large petitions with thee bring.
For His grace and power are such
None can ever ask too much.
A prayer.
Dear God we thank You, that You hear and are pleased to answer our prayers
through Jesus Your dear Son . Amen.

Thursday, 8 September 2011

Discipline . [ Hebrews 12 v 5 -13 ]

In Proverbs 3v 11- 12 we read ,/My son, despise not the chastening of the Lord, neither be weary of His correction. For whom the Lord loveth He correcteth,even as a father the son in whom he delighteth/. Why did God send firey serpents to bite the people and even cause some to die ?, because He loved them, yes He did. An undisciplined child is a spoilt child, an unpleasant child, only as that child is dealt with, do they begin to realise what is right and whats wrong, whats acceptable and whats unacceptable. God in sending firey sepents was disciplining them, and so it would continue, a loving father does not give up on his children. Are you experiencing discipline from God your father?well dont think He does not love you, it evidence that He loves you [Hebrews 12 v8 ] He will perfect that which concerneth us, how? , by disciplining us.

A.A. Pollard wrote / Have Thine own way Lord
Have Thine own way.
Thou art the Potter,
I am the clay
Mould me and make me,
After Thy will
While I am waiting
Yielded and still.
A prayer
Dear Lord forgive our foolish ways, grant us grace to accept Thy loving discipline
in Jesus name. Amen.

Wednesday, 7 September 2011

Let us learn. [ Deuteronomy 14 v 21 - 23 ]

Continuing on in Numbers 21,we read that God punished the people by sending firey serpents among them , the term firey , W . Riggans relates to the burning sensation of the venom in the body of those the serpents bit'. As a result of being bitten many of the people died,this came about because the people threw of restraint, and the fear of the Lord. What is the fear of the Lord? , to me it appears to mean a showing of reverance, and it seems to me when you act like Israel did you cross a line, that, yes, is dangerous . I believe when it comes to God we must be very careful,God we are told is a consuming fire [Hebrews 12 v29 ]. Time after time Israel had to be taught the fear of God, consider the words of Ecclesiastes 5 v 7, we read ,/ but fear thou God /, do it voluntary or be taught it ,which is usually a very painful experience. The vast majority of people have no fear of God [Romans 3 v 18 ], but one day they will fear [Revelation 6 v 15 -17 ] The fear of the Lord we are told is to hate evil [Proverbs 8v13 ], for if we embrace evil then we will experience Gods just punishment. God is the master teacher , what does every teacher require of his pupils?, to learn ,in Deuteronomy 14 v23 , God the great teacher wants His people to learn the fear of the Lord

A prayer / Dear God we love you and yet we reverance You with a godly fear,in Jesus name Amen /

Tuesday, 6 September 2011

A short spirit and a short soul.[ Psalm 139 v 23- 24 ]

In Numbers 21 v 4-9 we have according to Jewish tradition the last and the worst of Israel,s apostasies in the wilderness. It all came about because the people were discouraged, Walter Riggans comments,/They had been rejected by the kings of Edom and Arad, and had lost their High Priest Aaron./ So they spake against God and Moses they had a list of complints ,they let a wrong spirit enter into them. It is W R who describes their condition in two ways , having a short spirit, and a short soul. Having a short spirit, means being impatient, unable to keep one,s temper in check, a loosing of self discipline, it is the opposite of long suffering. Having a short soul means being thoroughly discouraged, feeling so low they forgot all about Gods goodness to them, He had delivered them from cruel bondage, provided for them, and protected them. I am sure we can identify with what happened to Israel, and what they did, and who is to say we may have acted like they did. Let us read and learn, what is the Holy Spirit is saying to you, and me, as we read this, have we let todays difficuties drive us and control us, to the point that we are speaking against God and His leaders, let us draw back from this wrong spirit, and ask God to renew within us a right spirit.
Be still, my heart, these anxious cares
To thee are burdens, thorns and snares,
They cast dishonour on the Lord
And contradict His gracious word.

Though rough and thorny be the road,
It leads thee home apace to God,
Then count thy present trials small,
For Heaven will make amends for all.
[J Newton ]
A prayer [Dear God in the midst of trials grant us grace to glorify Thee, in Jesus name. Amen ]

Monday, 5 September 2011

No hedging our bets.[ Matthew 8 18 -22 ]

A certain king Raedwald of East Anglia, [ 600- 624 ] was baptised as a Christian, but he still kept much of his pagan ways and worship. In 1939 a treasure trove was found with a mix of pagan and Chistian artifacts, and they are thought to belong to king Raedwald, the historian comments, /he continued to hedge his bets/. It is like what we read of in 2 Kings 17 v 33. /They feared the Lord, and served their own gods,/in other words they were hedging their bets,in gambling one can put on a bet , each way.If we are going to be saved we cannot hedge our bets, we must trust in Christ alone.And if we going to follow Jesus,then we cannot hedge our bets, Jesus says follow me. The call of Jesus to us is to follow Him, and Him alone , it may appear riskey, but be assured it will be for the best. Jesus if I could put it with reverance Jesus is a sure thing ,when we risk all on Christ,we will descover that we are safe and secure .

Mary J Walker wrote. Jesus I will trust Thee
Trust Thee with my soul.

A prayer [Dear Lord Jesus grant us the grace to be singleminded
and to not hedge our bets. Amen ]

Sunday, 4 September 2011

Hasty decisions.[ Joshua 9 v14 ]

Isaiah 28 v16 declares, /He that believeth shall not make haste/,earlier in the day we were in a store and looking at computors, and after listening to a nice young sales person,I said we will think about it.It is so easy to make hasty decisions and find out later one has made the wrong decision,I am sure we have all done this. The thought of making a hasty decision implies unthought out decisions, marrying in haste and repenting at leisure, is an old saying,that bears a lot of truth. Yes there are times we need to make quick decisions ,to get out of trouble, but hasty decisions can land us in trouble. We make hasty decisions when we are afraid,in a crisis, or emotionally unstable, Psalm 46 v10 reminds us that there is a more excellant way, /Be still and know that I am God/,that means waiting on God, for His leading and guidance, and to be quitely confident in God.Our Saviour was never rushed into a hasty decision, at all times He waited and moved, in God His Fathers timing [, John11 v 6] , so let us heed the words of Isaiah 28 v16,/He that believeth shall not make haste./

A Prayer [ Help us oh God to be controlled and guided by Your Holy Spirit in all our decisions in Jesus name. Amen. ]

Saturday, 3 September 2011

Only Jesus [ John 14 v 6 ]

Today I witnessed to a man, about trusting Jesus, but as usual he said the same old thing how he would trust in his goodness and in a God of love. Now we have been thinking about Gods perfect plan, as the only plan God will accept,in Matthew 22v 11-14 we have a parable of the guest who neglected to wear the garment provided for him by the king, the result was he was cast out into outer darkness. People must take serious that only Gods solution will cause them to be accepted by a Holy God, if we fail to accept it , or as most people do, refuse to accept it, like that man I witnessed to today, then make no mistake, they will not be accepted. Gods perfect plan removes sin and clothes us with Christs righteousness[ 1 Corinthians 1 v 30] ,and so enables God to have a personal relationship with the crown of His creation.

N.L. Von Zinzendorf wrote the following.
Jesus Thy blood and righteousness,
My beauty are, my glorious dress,
Midst flaming worlds, in these arrayed,
With joy shall I left up my head.

This spotless robe the same appears,
When ruined nature sinks in years,
No age can change its glorious hue,
The robe of Christ is ever new.

Prayer [ Dear God help us to cease from self ,and trust Your perfect plan for our salvation ,
Jesus Your perfect Son. Amen ]

Friday, 2 September 2011

Gods perfect plan. [ John 3 v16 ]

We continue to consider, God the Holy One, and man the sinful one,this created a terrible dilemma,for God, for I believe God created man in order to have fellowship with Him. Because of sin, true and meaning or lasting fellowship could not take place, and yet God still desired it.Before the problem could be resolved thousands of years must pass,and all the time God was pursuing man. Although mankind messed things up time and time again, and although God had to deal with mankind, He never give up on man, or stopped loving them. Inspite of mans condition and sinful behaviour, God had a plan, a perfect plan so audacious ,so beyond anything that man could have thought up.This perfect plan,would be accomplished by the only perfect man, Jesus,and so it came to pass, it took place on a cross ,and on that cross God was reconciling the world unto Himself [2 Corinthians 5 v 19 ], we will consider this further next time. [ Dear God we praise You for the wisdom , the mercy, and the love manifested, in Your perfect plan of salvation, in Jesus name. Amen ]

Thursday, 1 September 2011

The Holy one. [ Isaiah 6 v1 - 8 ]

One of the great themes in the book of Isaiah is the holiness of God, A Motyer says,/ The whole of the Isaianic literature has a theology of holiness. The Holy one of Israel which occurs 25 times in Isaiah as compared to 7 times in the remainder of the O T ./The idea of holiness is I believe very hard for us to appreciate, in fact most people dont ,we are conditioned to accept moral imperfection, and we accept that nothing ,and nobodys perfect, oh yes we get shocked at certain things like child abuse,or some awful crime,but we fail to appreciate ,a holy God. Why does the book of Isaiah,put such importance on holiness?.Also why does he also emphasize mans sinfulness[ cp......1v 5-6. v18/ 6 v 5 /9 v 13ff/ 27 v9/29v13 /33v14/40 v 18-20 /47 v 10/,there are many more places in Isaiah, that stress mans sinfulness. So we have the Holy one , and man the sinful one,what is there to be done?, we will consider this next time. [ We come to you the Holy one, this fills us with dread, for we are sinful , help us to appreciate these truths, in Jesus name. Amen ]