verse of the day

Monday, 31 December 2012

Forget it. [Philippians 3 v 13-14 ]

This is the last day of 2012 ,how do you feel? relieved ,exhausted,glad,grateful,I wonder are you old enough to remember the old vinyl records,LPs,I have got rid of mine.  You placed the record on a turn table then placed the arm of the record player unto the record ,on that arm was a needle later called a stylus.This needle went into grooves in the record and from that the sound was heard .There was only one problem,no matter how careful one was,the surface of the record became damaged, and the needle would become stuck in the one groove and so you would have the same words ,repeated again and again.Listen none of us should, or need to be stuck in  the groove of 2012,or2011 and so on,if so,we are only inviting pain and trouble into our lives.Israel was delivered from slavery in Egypt,by all accounts they should have been free,but they were not,because they continually looked back and even at times wanted to go back. I believe the most important words for all of us to take to heart , are the words of the apostle Paul in Philippians 3v13,/Forgetting those things which are behind/,no matter how successful, on unsuccessful the past has been, forget it,no matter how painful it has been, forget it,Gods will for all of us is to not be held captive by our past.
A  prayer...../ Dear God free us from being stuck in the groove of our past, help us to forget those things that stop us from moving on, in Jesus name Amen/

Sunday, 30 December 2012

Smoking. [ Mark 10 v 51 ]

Soon  we are going to see anti smoking adverts,it will show tumours forming in the cigarette the person is smoking.It is a very dramatic advert illustrating the awful dangers in smoking, yet people will keep on smoking,the question is why?,yet do we need a why?,is it not just enough that it has become so obvious that smoking is playing with fire,is it really worth the risk?. I am 68 years of age,and when I was a wee boy I started smoking,I remember the principal of my school,spotting a friend and I smoking as we walked to school,and when we arrived at school,being called into his office , and after a short lecture,we were caned.I don't think it was a health issue ,it was because we had let down the school. It didn't stop us smoking, I don't think we wanted to give up,and at that stage,there was no evidence to show the dangers of smoking. I continued on smoking, until I was 20 years of age, and then I was restored to the Lord. It was considered a wrong thing to smoke,so by Gods grace I was able to quit the habit,saving my health,and saving me money.As I look back I am so grateful to my Saviour for not only helping me to ,stop smoking, but also for not going back to it.We all can become hooked to so many things,things we would be better with out,I believe there is victory in Jesus,He who saved us can free us,that is if we want to be free.
A   prayer...../Dear God we thank You that Your dear Son Jesus died not only that our sins may be forgiven,but also died to break the power of sin in our lives. Amen /

Saturday, 29 December 2012

Giving evil a foothold. [ Matthew 26 v33/ 69-75]

I heard someone say  that evil is just looking for a foothold,I wonder what you think of that?, is it true?, I think so. As I  read history so many evil people have waited and looked for a foothold, and unfortunately they succeeded.What a lot of pain and suffering  the world could have escaped if those evil leader had not managed to get a foothold. We all need to be on our guard, if we  waver there is every chance that evil will get a foothold,we all need to be vigilant.Our Saviour said,watch ye and pray, lest ye enter into temptation.The spirit truly is ready, but the flesh is weak [Mark 14 v38] In Pilgrims progress, Christian and Hopeful took what they believed the right way because it appeared the easiest way,and they fell into the clutches of Giant despair,who abused them and would have killed them. Let none of us be fooled by the easiest way,we are told that the way that we have to go is a way of tribulation[Acts 14v22]. The devil may go about like a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour[1 Peter 5 v8],but he can also translate himself into an angel of light[2 Corinthians11v14 ]. So the need is for vigilance,to be on our guard ,to have no confidence in the flesh for the arm of flesh shall fail us,let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he falls[ 1 Corinthians 10 v12]. Let us not give evil a foothold, for if we do, the consequences will be dire.
A  prayer......../ Dear God  help us not to give evil a foothold in Jesus name Amen/

Friday, 28 December 2012

Living with brokenness. [ Ephesians 2 v 13- 19 ]

I read  that what a lot of children wanted for Christmas was a father, I remember a person who longed for a relationship, with his mother,who had given him away to her sister to bring up,she never made any effort to be a mother,this affected him dreadfully. I was told by one of my sons,how someone who was staying with him and his family,was found crying because of an absent father, and,well you know the rest. It is all very sad,I  myself come from a broken family, it is an interesting term ,broken family,for it takes in the whole of a family,for the children grow up ,with a brokenness. The person who shot those children in Newtown came from a broken family, only God knows what affect it had on him, maybe he killed those children because .he resented that they did have parents. Now I do not know if what I am saying is right,nor am I saying  what he did was right, it was evil, but I believe that so much pain is caused by the brokenness of the family in all societies. What is the answer?,well I can only speak for myself, I discovered very early in my life a loving heavenly Father, this has always stayed with me, throughout my life. I believe we don't have to live in brokenness,be it from a broken family, or whatever,in Jesus we can know healing, and be granted an entrance into the family of a loving heavenly /
A prayer......./Dear heavenly Father,have mercy on the brokenness of so many ,many, people,in the name of Jesus who came heal the broken in heart,the broken in spirit. Amen/

Thursday, 27 December 2012

God is here. [ John 1 v14 ]

Our dear pastor illustrated a point by putting letters  on paper which read/ God is no where/, and then he changed the position of one letter, to spell out ,/ God is now here/.Consider the words God is no where, and how so many people,live as if that is true,also it may appear to those who are suffering that God is no where/. The second lot of words remind us of that vital truth,which Christmas declares that God is now here, Emmanuel means God is with us.Now Christ has gone to heaven, but that does not mean He is not here, no ,in the person of the Holy Spirit He is here. Jesus assured is followers that He would be with them,always,that He would never leave them nor forsake them.They would still have to face life an all that this means,but they would not face it alone.Have we not heard some dear Christians testify to the fact of God being with them in their deepest of trials.For the unsaved they live without the fear of the Lord ,acting in ways that declare God is no where. They may have a woolly idea about when they die,of some sort of after life,but that is all  it is. Today dear child of God take comfort that God is here now, here with you, no matter what you may be facing,here to strengthen you, provide for you,protect you, to comfort you, and to bring you through to eternal glory.
A  prayer..../Dear God inspite of what we see with our natural sight, by faith we believe that You are here, and not only here ,but You are with us,we thank You in Jesus name. Amen /

Wednesday, 26 December 2012

Suffering,Sovereignty,Salvation. [ Revelation 7 v 10=17 ]

A number of us met to sing carols outside a local store ,we also give out leaflets,mince pies and other things,this we did in spite of the rain.I thought a few pieces of music would have suitable,Handels water music,Singing in the rain, and there shall be showers of blessing.Many of the people expressed thanks for seeking to bring a little bit of Christmas cheer,we hope we did.In our country we have experienced a tremendous lot of rain this year. The result many dear people have had to leave their homes because of flooding,hopefully most of them are insured, but not all,so for them it wont be a very  merry Christmas. Let us remember in prayer those affected by such events,also let us pray for many dear Christians who are suffering,violence,homelessness,I just read this morning of the Christians in Syria and their suffering. The so called Arab spring has become a time of great uncertainty for Gods people,when the true nature of Islam is being manifested,by intolerance,and violence. We are not exaggerating the situation,but we must not loose hope, or despair, for as I often remind you and myself God is still on the throne and He will remember His own.Also in this dark world of sin the dear Christ will still enter into the hearts of those whom God in His sovereign grace will choose.
A  prayer....../Dear God have mercy upon this suffering world, and especially Your dear children who are suffering, in Jesus name Amen/
A  prayer...../Dear God we praise You that You are sovereign over all things,uphold Your dear people in Syria and in many other place where Your people  are suffering,and in the midst of suffering build Your church,dear Lord and Saviour Amen /

Tuesday, 25 December 2012

Going beyond being generous.]Romans 12 v1 [

I believe God is the giving God,He in other words is a very generous Being, He giveth and giveth and  giveth again. But it suddenly struck me that He is a sacrifical God, maybe that seems obvious, for surely in  giving His son we see sacrifice,it cost God dearly,I mean the whole Godhead,for Christ coming into this world involved ,all three within the Godhead, and that cost.Yes God is generous,but He is also sacrificial.Now I asked myself the question am I living a sacrificial life?,now I would say I am a reasonably generous person,but what about sacrifices  do I make?,or am prepared to make?I think it becomes a bit scarey when I think about it, and to be honest I have not given to much thought to it. May be I need to think a bit more about ,presenting my body as a living sacrifice , each day.This is something I have to give more thought to,I sort of remember a saying by someone, which goes something like, /If Christ be God and give himself for me then there is no sacrifice to great or me to make/. This is not about making a resolution, nor is it  just about money,and its not about making anybody  feeling guilty,goodness there is enough of that about, no it is about ,acting in ways that the reality of Christ in my life, not just in word, but also in deed. Nor am I calling for someone to be a martyr,although it may require that of us, no I want us all to be open to the Spirits leading, not guilt filled actions.
A  prayer..../Almighty God we bow before You with thankful heart for Your sacrificial  love to this world, and to us individually, in sending Jesus to die for our sins Amen /


Monday, 24 December 2012

Vanity fair. [ 1 John 2 v 15-17 ]

I must confess I think the most stupid adverts on the TV are those advertising perfume or aftershave, they try to convince us that if we will wear,this or that perfume or in my case aftershave,girls will get the boys, and the boys will get the girls.  There was a time of course when  men didn't wear aftershave, it was considered effeminate, many years ago I heard a speaker tell how a woman spoke to a preacher of wearing perfume, and he replied it was obvious she wasn't., we all laughed at this. They say advertisement pays , but it doesn't always pay to take them to serious, all some of them are good for, is giving one a bit of a laugh. I wonder would they sell many chocolates if  a very obese person was doing the advert,or if there was a warning on the packaging . I have got into the habit of reading the leaflet that comes with my medication to understand the benefits but also to understand the side effects. I wonder how it would effect the sales of cars,if it had a notice on it that tells us the side effect,like this car can kill,Maine and injure. The world advertises sex,violence,wealth,gambling,drink ,they never tell you the side effects,do they?but the word of God does,it always reminds us of the things we do not want to hear, that there is always consequences,as a person sows so shall they reap, that if you play with fire you will be burned.
A  prayer..../Dear God, help us to not be fooled by so much that is on offer, in vanity fair, in Jesus name Amen /

Sunday, 23 December 2012

When the season ends. [ Lamentation 3 v 22=23 ]

I receive Christmas cards and I send and give many,I suppose it is a bit of chore to write and send them,and maybe we feel there is not much point to it. Now I work with mentally ill people ,and one person in particular told me the number of cards he had received,that appeared important to to him.It appeared to me that it encouraged him and affirmed that people cared,that he was not alone.When God created man He declared that it was not good for man to be alone [Genesis 2 v18],things have not changed,and it seems to me that people still have that need for other people.In spite of a world that's population has grown into billions,people still feel lonely and isolated,the Beatles sang of all the lonely people were do they all come from?. At Christmas we make a special effort to contact people ,families get together,we give gifts,we feel a compassion for people, and all that is good. I am sure you have seen the little stickers on cars windows which reads,puppies are not just for Christmas,well making a special effort sending gifts,feeling compassion, is not just for Christmas,these are not things that should disappear,when the Christmas music stops,or when the Christmas tree comes down.
A  prayer ..../ Dear God,we thank You for all the goodness of Christmas,but help us to not let it cease, when the season to be jolly has finished, in Jesus name Amen /

Saturday, 22 December 2012

Am I living a lie?. [1 John 4 v20 ]

There are some people like Hitler who are born liars,telling lies is not a thing the Christian should be involved in,those who believe in Him who is the truth,should not tell lies. I suppose most of us would agree with that,and yet consider what John has to say to us from his epistle,/ If a man say,I love God,and hateth his brother, he is a liar.[ 1 Jn 4 v20]/and in fact it is a contradiction as John goes on to say,/for anyone who does not love his brother, whom he has seen, cannot love God, whom he has not seen/.John was called the beloved disciple,and ended his days in Ephesus,and it was said that when he was a very old man, and had to be carried into the fellowship, he would continually say, love one another. Continually in his 1st epistle he stresses the importance of loving one another. In fact the whole epistle stresses love,God is love ,and that who ever lives in love,lives in God, and God in Him[1st Jn 4 v16]. If we are an angry bitter soul with unforgiveness in our hearts,then we are out of fellowship with God. John again stresses ,that whoever loves God must love his brother [4v21]. This loving our fellow Christians is an evidence that we are a true child of God,this love will always forgive,always give,always manifest what love is, as is shown to us in 1st Corinthians 13. When our dear Saviour spoke about loving ,He said it was a commandment, [John 13 v 34-35],it is a telling witness to a world torn asunder by hate,and bitterness.The question is are we keeping this commandment?.
A  prayer...../Dear  God, forgive us for not loving as You love,  grant us the grace to love all we meet,and especially Your dear children in Jesus name Amen /

Friday, 21 December 2012

How to spot a liar. [1 John 2 v22 ]

I have an aftershave called Truth, one of my sons give it to me , once I spray it on I cannot smell it ,but others do,and comment how nice a smell it gives of.[ By the way this is not an advertisement ]  How important is truth?,and where can one find truth?,well one will not find it in a bottle of aftershave, nor will you find it in Crystals,or in the cinema,or any of the great philosophers,or in cults,or  in the variety of religions that are in the world,of which there are many, or politics. One finds it in the Bible,but it goes even further than just finding it in the Bible. The Bible means a lot of things to a lot of people,and an awful lot of  what they believe is wrong,John in his epistle ,writes that anyone who denies that Jesus is Christ is a liar.[1 John 2 v22] Christ means Messiah, the anointed one, the long promised one, from the beginning of time.Marshall in his commentary ,writes a number of things about this verse./ For  John the height of  heresy is too deny that Jesus is the Messiah,the Son of God and Saviour/ Things have not changed, for Gods truth does not change, nor ever will.As you consider the child in the manger this  Christmas,ask God to give you a fresh revelation as to He was and is,and whole fast to that revelation, let no one rob you of the truth as to who Christ really is. As I put on the aftershave called truth, so let us put on the truth of the word of God,let us walk in that truth,let us tell others of this truth, that truth can be like my aftershave a sweet smelling fragrance, a saving fragrance[ 2 Corinthians 2v 15]
A prayer...../Dear God save us from believing a lie, for if we do then we become liars, in Jesus name Amen/.

Thursday, 20 December 2012

Strengthen us [ Psalm 27 ]

As a Christian we have a tremendous advantage over the non Christian ,this is not statement of pride but  a humbling reality. As I prayed with my wife I prayed about the natural and the spiritual,for there is the natural and the spiritual,and the lesson we continually being taught by God is that without Christ,  we can do nothing [John 15 v5 ]. Now this is hard lesson to learn in fact we will always till the day we die or Christ comes , be learning this lesson.If we going to cope,if we are going to learn to endure,if we are going to overcome difficulties, if we are, I am sure you get the picture.  The great apostle that man of great learning,and abilities declared unashamedly that everything he did was in the strength of the Lord [ Philippians 4 v13 ]. In other words he needed  the Lord to help him in all things, we are no different, no matter how educated we are, how gifted we are, we need to learn to lean heavy upon the Lord, 24/7.The hymn writer wrote I dare not take one step without Thine aid, Habakkuk the prophet declared,the Lord God is my strength [3v9 ]. If we limited in abilities then we must not give into despair ,but we must see that in Gods strength we can do those things we have to do.As I look back I am amazed how the Lord has helped me,I know that our strength can wane,but not Gods.
A  prayer......./Dear God keep us from self reliance,help us to see that we need Your strength for each new day ,and each new task , in Jesus name strengthen us Amen /

Wednesday, 19 December 2012

The devils stradigy. [ Genesis 3 v1-19 ]

I have just finished reading , /The rise and fall of the third of the third Reich,written by W.T. Shirer/,it was a fascinating read, and I really enjoyed it.Yet what I read was not enjoyable,in so many respects it was a horror story,a story that was stranger than fiction. Of a man who fooled a nation,under his rule he created jobs,and people often say this indicating the good he did, but the good he did was only a front,behind  that front Hitler was possessed with a hatred for those he believed to be inferior,and a deep hatred of the Jews. Initially the German people ignored what he was doing to the Jews because they had jobs and food in their bellies.Hitler was truly a child of the devil,for like the devil he was a born liar,and he worked to his fathers strategy,a strategy that would lead to the nations destruction. What the devil does, he tempts us with what appears so attractive,like drugs,power,sex and many other things,[in the case of Germany it was jobs and food to eat ]but he never tells us the true cost,until its to late,then we are hooked and our goose is cooked. So today let none of us be fooled by the goodies the devil dangles before us,for if we are, and we take his bait,we will forfeit so much that we love and care for,remember  temptation is not a sin it is the yielding that is,and also remember, God can help us overcome the devils temptations,so let us ask the Saviour to help us,He will carry us through.
A  prayer...../Dear God help us not to take the devils bait,help us to resist him,and to overcome temptation,in Jesus name Amen /

Tuesday, 18 December 2012

Intimacy. [ Song of Solomon]

I wonder are you afraid intimacy?, I know some people and they can give an impression that they are not afraid, yet all the time,they don't want it. . I knew a couple before they got married,the girl appeared affectionate, but once she was married,her husband discovered  she didn't want intimacy. She was quite unkind in what she said to him,the marriage lasted a good few years, and then he left her,  may be she feels hard done by,but she didn't want intimacy. That sort of marriage is called by some to be a loveless marriage,for surely marriage is about intimacy,if one person refuses, then it will be no surprise if the marriage suffers. Let us look at this at a higher level, God and us,do we like intimacy? many people hide behind a front,they appear to be one thing outwardly but inwardly, they never really allow God that intimacy that He desires. It is interesting that one of the last things Jesus asked Peter, was,do you love me Peter?, he asked him three times, so we assume He thought it was important.[ John 21] , and of course it was.We were created for intimacy, for we are told ,the two shall be one,if this is not so them the relationship will suffer, be it a marriage ,or our relationship with with Jesus, for in essence that relationship is a love story
A  prayer......./ Dear God help those who for whatever reason are afraid of intimacy ,in their marriage and in their relationship with You in Jesus name Amen /. 

Monday, 17 December 2012

Death.[ Acts 16 v31 ]

Another tragedy has occurred in America, a man went to a school and shot 27 people,some of them children,it is heartbreaking to think of such a thing taking place.All we can do is pray for that situation,remember it was not God who did it,for it is easy to blame Him,Adam Lanza did it.Last week I received word that my sister-in -law had died,again all we can do is pray , death stalks the world in one shape or another,through illness,or through violent means.One cannot out run death, but one can run to the Saviour,and then we will be saved,it does not answer all the questions relating to death,and I don't thing we will ever know all the answers, but it answers the question as to our eternal salvation. This life is short even if we live to a hundred,and it does us well to see things from an eternal prospective,for death is but a door into another dimension, it is not, that this life does not matter,but eternity matters more.We stress the importance of life, and of course it is important, but eternal life is of more importance,and it is vital that we are prepared to die,for without Christ the judgement of God awaits us.I cannot answer all the questions relating to the  tragedy in Newtown, or even the death of my sister-in-law,but I can point you to the one who died that we might live eternally, that person is Jesus.
A  prayer..../ Dear God we commit those dear people in Newtown to You ,have mercy,we also ask that when death touches us we may consider our eternal destiny in Jesus name Amen /

Sunday, 16 December 2012

Friendship [ John 15 v13 ]

I received a booklet with Christmas devotionals put out by my old Bible college, the Belfast bible College,the person who sent me it , is a dear friend,since my time in Bible college. She is confined to her home because of ill health, I write to her on a regular bases, and she replies occasionally . Just recently I had a conversation with another of my friends from Bible college,it is nice after all these years that I have still got their friendship. They both went on to serve the Lord, one became a deaconess, the other a pastor, he is still in the ministry although he is aged 75. Another friend of mine lives in Wales ,a godly minister, preached thousands of sermons, but because of ill health ,has had to stop all preaching, he is quite old. Another friend of mine is one I have known since I was in the ministry,their friendship is important to me,as indeed are all my friends, and I thank God for them. But the greatest friend I have is Jesus, there is so much one could say about my friend Jesus, I have never seen Him,but if I did I am sure I would recognise Him,of course one day I will see Him , and as the old hymn puts it, that will be glory for me. I have never seen Him but I love Him,because He first loved me,yes me ,even me, loved me so much He took the punishment for all my sins on the cross. Knowing Him is not an exclusive club, no He is willing to be the friend of anyone, who asks Him to be their Saviour, so why not ask Him now.
A  prayer...../ Dear God I thank for those dear people I can call a friend, and especially thank You for Jesus my forever friend  Amen/

Saturday, 15 December 2012

More Grace. [ Hebrews 4 v15 ]

More was the response to poor Oliver Twists request for more food ,in that orphanage one did not get more,the request would be seen as ingratitude, and would have been dealt with severely.In an old movie starring Humphrey Bogart ,he played the part of a down and out,he goes to a fellow American and asks for help,later he goes to him again receives help but is told not to make a habit of it. More we need more,but more of what?, more  grace,I am not ashamed to admit I need more grace,yesterdays  supply is gone,today I am a needy soul, in need of Gods grace. So what can I do ,well there is only one place I can receive grace , it is at Gods throne of grace,through Jesus.But surely God will get weary of me coming to Him,surely He will remind me of all the times He has helped me, and say enough, is enough,stand on your own two feet, stop coming to Me,and asking for more. No, He will not say that, James tells us,/He giveth more grace [4 v6 ].Of all the things we need the most important is more grace.So go to Jesus today, not as a beggar, but as child of God and ask Him for more grace, to meet your need,to overcome,to persevere, and to know  victory over the world the flesh and the devil, He will not say no to you.
A prayer...../ Dear God in the name of Your Son Jesus grant unto us grace, and more grace Amen /

Friday, 14 December 2012

Deep prayers. [ Genesis 32 v 24 -32]

A  lady was asked how she coped,she answered that usually she prayed ordinary prayers, but when she was faced with problems she prayed deeper prayers.In Psalm 130v1 we read, /Out of the depths I cried unto thee, O Lord/.Now that is a deep prayer , M Henry wrote,/ The best men may sometimes be in the depths in great trouble and affliction. But in the greatest depths,it is our privilege that we may cry unto God and be heard./Is our posture important when we pray? I dont think so, what is important is the attitude of the heart,my son John tells me how he prays while driving,he does not close his eyes.Consider Jonah,he prayed in the belly of a great fish ,when he was in a weakened condition ,Nehemiah prayed as he stood before a king[2 v4 ],but that prayer came from the heart of a man who was heartbroken,it was a deep prayer. It was James who wrote about the effectual fervant prayer having great effect[5 v16], and how Elijah prayed earnetly to great effect[v17].Consider our dear Saviour ,how He persisted in His prayer, and prayed with so much intensity,that He sweated great drops of blood, [Luke 22v44]. this was the deepest prayer ever prayed, there will be times when we will be faced with difficulties,and see great needs it will be then we will pray deep prayers,and God will hear and answer as is best,but in that deep prayer we will touch God, and He will touch us,as Jacob experienced[ Genesis 32 v 25 ]
A  prayer....../Dear God we thank that You hear our weakest of prayer, oh God teach us how to pray, in Jesus name Amen /

Thursday, 13 December 2012

Not giving up. [Luke 15 v 1-8 ]

It is important not to give up on people, after all God does not give up on us,I love the story  that Jesus told about the shepherd in Luke 15,how He left the 99 to go and find the one that was lost. Verse four reads ,and go after that which is lost, until he find it,think about those words ,/until he find it/, it seems to infer that he did not give up, he just kept on going until he found it. It is a picture of the good shepherds Jesus,who did not give up on us, Isaiah 53v6 ,reminds us that like lost sheep we have all gone astray,we are all lost. So there we were ,lost ,in mortal and eternal danger,we were doomed,ensnared by Satan and living in disobedience, blind to our condition,resistant to God and His ways,rebels. We were lost and we did not know it,or want to know,we despised the crucified one, never give Him a thought, He meant nothing to us . Like Paul we acted out of blind ignorance,and would have done away with religion,or if we did believe in God it was a god of our own invention.We never really considered our soul, all we considered,was the here and now,eating drinking,sport ,the pursuit of anything and everything,ignoring our deepest need, Christ.Yet in spite of all this, Christ never give up on us, He kept going until He found the one who was lost.So let none of us give up on others,let us keep praying for them,inspite of their attitude, for as they are, so we once were.
A prayer..../ Dear Lord Jesus we thank You, for not giving up on us, give us the grace in the pursuit of the Lost to not give up Amen /

Wednesday, 12 December 2012

Multimillionaires. [ 1 Corinthians 3 v11= 15 ]

I was talking to someone and they pointed out to me how certain TV evangelist are multimillionaires, they would justify having so much wealth from the Bible,under the term ,the prosperity gospel. I must confess that it does appear suspect.It appears to me these multimillionaires will always be having to justify their riches,it is interesting that Billy Graham tells how a wealthy person offered to underwrite all the work of his ministry but he refused it. His reasoning was, people people who did support his work with little donations,would stop praying, and the work would take a nosedive. It may appear attractive financial security,and reason if there was more money more could be accomplished,but it appears that what is more important, is our total dependence on God. I'm told that mother Teresa stopped her workers having tooth brushes ,because the poor people she worked with had none.Also a person bought carpet for the premises she worked from, when she was absent, when she came back she had it all taken up and given to the poor.I suppose we have the two extremes,what is the right one?, are both right?,a friend of mine spoke of someone who was wealthy and generous,and they commentated on his generosity, and he replied,,as he gives it out the Lord,brings more in. I am very conscious as I write this of having a judgemental attitude, I sincerely hope not,in the end I am only accountable for myself,as to my possessions,and as to my giving.
A   prayer..../ Dear God  we thank You that You know the hearts of all people,help me to be as generous as You are in Jesus name Amen /

Tuesday, 11 December 2012

A prisoner.[ Psalm 105 v 17-21 ]

The little letter by Paul to Philemon was written by him while he was in prison,he was  not there because he was guilty of any crime,but because he was a Christian,and proclaimed the Gospel of our Lord Jesus. This is still going on for many dear children of God,persecution, prison,and even death,we need not be surprised at this ,it is the way of the cross that leads home.It is unfair and yet it still happens and I suppose will always happen,there is an enduring to the end,when Christ will return. As I read this letter of Philemon, I noted that Paul describes his time in prison,by saying that he is a prisoner, of the Romans, of circumstances,of chance, no,he describes himself as the prisoner of  Jesus Christ.For Paul his Lord was always the first cause, our times are in His hands,Joseph was a prisoner of the Lord, and in the Lords time he was set free.Let us remember that God holds the key,and while we may not fully understand the why, we can trust Him to sustain us,preserve us, and in His good time to release us. Let us never loose sight of Gods sovereignty,this means as Pink writes, /A true recognition of Gods sovereignty will avow Gods perfect right to do as He wills/. Let us not murmur or complain, but to bow in humility and pray as our Saviour prayed,/Even so Father, for so it seemed good in Thy sight[Matthew 11v26 ]
A  prayer...../ Dear God help us to view life in the light of Your sovereignty in Jesus name Amen /

Monday, 10 December 2012

Staying faithful to the truth. [ 2 Timothy 2 v15 ]

I spoke to a friend  on the phone ,he is 75 yrs of age, and he is still a pastor ministering Gods word, he is very knowledgeable,has a vast library,and says he reads two theological books every week.I would class him as an academic, and yet he has not let his much learning go to his head,he loves the Lord intently and does not compromise in proclaiming the truth.My pastor who is now with the Lord,was not what one would call an academic,but he loved the Lord, and could preach a grand sermon,I owe him so much, and I loved him dearly.One should always try to grow in grace and in the knowledge of our Saviour,we should respect those who are academic,not despise them,and we should also not despise those who are not academic. The main thing is, loving the Lord, and being faithful to the word of God, to not compromise in proclaiming the truth, not to depart from the simplicity of the gospel. The apostle Paul wrote of those who had departed from the faith,and who had started preaching error[1  Timothy 4 v1-3 ],let us remember that Gods truth does not change,man does not change,and they need to hear the gospel, and the word of God,I know I do.
A  prayer..../  Dear God in our pursuit of knowledge help us to stay true to Your word in Jesus name Amen /

Sunday, 9 December 2012

What is it to be? [ Colossians 1 v27]

John Newton said,/ I  am still in the land of the dying. I shall soon be in the land of the living /,I wonder what you think of these words.There is an old gospel hymn which goes,/I am going to a  city where the roses never die,here they bloom but for a season,soon their beauty is decayed, I am going to city where the roses never die/.In spite of medical advances we are all without exception going to die,yes we live in the land of the dying,but as John said we will soon be in the land of the living.I think for many of us there are so many things that have dulled our vision of the eternal glories that shine afar.For the unsaved the devil has blinded their minds as to death ,heaven and that great unmentionable hell,for the many it is, win the lottery and then we will have the security we desire. Yet all around us people are dying ,the undertaker will never go out of business,for we live in the land of the dying. Yet it does not cease there as John said,/I will soon be in the land of the living/,there is a land where no one will die,where there will be no need of doctors ,hospitals,undertakers,graveyards. It is a land that is fairer than day,a land when God will wipe away all tears,and there shall be no more sorrow,nor crying,neither shall there be any more pain.[Revelation 21 v4 ]At this time there is an opportunity for all to gain an entrance into this land of the living, by trusting in Jesus as their Saviour,as Colossians 1 v27 tells us,/ Christ in us the hope of glory/,if Christ is not in us then there is no hope of glory,no hope of entering the land of the living.
A prayer.../ Dear God in this land of the dying,we thank You there is hope for all who trust Your Son Jesus. Amen /

Saturday, 8 December 2012

Be still my soul. [ 1 Kings 19 v 11-12 ]

I was listening to that well known peace of music by Sibelius, Filandia, it starts quite loud and then all of a sudden you have this soft peaceful refrain like a that still small voice that Elijah heard ,that followed the fierce wind,the earth shaking earthquake,and the fire [1 Kings 19 v 11-12].That still small voice that stilled the fearful prophets heart, now that peaceful refrain has been put to a lovely hymn,Be still my soul.Sibelius of course wrote that music as a tribute to his home land Finland,but I cant help but think that God had him write it for that lovey hymn.I remember listening to the radio,and people spoke how this lovely hymn just hit the spot, and blessed then.We really do need to hear the still voice of God, for life can throw so much at us,the world is full of noise,and sometimes it can be a very fearful place,and we need to realise that God is the God of the still small voice . I remember a  person saying that God loves noise,no, God is the God of the still small voice. so let us consider some of the words from the hymn, Be still my soul by Katharina A. D. Von Schlegel.
Be still my soul, the Lord is on thy side. Bear patiently the cross of grief or pain. Leave to thy God to order and provide. In every change He faithful will remain. Be still my soul, thy best, thy heavenly Friend. Through thorny ways leads to a joyful end. Be still my soul , thy God doth undertake. To guide the future as He has the past. Thy hope, thy confidence, let nothing shake. All now mysterious shall be bright at last. Be still my soul, the waves and wind still know. His voice who ruled them while He dwelt below.
A  prayer...../Dear God we confess that we are easily frightened,at times all we can hear is the wind,the earthquake ,and we see the fire,oh  God speak to our hearts with that still small voice, that our souls may be still and know that Thou art God, we ask this in our Saviours precious name Amen /

Friday, 7 December 2012

I shed a tear. [ Isaiah 9 v6 ]

Last night I  went to hear a choir sing of the Christ event,there was  also a computer display on a screen ,that enhanced the singing. As I listened to the choir and watched the screen, I was touched,I didn't applaud, I just shed a tear,for it brought home to me afresh the wonder of the incarnation. We all need moments in our lives when what what we believe, touches our hearts, and causes us to weep,not tears of sadness,but tears of wonder ,tears of gratitude, such where my tears.Christmas is many things to many people, family,friends,presents,food,but of course it is more so much more,it is about the greatest mystery ever manifested,and it began with a babe. Who was that little frail child?, non other than God with us, Immanuel [Matthew 1 v23 ],and why did He come?why should such a thing take place?. The answer is very profound, and yet so simple,love,yes love for you and me,yes a love that brought Him from heaven. Yet that was only the first step, the ultimate fulfilling and meaning of His coming, is in His name,Jesus,for it means saviour. What or who would He save?,sinners,that means you and I,how would He save?. Again we have a great mystery ,He would become a sacrifice on a cross.
             O how I love Him, how I adore Him,
             My breath my sunshine, my all in all.
              The great creator became my Saviour,
             And all Gods fullness, dwelleth in Him.
              [W. E. Booth- Clibborn ]
A  prayer..../ Father God we worship You through Your dear Son Jesus,we are touched when we consider Your Love Amen /

Thursday, 6 December 2012

God is. [ Psalm 46 ]

God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble[Psalm 46v1]Are you troubled today?are you worried about your family,your job, your health?,the list could go on and on and on. So today consider this lovely Psalm,these opening words,it starts by telling us that God is a refuge.What is a refuge? it is a place of safety,we have women's refuges,where they can go to escape abusive husbands.Maybe you feel threatened where you live,yes even in your home,where can you flee to?,the answer is to the Lord who will keep you safe. Next the Psalmist  tells us that the Lord is our strength,are you feeling overwhelmed by the challenges of life?,are you feeling you cannot go on?are you feeling weak and inadequate?,well today spend time with your Lord,look to Him ,He will grant unto you the strength you need. Next are you in trouble?, troubles come to us in many shapes and sizes, look to God in your trouble, He will help you,it says so in His word, so it must be true. Verse 2 declares , Therefore will not we fear, we are told not throw away our confidence,it will be rewarded [Hebrews 10 v35 ],today trust Him, He will not fail you.
A  prayer...../ Dear God we praise You that we are not on our own,that You are with us,You will keep us safe, You will give us strength, You will help us,we thank You in Jesus name Amen /

Wednesday, 5 December 2012

Are we up to the challenge? [ Acts 10 ]

I heard something recently that goes like this, a couple were seeking to take bibles into a strict Muslim country, and their car broke down.As they were figuring out what to do, nomads came along,and the nomads approached them and said, are you the ones who are bringing us the book of life. Here is a similar story,a Christian lady was in an Muslin  country,she pulled into a petrol station,and standing near by was a man carrying a gun,and the Lord spoke to her ,go give that man a bible.She thought that it was to dangerous,so she drove of, but the words she had heard persisted,so she went back and prayerfully went to the man,,and offered him  a bible, he told her that he was told to wait there, and someone would bring him the book of life.It is more and more difficult to reach people with the gospel,in Muslin countries,it has become like it was under Communism, this presents a tremendous challenge. But God is up to the challenge, the question is are we?
A  prayer...../ Dear God in a world that is becoming more and more intolerant to Your Gospel,help us to arise to the challenge of telling others about Christ,use us in what ever way it takes to rescue the perishing,in Jesus name Amen./

Tuesday, 4 December 2012

Being confident. [ Psalm 138 v8 ]

The apostle wrote,/Being confident of this very thing, that He which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ[Philippians 1 v6 ]. I thought on on this ,this morning, and was encouraged,  because often one looks at others,and mostly ones self,and one can despair. As to others well we can pray ,sometimes that is all we can, but as I said to someone who told me that he prayed and fasted for a particular person he was concerned about, your prayers have not been wasted. You see it appeared that his prayers were not bringing the desired effect,I am sure we have all that experience,but I believe they will, our prayer requests are like uncashed cheques,they are lodged in the bank of heaven,God has not forgotten them, or  like a bill that people refuse to pay.God will in his way and in His own time cash in that cheque. The apostle Paul did all he could to build up the church at Philippi,as indeed we should do with our churches, our families , and ourselves,but Paul's confidence was not in Paul. His confidence was in God, in the Lord Jesus Christ,and that is were our confidence should be,we can change no one, but He can, He will not leave the job half finished,nothing is to hard for Him.
A  prayer...../Dear God Grant us the grace to not despair as regards the imperfections we see in others, and ourselves, help us to have faith to trust You to perfect that which concerns Your children , in Jesus name Amen /

Monday, 3 December 2012

I speak at small gatherings of believers, they are but the remnants of former days,the folk who attend are lovely Christians. The thing is, unless God chooses to intervene,the gatherings will cease to be, and all  that be will  left is the building. Those folk have prayed as indeed I have that God would intervene,I often passed one particular church and would pray for it,but now it lies redundant. So what can one do?well let me tell you,and in telling I hope we will be guided by God the Holy Spirit.Recently I could not find one of my favourite books,I have a lot of books,but yesterday I found it,it is called the Sovereignty of God by A.W. Pink, and in finding that book I was reminded again of that great truth, the sovereignty of God.Jesus our dear Saviour said He would build His church.[ Matthew 16v18]. Yes He will build His church ,and we must bow always to that reality,He is building His church,in the most difficult of places,in places one would never imagine,we need not fear as regards His church, in the end, it is His church,not ours, we are but part of that church.He can if He chooses revive even small gatherings. So let us not despair ,but by faith look unto Jesus the one who is our Sovereign Lord,who will build His church.
A  prayer....../Dear God let us to hold unto the fact that You are sovereign,over the world, over us,over Your church ,in Jesus name Amen /

Sunday, 2 December 2012

Freedom not licence. [ Galatians 5 ]

One of the big concerns in our country is maintaining a free press, and finding some way to regulate them,a free press is very important and I would be very unhappy if that was changed. The first thing totalitarian government's do to is control the press,for they don't want people to know what they are really doing,don't want, their dark deeds reported. Yet much an all, as I want a free press ,I, and many people feel they have abused their freedom, causing a lot of pain ,hurting and acting in ways that are criminal.Sometimes it appears to me that people are being tried by the press, instead of by the legitimate legal procedures.In Galatians 5v1, the apostle Paul reminds the Christians ,that,/It was for freedom that Christ has set us free/,they were in grave danger of going back into the bondage of the law.So Paul writes to seek to encourage them to stand firm in the truth of the Gospel,and in v13ff he reminds them that freedom is not licence to act in an unloving or unholy manner.The road we are on is a narrow way,and we must not stray unto the broad way,that would only lead to bondage. We can be so easy deceived into walking in paths of unrighteousness, because we have not listened to Gods word ,likewise we have failed to be led by Gods Spirit,and when that happens, we are no longer free.
A  prayer....../Dear God in a world were so many people are not free ,spiritually,intellectually,and morally,we ask that they may know the liberating power of Jesus, in His name we ask this name, and we also pray that we who have been set free in Christ may not use our freedom as a licence for wrong practises Amen/

Saturday, 1 December 2012

Works without faith. [ Ephesians 2 v8-9 ]

 James in his epistle stresses the importance of works, not for salvation but as an evidence of salvation,he writes that  faith without works is dead[2v17], but what about works without faith?. There are many ,many people who do good works ,every year millions are collected for children in need.. Muslims at Rama dam are taught to do good works now all this is commendable,also the Christmas season is a time when people manifest a spirit of generosity. The answer is ,while good works are commendable they have no bearing on our being accepted by God, good works are just that good works,they do not  commend us to God, or  in any shape or form,  grant us a standing before God. Neither the works of the law[Galatians 2v16] or the good works that we may do[Ephesians 2 v8-9] can give us standing before a holy God. I use the term holy so that we may begin to understand that like oil and water,holiness and sinfulness don't mix. In saying this I am emphasising the biblical truth that sins separate us from a holy God [Isaiah 59 v2 ]Not until sin is dealt with can we have any hope of being accepted by God,our works count for nothing,the only thing that counts in Gods sight is when He sent His only begotten Son, to do a work that no one else could do,to die on a cross. On that cross justice and mercy kissed each other,and the way was opened for sin to be forgiven. Here is what our Saviour said, in John 6 v29. /The work of God is this, to believe in the one He has sent/
A  prayer...../ Dear God help not to be fooled into thinking that we are  our good works , and make us acceptable in Your sight, for You have made it clear in Your word ,that only the work of Jesus on the cross is the  ground on which we are saved Amen /

Friday, 30 November 2012

Dont be fooled.[2 John v 10-11 ]

One of the aspects of 2 Corinthians that Paul is having to deal with ,where false teachers, who were seeking to undermined his authority, and the gospel. He calls them false apostles, deceitful workers,[2 Corinthians 11v13],this was not just name calling ,rather it was Paul pointing out ,the danger and the damage these people could cause to these young believers at Corinth. In verse 4 ,he writes of those who preach another Jesus,another spirit, and another gospel.The J Ws are very active where I live,we also have a Mormon gathering,  what Paul wrote of those false teacher in Corinth applies to them.They all preach another Jesus,another spirit, and another gospel,this is not a trivial thing,no it is deadly serious ,peoples eternal destinies are at stake.They may be nice enough people but they are not Gods people.Islam is the same they have another Jesus,another spirit, and an other gospel.There are many religions,who appear Christian,but when you look at what they believe, your discover many weired and strange things that run contrary to Gods word. Be careful that you are not fooled by them,and led a way from the truth, to the damage of your eternal soul.
A  prayer....../Dear God deliver us from being deceived by false religions,give us discerning minds,and steadfast spirits, to stand and having done all to stand, in Jesus name, Amen /

Thursday, 29 November 2012

Love not just an abstract thing.[ John 3 v16 ]

In 2 Corinthians 8 v 24 ,we read /The proof of your love/,the apostle Paul is encouraging the saints at Corinth to contribute to the needy saints in Jerusalem. So he encourages them to show the proof of their love by giving help to them financially.Let us remember that love is not just an abstract thing,it is and should be manifested in real deeds. God loves this world so much, everyday we receive food ,drink and a multitude of things,and the greatest manifestation of His love was in the person of Jesus,and His death on the cross,Where is the proof of Gods love? look to Calvary, herein is love,here is a love that is not just in words and ideas,but in real flesh and blood body.We are to be like our loving heavenly Father,to show our love, in a practical manner.There is a brother who attends our church,while walking around his neighbourhood ,he got into conversation with a person,her husband was tinkering with his car, he was having trouble with it,and although he didn't really know that person he offered him the loan of his car,the people were not Christians, surely that brother was showing the proof of his love.Again let me stress that love is not just an abstract thing,it should be evidenced by love in action. 
A  prayer....../Dear God we thank for your love to us shown us in so many ways,especially in Jesus Your dear Son,grant us to be more like You in expressing our love for You and for others, in Jesus name Amen /

Wednesday, 28 November 2012

Love one another. [ Genesis 50 v 15-21 ]

Our Saviour prayed that as Christians ,and that we love one another, I have always tried to take this seriously,but sometimes it is hard. Last week I felt convicted that I had offended a Christian couple it was not intentional,but it unsettled me,so as I drove by their home I stopped my car and went and spoke to them,saying I was sorry if I had offended them, and so peace was restored in my heart. It is amazing how unforgiving some Christians are,the divisions that develop in churches, and go on for years,and years. There are Christians who hold ill feelings in there hearts for years,and they simply ignore what our Saviour commanded,the love that we are meant to show and feel,is a Christlike love,that forgives,and forgives, and forgives.It is a love that is bigger and better than how we feel naturally,it is in fact going beyond our natural feelings. Christ like love is on a higher level than even our natural family love, our natural families  can  be so unforgiving, as in the case of Joseph, and his 11 brothers.They hated him with a murderous hate, they wanted to destroy him.But this Old Testament saint showed New Testament love, he not onl  forgive them but he also blessed them. Is this not what Jesus did ,and continues to do, and commands us to do. John the apostle of love wrote,/ Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God,and everyone that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God. He goes onto say,/He that loveth not,knoweth not God, for God is love [ 1 John 4 v 7-8 ]
A  prayer..../Dear  God grant unto us a forgiving spirit in Jesus name Amen /

Tuesday, 27 November 2012

Lessons we can learn. [ Philippians 3 v 4 -7 ]

There are lessons to be learnt from everyday happens,take yesterday when my son John with his dinner in one hand, decided to move a pot on the cooker which he thought was in danger of falling over. As he reached out to the pot  ,his dinner fell to the floor, how should one reacted, shout, huff,?, well what can we learn from this simple happening?. Well we need to keep things in proportion,I used to watch a TV program called one foot in the grave,the main character always appeared to get things out of proportion, if only he could have laughed at so many things, it would have made life so much easier. Let us not make a mountain out of a molehill. Next ,  it is no good crying over spilt milk ,there are things that happen a car crash,a wrong investment, or whatever it is not helpful to keep going on, and on, and on,about it, let it go,stop punishing yourself..Next I often say to myself when things happen, look for the mercies,in this case,we have plenty of food in our home, my son did not go without a dinner,and we have a nice tiled floor,so making it very easy to clear up the mess.
A  prayer....../ Dear God  help us to know how to cope with the unexpected difficult things that You allow to come into our lives, in Jesus name Amen /

Monday, 26 November 2012

Not optional. [ Psalm 46 ]

Romans 12 v12. /Rejoicing in hope,patient in tribulation,continuing instant in prayer/ Let us consider the last part of this verse,/continuing instant in prayer/,the point is this, how are we going to rejoice in hope,and be patient in tribulation?,the place of prayer is the answer.The qualities that we need,cannot be manifested in our lives naturally, these are spiritual qualities. We need continually to learn that we do not have the resources ,in ourselves to rise to the high calling of being a Christian.Jesus said that our righteousness must rise higher than mere religion[Matthew 5 v 20].Read the sermon on the mount,the challenge that it brings us,is awesome,and yet we are challenged to live according to what our Saviour taught there. The reality is, in ourselves we cant,and so we must, continue instant in prayer,for it is only in prayer do we receive the grace to face the challenge of being victorious.Prayer is not just an extra something that is optional, no it is vital,and the vital key to not only surviving but of overcoming and being victorious.Jesus said we were to pray and not faint,if we don't pray we will faint. So what difficulty are you facing today?well what is the answer?,pray ,pray and pray,yes the answer is as simple as that,it is not complicated,but it is vital for all of us, we neglect it to our own hurt.
A  prayer....../Dear God help to pray without ceasing,help us to pray as if our very lives depend on it in Jesus name Amen/

Sunday, 25 November 2012

Patient in tribulation. [ John 18v 36 ]

 Romans 12v12  /Rejoicing in hope,patient in tribulation, continuing instant in prayer/ Let us now consider, being patient in tribulation,it is Morris who points out that Paul is not writing about a minor pinprick,but deep and serious trouble.I receive news of what many dear Christians are suffering,particularly in North Korea,but  also in many places, and it is not a pinprick, it is very severe. But we do not want to underestimate the difficulties many people are having to cope with,be it severe sickness, or poverty,or injustice. Whatever trials we are going through ,we are as W Barclay puts it,are to meet tribulation with triumphant fortitude. We can if like Christ we keep our vision clear,first of all to remember what He said, in the world ye shall have tribulation,[ John 16 v33],but He goes on to say,but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world. In saying that He had overcome the world, he is inferring that we like Him can be victorious over whatever we have to face.  How? by Christ who is with us ,consider the words of an old hymn by Mary Peters,/  Though we pass through tribulation, all will be well. Ours is such a full salvation ,all, all is well, happy  still in God confiding,fruitful if in Christ abiding. Holy through the Spirits guiding, all must be well. We expect a bright tomorrow,all will be well. Faith can sing through days of sorrow,all,all is well. On our Fathers love relying, Jesus every need supplying. Or in living or in dying, all must be well/.
A  prayer..../ Dear  God and Father  have mercy upon Your dear children who are suffering tribulation,grant them to know Your joy,and help us all in whatever trials we are facing,to know that  all will be well, in our Saviours name we ask this Amen/

Saturday, 24 November 2012

Rejoicing in hope [Psalm 42 v 5 ]

Romans 12 v12 reads/Rejoicing in hope,patient in tribulation,continuing instant in prayer/, Godet in his commentary,quotes  a Hofmann ,who paraphrases these words as follows,/In so far as we have cause to hope, let us be joyful, in so far as we have cause of pain, let us hold out, in so far as the door of  prayer is open to us, let us continue to use it/
Rejoicing in hope, is this possible,when everything is taken from you?, yes it is possible, consider Job and what he suffered, consider Paul and what he suffered,yet they never lost hope.What about rejoicing in hope?, yes it is,consider Habakkuk ,he saw the devastation that was coming on his people.What Habakkuk never lost was hope, and so he was able to rejoice,he declares ,/Yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will joy in the God of my salvation [3 v18] William Barclay wrote ,/There can never be any such thing as a hopeless Christian/, I don't know about that,but I do believe that if our hope is in God and His word, then we can truly hope and truly rejoice.When our hope is in others or even self,that hope can so easily leave us,but when our hope is in the one who cannot lie,in one who will always be faithful,in one who loves us with an everlasting love, and who manifested that love ,on an old rugged cross.
A  prayer...../Dear God, help us to rise above our fears,to trust in You,to not give into despair, and even the grace to rejoice in every situation in Jesus name Amen /

Friday, 23 November 2012

Is God on Israels side.?. [ Romane10v1 ]

This Sunday evening in our fellowship we are going to discuss the following topic ,/Is God on Israels side?/,what do think?. Well let us ask the question, what is Gods purpose for Israel and the gentiles?the answer is very simple, salvation [ 2 Peter 3 v9 / John 3 v16] At this time those Jews who have not accepted Christ as Saviour are just as lost as the gentiles who have not accepted Christ. It is in the epistle to the Romans we have set out Israels condition and their future, chapter 3 makes it clear that there is no difference between Jew or Gentile,for all have sinned and come short of the glory of God [3v22-23]. In chapter 4 he makes it clear that neither circumcision or keeping the law can save the Jew,and he illustrates this by pointing to Abraham who was  justified by faith [ 4 v3 ]. It is in chapters 9-11,he deals again with the question of Israel,again the underlying theme is redemptive ,that they may be saved [11v1]. God is not finished with them, he still has a plan for them,he cautions against us gentiles becoming proud,and dismissing the Jews as of no importance,God has still got a purpose for them.[11v28-29] salvation.At this time God is calling His elect mainly form the gentiles, but there will came a time when ,He will gather his elect from Israel,and so all the elect will be saved ,both Jew and gentile[11v26]
A   prayer...../Dear God we pray for the Jewish people,that You would save them in Jesus name. Amen /

Thursday, 22 November 2012

What sustains us [ Isaiah 40 v 28-31 ].

Desmond Tutu was asked what had sustained him in his Christian life?, he replied,/ The absolute centrality of prayer/. I would say amen to that .There are things we may give up,things we do now and again,but we must not give up prayer . What saddens me is the decline in the prayer meeting in many churches,may be it needed changed,but it did not need to cease. There are so many things we can write about prayer,here is one, the need is great,not just ours, but with the world at large.People need salvation we may not  be able to tell them, but we can pray for them. Our family may be over sensitive, likewise our neighbours,,  those we have daily contact with, it would not be wise to be always to be speaking to them, although we should do this as God enables us, and if we do witness to them water your witness by your prayers [ Psalm 126 v5 ].The list is endless as regards who we can pray for ,and remember that often our prayers are not answered right a way.D  Tutu said it was prayer that sustained him,he spoke of the absolute centrality of prayer,we are told that they  that wait upon the Lord shall.renew their strength[  Isaiah 40 v31],as a Christian of many years,I have been sustained by prayer,so dear saint of God pray without ceasing.

Wednesday, 21 November 2012

Freedom [ Luke 4 v18-19 ]

President Obama is visiting Burma at this time, seeking to encourage the powers that be to continue to move forward to a democratic government,and in the process become a more free country.On this  I was very impressed, as he sought to define freedom,that true freedom is not just about casting ones vote.He then mentioned what a former President said, President Roosevelt who  said there were four things that are important as regards freedom [1] Freedom from want. [2]Freedom of expression [3]Freedom to work . [ 4]Freedom from fear.I hope I got them right I am quoting from memory.The Bible has a lot to say regards freedom ,it tells us that we are all enslaved ,by the devil and by our sinful nature[ 2 Timothy 2v26/ John 8 v34 /.The situation was and is so desperate that God had to take desperate measures, in order to truly set people free, He sent Jesus.His purpose was to set people free. Jesus declared that He had come to set the captives free [ Luke 4v 18],He declared that He had come to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound.The good news of the gospel is that Jesus can set you free, for whom the son sets free is free indeed.
A  prayer....../ Dear God  we thank You for Jesus who can set us truly free Amen /

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Judging others [ John 8 v1-11]

Our Lord tells us clearly not to judge others [Matthew 7 v1-5 ],  He gives a warning as the consequence of judging others, that you will put yourself in a place where judgement will fall on you. How many times we see this in life, especially if one is a driver. Let me say this there are no perfect drivers,yet it is one place were people sit in judgement on others,they curse and become angry at other drivers, they judge to imperfect in their driving. This is  why our Lord tells us not to judge others,we all are imperfect human beings,when a fellow Christian falls into sin,we are inclined to judge, or they have characteristics that need changing.Let us be honest we have characteristics that need changing. May be our judging others helps us feel superior,but it doesn't it only causes us to put ourselves in jeopardy. If we look into the word of God ,read 1 Corinthians 13,and consider how short  we come as to love, consider the challenge of holiness, outward,but most important inward,we all have beams/ planks in our eyes, that need to be removed. The words of 1 Corinthians 11v31 , read, / For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged/
A  prayer..... /Dear God forgive us for our judgemental spirit grant that we will take seriously what our Saviour taught us about judgeing others Amen/

Monday, 19 November 2012

Witnessing. [ Acts 1 v8 ]

One of my sons told me of someone who said that witnessing is only the task of the evangelist,of  course this is utterly wrong ,when our saviour spoke the words go [Matthew 27v19],He did not say for just Evangelist to go. In Acts 8 we read of a time of persecution,men and women were suffering ,this caused them to be scattered everywhere, and in v4, we read that they went everywhere preaching the word.I don't thing I am an evangelist but I do know I am called to evangelise. It causes me great frustration that I don't tell more people about Jesus,there are no exemptions in the task of witnessing, it is all hands to the task. The gospel is not only a wonderful gift we have received, but it is a gift we are called to share with others. Yes we are not called to leave it to the professionals, yet  maybe in witness we will discover that we are an evangelist. I appreciate that we may find it hard to witness ,we may not feel like doing it, because of our natural reserve,or the fear of becoming unpopular,but God can help us, we have the Holy Spirit, who can empower us ,grants us the words to say,and can use us in ways we never expected.
A  prayer...../Dear Lord help us to be witnesses for You, with our words and our lives . Amen/

Sunday, 18 November 2012

Justice/ Mercy .[ Titus 3 v 1 -7 ]

  Gandhi said,,/ An eye for an eye only ends up making the whole world blind/,now I don't understand fully the situation between Israel and Palestine.but I sometimes think that both sides practise that biblical instruction,and it definitely appears that both sides are going to end up blind.I wonder what you think of these words an eye for an eye?,I would think it is a statement about justice,and of course we need justice.Now of course God is a just God , He is the ultimate judge we will have to do with, but He is also merciful, continually in the Bible we are reminded of Gods mercy. Again a quotation from William S  / The quality of mercy is not strained. It droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven. Upon the place beneath, it is twice blest. It blesseth him that gives, and him that takes./ We will always need justice, but we most surely always need mercy. I love the words of that old hymn by W .R, Newel./Years I spent in vanity and pride,caring not my Lord was crucified.Knowing not it was for me He died/That was once my condition , a sinner who was blind to Gods love in Christ, and if I remained like that I would only ever experience a just Gods wrath. But thankfully by Gods grace I was brought to a place of mercy as the chorus in that old hymn tells us. / Mercy there was great, and grace was free,pardon there was multiplied to me. There my burdened soul found liberty at Calvary./
A  prayer...../Dear God help us to appreciate that You demand Justice as regards sin, and hep us to see that the only way we can escape that justice is by accepting Christ as our Saviour, Amen /

Saturday, 17 November 2012

Music. [Psalm 23 ]

I have always loved the cinema,and recently I have observed how important the music is, and how it is written to express the theme and mood of the story line. When you have a western, you will have music that tells you  there is Indians involved,in scary movies ,you have music that adds to a sense of fear. Shakespeare wrote that all the world was a stage,maybe if he were writing to day ,he  would write that all the world is a movie which we are all part of,playing out our different rolls.The thought came to me, what music are we hearing and living by ? ,is it music that indicates we are scared,is it music that indicate danger?. Are we swayed or even controlled by the music? what drum beat are we marching to?,maybe we need to start listening to heavens music,the music of faith,peace,trust, holiness.It is not music written by Mozart ,but by the divine Spirit,it speaks to our heart, and tells us to be still and know that He is God,that tells us to trust and not be afraid,that tells us that ,our Lord is with us,if we really listen, we will be brought into a place of calm and still waters.
A prayer ...../ Dear God help us in a world of distorted music ,to listen to the sound of Heavens music, in Jesus name Amen /

Friday, 16 November 2012

The unforgiveable sin. [ Matthew 12 v31-32 ]

I heard someone say the words,/It is unforgivable/ in the bible our Lord tells His hearers  that,/ all manner of sin and blasphemy ,shall be forgiven unto men, but  the blasphemy ,against the  Holy Ghost shall not be forgiven unto them [/Matthew 12 v31 ] So many people have sought to answer what does it mean to blaspheme against the Holy Ghost?,this question has unsettled many dear.Christians, some have felt they had committed this sin and so were outside the mercy of  God.,these words were spoken to unbelievers, not to those who have trusted Jesus .These words are spoken as a solemn warning to a group of people who continually,opposed the truth,they heard, and miracles they witnessed, they also had the scriptures,yet in spite of that they rejected Jesus, not only rejected Him but attributed what He was doing was of Satan. In Psalm 95 we read these words,/ Harden not your hearts/that what Israel did in the wilderness and they were cut of from entering the promise land. Those in the wilderness had witness so much of Gods power yet in the end were cut of, likewise as I have said, the religious people had witness so much,yet in the end all they could do was blaspheme the Holy Spirit,they were so hard they didn't want Jesus nor would they acknowledge the Holy Spirit. They just refused to repent,and so cut themselves of from God,that which is not  repented of cannot , will not be forgiven.One commentator David Thomas wrote the following words which are very solemn,/The Bible does certainly teach that man may here arrive at a point in sin when salvation becomes impossible, that the day of grace closes with some before the day of life/.
A  prayer ...../ Dear God  have mercy upon those who put themselves in great danger as to their eternal souls in Jesus name Amen/

Thursday, 15 November 2012

BBC in crisis. [ Proverbs 2 v 6 ]

More heads will roll in BBC crisis, so read the headlines in the newspaper I read, it is all to do with people in the BBC acting unwisely or not acting wisely, it has caused a great stir in our country . It reminds me how easy we can be caught out and even caught on if we act unwisely,recently a top CIA person has resigned ,because he was involved in a extra martial relationship. As a Christian I am aware how easy it is to be caught out, and how we need Gods help in preserving us from all evil, and not to point the finger of judgement at others, but to pray for those who are in crisis,because of acting unwisely.As we start each day we should first of all pray,obvious this may sound but many people don't, next in our prayers we need to ask for wisdom , in James 1 v 5, if we ask God for wisdom , He will grant it to us. Then we need to act wisely, act on the wisdom God grants us, it is possible to be granted wisdom and to act contrary to it,the greatest example of a person who did this ,was Solomon [1 Kings 11]. In doing what he did Solomon brought terrible judgement on His people. Yes the cost of acting unwisely can be great,for us, no matter how great we may be,so today ask for wisdom from our all wise God.
A  prayer...../ Dear God keep us from acting unwisely ,grant us the wisdom we need, and give us grace to act on it, in Jesus name we ask this Amen/

Wednesday, 14 November 2012

Coming to terms with death. [ Psalm 23 ]

Are we ever going to come to terms with death? I read of an elderly man in Zambia who was told he had only a few weeks to live,he replied,/ God has been good to me/.I wonder what we would say if we were told we had just a few weeks to live?, considering that we are all going to die,many of us have never thought about it.The old puritans thought much about life, which in their days could be very short, but we are lulled into feeling we will never die. I  am not trying to be morbid but as a Christian the fact of death has been faced.How does one face death? ,well just like we face life, by faith,this is not a trivial statement, no it is because I found Jesus, I believe David who wrote the Psalms found Jesus and knew Him,if one reads the 23rd Psalm, one sees Jesus in it all,for the shepherd in the 23rd Psalm is none other than the good shepherd of the New Testament [ John 10] Knowing the shepherd affected David in so ways and especially when it came to death, and he declares,/Yea, though I walk through the valley of death, I will fear no evil, for thou art with me/
A  prayer...../ Dear God we thank You that Your dear son came and faced death, and conquered it, so that when we know Him, we need fear no evil, Amen/

Tuesday, 13 November 2012

Freely give. [ 2 Corinthians 8 v1-5 ]

I realise that in these days many are finding it difficult financially, for many unemployment looms up, and many are unemployed. I also receive news of the needs of many who have very, very little,in places like Africa, and other countries.The needs of this world are ongoing and never ending,what can we do?well we can pray,and if God has blessed us materially we can do our bit.Let us not be driven by guilt ,but let us never loose sight of our responsibility, to help others. We are not saved by our good works ,but is an evidence that we are saved, as James challenges us,when he says ,show me your faith by your works [ 2 v18 ]. Works are  a vital evidence that we are saved,we are saved by what Christ did not what we do. Paul in his letter to the church at Ephesus stresses the fact that we are saved by Gods grace 2 v8 ,not of works,but then he goes on to say that we have been saved unto good works, which God prepared in advanced for us to do [v 10].So being saved by grace is not a get out clause, not to help others,not to do good works, rather it is a challenge ,to help others, to bless as we have been blessed.
A  prayer...../ Dear God and Father we thank You for the free gift of salvation ,freely we have received, so help us to freely give , in Jesus name Amen /

Monday, 12 November 2012

The simplisity of the gospel [ 1 Corinthians 1 v 18 -31 ]

One of the people I admire is Billy Graham,in his time he has walked with presidents,and kings and queens,he was one of the most famous people on earth. There are people who have criticised him for different things,yes he was not perfect,tell me who is?,but here is the thing I really admire about him,he never departed from the simplicity of the gospel. The result is many ,many people came to Christ for salvation,maybe millions,my old pastor was a faithful preacher,he was not an academic, but there are those who came to know Christ, I and my first wife was restored under his ministry.Being an academic has its place ,we need such people, but we most of all need ,to hear that simple gospel. It was Paul who wrote these profound words , in Romans 1 v16/ For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God unto salvation, to everyone that believed.
A  prayer...../Dear God we thank You for your profound gospel ,and its simplicity , help us to never be ashamed of it,to always tell others be it  in pulpit,or wherever we come into contact with sinners ,we ask this in the name of Him who loved us and died for us , even Jesus Amen/

Sunday, 11 November 2012

Remember Him. [ Isaiah 53 ]

This is remembrance Sunday , when our country remembers those who give their lives in battle,my grandfather Holmes fought and was wounded in the battle of the Somme. This country has been involved in so many conflicts,and are involved even to this day in Afghanistan.Our Saviour said there would be wars and rumours of wars[ Matthew 24 v6 ], and so it has been, and so it will be,of course there are a number of reasons why this is so. As a Christian I remember a battle that took place over 2000 years ago, when a solitary man went into battle against the powers of hell,against sin,and that last great enemy ,death. That man of course was Jesus,and only He could defeat the powers of darkness,if He failed then those evil powers would have destroyed Gods creation,every human being on earth would have ended up in hell. But praise God He didn't fail,but he had to pay a terrible price ,He had to suffer untold pain and agonies,both physical, and spiritual,for in his death ,He bore the awful punishment for sin,which involved a depth of suffering we cannot never imagine.Who of us can understand the words of Isaiah 53 v 10,/Yet it was the will of the Lord to crush Him, He has put Him to grief /. In that crushing God poured His wrath upon Him, that it may not be poured out upon us,so today remember that warrior Jesus, who won the victory ,for all who trust in Him.
A  prayer.../ Dear God  we with grateful hearts remember Jesus our Saviour ,and would simply say, love so amazing so divine demands our souls our lives , our all Amen /

Saturday, 10 November 2012

Failures.[ 1 Peter 5 v10 ]

The successor to the present Archbishop of Canterbury has been chosen, his name is Justin  Welby,he was speaking on TV,and I was listening intently.He did mention the Lord Jesus and I am sure he loves Him, but he is the leader of a Christian group,of such diverse ideas.It is so easy to be critical and as an evangelical, to dismiss the whole thing,as unbiblical, and making no difference. What I  would encourage every Christian to do is pray, for this brother,and for the Anglican family. Well this brother did say something that I found meaningful,/ The grace of God is greater than our biggest failures/. We all know something about failure,as parents, husbands/ wives,the list goes on, well take on board what Justin said, for it is true. It is no accident that the hymn Amazing Grace is so popular,and will continue to be, for it reminds us all of a God of grace who is ever reaching out to all men, for in a real sense we are all failures.
A prayer...../Dear God, us failures come to you and ask for grace through Your son Jesus Amen /

Friday, 9 November 2012

Liberating love. [ I John 3 v1 ]

A group called Manford and sons, sing a song with the following words in it,/Love will not betray,dismay or enslave,but will set you free/.The sellers of drugs,be it tobacco,or whatever are only interested in one thing money,those who push the sex trade are only interested in money. Those who are involved in child abuse are only interested in self gratification,and so we go on,love is none of those things. If we want to see love in its fullest ,and total manifestation, we see it Jesus,we see it in his humility,forgiveness,kindness,and his sacrificial  death. All this was borne out of a love that is incomparable,and indescribable,and we can experience that love when by simple faith,we trust Him as our Saviour.That Love will always want what is best for us,it will never hurt us, never cause us to feel betrayed, and will set us free from the chains of selfishness,when one experiences this love, one will never be the same, this love will always bring a change for the better,always. The cry of so many is ,I want to be free,and yet they enslave themselves in so much that is destructive.God in His son Jesus in love can truly set us free,we can, let me repeat this, we can experience freedom through the love of God in Jesus.
A  Prayer...../ A  prayer....../ Dear God open the eyes and hearts of people to Your great liberating love in Jesus Amen/  

Thursday, 8 November 2012

Animal cruelty [ 1 Corinthians 2 v 9 ]

I read on the Internet about a orangutan in Borneo that had been shot a 100 times with an air gun, the poor old thing was rescued by conservation workers, and has survived her ordeal,although she is blind,she will be looked after for the rest of her life. It saddened me to read of such cruelty,by human beings inflicted on a animal,I do make a distinction between and animals.Animals our only there for time they don't have an eternal aspect to them,they are animals,purely and simple. Humans are made in the image of God, they are special,but unfortunately we do not always manifest that in our lives.There is a lot of good things in this world,but who knows when evil will erupt,in its most destructive force,and then we see that aspect of mankind's fallen nature that is so terrible.Even as Christians we can still be capable of evil deeds ,and so it will continue, until time will cease to be. The only hope for fallen man is the gospel of our Lord Jesus,through His atoning death He can transform us, and change us, for any person who  is in Christ  becomes a new creation. I am far from perfect, but one day I will be,one day I will no longer sin,no longer have the capacity for cruelty or evil. Until that day happens we can know victory over sin if we rely on Jesus and the grace of God.
A  prayer....Dear God we thank You for seeing as we really are,not through rose tinted glasses,but as sinners in desperate need of Your saving grace in Jesus Amen /

Wednesday, 7 November 2012

Waiting [ Proverbs 13v12 ]

I would like to stress again the importance of waiting,and the importance of patiently waiting for the answer to our prayerful desires.Consider the time between Genesis and Calvary,one may ask why did God not act sooner?but He didn't. He did have His appointed time,as John points out in his gospel in relation to Jesus death[ 7v30/8v20],there we read how His hour had not come,but in/ 12v23/17v1,/ we read Jesus declaring His hour had come. God will answer our prayers and fulfil His word in His appointed time,there are many reasons why this is so.on our part it is often vital that we grow spiritually.God will perfect that which concerns us by causing us in our waiting to trust Him, and to learn patience,God works in us ,that we will manifest to this world lives that which will glorify Him. In Proverbs 13 v12 we read of hope being deferred, now the word deferred means putting something off until a later time, Gods later time will come. So in the words of that great hymn by Katharina Von Schlegel,/ Be still, my soul, thy God doth undertake,to guide the future as He has the past. Thy hope,thy confidence,let nothing shake, all now mysterious shall be bright at last. Be still,my soul the waves and waves and wind still know,His voice who ruled them while here below/.
A  Prayer...Dear God help us learn the lessons You are teaching us in our time of waiting,in Jesus name Amen /

Tuesday, 6 November 2012

Waiting. [Habakkuk 2 v3 ]

After I passed my driving, I was thrilled how God  had helped me, but I had no car ,nor could I afford to buy one, yes we prayed, but we had to wait. Prayers are often granted after a time of waiting, this waiting can be a trial,it requires prayerful patience. When Jesus was told that Lazarus was ill He did not immediately rush off to  Bethany,no He waited and permitted Lazarus to die. That may appear cruel,or at the very least inconsiderate,,but not so ,Jesus always acted with a God purpose,remember the words of Habakkuk 2 v 3,/though it tarry, wait for it. Mary and Martha had waited ,oh ,He is bound to come, one can imagine them looking ,time and time again,hoping He would come,but He didn't and Lazarus died, and quickly,the body was placed in a tomb. Jesus if He came would be to late,or so it appeared to Mary 11v32,but waiting was all part of Gods plan and purpose,as the sisters would soon discover. Now what about that car,well one day a widow women pulled up beside me as I walked to church, and said I could have her little Morris Minor, yes delay was not denial.
A   prayer ...../ Dear God grant us the grace of patience,knowing that delay is not denial, in Jesus name /

Monday, 5 November 2012

You will see the glory of God. [John 11 v40 ]

Many years ago my then wife Eileen encouraged me to take driving lessons,our resources were very limited ,we could just about afford 10 lessons. I completed those lessons ,but just before I had finished them I put in for my test,we could not afford any more lessons,my driving was not very good,so much so that when I told my instructor ,he advised me to not do my test. I had received a promise from God that He would help me, so I went ahead with the test. On the day of my test I was very nervous,my wife and children were praying at home for me,and the Lord I believe give me favour with the man who was testing me, and I passed. What a blessing that was,when I was thanking God, I received this verse,/ Said I not unto thee, that if thou would est believe, thou shouldest see the glory of God/[John 11v40 ]I had passed my test but I had no car, and no money to buy one, but that's another story I will share that with you later.
A  prayer ..../ Dear God we thank You for helping us in so many ways,we thank You will continue to help us and we wll see Your glory, in Jesus name Amen/

Sunday, 4 November 2012

Deliverance. [ John 8 v 36 ]

Next Sunday will be remembrance Sunday in our country,a day in which we remember and honour those who died in so many wars and conflicts. Recently I have been reading the history of Nazi Germany, a cruel and very , very wicked regime,most of us know what they did to the Jews,but they committed so much evil in those countries they conquered. The plans they had for Britain where severe ,and so it is on this remembrance Sunday, yes we remember and honour those who died in defence of this country,but more than that we want to give unceasing thanks and praise to God, for preserving us as a nation. Sadly to say as with so many nations we are slowly and surely leaving God out of the equation,we are a secular society,not a spiritual society,a society that is threatened with a greater evil than the Nazi es,a forgetting about God, forgetting that our nation and all nations greatest need is deliverance from sin and its awful consequences,both for time and for eternity.
A  prayer.../. Dear God we thank You for preserving this nation,but we pray that You will forgive the sin of this nation in forgetting You, and earnestly pray that You would awake this nation to their great need to be delivered from their sin through Your son Jesus  Amen/

Saturday, 3 November 2012

Envy [ Proverbs 11v30 ]

I  found myself saying to a lady called Rosie, that I envied her, now why was that?,she is in many ways an ordinary person, why should I envy her?. The reason being is she has been used by God to lead many people to Christ,as I was talking to her she mentioned someone ,she was going to meet,who had just come to Christ, this person had been a prostitute and a witch.Rosie had witnessed to her and she had become a Christian, I was introduce briefly and she said she  loves Jesus. Do you never have a desire to see people come to Jesus? I do,Rosie said to me, stop envying and do it. The Lord knows I have tried, am I just ever going to be a sower, and very seldom a reaper?. Yes I envy Rosie, the word of God says he that winneth souls is wise. [Proverbs 11v30],this brings to mind an old hymn,/He that winneth souls is wise in the home beyond the skies, Ti's a blessed message oh the wondrous prize,he that winneth souls is wise/ Now Rosie is not a theologian ,there is nothing wrong with being a theologian , but she has heart for the lost.It also appears to me that she is led to the most needy,those who are broken and lost, maybe many of us are looking  in the wrong place.
A  prayer..../ Dear God ,lead us to some soul today,help us Lord to know just what to say,use us for Jesus thy dear sons sake Amen/

Friday, 2 November 2012

Judgment day looms. [ John 3 v16 ]

I read these words in one our national newspapers, EU judgement day looms, now that they be true, I don't know, but what I do know is, that there is a judgement coming.A person I work with asked me the question, /why are you glad you are gong to heaven,/ and I replied,because I am not going to hell. Now of course there are other reasons why I am glad I am going to heaven,I will be with my Saviour I shall at last see Him,and will truly be glory for me. But there is a hell, there is a place of eternal judgement, Christ reminds us of it continually in His ministry,He spoke of weeping and gnashing of teeth[Luke 13v28]. In Luke 16 we read of a rich man who found himself in hell a place of torments, and in Matthew 8 v12,Jesus speaks of those who would be cast out into outer darkness,and in Matthew 10 v28, He stressed the importance of fearing God above all others, because He has the power to destroy both soul and body in hell. So I am very glad that I am going to heaven and not to hell,the vast majority of people are living as if there is no God and no accountability, and no judgement, Acts7v 31, tells us that there is a day coming  when God will judge the world  by Jesus,yes judgement day is looming,so believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and you shall be saved[ Acts 16 v31 ]
A  prayer ...../Dear God we thank You for providing a way in which we can be saved from judgement through Jesus . Amen /

Thursday, 1 November 2012

Jesus is pleading [ Revelation 3 v20 ]

I have before me a little card with a picture of Christ standing outside a door and He carrying a lamp and He is knocking on the door ,waiting for it to be opened. It is of course taken from the Revelation of John chapter 3 v20, in this chapter Christ is speaking to the church at Laodicea. This church was a self satisfied church,materially they were prosperous ,but they had let this effect their relationship with Christ. Christ is pleading with them to open their eyes to their true condition,and once again see things with the vision of Christ their Lord. Along with His pleading there is a warning that their Lord will have chastise them,a sign of their sonship [ Hebrews 12]. Although they were in a deplorable state their Lord loved them and desired what was best for them, and graciously pleads with them  to respond. Consider the words of v2o ,consider what they are saying to you,/ Behold I stand at the door and knock, if any man hears my voice,and open the door,I will come in to him ,and will sup with him , and he with Me/.
 A  prayer......./ Dear Lord help us to be on our guard against anything that could exclude You,anything that lessens our love for You .Amen /

Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Football just a game. [ Matthew 6 v33 ]

I like football, I am to old to play, I did play when I was younger,not very well,but now I am TV spectator,and even though this is so, I still do my bit of shouting,and commentating on the game I am watching.Now there is one person who has the most difficult job, is the referee, one sport commentator,wrote of the referee as displaying a hellish combination of incompetence and arrogance. We rightly say, oh it is only a game,and of course it is but it seems it is a channel for people to have an opportunity to release all their pent up emotions,on the poor referee,the opposing team,and even the opposing supporters. One writer , writes in a newspaper,/Modern referees need the wisdom of Solomon, the patience of Job , the probity of Caesars wife./ Now this is about sport, just a game, yes a game that  I love, as  Christians we must not let things, like sport or other areas of life get out of proportion. I can think of two well known Christians who were exceptional sportsmen ,yet they led aside that passion for a greater passion their love of Christ, and His call on their lives.
A  prayer...../ Dear God help us to not let the lesser things have  control of our lives,in Jesus name Amen/

Dont be fooled. [Numbers 32 v 23 ]

I remember when I was a young lad and I smoked cigarettes ,breaking into a cigarette dispenser and stealing cigarettes, but I also remember the fear I had about being found out. At this time there are many ,many people doing things they shouldn't be doing,consider the all the things that may include,adultery,stealing,lying,murder,alcholism. In our country I have mentioned the sexual abuse  practised by a famous person,which only came to light when he died. This has opened a can of worms, and it seems he was not on his own,one person has been arrested,and many others are living in fear in case the hidden things come to light. In one national newspaper I read the following,/ Major stars from the sixties/seventies are terrified of being named in connection with the J/S child abuse scandal according to PR Max Gilford/ This all reminds me of the words of Numbers 32v 23 / Be sure your sin will find you out/, the word sin may not be politically correct, but things have not changed,sin is still ,and if not repented off and forgiven ,will be found out,  and will be judged by a holy God.
A prayer..... /Dear God help us to forsake our sins,our secret sins, before we are faced with them at Your judgement seat in Jesus name. Amen /

Monday, 29 October 2012

Work. [ Colossians 3 v17 ]

 My job as a support does not entail to much physical work,with the exception of one day when I help run a group,this does not mean that it is not demanding,it brings with it challenges,in relation to those suffering from mental illness. I remember many years  when working as a labourer and I was pushing a wheelbarrow that  someone in passing said hard work is not easy,I did not needed to be reminded of this as I struggled with that wheelbarrow. I read this morning about dear Christians in  Kuwait who are exploited ,they start work at 4.30 am  and work till 5.30 pm .Work is important but not always fulfilling, I am fortunate that my job is,but as I have indicated I have had not so nice jobs,but they help to feed my children and keep the wolf from the door. I thank God that I have been working for over 20 years in my present job,I have experienced unemployment, so I know both sides of the coin.Today if you have a job,thank  God, if your job is difficult,a boss who is not very nice,don't become discouraged,or bitter,commit it all to God,and if you are unemployed ,remember you are precious and of worth.
A  prayer...../ Dear God help us whither we are working or unemployed, in all things give thanks, in Jesus name Amen /

Sunday, 28 October 2012

Relationship [ 2 Peter v 3 ]

There are three more things that are of vital importance in facing all that life throws at us,now they may sound obvious,but it is often the obvious that we miss. Here they are,Prayer, Bible study,and fellowship with fellow believers,all these things will be a means of grace, which none of us can neglect,and if we do we will suffer.These things involve our relationship with God, and our relationship with our fellow believers, the  Christian life is about relationship,before we came to Christ we really did not have a relationship with God[ Isaiah 59v2/  Ephesians 2 v 12]. Christs death on the cross has made it possible for us to have a relationship with God,when we trusted Jesus as our Saviour,so a relationship began anew.Now we can come into the presence of God in prayer with utter and complete confidence [Hebrews 4 v16 ], the next is the bible and the importance of reading it regularly. There was a time in history that the bible was a banned book ,but that has changed now most of us have the bible,and we have to read it consistently,praying over its pages, and living out its truths in our lives. Next fellowship that means meeting with fellow Christians and having fellowship with them. If we neglect any of those things, we will suffer in our relationship,let we stress again it is all about relationship.
Dear God we thank  You for Jesus though whom we have been brought into a living relationship with You,we thank You that through Him and all Your resources we can cope with whatever difficulties or challenges we are faced with, we  thank You in Jesus name Amen /.

Saturday, 27 October 2012

We have the power. [ Romans 8 ]

I have in my garden solar lights and a neighbour has solar panels, they are powered by the sun,now it was our Saviour who said , that we would receive power by the Holy Spirit [ Acts 1 v8 ]. How am I going to cope with life?,by the power of the Holy Spirit,and let me say this ,that every Christian has the Holy Spirit, not just the Pentecostals,but every true child of God.One cannot be born again except by the Holy Spirit, the Holy Spirit will empower us to witness , and to live a godly life.He is called our comforter [John 14 v26 ]. It is Him who will grant us the power to cope [Ephesians 6 v10],in Ephesians 3 v20, we read of the power that worketh in us, that power is the Holy Spirit. In Galatians 5, the apostle writes about walking in the Spirit,of being led by the Spirit, and living in the Spirit.If you do not speak with tongues, it means that you don't speak with tongues,it does not mean you have not the Spirit of God, A clear evidence that we have the Spirit of God is by our fruits[ Galatians 5 v22-23/ Matthew 7 v16 ]As the sun empowers  solar lights and panels so the Holy Spirit can help you and I to cope with the difficulties and challenges of life.
A  prayer...../ Dear God fill us Your Spirit that we will be able to cope with the difficulties and challenges we have to face in Jesus name  Amen /

Friday, 26 October 2012

How can we cope?.[ Joshua 1 v 9 ]

We considered the fact that we all are faced with difficulties, the question is how are we to cope?,well the good news is we can,we may not think so, but we can.The reason I say this is because of what the scripture tells us,and of the experience of many of Gods dear children. How did Job cope with all that he suffered?how did David cope when being hunted and hounded by Saul?,how did Paul cope with so much?.Well you may have heard it before ,but we need to be reminded that we cannot cope in our own resources. It is God and His resources that alone can enable us to cope, and not only to cope ,but be triumphant. Now what resources has God granted us? first of all ,Himself,for has He not said that He is with us always[Matthew 28v 20],consider today that He is with you,and tomorrow He will be with you,and indeed for all your tomorrows He will be with you. We may feel that we are alone,but we are not,we have one with us who will never leave us nor forsake us. In the garden the disciples fled and forsook their Lord,but  their Lord never forsook them,Jonah discovered the wonderful truth,that although he had been unfaithful,God was faithful even in the depths of the sea and in the belly of the great fish.Give not in to morbid thoughts,let not the things of sight blind you to the great reality that only faith can grasp, that God hath said I will never leave you nor forsake you.
A  prayer....../ Dear God I thank You that we are not alone,that You are with us every passing hour,thank You in Jesus name Amen /

Thursday, 25 October 2012

Difficulties. [ Job 14 v 1 ]

It is so easy as we look at others to loose sight of the truth that they have difficulties to cope with ,Job had his looses,David had his Saul,Paul had his thorn in the flesh. In a sense no matter how great a person may be, no matter how godly,we are all without exception in the same boat.James reminds us that Elijah was a man,but he did so many powerful things,no, God did many powerful things in response to  his prayers. We must always give God the glory and remember that the greatest evangelist ,are but men,honour them but don't idolise them. Now says James, Elijah was subject to like passions as we are,in other words he had difficulties to deal with, just like us. So let let us not envy them,pray for them,and let us not think of any saint of God that they are  immune from difficulties. I used to have a book called  I think,/The crook in the lot/written by I think, Thomas  Boston,and in this book he pointed out that we all have to contend with something, that's difficult. This is so true, now having made that point the question is how can we cope, with those difficulties?,well  how?,we will consider this more next time
A prayer.... / Dear God help us to see that we are all faced with difficulties , that none are excluded from them,let us envy no one because of their apparent prosperity in Jesus name Amen /.