verse of the day

Tuesday, 31 December 2013

She looked back [Genesis 19 v26]

She looked back, why one may ask,curiosity?,what ever the reason,she disobeyed God,so it is with us, God commands us not commit adultery.In other words we not to get involved with someone who belongs to another,but you can think of many reasons why you should.Maybe you have been denied a physical relationship by the person you are married to,or you feel they neglect you, your reason may be legitimate.Yet God says thou shalt not commit adultery, He means just that. She did not obey God, she must not have taken God seriously,if she had , she would not have looked back,God is not double minded ,like we are,He must be taken seriously,and no matter how we try to rationalise disobeying Him,we will suffer,when Aarons sons offered their own mixture of incense to the Lord He slew them[ Leviticus 10],this must have shocked their father Aaron,they were his sons and he would have felt sorrow,he was told not to show any outward signs of mourning, hard thing to do, but they obeyed.She looked back and suffered as a consequence,what ever her reason, she disobeyed God,she was not ignorant,just disobedient,so today let us remember Lots wife .Genesis 19 v26/Luke 17 v32/
A  prayer ...../ Dear God grant us the grace to obey, help us not to lean upon our own understanding,in Jesus name Amen/

Monday, 30 December 2013

Sodom,Gomorrah, and judgement [ Romans 1 v 18 ]

Sodom and Gomorrah are remember for not only being a very wicked people ,but also for the judgement meted out them by Holy God.Some people wince at this account,delegating it to the God of the OT, which is not only a shame,but an unbiblical way of interpreting this whole event.for if we read various scriptures, we see that God changes not....CP/ 2 Thessalonians 1 v8-9/ 2 Peter 3v10./   In Gen 18 v20 we read the reason for the judgement, /their sin is very grave/, let us look on sin as God looks on it,society can change its laws,as it sees fit,but God does not change His law to accommodate man. As we read this account of God destroying these cities ,be very careful not to charge God with wrong doing,Abraham reminds us,/Shall not the judge of the earth do right?[Gen 18 v25 ]. The answer is an emphatic yes,let none of us forget this,in chap 16/19 we read of the mercy of God,why was only three people saved, in Exodus33v19/Romans 9 v 18,we read God declaring that he will have mercy, on whom He will have mercy. F.L.Godet writes of a free initiative on Gods part....but without a shadow of arbitrariness.The God of love desires that all men may be saved and that they may come to a knowledge of the truth,He is long-suffering to us ward, not willing that any should perish,but that all should come to repentance.Remember God knows the whole story,we don't,those people had a righteous man living in their midst, Lot,whom they ignored[2 Peter 2 v8-9 ].
A  prayer...../ Dear God we praise You for Your mercy,and acknowledge that You will have mercy on whom You will have mercy, through Your dear Son Jesus Amen/

Sunday, 29 December 2013

Is anything too hard for the Lord? .[Genesis 18v14 ]

Children have an expectation that their dads can do anything,but they cant,people have an expectation that science,and the medical profession have all the answers ,but they don't.A very elderly couple were told something by God that appeared impossible,but it wasn't,they were told they were going to have a child a son.The man questioned it and the women laughed at such a thing,but then they were challenged with the following words,/Is anything too hard for the Lord?/.[Genesis 18 v14 ]. Has God promised you something and it has not come to pass?,do you you thing it has gone beyond the point were God can do what He promised.Have you lost sight of the promise?,has it become buried in the history of the past?. Do you think it does not apply to you now?you have learned to live with that problem,whats the point of hoping?,you may be asking yourself ,forget about it,it will not happen. Maybe like Sarah as you read this blog you are think God is mocking you,well He is not,first of all what he says He will do,and what He says He can do,time will not change that fact,it has not weakened His power to do what He promised you. Is there anything too hard for the Lord?,what He cant do, is lie,His character forbids that,no matter how hard it may appear to you, and me, God is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or thing according to the power that worketh in us[ Ephesians 3 v20]
A  prayer..../ Dear God grant us faith to believe what You have promised,that You will make it good,help us to grasp the truth that there is nothing to hard for you, in Jesus name Amen /

Saturday, 28 December 2013

Our exceeding great reward.[ Genesis 15 v1 ]

/The word of the came unto Abram in a vision,saying,fear not,Abram, I am thy shield,and thy exceeding great reward /[Genesis 15v1] Let us consider these wonderful words,spoken to Abram,he is called Abram, but that would change to the more familiar Abraham,meaning father of many nations.God spoke in a vision,the general way He speaks to us now is by the Bible,now we cannot rule God out speaking us in a vision,or a dream,but the norm is through the Bible.This is the safest way,as the word of God is a finished revelation,so it rules out any other so called word of God,the Koran ,book of Mormon,etc. In speaking to Abraham,He declares I am thy shield,in other words God would protect him,as with Abram so with every dear child of God,you may not have a big brother to protect you ,but you have a big God. As J .Calvin wrote,/He will defend us,preserve us,and protect us by His power.Next He says that he is his ,exceeding great reward, mankind myself included have an on going appetite that never appears to be satisfied,the natural man try to satisfy there lives with everything and anything,the words of our Saviour are so true, the natural things cannot satisfy[John 4 v13]. So God reminds Abram that He is his exceeding great reward,and these words remind us,as so often we need to be reminded,that He is our exceeding great reward,let us continually bear this in mind,and not be blinded to lesser things.
A  prayer..../Dear God we thank You for the many blessings we enjoy,but most of all we thankful for You,in Jesus name we pray this Amen/


Friday, 27 December 2013

Be sure your sins will find you out. [ Revelation 21 v 8 ]

A famous entertainer ,who was much loved and admired,has been charged with sexual offences,not so long ago he painted our queen,and from that moment on his paintings became very expensive,and much sought after,now they will only be fit for the bonfire.This entertainer is aged 83 his past has caught up with him,one commentator on the teaching or philosophy of Machiavelli ,said he did not teach,that your sins will find you out.But the bible teaches that they will as many sex offenders are finding out, I will add not just in this world, but eternity.We cannot escape the consequences of our sinful actions,we may as many people do ,escape human justice,but we are told that there are two appointments we will all keep,the first is death, and the next is judgement [Hebrews 9v27].On that day of judgement all our history will be judged,every sin will be laid bare,our very thoughts,words and deeds,all will be brought out into the light.The Great judge Jesus will pass sentence,and the sentence will not be for 10,20,or 50yrs,it will be for all eternity,it will a dreadful fate. Do not think it will just be the sex offenders who will be judged,no all have sinned[Romans3 v23],and all will be judged.But the good news is God is merciful,and had provided a way of escape,the judge that will be in eternity,is now the Saviour in time.All who seek mercy,who call upon the name of the Lord will be saved,every sin will be forgiven,
A  prayer...../Dear God we rejoice that you are faithful,loving and kind,but you  are  also righteous ,and will judge all those who sins have not been forgiven ,have mercy ,in Jesus name Amen/

Thursday, 26 December 2013

Finishing school. [ Psalm 138v8 ]

For great deal of my life I have lived with an aggressive nature,it goes back to my childhood,like many things,it has dogged my life,but God who saves sanctifies,and generally speaking I am an amiable person.I can remember getting into scraps as a youngster,this was nothing out of the ordinary, as a child one sought to cope as best as one could. Among those I remember where those who appeared to want to fight others,I supposed to some extent I copied them,it was not easy growing up.Even as a Christian I still  feel aggression,and sadly show it, old habits die hard, old characteristics still cling to me. Maybe it even came across in my preaching,all I can say it is there,but God has his means of changing me, the dear Holy Spirit lives within me.He through different means ,has and is changing me,I am not the person I used to be,but I not yet the person I want to be,and indeed long to be. I know that until I die I will be imperfect, but the scriptures assures me that God will perfect that which concerneth me,for He is merciful.[Psalm 138 v8].God finishes what he commences,yes it may be hard to take in,but He will,He is faithful,I am confident of this very thing,that He which hath begun a good work in me, will continue it,until it is finally finished ,on the day when  Jesus returns[Philippians 1 v 6]
A  prayer../Dear God burn up the dross in our lives, help us not to loose confidence in your promise to perfect that which concerneth us, through Jesus Christ our Lord Amen/

Wednesday, 25 December 2013

Man of steel? [Isaiah 9 v6 ]

I watched the movie man of steel ,the latest superman blockbuster,it appears to me be it superman,or spider man,or some other man,there is underlying feeling for a saviour,someone who can save the world from destruction. I wonder why?could it be that there is an underlying feeling of doom,that we will be overtaken by our own greed and destructiveness,where is our fairy godmother?,who will come and put everything right. And so we center our eyes on certain individuals,or nations,as our saviours,only to find out like Superman,they have their weaknesses,the man of steel has feet of clay.Consider the following words, from an old testament prophet, Isaiah /For unto us a child is born,unto us a son is given,and the government shall be upon His shoulder,and His name shall be called,Wonderful,Counselor,the mighty God,the everlasting Father,the Prince of peace.[9v6].Yes I am speaking about Jesus the Saviour of the world,are you looking for a saviour?look no further,look to Jesus,the one who came to seek and save all who are lost.
A prayer..../Dear God the world does need a saviour, and we thank You that in love sent Jesus Amen /

Tuesday, 24 December 2013

Blessings. [ Romans 8 v 35ff]

It is Christmas eve,and it brings back many memories of when our children where young,of decorating the living room,of putting the Christmas tree up,of cooking the large turkey overnight.Of going to bed and hoping the children did not waken to early, to see what presents they would get,they were good memories,which I treasure. Thank God for those good memories ,but my mind turns to Syria ,and to Gods dear children there,and the Christians in North Korea,the threat hanging over them,of those in prison cells in Iran,Pakistan,and in many other places. Many of these dear people will only have bad memories,the only present many of them will receive ,will be a beating,or even worse. Christ did not come into a nice world, there was no welcome mat for Him,in fact there was  only a poor manger,out of the ivory palaces into a world of woe,that sums it up.Yet in that strange poverty for Him,God was bringing into place ,an event that would bless all mankind, that blessing would transform the lives of millions and millions,hope,peace,love,joy.Nothing can change or remove those blessings ,not beatings,imprisonments,poverty,yes and even death,for nothing can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
A  prayer..../ Dear God we praise You for Jesus, and the blessings that You grant to those who trust in Him. Amen /

Monday, 23 December 2013

He has walked the walk, [ Luke 10 v 30-35]

As a number of Christians and I sang a carol ,I was struck by the following,words ,/From the poor manger to the bitter cross/. Those words reminded me very clearly of Christs humiliation ,of His purpose in coming to planet earth,to become one of us,no more can people point the finger at God and say, You do not understand.For He who is truly God experienced ,what we experienced,He was born ,lived and died, He knows what life is about,and so He understands the human situation.While many do care for those who suffer,because of poverty,injustice,and different types of sickness,many do not care,in many poor countries,there are millionaire's,who don't help those they could easily help.Christ truly understands the suffering of mankind.I was watching TV recently,and a reporter was speaking was speaking to a homeless drunk person,and by all accounts will die of an alcohol related death. I got emotional  ,and shed a tear. If I felt that way how much more must our Saviour feel, as he observes all the suffering in the world,and how much He must long to embrace every lonely,sick,and suffering human,you see He is the Christ of the human road.From that poor manger to that  bitter cross,Christ attended to so much suffering,and now He truly understands,so when we come to Him,He feels our pain,and longs to take us into His arms,to tell us how much He cares and understands, what we have to endure ,in our every day life.
A  prayer....../Dear God have mercy upon this world of suffering,we thank You for Jesus who truly understands just how we feel Amen/

Sunday, 22 December 2013

Come let us worship Christ. [ Isaiah 9 v 6]

Idols is a favourite word that people used to describe those who entertain us,I have heard people say about their idol. Now they  were not talking about  a little stone statue,but a fallible human being,often very ordinary people have greatness thrust upon them. Like so many people who are famous,their every move is observed,and just like us they do not handle their fame,and the wealth that comes with it. So why worship such flawed human beings, why indeed?,but people do,you see they have what so many want,riches ,fame, and even a degree of influence. I noted one of things Nelson Mandela said,/I am not a saint ,but a sinner,great though he was, he maintained a humility ,and  self effacement.Those who are puffed up with pride,are  like a balloon that will soon be deflated with a bang.So many idols are truly fallen idols,and must be seen for what they are sinners,the best of men or women are but fallen creatures,not even to be admired. The commandments of God forbids the making of idols [  Exodus 20v 4-5], that includes people,and forbidding the worship of such. [CP Acts10v 25-26],this also includes the worship of angels[ CP Hebrews 1 v1-14/ Revelation 19 v 9-10] One of the first things the wise men did when they came to Jesus was to worship Him,but you may say, Jesus was human yes He was, but He was also God with us [CP Isaiah 7 v14/ Matthew 1 v23]. So take your eyes of sinful humanity,and fix them firmly on the only true object of worship, Jesus.
A prayer ...../Holy Father turn us from the worship of sinful men and their sinful ways,and give unto Jesus the worship that is His due Amen /

Saturday, 21 December 2013

Mankinds limitation. [ Job 19v 25]

It  was Archimedes who cried out , eurek'a, which means I have found it, he discovered something that no one else had found.Science is an incomplete activity,there will always be more to discover,and yet scientist often speak as if they have all the answers. The fact is they don't,no  one knows everything,there are so many questions and so few answers,I was speaking to a lady whose daughter is suffering from a severe illness ,and the medical profession cannot diagnose the cause.We are all being fooled into thinking that science will discover all the answers,,but they wont,the seriously ill person will be told there is nothing more we can do. Now of course there is much they can do for people ,there have been wonderful discoveries made,but it will always have limits. The mind is a wonderful thing,mankind has discovered so much that is truly astounding, but it is limited,so where does that leave mankind,if science has not got all the answers?, or the medical profession cannot cure mankind?.It appears to me that if we put our hope in science,or the medical profession,and exclude God the creator,we are on a road that is leading us nowhere.
A  Prayer..../Dear God we thank You that even though we are limited in knowledge,we can know You and know where we are going, through Jesus Your dear Son Amen/

Friday, 20 December 2013

Choose the right [ 1 Kings 18 v 21]

In a movie I was watching ,the actor spoke the following words, /Soon there is coming a time when we will have to choose between what is right and what is easy/..Lets face it ,most of us choose the easy way,we use our car to go to the local shops,instead of walking ,missing out on some needed exercise. When our country was faced with a blinded bitter Germany,ruled by a mad man, we sought to take the easy way,but there came a moment when we had to choose what was right,and we did. It is east to rationalise the easy, I deserve the easy, let others choose the right,the right will cost me, my family will not approve,why should I stick my head up above the parapet?.When Dr M .L.King took a stand against racial injustice,there where many even among his fellow black ministers,who cautioned him to wait.His reply was,/This wait has almost meant never,we must come to see, with one of our distinguished jurist,that justice ,too long delayed is justice denied/ There is an old hymn which says ,trust in God and do the right,our Saviour,made it clear by his life, and death,that the right took precedence,over the easy. When Polycarp was asked to swear that Caesar was lord,or be put to death,he choose death by burning,  all he had to do was take the oath,easy ,but not right.
A  prayer...../ Dear God we so like the easy way,help us to always choose the right, in Jesus name Amen/

Thursday, 19 December 2013

Rudolph was bullied. [ Genesis 45 v 1-5]

Poor Rudolph he had a very shiny nose,the result was he was bullied,the other reindeer's ,they laughed at him and called him names,and they excluded him from the in group,he was not invited to play in any of their games. I wonder if you have ever been bullied?,my youngest boy was  bullied, he managed to get through school,but it was not easy. Being bullied can seriously effect young people,and it is continual,for when the children go home and get on their computer ,they are still bullied. Coming back to poor old Rudolph why did the all kind Santa not challenge those other reindeer's.Well that's only a song,it's not real ,but unfortunately  for many children it is real, and indeed, for a lot of people it is real,women are bullied by husbands . The banks have come under fire in this country again,because of the methods they use on their staff,wherever it is found bullying is wrong,big countries bully small countries.So today let us speak out against bullying,and let us act against it, and let us pray for those inadequate people who bully others. Let us also support the bullied in every way possible,let us remember poor Rudolph who was derided, and excluded.
A  prayer....../ Dear God help those whoever they ,that are been bullied,deal with those who are bullying, in Jesus name Amen./

Wednesday, 18 December 2013

Hidden burdens [1 Peter 5 v7 ]

Many of us carrying in our hearts hidden burdens,the other evening I let my guard down and showed my emotions,after this ,I found myself wishing I had not  opened up,the way I did..It reminds me of the saying men don't cry,it may be there is a degree of truth in that saying,only a degree of truth. Jesus was called a man of sorrows,and He was not ashamed to weep openly,the prophet Jeremiah was called the weeping prophet. The hidden burdens we carry involve many things, bereavement, health,material things,caring for a loved one with dementia, singleness,divorce,being cut of from your children,a hurt from someone who you considered your friend,loneliness. Hidden burdens ,yes there are many who are carrying heavy ,hidden burdens,and carrying them all alone,I was watching a movie recently,an old man was angry, Christmas  had highlighted,and  increased his pain. In this movie he was going on angerly at a young woman,when all of a sudden it all stopped when she went over to him and gave him a hug,it didn't take away all the hurt he was feeling,but it did make a difference.People need others to care,and we should not underestimate this,which brings me to the season of Christmas,poor Christmas so much is loaded unto it,but the season does not love you,but the core meaning of Christmas is love,in the person of Jesus.This Jesus manifests Gods Love in its fullness,and longs for all of us to let Him come and gave us the biggest and greatest hug,we have ever had or experienced.
A  prayer..../ Dear God ,You sent Your dear son into this world,that we may experience Your love,thank You Amen/

Tuesday, 17 December 2013

Cool eyes.[ Ephesians 5v 21-26]

I must confess I love old cowboy movies,where the goody always gets the girl,and always deals with the baddy.I was watching recently a cowboy and Indian movie,when the hero fell for an Indian girl,well he had gone a way to deal with business, when he came back she expressed her concern that his eyes had cooled toward her, in other words his love for her,was not what it once was. It is said that   the eyes are the windows of the soul,in her case they were the windows of the heart,of the one she loved. I wonder what does your eyes reveal,as regards your love for the one you are married to,have your eyes cooled?. Have your eyes started to wonder,as you look at the one you married years ago ,no longer are they prince ,or princess charming,their snoring has worn you down.Well the list could go on,but in the end,the saying is true,no one is perfect, that means you and that means me.Here is a word for us,first the wives,love your husband,even though he might be a right Charlie instead of a prince charming. Husbands,love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church,and gave himself for it.
A  prayer..../ Dear God grant us to be faithful to the one You have given us,to love them as You love us in Jesus name Amen./

Monday, 16 December 2013

Jesus Christ Superstar.[ 1 John 3 v1]

I help run a club once a week,it is related to my job,I see it as very important as a number of those who attend have very little social contact,they all suffer,from some degree of mental illness.So the club gives them the needed opportunity to meet others,it gives me great joy,to stop and listen to the sound of talking,and laughing.My colleague and I make them a nice meal,I jokingly say she makes them a meal that is good for them,plenty of veg,I make them a meal that they like,chicken burgers ,baked beans. We will all be going to a local pub soon,where they will enjoy a nice Christmas dinner,and they will all receive a box of sweets.It all sounds very nice,and it is,I have been very privileged  to have such a job,or maybe such a vocation.many ,many times,I thank God for the position He granted me.A funny thing happened recently at the group,one of the group said to me,how long have you been following Jesus Christ Superstar?. He was not meaning to be funny,or offensive,but it made me think, he is right Jesus is a superstar,He is the brightest star in all the universe,and I love Him to bits,and here is the most wonderful thing He loves me to bits,and He also loves you to bits
A  prayer...../ Dear God we thank you for Jesus Your Son,truly a superstar, but much more a Saviour, Amen /.

Sunday, 15 December 2013

Open our eye.[ Romans 1v16 ff]

I was driving back to my office,it was just beginning to get dark,the sun was setting,and I found myself admiring this sunset,in Ibiza many flock to the beach to admire the sunset.Sometimes one wonders how people can look at a beautiful sunset,and yet deny the God who created that sunset,but they do.Millions and millions of people go through the motions each day,and their vision is totally earthbound. Such is the fallen nature of mankind,a nature that distorts our mind,and our desires, that sees only the creation,but fails to see the creators handy work.,everyone is born with spiritual cataracts,and until the great surgeon operates and removes these cataracts, their spiritual blindness  will continue on, as stumble into hell,forever lost.It is not enough to admire a sunset,or whatever,no, there is a greater reality.There is a point in that lovely story, Wind and the willows,when Ratty and Mole have an experience,of a presence as they walked up the banks of a stream,in the moonlight,and the sky was cloudless.Everything took on a different meaning,it was as if there was a music in the air,and it touched their innermost being,it was the greatness of the creator,and the flowers and the grass where viewed in a new way.Mole asks his friend Rat in a whisper,are you afraid? .Afraid,murmured the Rat,his eyes shining with unutterable love. , afraid of Him? O, never,And yet- and yet-O, Mole, I am afraid.Then the two animals, crouching to the earth,bowed their heads and did worship.
A prayer...../ Dear God,we worship You as creator of all things,but you are more,so much more,You are the God of salvation in Jesus by whom all things where created. Amen/

Saturday, 14 December 2013

Be thou faithful [Revelation 2 v 10]

How importance do you rate faithfulness?in Revelation 2v8ff we have our Lord speaking to a church,Smyrna,a church under great pressure,the Lord knew what they where going through.He speaks of their tribulation and poverty,this church was near Ephesus,my study Bible says,that they faced persecution from a hostile Jewish population,and a non-Jewish population,who were loyal to Rome and supported emperor worship. So what does our Lord say to this church?and what does He say to us as we suffer,?move,leave,no,He does not even give them an assurance that they will be rescued,although He speaks of ten days,indicating that although the persecution would be intense it would came to an end. Until this happens ,our Saviour tells them,to be faithful even unto death[v10],reminding them and us of the vital importance of faithfulness.Are you suffering ?,are you in a trial,are you wishing that you could escape ?,the word to you and to me is this ,be faithful come what may.even until the day we die. Jesus reminds them of their heavenly reward,remember it will be worth it all when we see Jesus,it really will.
A  prayer..../Dear Lord Jesus help us all to be faithful even to the day we die. Amen/

Friday, 13 December 2013

Christ our foundation. [Romans 7v25. -8vv1]

In Romans seven Paul writes about the struggle he experience in his daily walk with Christ,he had a desire to do good, but it was not easy,evil is present. Can we not all identify with Paul? I know I can, I don't suffer persecution but I do at times feel under attack,and am so conscious,that I could so easily fall into sin, of the most gross kind. Yes I want to do good,but the flesh is ever present,will it get the victory,it did with David,if him why not me. I am no David,he was a godly man,a man who penned those wonderful Psalms,yet he fell into the most awful of sins[ 2 Samuel  11]. If he fell what chance do I have?,like Paul I cry out,/O wretched man that I am,who shall deliver me from this body of death?/,again a mighty apostle crying out,none of Gods children are no matter if they be apostles,or ministers,free from temptation,there are no exceptions.Inspite of his struggles Paul tells us ,and himself,that even though he was  weak,yes and struggling,he was no longer condemned ,because of Jesus[Romans 8 v1].When we are bombarded with temptation,think awful thoughts,we would want no one to know,we may think that we are not saved, that we must not be a Christian. Take heart dear child of God,Paul reminds us that through Christ we are accepted,and that Christ is our foundation.
A  prayer..../ Dear God we rejoice that in Christ we will never be condemned Amen /

Thursday, 12 December 2013

Christmas.[ Isaiah 53]

What is the meaning of the season?,will it end with just memories,or meaning?,will it end with your glass empty or your glass full?.Will the words merry Christmas sound very hollow?,will at the end of it, will you be saying whats the point of it?.Now I am not meaning to discourage you,I do hope you all have a happy Christmas,but the fact of the matter is,seasons come and seasons go,and what are we left with?.The puritans banned the keeping of Christmas I wonder why?could it be that they saw ,that instead of reminding people of Christ,it exalted only the season.Is that not whats happening in our society today,now I am  not saying that I would ban Christmas,even if I ruled the world,but I am saying,without the true meaning it has no meaning,eating drinking,buying and selling,cannot take the place of Christ. It becomes even less meaningful if you cannot afford ,to eat drink,and buy, I am not attempting to be Scrooge,yes enjoy  Christmas,it is a time of rejoicing,and in our rejoicing ,let us  proclaim the true meaning of the season,that babe in a manger who grew to manhood,and died on a cross,that our sins may be forgiven,His name is Jesus.
A prayer..../ Dear God we praise You for the true meaning of Christmas, Jesus,the Saviour of the world Amen/

Wednesday, 11 December 2013

A shiver down ones spine.[ Revelation 3 v8]

Just as I am , an imperfect person ,so the church is an imperfect church,be it the OT church or the NT church. Two of the seven  churches in Revelation escape warnings,that is not to say they were perfect,for there are no perfect churches,but one day there will be.[Ephesians 5 v27],until then the church must strive after perfection.Christ is ever watching over His church,and speaking to it .That includes local churches,national churches, and the whole church universal,not only is He watching over it, it is vital that the church must listen,the consequences of not listening are clearly shown in scripture.There is  no church in Ephesus's only ruins,places that have known revival,are now practically empty shells,why is that?,why have the leaders not listened and acted upon the Spirit speaking?.Consider what happened in Germany ,in the 20th century,I highlight Germany, as it was the country of the reformation.Early in the 20th century a German general said,that the German people were destined to become the master race,who would rule over lesser breeds and rule the world..A British  historian said,/That it was hardly conceivable,that after2000yrs of Christian teaching,and in the midst of a people from whom sprang some of the greatest thinkers,and some of the greatest scientific benefactors of the human race,that such opinions could find expression/. But it did come to pass ,who can tell what will come to pass when a so called Christian nation,or a Christian church forsakes Gods truth,and is not willing to listen or heed Gods voice,the thought sends a shiver down ones spine
A prayer...../ Dear God grant unto Your people the humility to listen to Your voice,and the grace to respond in obedience in Jesus name Amen /.

Tuesday, 10 December 2013

Winter is coming.[Jeremiah 8 v20 ]

The winter is gradually coming in where I live,in other parts of our country,and in Scotland it appears to have arrived.In this part of the world,we have 4 seasons,winter,spring,summer and autumn ,there is an old Irish song with the following words in it,/the summers gone/,and it really has.In the book ,/The wind and the willows/, Ratty is speaking to a swallow,now swallows leave our country in the winter,and Ratty says would it not be better if he stayed,instead of flying south,the swallow replied,that he did attempt to do this,he waited behind when all his fellow swallows flew away.For a couple of weeks it was nice,but then it became and cold,and so he knew he had to fly south.,and with great difficulty he reached his destination,and then he said,/I have had my warning,never again did I think of disobedience/. If only like that little swallow we could say,I have had my warning, never again did I think of disobedience.Remember when it comes to disobedience there is always a price,and when it comes to disobedience with Gods will,there is most certainty a price to pay. Let us heed the warnings,Christian heed the warnings,if you are not a Christian heed the warnings. Jeremiah the prophet continually warned people to change to return to God,but they never did,and so we have him saying,/The harvest is past,the summer is ended,and we are saved[Jeremiah 8v20]/,my dear reader ,heed the warning, for winter is coming.
A  prayer...../Dear God  grant us grace to heed the warnings ,in Jesus name Amen /

Monday, 9 December 2013

Machiavelli [ 1 John 4 v16/ Daniel 12v 2]

I wonder if you have ever heard of Machiavelli?, I must confess that until the other evening I had never heard of him,there was a program on TV about him. I found it fascinating and instructive,he was  born near Florence in the 15th century he owes his fame to one book called the Prince.This small book has influenced many people,Stalin,and many other people,this book is an instructive manual as to how those in power should rule,but one can apply it to anyone.One well known saying that gives us an idea about this book is,/The end justifies the means/,even if the means is destructive,lacking in love,Machiavelli stressed that it was not necessary to keep ones word,don't worry about virtue,concern yourself with results. He taught that it was better to be feared than loved,to designate others to perform the dirty work,Hitler and his followers,it appears to me followed many of the principals led down in the Prince.He did not believe the Biblical truth, be sure your sins will find you out,and never took into account that God will judge the wrongs we do. So much for Machiavelli,let me tell you of a better way,love worketh no ill,and will not accept that the end justifies the means. To the natural man the teaching of Machiavelli has an attraction that appears to get results,but it takes little account of the awful price others will have to pay,the lives and rule of Stalin,Hitler and many others prove that. We all need to remember that God will judge ,our evil deeds, and that Christ suffered the most awful evil,for our good,He harmed no one,and in that death He manifested love of the greatest degree, for you and me.
A prayer....Dear God help us all not to be taken in by deceitful and destructive words,and to old fast to your word,we ask this in Jesus name. Amen/

Sunday, 8 December 2013

God is looking. [Ezekiel 22v30]

In Ezekiel 22v30 we read,/And I sought for a man among them,that would make up the hedge,and stand in the gap before Me for the land,that I should not destroy it,but I found none/ The situation in Israel was so bad that Judgement was coming, as J.B.Taylor writes,the leaders were ungodly and those who should  have been godly had compromised their position. As I look at our nation and its leaders,I am very sad,laws are being passed that go against Gods holiness,even the so called national church,are running with the flavour of the day. How long I have looked for the leaders of our national church to take a clear stand,to point our nation to Christ,but it has not happened.God has no desire to pass judgement on any nation or person,but He will,it seems strange that the sovereign God should be looking for a man ,whom He would use to hold back His judgement,but He was,and He could find no one. William Gurnall wrote, /The power of holiness  has deteriorated among us,compared to what it was a generation ago/,ancient words ,that have a ring of truth about them  for these dark times.Yet I believe God is still looking for a man to stand in the gap../When Martin Luther foresaw the black  clouds of God's judgement coming towards Germany,he told friends that he would do his best to keep it from falling in his lifetime,and he believed that it would not. But he concluded,when I am gone, let them that come after me look to it./Sad to say they didn't , sin will inevitable bring judgement,righteousness exalts an nation,let us pray that God will raise up a man to stand in the gap, for the need of the hour is desperate.
A  prayer......./Dear God have mercy ,raise up your man to stand in the gap, in Jesus name Amen/


Saturday, 7 December 2013

Slow to anger [ Micah 7 v18 ]

The book of Nahum is about God judging Assyria,Nineveh being the capital,that city had received great mercy ,when Jonah had prophesied against it,but it was only a temporary repentance. Here we have this city,returning to its former wickedness,why did God not destroy them sooner?, because says Nahum,the Lord is slow to anger.Why does God not act against this sinful world,because He is slow to anger,we should be grateful for this fact,for it were any other way,who among us would stand.I look back on my life and praise God, for being slow to anger. I love the words of  Micah 7  v18.  / Who is a God like unto Thee, that pardoneth iniquity,and passeth by the transgression of the remnant of  His heritage? He retain eth not his anger for ever, because He delighteth in mercy/. I  like those last words,/He delighteth in mercy/.Nineveh had forsaken Gods mercy, and as Henrietta. C. Mears, writes, when mercy is unheeded ,it will eventually bring Judgement upon this backsliding people.Think not that God will ignore evil, no , as Nineveh would find out,and as indeed all who forsake God, will find out. In spite of this for all who forsake their sin and seek forgiveness through Jesus Christ, God will truly delight to show mercy.
A  prayer...../ Dear God we thank You for Your patience with mankind,that You are slow to anger ,and delighteth in showing mercy to all who seek Thy forgiveness, through Jesus Amen /

Friday, 6 December 2013

A battle of the wills.[Jonah 4 v2]

The person of Jonah is an interesting person,what did he hope to gain by running away?,in fact the book of Jonah throws up interesting revelations about God.. As God reveals Himself  in this book,we see clearly the mercy of God,it is very,I stress very unfortunate that some Christians appear to have a God of the OT and a God of the NT.So let me stress God in the OT is merciful,loving,forgiving,and gracious,He does reveal His wrath against sin,and people are made to realise that ,God is to be feared and not to be taken lightly. Make no mistake He has not changed,God is still merciful,loving,forgiving,and gracious,and all people everywhere can experience this through Jesus His son.For those who reject His salvation through Jesus His Son, will experience the wrath of God,let no one be fooled about this. Jonah knew that God was  gracious,merciful,slow to anger,and extremely kind[4v2]. He also knew that God was a God who judged sin,and that is what he desired God to do,he wanted this nation,who where a very wicked and cruel people,to be destroyed and cast into hell.  But it did not happen and  Jonah knew it would not happen,he hoped so much that it would  happen,but He knew his God,in some ways he had a balanced view of God. The problem lay in Jonah he just could not come to terms with the fact that God,would spare such a wicked people, but to Jonah's dismay and displeasure, He did.
A  prayer......./ Dear God forgive us our blind stubborn ways,help us not to as it were spilt You in
two,but to accept You as You really are,and not according to our likes and dislikes,in Jesus name Amen


Thursday, 5 December 2013

Just as we are. [ Acts 16 v31]

I have a dear friend ,who was brought up in Dublin, his family where devoted Roman Catholics, his brother became a priest,and he went to seminary to also become one. Yet all the time he was seeking for an assurance of sins forgiven, to no avail,all the time he was at the seminary ,the trainees never studied the Bible. As he looked at his fellow trainees,he observed that none of them had any assurance of sins forgiven.One of the priests confessed to him,that he hoped that he was dead before Christ  returned,because he was filled with a dread,and wondered where could hide from Him,in other words he had no assurance of his sins being forgiven,and so lived in constant fear of judgement. My friend resigned from the seminary and continued to seek for what he desired with all his heart, an assurance of his sins forgiven. He eventually did find the answer when he simply trusted Jesus ,instead of trusting in the church,the so called sacrament's,Mary, the priesthood, good works. He realised that none of those  things could save him, the fact is ,we are not saved by things,but by a   person called Jesus.As the old  hymn tells us, we must come just as we are, and simply trust Him who alone can save.
A prayer  ...../Dear God we thank You that there is only one Saviour ,Jesus, He paid it all, thank you in His name Amen/

Wednesday, 4 December 2013

Witnessing [Matthew 10 v16]

Sometimes it is hard to know whither to speak out or say nothing,witnessing for Christ is something all Christians should do,,but when to speak that is the question?.There seems to be we all need a degree of boldness,and a great deal of wisdom,as I grow older I am less inclined to speak,and that concerns me at times. My desire is that everyone without exception should know Christ,as I hope it is yours,but how to win them ,how to be a fisher of men,that is the question?That is the question I wrestle with ,I am sure we need to go forward prayerfully,to seek to be usable and effective ,how do we define effectiveness, depending on God?,yes, but we we need to ask God ,if there is anything we are doing that is stopping  Him, using us in an effective manner.The greatest barrier to effectiveness would be wrong practises ,our lives must be free from those things that cause people  not wanting to listen to are attempt,to speak to them about Christ.Jesus said let your light shine that men see our good works.[Matthew 5v16].Our Saviour continually challenged the religious  people,in regards to their hypocrisy,their hardness of heart,we must seek not only talk about Jesus but we must walk the walk. Often it is our walk that can grant us opportunities to  witness about Christ,but remember it is no guarantee that people will respond.The challenge for all us who know Christ, is to be His witness,by our lives and our words,and to leave the results with God.
A   prayer...../Dear God grant that You may use us to some degree to be effective witnesses for Your glory, in Jesus name Amen/

Tuesday, 3 December 2013

Our greatest resource. [ Luke 18v 1-7]

What is our greatest resource?,not our bank account,not our gifts,our greatest resource is prayer,what is Elijah remembered for,? prayer,what is the greatest,blessing that David left us ?prayer,his Psalms are but prayers put to song.What did our Lord do before Calvary?,He prayed,His crucifixion was peppered with prayer.The Devil would cause us to the doubt importance of Prayer,the pressures of life would cause us to have no time for prayer,the disappointments of life can cause us to despair ,and give up praying. There may appear many reasons not to pray,but there are overwhelming reasons to pray, our Saviour ,said that we should always pray[Luke 18v1], and He added , and not loose heart. We are called to perseverance in our Christian life [Ephesians 6 v18],and that includes prayer,indeed if we are going to persevere then we need to pray. In praying we are granted the strength to press on,there may be delays in our requests when we pray, God may not grant us our request when we pray,but there will be answers,needs will be met,doors will open,healing will take place,the enemy of our souls, will flee from us[James 4 v7].The saints prayers are precious to God,in Revelation 5 v8 they are seen as incense, arising to God, David prays,/Let my prayer be set forth before Thee as incense[Psalm 141 v2].You make think your prayers are weak,limited,and ineffective,but in Gods sight they are precious and pleasing,even in their imperfectness.
A  prayer...../Dear God grant us grace to pray in Jesus name Amen/

Monday, 2 December 2013

Prepare to meet Thy God. [ Amos 4 v12]

I have never heard of Black Friday,until yesterday,it originated in the United States in Philadelphia,it was called that because of congestion by traffic and predestines,out shopping the day after Thanksgiving.There are other reasons,but whatever the reason it is spreading all over the world,retailers like Walmarts , use it as special sales day ,where things are reduced greatly in price. This has even reached Belfast my home town,I know this as there was a news item,reporting on the violence by shoppers seeking bargains. I know we all love a bargain ,but as I watched the news item, I felt sad how people appeared to displaying sale rage. Later on I thought,if only those dear people would show the same concern for their souls,if only,but alas most of them ,live for the THINGS OF TIME.In Matthew 11v12,we read,/The Kingdom of heaven suffereth violence, and the violent take it by force./ It is Denney who wrote,that the/ Kingdom of heaven is not for the well meaning,but for the desperate/ I never suffered when I became a Christian, but many do, many in this world,suffer greatly,but inspite of this they are desperate for that which is of more value that a 42inch TV,Christ the pearl of greatest price.
A prayer..../ Dear God have mercy on mankind who so easily are blinded by earths fading glory,grant Lord that there will be turning to the person of Christ, who alone can save and satisfy Amen /

Sunday, 1 December 2013

Dont Give up on people.[ Luke 13 v6ff]

I purchased an orchid about 15th months ago,the people I bought it from instructed me as to its care,it is called cool breeze,and had a lovely bloom on it.They bloom for a long period ,but they also take a long time before they bloom again. For over a year it has had no bloom on it,I had cared for it watering it ,pruning where necessary,and kept looking for a signs of a new bloom. I must confess I felt like throwing it out,because I bought it for its bloom of lovely flowers,not for its big green leaves. I wanted flowers,well the good news is I have noticed two shoots beginning to grow,hopefully I will have my desire ,it flowering.It reminded me of a story  in Luke 13 v 6ff our Saviour told of a man who planted a fig tree,and when he came to gather fruit from that tree,there was none on it.He spoke to the man he had put in charge of this fig tree,saying how for three years ,he had come looking  for fruit,but had found none,and his decision was to cut it down.The man in charge counsels patience,and not to give up on the plant,who knows it may bear fruit.W. Barclay,  mentions 3 things in relation to this story [1] Uselessness invites disaster. [2] Nothing which only takes out can survive. [3]It tells us of the gospel of the second chance.  What I see in this story is very simple,don't give up on people,who knows under God they may change,I will think of that every time I look at my orchid.
A prayer...../ Dear God we thank You that inspite of our stubbornness, You never give up on us,help us to not give up on anyone in Jesus name Amen /