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Make Someone truly Happy this Year!
the LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that
every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. And
the LORD was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and He was grieved
in His heart. So the LORD said, “I will destroy man whom I have
created from the face of the earth, both man and beast, creeping thing
and birds of the air, for I am sorry that I have made them.” But Noah
found grace in the eyes of the LORD. This is the genealogy of Noah. Noah
was a just man, perfect in his generations. Noah walked with God.
accidents, war, the Ebola virus, deaths by flu, deaths by cancer, death
by automobile accidents, shootings, demonstrations against police
brutality, divorce, domestic violence, suicide, economic
collapse—these are the headlines that we see on any given day.
And oh yes, since this is January we can expect 20 below zero
weather with wind and snow. The
news is not good. How can
anyone really be happy in this world?
may be bad but they probably aren’t as bad as they were in Noah’s
day. People were living in
many cases to be over 900 years old.
Can you imagine the knowledge that they had stored in that
computer we call a brain? Had
experience been a good teacher for them?
Apparently not because the world had become violent and corrupt.
We manage to make a mess of things in a life span of about 80
years. Can you imagine what a corrupt depraved mind could do in over 900
Godly lineage Must have been Lonely
Genesis 6 we are given a genealogy of the godly line of humanity that
ultimately produced the Lord Jesus.
But even in that genealogy only two people “walked with God.”
One was Enoch who apparently went to heaven without dying and was
spared from coming judgment just as the church will be in our day.
Then there was Noah who pictures the believing remnant of the
nation of Israel who will be truly saved and preserved during the
judgments of the tribulation period.
By the time the flood came, there were only eight righteous
people on an earth that had to be heavily populated since lifespans were
so long and families were so large.
Some translations would give us the impression that only Noah was
righteous and that his children came along because of his authority over
them. Even so, only eight
were saved. All the others
in that royal lineage had died or had been raptured by the time the
flood came. Even Methuselah,
the longest living person recorded in the genealogy, had apparently died
before the flood came even though he died in the year of the flood.
If he had died in the flood that would seem to indicate that he
was judged along with the unbelieving world and that he wasn’t a true
worshipper of the LORD. I
don’t believe that to be true.
must have had a lonely existence while building that ark.
He and probably his family were the only ones who really believed
God. But he remained
faithful. He didn’t see
many saved but he did see his family saved.
Noah and his family were righteous in his day, in our day, there is none
righteous (Romans 3:10). No
one seeks after God even though He seeks after us.
But there is one man who pleased the Lord.
His name is Jesus and we who are saved call Him Lord.
Only faith in Him can make us truly happy. My hope and goal is
that this year I can smile more, help others more, and be a better
person than I was last year. I
want to quit the grumbling and complaining and I want to make “Just
one someone happy!” I
think that is the title of a Jimmy Durante song.
The only way to really make this world a better place and to
smile more and to help solve the sin and crime problem is to introduce
people to the Lord Jesus who really cares about them and who really
We Really love Our Neighbors, Let’s Make a Difference!
of you may want to become experts on theology this year, some of you may
have grandiose plans about bringing about world peace. Others
may want to lead or start a large church.
Me, I just want to make a difference in someone’s life,
and if the Lord allows me to make a difference in a bunch of people’s
lives that will be great. We
can’t reach everyone with the good news but we can all reach someone.
It would be great if we who are really saved, we who are true
believers, could truly love those we know are not saved.
We need to love them enough to be burdened about their eternal
destiny and to pray that the Lord will help us be used in making them
for the week of January 4, 2015
Timothy 1:12 For this reason
I also suffer these things; nevertheless I am not ashamed, for I know
whom I have believed and am persuaded that He is able to keep what I
have committed to Him until that Day.
Making of Many Books is only Wearisome
the preacher, admonished his son many years ago that of making many
books there is no end and that much study is wearisome to the flesh
(Ecclesiastes 12:12). If
that was true then, think of how the making of books has increased in
our day. Then add to that
all the material available on the internet and it is a wonder that
anyone can keep up with the new ideas and translations and philosophies
and “discoveries” that affect our relationship with God.
Today, people don’t ask me whether I have read a particular
passage in the Bible, they ask me if I have read a current book.
And if I haven’t, and normally I haven’t, I am made to feel
that I am just not spending time “keeping up.”
the Author is more important than Having Knowledge about the Author
knowledge about the Bible and gaining understanding about the major
themes and doctrines of the Bible is important, but knowing the author
of the Bible is far better. Many
people know about Him, and many people know what He teaches; but many
people have never walked with Him like Enoch and Noah did.
Many people have never known the Lord in the same way that they
know friends on this earth. Many
would say that is impossible to know the Lord intimately because the
Lord is not physically here. While
that is true, we who are saved are told that we are the temple of God.
1 Corinthians 3:16 says, “Do you not know that you are the
temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?”
We know God in the person of the Lord Jesus and the Holy Spirit
teaches us the things concerning Him, so we really should know the Lord
in a practical and intimate way. We
should be able to say like Paul, “I know whom I have believed (or
am reminded of the following story, a story I cannot prove it to be true
even though I have heard variations of this story for many years.
You can read the story here:
was once a Shakespearean actor who would read Psalm 23 at the end of his
performance. He was known everywhere for his one-man shows of readings
and recitations from the classics.
night, without exception, as the actor began his recitation --"The
Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want"…
crowd would listen attentively. And then, at the conclusion of the
Psalm, they would rise in thunderous applause in appreciation of the
actor's incredible ability to bring the verse to life.
one night, just before the actor was to offer his customary recital of
the Psalm, a young man from the audience spoke up. "Sir, do you
mind if tonight I recite Psalm 23?" The actor was quite taken back
by this unusual request, but he allowed the young man to come forward
and stand front and center on the stage to recite the Psalm 23. He knew
that the ability of this unskilled youth would be no match for his own
a soft voice, the young man began to recite the words of the Psalm. When
he was finished, there was no applause. There was no standing ovation as
on other nights. All that could be heard was the sound of weeping. The
audience had been so moved by the young man's recitation that every eye
was full of tears. Amazed by what he had heard, the actor said to the
youth, "I don't understand. I have been performing Psalm 23 for
years. I have a lifetime of experience and training - but I have never
been able to move an audience as you have tonight. Tell me, what is your
young man quietly replied, "Well sir, you know the Psalm...I
know…the Shepherd." Unknown
had found his savior to be trustworthy and he had confidence that as he
faced the executioner on THAT DAY, the Lord would never forsake him.
He would keep the promises that He had made to Paul.
Paul had committed His soul to the One he knew to be faithful.
He knew that by experience and not just because he had great
knowledge and great revelations.
He knew the author of His salvation.
He knew the Savior that he had met on the Damascus Road.
He knew the Lord Jesus. Do
we really know Him?
is so much better to know the WHO than the WHAT!
for the week of January 11, 2015
or Tares? False or Genuine?
13:24-25 Another parable He
put forth to them, saying: “The kingdom of heaven is like a man who
sowed good seed in his field; “but while men slept, his enemy came and
sowed tares among the wheat and went his way.
Enemy is at Work
Bible addresses the truth. One
of the important truths of Scripture is that the Lord has an enemy
called by various names. He
is the Devil, the Serpent, and the Destroyer.
He is the adversary or Satan.
But most of all He is the Liar and a Deceiver.
As a result of His enmity and hatred for anything that is right
and good and that glorifies the Lord Jesus, there is a real attack
against the church, the body of Christ.
The church is one aspect of the Kingdom of Heaven; and Satan, the
enemy, has made sure that there are tares among the wheat.
Tares apparently look like wheat but are a noxious weed that
takes up space and nutrients needed by the wheat.
They hinder the growth of the wheat which represents those who
are the real servants and worshippers of the Lord in the Kingdom.
Bible warns us about false prophets, false teachers, false brethren,
false witnesses, false christs, and false apostles.
Something that is false is not genuine, it is counterfeit.
It may look like the real thing but there are “giveaways”,
that should alert a believer to that which is false.
am told that in order to find counterfeit money, you have to study the
real thing. You don’t
spend time looking at all the counterfeits.
If a person knows the real thing, when the counterfeit comes
along, the trained eye will detect it.
It is the same with that which is false in the kingdom.
When we study that which is real, we find ourselves discerning
that which is false. That is
why in 3rd John v 11, Gaius is told to imitate that which is
good. There were three men
involved in this letter. Gaius
who needed discernment. Diotrephes
who had his own agenda and wasn’t even a believer.
Then there is Demetrius who has a good report of all men.
Gaius is encouraged to imitate Demetrius.
false is not always detected because a Christian is supposed to
“believe all things (1 Corinthians 13:7).”
That probably means he is not to be suspicious of everyone’s
motives. But sometimes the
motives are clear. Paul
dealt with Jews who called themselves Christians but who wanted the
Christians to live like Jews. Paul
called these people false brethren.
But in the upper room when the Lord said that one of the apostles
would betray Him, they all began to question themselves since we who are
true disciples all know that we have weaknesses.
A false believer (or in Judas’ case, a false apostle),
knows he is false. In
Matthew 26:25 Judas also said, “Is it I?”
However, while the others wondered if they could possibly betray
the Lord, Judas asked the question to see if the Lord knew that he was a
betrayer. And the Lord did
What do We Do?
of all we need to make sure that we are true and not false.
It is one thing to say we are believers and it is another thing
to be convinced by the Holy Spirit of the Truth of Scripture.
We need to be sure that we really believe that Christ is Who He
claimed to be and that He is the sacrifice for our sins.
we need to pray for discernment that we might be “wise as serpents but
harmless as doves” (Matthew 10:16).
A false prophet, a false believer, a false teacher will
demonstrate pride (he will want the preeminent place), and he will have
his own agenda. A
Christian is no match for them. Only the Lord can really protect the
believer from the deceitfulness of our cunning enemy.
However, the more we study the truth, the more likely it is that
we will discern the false. Then the Lord will be able to use us to tell
a Gaius to imitate a Demetrius and not a Diotrephes.
we need to believe the Lord when He says to Peter in Matthew 16:18,
“And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will
build My church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it.”
The Lord is building His church on the Truth that Peter
confessed. That truth is
that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the Living God.
We can rejoice in the fact that no matter how weak we are and no
matter how cunning and strong the enemy is, the gates of Hell will not
prevail against the church.
am convinced that we are either doing the Lord’s will and work or we
are doing Satan’s will and work. While
believers may not be able to discern the motives of others, we certainly
know our own motives. If
anyone is doing Satan’s work as a false believer, their end is to be
destroyed. The Lord always
wins in the end.
for the week of January 18, 2015
Two Cents Worth!
2:11-12 For there is no partiality with God. For as many as have sinned
without law will also perish without law, and as many as have sinned in
the law will be judged by the law.
the Patriots played the Colts for a chance to go to the 2015 Superbowl,
the game of all games. The
final outcome was lopsided with the Patriots winning by a landslide.
However, it has been established that of the 24 balls used in the
game, eleven were underinflated by two pounds and those were the balls
used by the Patriots to win the game in wet rainy weather.
Now the question is, “Did the Patriots, cheat?”
The answer seems to be quite clearly, “Yes.”
eleven balls used by the Patriots were underinflated is not being
questioned. That all the
balls used by the Colts were properly inflated is not being questioned.
Other quarter backs have stated that underinflated balls are
easier to control in bad weather. If
weather alone caused this problem it would seem that all the balls would
have been affected. A player
from the losing team made an interception and recognized that the ball
was soft. It is fairly
obvious that someone cheated.
people are dealing with this issue in the following ways: 1.
Nothing really happened or the referees would have picked up on
it. 2. Nothing happened that
makes any difference. 3.
These kind of things happen all the time.
It is called “competitive edge.”
4. If something did happen, why should one man’s “sin”
affect the whole team? 4.
Why investigate the whole thing since the Patriots would have won
observation is that since the twelve balls used by the Colts were ok,
something happened to the evenly underinflated balls.
I haven’t got
a good answer for
the fact that one ball was “legal.”
Since the referees should have noticed the soft balls,
they must have
been a part of whatever happened. Now
many of you are going to say that I haven’t a clue and that is all
right because really I don’t. I
am just observing and noticing that people are handling this sin (and to
me it is obvious that there was intentional sin here), the same way they
handle sin that offends God.
deny it or they deny its importance in the following ways.
Some will say that society has changed so God’s
changed. Others say, "lt
matter because everyone does it.” Others
will say that the rule that they have broken makes no sense.
me this last week has been a lesson in dealing with “sin”.
Big money is involved so everybody wants to look the other
direction. We know right now
that the Patriots should be asked to forfeit the game BECAUSE THE TEAM
DIDN’T FOLLOW THE RULES. However,
likely to suggest
that because of all the money that is involved, including the money
being bet on the game. So we
are being taught an important lesson:
if you are going to cheat, make sure that you are rich and good
God does not think like man thinks.
He holds us accountable for big sins and small sins.
He holds us accountable for sins of commission and sins of
omission. He holds us
accountable for intentional and unintentional sins.
THERE IS NO PARTIALITY WITH GOD.
while God does not let anyone off the hook, the good news is that if we
confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to
cleanse us from all unrighteousness (1 John 1:9).
We are so unlike God that if the Patriots and those involved in
Deflategate actually confessed that they had sinned, I am sure that
those who would lose money because of it would never forgive them.
In addition, no one that I know of is willing to step forward and
say that they are willing to pay any and all penalties if the
transgressors will just fess up. But
that is what Christ has done for us.
is just too much at Stake for a True Confession
has no real solution for sin. God
does. Wouldn’t it be nice
if the Patriots would just step forward and say, “We cheated, we are
going to forfeit the game since we didn’t win fair and square.”
I am not a prophet nor the son of a prophet, but I am sure that
is not going to happen.
for the week of January 25, 2015