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17:39 And David girded his sword upon his armour, and he assayed to go;
for he had not proved it. And David said unto Saul, I cannot go with
these; for I have not proved them. And David put them off him.
Philistine that David was about to fight was a big boy, probably about 9
feet tall. Nobody from the armies of Israel was willing to take him on
until David the shepherd boy came along. David was not a proven warrior
at this time even though the previous chapter describes him as a
warrior, but He knew and trusted in the Living God and he knew how to
use a sling and a stone.
David said he would fight the Philistine, then Saul, who would not fight
this man himself, seemed to know how David should do it. He armed David
in the way that a man trained in Saul’s army would normally be armed.
Saul’s armor didn’t work for David since he had not trained in it,
but he had trained himself to use a sling and stone.
you ever noticed that if you want to know the will of God in your life,
all you have to do is ask someone else? People often complain that they
don’t know the will of God for their own lives, but they always seem
to know the will of God for everyone else. How do we take advice and yet
avoid falling into the trap of doing that which God has not fitted us to
do? I know it is God’s will that all men should be saved. I know that
those who are saved should be baptized. I know that those who are
baptized should consecrate themselves to the Lord, but exactly how they
should serve the Lord once they have consecrated themselves to Him is
certainly not a decision I can make for them. David’s path to
greatness was criticized by His brothers and was not the path that Saul
understood. However, David had spent his life taking care of sheep and
the Lord used what he had learned in that experience to slay Goliath. It
was not the normal path to becoming a warrior.
God has called us to be a personal worker, we probably shouldn’t try
to be preachers. If God has called us to be shepherds, we probably
shouldn’t try to be evangelists. If we are called to a work that
cannot be done while carrying a normal job, we probably shouldn’t feel
guilty when the Lord uses his people to support our work. They get the
reward for being helpers so that those they support can get the reward
for doing a work that would not otherwise be possible.
Lord often takes people like David and you and me that others do not
think can or should do a particular job and commissions them to do His
work. He has them use means like prayer and faith and the Word of God
that others do not think are sufficient by themselves for this work. And
then He surprises us all by making it work. David won because he used
what God had fitted him to use in a battle that the Lord had called him
to fight, and because he didn’t allow himself to be turned aside by
those who were unwilling to engage the enemy. May we be wise enough to
know our limitations, to have confidence in the Lord whose power is
unlimited, and to use the abilities God has given us to win His battles.
for the week of May 7, 2006
19:26 When Jesus therefore saw his mother, and the disciple standing by,
whom he loved, he saith unto his mother, Woman, behold thy son!
19:27 Then saith he to the disciple, Behold thy mother! And from that
hour that disciple took her unto his own home.
6:2 Honor thy father and mother.
are important in the overall scheme of things. As far as I know, there
have only been two people in the history of this world who did not have
a mother--that was Adam and Eve. The Bible says that we are to honor
them and that means to place a high value on them. All of us who are
reading this can thank the Lord that our mother’s “chose life”
rather than aborting us. One bill board says, “Your mother chose life,
are nurturers while fathers are usually disciplinarians. Now I know that
I am over generalizing. But in most cases, we would have rather had our
mothers correct us when we were children than our fathers. Mothers
usually have the day to day responsibility of raising the family and
then the fathers get to take the credit when it all works out.
can see a mother’s love in Deborah’s song that she sang about Sisera,
the general of the army of Jabin, king of Canaan. After he was
destroyed, she sang in Judges 5:28, “The mother of Sisera looked out
at a window, and cried through the lattice, Why is his chariot so long
in coming? why tarry the wheels of his chariots?“ A child may leave
home but they never leave a mother‘s heart.
mothers show partiality in raising their children. This causes confusion
in the family. This was the case with Rebekah. She loved Jacob more than
Esau. However, that just balanced out the fact that Isaac loved Esau
more than Jacob. Mother’s may not be perfect but most of us are glad
for the mothers who bore us and sacrificed their time and resources to
reversal occurs when parent’s grow old. This is a very difficult time
in the life of a mother and a father. The children become the care
takers and the parents become the dependents. I am sure that I am not
going to take that stage in life graciously. However, since honoring
father and mother involves placing a high value on them, one way we show
that is by taking care of them when they are older.
the Lord was on the cross, He made provision for his own mother so she
would be cared for after He died, and thus fulfilled the law that
required Him to honor His father and mother. We don’t know what had
happened to Joseph at this point, but he doesn’t seem to be in the
picture. While the Lord was providing a sacrifice for the sins of the
whole world, He was also providing a home for His own mother.
Lord wants us to trust Him for time as well as for eternity. How can we
help but love and trust someone who not only dies for us but then
provides for us. Contrary to the teaching of some churches, Mary needed
the Lord to die for her sins just like everyone else. She needed to
trust in Him just like everyone else. But he showed her special
consideration, because she was His mother.
for the week of May 14, 2006
5:6 When Jesus saw him lie, and knew that he had been now a long time in
that case, he saith unto him, Wilt thou be made whole?
it possible to be sick for many years and NOT want to be made whole? I
suppose that if a person wasn’t in pain; if he got used to the
sympathy of others, and if he liked not having to work for a living,
that person might get quite comfortable being infirm.
the Bible, sin is likened unto diseases like leprosy and paralysis. Sin
causes us to be blind, lame and impotent or invalids. Some of us are
like the impotent man of John 5, we have been a long time in that
condition. The Lord can cure us of the disease of sin, and can make us
fit for heaven, but He will not do that unless that is our desire.
I preach the Gospel and people come to me personally for help, I often
ask them three questions: The first is, “Do you need to be saved?”
Some people don’t even know they have been afflicted with the disease
of sin, and they cannot honestly answer in the affirmative. They think
they are better than others. They say that they have tried to do the
best that they can, and that somehow they are pretty good. Because they
don’t see their need to be saved, there is nothing that I can do to
those I am helping say that they need to be saved, then I ask them, “Do
you want to be saved?” Some people simply do not want to be saved.
They may think God is unfair or that He will require them to live the
kind of life that they do not want to live. Obviously, I cannot help
them. When people want to be saved I ask them, “Do you want to be
saved NOW?” I have had people tell me that they want to be saved, but
just not right now. Some want to live without being accountable to God
and then they seem to think that there will be a “convenient season”
(Acts 24:25) when they will get this matter settled. Unfortunately,
Satan makes sure there is never a convenient time to be saved from the
eternal conscious punishment that has been prepared for unbelievers.
if a person can answer all three questions with a resounding “yes”,
I know that I can use the Word of God to bring them to the assurance
that Christ died for their sins. They have said “yes” to the Lord’s
question, “Wilt thou be made whole?” We think people have a hard
time understanding the Gospel and believing in or trusting in the Truth
when, in actuality, most people are arguing with God about their need to
be saved now. Once they agree with God that they need to be saved, once
they decide that they want to be saved and that they want to be saved
now, it is not hard for them to accept the fact that salvation is
obtained by depending on what Christ has done for us and it is not
obtained by depending on what we are doing for Christ. The truth that
“Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners” (1 Timothy 2:15),
is still Truth that is worthy of all acceptation today.
wonder how many of us have actually said “yes” to the question “Wilt
thou be made whole?” For us the question might be phrased, “Would
you like to know for sure that you have been cleansed from your sin and
that you are going to heaven?” I remember when I came to the
conclusion that I needed to be saved, that I wanted to be saved and that
I wanted to be saved now. It wasn’t long before I was able to rest in
the Truth that I didn’t need to wait for God to save me because Christ
had already died to do just that. I rested on that Truth and it still
gives me peace with God today.
for the week of May 21, 2006
their eyes were opened; and Jesus straitly charged them, saying, See
that no man know it.
they, when they were departed, spread abroad his fame in all that
Lord had done a great miracle, He had opened the eyes of two blind men.
He had tested their faith by asking them if they believed He could do
this. They had said, “Yes!” He had said that His miracle would be
according to their confidence in Him; and, since they were healed, they
obviously really did believe He could heal them. After opening their
eyes, He gave them a test that they failed. He asked them not to tell
anyone that they have been healed.
you imagine people not wondering about these two? They were blind, but
now they could see. Wouldn’t it be obvious to those who knew them that
something great had happened? Wouldn’t their friends, relatives, and
acquaintances want to know how they were now able to see? And were they
going to be able to fulfill the Lord’s command, “See that no man
know it?” I don’t think so!
we are saved, we have our spiritual eyes opened to the truth that Christ
Jesus came into the world to save sinners (1 Timothy 1:15). We
understand and trust in the Truth that God demonstrates His love to us
in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us (Romans 5:8). We
find that as sinners we are saved simply by taking God at His Word, by
believing Him without any reservations (Acts 8:37). We too should have a
hard time keeping that to ourselves.
was likely saved in John 3 but He didn’t publicly proclaim His
confidence in the Lord until He helped Joseph of Arimathea bury Him. So
we can be saved and not confess that publicly. But Nicodemus did confess
Him when the time was right and so will we. Romans 10 verse 9 says that
if we confess the Lord Jesus and believe in our hearts that God has
raised Him from the dead, we will be saved. Many think it is the
confession that saves, but it is faith in Christ that saves. Romans 10
verse 11 seems to make it clear that confession is unto the salvation
that faith in Christ has provided. Even if that is not perfectly clear
from these verses, it should be obvious that we cannot confess to that
which we have not believed--to something that we do not have. So
confession does not save, but how can the saved keep from confessing?
personally believe that the Lord was trying to make a point by asking
these two who had been healed to do something He knew that they could
not do. If we are not confessing the Lord, perhaps our spiritual healing
has not brought about any visible change that others wonder about. But
if we are asked about why we are different or happy, it should be very
difficult for us not to give the enthusiastic response that the Lord has
loved us, has died for us, and that through faith in His name we are
saved for time and for eternity.
does not save, but it should be the normal response of those that are
saved. We should find it hard not to tell others of the great work that
Christ has done for us. On this memorial day weekend, the best way for
the Lord to be memorialized is for us to confess Him before men. We can
do that by being baptized if we are truly saved and we can do that by
remembering the Lord when the church gathers together as in 1
Corinthians 11:33-34. But we can also do that by not hiding what the
Lord has done for us when we are asked for a reason of the hope that is
in us (1 Peter 3:15).
for the week of May 28, 2006