Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Do you know love?




God gives us the answer to the question here:



1 John 3:16



16 By this we know love, that he laid down his life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for the brothers.



Jesus showed us the ultimate price for love, when He died for us and our sins. I also think of our brave men and women who have given their lives for the love of their country.



I also want us to realize that laying down our lives is not always physical death. It is taking time for others. Time is valuable and tho take it and serve someone else shows love. Laying down our lives in service to others shows we care. As we have said many times before, actions speak louder than words.



So are you all about self which shows no love, or are you all about others which shows great love?



Short and simple today but much to think about! Do you know love?



Tom

Monday, October 20, 2014

Are you a citizen of heaven?




First a little US citizen quiz. Do you know the 4 ways to become a US citizen?



1. Citizenship through parents



2. Marry a US citizen



3. Green Card Naturalization



4. Join the military



Interesting huh? You can look up the details if you need to especially the last one which takes a little explaining.



Read these verses and then I have another question for you:



Philippians 3:17-4:1

17 Brothers, join in imitating me, and keep your eyes on those who walk according to the example you have in us. 18 For many, of whom I have often told you and now tell you even with tears, walk as enemies of the cross of Christ. 19 Their end is destruction, their god is their belly, and they glory in their shame, with minds set on earthly things. 20 But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, 21 who will transform our lowly body to be like his glorious body, by the power that enables him even to subject all things to himself.

4 Therefore, my brothers, whom I love and long for, my joy and crown, stand firm thus in the Lord, my beloved.



Are you a citizen of heaven? I hope and pray you are. How do you become a citizen of heaven? There is only one way!



John 14:6

6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.



Jesus Christ is the only way to citizenship with the Father in heaven. You must have a personal relationship with Jesus!



Here is the next question:



Can a US citizenship be revoked?



The answer is yes but it is rarely done. Here are the 4 reasons US citizenship can be revoked:



1. Lying on paperwork for US citizenship



2. Refusal to testify before Congress



3. Membership in Subversive group (terrorist group)



4. Dishonorable discharge from military if citizenship was gained through military.



So here is my next question, what can revoke your citizenship in heaven?



Here is the answer: nothing!



John 10:28-29

28 I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand. 29 My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all, and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father's hand.



When you have given you life to Jesus and follow Him nothing can take your citizenship in heaven away as God has said no one is able to snatch them out of His hand! Now here is where the problem lies. Many claim to believe in Jesus which they may but so does Satin and the demons, the key is they have not surrendered their lives to Him and follow Him. It takes more that a simple belief, it takes total surrender.



Here are the words of Jesus:



Matthew 16:24

Then Jesus told his disciples, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.



I hope you can see here it is more that a simple belief, it is a surrendering of your life to Jesus!



So are you a citizen of heaven? If you are awesome! If not what is stopping you? I would be glad to talk to you about it, just ask!



Tom

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Thursday, October 16, 2014

What you do reveals what you believe!




In his book, Experiencing God, Henry Blackaby says "What you do reveals what you believe about God, regardless of what you say". That is a fact! Remember those famous words you have heard before...your actions speak louder than words? There are tons of examples in the bible that confirm the statement by Blackaby. Let's look at one:



1 Samuel 17



Now the Philistines gathered their armies for battle. And they were gathered at Socoh, which belongs to Judah, and encamped between Socoh and Azekah, in Ephes-dammim. 2 And Saul and the men of Israel were gathered, and encamped in the Valley of Elah, and drew up in line of battle against the Philistines. 3 And the Philistines stood on the mountain on the one side, and Israel stood on the mountain on the other side, with a valley between them. 4 And there came out from the camp of the Philistines a champion named Goliath of Gath, whose height was six cubits and a span. 5 He had a helmet of bronze on his head, and he was armed with a coat of mail, and the weight of the coat was five thousand shekels of bronze. 6 And he had bronze armor on his legs, and a javelin of bronze slung between his shoulders. 7 The shaft of his spear was like a weaver's beam, and his spear's head weighed six hundred shekels of iron. And his shield-bearer went before him. 8 He stood and shouted to the ranks of Israel, “Why have you come out to draw up for battle? Am I not a Philistine, and are you not servants of Saul? Choose a man for yourselves, and let him come down to me. 9 If he is able to fight with me and kill me, then we will be your servants. But if I prevail against him and kill him, then you shall be our servants and serve us.” 10 And the Philistine said, “I defy the ranks of Israel this day. Give me a man, that we may fight together.” 11 When Saul and all Israel heard these words of the Philistine, they were dismayed and greatly afraid.

12 Now David was the son of an Ephrathite of Bethlehem in Judah, named Jesse, who had eight sons. In the days of Saul the man was already old and advanced in years. 13 The three oldest sons of Jesse had followed Saul to the battle. And the names of his three sons who went to the battle were Eliab the firstborn, and next to him Abinadab, and the third Shammah. 14 David was the youngest. The three eldest followed Saul, 15 but David went back and forth from Saul to feed his father's sheep at Bethlehem. 16 For forty days the Philistine came forward and took his stand, morning and evening.

17 And Jesse said to David his son, “Take for your brothers an ephah of this parched grain, and these ten loaves, and carry them quickly to the camp to your brothers. 18 Also take these ten cheeses to the commander of their thousand. See if your brothers are well, and bring some token from them.”

19 Now Saul and they and all the men of Israel were in the Valley of Elah, fighting with the Philistines. 20 And David rose early in the morning and left the sheep with a keeper and took the provisions and went, as Jesse had commanded him. And he came to the encampment as the host was going out to the battle line, shouting the war cry. 21 And Israel and the Philistines drew up for battle, army against army. 22 And David left the things in charge of the keeper of the baggage and ran to the ranks and went and greeted his brothers. 23 As he talked with them, behold, the champion, the Philistine of Gath, Goliath by name, came up out of the ranks of the Philistines and spoke the same words as before. And David heard him.

24 All the men of Israel, when they saw the man, fled from him and were much afraid. 25 And the men of Israel said, “Have you seen this man who has come up? Surely he has come up to defy Israel. And the king will enrich the man who kills him with great riches and will give him his daughter and make his father's house free in Israel.” 26 And David said to the men who stood by him, “What shall be done for the man who kills this Philistine and takes away the reproach from Israel? For who is this uncircumcised Philistine, that he should defy the armies of the living God?” 27 And the people answered him in the same way, “So shall it be done to the man who kills him.”

28 Now Eliab his eldest brother heard when he spoke to the men. And Eliab's anger was kindled against David, and he said, “Why have you come down? And with whom have you left those few sheep in the wilderness? I know your presumption and the evil of your heart, for you have come down to see the battle.” 29 And David said, “What have I done now? Was it not but a word?” 30 And he turned away from him toward another, and spoke in the same way, and the people answered him again as before.

31 When the words that David spoke were heard, they repeated them before Saul, and he sent for him. 32 And David said to Saul, “Let no man's heart fail because of him. Your servant will go and fight with this Philistine.” 33 And Saul said to David, “You are not able to go against this Philistine to fight with him, for you are but a youth, and he has been a man of war from his youth.” 34 But David said to Saul, “Your servant used to keep sheep for his father. And when there came a lion, or a bear, and took a lamb from the flock, 35 I went after him and struck him and delivered it out of his mouth. And if he arose against me, I caught him by his beard and struck him and killed him. 36 Your servant has struck down both lions and bears, and this uncircumcised Philistine shall be like one of them, for he has defied the armies of the living God.” 37 And David said, “The Lord who delivered me from the paw of the lion and from the paw of the bear will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine.” And Saul said to David, “Go, and the Lord be with you!”

38 Then Saul clothed David with his armor. He put a helmet of bronze on his head and clothed him with a coat of mail, 39 and David strapped his sword over his armor. And he tried in vain to go, for he had not tested them. Then David said to Saul, “I cannot go with these, for I have not tested them.” So David put them off. 40 Then he took his staff in his hand and chose five smooth stones from the brook and put them in his shepherd's pouch. His sling was in his hand, and he approached the Philistine.

41 And the Philistine moved forward and came near to David, with his shield-bearer in front of him. 42 And when the Philistine looked and saw David, he disdained him, for he was but a youth, ruddy and handsome in appearance. 43 And the Philistine said to David, “Am I a dog, that you come to me with sticks?” And the Philistine cursed David by his gods. 44 The Philistine said to David, “Come to me, and I will give your flesh to the birds of the air and to the beasts of the field.” 45 Then David said to the Philistine, “You come to me with a sword and with a spear and with a javelin, but I come to you in the name of the Lord of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. 46 This day the Lord will deliver you into my hand, and I will strike you down and cut off your head. And I will give the dead bodies of the host of the Philistines this day to the birds of the air and to the wild beasts of the earth, that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel, 47 and that all this assembly may know that the Lord saves not with sword and spear. For the battle is the Lord's, and he will give you into our hand.”

48 When the Philistine arose and came and drew near to meet David, David ran quickly toward the battle line to meet the Philistine. 49 And David put his hand in his bag and took out a stone and slung it and struck the Philistine on his forehead. The stone sank into his forehead, and he fell on his face to the ground.

50 So David prevailed over the Philistine with a sling and with a stone, and struck the Philistine and killed him. There was no sword in the hand of David. 51 Then David ran and stood over the Philistine and took his sword and drew it out of its sheath and killed him and cut off his head with it. When the Philistines saw that their champion was dead, they fled. 52 And the men of Israel and Judah rose with a shout and pursued the Philistines as far as Gath and the gates of Ekron, so that the wounded Philistines fell on the way from Shaaraim as far as Gath and Ekron. 53 And the people of Israel came back from chasing the Philistines, and they plundered their camp. 54 And David took the head of the Philistine and brought it to Jerusalem, but he put his armor in his tent.

55 As soon as Saul saw David go out against the Philistine, he said to Abner, the commander of the army, “Abner, whose son is this youth?” And Abner said, “As your soul lives, O king, I do not know.” 56 And the king said, “Inquire whose son the boy is.” 57 And as soon as David returned from the striking down of the Philistine, Abner took him, and brought him before Saul with the head of the Philistine in his hand. 58 And Saul said to him, “Whose son are you, young man?” And David answered, “I am the son of your servant Jesse the Bethlehemite.”



David believed in his God, the Lord Almighty, and acted on behalf of God. His actions showed what He believed and proved his faith. Now look back and look at King Saul and the rest of the army. Their faith rest in themselves and thus they were scared and took no action. This showed a lack of faith. David experienced God and doing so made his faith become even stronger.



Let us know ask ourselves this question, what do my actions say about my faith in God? Think long and hard about it and spend some time in prayer with God asking for guidance in your walk with Him!



Tom

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

You are a door!




Listen to awesome song:



Jason Gray-With every act of love






James 2:8

If you really fulfill the royal law according to the Scripture, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself,” you are doing well.



We all have heard it said many times, actions speak louder than words. We can say we love others but until we see proof, we tend not to believe it. Do we love our neighbors (others)? Is there any proof in our lives that we do?



As followers of Jesus, we are to love others as He loves us. A deep compassionate love willing to sacrifice what ever we have to to help them in their need but ultimately to point them to the love of Jesus. Are we doing that on a regular basis?



This part of the song really jumps out to me:



God put a million, million doors in the world

For his love to walk through

One of those doors is you

I said, God put a million, million doors in the world

For his love to walk through

One of those doors is you



Is your door open or shut? Look what Jesus said about how others are to know we are His:



John 13:35

By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”



So what about it this morning, are you showing the world Jesus by your acts of love?



Tom

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Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Apple of your eye?




When you read that heading what do you think of? I think of that someone special in your life. When God says it what is He referring to? Let's find out:



Proverbs 7:1-3



7 My son, keep my words

and treasure up my commandments with you;

2 keep my commandments and live;

keep my teaching as the apple of your eye;

3 bind them on your fingers;

write them on the tablet of your heart.



God's Word and His teachings are to be the apple of our eyes! Is God's Word that special or important to you? It is fairly easy to tell, how much time do you spend in the Word. Do you obey His Word? God's Word is the guide for our lives, why oh why do we question His Word and pick and chose what we want to obey. God is clear here, His Word is to have top priority in our life!



So here is our question for today....is God's Word the apple of your eye?



Tom

Monday, October 13, 2014

Names and descriptions of God #13




Sorry guys and gals, I was out of town last week and was not able to get devotions out. Today let's finish up the names and descriptions of God. I hope you have enjoyed these as much as me.



My Salvation-Exodus 15:2





2 The Lord is my strength and my song,

and he has become my salvation;

this is my God, and I will praise him,

my father's God, and I will exalt him.



Thank God for our salvation, for it is found in no other! Here is the definition of Salvation: the act of saving or protecting from harm, risk, loss, destruction, etc. Because we a re sinners, Jesus saved us from hell if we put our faith in Him and follow Him the rest of our days. Thank Jesus today for being your salvation!



The Good Shepherd-John 10:11

11 I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.



We are the sheep that have gone astray but we have a loving Shepherd that comes after us to rescue us! Even to die for us...wow! Sheep are considered dumb animals...we are the sheep! Thank God we have the Good Shepherd to lead and protect us! Amen?



My Stronghold-Psalm 18:2





2 The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer,

my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge,

my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.



I like to think of my Stronghold as my Anchor. Once God digs in nothing can move Him. I am so blessed to have God as my stronghold. One who never changes and loves me like no other! Oh what a stronghold we have in Jesus!



The Good Teacher-Mark 10:17

17 And as he was setting out on his journey, a man ran up and knelt before him and asked him, “Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?”



I am so grateful of the fact I have the One with all the answers to life to follow-Jesus! He always wants whats best for us and has given us everything we need to know in the bible. All the answers to life are given to us by the Good Teacher! Thank you Jesus!



So we wrap up the last day of looking at the names and descriptions of God by learning God is Our Salvation, The Good Shepherd, Our Stronghold, and the Good Teacher.



God is our everything! There are many more names and descriptions of God I did not mention. I challenge you to find them! It will deepen your walk with Him as you learn more and more about Him!



Tom

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Monday, October 6, 2014

Names and descriptions of God #12




Good Monday morning! Great day to look at some more of the names and descriptions of God! So let's get at it.



Mediator-1 Timothy 2:5

5 For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus,



Oh this a great one we all need to know. What is a mediator? It is a person who helps find resolution to a problem. So guess who has the problem in our situation? Us...we have a sin problem. Guess who has the resolution to that problem....Jesus. He shed His Own blood to take care of our problem. Now that is a Mediator I can count on! What a friend we have in Jesus!



Our Peace-Ephesians 2:14

14 For he himself is our peace, who has made us both one and has broken down in his flesh the dividing wall of hostility



I sure have found this one to be true in my life. In a world where it seems all there is around us is hostility, violence, disagreements, and hatred, we have A Savior who provides peace for the soul. How many times have we had to find our peace in Him? Too many to count for me. The peace He brings is many time beyond understanding in hard situations, I am so thankful for my Peace found in Christ Jesus.



For this next one let me define for you what a redeem is: to buy or pay off; clear by payment:



My Redeemer-Job 19:25

For I know that my Redeemer lives, and at the last he will stand upon the earth.



Psalm 19:14



14 Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart

be acceptable in your sight,

O Lord, my rock and my redeemer.



This is a great picture for us to paint of our Redeemer Jesus, He is the One who bought us with a price, that price was His shed blood and death upon that cross for our sins. He cleared our debt of sin...wow just think of that. We deserve hell, but He gives us heaven if we will just give our hearts to Him and follow Him the rest of our days.



My Redeemer lives! One day soon He is coming back to get His own, are you ready? I sure am!



So today we see our God is Our Mediator, Our Peace, and Our Redeemer. Thinking about these should get you through a Monday!



Tom