Tag: God’s word

Don’t listen to scoffers!

Scripture reading for October 21st: 2nd Peter 3

Key Scriptures: 2nd Peter 3:1-4 “This is now the second letter that I am writing to you, beloved. In both of them I am stirring up your sincere mind by way of reminder, that you should remember the predictions of the holy prophets and the commandment of the Lord and Savior through your apostles, knowing this first of all, that scoffers will come in the last days with scoffing, following their own sinful desires. They will say, “Where is the promise of His coming? For ever since the fathers fell asleep, all things are continuing as they were from the beginning of creation.”

Peter’s final warning in this second letter and last chapter was an appeal to remember the prophetic predictions of God’s holy prophets and His apostles. If we don’t stay focused on God’s Word and the truth He revealed in Jesus Christ, it will be easy to be led astray. Unbelief will be encouraged by the scoffers in the church of the end times. They will ask mockingly about Christ’s promised return and then point to all those men and women who have died already in faith. To their natural mind, it looks like nothing has changed–or will change! They neglect the warning of the whole counsel of God. The flood of Noah’s day stands as a clear warning that God’s Word is true and things can change in a single day! God’s promised final judgment of the earth and the wicked will be by fire. Don’t scoff!

2nd Peter 3:5-7 “For they deliberately overlook this fact, that the heavens existed long ago, and the earth was formed out of water and through water by the Word of God, and by means of these the world that then existed was deluged with water and perished. But by the same Word the heavens and earth that now exist are stored up for fire, being kept until the day of judgment and destruction of the ungodly.”

Faith confession and prayer: Father God, give me discernment for the voices that are speaking today, even in the church. Lead me in truth daily by Your Word and the Holy Spirit, recognizing the late hour we are living in and Your sure promises to judge the wicked and the earth by fire. Deliver me from the scoffer and the false prophets!

2nd Peter 3:11-12 “Since all these things are thus to be dissolved, what sort of people ought you to be in lives of holiness and godliness, waiting for and hastening the coming of the Day of God, because of which the heavens will be set on fire and dissolved, and the heavenly bodies will melt as they burn!”

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Hearing and doing God’s Word

Scripture reading for March 20th:  Deuteronomy 10-14, Psalm 5, Luke 8

Key Scriptures:  Luke 8:19-21 “Then His mother and His brothers came to Him, but they could not reach Him because of the crowd.  And He was told, “Your mother and brothers are standing outside, desiring to see You.”  But He answered them, “My mother and My brothers are those who hear the Word of God and do it.””

God’s Word is to be listened to, heard, and obeyed.  Jesus was teaching the people that if they wanted to be closely related to Him and God the Father, they must hear and obey God’s Word.  He was not disrespecting His mother and brothers, but using their relationship to Him to call others closer.

Deuteronomy 10:12-13 “And now, Israel, what does the Lord require of you, but to fear the Lord your God, to walk in all His ways, to love Him, to serve the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul, and to keep His commandments and statutes, . .”

Faith confession and prayer:  Lord, I love Your Word and seek to hear and obey.  I am thankful that Jesus Christ perfectly heard and obeyed and now has sent the Holy Spirit to empower me.  I long to see the Father’s face.  Spread Your protection over me and give me favor!

Psalm 5:11-12 “Let all who take refuge in You rejoice; let them ever sing for joy, and spread Your protection over them, that those who love Your Name may exult in You.  for You bless the righteous, O Lord; You cover him with favor as with a shield.”  


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The God of Endurance and Encouragement!

Scripture reading for July 3rd:  Romans 15, Psalm 132, Proverbs 8

Key Scriptures: Romans 15:4-6  “For whatever was written in former days was written for our instruction, that through endurance and through the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope.  May the God of endurance and encouragement grant you to live in such harmony with one another, in accord with Christ Jesus, that together you may with one voice glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.”  

Paul knew that the Roman believers needed endurance and encouragement to live by faith in the grace of Jesus Christ.  The God of endurance and encouragement is Jesus Christ!  This amazing Savior gives us the encouragement and endurance we need through His unchanging and true Word, also a source of fulfillment for our deepest need.

Faith Confession:  I believe that Jesus Christ is the God of endurance and encouragement and that His Word gives me hope as well.  I shout for joy at the gifts of hope, endurance and encouragement!

Psalm 132:8-9  “Arise, O Lord, and go to Your resting place, Your and the ark of Your might.  Let Your priests be clothed with righteousness and let Your saints shout for joy.”

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Resisting temptation by God’s Word

Scripture reading for January 4th: Matthew 4, Psalm 4, Prov. 4 (Reading through the New Testament,  Psalms, and Proverbs one chapter a day, five days each week in 2019–please join me in the trek!)

Key Scriptures:  Matthew 4:1-4 “Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil.  And after fasting forty days and forty nights, He was hungry.  And the tempter came and said to Him, “If You are the Son of God, command these stones to become loaves of bread.”  But He answered, “It is written, “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.””  

Immediately following Jesus’ baptism, the Spirit lead Him to the wilderness where He fasted for forty days and nights.  The devil came to Him at the height of His hunger and suggested He prove His divinity by turning stones into bread.  Jesus responded with God’s Word:  “It is written, “‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word from the mouth of God.”  Jesus made a faith confession to defeat the devil’s temptation and the desire of His own flesh for food.  We can do the same!

Faith’s confession: I believe that my life is not sustained by bread alone, but I live by every word God has spoken and rest in His grace.  I am God’s child!  (Action:  Break any addiction today by standing on God’s Word and resisting the devil’s temptation.)

Psalm 4:8 “In peace I will both lie down and sleep; for You alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety.”

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Jesus brings spiritual conflict!

Scripture reading for January 12th:  Genesis 32-35, Matthew 10

Key Scriptures:  Matthew 10:34-38  “”Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth.  I have not come to bring peace, but a sword.  For I have come to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law.  And a person’s enemies will be those of his own household.  Whoever loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me, and whoever loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me.  And whoever does not take his cross and follow Me is not worthy of Me.”” 

Jesus was talking to His disciples after He had sent them out two by two to the land of Israel.  He warned them of the spiritual conflict they and future generations of believers would face.  Our love for Jesus must surpass all other relationships!  Conflict is inevitable!  God will protect and bless His own!

Genesis 32:9-11 “And Jacob said, “O God of my father Abraham and God of my father Isaac, O Lord who said to me, ‘Return to your country and to your kindred, that I may do you good,’ I am not worthy of the least of all the deeds of steadfast love and all the faithfulness that You have shown to Your servant. . . . .Please deliver me from the hand of my brother, from the hand of Esau, for I fear him, that he may come and attack me, the mothers with the children.  But You said, ‘I will surely do you good . . .'”

Prayer:  Lord, we are weak when it comes to facing opposition, especially from our own family.  May we be encouraged and made bold through Your Word and example.  Protect our family by Your blood.  Amen

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Thankful for the Bread of Life!

Scripture reading for October 26th:  Luke 1-4

Key Scriptures:  Luke 4:1-4  “Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit in the desert, where for forty days He was tempted by the devil.  He ate nothing during those days, and at the end of them He was hungry.  The devil said to Him, “If you are the Son of God, tell this stone to become bread.”  Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man does not live on bread alone.'”  

Jesus had been baptized by John and the Holy Spirit filled Him and led Him into the desert for forty days of testing.  Jesus fasted during this time and at its end, became hungry.  The devil came to Him suggesting that He could turn stones into bread.  Jesus, filled with the Spirit, reminded the devil that obedience to God’s Word was more important to life than food!  God’s Word was Spirit and life eternal!

Thankful for living bread:  “Remember how the Lord your God led you all the way in the desert these forty years, to humble you and to test you in order to know what was in your heart, whether or not you would keep His commands.  He humbled you, causing you to hunger and then feeding you with manna, which neither you nor your fathers had known, to teach you that man does not live on bread alone but on every word that comes from the mouth of the Lord.”  (Deuteronomy 8:2-4)

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Questions for God!

Scripture reading for September 24th: Habakkuk 1-3

“How long, O Lord, must I call for help, but you do not listen?  Or cry out to you, “Violence!” but you do not save?  Why do you make me look at injustice?  Why do you tolerate wrong?  Destruction and violence are before me; there is strife, and conflict abounds.” Habakkuk 1:2-3

Habakkuk was called to speak to God’s people on behalf of God but his words went unheeded by the people.  He began to question God and He was silent.  God always hears His people but sometimes is slower to respond than we would like.  Sometimes, His response brings more questions!

God had told Habakkuk how He was going to raise up the Babylonians and use them to sweep over the land and destroy it.  (Habakkuk 1:6-11)  The Babylonians were a law unto themselves and bent on violence.  They were ruthless and impetuous and cruel.  Habakkuk was perplexed that a God who was holy could use something as vile and lawless as the Babylonians.  Why would God even think of such a thing?

God answered Habakkuk’s complaint and told him to write it down.  His answer spoke of the time of the end and would prove true.  (Habakkuk 2:2-3)  Babylon was full of pride and evil desires, but God would use them to chastise His people for a season.  In the end, Babylon would be punished.

God’s people were to deal with these revelations by a simple truth:  “the righteous will live by his faith.” Habakkuk 2:4.  God’s ways are always righteous and just.  His people must learn to trust Him and live by faith in who He is!  We please God only when we live by faith!  (Hebrews 11:6)  God promised Habakkuk that He would judge the wicked and bring woe to those who live for themselves.  He also promised to fill the earth with His glory!  (Habakkuk 2:14)

Habakkuk ended his book with a prayer and a psalm.  The prayer was for God to renew His deeds in their day and time.  (Habakkuk 3:2) The psalm told of the splendor of the Lord as He would come to judge the earth and deliver His people.  He was prepared to wait on God, no matter what!  Living by faith is how the righteous are victorious!

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Sunday rest and reflection!

Sunday August 24th, 2014

Dear Friends of Jesus,

August is flying by and Labor Day is just next week!  As we reflect on our summer and the events of our world, we are reminded of our need for our Lord’s grace and protection.  Our world is spinning towards judgement day and signs of the time of Christ’s return are on the news each day.  Countries of the Middle East are in turmoil and war is spreading as well as persecution of Christ’s Bride, the Church!  We must band together to encourage each other and stand against the wiles of our enemy, Satan.  Jesus will soon appear for His Church!

Come join us at GSC for worship, Bible Study, prayer and the Word of God!  His Spirit is moving on the earth and in the Church!  These are exciting times for those who are strong in the Lord and centered on His Word!

In His Love,

Pastor John and Mary

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Learning to connect through faith!

Scripture reading for February 14: Numbers 13-16

We are prone to be strongly influenced by what we see and what our past experiences have conditioned us to believe and understand.  In my younger days, I wanted to learn to fly an airplane.  Several of my friends and I bought a Cessna 172 with instrument rating.  The flight instructor would put a hood over my head so I could only see the instrument panel, and off we would go.  When we would turn, or go up or down, I had to watch the instruments to learn where the wings were.  My mind would play tricks on me.  It sometimes felt like we were flying sideways or going up or down, but the instruments told the truth.  When flying airplanes I had to learn to trust the instruments!

The twelve Israelite spies were sent into the promised land.  They were told to determine what the land was like and what the inhabitants of that land were like.  It was a military assessment.  God had already told them that the land was flowing with milk and honey.  He had already told them that He would take care of the inhabitants.  God was to them like the instruments in the plane.  If they had kept their focus on what God had said, they would not have veered off course!  Two spies actually did keep on course, Joshua and Caleb!  (Numbers 13:30)  Ten spies got their eyes on the difficulties and began to spread fear, doubt and unbelief!  (Numbers 13:31-33)

The whole community got into the act and began to complain and grumble against Moses and the Lord, saying that God and Moses had brought them this far to let them die.  They talked of stoning Moses and the glory of the Lord appeared at the Tent of Meeting.  God viewed their grumbling and rebellion against Moses as against Him!  (Numbers 14:11, 27)  God’s judgment on them was to give them what they had feared–the whole generation 20 years and older died in the desert! They all would wander in the wilderness for 40 years as punishment for their rebellion!  (Numbers 14:29-35)  Don’t live by your sight and feelings alone,  keep your focus on the instruments (God’s Word) and avoid a crash!

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Sunday rest and reflection!

January  19th, 2014

Dear Friends,

The stories of the patriarchs of Genesis show us that life back then was not much different than our day.  There were quarrels among families, favoritism, jealousy, and scheming to get ahead.  People of faith did not always get it right, but God used the circumstances and weaknesses to accomplish a bigger purpose.  I believe He is still doing that today!  Thank God for His mercy and for His promises!

As you order your day today, make God’s house and God’s Word a priority!  Set your heart to seek out His  bigger purposes for your life!  God is up to something good–no matter where you are right now or what it feels like!   God bless you and your family!

In His Love, Pastor John and Mary

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