July 8 “Salvation … by grace alone through faith alone”

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“Salvation by grace alone through faith alone”—This truth is central to our faith and must be strongly guarded and taught.

Today’s Readings:
2 Chronicles 11 & 12
Psalm 80.14-19
Proverbs 20.19-21
Acts 15.1-21

2 Chronicles 11 & 12:

Direct your heart

Notice verse 12.14 about Rehoboam, “… he did evil, because he did not prepare his heart to seek the Lord.” The NASB says, “he did not set his heart to seek the Lord.” Other translations of that word include “to direct” or “to stand upright” or at attention.

Rehoboam was a mediocre king because he had a mediocre relationship with God. He never completely forsook God, he just never sought Him wholeheartedly. He didn’t pray as his father did for the wisdom he needed to rule the kingdom. He didn’t search the Scriptures to know the heart of God and obtain His wisdom. Matthew Henry in his commentary on the Bible says, “… he engaged not, his heart to seek the Lord …”

So how do we prepare our hearts to seek the Lord? We must direct our hearts to seek after the Lord. Our hearts, as the old hymn says, are prone to wander, we don’t automatically seek the Lord. We must purpose to do so. We first need to ask God for His help, we need to read and study “at attention”. And finally, we need to set our minds, be determined, to obey those things He shows us. Continue reading

July 7 “Consequences & bad advice” & LINKUP

bad counselTruth isn’t always comfortable or pleasing to our sinful, selfish nature, but it’s the truth that will deliver us from the consequences of foolishness and sin. Bad advice, on the other hand, tickles our ears and gives us the “go ahead” to do what we really want to do.

Today’s Readings:
2 Chronicles 9 & 10
Psalm 80.7-13
Proverbs 20.16-18
Acts 14.1-28

2 Chronicles 9 & 10:

Empty abundance

Can you imagine the wealth, the gold, the precious stones? Silver was too common to be called valuable—such riches and abundance! Solomon saw it all and had it all! And yet, in the book of Ecclesiastes, he said if that’s where you’re looking to find your peace,  joy and satisfaction, it’s all fleeting!

Hollywood

We see evidence of that all over the news these days. If wealth and beauty and fame and success could bring peace and joy, Hollywood should be the happiest places on earth. And yet, it’s elite often go from one partner to another, from one “high” to another, with few finding true peace and satisfaction. Continue reading