“Vows, Authority & Soul Winning” March 16

 

What does God say about our vows?

How does the ancient “Law of Vows” apply to us today? And what does it have to do with a right view of authority?

 

Today’s Readings:
Numbers 29 & 30
Psalm 34.15-22
Proverbs 11.30-31
Mark 14.27-54

 

Vows, Authority & Soul Winning

 

Numbers 29 & 30:

The “Law of Vows” & a Right View of Authority

 

Chapter 30 covers the “Law of Vows.” God takes truth and honoring our word seriously. Jesus said, “But let your ‘Yes’ be ‘Yes,’ and your ‘No,’ ‘No.’” (Matt. 5.37a”]).

God not only takes truth seriously, but He also takes authority seriously. Part of the “Law of Vows” addressed that fact. It said if a woman still lived in her father’s house or if she was married, her father or husband could overrule what she vowed.

Authority is still very important to God whether in our marriages, in the workplace, or in other areas of life.

We need to teach our children the importance of respect for authority, too. That means teaching them to respect their teachers, the police and other civil authorities, and even the other parent where divorce has taken place.

We should teach them both by instruction and by example. That means we must show respect to our spouses (& ex-spouses), their teachers and school officials, civil authorities, and our bosses.

Authority, however, stops when the other person asks us to sin. Sin would include Continue reading

“Is believing ‘in’ God enough?” November 21

 

Is believing in God enough? - Is believing in God enough to save us? If so, why would James say, "even the demons believe--and tremble"?Is believing in God enough to save us? If so, why would James say, “even the demons believe–and tremble”?

 

Today’s Readings:
Ezekiel 33 & 34
Psalm 130.5-8
Proverbs 29.1
James 2.1-26

 

Is believing “in” God enough?

 

James 2.1-26:

Orthodox Demons?

 

Watching, Warning & Orthodox Demons

Verse 19, “You believe that there is one God. You do well. Even the demons believe—and tremble!”

John MacArthur says that demons, while they seek to deceive others about the truths of God and while they chose to follow Satan, are orthodox in their theology. They know who Christ is, they know they are under His authority, and they know that one day they will be cast into the lake of fire (Mk. 5.6-10).

But just believing in God isn’t enough.

Do you know someone who claims to believe in God, but without any evidence of saving faith? This is a great verse to memorize and share. Believing in God does not save us, that is, merely, believing that He exists. It’s belief in the gospel that saves (Mk. 1.15; Rom. 1.16). It’s believing He is who He says He is and believing what He says is true.

Instead, many have some general idea of God as some kind of a benevolent Father. They often expect that He will weigh the good and the bad things we have done and since most of us think we’re really not that bad (Prov. 20.6), hope the good will outweigh the bad.

But the gospel is the truth that we are sinners dead in our trespasses and sins and unable to save ourselves. We cannot be saved by good works (Jn. 3.10, 3.23, 6.23; Eph. 2.8-9), nor through any amount of religion (going to church, being baptized, taking sacraments, etc.).

God sent His Son to pay the penalty for our sins. He died on the cross, was buried, and was raised again. We are saved by His grace when we admit that we are sinners in need of a Savior and by putting our faith in Him and Him alone to save us. It’s Jesus who saves us, but we must “receive,” choose to believe, the truth.

 

Today’s Other Readings:

 

Ezekiel 33 & 34:

Watching & Warning

 

1 Again the word of the LORD came to me, saying, 2 “Son of man, speak to the children of your people, and say to them: ‘When I bring the sword upon a land, and the people of the land take a man from their territory and make him their watchman, 3 when he sees the sword coming upon the land, if he blows the trumpet and warns the people, 4 then whoever hears the sound of the trumpet and does not take warning, if the sword comes and takes him away, his blood shall be on his own head. 5 He heard the sound of the trumpet, but did not take warning; his blood shall be upon himself. But he who takes warning will save his life. 6 But if the watchman sees the sword coming and does not blow the trumpet, and the people are not warned, and the sword comes and takes any person from among them, he is taken away in his iniquity; but his blood I will require at the watchman’s hand” (ch. 33.1-6).

Ezekiel was called to be a “watchman” to the people of His day. He was to warn the people of their need to repent and turn from their sin and idolatry. We, too, are “watchman” called to share the gospel with those around us. Matthew 28.19-20 says:

19 Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Amen.

If we are faithful to share God’s truth, even when it’s uncomfortable or inconvenient, we are free from guilt. But if we refuse, God says “their blood is on our hands.” Continue reading

Good Reads on Christmas Traditions, Resolutions & More

 

What I've Been Reading Christmas EssentialsI don’t know about you but I’m constantly blessed by the great posts I read on other sites. Here are a few I’ve enjoyed the last couple of weeks on Christmas traditions, possibly some New Year’s resolutions, our fear of witnessing, and more.

 

#1. If you need some creative ideas for Christmas and Christmas Eve, this is your list! From movies, to music, to making the season special, it’s here. Elizabeth’s “Christmas Eve Service” made me wish my children were young again!

The 12 Days of Christmas Things I Love by Elizabeth at Guilty Chocoholic Mama.

 

#2. There is a good chance we all need to be more faithful about this subject and Alison’s plan is the one I find the most helpful to many people. New Year’s resolution, anyone? (Speaking of New Year’s resolutions, don’t forget to sign up for the Bible in a Year posts for 2016.)

How to Memorize Scripture the Easy Way from Alison at The Life of Scoop.

#3. This is a great reminder that this is important to understand every day not just the first time faith came alive.

Do you understand the blessing of not working for salvation? by Lisa at Conforming to the Truth.

#4. If you have been thinking about doing the Daniel Fast after the first of the year, you might want to take advantage of this sale on Nannette’s Devotional.

Feasting to Fasting – the Daniel Fast Devotional is on sale!

#5. I can’t help myself, I have to share another post I enjoyed by Sharon. She has a gift for mixing humor with serious points. The most important serious point is about “the” black Friday that made all the difference! And there’s trivia at the end!

Black Friday Shopping by Sharon at Sharon Sharing God.

 

#6. Ren makes some excellent points about the refugee situation (especially the part about listening and not demonizing each other). We must learn to balance grace and truth. The quote about why we lock our doors is worth the price of admission.

Jesus the Refugee? by Ren at Redeemed of the Lord.

 

#7. This next post is a great reminder to not be afraid to allow people to see Christ in us, even if it’s mixed with our weaknesses, too.

What I’m Afraid to Say by Renee at Doorkeeper.

 

Featuring a post here doesn’t mean I always agree 100% or I would say things quite the same way, but that the thoughts and ideas are some we should think about.

I hope you enjoy visiting and reading these posts as much as I did. I’ll have more great reads to share with you in a week or so. What have you been reading that has blessed you?

December blessings,
Donna

 

 

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