“Disappointed or Angry at God?” October 24

 

Are you angry at God?Do you know someone who used to come to church, but somewhere along the line they became disillusioned or angry at God? Maybe He didn’t answer their prayers or work the way they thought He should. Maybe that’s you!

Also read about prayer, obedience, godly friends, requirements for church leadership and the importance of good doctrine.

 

Today’s Readings:
Jeremiah 33 & 34
Psalm 119.57-64
Proverbs 27.21
1 Timothy 3.1-16

 

Disappointed or Angry at God?

 

1 Timothy 3.1-16:

What should church leaders look like?

In this chapter Paul lists the characteristics we should look for in a man’s life before considering him for leadership in the church. The first list is for elders, pastors, bishops or overseers. The words are used interchangeably.

The second list is for deacons. Deacons serve in various other areas of the church, under the leadership of the pastors and elders. Both are extremely important. Paul emphasizes the fact that we should not be quick to put people in leadership positions (“not a novice” v. 6), but should wait to see the fruit of the Spirit manifested in their lives over a period of time. Placing someone in leadership before they are spiritually mature enough to handle it can lead to pride and a fall (v. 6-7).

 

Good Doctrine Matters

Good DoctrineVerse 15 says that the church is to be “the pillar and ground of the truth.” The church is to support and teach the truth.

All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for doctrine (teaching us what is right), for reproof (showing us when we’re wrong), for correction (teaching us how to get it right), and for instruction in righteousness (helping us live a godly lifestyle) (2 Tim. 3.16-17).

Good doctrine helps us see the tests and trials of life through the lens of Scripture. Good doctrine helps us know God for who He is, not as a God of our own making. Good doctrine grows our faith and trust in Him and prevents disappointment when He doesn’t work the way we think He should.

Bad doctrine on the other hand can lead us into all kinds of error, including a false assurance of salvation (Matt. 7.21-23).

One of the most widespread and pernicious is the faith and prosperity teaching. If you’ve been taught there’s a miracle in your mouth; that God wants you rich; that if you have enough faith or enough hands laid on you, you’ll be healed; or that your problem is a demon of lust, alcohol, or pornography … yet … after declaring “I’m healed” you’re not; after giving to get a promised reward, you’re still broke; or the lust, desire for alcohol, and pull of pornography is still there …, many become disappointed and walk away from God, even shake their fist at Him, because they believe they did their part and He failed to keep His end of the bargain.  Continue reading

February 27 “Keeping an eternal perspective”

Have you been hurt, rejected, or persecuted for your faith? How should a believer respond to such treatment? Check out today’s New Testament reading and see how keeping an eternal perspective makes all the difference.

eternal perspective

Today’s Readings:
Leviticus 23 & 24
Psalm 28.1-5
Proverbs 10.17-18
Mark 6.1-29

Leviticus 23 & 24:

Does He really “occupy” your life?

Chapter 23 gives instructions concerning the feasts that Israel was to celebrate. These feasts acknowledged and helped them remember God’s sovereign work in their lives, just as Easter and Christmas should do for us. That’s part of the tragedy with the commercialization of those holidays. Easter has become more about bunnies and eggs and less about Christ’s resurrection. Christmas is more about “what will I get” than remembering that the Creator of the Universe humbled Himself to be born in a stable as a little baby with dirty diapers, to grow to be a boy who respected and obeyed His parents, and finally, to be a man who was willing to be beaten, stripped and crucified for me and you!

Notice that the feasts and the sacrifices involved food: meat and grain, oil and wine, things used in the preparation of a meal. Remember that God repeatedly told His people He desired to dwell with them. In Revelation 3.20 Jesus said, “Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me.” 1 Corinthians 6.19 says that we are the “temple of the Holy Spirit.” And in John 1.14 it says that Jesus “became flesh and dwelt among us.”

That word “dwelt” comes from a root word meaning “to tent or encamp, to occupy (as a mansion) or to reside as God did in the Tabernacle of old. His dwelling with us speaks of protection and communion.

Does He really “occupy” your life? Or does He have to stay in the back room most of the time? Maybe He’s only with you on Sundays? Or maybe you say “no, He’s here all the time! I’m always talking about God and church!”

Then the question becomes, how are you doing at living your life in a way that makes Him pleased to be there? Are you going places, watching things, reading things, listening to things or saying things that grieve the Holy Spirit who lives in your “temple”? In other words, does your temple reflect the One who lives there? Continue reading