“Obey those who rule over you, and be submissive, for they watch out for your souls, as those who must give account. Let them do so with joy and not with grief, for that would be unprofitable for you.”Hebrews 13:17 NKJV
October has been designated as Pastor Appreciation month. All good churches will take time to honor and celebrate their pastor this month. A church’s pastor is one of their greatest treasures. There is no such thing as a perfect pastor but that does not matter. God demands that a congregation should love and respect their pastor. They must treat him with the honor and dignity that is due to the pastoral office.
God would have you to know that your pastor has the legitimate authority to lead the church. He is worthy of your respect and you should treat him as a leader and a friend. You should always pray for him and offer him your hands as helping hands. Deacons should shoulder their share of the ministry, and their share is probably more than they have been doing in the past.
Your pastor is not part of the furniture of the church, do not take him for granted. You should pay him as much as you can, indeed pay him a little more than you can afford. Above and beyond his salary, pay his ministry expenses. Understand that he will make mistakes and that he does get tired. He needs time off and adequate vacation time. Make sure he has it and make sure that he takes it.
A pastor is not hired by the church, he is called by God. He has been charged with the great responsibility of caring for the souls of his people. He is never off duty because his greatest desire is to fulfill his responsibility to the people he loves and the God he serves.
The challenge for the church is this. Learn from your pastor’s teaching, follow his lead and strive to be made perfect. You should also resolve to never hinder, nor allow anyone else to hinder, your pastor as he fulfills the functions of his office and position as your pastor. Finally, always treat your pastor as if he is the greatest pastor you have ever had and he probably will be.
As a preacher and teacher of the Gospel I have always felt compelled to encourage people to read the Bible daily. I do this because I feel it is important to have first hand knowledge of God’s Word. The fact is most of the biblical knowledge many people have is wrong. It is wrong because it is learned from someone else. Read the Bible yourself, let your knowledge of God’s Word come from God Himself
I hope everyone will accept this challenge to read the Bible. If you are a Christian, read it everyday and your faith will be made stronger. When lost people read the Bible everyday I believe they will be drawn to Christ. A broken-hearted person finds comfort when their tears fall daily on the open pages of a Bible. Addictions can be overcome by the daily reading of God’s Word. Oh, if you are an atheist, read the Bible daily to prove that there is no God, and let me know how that works out for you.
You will scare some people to death if you read the Bible everyday. False teachers will be scared because they can no longer lead you wrong. False preachers will be scared because they will be revealed. Real preachers will be scared because they are going to have to work harder to stay ahead of you. Politicians will be scared because Bible readers will not be misled by their lies. Socialists hate Bible readers because God’s word is truth and truth has given us freedom that we will not surrender. Satan trembles when you read the Bible everyday because you will learn to resist the devil and when you do he will have to flee.
I wish everyone would read the Bible everyday. Daily Bible reading will put God’s words in your mind forever and they will guide you everyday. Your sleep will be peaceful because His words are on guard. And when you wake, the first words you hear will be God saying “Good morning My child.” The Bible can be a lamp for your path and a light to brighten your future. And when you stumble the Word of God will gently lift you up and help you to have abundant life.
So read the Bible daily. It will do you good and help you too. Faithfully reading God’s Word will change the life of you and your family. If enough of us read the Bible, it will also change our country and our world. That is what will happen if you read the Bible everyday.
What is a conqueror? A conqueror is someone who enters into battle with the knowledge that he might lose. Yet with courage and determination he pours all he has into the battle seeking to overcome the enemy. Hoping that he will be victorious.
However, the Bible tells us that a child of God is more than a conqueror. What does it mean to be more than a conqueror? Well, a person who is more than a conqueror knows that the fight is fixed and he cannot lose. As we enter the battle, we know that we can be wounded and injured. There will be times when we are frightened and discouraged. And yet, we are more than conquerors, because we have the assurance that whoever is born again has already overcome the world. Our hope is in Christ and He has already made us victorious.
Yes, those of us who are more than conquerors are assured of victory before the battle even begins. When Moses demanded that Pharaoh let the Israelites go, Pharaoh was already defeated. The walls of Jericho could not stand, because Joshua obeyed the instructions of the Commander of the Army of the Lord. And the giant Goliath had no chance against a little shepherd boy, because David knew that the battle belonged to the Lord.
We have this promise, if God is for us then no one can stand against us. So, I’m absolutely convinced that nothing—nothing living or dead, angelic or demonic, today or tomorrow, high or low, thinkable or unthinkable can defeat us. If Jesus is your Lord, absolutely nothing can come between you and God’s love. Victory is ours because in Christ we are More than Conquerors
Isaiah, Jeremiah, Lamentations, Ezekiel and Daniel. The writers of these books of the Bible are called major prophets. However, these men would not be popular preachers in todays world. They would be canceled by the woke culture. Talking heads in the news industry would call them religious kooks. Most politicians would label them as right wing terrorists. The elite denominational leaders would shun them and call them conspiracy theorist .
Isaiah was a visionary and Jeremiah was tenderhearted. God gave Ezekiel a hard head and He blessed Daniel with the gift of diplomacy. These men were called by God, led by God and answered only to God. They knew that it was not their responsibly to please people. They were called to say, “ thus says the Lord.” Their responsibility was to speak God’s truth regardless of the consequences.
A pandemic of stupidity has infected the world today. It is a direct result of religious leaders who are controlled by the prevailing winds of popular opinion. Many churches have decided that putting rear ends in pews is more important than putting truth in people’s hearts. They would rather disobey God than offend people. Instead of standing on the word of God, they listen to news media, entertainment figures and politicians. This is why churches are dying and souls are being lost.
God’s people need to be like the great prophets in the Bible. All of us need to be visionaries with tender hearts, hard heads and like Daniel be diplomatic but willing to brave a den of hungry lions. The world does not need any more smiling preachers or tolerant Christians. It needs prophets whose feet are planted on foundations of righteousness. It needs followers of Christ who are rooted and grounded deep in God’s Word.
That old long con artist Satan has stung society into lunacy. Now it is time for Christians to stop going along with anything in order to get along with everyone. We must take the old prophets as our mentors and be willing to suffer anything for our God and Savior. We are God’s watchmen so let us exercise our right and responsibility to be salt and light to a dark and rotting world.
Nehemiah was an Israelite who loved God. He was heartbroken when he heard that his nation and the city of Jerusalem was broken and in distress. He spent many days mourning and fasting for his people. In the Bible, the book of Nehemiah is the story of how God heard and answered Nehemiah’s prayer.
In Nehemiah 1:5-11, we find Nehemiah’s prayer. Today I am going to borrow Nehemiah’s thoughts and adapt his prayer to fit the world we live in. This is my prayer.
Lord God in heaven, the Creator and Sustainer of all things. You are the great and wonderful God who keeps Your gracious promises to those who love You and keep your commands. But you are also a righteous God who allows us to suffer the consequences of disobedience. Please let Your eyes be open and Your ears be attentive to hear my cry as I lift up my voice to You and pray for Your children and this hurting nation.
I confess the sins we have committed against You. Lord we have been faithless and sinned. We have allowed entertainers to become advisors and given sports figures hero status. We have passively watched as many who were elected to serve this nation wrongfully establish themselves as our rulers. We have acted unfaithfully toward You and have not kept the commandments that You gave to us through Your servant Moses. Lord, we are an unholy people. We suffer as a result of our sinfulness.
Lord, I know that if we treasure sin in our hearts You will not hear our prayers. I know that you will not bless the life of the unrighteous man. But You have promised that if we your people, who are called by your name, will humble ourselves and pray, and if we turn from our wicked ways then You will hear from heaven and heal our land. I know Lord, that in this nation Your people indeed are few. However, You are not concerned with numbers, but seek to honor the ones who have broken and contrite heart.
God, we are Your servants and Your people. You have redeemed us by Your great power and strong hand. Please, Lord, let Your ear be attentive to my prayer and to the prayers of all Your servants who delight in Your name. Give Your servants success today, and have compassion on us in the presence of evil men as we attempt to reclaim this land for Your Glory.
In the Power and Authority of the Lord Jesus Christ I pray. Amen
I confess, like most people, sometimes I miss important words in the Bible. For instance in Matthew 11:11 Jesus says “Among those born of women there has not risen one greater than John the Baptist.” As often as I have read that passage of scripture until recently I had not considered the word, “risen.” This is important because John was not born great. Jesus is telling us that John the Baptist rose to greatness.
Yes I know that the circumstances of John’s birth were miraculous. However, that was not what made him great. John became great when he rose up and unashamedly preached the need for repentance. Pointing to Jesus he joyfully proclaimed that He was the Lamb of God. Then John rose up and fearlessly pointed out the sins of King Herod. After this he relentlessly clung to the Kingdom of Heaven even as the axe separated his head from his body. No, he was not born great, but by his faith John rose to greatness.
Strangely enough after Jesus honors the greatness of John, He then turns to you and I and says “He who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than John.” I believe that through these words Jesus is issuing a challenge to all of us. This is the challenge; Godly men must rise for the Glory of God and by faith cling to the kingdom of heaven.
This time we live in is strange and terrifying. This world has a need for great men who will stand up for righteousness and the Kingdom of God. These men will not come from the entertainment or sports venues. Nor will they come from the pulpit or political world. The Holy Sprit is looking for ordinary men who will sink to their knees in prayer and stand up to do battle with the enemy.
For the sake of our children and grandchildren, it is time for ordinary men to cling to the Kingdom of Heaven and by faith rise up to greatness.
A large source of contention between many husbands and wives is that the husband does not talk much. I suppose it has always been this way. Most men do not feel a need to talk. When they do, they use short sentences and mostly single syllable words. This drives their wives crazy. They wonder does my husband love me? Well yes he does, but he is most comfortable saying nothing.
Now, men have a good precedence for not being talkative. Joseph the husband of Mary was one of the most well respected men in the Bible. And yet no one can quote anything Joseph said. Joseph was a good man who sought the best for his fiancé. He was a thoughtful man who carefully considered the path that he was to travel. He was a listening man who was able to hear the angel say, “You are to take Mary as your wife and call the baby Jesus.” Joseph was a quiet man and in all of this we find that Joseph said nothing.
Now I am not defending the tendency of men to be silent. I, like most men, need to learn to better express my thoughts and feelings to my loved ones. However, I do want to challenge men to step up and become men of God. A great problem in the world today is brought about by Satan’s mostly successful plan to destroy the family. This problem is the huge number of children who have no father because of rampant divorce and unwed pregnancy. This issue is as prevalent in the church as it is out. And just like most men are silent, the churches of today are loudly saying nothing.
Joseph did not have to be a daddy to Jesus. But he listened to God and did it anyway. That is what real men do. We listen to God. Hear me men, it is time for you to step up and become the righteous leaders of the church. It is time to address the uncomfortable issues. It is time for men to be Godly daddies to their own children. It is time for men to be righteous father figures to those who have no daddy.
Now I may have lead you to believe that the Bible did not record anything that Joseph ever said. But that is not quite right. You see, when Mary’s baby was born Joseph called His name Jesus. Today we need Godly and righteous men who will speak the name of Jesus to the world. When it comes to saying anything better than that, I can think of nothing.
The Israelites were slaves in Egypt. It was a hard life. The Egyptians were cruel and heartless masters. So the Israelites called out for God to rescue them. God heard their cry and sent Moses to lead them out of Egypt. They were promised a land of milk and honey but the journey was going to be hard.
Now the promises of God are sure and certain, but the road to receiving these promises can be difficult and often terrifying. For the Israelites, the journey to the promise land was hard. Their leader, Moses had to constantly deal with people who wanted to go back. These people would gladly have traded their freedom for melons, cucumbers and safety. Because of the ones who wanted to go back, a whole generation of Israelites died without ever receiving the Promise of God.
In the Gospel of John you can read of a time when Jesus had many followers. They followed Him because of the free food and healthcare that he provided. They also followed Him because of the miracles He performed. But then Jesus quit performing and in John 6, His teaching became difficult. They began to realize that following Jesus was going to be a dangerous journey. Many of them decided that the promise of God was going to cost them too much so they went back to their old life.
God has a promise for those who follow Jesus. It is a promise of salvation and eternal life. The road we travel when we follow Jesus is often intimidating and toilsome. Many people start out after Jesus but fall away when His teaching demands they take up their cross and follow Him. Those who go back from following after Jesus will never experience the promises of God, but for the ones who persist there is a crown laid up in Glory.
Jesus is the way. Following Him is not easy. But when we walk through the valley of the shadow of death we need not be afraid. His rod of protection and staff of guidance will give us comfort. One day we will lie down in the green pastures of His love and dwell in the presence of our God forever. This is the promise of God that will be received by the ones who follow Jesus and never go back.