The Word of God is always right. It is always right about everything. You may have an incredible IQ or you may be abundantly ignorant, however, if you say, ” I know what the Bible says but this is what I think.” Be assured of this. God does not care what you think. If you disagree with God you are wrong and He is right. Always.
The Word of God is never wrong. Maybe your circumstances have led you to think you can disregard His teaching, but you are wrong. Perhaps your situation causes you to feel as if His commandments don’t apply to your life. If so, you need to know that your feelings are wrong. Understand this. His ways are higher than your ways and His thoughts are higher than your thoughts. If you disagree with the Word of God, you are wrong and He is right.
God is never wrong! Never!
The Word of God is righteous. Some people have issues with the things the Bible teaches. Their perception of God is that He is cold and heartless. But they don’t know that God is omnipotent or that He transcends time. He was in the beginning and He is in the future. God has seen the actions of men in the past and knows the results of these actions in the future.
Do not trust your own understanding, but take joy in the Lord’s instructions. Meditate on His Word day and night and you will find that His Word is always righteous. Always.
My favorite place for a morning quiet time is the back porch. Here I can see the sunrise, feel the morning breeze, and listen as the birds start their business for the day. Knowing that days have started like this for thousands of years helps me to draw close to the God of hope and glory.
As I sit and try to commune with God, my dog will pester me for attention. She stands on my left nudging my hand begging me to pet her. When I ignore her she goes around to the other side and nudges my right hand. If I continue to ignore her she comes around in front of me and plops her big ol head down on top of my Bible. When I push her back and continue to read she will lie down at my feet and wait until I decide to pay attention to her.
Why does she so persistently seek my attention? Is it because I feed her and take care of her? No. She would be loyal to me even if I did not feed her. She is persistent because she longs for my touch. Because I am her master, Her greatest joy is in the touch of my hand.
Like this dog I long for my Masters touch. While I sit on the porch and watch the sunrise I look expectantly to God. With the morning breeze He fulfills His promise as He opens His hand and satisfies my great desire with an amazing caress. The birds pay no attention to worldly affairs, as they have for thousands of years they just go about their daily business of singing to the Glory of God. So through it all, I remember this; God is righteous in all His ways and gracious in all His works. And He has promised To be near to all who call upon Him. If we seek first His Kingdom He will fulfill our greatest desires with the touch of His Hand.
In the first chapter of the Bible we read the glorious story of how all things came to be. It is a marvelously simple record of God coming from nowhere, standing on nothing, and by the power of His Word, speaking everything into existence. After the creation of all things, He created one more thing. He created rest. In the day of rest, He looked around at all things and said “This is good”.
Deborah and I once spent a weekend on top of Lookout Mountain. Now this mountain is well named because from its peak you can look out and see a beautiful and majestic world. The grandeur of the river and woods remind you of God’s opinion that this world is good.
Also, from the top of Lookout Mountain, you could smell the smoke of a distant fire and hear the lonesome whistle of a faraway train. As I looked at the cities and towns, with their busy factories and highways, I knew this too was God’s plan. Because after He created all things, He turned to man and said “This is yours to have dominion over.” I believe that when God looks at the works of man He smiles and says “ This is good.”
It is good to go up a mountain sometimes. Because down here the world looks pretty messed up. Wars and rumors of wars and the wickedness of man make this world look hopelessly bad. But on the mountain, you can see the world as God sees it. He is The Great I AM. He has said, I am God and I change not. Because He does not change, His creation is still good. Jesus Christ is the Light of the world and God the Father still says, “It is good.”
The men were laughing and talking as they enjoyed the meal. When the door opened, they turned to see a woman enter the room. In her hand, she held a beautiful alabaster box. The container itself was very valuable and the men knew that the oil it held was worth more than they could earn in a year. Maybe, they thought she is going to give it to Jesus for His ministry.
They watched as she moved to where Jesus sat. The Master closed His eyes as she stood over Him. Then the disciples gasped as she did the unthinkable. Cracking the container open, she poured all of its contents onto Jesus’ head. The precious ointment soak His hair and ran down His head. Mixing with His tears, it flowed through His beard and soaked his clothes. The sweet smell of this extravagant action filled every corner of the room.
The disciples were furious. They could not understand how anyone could be so wasteful. They thought, “We could have sold this perfume and fed many poor people. We could have expanded the ministry. We could have done great things with the money.” Sadly, they have allowed the smell of money to overwhelm the precious aroma of this woman’s sacrifice.
But Jesus said; Leave the woman alone. She has done a great thing for Me. There will always be poor people, but in a few days, I will not be here. You call her extravagance wasteful. But by pouring this precious ointment onto me, she is preparing my body for burial.
Most of the disciples truly loved Jesus. But they had not yet learned that the purest form of worship is an unreserved sacrifice. Anything that money can buy will soon be forgotten but what this woman did will be honored wherever the gospel is proclaimed. Her audacious gift teaches us that a life broken and poured out for Jesus is never wasted.
Christmas Day has come and gone. With all the excitement and dreams, it was inevitable that some people would be disappointed by Christmas. Some children opened their presents to find underwear and many parents where heartbroken because children and grandchildren could not come home this year. Sometimes the plays and cantatas don’t fulfill your expectations while the family gatherings may have made you wonder how you can possibly be kin to those people. Yes, Christmas has come and gone and left some people disappointed.
However, dissatisfaction started with the very first Christmas. From the very beginning God has promised a Savior, and a Messiah. People were looking for a priest like Melchizedek, a prophet like Moses, a general like Joshua and a king like David. They expected the King of kings to be born in a palace and heralded by royalty. The royal nursery should have been glamorous and the royal bedding should have been fine linen.
But no, this first Christmas was a disappointment to many. The King of kings was born in the insignificant town of Bethlehem. His nursery was a stable, His bedding was old rags and hay. The Child would be raised in Nazareth and everybody knew that nothing good ever came from Nazareth and certainly not the Messiah.
The first Christmas however was exactly as it was supposed to be. If people were disappointed it was because they did not know The Father or His plan. The Savior came the first time as a Suffering Servant to seek and save the lost. The next time He comes it will be as a Conquering King to destroy the destroyer. The first time He came He was wrapped in rags, the next time He comes He will be robed in Glory. The first time He came He saved the sinners, the next time He comes He will claim His bride.
Christmas is a hard time of the year for many people. If that includes you then My heart goes out to you. But be encouraged, you may be disappointed at Christmas time but you will never be disappointed with Christ. As our Savior He gives us hope, as our Messiah He gives us peace, as our Lord He gives us comfort and as our King He gives us the victory. And please don’t forget that Jesus brings joy to the world and joy to you and me.
When God delivered His final message through Malachi, (who wrote the last book of the Old Testament), He stopped communicating with man for nearly 400 years. It was a deafening silence in divine revelation. After 400 years God broke His silence by sending angels to speak to Zacharias, Mary and Joseph. The message they heard was this. The fullness of time had come and the promised Messiah would soon be born. God had broken His silence with the sound of Christmas.
For us today a long year is winding down. We have celebrated a day of thanksgiving with our families. The shopping season has begun with a vengeance and December has rolled in with a blast of cold air. But listen, the Salvation Army bells are ringing, someone somewhere is singing, “Do you hear what I hear” and the radio is playing, “The Little Drummer Boy”. Now our hearts have to be lifted because these are the sounds of Christmas.
I hear the sound of grandchildren saying; let me tell you what I want for Christmas. There is a sound of laughter as people decorate the tree and a rustling of paper as the gifts are wrapped. Listen carefully and you can hear the sound of hope, especially if your hope is in Christ. Tune your ears just right and hear the sound of joy that is inexpressible and full of glory. Lift your heart with a song of praise because all around us are the sounds of Christmas.
I pray that the melody of peace will fill your hearts today. May you have peace within yourself as you put away your past and know that you can face the future without fear. Let us have peace with each other as our hearts hum the songs of forgiveness, love and charity. I hope that the song of God’s peace will rule in your heart. I hope you feel His hand on your shoulder as He guides you through life and may you hear His voice as He whispers words of comfort. Be still and listen to the heartbeat of Jesus. It is in His heartbeat that you will truly hear the Sound of Christmas.
Throughout the years that I was privileged to pastor a church, we always started the Christmas season with a special evening service. The Sunday afternoon following Thanksgiving we would take the children of the church to a tree farm and let them choose a Christmas tree for the church sanctuary. When we returned to the church, we would spend the rest of the afternoon putting the tree in the sanctuary and hanging lights on it. Usually we would finish just as the rest of the congregation arrived for the evening service.
We would begin worship that night by singing Christmas hymns and reading the story of Jesus’ birth. Each member had been asked to bring an ornament from home that held a special meaning to them. As an act of worship, we would then take time for everyone to hang their ornaments on the tree. Then I would read a special story about the journey of the Christ Child from the stable to the cross.
As we brought our time of worship to an end, myself as the pastor would hang my special ornament on the tree. My ornament was three spike nails fashioned in the shape of a cross. But I would not hang this cross on the outer branches of the tree. I would hide the cross out of sight on an inner branch. The hidden cross was a reminder that Christ Child whose birth we were celebrating with a Christmas tree had another tree in His future. One day the Son of Man would purchase for us the gift of eternal life by sacrificing His life on that tree shaped like a cross.
So this Christmas season, as we navigate the hubris of flying reindeer, jolly old elves and a little drummer boy, let’s not forget the true meaning of Christmas. Let the beautiful lights remind us that Jesus is the Light of the world and the evergreen trees shall symbolize our hope of eternal life. Underneath the trees will be beautifully wrapped gifts, but the greatest gift of all was wrapped in swaddling clothes and laid in a manger.
“For unto us a Child is born, Unto us a Son is given. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” The Angels in Heaven will shout these words: “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, goodwill toward men!”
I love woodworking but I am not an expert. As a matter of fact I cannot saw a straight line and I seldom measure the same way twice. Recently while working in my shop, I was building a chest and trying to do it perfectly. However, no matter how hard I tried I could not cut the boards correctly. They were either to short, to long, crooked or the angles were wrong. I was getting frustrated.
Then I stopped talking to the wood, and had a stern conversation with myself. I told myself, “ You are doing this because you enjoy it. If you are not enjoying why are you doing it?” With that thought in mind, I decided to just relax and not try so hard.
From then on everything seemed to go smoother. Yes, I still make mistakes. Cuts are often crooked and angles are sometimes wrong. Really my work is full of imperfections. But I no longer stress about it. I choose to let the imperfections be part of the character and beauty of the work. No longer do I concern myself with what others might say. I simply do what I do for the joy of doing it.
Recently my daily Bible reading had me in Numbers chapter 28. As I read, I thought about how frustrated the people must have been as they tried to please God. They had laws to keep that they could never keep. So they had to make many sacrifices to atone for the laws they constantly broke. They were imperfect people trying to be perfect. They lived their lives trying to please God. But they never could no matter how hard they tried.
For many people worshiping God is frustrating and no fun. If this is you, then stop trying so hard. Relax, rest in God. Love Him with all your heart, soul, might and mind. I thank God there is no condemnation for those of us who are in Christ. The Spirit of life is in Jesus and He has set us free from the laws we cannot keep. In the past we tried to please God, but we are imperfect and cannot. So let us stop trying to please God and simply love Him with the power of the Holy Spirit that lives in us. Then we will no longer be frustrated.
Lord, once there were people who were told by their government how they must worship. They were told who they would serve and what their doctrines would be. But You stirred their hearts and they rose up in defiance of the tyrannical rulers. They bravely risked their lives and sacrificed all they had for religious freedom.
Lord, once again we find ourselves oppressed by a government who would tell us how we must worship, who we will serve and what our doctrines will be. Lord you once stirred the hearts of your people to rise up in defiance of an unjust government, My prayer today is that you will do it again Lord
Lord, this great nation was born when men were stirred to fight for their Independence and freedom. Brave men realized that they were endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights. Lord you stirred the hearts of these brave men to stand up to despotism and demand the right to live in a land of truth, justice and righteousness. Today I beg you Lord, please do it again!
Lord, once you raised up great men to lead this nation. These men were not politicians who could be bought or swayed by vagrant ideologies. No, truly great leaders are valiant statesmen who stand on Biblical principles and refuse to be bought or bullied by ungodly men or entities. Lord you once raised up true leaders to guide this nation, please Lord do it again.
Lord, you once raised up prophetic men who were unafraid to stand before evil and corrupt leaders and proclaim , “Thus says the Lord’. Heavenly Father we once again need a Moses to say, “Let my people go”. Once again we need an Elijah to challenge the false gods and the evil Jezebels of today. Once again we need a Nathan who will stand before the nation’s leaders and say, “be sure you sins will find you out”. Once again we need a Jeremiah who will weep over this broken nation as he boldly proclaims a truth that burns in his bones. Once again we need a man like John the Baptist who will shout loudly, “Repent, because the Kingdom of God is at hand” Lord you raised these men up once, today I beg You please do again.
Lord, in past centuries you stirred the hearts of common people to call out to you and from these stirrings great awakenings were born. During these times of revival, fearless evangelist thundered across this land preaching that you must be born again. They proclaimed the truth of God’s word and did not hesitate to call evil, evil and sin, sin. Lord, we desperately need for You to do it again
Lord, once you made this nation great. But now we wallow in sin. The cesspool of sodomy is forced on us by evil men. Right is called wrong and wrong is called right. Today righteous people are ridiculed and perverted people are celebrated. How long Lord will you strive with wicked men.
Lord, you have told us that we who are your people must humble ourselves and pray, and that if we will turn from our wicked ways, then you will hear from heaven and heal our land.
Lord you once made this nation great; it is my humble prayer that you will please do it again.
I believe that laughter of children is sweet music and the love of a child can put a song in your heart. I believe that the sweat from hard work feels good and the reward of working hard is a good feeling. I believe that reading the Bible while the sun comes up is the best way to start the day. A cup of coffee while talking to God will make the day good to the last drop. The Bible tells us in Romans 15:13 “ The God of hope will fill you with all joy and peace as you believe in Him so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”
Jesus said whoever believes in Him will never die and I know this to be true. I also am convinced that whoever does not believe in Jesus has never lived. Belief is a powerful thing. It can imprint on your life unending hope and it can erase from your life debilitating fear. Belief in the Savior has caused crippled men to walk, blind men to see and dead men to live. I believe that God is good and greatly to be praised. I will praise God in all things, good and bad.
God has promised that with a little faith, we can prayerfully move mountains. If you have faith the size of a mustard seed, your prayers can bring healing to the sick, salvation to the lost and hope to the hopeless. This is true for all of us who believe in the power of Jesus our Savior. Sometimes in our human frailties, we struggle to believe this. But if we cry out to Jesus, He will help us in our unbelief.
I believe that my sins are great but God’s forgiveness is greater. I believe that when I fall my Jesus will be there to pick me up. In my weakness, I often stumble but I have this certain assurance that there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. I know that I am righteous, but only because of the shed blood of Jesus. So for this reason I have firmly planted my feet on the Rock of my salvation. This salvation is found only in Jesus Christ the Son of God. HE is the One in whom I believe.