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"The fruit of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace," says James 3:18. I believe in being straightforward but not trying to stir up trouble unnecessarily.
As Christians, we need to be ready to give a reason for the hope that lies within us (1 Peter 3:15). At the same time, we should attempt to come to agreement with people if possible.
Remember in responding to negativity from others that the devil always tries to pit individuals against each other. We are to remove invective and stick to issues.
Sometimes not taking offense easily allows others to calm down a bit. That doesn't mean everything is certain to end on a happy note, but at least we know we've done what God called us to do.
Get in touch with the Lord before the world can get to you. "You are my God; early will I seek you; my soul thirsts for you," says Psalm 63:1.
So often, we turn to the Lord late at night, when the day's work and adventures are through. But do we wake up thinking about him?
If he were in our mind from the beginning of our labors, our toil would be guided by him. The Holy Spirit would help us be efficient, focused and effective.
Put God first, and we'll see how to redeem the time, for the days are evil (Ephesians 5:16).
We must learn from the Lord. "Teach me to do your will, for you are my God; your Spirit is good," says Psalm 143:10.
Jesus was referred to as "Teacher" more than 40 times in Scripture. He instructs us still by his Spirit, who reminds us of the Lord's lessons (John 14:26).
This learning is so we will know the truth and be free in Christ to pursue all he has for us. Trust God to teach you his Word and his ways.
The Almighty isn't to be trifled with. “Give glory to the LORD your God before he causes darkness,” observes Jeremiah 13:16.
If we don't give Jehovah his credit, he knows how to turn off our spotlight. The Bible relates a number of instances when people refused to glorify God and they paid with their lives.
For example, evil tetrarch King Herod came to an awful but appropriate end. "Herod, arrayed in royal apparel, sat on his throne and gave an oration to them," which were those of Tyre and Sidon, says Acts 12:21-24. "The people kept shouting, 'The voice of a god and not of a man!' Then immediately an angel of the Lord struck him, because he did not give glory to God. And he was eaten by worms and died. But the Word of God grew and multiplied."
People like to deify each other, but the Holy Ghost will pay homage only to the true and living Lord.
"I honor My Father, and you dishonor me," Jesus says to the Jewish leaders in John 8:49-50. "I do not seek my own glory; there is One who seeks and judges."
Christ talks of his Father 155 times in the four Gospels. John's has the greatest number of these mentions, close to half. When Jesus does speak of himself, it is most often in a positional context and third person: “Son of Man,” for example.
Our Lord did this because he desires to reveal the true nature of the Father. That Divine Dad wants us to know him personally and have his love, power and reconciliation.
“The Father himself loves you,” Jesus says in John 16:27. Yes, and so do the Son and Holy Spirit. See how to be in community with God today.
Here's a lift for you. “Do not sorrow, for the joy of the LORD is your strength,” implores Nehemiah 8:10.
Faith in God should always bring hope. In context, his people are feeling condemned by their sin, but he's reminding them he brings life and that more abundantly.
No matter how dark the situation, Jehovah can turn it around in a moment. Whatever is necessary, he can supply. What we must remember is he is good and his mercy endures forever, so we have nothing to fear.
The Lord loves us too much to leave us as he found us. “This is the will of God, your sanctification,” Paul writes in 1 Thessalonians 4:3.
Not too many preachers touch this passage. In an era when clergy are adding sugar to the gospel, it is left out all too frequently.
We are not going to be sin-free, but we should be cooperating with God to get the shortcomings out of our lives. Willfully violating the Word damages our relationship with the Lord, while seeking to observe it is our reasonable service.
Let's let go of our worldliness and latch onto a sinless Savior.
The American president in a U.N. speech this week called for religious freedom across our globe. He's prioritizing making this reality for the 80 percent of the world's population living under oppression for their beliefs. The headlines that day, however, mainly concerned an unproven accusation without supporting evidence made against him by political opponents.
As my longtime profession of journalism becomes unrecognizable as news, I recall that media and false faith will aid and abet the rise and terror of Antichrist.
"I saw another beast ... had two horns like a lamb and spoke like a dragon. … He was granted power to give breath to the image of the beast, that ... as many as would not worship the image of the beast to be killed," states Revelation 13:11 & 15.
This describes the False Prophet, a religious leader likely with a Christian front (resembling a lamb) but a devilish mouth and allegiance. Those in media will help the False Prophet make it appear Antichrist has been mortally wounded and brought back to life, an illusion meant to mimic Jesus' very real resurrection.
"The lamp of the body is the eye. If therefore your eye is good, your whole body will be full of light," says Christ in Matthew 6:22-23. "But if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness." Don't follow the camera; pursue the truth.
We're in a fight, but God's in it to win it with us. “Do not rejoice over me, my enemy; when I fall, I will arise,” says Micah 7:8.
The Christian will not be perfect, as sins of omission and commission dot the landscape of our lives. However, a believer will not remain in that state if truly with the Lord.
"It has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when Christ is revealed, we shall be like him," says 1 John 3:2. The Spirit of God will rise within and overcome the devil by the blood of the Lamb and the word of testimony.
Believe that the Almighty can, will and is setting you back on your feet after a fall.
This is the last weekend of summer. The temperature is going down, but the heat of contention, accusation, hatred and hypocrisy is still near boiling.
"The harvest is past, the summer is ended, and we are not saved!" laments Jeremiah 8:20. Do not let this be your cry. God's arms are still wide open to anyone who will repent of sin, believe Jesus Christ rose on the third day, and follow him as Lord and Savior.
I am not talking about some unknowable entity, a theoretical construct or metaphysical mystery. The Lord God made the universe and all in it, and he desires to be known as our Father, Christ as our Brother, and the Holy Ghost our Counselor.
We say "God in Three Persons" because they are individuals yet corporately the Lord, much as a family is several members yet one. You and I can know intimately each in this divine trio through prayer, Scripture, fellowship, church, and relating to them all through the day.
Have you been hurt by this evil world? Come to the Father through the Son as led by the Spirit. They all desire to comfort, heal and love on you. Click here for how.
Some misrepresent the Lord, but "God is love" (1 John 4:8). Know his selfless affection, mercy and restoration today; do not wait, for one day, his grace will end and judgment begin.