October 31, 2019

BIBLE READING: John 12

“2 There they made him a supper; and Martha served:……”

She was always serving. I know sometimes Martha gets criticized. I know we’ve always made a big deal about the fact that even though Martha was a hard worker, Mary seemed to do the things that mattered even more. I certainly understand that, but I will make one comment. At least Martha was doing something. I know many Christians that don’t do either. Some don’t do anything. Maybe Martha became stressed by so much work, and maybe she got a little impatient with others if she did not feel that they were working as hard as she was, but she was always serving.

I could think of a lot of worse things to be said about someone. Wouldn’t it be great to have said at your funeral one day that you were always serving? We read about a lot of people that were always sitting, some that were always watching, and many religious men that were always criticizing, but Martha was always serving.

Could that be said about you? Could that be said about me? Maybe sometimes many of us are self-serving, but Martha was always others serving. She was always in the kitchen, she was always cooking something, she was always setting the table, and she was always mindful of others.

Yes, maybe she should have put the pots and pans down and spent a little more time at Jesus feet. Yes, maybe she should have spent a little more quality time feeding spiritually instead of working so hard to feed others physically. Maybe so, but at least she can say that she was not lazy, that she had a servants heart, that she constantly poured herself into the lives of others, and she also could say that whenever Jesus was near she served Him. Can we say that?

October 30, 2019

BIBLE READING: John 11

33 When Jesus therefore saw her weeping, and the Jews also weeping which came with her, he groaned in the spirit, and was troubled,

I first wanted to say that our staff men have done a tremendous job these past few weeks of doing the daily devotionals. I appreciate our church staff and all that they do.

In this interesting chapter, we have some insight into the love Jesus has for us. As I have looked up some quotes on this subject, I hope you enjoy these:

“The Holy Ghost is faithful and beloved. You do not realize what privileges you have until you are filled with the Holy Ghost. He makes intercessions for you with groanings which cannot be uttered. Now the groaning of Jesus could be uttered. Notice, He groaned in spirit and He uttered groans, but the Holy Ghost intercedes with groanings that cannot be uttered. You might pray a few words, but that prayer becomes special when it is groaned out by the Holy Ghost at the throne of God. Prayers that become groans always get answers.” Charles Stalker

“The best prayers have often more groans than words.” John Bunyan

“Our prayers, even when we pray, are not at full flood. There may be much phrasing and little passion.” Ralph Turnbull

“The spirit of prayers is the pressing forth of the soul out of this earthly life; it is stretching with all its desire after the life of God, to be one life, one love, one spirit with Christ in God”. William Law

“In prayer it is better to have a heart without words than words without heart.” Bunyan

“To obtain real heart stirring, heart wringing, and God moving earnestness in prayer, we must move out of ourselves into the realm of the Spirit.”

“When you find a promise, it will not fall into your lap. You must shake the tree by prayer”. Andrew Bonar

October 29, 2019

 

BIBLE READING JOHN 10

John 10:27
[27] My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me:

What a beautiful piece of scripture John 10 is. It describes Jesus as the Good Shepherd. One point I would like to make is that Jesus calling us sheep is not a term of endearment. Sheep are stupid, sheep can’t possibly take care of themselves. If a sheep is to survive any length of time it must have a Good Shepherd, and we have the best “Good” Shepherd. That word Good means beautiful, handsome, excellent, eminent, choice, praiseworthy, noble, honorable, comforting, precious….and the list actually keeps going. Just a couple of things I noticed about our Good Shepherd from this verse.

#1 He says “My sheep” if you are a Christian we belong to Jesus. Jesus identifies with us, Jesus assumes responsibility for us. A Shepherd will make sure that his sheep are fed, taken care of, protected. Jesus not only said you are sheep, but you are “My Sheep.”

#2 “Hear my voice” the Shepherd speaks to us. The Shepherd wants to have a relationship with us. Isn’t it a wonderful thing when we sit down, and open the Word of God, or bow on our knees to pray that God wants to speak to us? Could we take just a moment to realize and reflect on how awesome that is? Are you listening for the voice of the Shepherd today?

#3 “I know them” this means that we are not just a number to Jesus, not just part of the flock. Jesus knows your name, He knows what’s on your heart today, He knows everything about you. Jesus knows you individually, intimately, you are not anonymously a part of the herd.

#4 “they follow me” not only do we belong to the Shepherd, not only does He speak to us, and not only does He know us, but He has plans for us. This verse says that we should follow Him. Jesus wants you and I to follow Him, and accomplish what He put us here to do.

What more could we ask of the Good Shepherd. Just wanted you to be encouraged today that the Good Shepherd is doing a great job, and we just need to trust and follow Him.

Frank Newsome

October 28, 2019

BIBLE READING JOHN 9

John 9:1-3
And as Jesus passed by, he saw a man which was blind from his birth.
And his disciples asked him, saying, Master, who did sin, this man, or his parents, that he was born blind?
Jesus answered, Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents: but that the works of God should be made manifest in him.

Jesus was leaving a gathering where He was almost stoned. As He and His disciples were walking they passed a blind man. Their question was, “why is he blind?” Did his parents sin badly, and that’s why he’s blind? Jesus answers and said it’s not because someone sinned, he’s blind, but that God may get the glory.
People say a loving God wouldn’t allow suffering. However, Jesus said God allows suffering so that God can get glory. How is that possible? Brother Joe often told a story of a child looking up at a cross stich as his mother was sowing. It made no sense. Strings were going all over. But it wasn’t till the child looked from the top he saw the beautiful pattern. Our suffering and deficiencies are all part of Gods’ pattern.

We may not all be blind, but we all have deficiencies. We all have struggles. Often we try to hide our problems so no one can see them. Paul said, “for my strength is made perfect in weakness.” Jesus wants to use our weakness so that He gets glory. My challenge for you today is simple. Will you turn over your weaknesses, shortcomings or trials to Christ, and allow Him to get glory?

Jacob Jarriel

October 25, 2019

BIBLE READING JOHN 8

John 8:3-6
And the scribes and Pharisees brought unto him a woman taken in adultery; and when they had set her in the midst,
They say unto him, Master, this woman was taken in adultery, in the very act.
Now Moses in the law commanded us, that such should be stoned: but what sayest thou?
This they said, tempting him, that they might have to accuse him. But Jesus stooped down, and with his finger wrote on the ground, as though he heard them not.

This woman was caught in the act of adultery. There was no question of her guilt. The penalty for her sin was death. I assume in her mind she thought “this is the end.” She was being brought to her execution. However, her accusers messed up. They brought her to Jesus.

There is no one as compassionate and forgiving as Jesus. He knew she was guilty. Yet he didn’t condemn her. The accusers didn’t realize the man to whom they brought her was the only one able to forgive her sin. Jesus made the statement “He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her.” When confronted with their own sin, they couldn’t justly condemn another.

Today we are guilty of sins worthy of death. One little lie is enough to send us to an eternity in Hell. We also have an accuser in Satan who brings up our sin. But, Just like the woman who was forgiven, when we trusted Christ for salvation our sins were forgiven and forgotten. When the accuser brings up our sin before God, God says “I Don’t have a record of that.” What a blessed promise that God doesn’t remember our sin. He removes our death sentence and gives us new life, just like he did for the woman.

It would be a shame if that woman went back to the lifestyle she had just been forgiven from. I highly doubt she did. It would also be a shame for us as believers to engage in the same lifestyle we did before we were saved. Today can we live in a way that reflects thankfulness for what Christ has done for us?

Jacob Jarriel

October 24, 2019

BIBLE READING JOHN 7

John 7:16-18 (KJV)
16 Jesus answered them, and said, My doctrine is not mine, but his that sent me.
17 If any man will do his will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God, or whether I speak of myself.
18 He that speaketh of himself seeketh his own glory: but he that seeketh his glory that sent him, the same is true, and no unrighteousness is in him.

This is a precarious moment in Jesus’s ministry. The Jews are seeking to kill him. Jesus sends his disciples to an important yearly feast without him, and then Jesus secretly attended. During the feast Jesus went into the temple to teach. By earthly standards this is a risky move with people out to kill him, it must have been important what he had to say.

He is speaking of knowing if someone is truly from God. He tells them the words he says are of God. To be fair everything He said is of God, because He is God. But I believe this passage is important for us.

How often in our daily lives do we speak of ourselves? It’s easy to be focused on our own world. Jesus said if we speak of our own selves we seek our own glory. We want people to think well of us. The problem is God didn’t call us for our own glory. He called us to lift Him up.

If we are to bring God glory he must be preeminent in our lives. He must be what we think about. If we are thinking of Him we will talk about Him. Luke 6:45b says “for of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaketh.” To be honest I fall short of this standard. We should be singularly focused daily to be meditating on God words so our words can bring Him glory.

Jacob Jarriel