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  #201  
Old 04-23-2009, 04:14 AM
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Default Apr. 23

April 23, 2009

Agreeing With God

READ: Matthew 15:1-9

These people draw near to Me with their mouth, and honor Me with their lips, but their heart is far from Me. —Matthew 15:8

The caller to the radio program mentioned religion, so the radio talk show host began to rant about hypocrites. “I can’t stand religious hypocrites,” he said. “They talk about religion, but they’re no better than I am. That’s why I don’t like all this religious stuff.”

This man didn’t realize it, but he was agreeing with God. God has made it clear that He can’t stand hypocrisy either. It’s ironic, though, that something God opposes is used by some people as an excuse not to seek Him.

Jesus said this about hypocrisy: “These people draw near to Me with their mouth, and honor Me with their lips, but their heart is far from Me. And in vain they worship Me, teaching as doctrines the commandments of men” (Matt. 15:8-9).

Notice what Jesus said to perhaps the biggest hypocrites of His day, the Pharisees. In Matthew 23, He called them hypocrites—not once, not twice, but seven times! They were religious people who were putting on a big show, but God knew their hearts. He knew they were far from Him.

Non-Christians who point out hypocrisy in us when they see it are right in doing so. They are agreeing with God, who also despises it. Our task is to make sure our lives honor the One who deserves our total dedication. — Dave Branon

Hypocrisy is a common sin
That grieves the Lord above;
He longs for those who’ll worship Him
In faith and truth and love. —Bosch


The devil is content to let us profess Christianity as long as we do not practice it.
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  #202  
Old 04-23-2009, 01:44 PM
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Originally Posted by HardCory View Post
The devil is content to let us profess Christianity as long as we do not practice it.
How true..........
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Do not be deceived, my beloved brothers. Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights
With God's help...Mens sana in corpore sano
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  #203  
Old 04-24-2009, 01:20 AM
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How true..........

This really struck me this morning how true that statement is. I believe because that is true Christianity is often misrepresented to non believers. Its easy to announce that you're a follower of Christ, but not easy to display it in your daily life with your actions.
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  #204  
Old 04-24-2009, 04:23 AM
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Default Apr. 24

April 24, 2009

The Father’s Faithfulness

READ: Psalm 107:1-16

Through the Lord’s mercies we are not consumed, because His compassions fail not. . . . Great is Your faithfulness. —Lamentations 3:22-23

Hudson Taylor, the humble servant of God to China, demonstrated extraordinary trust in God’s faithfulness. In his journal he wrote:

“Our heavenly Father is a very experienced One. He knows very well that His children wake up with a good appetite every morning. . . . He sustained 3 million Israelites in the wilderness for 40 years. We do not expect He will send 3 million missionaries to China; but if He did, He would have ample means to sustain them all. . . . Depend on it, God’s work done in God’s way will never lack God’s supply.”

We may be faint and weary, but our heavenly Father is all-powerful. Our feelings may fluctuate, but He is unchangeable. Even creation itself is a record of His steadfastness. That’s why we can sing these words from a hymn by Thomas Chisholm: “Summer and winter, and springtime and harvest, sun, moon, and stars in their courses above join with all nature in manifold witness to Thy great faithfulness, mercy, and love.”

What an encouragement to live for Him! Our strength for the present and hope for the future are not based on the stability of our own perseverance but on the fidelity of God. No matter what our need, we can count on the Father’s faithfulness. — Paul Van Gorder

Great is Thy faithfulness! Great is Thy faithfulness!
Morning by morning new mercies I see;
All I have needed Thy hand hath provided—
Great is Thy faithfulness, Lord, unto me! —Chisholm
© Renewal 1951 Hope Publishing.


He who abandons himself to God will never be abandoned by God.
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  #205  
Old 04-25-2009, 04:30 AM
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Default Apr. 25

April 25, 2009

Against The Wall

READ: Romans 8:31-39

Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? —Romans 8:35

On April 25, 1915, soldiers of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps landed on the Gallipoli peninsula expecting a quick victory. But fierce resistance by the Turkish defenders resulted in an 8-month stalemate during which thousands on both sides were wounded or killed.

Many of the ANZAC troops who were evacuated to Egypt visited the YMCA camp outside Cairo where chaplain Oswald Chambers offered hospitality and hope to these men so broken and disillusioned by war. With great insight and compassion, Chambers told them, “No man is the same after an agony; he is either better or worse, and the agony of a man’s experience is nearly always the first thing that opens his mind to understand the need of redemption worked out by Jesus Christ. At the back of the wall of the world stands God with His arms outstretched, and every man driven there is driven into the arms of God. The cross of Jesus is the supreme evidence of the love of God.”

Paul asked: “Who shall separate us from the love of Christ?” (Rom. 8:35). His confident answer was that nothing can remove us from God’s love in Christ (vv.38-39).

When we’re up against the wall, God is there with open arms. — David C. McCasland

God knows each winding way I take
And every sorrow, pain, and ache;
His children He will not forsake—
He knows and loves His own. —Bosch


God’s love still stands when all else has fallen.
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  #206  
Old 04-26-2009, 02:54 AM
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Default Apr. 26

April 26, 2009

Lip Service

READ: Mark 7:5-15

This people honors Me with their lips, but their heart is far from Me. —Mark 7:6

Smile,” said Jay as we drove to church. “You look so unhappy.” I wasn’t; I was just thinking, and I can’t do two things at once. But to make him happy, I smiled. “Not like that,” he said. “I mean a real smile.”

His comment got me thinking even more intently. Is it reasonable to expect a real smile from someone who’s being issued a command? A real smile comes from inside; it’s an expression of the heart, not of the face.

We settle for phony smiles in photographs. We’re happy when everyone cooperates at the photographer’s studio and we get at least one picture with everyone smiling. After all, we’re creating an icon of happiness, so it doesn’t have to be genuine.

But phoniness before God is unacceptable. Whether we’re happy or sad or mad, honesty is essential. God doesn’t want false expressions of worship any more than He wants false statements about people or circumstances (Mark 7:6).

Changing our facial expression is easier than changing our attitude, but true worship requires that all of our heart, soul, mind, and strength agree that God is worthy of praise. Even when our circumstances are sad, we can be grateful for God’s mercy and compassion, which are worth more than the “lip service” of a phony smile. — Julie Ackerman Link

What a God we have to worship!
What a Son we have to praise!
What a future lies before us—
Everlasting, love-filled days! —Maynard


A song in the heart puts a smile on the face.
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  #207  
Old 04-27-2009, 02:27 AM
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Default Apr. 27

April 27, 2009

First Things First

READ: Matthew 6:25-34

Seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness. —Matthew 6:33

A seminar leader wanted to make an important point, so he took a wide-mouth jar and filled it with rocks. “Is the jar full?” he asked. “Yes,” came a reply. “Oh, really?” he said. Then he poured smaller pebbles into the jar to fill the spaces between the rocks. “Is it full now?” “Yes,” said someone else. “Oh, really?” He then filled the remaining spaces between the rocks and stones with sand. “Is it full now?” he asked. “Probably not,” said another, to the amusement of the audience. Then he took a pitcher of water and poured it into the jar.

“What’s the lesson we learn from this?” he asked. An eager participant spoke up, “No matter how full the jar is, there’s always room for more.” “Not quite,” said the leader. “The lesson is: to get everything in the jar, you must always put the big things in first.”

Jesus proclaimed a similar principle in the Sermon on the Mount. He knew that we waste our time worrying about the little things that seem so urgent but crowd out the big things of eternal value. “Your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things,” Jesus reminded His hearers. “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you” (Matt. 6:32-33).

What are you putting first in your life? — Dennis J. De Haan

Make It Practical
• Always pray before planning.
• Always love people more than things.
• Do all things to please God.


Those who lay up treasures in heaven are the richest people on earth.
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  #208  
Old 04-27-2009, 03:05 PM
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this is a good one for you, given your recent situation.
I'm still prayin' for you.
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James 1:16-17 ESV
Do not be deceived, my beloved brothers. Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights
With God's help...Mens sana in corpore sano
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  #209  
Old 04-27-2009, 11:19 PM
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this is a good one for you, given your recent situation.
I'm still prayin' for you.

Yeah, this one got me thinking this morning, especially w/ it being the last 2 weeks of this semester and finals coming up. One thing at a time though, thanks for your prayers, means a lot.
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  #210  
Old 04-28-2009, 03:25 AM
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Default Apr. 28

April 28, 2009

Slapton Sands

READ: 1 Peter 5:1-11

Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. —1 Peter 5:8

On the southern shores of England is Slapton Sands. This beautiful beach area carries a tragic memory from its past.

On April 28, 1944, during World War II, Allied soldiers were engaged in Operation Tiger, a training exercise in amphibious beach landings in preparation for the D-Day invasion of Normandy. Suddenly, enemy gunboats appeared and killed over 700 American servicemen in a surprise attack. Today, a monument stands on Slapton Sands to commemorate the sacrifice of those young men who died while training for battle but were never able to enter the conflict.

This tragedy is a metaphor that warns the believer in Christ. We too are involved in combat with an enemy who is powerful and deceptive. That is why the apostle Peter warned: “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour” (1 Peter 5:8).

Like the soldiers on Slapton Sands, we face an enemy who desires our undoing. In the service of our King, we must be on the alert. The call to be effective in battle (2 Tim. 2:3-4) challenges us to be ready for the surprise attacks of our spiritual enemy—so that we can endure to serve another day. — Bill Crowder

The devil’s tactic is surprise
To stop you in your tracks,
So keep on guard and trust God’s Word;
Resist his strong attacks. —Branon


Satan’s ploys are no match for the Savior’s power.
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-Colossians 3:23

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