Give “Him” His Due – Worship God

Luke 4:6 And the devil said to Him, “All this authority I will give You, and their glory; for this has been delivered to me, and I give it to whomever I wish. 7 “Therefore, if You will worship before me, all will be Yours.”
Luke 4:8 And Jesus answered and said to him, “Get behind Me, Satan! For it is written, ‘You shall worship the LORD your God, and Him only you shall serve.
On May 27, 2009, the world’s largest worship venue opened in Arlington, TX. With close to 30,000 parking spaces, the ability to hold 110,000 people, a state-of-the-art sound system, and a gigantic center-hung, high-definition television screen that measures 160 X 72 feet, it is the perfect location to gather, sing, shout, cry, clap, and feel the energy that occurs when that many souls come together with the same hope in mind.
What church does this massive edifice belong to? It must be the Baptist or charismatics, right? Who else has that kind of coin?  No, the owner of this 1.33 billion monster in Arlington is none other than Jerry Jones, owner of the Dallas Cowboys. And all year long, whether for a concert, motocross event, tractor pull, or football game, men and women flood into the stadium ready to support and cheer on their favorite team, band, or player. They’ve come for one reason and one reason alone. They have come to …. rejoice.
Rejoice is a simple yet serious word, meaning to celebrate, cheer, exult, or delight in. One synonym for rejoice is worship, and we were each created by God to do so, hardwired by our Creator for it. And thus, even those men and women who don’t enjoy worshiping their Maker can sometimes be seen with their bodies painted in team colors, becoming emotionally affected for hours, sometimes days, bu how the game went on a particular Saturday, or Sunday, or Monday night, or Thursday night. They’re ready for worship any day of the week—morning, noon, of evening. But their hearts are yielded to lesser things.
Because we humans are worshipers, we are “Rejoicers”. It’s what we do. Every single person, whether religious or irreligious, actively worships. They have identified something bigger than themselves that they believe is worthy of their money, time, and the meditations of their hearts. In many ways, they have offered themselves as sacrifices to that “something,” whatever it is. It comes naturally to them. Easily. Enjoyably.
But in our sinfulness, this tendency to worship things other than God is an exercise in disappointment. It offers us nothing but temporary satisfaction while simultaneously bringing God’s judgment upon us (Eccl. 11:9). Since we are worshipers by God’s design, the problem is not that we rejoice but rather that we rejoice wrongly. (taken from Creature of The Word–The Jesus-Centered Church)
Why waste your life praising that which is not worthy of your praise. If you must worship something, and you must worship something, then worship Him Who’s worth is immeasurable, Who’s beauty is immutable, Who’s glory is indescribable! (PEW)
Psalm 37:4 Delight yourself also in the LORD, And He shall give you the desires of your heart.
Psalm 29:2 Give unto the LORD the glory due to His name; Worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness.

He was cru·ci·fy·ed for our sins,

cru·ci·fy ˈkro͞osəˌfī/ verb past tense: crucified; past participle: crucified 1. – to put (someone) to death by nailing or binding them to a cross, especially as an ancient punishment. For as…

Source: He was cru·ci·fy·ed for our sins,

What Friends are For

I was encouraged to re-post this blog after hearing Pastor Rob challenge us last Sunday to live as a community of counselors; just as it is written, we are “joined and knit together by what every joint supplies, according to the effective working by which every part does its share, causes growth of the body for the edifying of itself in love.” (Ephesians 4:16)

A View From PEW

criticism png

When my wife and I finished reading the book of Job for our daily devotions one very convicting take away that the Lord brought to our attention was how easily criticism flows out of our mouths to either condemn and pass judgment on others.

When Job’s friends observed Job’s life collapsing right before their eyes they wrongly judged him by thinking that all this calamity was happening to Job because he was guilty of something.

  • Eliphaz – Job 4:7 ¶ “Remember now, who ever perished being innocent? Or where were the upright ever cut off? 8 Even as I have seen, Those who plow iniquity And sow trouble reap the same.
  • Bildad – Job 8:3 Does God subvert judgment? Or does the Almighty pervert justice? 4 If your sons have sinned against Him, He has cast them away for their transgression. 5 If you would earnestly seek God And make your supplication to the…

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How to kill a giant

I needed to re-read this today. Thanks Lord for the reminder of your empowering grace.

A View From PEW

david-versus-goliath

1 Samuel 17:33, 37 And Saul said to David, “You are not able to go against this Philistine {Goliath} to fight with him; for you are a youth, and he a man of war from his youth.” …… David said, “The LORD, who delivered me from the paw of the lion and from the paw of the bear, He will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine.”

Humanly speaking, Saul spoke the truth when he said to David, “You are not able to go against this Philistine.”  Take a quick look at David’s resume below and see if you don’t agree with Sauls words

  • David was merely a youth (a lad) when Saul shared his assessment of David’s chance of success against Goliath.
  • David was not even the choicest of his own fathers children.
  • David was a shepherd to this point of his career, and unskilled in war.

Goliath…

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A Most Precious Commodity: Time

time PNG“Time is the only element in the world that is irretrievable when it is lost.  Lose money and you can make more.  Lose a friend and your can patch up the relationship.  Lose a job and you can find another.   But lost time and it is gone forever.”  (Peter Berbman)

There are many references in the Bible to time.

  • Ec 3:1 ¶ To everything [there is] a season, A time for every purpose under heaven:
  • Ec 3:2 A time to be born, And a time to die; A time to plant, And a time to pluck [what is] planted;
  • Ec 3:3 A time to kill, And a time to heal; A time to break down, And a time to build up;
  • Ec 3:4 A time to weep, And a time to laugh; A time to mourn, And a time to dance;
  • Ec 3:5 A time to cast away stones, And a time to gather stones; A time to embrace, And a time to refrain from embracing;
  • Ec 3:6 A time to gain, And a time to lose; A time to keep, And a time to throw away;
  • Ec 3:7 A time to tear, And a time to sew; A time to keep silence, And a time to speak;
  • Ec 3:8 A time to love, And a time to hate; A time of war, And a time of peace.
  • Ec 3:11 ¶ He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also He has put eternity in their hearts, except that no one can find out the work that God does from beginning to end.
  • Ec 3:17 I said in my heart, “God shall judge the righteous and the wicked, For [there is] a time there for every purpose and for every work.”
  • Ec 7:17 Do not be overly wicked, Nor be foolish: Why should you die before your time?
  • Ec 8:5 He who keeps his command will experience nothing harmful; And a wise man’s heart discerns both time and judgment,
  • Ps 90:1 ¶ <<A Prayer of Moses the man of God.>> Lord, You have been our dwelling place in all generations. 2 Before the mountains were brought forth, Or ever You had formed the earth and the world, Even from everlasting to everlasting, You are God.  3 You turn man to destruction, And say, “Return, O children of men.”  4 For a thousand years in Your sight Are like yesterday when it is past, And like a watch in the night.  ……   9 For all our days have passed away in Your wrath; We finish our years like a sigh.  10 The days of our lives are seventy years; And if by reason of strength they are eighty years, Yet their boast is only labor and sorrow; For it is soon cut off, and we fly away.  11 Who knows the power of Your anger? For as the fear of You, so is Your wrath.  12 ¶ So teach us to number our days, That we may gain a heart of wisdom.
  • Isaiah 40:6 The voice said, “Cry out!” And he said, “What shall I cry?” “All flesh is grass, And all its loveliness is like the flower of the field. 7 The grass withers, the flower fades, Because the breath of the LORD blows upon it; Surely the people are grass.  8 The grass withers, the flower fades, But the word of our God stands forever.”

As a fallen creature I struggle with time management.  Not that I do not manage time to accomplish what “I” want to do, but managing it with eternity in view.  The world, my flesh, and the Devil all beckon me to exchange the infinite value of time that God has deposited into my life account for finite “stuff” that in the light of eternity are rubbish. (Phil. 3:8)

My prayer today is that I will live Ephesians 5:15-17, which says,

  • “See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise, redeeming the time, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is.” (Ephesians 5:15-17)

This is the beginning of a new day.

I have been given this day

to use as I WILL.

I can waste it…

or use it for good,

But what I do today is important,

Because I am exchanging

a day of my life for it!

When tomorrow comes,

this day will be gone forever,

Leaving in its place

something that I have traded for it.

I want it to be gain,

and not loss;

Good and not evil;

success and not failure;

In order that I shall not regret

the price I have paid for it.

I will try just for today,

for you never fail until you stop trying.

As if it were your last

He was cru·ci·fy·ed for our sins,

Thinking of these verses humbles me:
John 1:16 And of His fullness we have all received, and grace for grace.
Ephesians 1:3 ¶ Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, 4 just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love, 5 having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, 6 to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He has made us accepted in the Beloved. 7 In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace

A View From PEW

scourging_lg

cru·ci·fy

ˈkro͞osəˌfī/

verb

past tense: crucified; past participle: crucified

  1. 1. – to put (someone) to death by nailing or binding them to a cross, especially as an ancient punishment.

For as long as I can remember I have always loved the impact that taking the Lord’s Supper has had on me. As a boy, and a young believer, I would hold the small cup of wine in my hands before drinking it and solemnly think of the sacrifice that Jesus laid before the Father as an atonement for my sins.

Author Michael Card (A Violent Grace) calls us to reflect on the tremendous display of God’s redeeming love toward us by experiencing the agony of Christ suffering through the power of our imagination.  Card writes,

Josephus (First Century Jewish historian)revealed the ferocity of Roman flogging when, commenting on the fate of a prisoner of the Jewish War, said…

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The Battle is the Lord

assyriancavalvry

When the king Sennacherib of Assyria led his army against Judah he brought with him an impressive resume of destruction:

2 Chronicles 32:13 ‘Do you not know what I and my fathers have done to all the peoples of other lands? Were the gods of the nations of those lands in any way able to deliver their lands out of my hand? 4 ‘Who was there among all the gods of those nations that my fathers utterly destroyed that could deliver his people from my hand, that your God should be able to deliver you from my hand?”

Humanly speaking, Hezekiah and his people were trapped in a hopeless situation. Nevertheless, I thank God that Hezekiah knew that his help came from the Lord, and by faith he encouraged his people to listen to God and not to men.

2 Chronicles 32:7 “Be strong and courageous; do not be afraid nor dismayed before the king of Assyria, nor before all the multitude that is with him; for there are more with us than with him. 8 “With him is an arm of flesh; but with us is the LORD our God, to help us and to fight our battles.” And the people were strengthened by the words of Hezekiah king of Judah.

If you read this amazing chapter of the Bible you will discover that there were some keys to Hezekiah’s overcoming faith; 1) he sought the Lord with his whole heart, 2) he trusted in God’s word, and 3) he knew that there was power in prayer. At the end of the day, God honored Hezekiah’s faith and He sent His angel to destroy the Assyrian army; God sent this evil king home in disgrace where his own family turned against him.

2 Chronicles 32:21 Then the LORD sent an angel who cut down every mighty man of valor, leader, and captain in the camp of the king of Assyria. So he returned shamefaced to his own land. And when he had gone into the temple of his god, some of his own offspring struck him down with the sword there.  

Beloved, whatever you are facing today (or every day), “Be strong and courageous”, knowing that God is in control. Trust Him completely, and allow Him to fight your battles, “for the battle is the Lord’s.”