Saturday, September 24, 2016

There Is Not a Man On Earth

There Is Not a Man On Earth

It is an unfortunate reality that people turn to people instead of turning to God. And it’s not just the lost; Christians often place their trust in people rather than our Heavenly Father. Sometimes people trust in themselves. Sometimes people trust in the person viewed as having the authority, power or knowledge to make things happen. But whether it’s answers, perceived needs or healing, there is not a man on earth who can take the place of God as our source of truth, our provider and our healer.

When Nebuchadnezzar wanted to understand his dream, he commanded his magicians, astrologers and wise men not only to interpret the dream, but also to tell him what the dream was. This is probably one of the very few times that what they told the king was actually true.
  • Daniel 2:10 The Chaldeans answered the king, and said, “There is not a man on earth who can tell the king’s matter; therefore no king, lord, or ruler has ever asked such things of any magician, astrologer, or Chaldean.
    • Then Daniel told the king who could give him answers; the one and only God in Heaven!
      • Daniel 2:27-28 Daniel answered in the presence of the king, and said, “The secret which the king has demanded, the wise men, the astrologers, the magicians, and the soothsayers cannot declare to the king. 28 But there is a God in heaven who reveals secrets, and He has made known to King Nebuchadnezzar what will be in the latter days. Your dream, and the visions of your head upon your bed, were these:

When Lot’s daughters saw that there was not a man available to meet their perceived immediate need to have children, they trusted in themselves. They got their father drunk and became pregnant by him. The depravity of the human race shows through when we trust in ourselves.
  • Genesis 19:30-31 Then Lot went up out of Zoar and dwelt in the mountains, and his two daughters were with him; for he was afraid to dwell in Zoar. And he and his two daughters dwelt in a cave. 31 Now the firstborn said to the younger, “Our father is old, and there is no man on the earth to come in to us as is the custom of all the earth
    • In a similar situation, Sarah (who couldn't have children) desperately wanted a child.  Then God promised  that she would have a child with her husband Abraham.  Years later when she was 75, Sarah became impatient and offered her maidservant Hagar to her husband as a concubine. But then, when Abraham was 100 and Sarah was 90, God was faithful to His promise and Sarah did have a child with Abraham. Only God can fulfill His promises; and He does so according to His timetable.
      • Genesis 21:1-2 And the Lord visited Sarah as He had said, and the Lord did for Sarah as He had spoken. 2 For Sarah conceived and bore Abraham a son in his old age, at the set time of which God had spoken to him.

And when Paul, by God’s power healed a man who had been crippled from birth, some of the people in Lystra thought that he and Barnabas were gods and tried to make animal sacrifices to them. These people understood it would take a god to do this miracle; but they didn’t know about the one true God.
  • Acts 14:9-11 This man heard Paul speaking. Paul, observing him intently and seeing that he had faith to be healed, 10 said with a loud voice, “Stand up straight on your feet!” And he leaped and walked. 11 Now when the people saw what Paul had done, they raised their voices, saying in the Lycaonian language, “The gods have come down to us in the likeness of men!”
    • But Paul gave God credit for this miraculous healing. He had been proclaiming to them the truth about God. He also went on to tell them that the one true God is the creator of all things.
      • Acts 14:15 and saying, “Men, why are you doing these things? We also are men with the same nature as you, and preach to you that you should turn from these useless things to the living God, who made the heaven, the earth, the sea, and all things that are in them,

God has warned us about trusting in anything other than Him.
  • Jeremiah 17:5-6 Thus says the Lord: “Cursed is the man who trusts in man And makes flesh his strength, Whose heart departs from the Lord. 6 For he shall be like a shrub in the desert, And shall not see when good comes, But shall inhabit the parched places in the wilderness, In a salt land which is not inhabited.
  • Isaiah 31:1 Woe to those who go down to Egypt for help, And rely on horses, Who trust in chariots because they are many, And in horsemen because they are very strong, But who do not look to the Holy One of Israel, Nor seek the Lord!

He has also promised blessings to those who trust in Him.
  • Jeremiah 17:7-8 “Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord, And whose hope is the Lord. 8 For he shall be like a tree planted by the waters, Which spreads out its roots by the river, And will not fear when heat comes; But its leaf will be green, And will not be anxious in the year of drought, Nor will cease from yielding fruit.
  • Psalm 34:8 Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good; Blessed is the man who trusts in Him!

And when it comes to the ultimate need of all humanity, the forgiveness of our sins, appeasement of God’s wrath and eternal life in Heaven; Jesus, God in the flesh, has made clear that God is the only one who can meet this need.
  • John 6:44 No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him; and I will raise him up at the last day.
  • John 14:6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.
  • John 17:3 And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.

There is not a man on earth who can meet your needs. Trust in the Lord!
  • Psalm 20:7 Some trust in chariots, and some in horses; But we will remember the name of the Lord our God.


Father, may we trust in You alone. You know all things, created all things, gave us life, provide for us, save us. Please Lord, humble us. Help us all to see that you are our only hope. May the truth of Your Word burn in our hearts and draw us close to You; whatever our needs may be. I pray to You in the name of Your Son Jesus Christ. Amen.

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Why Am I Here

Why Am I Here

‘Why am I Here?’, as in,’ Why am I alive, in this world, right now?’ You may not care. You may have given up on finding an answer. Or you may have found an answer you feel like you can live with. But the truth is, whoever you are, whatever you believe, wherever you live, there is just one correct answer to this very important question.

Whom Do You Serve?

Like it or not, you are serving one of two masters.
  • Romans 6:16 Do you not know that to whom you present yourselves slaves to obey, you are that one’s slaves whom you obey, whether of sin leading to death, or of obedience leading to righteousness?
    • You are either serving Father God.
      • John 1:12 But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name:
    • Or you are serving your father, Satan.
      • John 8:44 You are of your father the devil, and the desires of your father you want to do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it.
    • If you don’t believe in God or Satan; serving yourself equals serving Satan.
      • Matthew 12:30 He who is not with Me is against Me, and he who does not gather with Me scatters abroad.

God’s Holy Word is God’s Perfect Truth

Jesus is the way to God’s truth.
  • John 8:31-32 Then Jesus said to those Jews who believed Him, “If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. 32 And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”
God’s truth is the path to wisdom.
  • Psalm 19:7 The law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul; The testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple;

God Loves Us All

One of the central truths of God’s Word is that He loves all people and desires them to become His children.
  • 2 Peter 3:9 The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.
Believing on Jesus and surrendering to Him establishes a right relationship with Father God.
  • John 1:12 But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name:

God’s Rules Over Eternity

God has an eternal plan.
  • Isaiah 46:9-10 Remember the former things of old, For I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is none like Me, 10 Declaring the end from the beginning, And from ancient times things that are not yet done, Saying, ‘My counsel shall stand, And I will do all My pleasure,’
He put you where He did when He did as part of that plan.
  • Acts 17:26-27 And He has made from one blood every nation of men to dwell on all the face of the earth, and has determined their preappointed times and the boundaries of their dwellings, 27 so that they should seek the Lord, in the hope that they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us;

There Is an Appointed Time

Just as the Lord prearranged the deliverance of Israel from Egypt after the first Passover.
  • Exodus 12:29 And it came to pass at midnight that the Lord struck all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, from the firstborn of Pharaoh who sat on his throne to the firstborn of the captive who was in the dungeon, and all the firstborn of livestock.
He fixed in time the moment that Christ would make a way for all humanity to be delivered from the eternal penalty of sin.
  • John 17:1 Jesus spoke these words, lifted up His eyes to heaven, and said: “Father, the hour has come. Glorify Your Son, that Your Son also may glorify You,

It Is All About a Relationship with the One True God

Just as Jehovah entered into a covenant relationship with the Nation of Israel after He freed them from slavery to Pharaoh.
  • Exodus 19:4-6 ‘You have seen what I did to the Egyptians, and how I bore you on eagles’ wings and brought you to Myself. 5 Now therefore, if you will indeed obey My voice and keep My covenant, then you shall be a special treasure to Me above all people; for all the earth is Mine. 6 And you shall be to Me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.’ These are the words which you shall speak to the children of Israel.”
Jesus is the way to the new and eternal covenant relationship with God because He shed His blood to free us from slavery to sin.
  • John 17:2-3 as You have given Him authority over all flesh, that He should give eternal life to as many as You have given Him. 3 And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.

Chapter 17 in the Gospel of John is a turning point. With this High Priestly Prayer for Himself, for His Disciples, for all who already believed in Him, and for all who would/will ever believe in Him, Jesus transitions from His ministry of serving, teaching and healing to His ministry of intercession and sacrifice.

And in this prayer, as we hear our Lord and Savior communing with Father God, Jesus declared to His Father what He had done with His time on earth.
  • John 17:4 I have glorified You on the earth. I have finished the work which You have given Me to do.

And there is it; the answer to the question, ‘Why am I here?’ Jesus, God in the flesh, our perfect example, provided for all people, for all time, a concise declaration of why we are here.

All People Are Here to Glorify God
  • 1 Corinthians 10:31 Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.
  • Philippians 1:11 And this I pray, that your love may abound still more and more in knowledge and all discernment, 10 that you may approve the things that are excellent, that you may be sincere and without offense till the day of Christ, 11 being filled with the fruits of righteousness which are by Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.

All People Are Here to Finish the Work He Has Given Us
  • Ephesians 2:10 For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.
  • 1 Peter 4:11 If anyone speaks, let him speak as the oracles of God. If anyone ministers, let him do it as with the ability which God supplies, that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom belong the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen.

Fulfilling Our Purpose Requires Surrendering to Our Heavenly Father
  • Romans 12:1-2 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. 2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.
    • We cannot accomplish this without:
      • God’s Mercy
      • Losing our life to save it
      • Worshiping Him with our lives
        • Being set apart for His use
        • Living in a way that pleases Him
      • Living differently than the world around us
      • Having our thinking renovated by the truth of God’s Word and the presence of His Holy Spirit
      • Living, experiencing and validating His good, pleasing and perfect plans and desires

The path we walk as followers of Jesus is not always easy.

It is the only path for us to be on.

This path leads us home!


Father, please give me the faith, strength, courage, perseverance and wisdom to glorify You and complete the work You have given me to do.  Draw all people to Yourself.  Thank You for Your Word, Your Holy Spirit and for other followers of Jesus.  Thank You for saving me.  Please forgive me where I fall short of how You have called me to live and what You have called me to do.  I praise You and I pray to You in the name above every name, Jesus Christ.  Amen.

Monday, September 5, 2016

Labor Day

Labor Day

Labor Day is celebrated in the United States of America to acknowledge and acclaim the work of its citizens; the hard and enduring work of men and woman to establish, advance, strengthen and protect our country. The virtue and value of work is demonstrated and proclaimed by God in His Word; work should be a healthy and rewarding part of life for those who love and follow Him.

Here are some thoughts about work from a Biblical perspective. Our work should reflect who He is and who we are in Him.

God Works
  • Genesis 2:2 And on the seventh day God ended His work which He had done, and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done.
  • Psalm 111:7-8 The works of His hands are verity and justice; All His precepts are sure. 8 They stand fast forever and ever, And are done in truth and uprightness.
    • God created and sustains everything. His works are true, just and good.

God Gave Us Work
  • Genesis 2:15 Then the Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to tend and keep it.
    • The Lord created a wonderful home for us and has entrusted us with its upkeep.

God Declares the Value of Working
  • Proverbs 28:19 He who tills his land will have plenty of bread, But he who follows frivolity will have poverty enough!
  • Ephesians 4:28 Let him who stole steal no longer, but rather let him labor, working with his hands what is good, that he may have something to give him who has need.
    • Work is both necessary and beneficial.

Work in Obedience to God's Will

    Accomplishes His Purposes
  • Genesis 6:14 Make yourself an ark of gopherwood; make rooms in the ark, and cover it inside and outside with pitch.
    • God used Noah, an obedient servant, to save the human race from a worldwide flood.
  • Matthew 28:19-20 Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Amen.
    • God uses followers of Jesus to share the good news about salvation in Christ to save the lost from an eternity in hell.
    Show His Love to Those in Need
  • Matthew 25:34-36 Then the King will say to those on His right hand, ‘Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: 35 for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; 36 I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.’
    • Godly love can be seen in acts of kindness and compassion.
    Brings Him Glory
  • Matthew 5:16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.
    • Our work should be done in such a way that it draws attention to our Lord, not to us.

Christians are to Motivate Each Other in Love and Good Works
  • Hebrews 10:24 And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works,
    • Brothers and sisters in Christ should encourage each other to use the gifts God has given us to do the work God has prepared for us.

We Can’t Work to Earn Forgiveness of Our Sins
  • Ephesians 2:8-9 For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, 9 not of works, lest anyone should boast.
  • Romans 4:5 But to him who does not work but believes on Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is accounted for righteousness,
    • Forgiveness of sin through the blood of Jesus Christ is a gift from God to those who have faith in Him. Salvation in Christ is not earned, warranted or deserved.

We Were Saved from Sin to Do Good Works
  • Ephesians 2:10 For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.
    • God saved us from our sins through Jesus so He can use us as part of accomplishing His plans.

Our Work for God is a
Labor of Love


Dear Lord, thank You for the blessing of work and for equipping us to fulfill your calling to good works. May our work show our love for You and our love for others. Help us to see beyond obligation and guilt as motivations to do good works. Prepare our hearts and minds for the challenges of the work You have called us to do. Take away our pride and self-sufficiency and replace them with humility and complete dependence upon You.  Thank You for allowing us to be a part of what You are doing. In Christ’s name I pray. Amen.