God Will Give The Victory

Tuesday, 2019-04-30

Bible Reference: 2 Chronicles 20:15–17
Translation: Good News Translation (GNT)

Bible Text:  Jahaziel said, “Your Majesty and all you people of Judah and Jerusalem, the LORD says that you must not be discouraged or be afraid to face this large army. The battle depends on God, not on you. Attack them tomorrow as they come up the pass at Ziz. You will meet them at the end of the valley that leads to the wild country near Jeruel. You will not have to fight this battle. Just take up your positions and wait; you will see the LORD give you victory. People of Judah and Jerusalem, do not hesitate or be afraid. Go out to battle, and the LORD will be with you!”

OBSERVATION: King Jehoshaphat faced an overwhelming issue – he was about to face a huge army. Often our issues seem unreal to us also, because we see, what appears to be, an overwhelming challenge ahead of us. But the reassuring thing for us, is that the same God who promised victory to the king, is the same God that we serve today! And I believe that He is just as concerned about our victory as He was about the king’s challenge! Meditate with me on this friends!

APPLICATION: King Jehoshaphat faced the reality of an approaching army that was superior to his and overwhelmingly outnumbered his army. He was accustomed to prayer, leadership by God, and the awesome power of God. But he didn’t take this for granted, he gathered his people in the temple courtyard and he personally led the prayer to God on behalf of his people. After bragging on the known accomplishments of God, in vs 7 and again in vs 12 the king acknowledged that “You are our God”, meaning that You are the proven One that we depend on; You are the One that is powerful enough to bring us victory! In response to this intense, yet humble time of prayer, God spoke through an unknown prophet in their midst, Jahaziel, who shared with the king and his people that they are not to be afraid or discouraged, the battle depends on God, not on them! Wow, what an awesome reality when we face our battles today. When we have placed the battle in God’s hands, we can rest peacefully knowing that the battle is then His, not ours! What an awesome God we serve fellow Christian! Take time to give Him praise, adoration and glory today! If you are facing a battle today, I encourage you to read this whole chapter (30 verses), and be encourage to surrender that battle over to God. Imagine the peace of knowing that He now has that issue that has been troubling you and that the battle is His, and no longer yours! Just do it friend! He is our God!

PRAYER: Lord God, You know the mountains that we need to cross, and I believe that You know the challenges that seem overwhelming to us. Please comfort the hearts of Your children tuned in to this devotional today, and give us the reassurance that we need to help us face today, and tomorrow, knowing that You are still God and that our ‘mountains’ are very crossable with You as our Guide and our Deliverer. Praise be to God for the assurance of whom we serve, and for Your awesome power to overcome. May we place our faith and trust in You at all times, for all things. AMEN!

The Unfortunate Results of Unbelief

Monday, 2019-04-29

Bible Reference:  Mark 6:2-6 
Translation: Living Bible (TLB)

Bible Text: …the people were astonished at his wisdom and his miracles because he was just a local man like themselves. “He’s no better than we are,” they said. “He’s just a carpenter, Mary’s boy, and a brother of James and Joseph, Judas and Simon. And his sisters live right here among us.” And they were offended! Then Jesus told them, “A prophet is honored everywhere except in his hometown and among his relatives and by his own family.” And because of their unbelief he couldn’t do any mighty miracles among them except to place his hands on a few sick people and heal them. And he could hardly accept the fact that they wouldn’t believe in him. Then he went out among the villages, teaching.

OBSERVATION: You may have heard it before, where an old saint may say that he, or she, will not go out to hear that person preach, because he’s just one of the locals who grew up with them. So to read our focal verses today and see that Jesus faced this same dilemma, really opens our minds to ponder why do we humans choose to take this stand. Jesus said that these choices lead to unbelief in the power of God, and can really prevent His work in our midst. Let’s open our hearts to God’s Word as we meditate some more on this.

APPLICATION: From personal experience, I can tell you that it is very natural for us to look at the faults in others and judge them accordingly, while overlooking the plank in our own eye – the shortcomings of our own life. I recall a group meeting of church workers, and one gentleman suggested that a Brother was falling short of his responsibilities. However, the pastor commented that the complainant may be out of order, because there was lots of ministry being done by the person behind the scenes, and unannounced to the rest of the workers. Friends, it is times like that when we are made to understand that keeping ourselves straight, and in alignment with the commands of Jesus, is a fulltime job, that leaves no time for us to judge another! Similarly, when a teacher or preacher is presented to us, our responsibility is to pray that God would use them as His messenger to speak His words that we need in our lives. Friends, that’s a miraculous work of God, when you consider the many temptations, trials and challenges that each of us face daily here on this old sinful earth. It is so easy for us to be distracted by the known, or assumed sin/faults of the person standing before us, rather than the miraculous working God who is using that earthen vessel to deliver His message to us. But how does that affect, or impact us? Notice in verse 5 that the Word of God says that because of unbelief, God is unwilling to release His work, and work miracles in our midst. So when we sin by tearing down the messenger, what blessings do you assume that we are blocking? Is it not time for God’s children to act as His children and to seek His face while He may be found. Listen closely to the message that He has entrusted to His messenger to deliver to us, so that His blessings and miracles may flow freely, and uninterrupted by our selfishness and sinfulness? Friends, let us make every effort to enhance the work of the Lord in our own life, and that of our churches, instead of being a stumbling block. May God be glorified, even if we might be humbled in the effort.

PRAYER: Precious Lord Jesus, I don’t know that a whole lot has changed from the time that You were provoked to leave the people of Nazareth and move on to other towns that were ready to listen to Your word, and receive Your blessings. We desperately need You dear Lord, please humble us to set aside our personal preferences and our warped ideals, so that our ears may be primed to listen to Your Word. May our lives be opened and ready to obey Your teachings. We need You and we need to be open to Your Word. Please help us to do just that today and every day, so that You might be glorified in our lives. AMEN!

Many Voices

Saturday, 2019-04-27

Bible Reference: Mark 5:36; 39-42
Translation: The Passion Translation (TPT)

Bible Text: 36 But Jesus refused to listen to what they were told[n and said to the Jewish official, “Don’t yield to fear. All you need to do is to keep on believing.”
39 Upon entering the home, Jesus said to them, “Why all this grief and weeping? Don’t you know the girl is not dead but merely asleep?” 40 Then everyone began to ridicule and make fun of him. But he threw them all outside. Then he took the child’s father and mother and his three disciples and went into the room where the girl was lying. 41 He tenderly clasped the child’s hand in his and said to her in Aramaic, “Talitha koum,” which means, “Little girl, wake up from the sleep of death.” 42 Instantly the twelve-year-old girl sat up, stood to her feet, and started walking around the room!

OBSERVATION: On the one hand, the Jewish ruler was being told to give up and go back home, for his daughter had died. However, Jesus told him something totally different. At the home of Jairus, the crowd mocked Jesus because he said that the daughter of Jairus was only asleep. What was Jairus to believe? You and I have this type of dilemma every day, so how do we know which way to go. or who to believe?

APPLICATION: Jairus could very easily have succumbed to the pressure of the crowd around him – friends, co-laborers, Jewish authorities, etc. for he knew them a whole lot longer than he knew this ‘Jesus’ who he had just heard of. After all, what must the crowd be thinking about Jairus being so receptive to this new ‘profit’ that seemed to be causing such an uproar? Friends, if you tune in closely to the voices of the crowd around you every day – at work; at the grocery story; at the gym; at the gas station or the movie theater, many of these individuals are pretty far out in their thoughts, words and actions. They often look down on Christians and churches and this fictional character (in their minds) that they hear us talking about – Jesus. We hear many voices dear friends, and if we are not strong in our faith, and in a personal relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ, they might easily distract us and pull us into their way of thinking – after all they seem to be happy, they seem to be rich, they seem to have a lot of things going in their favor. Jesus told Jairus: just keep on believing! I believe that He is telling you and I today that we are to just keep on believing. When He called your name and you accepted Him as Lord and Savior, you were so convinced, that you totally surrendered your life to Him. Yes, you’ve not made it a priority to read His Word every day. Yes, you’ve not made it a priority to speak (pray) to Him every day. Yes you’ve allowed many other things to come before Him when you should have been refueling your spiritual tank at church. Yes, you’ve been hanging around some friends who are not at all sold out on Jesus. So in retrospect, whose voice are you really hearing? May I encourage you today dear friend, to not only accept my Lord as your personal Savior, but please consider making Him a daily priority in your life. You may easily be put in the position that Jairus was in – do you listen to the crowd, or do you listen to Jesus? I pray that the decision will be very easy and convincing for you. Jesus is my Rock, my Redeemer; my Savior; and my everlasting Lord. Know Him today my friend, and know the everlasting peace that He brings. You won’t regret one minute of it!

PRAYER: Dearest Lord Jesus, thank You for accepting me as Your very own son, and thank You for accepting all those who will read this devotional and have committed their life to Your lordship. Please help us to stay so in tuned with You on a daily basis that we will by like simple sheep that listen to the voice of their shepherd and obediently follow his commands. You are my Shepherd! Please help me to follow you all the days of my life. Please humble the hearts of all those who will read this devotional today, and call them to a close and lasting relationship with Yourself. AMEN!

Go Tell

Friday, 2019-04-25

Bible Reference: Mark 5:18-20
Translation: The Voice (VOICE)

Bible Text: 18 When Jesus climbed back into the boat, the cured demoniac asked if he could come and be with Him, but Jesus said no.
Jesus: 19 Stay here; I want you to go back home to your own people and let them see what the Lord has done—how He has had mercy on you.
20 So the man went away and began telling this news in the Ten Cities region; wherever he went, people were amazed by what he told them.

OBSERVATION: When something good happens to us, we need no prodding to head on out and tell the world about it. But what is it about the miraculous touch of God that causes us to keep something so wonderful all to ourselves? Could it be that our fear of rejection is far more powerful, than our release of praise to our Maker? Let’s think about that today…

APPLICATION: In our story today from the Scriptures, there seems to be two reactions taken by the healed demonic-filled man. The first human instinct was to stay close to the One who healed him, and I believe that reaction is still very prevalent today. Think about it – haven’t you heard someone say that they would never leave a certain church because of how good they were to them? Or the same about a certain pastor – because he took time to pray with them and that brought healing to their desperately aching body? Yes, we still react in much the same way as the healed man wanted to do. But think carefully about the second reaction that was induced by Jesus Himself. The man was told that instead of sticking close to Jesus, the source of his healing, he was told to go and share that miracle with others – those that may be struggling in their faith, or those who stand at a distance in wanting to trust in God. I believe this all boils down to someone hearing about a firsthand experience, rather than a story about someone else’s experience. I can watch a video about a motorcycle crash and marvel over the survival of the driver, but when I hear first hand how God protected a friend in a similar crash, and how they knew without a doubt that it was God who protected them and saved them – which do you think will get my attention? In which story do you suppose I will see the importance of knowing the God who saved these two drivers? Friends, I believe that this story, and this command by Jesus to ‘go and tell’, comes at a time that we all must be willing to share our miracle with a friend or family member, for this may be the very thing that will convince them of: the real, the loving, the all-powerful God that we serve, love and adore. Sure we should go to church and sing our praises to our Lord and Savior, and share our miracles with one another, but let’s also pray for opportunities to share our story with anyone that would listen – anyone that needs Jesus!

PRAYER: Precious Lord, please open the doors of opportunity for us to share Jesus with one another today. Especially with those who have not met and surrendered their lives to Him personally. May they see the joy of the Lord in our lives, and may they experience His marvelous love in every word that we speak and every action that we take. May someone see Jesus today because they came into contact with us, for this is my heart-cry today dear Lord. AMEN!

The Danger Of Not Surrendering ALL

Thursday, 2019-04-25

Bible Reference: 2 Kings 15:1–5
Translation: The Good news Translation (GNT)

Bible Text: In the 27th year of the reign of King Jeroboam II of Israel, Uzziah son of Amaziah became king of Judah at the age of sixteen, and he ruled in Jerusalem for 52 years. His mother was Jecoliah from Jerusalem. Following the example of his father, he did what was pleasing to the LORD. But the pagan places of worship were not destroyed, and the people continued to offer sacrifices and burn incense there. The LORD struck Uzziah with a dreaded skin disease that stayed with him the rest of his life. He lived in a house on his own, relieved of all duties, while his son Jotham governed the country.

OBSERVATION: I believe there will be great opportunities for worship, and for winning the hearts of the lost for Jesus, if they saw into the depths of a totally surrendered heart, when they looked at us!

APPLICATION: It seems like there is always one aspect of our lives that we don’t fully turn over to God. In this king’s life, he came short of cleaning up his country for the Lord by leaving the pagan places of worship. I wonder what all we leave behind when we, supposedly, surrender it ‘ALL‘ to Jesus? Perhaps ‘ALL‘ that we feel is necessary to surrender to Him? God brought great condemnation on the kings that did this. I wonder how much is really brought upon us because of our lack of commitment and total surrender. I bet we could not imagine how much sweeter our relationship with Christ would really be if we totally surrendered ALL of ourselves to Him. Not only was a dreadful disease (punishment) brought on King Uzziah, but the people continued to worship their pagan gods. The un-surrendered parts of our lives will be heavily attacked by Satan, because he sees that as an inroad into the life of a believer in Christ. What stops us from surrendering all to Jesus? I believe there will be great opportunities for worship, and for winning the hearts of the lost for Jesus, if they saw into the depths of a totally surrendered heart. Let’s seek His face and ask Him for the help we need to do this, friends.

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, please help us to search deep within our hearts and analyze those parts of our lives that we have not totally surrendered to You. After meditating on Your Word this morning, I feel like I must do this, because I likened it to me making a long trip in a nice RV, but leaving the air-conditioners at home. The trip would be a lot more tolerable and comfortable if I had the units with me. When my life is not totally surrendered to You, I live life similar to my RV trip, missing some very important pieces that could drastically improve the quality of life on earth for me. Furthermore, my joy while serving You down here would be so rich, that I couldn’t even imagine how much sweeter it would be when I see You face to face in heaven! Satan is after us with such intensity already, please help us to not leave any parts of our lives even more vulnerable to Him. May Satan, and all of those that my friends and I come into contact with see Jesus in all of His fullness and glory! AMEN!

Church Leaders As Shepherds

Wednesday, 2019-04-24

Bible Reference: 1 Peter 5:2–4
Translation: The Contemporary English Version (CEV)

Bible Text: Just as shepherds watch over their sheep, you must watch over everyone God has placed in your care. Do it willingly in order to please God, and not simply because you think you must. Let it be something you want to do, instead of something you do merely to make money. Don’t be bossy to those people who are in your care, but set an example for them. Then when Christ the Chief Shepherd returns, you will be given a crown that will never lose its glory.

OBSERVATION: If we hold a place of leadership in God’s church, then we have a responsibility to watch over those we lead with the same love and care that God has for us.

APPLICATION: We tend to expect a lot out of our pastors. In fact, we tend to think that they are invincible and not subject to the same sin and temptations that we encounter daily. Some translations tend to see this section of scripture addressed to elders, while some use more general terms of church leaders. I am not here to clarify either of these, but rather to remind us that if we hold a place of leadership in God’s church, then we have a responsibility to watch over those we lead with the same love and care that God has for us. We should not be in a place of leadership unless we could be a leader from a heart of love for the Lord and for His local church. We should have within us the desire to see the work of the Lord flourish – for His glory, therefore our work should be done unselfishly and with a heart to work for our master, not because of anything that we might personally gain from any position that we might hold. Most people learn better from what they are shown than from what they are told, therefore Peter warns that leaders are to lead by example rather than trying to throw around your authority. The super great news is that regardless whether we are ignored for our efforts in the work of the church here on earth, all we do for Jesus will be recognized by Him when we see Him face to face one day. In fact, Peter suggested that we would gain a crown that will never lose its glory! I could only imagine the smile on my Savior’s face as He welcomes me home and thanks me for returning the favor for what He did for me on Calvary, by all that I attempted to do to promote His kingdom while here on earth! Oh that will be, glory for me! Are you looking forward to this also friend? Please don’t shy away from the Lord’s work. There’s much to be done, and many to be reached with the gospel. Jesus used others to find us and bless us, now let’s make ourselves available for the work of the Lord. Yes, God can use even you and I for His glory!

PRAYER: Lord we work hard around our churches and sometimes we get discouraged because we feel unappreciated by church leaders and/or members. Thank You for using Your servant Peter to show us that our expectations are unimportant here on earth, for our efforts should always be directed towards pleasing the only One that we serve, our Lord and Savior! In fact I believe that most often when we expect glory here on earth, it could easily mean that we may not necessarily be doing kingdom work. May we be found faithful in all that we do for Your ultimate glory. May You be lifted higher when others recognize a benefit from our efforts here below. I ask these things in the name of the Lord that I adore, the Lord that I seek to please by all that I do here below, AMEN!

Pattern Your Lives After The One To Whom You Belong

Tuesday, 2019-04-23

Bible Reference: 1 Peter 1:14-16
Translation: Living Bible (TLB)

Bible Text: 14 Obey God because you are his children; don’t slip back into your old ways—doing evil because you knew no better. 15 But be holy now in everything you do, just as the Lord is holy, who invited you to be his child. 16 He himself has said, “You must be holy, for I am holy.”

OBSERVATION: In Leviticus 11:44-45 God set the stage for what Peter is teaching in our verses today. For in Leviticus God reminded the Israelites of what He had brought them from, or out of, and how they were now benefiting from His mighty works. Peter now draws a parallel by showing us how we are very much like the Israelites. As we meditate on this, let’s be drawn into the very presence of our great High Priest who has lifted us up from the mire of sin and brought us into His glorious light!

APPLICATION: Even at my age, I am still amazed about the way that children assume the good attitudes and practices of their parents, and often to the total disappointment of many adults, how they also pick up on, and practice the bad habits that they learn at home. In playing baseball with my daughter when she was very young, she turns aside from the batting box, spat, and then turned back to really hit the ball hard on the next pitch that was thrown to her. She was convinced from watching the professionals, that this was the practice that would help her really hit the ball! Funny, isn’t it? But that’s just one example of how they watch their parents and other adults, and practice what they see them doing. So do you assume that is different from the way that adults act? I would dare say that it is not. For what do you assume might be the issue when we find it so challenging to commit to taking a leadership role in our church? Could it be that we would not be as free as our neighbor, or best friend, to take off whenever we want to and ‘enjoy life’? What would Jesus do? If we are to be holy as our Father is holy, our Mentor, our Deliverer and our Savior, wouldn’t we be seeking to follow in His footsteps and in all holiness, be the same type of person that He was/is? What were the things that were important to Him? He said that He would wait to hear from His father before speaking – in some instances; before responding – in some instances, etc. Friends, we are being cautioned to not drift back into our former life, and our old worldly habits, but instead to give every effort to becoming more like our leader – Jesus, our Teacher, and our Lord. May I suggest that you evaluate your life and ask God to open your spiritual eyes to understand who you are becoming – one following God’s example? or one who is still immersed in following your former life. Oh that our eyes might be fixed on Jesus, our soon coming King, and may our lives reflect to whom we belong!

PRAYER: Dear Lord Jesus, please humble your children who will meditate on this devotional today. May we see You clearly, and therefore be reminded of our shortcomings and inadequate means of being holy, without a special touch from You Lord, for You alone are holy. Lord, I want to see You, but until the time that You will call me home, may I live in such a way that others will see You. May You be glorified through each of us oh Lord! AMEN!

Recognizing God’s Mighty Works

Monday, 2019-04-22

Bible Reference: 1 Kings 20:28
Translation: Good News Translation (GNT)

Bible Text: 28 A prophet went to King Ahab and said, “This is what the LORD says: ‘Because the Syrians say that I am a god of the hills and not of the plains, I will give you victory over their huge army, and you and your people will know that I am the LORD.’ ”

OBSERVATION: I wonder what it would take to truly get the attention of our church attendees, or our lost neighbors, or our busy communities? I believe that God shows Himself miraculously, and in very loving and kind ways every day, but what do we hear about the results of this – perhaps it was a stroke of good luck, or I had it coming to me, or…..

APPLICATION: God performed miracles and gave great successes to the army of King Ahab, with hopes that this might get the attention of the people. Our country today, and many others that we hear about, are in sad shape as far as their spiritual well-being. I wonder what it would take to get the attention of the masses. Back at the time of the 911 disaster, many flocked to neighborhood churches – at least for a few days. After major local, or national disasters, people will flock together to gain strength for each other. and possibly from a ‘higher being’, as some might refer to my God. So we know that disasters really work, although we really don’t want to see something so drastic happen again. Miracles happen every day, but do we (those who belong to and acknowledge God) brag enough about them – to help those not involved, know about the wonderful works of God? Christians, we must give God credit when we see things happening in response to our prayers. The things that we hear from non-Christians are anything but godly, because they don’t know our Savior. But what about you and I, fellow believers, do we tend to recognize the mighty works of God, and let the world know who’s in charge, and who’s responsible for the answers to our prayers? Or are we so caught up in the rush and hustle of each day, that we brush it off and stay in our little corner of the world? Many of us are so saturated in the things of this world as pushed by the media, that I would question how long it would take for us to even recognize an actual God-sighting in our homes or in our neighborhoods or churches? Friends, God loves us so much that He is willing to try almost anything to get our attention. Please join me in being super attentive to God’s hand at work today in our lives and all around us! Let’s get used to doing this so that the world will know that our God is alive and waiting for them to call upon His name. Let’s acknowledge Him in our times of struggle, in our need for salvation, and may we freely and instinctively respond in such awesome praise and worship to our Ling that the world will know and believe in the God that we serve!.

PRAYER: Thank You Lord Jesus for loving me enough to send things my way to wake me up, to get my attention to Your wonderful works. Thank You for providing so much for me to enjoy in this beautiful world that You have created. Thank You for being patient with me and forgiving of me when I am distracted by this old world and other unimportant things. Lord, of what purpose would our journey here on earth be, if others are not pointed to You through our lives? Please work on me today to give You credit for all that You are doing, so that some lost person might want to know more about the Savior that I love, adore and serve. Lord, may You have an impact on the lost through the words and/or actions of Your saints that may meditate on this devotional today, is my humble prayer. AMEN!

Allow God’s Word to Nurture Your Hearts

Saturday, 2019-04-20

Bible Reference: Mark 4:8 & 20
Translation: Living Bible (TLB)

Bible Text: But some of the seeds fell into good soil and yielded thirty times as much as he had planted—some of it even sixty or a hundred times as much!……..
20 “But the good soil represents the hearts of those who truly accept God’s message and produce a plentiful harvest for God—thirty, sixty, or even a hundred times as much as was planted in their hearts.”

OBSERVATION: There are certain things that we hear, that will make no difference in our hearts, for the words simply go in one ear and out of the next. We are taught in this parable today that the extent to which we listen, absorb and use what we hear is a ‘heart’ matter. More on this as we meditate on the parable of the sower.

APPLICATION: I bet you remember as a child, that some things you were told by your parents were intended to hold a lot of significance, and there would normally be strong implications if you ignored or avoided following the instructions given to you. However, there were certain things that they told you not to do that you saw them practice almost every day, so you took those instructions very lightly. But thanks be to God, Jesus told this parable to help us better understand why some hear His Word without very little impact, while a friend who hears the same message, with a heart that is open and willing to let it serve its full God-given purpose, is fully impacted, taught and motivated to use that Word for the glory of God. Friends, I believe that this should speak to our hearts about how we are sometimes so out of tune with God, that we might be in the right venue (church); we might be under the right preaching (minister of the gospel); and we might have no problem with our hearing, yet we walk away without having heard, or at least without being impacted by the Gospel of Jesus Christ! Have you ever noticed that when there is purpose in your heart about a project that you want to do, how carefully you read instruction; how carefully you listen to teaching; how earnestly you seek after advice; and how ready you are to listen to the experience of others? So why is this not happening to us in our Christian walk, and our learning of God? Are we not serious about drawing closer to God, and desiring to do the things of God? Are we back in our childhood days, where we easily brush off, or ignore the things taught to us that oppose our fancy – even in the case of those things ordered by God? I believe that this would be a perfect day for us to have God cleanse our hearts and renew a right spirit within us, so that we might become fertile ground for His Word taught and preached tomorrow – Easter Sunday! Oh, may the words that we hear, be sent by God with the specific purpose of growing our relationship with Him, and for the enrichment of our souls that could then be used of God in our everyday lives, with our everyday friends. Father, please look down in love and be glorified by the work of Your Holy Spirit in the minefield of our hearts and souls. Friends, we are not here because God needed a drop-off place to put us until He returns. We are here as His hands, His feet and His mouthpiece, to be used for the salvation of the lost, and to bring glory to His Son, Jesus Christ.

PRAYER: Oh that we may be found faithful to the work that You have laid out for us to do, precious Lord. May the sincerity of our hearts, the words from our lips and every action that we take, be avenues of ministry to spread the good news of Jesus Christ, our risen Lord and our faithful Redeemer. AMEN!

It’s Done

Friday, 2019-04-19

Bible Reference: John 19:28-30
Translation: The Message (MSG)

Bible Text: Jesus, seeing that everything had been completed so that the Scripture record might also be complete, then said, “I’m thirsty.” A jug of sour wine was standing by. Someone put a sponge soaked with the wine on a javelin and lifted it to his mouth. After he took the wine, Jesus said, “It’s done . . . complete.” Bowing his head, he offered up his spirit.

OBSERVATION: Without sounding too morbid, I believe the reality of Jesus’ last words will no doubt be echoed by someone today as they wrap things up here on this earth. What does the term mean? What does it mean for you to say those words? What does it mean when you hear someone near to you say those words? Let us meditate on these words in the light of our eternity, in our time together today!

APPLICATION: These simple words are widely used today in many ways, with a variety of meaning. A chef who has labored over a meal for an important couple, might say to his butler, ‘It’s done!’ Meaning, we are now ready to present the best meal this important couple has ever experienced, and that they have longed for since they entered our restaurant. The chef is proud of how everything turned out, and he can’t wait to peek through the kitchen window and watch the expression on the faces of royalty as they taste this meal! In a similar scenario, a contractor has just completed a 2-year project in building a world class hotel. It’s done! As the doors are opened and the hotel begins to fill up, the contractor stands back with great pride as he sees that his attention to detail and perfection has paid off! For he sees the look on the face of the owners who are filled with pride, enjoying the grand opening! The contractors job is done, and the hotel is being used as it was designed and built. When Jesus was born, the angels declared that this baby was born in purity, to bring the purity of heaven to mankind. His whole purpose in life was to bring salvation to a lost, hopeless and powerless world that didn’t stand a chance of seeing the glories of heaven based on anything they could do or say on their own. In His short life here on earth, Jesus was obedient to His Father, and through many miracles; extensions of love to the unlovable; care and healing for those without any hope; and encouragement for those who felt helpless; He brought the miracle of everlasting life! Something that every generation had strived for, but failed so miserably at. Yet God, in His awesome mercy, sent us His very own Son to bring life – everlasting life in heaven for all eternity. Something that we were incapable of on our own. On a day, just like today, the Jews were tired of the good our Lord did in their midst, so they did what they thought was their only option – they condemned Him to death, on a cross, like other criminals of their day. But friends, we commemorate that horrific day still today – literally today on the calendar we commemorate Good Friday. For our Lord had to die to fulfill the work of His Father. Had there not been death, there would be no resurrection – that we celebrate on Easter Sunday, and every Sunday of the year! So when we hear the words ‘It is finished’, or ‘It is done’, let’s remember that Jesus had completed the tasks for which He came – He was done! And because He died and rose again, we have insight into what will happen to those for whom He came to earth. We too will rise to meet our Lord, our Savior, our Father, our God – in heaven, where we will live eternally. So don’t be sad today as you remember the death of our Lord, for Sunday’s ‘a comin! Praise the everlasting name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ! Please find yourself in church on Sunday to join hearts and voices as we celebrate the resurrection of our Savior and Lord! You ask me how I know He lives? My friend, He lives within my heart!!

PRAYER: Precious Lord Jesus, thank You for putting up with mankind while You were here on earth. Thank You for all You did on Calvary, so that we might have hope in tomorrow – our everlasting future in Heaven with You and the Father. Please forgive us – all of mankind for our selfishness and ungratefulness, as dished out to You on the cross. Oh Lord, please prick our hearts every time that we turn our eyes away from You. Please draw us back to the cross, back to You – our only hope for eternity. Lord we are in awe of You and all that You did for us. May we truly and sincerely worship You all the days of our life. AMEN!