There’s Always A Cost For Delays

Delays are often very frustrating, and often cause us to lose our patience! However, yesterday there were thousands of self induced delays that members of our churches made, when presented with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Meditate with me on what happened in your respective church services over the weekend. Most attendees heard the Word of God, but they delayed their decision to act on the invitation given at the time. The big question is, what might this delay have cost them? Perhaps they said like Felix did, “I will deal with this another time”. Will there be ‘another time’ for them?

Monday, 2020-03-02
Written at: Paul B Johnson State Park, Hattiesburg, MS

Bible Reference: Acts 24:24-25
Translation: Good News Translation (GNT)

Bible Text: 24 After some days Felix came with his wife Drusilla, who was Jewish. He sent for Paul and listened to him as he talked about faith in Christ Jesus. 25 But as Paul went on discussing about goodness, self-control, and the coming Day of Judgment, Felix was afraid and said, “You may leave now. I will call you again when I get the chance.”

OBSERVATION: Delays are often very frustrating, and often cause us to lose our patience! However, yesterday there were thousands of self induced delays that members of our churches made, when presented with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Meditate with me on what happened in your respective church services over the weekend. Most attendees heard the Word of God, but they delayed their decision to act on the invitation given at the time. The big question is, what might this delay have cost them? Perhaps they said like Felix did, “I will deal with this another time”. Will there be ‘another time’ for them?

APPLICATION: When travelling to another state or country by plane or train, there is often the chance of delays, for one reason or another. If the fault is attributed to the airline, then they will often provide vouchers to the stranded passengers for food, and sometimes even for hotel, if the delay will prevent travelling the same day. Can you begin to imagine the costs paid by carriers for these delays? Yesterday the message of the Gospel was presented, and thousands of attendees at thousands of churches were given the opportunity to surrender their lives to Jesus as their Lord and Savior. No doubt your church, like mine, saw folk leave without accepting the invitation of the pastor, and the Holy Spirit that tugged on their hearts. I’m sure that there were many excuses for the decisions to delay following Christ. Why some left during the singing of the last hymn, because it was more important to be the first out of the busy church parking lot, or to be the first at the popular restaurants. Priorities of the individuals! But we are reminded through God’s Word, that He is in full control of their time here on earth. Will they have another opportunity quite like they had yesterday? Thankfully, I made it all the way home safely yesterday. Did everyone else from our church services have that same good fortune? Perhaps they did, or perhaps they didn’t. God’s Word has very clear advice for us when it tells us that “now is the accepted time”, the only moment promised to us. Think about this friends: at our borders all those arriving with proper authentication (passports and appropriate visas) are allowed in, while others are rejected and expatriated back to their home country. This will be no different at the entrance to Heaven’s portals, because the rules are similar to those followed by our immigration officers. For entrance into heaven, only those who have personally accepted Jesus as their Lord and Savior (that’s their passport and visa) will be accepted into God’s eternal home, others will be returned to their home of choice with Satan and his band of demons. Friends, please don’t delay, it could cost you eternal life with the God of this universe. The creator, Savior and King, who loved you enough to die on a cruel cross, so that you might receive forgiveness of your sin, when you invite Him in. Your delay could cost you big time. Please let me encourage you to not even wait for the next service time, contact a pastor or Christian leader of a local church, or contact me so that I may help you, but PLEASE, don’t delay, make a decision today.

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, many of us just attended church yesterday and here you are beating up on us again today through this illustration with Felix delaying his decision to hear more from Paul. The delays brought on by Felix cost him. I pray that my readers, and all those that we love and pray for, will accept You at Your Word, while there is time to do so. Thank You for loving us enough to have given us multiple opportunities do this. And while we have no control over whether there will be another opportunity, I pray that many will STOP and cry out to You even now. I praise You for not giving up on me. Today I humbly plead with You to melt the hearts of those that meditated on this devotional with me today, as they were given another opportunity to call on You for salvation. Please bring them to their senses and embolden them to make this vital decision. Without further delays, may today be the day of salvation for all who might meditate on this devotional with me. For this is my humble and earnest prayer, in the name of Jesus alone, and for His glory alone. AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog might indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. If you are anywhere near the Sebring, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would highly recommend to you Bible Fellowship Church, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!

Don’t Wait

Have you ever procrastinated, or waited enough that when you finally decided to take action, the object was no longer available to you? Often there are repercussions to waiting. Fortunately the Jews and Gentiles who witnessed the evil spirit in the man referenced in verse 16, had their eyes opened, and they realized that they were subject to such evil also, as long as they were separated from the Almighty. This caused them to commit themselves to the lordship of Jesus Christ, the only One with power to overcome the evil one. What will it take to open your eyes, or the eyes of your loved ones who have waited and waited before accepting Jesus?

Friday, 2020-02-14

Bible Reference: Acts 19:16-20
Translation: Good News Translation (GNT)

Bible Text: 16 The man who had the evil spirit in him attacked them with such violence that he overpowered them all. They ran away from his house, wounded and with their clothes torn off. 17All the Jews and Gentiles who lived in Ephesus heard about this; they were all filled with fear, and the name of the Lord Jesus was given greater honor. 18Many of the believers came, publicly admitting and revealing what they had done. 19Many of those who had practiced magic brought their books together and burnt them in public. They added up the price of the books, and the total came to 50,000 silver coins. 20In this powerful way the word of the Lord kept spreading and growing stronger.

OBSERVATION: Have you ever procrastinated, or waited enough that when you finally decided to take action, the object was no longer available to you? Often there are repercussions to waiting. Fortunately the Jews and Gentiles who witnessed the evil spirit in the man referenced in verse 16, had their eyes opened, and they realized that they were subject to such evil also, as long as they were separated from the Almighty. This caused them to commit themselves to the lordship of Jesus Christ, the only One with power to overcome the evil one. What will it take to open your eyes, or the eyes of your loved ones who have waited and waited before accepting Jesus?

APPLICATION: It seems miraculous how God got to the masses at Ephesus! I say ‘masses’ because we are told that many practiced witchcraft and sorcery. I’m sure that God was mightily using His servant Paul, but He also used a situation that actually involved a few of their own wicked bunch to get through to the people. In our focal verses we read where God brought great fear among the people by intensifying a situation between the wicked and the pretenders who tried to mimic Paul’s ministry. I find it so amazing, that in spite of all that God did at Calvary for us, yet He will still use scenarios that really affect our lives to get our attention and bring us to our senses. Oh, how He loves us! I know of situations where, through death of a loved one, a relative gave his heart to the Lord. Likewise, you may know of situations where others came to the Lord through war, or automobile accidents, etc. Friends, why do we need tragedy to bring us to our knees? God is still God, whether we are on a mountain top scenario, or whether we are at the very bottom because of a tragedy. What will it take to get your attention friend? Jesus showed great love for us on the cross. Let us recognize His goodness daily and allow Him preeminence over every aspect of our lives. When we do this, we prepare our hearts for the tough times, in that we know that our Master will be victorious even through those times. To those meditating on this today that have not yet accepted Jesus as Lord, please make this a day of salvation for yourself. Just as building muscle will help you withstand injury in a fall or other serious impact to the body, knowing Jesus will give you the calm assurance in good and bad times, that regardless of the outcome of a situation, you are assured, and have peace about your eternal destination. Just as we are told in verse 20 that the work of the Lord grew stronger, I want to remind you that when you surrender your life to Jesus, He will find ways to use your witness to also grow His work among your unsaved loved ones, for the ultimate glory of the Almighty God. Please don’t wait for God to use an unfortunate disaster in your life or the life of a loved one, for Him to bring you to your knees. He loves you enough that He would do anything to get through to you, so give your heart to Him willingly and not under due rest, please?

PRAYER: Dear God, in Your precious name I want to ask that You again tender the hearts of my loved ones that don’t yet know You in a personal and intimate way. Please cause their hearts to look up to You in surrender and then plead forgiveness of their sin. Please may it be enough that they be stirred in their spirit to surrender, without having to use drastic measures to get their attention. Lord, may I have that same urgency today in sharing Your love with someone who needs that final word of encouragement before making this vital decision. Please bless in wonderful ways today, is my humble prayer made in Your most holy name, AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog might indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. If you are anywhere near the Sebring, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would highly recommend to you Bible Fellowship Church, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!

Sharing Your Experience Could Change The World

There’s a new song out that my pastor loves, and it contains the lyrics ‘I’m just a nobody, trying to tell everybody, about somebody, who saved my soul’. Perhaps you might want to listen to the song while reading this devotional, because it declares exactly what this Samaritan woman did after her encounter with Jesus at the well. Meditate with me as we ponder the actions of this woman who was considered a ‘nobody’ by the society of that day, yet how sharing her story impacted ‘everybody’ in her town.

Monday, 2019-10-07

Bible Reference: John 4:39-42
Translation: The Voice (VOICE)

Bible Text: 39 Meanwhile, because one woman shared with her neighbors how Jesus exposed her past and present, the village of Sychar was transformed—many Samaritans heard and believed. 40 The Samaritans approached Jesus and repeatedly invited Him to stay with them, so He lingered there for two days on their account41 With the words that came from His mouth, there were many more believing Samaritans. 42 They began their faith journey because of the testimony of the woman beside the well; but when they heard for themselves, they were convinced the One they were hearing was and is God’s Anointed, the Liberating King, sent to rescue the entire world.

OBSERVATION: There’s a new song out that my pastor loves, and it contains the lyrics ‘I’m just a nobody, trying to tell everybody, about somebody, who saved my soul‘. Perhaps you might want to listen to the song while reading this devotional, because it declares exactly what this Samaritan woman did after her encounter with Jesus at the well. Meditate with me as we ponder the actions of this woman who was considered a ‘nobody’ by the society of that day, yet how sharing her story impacted ‘everybody’ in her town.

APPLICATION: I was told at a conference by a Disney World official that Disney is considered one of the cleanest parks to visit, because it is expected of every employee that they pick up litter, no matter where they are on the property. Is that the way it is in the Christian arena? Do we all have it in our Christian job description that we are to ‘share with everybody about the somebody who saved our soul‘? The unfortunate thing is that society as a whole have their own preconceived ideas about whose job it is to share Christ with them. And unless they hear that ‘word’ from a qualified and recognized pastor, they will really test and retest what is being shared with them. But regardless of that, let us think about our Bible verses so we could remember the setting. The disciples were convinced that Jesus was the Son of God, and although they may not have realized the full impact of all that meant, they had their preconceived ideas about who He should be hanging around with. However, having left Him alone for just a few minutes, they returned to find Him chatting up and drinking water from a ‘nobody’ – a Samaritan, and Samaritans were generally despised, and considered ‘nobodies’ by the Jews. Additionally, this was a Samaritan ‘woman’, a gender that was always considered only as behind-the-scenes helpers. But to Jesus, this was just a ‘somebody’ who needed to meet and know the great High Priest who could save her soul. This was so mind-blowing for the woman, that Jesus showed His power to help her know that He truly was the Son of God. Now comes the time that the Scripture really draws us in, to more closely examine ourselves. I believe from the very beginning, we could see that we are very much like the Samaritan woman, for we would often say to someone who we know needs the Lord – wait just a minute, let me call my pastor so he could chat with you about my best friend, who I’m sure could help you through your situation. Excuse me dear one, but who do you call on to tell your neighbor about your spouse, or your child? Do you really need to call in the authority to tell someone about the One who saved your soul? The One who assured you that He is the very Son of God? The One who told you that He has prepared a place for you, that when your time here on earth has expired, you will join Him and His Father in your new home in heaven, where you will live in an attitude of praise for ever and for ever? Does it really need someone else to tell that glorious truth for you? The Samaritan woman needed no help, for the words just bubbled forth from her mouth – and many were impacted for the Lord! I believe that you are probably a Brother or a Sister of that dear Samaritan woman, and I believe that she would quickly join me in encouraging you to ‘tell everybody about somebody who saved your soul‘. Dear fiend, there are many around you that are hurting today, and who needs a word of encouragement to help them know that there is hope in knowing that somebody loves them and will welcome them into His kingdom, just like He did for you. Tell somebody today, won’t you?

PRAYER: Heavenly Father, thank You for this reminder today! You have bless many of my readers and myself with the reassurance of Your love; of the reassurance of our salvation; of the boldness that we need to share Your grace with everybody that we come into contact with today. Please help us to love each other like You fist loved us, and how You continue to love us every day. Please embolden us to help save ‘somebody’ from the destination of Hell into the wonderful light and glory of heaven. Please keep it forefront in our minds that we should make every effort to rescue all those we know and meet, so that no one will be left behind. Heaven is for everyone who believes in the Lord Jesus and accept Him as their precious and loving Savior. That includes everyone we will meet today. May we be busy about Your work loving Lord. AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog might indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. If you are anywhere near the Sebring, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would highly recommend to you Bible Fellowship Church, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!

The Value of The Scripture

Imagine your pastor pulling a young man, that shows a lot of promise, alongside of him and promises to work with him to become an effective minister of the Word of God. What are some things that you suppose your pastor, and your church might expect of this young man? Hours and hours of diligence in the Word; Seminary, or at least Bible School; etc, etc. Now, let me encourage you to look into the Word for instruction on what you should do. It seems to me, that this Scripture today is giving some direction regarding the dilemma, and possibly the answer to what your pastor is facing, so let’s look closely at this….

SCRIPTURE  FROM:   2 Timothy 3:15-17 (ERV)

TEXT:  15 You have known the Holy Scriptures since you were a child. These Scriptures are able to make you wise. And that wisdom leads to salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. 16 All Scripture is given by God. And all Scripture is useful for teaching and for showing people what is wrong in their lives. It is useful for correcting faults and teaching the right way to live. 17 Using the Scriptures, those who serve God will be prepared and will have everything they need to do every good work.

OBSERVATION:   Imagine your pastor pulling a young man, that shows a lot of promise, alongside of him and promises to work with him to become an effective minister of the Word of God. What are some things that you suppose your pastor, and your church might expect of this young man? Hours and hours of diligence in the Word; Seminary, or at least Bible School; etc, etc. Now, let me encourage you to look into the Word for instruction on what you should do. It seems to me, that this Scripture today is giving some direction regarding the dilemma, and possibly the answer to what your pastor is facing, so let’s look closely at this….

APPLICATION:   Paul, having gone through a wide range of challenges in his ministry, had lots of advice and direction for Timothy who was setting out in ministry. I believe that if we looked at everything that Paul had to offer Timothy, some might say that he had enough challenges of his own, that he would probably do everything possible to discourage this young man from the ministry, although he didn’t! Looking at this from Timothy’s standpoint, we could see where Timothy could easily approach every situation with the same mindset that he saw his local church/church leaders handle situations. However, what adds so much to this story for us is that Paul took on young Timothy as his own son. It shows where Paul cared for Timothy’s well being and for his success in ministry – both for the benefit of the kingdom, and for himself personally. So I believe that the obvious thing that Paul might tell Timothy, is to study the Bible often, and study it very deeply – and I believe that any pastor about to mentor a young ‘Timothy’ would probably do the same. In fact, I believe that any good church leadership would probably tell a young, prospective minister who felt called to the ministry to do the same, and it would be advice patterned after Scripture – today’s Scripture! So why is this important? I believe that for one to teach or preach the Word of God, and tell others about the character and life of Jesus Christ, then it is critically important to get into the Word and saturate yourself with it. There are many other books that we could read where good, qualified teachers have written about the ‘Book’, but please don’t allow that to take the place of you digging into the Word of God often and very deeply. From personal experience, I can tell you that there are days that I might read the Word and I struggle to gain anything personally from it. However, there are days that I can read back over a passage that I previously got nothing from, and God has a special message for me at that time. As I read, I tend to use a few different highlighters: green for highlighting phrases through which I felt God speaking direct to me about something; yellow for highlighting various warnings that God used to get our attention; and red to highlight specific things that God told us not to do. Did I get these ideas from some big seminary and passing them on to you to use? No, but these are tools that I chose to use, so that when I study or refer to that Scripture again, those words will ‘pop’ and quickly draw my attention to them. The other tool I use, is multiple versions of the Bible. Each time I read through the Bible I use a different version. The different ways that some translators or commentators choose to word a passage, might serve to help me better understand what is being said, or what was intended by the sometimes challenging verbiage of some older translations. Other advice I would offer is that it is ‘God’s’ Word, so ask Him to open your mind and your understanding, so that you could grasp what He wants to say to you through the words you are about to read and understand. In training an up and coming ‘Timothy’ it is way more important for him to see and understand from you when he knows that you are in the Word personally, rather than detailing what the textbook says from your seminary. As you learn from, and draw closer to God, you are in much better shape to mentor someone wanting to walk the same path that you took!

PRAYER:   Lord, thank You for touching the hearts, minds and souls of men and women around the world who have committed their lives to the full time ministry of Your Word. People still need the Lord, so it is still very important that new ‘Timothy’s’ arise every day and commit themselves to serving the King of all kings! Thank You Father for drawing men and women unto Yourself, and thank You for preparing them for Your ministry. Sometimes You do this through others that might encourage, teach and set a good example for the new minister. Please bless those who fill that role every day! Please continue to bless our churches with new volunteers who will take the ministry seriously and whose sole purpose is to see Your kingdom increase and be glorified. I stand in awe of Your mercy on us oh Lord! AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’.  If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog could indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely to subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. If you are anywhere near the Sebring, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!

 

Celebration Time!!

Can you imagine the joy that we feel when we hear the good news that one whom we have prayed for, surrendered their hearts to Jesus? Now top that off with the party the angels have when they rejoice around the throne in heaven! It’s ‘Celebration Time’ on earth and in heaven when a lost person accepts the call of Jesus upon their life! To God be the glory!

Post Date:

Wednesday, 2017-08-15
SCRIPTURE

From:

Luke 15:6-10 (ERV)

Text:

6 …. go to your friends and neighbors and say to them, ‘Be happy with me because I found my lost sheep!’ 7 In the same way, I tell you, heaven is a happy place when one sinner decides to change. There is more joy for that one sinner than for 99 good people who don’t need to change.
…. 9 And when she finds it, she will call her friends and neighbors and say to them, ‘Be happy with me because I have found the coin that I lost!’ 10 In the same way, it’s a happy time for the angels of God when one sinner decides to change.”
OBSERVATION:
Can you imagine the joy that we feel when we hear the good news that one whom we have prayed for, surrendered their hearts to Jesus? Now top that off with the party the angels have when they rejoice around the throne in heaven! It’s ‘Celebration Time’ on earth and in heaven when a lost person accepts the call of Jesus upon their life! To God be the glory!
APPLICATION:
Many parents pray for, and worry about their children who are opposed to surrendering their lives to the Lordship of Jesus Christ. There are many children who do the same for hardened parents. We all have friends that we love dearly and we are concerned about their eternal destination. But friends I want to challenge you and I to take our prayer responsibility way more serious for unsaved loved ones. Let me explain: Does it happen at your house, like it does at mine, that when we lose something we value, we call in all family members resident in our home, and we begin a search that sometimes result in emptying certain draws, moving furniture around, looking under lose objects, etc. You know similar to the two stories in our Scripture today? There’s usually a time of rejoicing when we all find the missing object – often exactly where we then remember placing it!!! Well, imagine if we were that concerned about our lost family and friends? Imagine if we called in the troops for regular prayer meetings to pray for God to soften their hearts to the point of surrendering to Him? Imagine if we asked God to melt our hearts and help us to live such godly lives in front of them that they would want the same thing (the same One) that made a difference in us? Now imagine your lost friend(s) accepting your invitation to join you at church one weekend, and the anticipation that would build in your soul as you look for them to walk the isle and accept your risen Lord! Can you see where a huge celebration might break out? Imagine for a moment that every time things quiet down a little in your rejoicing, you could still hear the angels around the throne singing, praising God and celebrating like you could never have imagined? Friends if there ever was a glorious worship service that was unplanned or organized into the order of service, that would be it! Let’s get busy praying for that brothers and sisters! It’s super important!
PRAYER:
Heavenly Father, as I stop and reflect back to the night that I surrendered my heart to You, I never knew about the celebration that was going on by the angels and those who played a part in my life up to that point. The times of encouragement from my parents; The lessons taught by Sunday School teachers; Words of encouragement from church leaders and elders of my community; VBS teachers who probably thought that they were going through the motion with us kids but not really having an impact. Now that we have many that we unknowingly mentor, teach or model for, I pray that we will seek the power of God to allow us to represent Him perfectly so that nothing is lost in the translation of something we might carelessly say or portray in our actions. Help us to be the eyes, feet and heart of Jesus in every way, knowing that others are following in our footsteps and they need to know You personally. Thanks be to God. AMEN!
FOOTNOTE:
There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’.  If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog could indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely to subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!

To Know That He Is God!

The prophets foretold the coming of John the Baptist, and the people followed his teachings. However, John knew that one was coming who was much greater than he was, so when questioned by his followers about the teachings of Jesus, John sent them to inquire. Our Scripture today is Jesus’ response to John’s followers. But how do we determine for ourselves who Jesus is?

Post Date:

Wednesday, 2017-07-12
SCRIPTURE

From:

Luke 7:22-23 (ERV)

Text:

22 Then he said to John’s followers, “Go tell John what you have seen and heard: The blind can see. The crippled can walk. People with leprosy are healed. The deaf can hear. The dead are brought back to life. And the Good News is being told to the poor.23 Great blessings belong to those who don’t have a problem accepting me.”
OBSERVATION:
The prophets foretold the coming of John the Baptist, and the people followed his teachings. However, John knew that one was coming who was much greater than he was, so when questioned by his followers about the teachings of Jesus, John sent them to inquire. Our Scripture today is Jesus’ response to John’s followers. But how do we determine for ourselves who Jesus is?
APPLICATION:
At some time in our lives we are faced with the question about who God is, and then there’s the importance of evaluating what our relationship is with this awesome God. John knew from Scripture that Jesus was coming and when he heard about all that Jesus was doing, he was anxious to know if this was really the Christ. I truly believe that almost everyone in the world has probably heard about Jesus, but like you and I, they have to find out for themselves whether He truly exists, and then decide what they will do with Him. I thought that Jesus’ response was outstanding! He didn’t send the disciples to study what the prophets had foretold, nor did He quote Scripture for them. He simply told them to share with John all they had seen and experienced. Friends, if I told you about a news report I saw of an earthquake in Africa, and another friend told you of a time they were visiting California and an earthquake came in the middle of the night, which story do you suppose might be more convincing and interesting? I believe we will all agree that for those of us that not only have accepted Jesus as Lord, but have truly developed a personal relationship with Him, we can speak of Him from the heart. John’s followers experienced the awesome power of Jesus, so can you even imagine how excited and convincing they were when they returned to John? Do you suppose that he doubted for a moment whether they were telling him the truth? Friends, I believe that God is teaching us in this Scripture today, that we can attend church every day of the week, and hear the very best of preachers, but until we have developed our own personal experience with Jesus Christ, our witnessing will consist more of storytelling, than it would of a personal experience. Each man, woman and child must decide for themselves who Jesus is to them; develop and maintain a personal relationship with Him; and then let the joy that comes from that relationship overflow to all those that we come into contact with. We all need Jesus. Once you have confirmed that personal relationship, reach out to a friend that also needs Him and share your story. That’s real, personal evangelism!
PRAYER:
Lord Jesus, thank You for loving us enough to sacrifice Yourself on the cross so that we might have the means of one day seeing You and the Father. Please forgive us for the times that we have kept that joy of knowing You bottled up inside. Lord, may our cups overflow so that the world will know that that You are very much alive, because they see evidence of it in us! We love You Lord, and again thank You for providing a way for us! AMEN!
FOOTNOTE:
There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’.  If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog could indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely to subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!

A Changed Heart

It was becoming quite a popular thing for people to go down to the river and be baptized by John the Baptist, and John quickly recognized that it was becoming quite the popular thing for folk to do in following the crowd. John felt an obligation to Jesus Christ to make sure that this was not becoming a popularity thing but rather one that followed the teachings of Jesus. We will explore how applicable this is to us today….

Post Date:

Thursday, 2017-06-29
SCRIPTURE

From:

Luke 3:7-9 (MSG)

Text:

7-9 When crowds of people came out for baptism because it was the popular thing to do, John exploded: “Brood of snakes! What do you think you’re doing slithering down here to the river? Do you think a little water on your snakeskins is going to deflect God’s judgment? It’s your life that must change, not your skin. And don’t think you can pull rank by claiming Abraham as ‘father.’ Being a child of Abraham is neither here nor there—children of Abraham are a dime a dozen. God can make children from stones if he wants. What counts is your life. Is it green and blossoming? Because if it’s deadwood, it goes on the fire.”
OBSERVATION:
It was becoming quite a popular thing for people to go down to the river and be baptized by John the Baptist, and John quickly recognized that it was becoming quite the popular thing for folk to do in following the crowd. John felt an obligation to Jesus Christ to make sure that this was not becoming a popularity thing but rather one that followed the teachings of Jesus. We will explore how applicable this is to us today….
APPLICATION:
As a very young child, my daughter saw a friend baptized, and for weeks afterwards she tried to convince her mom and I on why she should be baptized. I believe that there may be lots of younger people that want the attention of parents, Bible School teachers and  friends, or they may run to the pastor without fully understanding the purpose of baptism. There are others that are willing to take this step as a way to get mom, spouse, or perhaps a friend who had been witnessing to them, off their back. In our Scripture reading today we can see how John addressed this, and I’m sure we could follow his example on how to handle similar questions by others. However, we must feel comfortable sharing this in our own words. May I encourage you to click on the Scripture link above and read what Paul taught on this? The main emphasis is that the prospective candidate can clearly tell you how they were Spiritually saved, and also how Jesus has changed their way of living, because now they are about to show witness to the church at large and the world, that there has been a mega change in their life since inviting Jesus to be their Lord and Savior. The candidate must know clearly that baptism has no saving grace, but is scriptural because it demonstrates to the world an inward decision that you made at some point in your life. Friends, in following the commands of Jesus, I pray that you will demonstrate a full understanding of what He demands of you in His Word and not just follow the crowd as the popular thing to do, otherwise God may send another ‘John’ to rebuke you, like he did in this scripture. I encourage you to be brave in declaring to the world that you are a child of the King and that you don’t mind anyone knowing that. Being ashamed of the Lord here on earth might be reason for Jesus to disclaim you before His Father, according to His words in Scripture. If you haven’t surrendered your life to Jesus, then baptism is a mockery to the church and you are telling the world a lie. However, baptism is encouraged for those who have sincerely surrendered their heart and life to Jesus. 
PRAYER:
Lord Jesus, You know how much we love baptismal services, because as a church, we celebrate with the candidates the decisions that have been made, and the miraculous change that God has made in their lives! It re-enforces the necessity for the church and personal evangelism. It confirms Your work dear Lord, because only You could truly touch and change broken and sinful lives. May we continue to be about Your work oh Lord, and may You continue to touch the hearts of those that are in need of a Savior. We long to celebrate baptism often as a means of celebrating the wondrous works of our Lord. To You we give hearts filled with glory, honor and praise for all that You do in the center of our family, friends and loved ones. AMEN!
FOOTNOTE:
There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’.  If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog could indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely to subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!