Rewards For Seeking Righteousness and Purity

Many tend to surrender to failures that seem apparent in life, but I wonder how many of us could imitate David’s stand before God in declaring his purity and obedience to God and His commands. What if our rewards from God will be based on our efforts to remain faithful to God, pure in His sight and faultless in His commands? Please read the entire devotional and allow God to open your eyes to what He sees in you.

DATE POSTED Monday, 2022-09-12
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

SCRIPTURE FROM: 2 Samuel 22:21-25
TRANSLATION: The Voice (VOICE)

BIBLE TEXT: 21     The Eternal One rewarded me because I sought righteousness;
        He rewarded me because I kept my hands clean.
22     He rewarded me because I kept the ways of the Eternal
        and have not walked away from my True God in wickedness.
23     For all His laws were there before me,
        and I did not push His statutes away.
24     I made myself blameless before Him;
        I kept myself from guilt and shame.
25     That’s why the Eternal has rewarded me for seeking righteousness;
        He’s rewarded me because He sees I have remained pure.

APPLICATION: Standing before the righteous God of this universe and presenting yourself as innocent, pure and righteous is a bold step. For God knows: every word we speak, and the underlying thoughts while saying those words; every action we perform and the, often, ulterior motives we sometimes have for our actions; and every thought that we have, whether acted upon or not. Many of us have pretty much perfected the way that we present ourselves to the public, for we have a certain image that we want them to see in us, but God knows our heart, soul and mind. In fact, the closer we get to God, the more we become aware of how far we have drifted away from Him; how our attitudes suck; how many of our actions are probably frowned upon by God. But Satan is good at promoting these reasons right in our face whenever we even think we are righteous, innocent or pure in the sight of God. This is where we could then do like Jesus did on the mountain when tempted by Satan, we could quote 2 Corinthians 5:21 or Revelation 12:10, that assures us that we are righteous because of Jesus Christ, our Savior, who was perfect in every way. Friends, I don’t believe that we could ever be used wholeheartedly by God in this world until we have developed a deep relationship with God and acknowledge that it is only because of the righteousness of Jesus Christ that we could ever be righteous. So whenever you are questioned about your claim to righteousness, say what David taught us in verse 22 above: Praise God, I have not walked away from the true righteousness of God! I believe it is more important today than ever before that we determine in our hearts who we will follow for the rest of our days on earth, then seek the help of God to carry out our desire to serve Him faithfully throughout all eternity. As stated above, God knows all about us, but of equal importance is that others here on earth are watching. Your actions will help them decide their course of action for their lives. I pray that they will see enough of Jesus in you, and they will determine in their heart to surrender lordship of their life to Jesus and seek to serve Him until the end of time here.

BLESSING(S) NOTED: It is only because of Jesus that we could ever be considered righteous in the sight of God! Praise God for getting my attention and drawing me to His Son for forgiveness of my sin! Praise God, I’m redeemed, saved and considered righteous by Him!

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, You opened the doors of heaven for us, and we are forever thankful for that. We praise You for such awesome examples as David, to whom You portrayed Yourself powerfully. Like David, I pray that we will stop for a few minutes of our busy lives each day to commune with You, through intake from Bible study, and through output in prayer and communication with You. We have so much to praise You for Lord, but living in this world gives us urgency of need, encouragement, reassurance, wisdom and love from You each and every day. Lord, we want to be just like You in our speech, attitude, thought and actions, and we can only do that by fully acknowledging the source of our power and righteousness on a regular basis. We humble ourselves at Your feet, Lord, and we stand ready and willing to accept Your direction, so that the lost will see Jesus in action every time they make contact with 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 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. You may also visit me on Spotify and listen to Nuggets while you’re out and about. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

The Righteous Person

Way too often we go on the premise that because of whose we are, we will automatically do the right thing. However, I feel like the Psalmist is also reminding us that when we claim the name of Christ, we need to be committed to living like Jesus and submissive to His will in our lives. Like a ‘righteous’ person. Not sure how you are doing with this, but I need some time with the Lord to meditate on His Word. Join me, won’t you?

DATE POSTED Saturday, 2022-06-11
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

SCRIPTURE FROM: Psalm 37:30-31
TRANSLATION: GOD’S WORD Translation (GW)

BIBLE TEXT: 30 The mouth of the righteous person reflects on wisdom. His tongue speaks what is fair. 31 The teachings of his God are in his heart. His feet do not slip.

APPLICATION: I wonder if, in the eyes of a stranger, they would know who our Master is? Who or what drives us and influences our decisions. If they met us for the first time while we were stressed to the limit, would they recognize who is influencing our defiance, or our calm spirit, even in the midst of our ‘storm’? The Psalmist reminds us that our mouth will reflect the wisdom of the One we claim as our Master; our tongue will speak out of fairness if we claim the only true and fair God as our Lord and Savior. He goes on to give us the reason why these good things gloriously occur in our lives – because of the teachings of our God that we have allowed to indwell our hearts and control our very lives. David declared that when we allow such an influence in our lives, we stand on a solid footing and our lives will reflect the God in whom we place our faith and our trust. Friends, our lives will reflect the One in whom we place our faith and our trust. The decisions that we make and the words that we speak will be a reflection of the teachings that we have permitted to dwell deep within our hearts and souls. If we fill ourselves with evil and the things of this world, then we will make decisions based on those bad ideas and evil principles. If, however, we have filled our lives with the things of Christ, His words, His example and His character will influence the decisions we make and the words we speak. Please allow me to be the first to tell you today that the world is carefully watching you, and they are ready to jump on you with great judgment when they see you acting contrary to what they expect from a Christian. So I believe our challenge is, that when we react to a situation, we must ensure that our words and actions are aligned with Christ. This will convince the unsaved who may want to know the Source of our wisdom, our good judgment, our love for others, and our careful use of words, that the Holy Spirit resides inside of us and directs us to be good representatives of our Master. That’s the only way that we will fulfill His purpose, and help the unsaved to know Jesus. Preaching to them, or at them, will have minimal impact on them, compared to what they experience from our words and through our actions. i believe another way of saying what David shared is: Because of our sure footing in the Lord Jesus Christ, we stand firm in the will and ways of the One we serve. To see and hear us, is to see and hear Jesus! God being our helper in every situation of life!

PRAYER: Dearest Lord Jesus, please help us to be more like You in every phase of our life. We know that Your ways are perfect, and that we will only reflect the attitude and character of the One that we love, adore and serve. Please inspire the lives of my readers and myself, so that others will see Jesus in everything we do or say. It’s all about You dear Lord, Oh that we may be a living example of You in every day and in every way. 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. You may also visit me on Spotify and listen to Nuggets while you’re out and about. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

Waiting on God

David had such a relationship with God that it seemed natural for him to speak his heart to God. David realized how much he had messed up, but He also knew the One who is perfect, and he wanted desperately to be like Him. But he could not achieve perfection on his own, so he pleaded his case before the only Perfect One. Is that not us today?

DATE WRITTEN: Tuesday, 2022-05-10
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

Bible Reference: Psalm 25:4-5
Translation: The Voice (VOICE)

Bible Text: 
DEMONSTRATE Your ways, O Eternal One.
    Teach me to understand so I can follow.
EASE me down the path of Your truth.
    FEED me Your word
    because You are the True God who has saved me.
    I wait all day long, hoping, trusting in You.

APPLICATION: We could learn a lot from David, for we are so quick to beat up on ourselves, or seek help from every other source, before finally conceding to the One who could lead us to all truth, knowledge and understanding so that we could obediently follow the ways of our Lord and His written Word. There are a few keywords in these two verses that I wanted to expand on, hoping that we might better understand the heart of this humble servant of God. David knew that there was only One who could possibly help him, so he pleaded before his God:

  • Demonstrate – Lord, please help me to understand by showing me through real-life examples;
  • Teach – Assume that I know nothing and simply open up my mind to a full understanding of what You would have me to do, oh Lord;
  • Ease – Understanding my weaknesses and inadequacies, please go easy on me as I am slow to learn, but know that I sincerely desire to know more about Your ways and Your Word;
  • Feed – Pour knowledge and understanding into me like one would poor water into the beak of a very thirsty bird. Fill me with Your Word so that I may constantly live in obedience to all that You desire of me;
  • Wait – I am willing to wait for as long as You desire, Lord, for following Your will is just that important to me.

When all else fails, make it known to God that there is nothing more important than to obey His Word, and honor Him in everything that you do and say. Allow Him to work miraculously through you to reach the lost in your circle of influence for His glory. God referred to David as a man after His own heart, so I believe that as we apply this prayer of David’s in all sincerity, and follow the Master in all that He demands of us, we will begin to reflect the true image of God in our lives, so that we may become effect witnesses for Him. May this be your heart’s cry today precious friends, for God loves You more than you could ever comprehend!

PRAYER: Dear Lord, we want to be just like You! However we have so much that separates us in that quest. There is so much that we need to surrender to You so that we might be filled with Your Holy Spirit completely and therefore be led in total surrender to Your will and Your way for us. Lord, this wicked world needs to see more of You in those who claim You as Lord. Begin with me Lord. Allow me to be so filled with Your grace and Your mercy that those in my realm of influence might desire to know the One who influences my life every day. Thank You for the lessons taught through Your servant David, May all who read this blog be encouraged to follow in the steps of David – towards being recognized by You as a person after Your own heart. May You be glorified in and through Your precious children today, is my prayer, in deepest humility, AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog at https://NuggetsFromGodsWord.org 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 or listening to this devotional, please go to 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. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and see all of my posts, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

Respect The Place Where God Resides

From time too time, we invite God to live among us in our city, and particularly in our church. But what preparations have we made for our most Holy God to reside within us? He will not stay where sin abounds, so do you suppose He would make residence in our hearts, our churches or our cities? Let’s give this some thought today as we meditate on the Word of God.

DATE WRITTEN: Tuesday, 2021-07-13
WRITTEN AT: Casa Grande, AZ

SCRIPTURE FROM: Numbers 35:34
TRANSLATION: The Voice (VOICE)

BIBLE TEXT: 34 You won’t pollute the land where you live and where I also have chosen to dwell among you. I, the Eternal One, dwell among the Israelites.

APPLICATION: As things occur in our lives that God always knows about, there are times that He has to help us understand why they are happening; or perhaps how we should handle the situation; or we may even be given wisdom to know that with God, all things are possible. It was no different with the Israelites, God’s very own people. In our Scripture, God was dealing with the subject of murder. And although He had already told Moses how displeased He was with the act, He went on to warn Moses, as I believe He is doing with us, that He will not reside where sin abounds. Please don’t question God’s unlimited intelligence by saying that you don’t know what He’s talking about. Yes, you may have never murdered another human being, but when He said that He wants us too keep His place of abode righteous, I believe He included this incidence in the Bible so that we could also take note of His strong distain against sin. You see, many of us reading this Scripture and this devotional may have accepted Jesus as our personal Savior. While I’m sure that makes God overjoyed at receiving one more of His children into His kingdom, I believe He becomes just as angry with us as He did with the Israelites, for we go to some of the same places where we used to go; we join in on some of the same dirty conversations that we used to; and we create havoc between God’s children that leads to disharmony, and that is strongly against God’s will and purpose. It’s like we leave God at the altar of the church, and we go out and return to our sinful ways. The Word of God says that the Holy Spirit indwells the life of the believer. So when you visit those old places, you are exposing God to the sin that goes on there. When you curse another child of His or share evil and conniving things that will hurt another child, you are exposing God to your old, evil mindset. Also, having worked in leadership of the local church for many years, it is frightening to know the evil things that go on among God’s people. We regularly invite God to join with us in His place of worship as we lift up holy hands and sing His praises, but dear friends, can we truly expect Him to honor our requests when there is so much jealousy, envy, strife and sin of almost every nature occurring right inside of our four walls? We ask for His guidance in helping us save our businesses, yet we steal, cheat and act greedy towards even the poor who enter our doors. Will God consider entering there to bless our businesses? I believe by now you are getting the idea of where the Holy Spirit led me as I meditated on this Scripture today. If we invite Him to live within us, then we must be prepared to cleanse our sanctuary so that He may indwell us in a setting of righteousness that is free from sin. If we invite God to be present with us in our church services, we must cleanse ourselves of all sin, so that God may enter the Holy of Holies in a sin-free environment that is especially designed for a righteous God. Friends, I know that we are not perfect, but please be reminded that God is. He can cleanse us for all our unrighteousness and make us white as snow, so I know that He can give us wisdom to also keep ourselves holy. When our churches are filled with God’s holy people, then it will be suitable for God to live there and to meet with us as we seek His face. Sin is unacceptable to our righteous God, whether it be murder, or what we may often consider to be minor sins like: stealing, gossip, lying, hatred, etc. Only the blood of Jesus can wash us clean and make us holy, just as the Master is. Seek Him today while He may be found, Precious child of the King!

BLESSING(S) NOTED: God resides where there is no sin. Oh that He will comfort and rest in us, and in the environment where we find ourselves!

PRAYER: Dear Lord, please forgive us for treating Your grace so lightly. Through peer pressure and often for popularity purposes, we tend to accept You as Lord of our lives. These are often poor excuses for such an important decision. Lord, speak to us again through Your Holy Spirit, so that our decisions may be genuine. We need You every hour of every day, to help us stay on track and to live righteous lives, even as You are righteous. The unsaved will be disgusted over hypocrisy, Lord please help us to present ourselves as genuine children of the King so that they may see Jesus, so that they may believe, so that they may surrender their lives to Your lordship. 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. You may also visit me on Spotify and listen to Nuggets while you’re out and about. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

Don’t Cheat

I believe that God blessed me with the best wife, when we made our vows before Him on November 7, 1975. I believe that God has also blessed our work for Him over the years, and in the daughter He blessed us with. But little did I realize the full extent of this Scripture, until today. Please know that I am not here to criticize anyone whose marriage fell by the wayside, but I thought it important that we see what the Word of God says about this important aspect of two lives becoming one in holy matrimony.

DATE WRITTEN: Thursday, 2020-12-31
WRITTEN AT: Paul B Johnson State Park, Hattiesburg, MS

BIBLE REFERENCE: Malachi 2:13-16
TRANSLATION: The Message (MSG)

BIBLE TEXT: 13-15 And here’s a second offense: You fill the place of worship with your whining and sniveling because you don’t get what you want from God. Do you know why? Simple. Because God was there as a witness when you spoke your marriage vows to your young bride, and now you’ve broken those vows, broken the faith-bond with your vowed companion, your covenant wife. God, not you, made marriage. His Spirit inhabits even the smallest details of marriage. And what does he want from marriage? Children of God, that’s what. So guard the spirit of marriage within you. Don’t cheat on your spouse.
16 “I hate divorce,” says the God of Israel. God-of-the-Angel-Armies says, “I hate the violent dismembering of the ‘one flesh’ of marriage.” So watch yourselves. Don’t let your guard down. Don’t cheat.

OBSERVATION: I believe that God blessed me with the best wife, when we made our vows before Him on November 7, 1975. I believe that God has also blessed our work for Him over the years, and in the daughter He blessed us with. But little did I realize the full extent of this Scripture, until today. Please know that I am not here to criticize anyone whose marriage fell by the wayside, but I thought it important that we see what the Word of God says about this important aspect of two lives becoming one in holy matrimony.

APPLICATION: I don’t believe that things have changed very much at all. Malachi dealt with the whining and complaining of the Jews on why they were feeling so empty in their worship to God. Malachi, in speaking the word of the Lord, immediately recognized that something was blocking the communion of the saints with their Father as they worshipped. Isn’t it interesting how still today we could go through the motions, but yet feel very empty inside, as if we never truly worshipped? You see, we might take off the dirty filthy clothes worn all week and we may put on our very best clothes, but will that truly bring us close to God? We might attend the biggest and best rated church in town, or we may decide to visit a small, quaint, secluded church that claims to have the best pastor, but in either case we could very easily leave as empty as when we walked in, even though we were convinced that God was just not there. We may decide to get involved at our church – singing in the choir, helping in a Bible Study class, or working with the children, but yet we might drown in our sorrows, feeling like we have not connected with God. Obviously we must know that God never reneges on His Word. He said that He would be with us through every stage of life and be there to accept us as we leave this world, so what might trick our brains into thinking that we have a disconnect between us and God? Friends, God made it clear in His word that He will not reside where sin is, and He will not approve of sin in any form, for He has never sinned, nor will He ever sin, seeing that He is the righteous Son of God. We may immediately think of sin, like we see in our neighbor or our friend, but in our example today of how sin could separate us from God, Malachi dealt with divorce – breaking the covenant agreement made between a man and a woman in the presence of the Almighty. Friends, our fleshly minds will tell us that everything we did was legal, and furthermore we even had a Notary pronounce our wedding vows. I’m sure that makes you feel that your actions are therefore more legitimate because of that, but because we are talking about a right relationship with God, I believe it behooves us to think about how our relationship was injured when we totally ignored the covenant we made with Him and our spouse. Why do you suppose this is important to God? He became a party to our vows and He blessed our union with our spouse, so that we could produce godly children. So through divorce, we not only broke our covenant agreement with God, but we also made it impossible to give Him what He desired from us – godly children. Without looking down my nose in the slightest at any divorcee, let me just say that God’s Word is exactly that – it’s His Word, and not mine. I am merely the messenger reminding you of what the Word has to say about everything – today being about marriage. Please read the Word of God and endeavor to live by it, God being your helper. Take your petitions before God and seek His forgiveness, guidance and His perfect will for your life.

PRAYER: Precious Lord, thank You for making us in Your own image. We were placed here on earth being weak and fully susceptible to sin. You are the only One without sin, and You are the only One to whom we must give an account of what we have done with all You have blessed us with. Unfortunately we have messed up a lot, and it is so challenging to approach Your throne in such an ugly, sinful manner. But praise be to the Father, You are the only One capable of forgiving us of our sin and making us right with You and the Father. Please renew within us a right spirit and a righteous and holy respect for You in every phase of life – one that You could use to bless others who need an example to follow. Oh that You may be lifted up, magnified and praised today because someone may have realized their need for a Savior. AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog at https://NuggetsFromGodsWord.org 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 or listening to this devotional, please go to 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. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and see all of my posts, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

Anger Does Not Promote Righteousness

In the Bible there is a challenge that states ‘the innocent should throw the first stone at a man being charged by them.’ That is a reminder today as we look at these verses, for we all become angry at some point in our lives, and we act in ways that later cause us shame. Anger is an emotion built into humans by God, but like with anything else in life, how we use that emotion makes all the difference in the world. Join me as we meditate on this as part of our devotional today.

DATE WRITTEN: Tuesday, 2020-10-20
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

BIBLE REFERENCE: James 1:19-20
TRANSLATION: Amplified Bible, Classic Edition (AMPC)

BIBLE TEXT: 19 Understand [this], my beloved brethren. Let every man be quick to hear [a ready listener], slow to speak, slow to take offense and to get angry. 20 For man’s anger does not promote the righteousness God [wishes and requires].

OBSERVATION: In the Bible there is a challenge that states ‘the innocent should throw the first stone at a man being charged by them.’ That is a reminder today as we look at these verses, for we all become angry at some point in our lives, and we act in ways that later cause us shame. Anger is an emotion built into humans by God, but like with anything else in life, how we use that emotion makes all the difference in the world. Join me as we meditate on this as part of our devotional today.

APPLICATION: As we begin the study, let me encourage you to stop and ponder the times that you’ve seen others react to something in a state of rage, or anger. More than lightly it was ugly, and you probably wished several times that you would never embarrass yourself quite like that, correct? Why? Because it often brings out the worse in us, regardless of who we are, or what commitments we have made to God, to therapists, to family or to friends, that we would always try to deter anger before it controls us. What has been some of the results of anger? Fights, murder, not speaking to that person again, finding it impossible to show love towards that person, etc. So why do you think it was so important for God to have Paul share this word with us about this awful reaction? I believe that God draws us unto Himself, so that we might commune with Him; so that we might learn from His Word with our minds centered on Christ; so that we might imitate His reactions to life as recorded in His Word. Let’s remember, we were created in His image so that we might become like Him through faithful obedience to His teachings and commandments. Things that enable a close relationship is best for the believer. However, things that distract from our new desire to follow Jesus and be like Him, are often directed by the evil one so that our fellowship with God might be broken, or at least seriously fractured. Furthermore, God intended for us to show the world proof of who we believe in. When we do that, the world is comparing us to their image and not their expectations of a holy God. Although it is recorded of a time that Jesus became angry, it was considered a righteous anger, as He could not believe the neglect and disrespect as He saw what the merchants were doing in the temple courtyard. In our Scripture today we are told that this awful emotion does not promote the righteousness of God. So if we are trying to live a life that looks like our Master and Lord, we truly mess up when we allow anger to show its ugly head in our actions. I love how the Word tells us to accomplish a character that will promote our Lord: Be quick to listen – a ready listener. So many family and friends just need someone that they could talk to, without judging them or becoming angry at them; Slow to speak – We have two ears and just one mouth. It would make sense that we should listen twice as much as we speak. Waiting for the other person to have their full say on something might have a drastic influence on what we say in response to them; Slow to take offense – When someone is giving their opinion, it is exactly that. It may not be the same opinion to which we uphold, but they are sharing their mind with us. Take no offense to that, because everyone is entitled to their own opinion; Slow to become angry – Knowing that God knows the heart and mind of each person, should satisfy us. He will deal with that person in all righteousness – even in their unrighteous actions. It’s not our job to angrily react to what they believe. Remember, our job is to remain righteous, and promote the righteousness of God! The ‘other’ person may not even be a Christian. Will they see the righteousness of God in our reaction, or will they see that we are just as bad as the rest of their worldly friends?

PRAYER: Dear Lord, this is a topic that most of Your dear children battle with. I am definitely not exempt from showing my anger, and I apologize for failing to represent You well in those times. Unless the unsaved see the righteousness of God in our actions and reactions, they may struggle to see Jesus here on earth. Please Lord, promote within us a righteous mind, and cleanse our hearts so that our lips will only spew out the righteousness of our heart. May others be encouraged to accept You as Lord, because they had an encounter with us. Oh that You may be glorified today, even through Your saints on earth who strive to live like You taught us to. AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog at https://NuggetsFromGodsWord.org 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 or listening to this devotional, please go to 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. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and see all of my posts, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

A ‘Truly’ Righteous Man

I know that New Testament believers will try to rightfully steer us towards aligning ourselves with the New Covenant, Jesus Christ, but after reading this Scripture in Ezekiel, I still asked myself the question: But what is it that constitutes a righteous man? Well, it still all boils down to being the man who is faithfully obedient to the Word of God and who follows the practice and commands of Jesus Christ. Let’s look closer at this today, and ask God to direct our paths so that others may see the righteousness of our Lord and Savior in us.

DATE WRITTEN: Saturday, 2020-10-10
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

BIBLE REFERENCE: Ezekiel 18:5–9
TRANSLATION: Amplified Bible, Classic Edition (AMPC)

BIBLE TEXT: But if a man is [uncompromisingly] righteous (upright and in right standing with God) and does what is lawful and right, And has not eaten [at the idol shrines] upon the mountains nor lifted up his eyes to the idols of the house of Israel, has not defiled his neighbor’s wife nor come near to a woman in her time of impurity, And has not wronged anyone but has restored to the debtor his pledge, has taken nothing by robbery but has given his bread to the hungry and has covered the naked with a garment, Who does not charge interest or percentage of increase on what he lends [in compassion], who withholds his hand from iniquity, who executes true justice between man and man, Who has walked in My statutes and kept My ordinances, to deal justly; [then] he is [truly] righteous; he shall surely live, says the Lord God.[Ezek. 20:11; Amos 5:4.]

OBSERVATION: I know that New Testament believers will try to rightfully steer us towards aligning ourselves with the New Covenant, Jesus Christ, but after reading this Scripture in Ezekiel, I still asked myself the question: But what is it that constitutes a righteous man? Well, it still all boils down to being the man who is faithfully obedient to the Word of God and who follows the practice and commands of Jesus Christ. Let’s look closer at this today, and ask God to direct our paths so that others may see the righteousness of our Lord and Savior in us.

APPLICATION: God gave the writers of the Bible His Godly influence, and He ordained them to pen the Words that God wanted His people to understand and follow until the day He calls us home to glory. So although I know that these words were written for the Israelites at a time that it was difficult to discern a righteous person whom the unsaved might relate to a life after God’s own heart, yet I also believe that these words by the prophet Ezekiel were penned with us in mind as well. For those who have been active in church life, you have probably seen just as I have, where people who struggle with a bad period in their life, might enter the back doors of the church, walk forward for salvation, and possibly even baptism, only to disappear from the church scene within a very short time, never to be heard of again. Were they saved? Only God knows that for sure. But are they living a righteous life that will influence an unbeliever? Not very lightly. There is a simple analogy given about people that follow this pattern: A pastor went to visit one such parishioner who had not attended church in a while. They sat down by the fire and the conversation was very strained. The pastor eased up by the fire and moved a vital piece of charcoal away from the fire and placed it aside. Soon the glow diminished in that piece of charcoal, and eventually it went cold. The unfaithful parishioner had no reason to question the pastor why he did such a thing, because the Holy Spirit immediately helped the man to understand that the analogy precisely patterned his life, for his spiritual fire had gone out. So he promised the pastor that he would see him at the next Sunday service! Friends, that part of the story is very revealing, but don’t you also know that the glow in several of the remaining chunks of charcoal also dimmed, because they lacked the warmth and encouragement of the missing piece? We who are called by His name, are vitally connected to others who are also called by His name. When our glow diminishes, not only are the unbelievers affected because they see no righteous men among the church, but we also leave a dampness on the remaining believers that we were helping. When we accept Jesus as Lord, it’s because we want to have Him change us from the inside out, so that we might look, sound and imitate Him in this dark and sinful world. You see, our reward is Heaven. While still here on earth, we serve a vital and important role – to convince those in our circle of influence that they also need Jesus, so that together we may walk through heaven’s portals one day and live forever with the King of all kings and Lord of all lords. So let me encourage you to help me live righteously while still here on earth, while I try and do the same for you, God being our Helper, Guide and Deliverer until He is ready to have us join Him in glory!

PRAYER: Faithful Father, Jesus my Lord, thank You for showing Yourself righteous and being an example for us to follow. Thank You for the saints You sent on ahead to teach us Your values and show us Your ways. If we are truly Your children, then we must be righteous just like You are. Thank You for this Scripture today that gives us great truth into the values that make a man look righteous. Please fill us with so much of Yourself, that these values will bubble forth from us each and every day. May the righteous be encouraged and warmed by our righteousness, and may the unsaved be convinced by seeing You lived out in us. Please touch the lives of those who will read this devotional today, oh Lord. May we all strive for Your control to bring forth righteousness in us. AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog at https://NuggetsFromGodsWord.org 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 or listening to this devotional, please go to 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. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and see all of my posts, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

Waiting, Hoping and Trusting in God

David had such a relationship with God that it seemed natural for him to speak his heart to God. David realized how much he had messed up, but He also knew where perfection came from, so he pleaded his case of need before the only Perfect One. Is that not us today?

DATE WRITTEN: Saturday, 2020-05-09
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

Bible Reference: Psalm 25:4-5
Translation: The Voice (VOICE)

Bible Text: 
DEMONSTRATE Your ways, O Eternal One.
    Teach me to understand so I can follow.
EASE me down the path of Your truth.
    FEED me Your word
    because You are the True God who has saved me.
    I wait all day long, hoping, trusting in You.

OBSERVATION: David had such a relationship with God that it seemed natural for him to speak his heart to God. David realized how much he had messed up, but He also knew where perfection came from, so he pleaded his case of need before the only Perfect One. Is that not us today?

APPLICATION: We could learn a lot from David, for we are so quick to beat up on ourselves, or seek help from every other source, before finally conceding to the One who could lead us to all truth, knowledge and understanding so that we could obediently follow the ways of our Lord and His written Word. There are a few keywords in these two verses that I wanted to expand on, that I believe will help us get to the bottom of David’s plea before his God:

Demonstrate – Lord, please help me to understand by showing me through real-life examples;

Teach – Assume that I know nothing and simply open up my mind to a full understanding of what You would have me to do, oh Lord;

Ease – Please go easy on me as I am slow to learn, but sincerely desire to know more about Your ways and Your Word;

Feed – Pour knowledge and understanding into me like we might poor water into the beak of a very thirsty bird. Fill me with Your Word so that I may constantly live in obedience to all that You desire of me;

Wait – I am willing to wait all day long to hear from You Lord, for following Your will is just that important to me.

When all is said and done, make it known to God that there is nothing more important in your life than to obey His Word. Honor Him in everything that you do and say, and  allow Him to work miraculously through you to reach the lost in your circle of influence for His glory. God referred to David as a man after His own heart, so I believe that as we follow this prayer of David’s in all sincerity, we would also show our desire to have a heart more like that of Christ. May it be so even today dear friends!

PRAYER: Dear Lord, we want to be just like You! However we have so much that separates us in that quest. There is so much that we need to surrender to You so that we might be filled with Your Holy Spirit completely and therefore be led in total surrender to Your will and Your way for us. Lord, this wicked world needs to see more of You in those who claim You as Lord. Begin with me Lord. Allow me to be so filled with Your grace and Your mercy that those in my realm of influence might desire to know the One who influences my life every day. Thank You for the lesson taught through Your servant David, may all who read this blog be encouraged to follow in the steps of David – towards being recognized by You as a person after Your own heart. May You be glorified in and through Your precious children today, is my prayer in deepest humility, AMEN!

Lord, In Spite of Your Love, We Have….

I believe that one of the hardest prayers we could conjure up, is one where we acknowledge that we have messed up. This could easily arise, for we not only disobey God and turn from His way, in spite of His love, but this may, unfortunately arise in scenarios with parents, spouses, siblings, friends or even coworkers. Imagine, they may think the world of us, but yet we allow influences from sources outside of our relationship to steer us in directions contrary to what we promised, or what we believe, or what we aim to do. As we meditate on this Scripture today, let’s try to be conscious of the exterior things that distract us in our walk/commitment.

DATE WRITTEN: Saturday, 2020-03-28
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

BIBLE REFERENCE: Ezra 9:10-12
TRANSLATION: The Voice (VOICE)

BIBLE TEXT: 10 But in spite of Your love, we have abandoned Your commands, and we have no excuse. 11 You warned us through Your servants, the prophets, that the land of Canaan was polluted with pagans, that their evil actions had removed anything pure or good there, even filling up the land from end to end with horrible practices. 12 You warned us not to marry our children to theirs, to seek treaties with them, or to covet their prosperity so that we would remain strong as a nation and as individuals, eating good foods from the earth and leaving that earth to Your children always.

OBSERVATION: I believe that one of the hardest prayers we could conjure up, is one where we acknowledge that we have messed up. This could easily arise, for we not only disobey God and turn from His way, in spite of His love, but this may, unfortunately arise in scenarios with parents, spouses, siblings, friends or even coworkers. Imagine, they may think the world of us, but yet we allow influences from sources outside of our relationship to steer us in directions contrary to what we promised, or what we believe, or what we aim to do. As we meditate on this Scripture today, let’s try to be conscious of the exterior things that distract us in our walk/commitment.

APPLICATION: At first reading one might do a double-take on the verse where a recommendation was made to Ezra that the people divorce their wives taken from the community of non-Jews. But there is a strong message here for even us today. When God saves us, He draws us to Himself to live like He taught us through His Son; He expects us to obey His commands; and He directs us to use our mission field to win the lost for the kingdom. Inside the four walls of our church, I believe we all will agree that this would be a fairly easy task. Inside our families, and perhaps inside our group of friends who respect us – this may also be fairly easy; but to walk up to a stranger, or a new neighbor, this becomes increasingly more challenging. So don’t we tend to give in just a little so we could better fit in, with hopes of possibly getting through to them at some point? What about the case of our marriages? Can you imagine how old-fashioned our parents were to ask us to marry someone from our church, or our neighborhood, or who believed like us, or practiced the same things that we do? It is obvious that the Israelites thought just like us – they came and settled in with a people who had beautiful ladies that seem to be just like them, so why not marry them? It happened then, and it still happens today dear friends. But in our Scripture today, Ezra acknowledged before God that this whole mindset had truly put the Jewish people in a position far enough from their God, and they are left with no-one who cares about them, protects them and desires a pure relationship with them. I believe there are a few takeaways for us to meditate on today: 1). When God saved us by His grace and mercy, He set us apart as holy and dedicated to the Creator of this universe. As we mingle, let us be careful to represent the One who ‘saved’ us from the drudgery of sin, and not draw so close to sin that we would be drawn back into it again; 2). If, through God’s help, we succeed in staying dedicated to Him, but see a fellow believer being pulled away, let us seek the heart of God on their behalf, much like Ezra did for His people. This would be our only hope of our fellow believers if we were the ones being pulled away; 3). Be willing to stand up and ask God’s forgiveness for our actions first. Set the example and pray that others will follow; and 4) Be willing to love on all that you come into contact with, but never forget the love of our Savior for us, so that we may stay strong in our faith and obedient to His will. Friends, we are living in the last days before Jesus returns to take us home. Let us always seek to live like children who are ready for His return, and may that urgency create within us an ongoing desire to see those around us humble themselves, pray, and turn from their wicked ways in preparation for His return. I pray that our current worldwide, dire situation might create a sense of urgency to many, and that God’s people will stand ready to help them seek the face of Jesus for His expected return. Please read my Footnote for further instructions, dear friends, especially the link ‘To Know Jesus’, or contact me to pray with you.

PRAYER: Thank You dear Lord for leading me into this Scripture today. Just as Ezra recognized that in spite of Your love, his people had strayed, I’m afraid that the same situation has repeated itself today. For folk all around me are satisfied to do what pleases a neighbor without regard for what You have taught us. Please forgive us and never stop loving us dear Lord. We have family and dear friends who still need to meet You for the very first time. You have shown us through our current situation that the time is nearing for Your return. May we all be found expecting and ready for the day You call us home to glory. Oh what a day that will be, when my Jesus I shall see! I really want my family and friends to be just as anxious and prepared for that day, Lord. Please tender their heart and guide me, or some other servant, to help lead them into a right decision before it’s too late. AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog at https://NuggetsFromGodsWord.org 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 or listening to this devotional, please go to 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. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and see all of my posts, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

The Reason I Live

Thursday, 2020-01-23

Bible Reference: Philippians 1:20-24
Translation: The Living Bible (TLB)

Bible Text: 20 For I live in eager expectation and hope that I will never do anything that will cause me to be ashamed of myself but that I will always be ready to speak out boldly for Christ while I am going through all these trials here, just as I have in the past; and that I will always be an honor to Christ, whether I live or whether I must die. 21 For to me, living means opportunities for Christ, and dying—well, that’s better yet! 22 But if living will give me more opportunities to win people to Christ, then I really don’t know which is better, to live or die! 23 Sometimes I want to live, and at other times I don’t, for I long to go and be with Christ. How much happier for me than being here! 24 But the fact is that I can be of more help to you by staying!

OBSERVATION: We are often so sad over the death of a loved one, and rightfully so, for we worry about how we will survive everyday life without them. But in our Scripture today, Paul directs us to consider our value while alive and also after we move from this life to the next. Paul found it very challenging to determine if his life was more valuable here on earth, or with His heavenly Father. As we meditate, let’s not be concerned about what we could get out of either side of heaven, but rather, what we might give – for the sake of the Master.

APPLICATION: Of special note regarding this scripture: Paul is in prison at the time of this writing! So if Paul has the fortitude and determination to live so that He could do more of the Master’s work, even from within four prison walls, how much more those of us who are ‘free’ should be striving to do the Master’s work? Friends, we whine and we complain about so much, but do we should really have the heart of Jesus, or of Paul, in wanting to see as many won to the Lord as possible? In the above scripture, I bolded a few sentences that, I believe, is worthy of note:
* Living means opportunities for Christ – it is only while we have breath in our bodies that we can be witnesses for the Lord, or care about sinners. Let’s not wait any longer friends, we’re on the winning side and it is our privilege, our honor, and our responsibility to share the Good News of our Savior and Lord;
* Living will give more opportunities to win people to Christ – Often we will find that it’s the threat of impending death that gives us incentive to share the love of Christ that lives inside of us. Please allow me to awaken  you to the fact that we have no assurances about the next minute. The moment of opportunity is the present. Please share the love of Christ who lives inside of you with all that you care about and/or come into contact with today!
* I can be of more help to you by staying – Only Jesus Christ has power beyond the grave. He is allowing us to remain here on earth so that we can glorify Him and spread the Good News about the Savior who loved us enough to die for us. In a nutshell friend, this is our mission!
Friends, we remain on this earth to be shining examples of our Lord Jesus Christ.  It’s not about politics, gossip, sports, the lotto or any other purpose, so use every opportunity with everyone you know, that the reason you live is to represent Jesus, and try to evangelize the lost, before it is eternally too late.

PRAYER: The reason that I live is …….. Lord, as we complete that sentence today in humility and prayer before You, I ask that You will take those completed sentences and correct any misgivings about our mission, compared to the one You have assigned to us. I am pretty convinced that our mission is similar in nature to what Paul shared with the Philippians, because throughout Your Word we are told the importance of surrendering our lives to You, so that we, in turn, may be a blessing to others and convince them of their need for our Savior. Please work on us today and guide us to do Your perfect will, for this is my sincere and humble plea. It’s in Your beautiful and bountiful name that I ask all this, dear Jesus, AMEN!