Daily Devotions from The Word Of God… From the heart of Ed Algreen

Archive for the ‘Stand Firm’ Category

Stand Your Ground

Thursday, 2016-07-28

Scripture

Bible Reference: Revelation 13:9-10

Bible Text:   9-10 Are you listening to this? They’ve made their bed; now they must lie in it. Anyone marked for prison goes straight to prison; anyone pulling a sword goes down by the sword. Meanwhile, God’s holy people passionately and faithfully stand their ground.

Bible Translation: The Message (MSG)

My Take

If I was to compare a person to a Chameleon lizard, I would probably say that it’s because the individual fits into any crowd as if he belonged there. The unfortunate part is that I might automatically assume that they are of the same attitude and character as the crowd also. Often we might fit into this lifestyle, for fear of indifference that may lead to persecution, abuse or even death. Our scripture is reminding us that we are to be passionate about our faith, to make sure that we stand true to God in good times, around good people, and in tough times while around people who would just as soon see us disappear. Friends, if we are unable to remain faithful to our God in both of the above scenarios, then we should question the depth of our relationship with God. We often teach around our churches that our mission field really begins the moment we walk outside the doors of the church building. The challenge for each child of God is to be as bold about our stand for Christ outside of the church as we are inside. Are you able to take a stand for Christ and be transparent about your faith, no matter what audience you are surrounded by? While I believe that God wants us to identify with our unsaved family and friends, I also believe that He wants them to truly identify us for who we claim to be, whether in the presence of like saints, or in a crowd that opposes the very thought of Christ. Where do you stand friend? Is it obvious to the world whose you are? Is your life a testimony of the Lord Jesus Christ whether you open your mouth or not? Are you ready to take a stand for the Lord? If your friends know that you are married, why would you not want them to meet the One that you have surrender the reins of your life to? Take a stand friend!

Prayer

Lord, if our football teams caved in to opposition as easily as we do, they would never win a football game. Yet we expect to win the lost for the kingdom while still living like the world. Please forgive us for belittling the sovereignty and deity of our Savior. For a life totally dedicated to You, it should be very obvious to the world whose we are, and for whom we will take a stand. May we never be found in contempt. Lord may You be glorified in us today, even while we may be in the presence of friends who have not accepted You yet. I ask these things in the name of Jesus, my Savior and Lord, AMEN!

Footnote

If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. 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 www.nuggetsfromgodsword.org 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!

Why do you still trust God?

May I encourage you to get your spiritual ‘Nuggets’ to start your day off right? Pretty amazing that our awesome God would consider feeding even us with His Word! May I encourage you to read the whole devotional, and look for a blessing, friend!………

Today’s Bible Reference: Job 2:7–10
Today’s Bible Text: So Satan went out from the presence of the Lord and struck Job with a terrible case of boils from head to foot. Then Job took a broken piece of pottery to scrape himself and sat among the ashes. His wife said to him, “Are you still trying to be godly when God has done all this to you? Curse him and die.” But he replied, “You talk like some heathen woman. What? Shall we receive only pleasant things from the hand of God and never anything unpleasant?” So in all this Job said nothing wrong.
The Bible Translation: The Living Bible (TLB)

My Take Away: In this life we have choices. We can sit in our corner and cry “Why Me, Lord?” all day long, and we may even write a song about it like the one I linked to. However, when one is totally surrendered to Jesus Christ, and as long as we remain here on this earth, we know that there will be times that God will shower His blessings on us and answer our prayers just like we might expect, and as outsiders looking in might expect from our awesome God. But what if God needs our experience to teach someone close to us something about His grace, or His mercy, or even His stand for perfect, unadulterated holy living? Job was introduced by God to Satan as the finest man on earth, and a man of integrity who truly trusted God, yet God allowed Job to be tested and tried beyond, what appears to be, anything a man could truly bear. But we are still learning lessons from this man even today. Friends, I believe that when we place our faith and trust in God, we have to be prepared to stand firm in that commitment with the faith that proves that we are willing to go beyond the good times and the great answers to prayer that we expect, but we need to also be aware that as God, He might sometimes answer our prayers for our best and His glory, in ways that we didn’t ask for or expect. Think about this friend, why would we ask God about a need, if we think that He only has the same answers as we do? We ask because we want His divine direction and we want responses that will bring glory to God. What has God benefited if answers to our prayers serve to lift us up only? I know of friends who have traveled hundreds of miles to be prayed over by certain evangelists. Who has been getting the praise in that ministry? Friends, my God is everywhere and He hears the heart-cry of all of His precious kids. In His desire to reach more of His rebellious kids, He may have to test us and allow us to respond to His testing in ways that might prove to the world who our Master truly is. Are you sincere in your relationship with God? Will you uphold the test of fire in your life and still claim Jesus as your Lord? Our military has very stringent punishment for desertion by soldiers, May I encourage you to stand firm in your faith and never face desertion charges by God?

Prayer: Father, way too often pride steps in the way for us and we cave in to popular belief, or worldly expectations. It is so easy to brag on You when everything is ‘going our way’, and when our success is what the world is expecting. I believe that all of this is true when we keep You included, because Lord Jesus, we simply don’t have all of the answers. Lord, we want to be used of You in ways that will help unbelievers to see Jesus. I’m sure that this will not always be pleasant for us, just as we saw with Job, but Lord I pray that we will be constantly reminded of the unpleasant action You took on the cross at Calvary so that we might have eternal life in glory with You. It is so important that we maintain our faith and trust in You Lord. Please touch us today with Your grace, mercy and love for others. We want the world to see the Jesus that we love, adore and trust with all things in our life. You oh Lord, are my King. Thank You from the bottom of my heart for being Lord of all my decisions. Bless my readers to sincerely trust in You for all things, for I ask this in the precious and loving name of Jesus, AMEN!

Footnote: If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. 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 www.nuggetsfromgodsword.org 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!

2016

Reasons To Defend The Faith

May I encourage you to get your spiritual ‘Nuggets’ to start your day off right? This might be a day, or a week that you may need to challenge a ‘Christian’ worker about a false teaching. Do you feel fully equipped to do that? May I encourage you to read the whole devotional, and look for your blessing, friend!………

Today’s Bible Reference: Jude 3–4
Today’s Bible Text: …. I must write about something else, urging you to defend the faith that God has entrusted once for all time to his holy people. I say this because some ungodly people have wormed their way into your churches, saying that God’s marvelous grace allows us to live immoral lives. The condemnation of such people was recorded long ago, for they have denied our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ.
The Bible Translation: New Living Translation (NLT)

My Take Away: I believe that some early believers will look at our churches today and wonder why do we bother to call it a ‘House of God’ because it is so far from their traditional idea of what God’s house should look like. Think about it friend, in earlier churches, ladies had to cover almost every piece of skin, compared to many today that aim to expose as much as they feel like they can get by with, or at least tightly wrap it. Women had to be silent in church, but today men are so passive in their roles, that many churches survive because of the work, and in some cases teaching of the Word, especially to our kids. Some churches even have female pastors, because of the shortages of men willing to step up to the place of responsibility in their denomination. Styles of music has drastically changed, and I won’t get further into that because even today it is a very controversial subject among church goers. So because we have become so tolerant of these few things that I mentioned, among the many other things out there, I believe that Jude could just as easily have addressed His letter to either of our churches today. The words that God caught my attention with are the words where Jude challenged the church to ‘defend the gospel’  or ‘defend the faith that God has entrusted to us’. This tells me that we must be so convinced of what we truly believe that we would be willing to defend it among our friends, our coworkers, or even in a doctor’s office waiting room area, when others speak falsely or derogatory of it. Defending the Word of God becomes critical when our faith tells us that what is being declared disagrees with the Word of God, and when we are prepared to go to battle to defend it. I know, we never like to argue over religion, and I’m with you on that, but what if the circumstances that Jude recognized at his local church was happening at your church, where members became teachers and then started out to ease what God really intended believers to adhere to? What if we got a few new members and within a short period of time they were sharing some beliefs with us that we had never heard of before? They may have even wiggled themselves into a teaching position, as most churches today could always use more workers, and we wound up under their teaching. Would we recognize any false doctrines being taught and then be willing to defend against the hypocrisy? Even if it meant that we would lose that wonderful new couple who joined our church and were already paying good tithes into our church treasury? God had Jude include this very short one-chapter book in His Word, because He knew that all down through the ages we would need to be reminded of this. I would encourage us to soak this in real good today, and be willing to defend the Gospel of Jesus Christ in every circumstance of life – especially in our local churches.

Prayer: Lord, we have become a people willing to compromise our souls because of numbers in our church membership, or in order to satisfy our church budgets, or even to fill the teacher voids in our Bible schools. Unfortunately, I believe we may also easily let someone slide in with varying beliefs who might influence our church memberships or at least cause them to question what they truly believe. Forgive us Lord. We have such a large percentage that attend our churches without any intention of maturing spiritually, or becoming confrontational about Your precious Word, should it become necessary to defend the Gospel as Jude has taught us today. Please forgive us Lord. Draw us close to thee dear Lord and give us a clear understanding of Your Word so that we might defend its truths when and as needed. We need You precious Lord. Amen!

Footnote: If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. 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 www.nuggetsfromgodsword.org 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!

2016

Stand Firm

THE HOLY BIBLE – 56 Sin is what gives death its sting, and the Law is the power behind sin. 57 But thank God for letting our Lord Jesus Christ give us the victory! 58 My dear friends, stand firm and don’t be shaken. Always keep busy working for the Lord. You know that everything you do for him is worthwhile. ~ 1 Corinthians 15:56-58 ~ The Contemporary English Version (CEV)

THOUGHTS: I’ve heard terms like ‘hunker down’ and I’ve heard it used in scenarios where all preparations have been completed, so now settle in for the main event. Before I give you another scenario, I promise you that I will not talk politics on this blog, because my story, and this blog, is about a much more important matter and individual. However, I’ve seen in every case where politicians will begin their campaigns in fairly low gear as they try to organize their campaign and gear up towards the BIG day, but they will stand committed to their campaign principles and goals. Now, let’s think about all that Paul is sharing in his admonition to the Corinthian church, and why I believe that God placed this in His word especially for us. In the verses preceding the ones above, Paul explained what happens to our bodies after they wear out here on earth. I realize for the non-believer reading this devotional, this simply means that life is done, so no need to worry about any possible future life. The Bible teaches otherwise, friend, and I would love to share more on that with you. However, for the believer, it’s almost like a kid looking towards Christmas and counting down the days, for we know that the greatest gift ever imagined, was given for us through the death and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ. Knowing that the time for us to see Him, builds our anticipation towards that day, and it causes us to rejoice in anticipation of His presence throughout all eternity! Praise to the everlasting Prince of Peace! When a child builds up so much excitement about Christmas, parents must find ways to really keep them busy, so they don’t become overwhelmed with anticipation. Paul knew that we would have that same type of anticipation, but yet face ongoing pressure and distractions by the evil one while we remain in his territory here on earth, so Paul advises that we are to ‘hunker down’, or stand firm in our faith, so that He in whom we have placed our faith, will be our strength, our deliverance, our provider, our encourager and therefore, become the focus of our faith and our trust while we wait for His return. As we do this, we encourage those who are still in doubt and who tend to waiver when faced with challenges and distractions. There’s a little children’s chorus with words “if you’re happy and you know it clap your hands”. I would like to encourage all God’s children with the words we are reminded of in these verses today, “if you’re truly His and you know it, stand firm and don’t be shaken by anything Satan will fire at you while living in his territory here on earth, for we have a much brighter future to look forward to and an awesome Savior awaiting our welcome home to spend eternity with He and His Father – God”! It just don’t get any better than that friend! The great news for everyone – especially the unbeliever, is that you can have this truly awesome experience also, if you surrender your life to, and accept the invitation of, my Savior and Lord, Jesus Christ. Even better news is that there is no big secret in how you can be saved, in fact, I have all the help you need in the Footnote below! Make your decision and commitment today friend, then join us in standing firm in our faith as we await that awesome day, when our Lord will welcome us home!!

PRAYER: We are so blessed by the Gift that You provided for us dear God, so that we might have a means of seeing You and worshiping You in person one day! Thank You dear Father, thank You dear Jesus for the greatest gift ever given! Please help us to stay focused, stand firm in our faith, so that we would not cave in to the snares of Satan and his many cohorts here on earth. As we focus on eternity with You, may we aim to live like You and in full obedience to all that You have instructed us, may we stand so firm in our faith, that it will become obvious to all that we come into contact with, whose we are. It’s You we love, and live to be with, dear Jesus. Please grant us strength and perseverance to live our life pleasing to You, for I ask these things in the precious name of Jesus, AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please speak with a local Bible Teaching pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com so that we can pray with you and give you help and or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Any words underlined above will 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 blogger.nuggetsfromgodsword.org and read more, or you may freely 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, Sebring, FL! 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!

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