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

Posts tagged ‘Abraham’

The Promises of God

SCRIPTURE  FROM:   Romans 4:23-25 (TLB)

TEXT:  23 Now this wonderful statement—that he was accepted and approved through his faith—wasn’t just for Abraham’s benefit. 24 It was for us, too, assuring us that God will accept us in the same way he accepted Abraham—when we believe the promises of God who brought back Jesus our Lord from the dead. 25 He died for our sins and rose again to make us right with God, filling us with God’s goodness.

OBSERVATION:   Abraham was blessed, and he benefited from the wonderful gifts of God when God blessed he and Sarah with a child in their old age. Paul wants us to know through this Scripture today that God’s grace is all sufficient for His children today, if we would trust in the very One whose death and resurrection we believe in, and celebrate this very week on our church calendars.  

APPLICATION:   The Scripture today is probably one of the most important ones that we could have come across, especially at this time of the year. For centuries churches have celebrated Holy Week, with the Good Friday and Easter weekend being only second to that of Christmas. On Good Friday we remember the death of Jesus Christ, as recorded in the Bible. For those who have not yet accepted Jesus as Lord of their life, or you’ve been playing around with the relationship that you once started with Jesus, let me remind you that the only reason Jesus died on that cross at Calvary was to satisfy your sin and the sins of mankind. Are you rejecting His sacrifice and turning your head to the sacrifice that someone (Jesus) made just for you? Please take the opportunity this Easter weekend to accept the gift of eternal life, through the forgiveness of your sin, offered through the death of Jesus on the cross. The Bible says in verse 24 above, that God brought Jesus back to life on the 3rd day, signifying that He made Abraham, and us (His born again saints of God) right with His Father (God). Friends, that was quite a sacrifice that Jesus made, just for the sin of mankind. Will you reconsider and accept that gift this week? Easter will bring a fresh encounter for you as you join other saints in worshiping and praising the risen Lord next weekend!

PRAYER:   Lord, Your love is beyond anything mankind can imagine. Our Scripture reminds us today of the extent of Your love, and the sacrifice You made to demonstrate that love to us. Never before, and never again will we be blessed with such love and such awesome gifts. Please forgive us when we are unappreciative and reject Your offer of salvation. Lord we offer ourselves to You in return for Your gracious gifts, and we look forward in great anticipation to the day when we see You face to face! What a day that will be! 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!

 

Light Your Path

THE HOLY BIBLE (Contemporary English Version – John 8:12): 12 Once again Jesus spoke to the people. This time he said, “I am the light for the world! Follow me, and you won’t be walking in the dark. You will have the light that gives life.”

THOUGHTS: Having recently had surgery, the doctor was emphatic about making sure there was adequate light at night to make sure I didn’t trip on anything. Earlier this week I was working on a project that involved using a screwdriver. Once it got dark enough I could not continue, because without light I just could not find the screw-head. I believe that you are probably getting the point, that without sufficient light you just cannot do a whole lot. But what about in other aspects of life where we don’t necessarily depend on natural light versus the absence of light? There are times when we need to make decisions, and we feel totally blinded because we just don’t know what impact our decision will have on us. For example, retirement. We may want to begin retirement at age 50, so we could enjoy our dream vacations and destinations while we still have fairly good health. However, we worry about there being enough money in our retirement fund to keep us out of poverty, because who knows how long we will live into retirement? There seems to always be a part of decision making that is impacted by the unknown, so we stumble around in the dark, hoping that we will make good decisions. For those who read their Bibles, we know that there are two final destinations that awaits us after death from this world. If we have accepted the Lord Jesus Christ as our Savior, then Jesus has lifted the vail and showed us what our eternal kingdom will look like, and who will be in charge there. God created this universe, so we know He is there, and His Son, Jesus, is already there waiting for us. For those who have not made a decision like this, then the Bible is also clear on their destination, and who will be in charge there, for Satan and his angels awaits those who have deliberately chosen to walk in darkness. Unfortunately folk, if you are like many here, who have already had your share of earthly sufferings, please allow me to gently break the bad news to you: ‘You ain’t seen nothing yet’. Won’t you consider being obedient to the Light of this world today friend? Jesus loved us and suffered on a cruel cross just so that we might have the keys to heaven, or know the pathway to heaven. He has provided light to the dark path that we are traveling, for He is the Light of the world. Why go on blindly as if in total darkness, when we know who the Light is, and where we can find it/Him? Jesus loves us way too much to see us plunder around in darkness and lose our battle to Satan, but He also loved us enough to allow us to make the choice of whether we will invite Light into our dark pathway of life. The choice seems plain, and obvious to me. Will you please do me a big favor and make the right choice, for I really want to see all of my friends and family in heaven on celebration day, especially you, friend!

PRAYER: The picture is clear dear God, for You have provided the Light that this world needs. Not only to prevent our stumbling around in the dark here on earth, but also for providing a clear, lighted path to heaven, where we are told that no light will be necessary there for You are the light. Praise God forever and forever! Please touch the lives of the unsaved today dear God. Please light their path so brightly that they will recognize their need for the Savior. Thank You for so adequately providing the Light of the world Heavenly Father, to be my Savior from Hell and damnation. My deepest desire is to see my family and friends do the same, so I am humbly placing this request at Your feet, praying that Your perfect will might be accomplished today. I ask these things in the precious name of Jesus, THE Light, THE Truth and THE Way, 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!

Permission Granted To Enter

THE HOLY BIBLE (The Contemporary English Version – Revelation 21:27): 27 But nothing unworthy will be allowed to enter. No one who is dirty-minded or who tells lies will be there. Only those whose names are written in the Lamb’s book of life will be in the city.

THOUGHTS: I recently took an international trip. Because I was leaving my country of citizenship, I needed proof to show the authorities of the visiting country that I was who I said I was. They saw from my passport that I was a legal person in my home country, now they had to decide if they felt OK about letting me into their country. They were not at all interested in allowing a ‘bad’ person into their country. In fact, most immigration officers would check to make sure that I was not on a ‘bad’ list of persons that should not be allowed entry. In every case, it is highly advised that you never attempt to enter another country unprepared, otherwise they will use their option to decline you entrance into their country. In our scripture today John is sharing with us what we might expect when we make our final crossing – the one from planet earth to our final destination. I will point to the very last sentence in our scripture today, where we are told that only those whose names are in the book of life will be allowed into heaven. Friends, you will recall from many earlier devotionals where we discussed such things as salvation, redemption, a loving Savior, a sacrificial death for the forgiveness of our sin, only one way, and many other like phrases and or studies to help remind ourselves of the need, and the only way of preparing ourselves for acceptance into God’s heaven. In my above travel story, notice that I had to ask for permission to enter the foreign country. Notice that based on my past behavior, they opted to allow me entrance. Notice that John is given a very similar scenario in this verse. You must have accepted Jesus as your personal Savior, and therefore gotten your name into the Lamb’s book of life. However, this is not like an airline ticket that you purchase, and then live any way you want until the day of your trip. For we are told that nothing unworthy, no dirty-minded person, nor liars would be permitted there. In other words, if you have accepted Jesus and lived your life like He personally demonstrated, and as explained through His biblical saints, then chances are that you are who you say you are. Although I sincerely hope that none of you reading this devotional would ignore the warnings here, I want to be sure and remind you that failure to be accepted in heaven automatically directs you to hell. There are only two destinations. Hell is the Lake of fire that we talked about yesterday, so I sincerely pray that you have either made your travel preparations for heaven already, or that God will melt your hardened hearts today so that you might seek the face of Jesus and His righteousness, and invite Him into your heart and life. This is the only means into heaven. I want to see you there friend, please don’t disappoint me!

PRAYER: Thank You Father for the reminder of what we must do today to prepare for our final crossing of the border between our current home and the next. For those of us that know You, our minds are fixed on heaven and our celebratory time we will enjoy worshiping at Your feet. However this scripture has reminded us that for those who are not prepared for heaven, they are destined for hell – a place of eternal torment. The main reason we live today Lord, is to evangelize and encourage those that have not made a decision yet to accept You as Lord and Savior. May this be a day that your saints will be energized to share, to encourage and to live life as a full demonstration of God’s love for us, so that our family, friends and coworkers might see the results of Your grace in our lives. We long to be with You oh Lord. Please make our waiting time here worthwhile by using us to touch the lives of those needing You. I ask all this in the strong 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 read through Biblical truths on How To Know Jesus, 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 www.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!

Evidence of our Faith

THE HOLY BIBLE (The Contemporary English Version – James 2:14; 21-23): 14 My friends, what good is it to say you have faith, when you don’t do anything to show that you really do have faith? Can that kind of faith save you? …… 21 Well, our ancestor Abraham pleased God by putting his son Isaac on the altar to sacrifice him. 22 Now you see how Abraham’s faith and deeds worked together. He proved that his faith was real by what he did. 23 This is what the Scriptures mean by saying, “Abraham had faith in God, and God was pleased with him.” That’s how Abraham became God’s friend.

THOUGHTS: Ever noticed how we evaluate people to determine who they truly are? After a short meeting with, or introduction to, someone, generally we can come away with our minds set on who they are deep inside. James is getting a similar point across to us in these verses today, for He tells us that if we truly have faith, there will not be a need for us to tell folk that we have it, but that it will shine through in our actions. The example given by James is a mind opener on this subject. Imagine Abraham exercising his faith in God to the degree that he is headed to the place of sacrifice prepared to place his own son on the altar to be sacrifice, because this is what God ordered him to do. Imagine doing something like that, being assured that God will work out something for His good, if we follow His command! Friends, I believe that this story is pure evidence that the faith of Abraham was far greater and convicting to him than any earthly possession. Matthew Henry said in his commentary on these verses: “This place of Scripture plainly shows that an opinion, or assent to the gospel, without works, is not faith. There is no way to show we really believe in Christ, but by being diligent in good works, from gospel motives, and for gospel purposes.” I truly believe that we are tested each day on our level of faith, and by the end of the day we can analyze how much of what we said or did was based on our faith in God and dependence on Him, versus how much was a result of our selfish will for our own selfish purpose. I believe the question to ponder today is, “do we truly believe in God?” If so, “Why do we not exercise sufficient faith in Him to prove our faith in, and dedication to Him” If we never said a word to our coworkers about our Christianity or belief in God, would they know by our faith that we are a Son, or Daughter, of the King of all kings, based on our expressed faith?

 PRAYER: What a mind-sobering thought for us today oh God! We say with our lips that “we believe in You”, but is our faith truly evident and noteworthy to those that we come into contact with? What’s inside of us will truly come out when we face relatives, friends and coworkers who have gained knowledge of us through everyday dealings. I wonder, have they seen through my actions alone that there is a God, or that I am controlled by, and encouraged by, the very God of this universe? Please help my friends reading this devotional today, and myself, to truly put our heart where our mouth is. It is very easy to say at church, or in the presence of fellow Christians, that we are ‘Christian’. May our hearts be so affected by Your grace dear Lord, that our actions will overflow with the abundant faith of our hearts, and may You be glorified if this faith is recognized by anyone, because it’s all about You Jesus. I ask all this, in faith, and in the wonderful name of Jesus, my Lord and soon coming King, 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 read through Biblical truths on How To Know Jesus, 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!

Jesus Christ – The Same Now and Forever!

THE HOLY BIBLE (Good News Translation – Hebrews 13:7-8): 7Remember your former leaders, who spoke God’s message to you. Think back on how they lived and died, and imitate their faith. 8Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and for ever.

THOUGHTS: I remember the first time that I installed a pet door at our home, our dog would go up to it, but not touch it. We helped him by pushing him through the door a few times to show him that he could trust it, and now he zooms through it as if it wasn’t even there! Here are a few ways that we might learn to, or enhance our, trust in God as believers:

  1. Meditate on His Word (the Bible), and see how God miraculously handled situations for His saints such as Abraham, Isaac, Noah, Moses and Paul, to name a few. Then read the verse captioned today – He is the same yesterday, today and for ever!
  2. Listen to testimonies of God’s faithful servants today – Pastors, Missionaries, Bible School teachers, etc, and hear how they have experienced God at work in their lives – often in miraculous ways. Very often we can hear how God is still working in their lives and be reassured that God is the same yesterday, today and for ever!
  3. Always be ready and willing to trust God – even in the small, or what may appear to be insignificant, things in life. I head a faithful Brother say at one time that as he trusts God to help him find such minimal things as his keys, it builds his faith to ask God for help and guidance in the major areas of His life. It then helps him to gain confidence that God is the same yesterday, today and for ever!

Warning – we must be extremely careful to not let Satan tempt us into believing that God ‘is not the same’ when our prayers are not answered the way that we have instructed God. Remember God is all knowing and all powerful, and we are not. When we take our petitions before Him we must be prepared for His answer, not necessarily the selfish, unthoughtful ways that we may have told Him to answer. Let us therefore place complete faith in God, and as we take our small or large requests before Him, rest assured that He is able, and that He will respond with us in mind, knowing that all things work together for good, for those who place their total faith and trust in Him. Another warning – you can only place your faith and trust in someone you have a relationship with. If you do not have this type of relationship with the God of this universe, please look carefully into the notes and hyperlinks offered in the ‘Footnote’ below. God is able friend!

PRAYER: How awesome it is to be reminded of Your power dear God, and the unending peace I gain each day by placing my faith and trust in You. Should there be one that You may cause to stumble across this devotional today who need You as their personal Savior, Lord Jesus, then I pray that You might convict them and draw them to You. Should there be one who has lost confidence in Your ability to still touch lives today, then I pray that You might deal in their lives and cause them to remember Your awesome power. Please continue to bless and draw mankind unto Yourself, so that we might be reinvigorated in our faith and become even more bold in our witness and in proclaiming how faithful You still are today! Lord, You are gracious, good and eternal. Thank You for reminding us again that You are still God! I trust in You oh God, and ask all these things believing, and in faith – in the awesome name of Your Son, Jesus Christ, 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 read through Biblical truths on How To Know Jesus, 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!

Actionable Reminders

THE HOLY BIBLE (Good News Translation – Hebrews 13:1-3): 1Keep on loving one another as Christian brothers and sisters. 2Remember to welcome strangers in your homes. There were some who did that and welcomed angels without knowing it. 3Remember those who are in prison, as though you were in prison with them. Remember those who are suffering, as though you were suffering as they are.

THOUGHTS: In this chapter of Hebrews, we are being reminded what followers of Christ should look like in our everyday life. In these chosen verses, we can see where the following is dealt with:

  • Love one for another (especially our Christian Brothers and Sisters) – I believe that this is totally related to the extent to which we love our Savior. For when we are totally in love with the Creator, how can we but love all that He has created;
  • Hospitality – While we often look at Genesis 18 when we see Abraham entertaining angels, I believe it would be good for us to look at this from the point of view of the stranger also. What impression did the stranger get of God when he visited our home? Was he rejected because of the smell or looks of the stranger, or was this stranger accepted in the same love that Christ showed to us when, in spite of His awesome power to overcome, yet He accepted the cross for ‘low-lives’ such as us – sinners;
  • Those who are in prison – we are to remember them as if we were right there with them. Too often we say that we know how someone feels, and we might be tempted to say the same thing about someone in prison. But we are instructed to remember them as if we were there ourselves. This tells me that I should visit the prison and understand what it is like to live in there so that I could truly remember my incarcerated friend and truly identify with his needs and his hurts – or perhaps his victories;
  • Those who are suffering – This especially refers to those who are suffering for their testimonies. Paul was beat and imprisoned for his testimony, and no doubt this is still happening to our Brothers and Sisters who minister in troubling parts of the world. We are instructed to imagine that we are right there with them. So let us pay more attention to that missionary who visits our church next time and tries to tell us what it is like in the part of the world in which they are ministering. Let’s try to identify with them so we could truly feel what they feel and adequately pray for them.

PRAYER: How easy it is for us to fall into the trap of our own little ‘world’, where everything may be going along well. However, Father God, You have shown us through Your Word today that for Your children to truly follow in Your footsteps, we are to love like You loved, and feel empathy for our Brothers and Sisters who might be going through something totally foreign to us. Please tender our hearts oh Lord, and help us to make every effort to identify with each other – or show that we care about them, so that we may more diligently pray for them, meet their needs and/or love them unconditionally like You first loved us. Please bless those who will meditate on this devotional. Draw them closer to You dear God, so that they may desire to know and love their family and friends in such a way that the love of God would be evident to them. These blessings I plead before You in the name of Jesus, Your Son – my redeemer and King, 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 read through Biblical truths on How To Know Jesus, 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!

The Evidence & Results of True Faith

The Holy Bible (The Contemporary English Version – Hebrews 11:13-16): 13 Every one of those people died. But they still had faith, even though they had not received what they had been promised. They were glad just to see these things from far away, and they agreed that they were only strangers and foreigners on this earth. 14 When people talk this way, it is clear that they are looking for a place to call their own. 15 If they had been talking about the land where they had once lived, they could have gone back at any time. 16 But they were looking forward to a better home in heaven. That’s why God wasn’t ashamed for them to call him their God. He even built a city for them.

Thoughts: I believe I was renewed in my faith as I read this scripture, and was reminded of the faith shown by our forefathers. The writer reminds us that all the faith shown by these powerful men of God, such as Abraham, Sarah, Isaac and Jacob was not necessarily on the promises that would be revealed to them during their lifetime, but because their minds were not fixed on eartly things and/or places, God was not ashamed of their human failures and instead prepare a heavenly home for them that, no doubt, was their ultimate goal. I am reminded of a saying that often we are so earthly minded that we are of no heavenly good!! It sounds just the opposite for these great saints, and I believe that this may be much of the reason why they were particularly made a part of the scriptures – to help show us what 'true faith' really looks like. To my readers, let me encourage you to join me in re-evaluating the level of our faith. Let's begin with evaluating our priorities – are they more earthly minded than heavenly? Do our actions reflect the qualities learned from our relationship with Christ, or those inherited from our earthly interactions? Would God be ashamed for us to say that He is our God, or would He be proud of His children? We have a hope friends! We have a heavenly home and a gracious heavenly Father that awaits our arrival in His presence. Are you ready? Let's make Him proud of us as long as we are allowed to remain on planet earth, and may others be drawn to our Savior through the faith they see in us!

Prayer: Father God, I thank You for the awesome experience of knowing You, and being blessed by the many ways that You have already touched my life. Please help my readers and I to place our relationship with You as our very top priority, and please help us to learn from the faith of our ancestors, while giving us the urgency to also allow our faith in You to be so obvious in us that those following in our footsteps would see more of Jesus than of our sinful selves. May our lives be so focused on You, oh Lord, that You would be proud to hear us call You our Father and our God. May all who come behind us find us faithful! I ask this in humility and in the wonderful 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 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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