Living In Fellowship With God

It is evident in our Scripture today what makes God proud of us – when we live in a right relationship with Him, and how our evil minds upset Him – for He is the Designer; Maker of all things around us; and the God of this universe. As I read the Scriptures today, it was as if God chose to remind me that our recent events of riots; crime; hatred; envy and our insistence of our own personal agendas really compares to what He saw in the time of Noah. Friends, if we, as simple forms of mankind are fed up with the crime and sin of our countrymen/women, imagine how God must be getting to the end of His rope with us. But God gave us an example to follow – the story of Noah should open our eyes today about what truly pleases God.

DATE WRITTEN: Friday, 2021-01-08
WRITTEN AT: Paul B Johnson State Park, Hattiesburg, MS

BIBLE REFERENCE: Genesis 6:10-13
TRANSLATION: Good News Translation (GNT)

BIBLE TEXT: 10 Noah had no faults and was the only good man of his time. He lived in fellowship with God11 but everyone else was evil in God’s sight, and violence had spread everywhere. 12 God looked at the world and saw that it was evil, for the people were all living evil lives. 13 God said to Noah, “I have decided to put an end to all people. I will destroy them completely, because the world is full of their violent deeds.

OBSERVATION: It is evident in our Scripture today what makes God proud of us – when we live in a right relationship with Him, and how our evil minds upset Him – for He is the Designer; Maker of all things around us; and the God of this universe. As I read the Scriptures today, it was as if God chose to remind me that our recent events of riots; crime; hatred; envy and our insistence of our own personal agendas really compares to what He saw in the time of Noah. Friends, if we, as simple forms of mankind are fed up with the crime and sin of our countrymen/women, imagine how God must be getting to the end of His rope with us. But God gave us an example to follow – the story of Noah should open our eyes today about what truly pleases God.

APPLICATION: I wonder, how many Noah’s are there in your Circle of influence? I am amazed by the simple term used to clarify the righteousness of Noah – ‘He lived in fellowship with God’. Wow! We hear lots of good things said at a funeral, or at a roast, but how often have you heard of a man being referred to as ‘He lived in fellowship with God’. So I believe it is worth our time to consider what this truly means. Some versions says that Noah was right with God (a righteous man) and that he obeyed God. I believe that he was a man full of faith also, for God knew that it would take great faith in Him to obediently follow through with all He was about to order Noah to do. You see, men seem to love doing their own thing, by themselves, probably so they could receive all the praise. In a personal experience, I once worked with a group of men who agreed to undertake reconstruction of an area of our church auditorium to incorporate a sound system for the church. A fine, older gentleman took the charge, but soon many of the helpers felt they were interfering by trying to help, so they stopped going to try and help. They felt like the older gentleman wanted to complete the task alone. Now, notice how often the Bible records Noah objecting, correcting or suggesting to God what should be done differently with the dimensions, building material or layout of the ark. I believe that Noah had built such a love and respect for his Father – knowing that He had already created the whole earth perfectly, created mankind perfectly, and been more patient with His children than any man could attempt to do, so of course Noah listened to God, and obeyed Him without excuse or question. I believe we could easily see why God chose Noah, and why Moses referred to Noah as a man who lived in fellowship with God. But let’s now look at what may have upset God enough with the rest of His creation that He wanted to get rid of them and start over again? The Bible says that God was tired of their evil and the violence that had spread everywhere. Can we truly read those words and not reflect on our world today? There are some who are beheading Christians; some who are killing infants before they are given a chance at life; some who are killing police and others at they try to have their own way in riots; some who are stealing from the poor, even while watching them live under bridges out of their own poverty; some who reject the church because of its stand for God and some who attend church out of habit, but have no desire to commit to a right relationship with God. What is it that may cause God to act any differently with us, than the way He acted with the people of Noah’s day? Should He be any kinder to us? Should He save our people from disaster even when they act like Satan and follow his evil plan? Please let me encourage each reader today by saying that it is not too late to accept Jesus as Lord, and it is not too late to develop a right relationship with our Maker. Worship Him daily; read His Word daily for that day’s instructions, and reminders of how you should act; seek to recognize His presence in everything you attempt each day; and follow His commands in obedience to His Word each and every day. Enjoy a right relationship with Your Master and Lord, precious friend!

PRAYER: Dear Lord, You are merciful and kind, almighty and all-powerful. Your love for Your children is beyond our comprehension for it is so unconditional and pure. I believe that when You started the world population over at the time of the flood, You may have hoped that we would have learned our lesson from Your actions with the people of Noah’s day. I am truly saddened by the news each and every day, for it seems that our people today are much worse than anything You saw back then. Please be patient with us as we learn about Your goodness, and Your patience with Your children who consistently revert to evil, instead of seeking to follow Your will and Your design. Please Lord, forgive us of our sin – both our actions, words and our thoughts, for without You in our lives, we are left to the will of our earthly master – Satan. Only You could make things better for us, Lord. Please deal in the hearts of each reader that we may seek Your face and do Your will by having a right relationship with You, as long as we have breath here on earth. 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. 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 you be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

In Habitual Fellowship With God

I believe that the earth has once again become, as described in verse 11. However, I want us to ponder today ‘who will be the ‘Noah’ of our day?’. Could be it be you? Could it be me? Only God knows. But we also might know whether we are truly righteous in all of our ways. We may camouflage the truth to our friends around us, but remember – God knows every little detail about our actions, and even our thoughts. Think about it friends…

Tuesday, 2019-01-08

Bible Reference: Genesis 6:9-13
Translation: Amplified Bible (AMP)

Bible Text:  9 …. Noah was a righteous man [one who was just and had right standing with God], blameless in his [evil] generation; Noah walked (lived) [in habitual fellowship] with God. 10 Now Noah became the father of three sons: Shem, Ham, and Japheth. 11 The [population of the] earth was corrupt [absolutely depraved—spiritually and morally putrid] in God’s sight, and the land was filled with violence [desecration, infringement, outrage, assault, and lust for power]. 12 God looked on the earth and saw how debased and degenerate it was, for all humanity had corrupted their way on the earth and lost their true direction. 13 God said to Noah, “I intend to make an end of all that lives, for through men the land is filled with violence; and behold, I am about to [d]destroy them together with the land. 

OBSERVATION: I believe that the earth has once again become, as described in verse 11. However, I want us to ponder today ‘who will be the ‘Noah’ of our day?’. Could be it be you? Could it be me? Only God knows. But we also might know whether we are truly righteous in all of our ways. We may camouflage the truth to our friends around us, but remember – God knows every little detail about our actions, and even our thoughts. Think about it friends…

APPLICATION: Imagine with me that you are constructing a project, and you leave at the end of the day feeling very proud of your accomplishments that day. But while your mind is at rest at home that evening, you remember that there was a key ingredient that you accidentally left out of your day’s work on that project, and it would lead to total disaster in a few weeks if you go on with the project instead of fixing the issue. Next morning you arrive at the project location and ask for help in destroying everything you did the previous day, so that you could start afresh and do everything according to its perfect design. In the time of Noah, God looked at everything He had created, and was extremely disappointed at the totally opposite direction that everything was going, compared to His original intent, so He decided to start back over with just one righteous man and his family. I can only believe that today the world must be in much worse shape than it has ever been before. Why, think about the little value placed on human life itself. From killing the innocent unborn, to being snatched by a Human Trafficker, or targeted by a murderer, or a pimp, or an organ reaper. The world is being destroyed in every way possible by mankind, for just as God declared in verse 12, it has become corrupted and debased in every way. Friends, we know what God did when He saw the world in such a mess in the days of Noah. I am confident that He is still God, and that He could very easily do the same thing to our world today, although I’m sure that He would never break His promise to never destroy all of creation again. But we have a responsibility, to make sure that our lives are aligned with what God demands of us in His Word, and to seek in every way to be in a condition like He found Noah to be – righteous. Prayer changes things, and we could certainly do that, but the Bible is clear that we must be ready to meet our God, no matter what circumstances are going on around us. May I encourage you today to first of all, know Jesus in an intimate and personal way; and secondly, aim for righteousness – being right with God. This would be living in a habitual relationship with God! To do this, you must seek to live according to His instructions; follow His example; and seek His will daily so that you may stay in line with His will. You may not be able to change the world, but you can become associated with the only One who can. Seek after His righteousness, friend, and all this will be given to you!

PRAYER: Lord, You created the world, and You saw fit to destroy the world with a flood. However, You have promised to never destroy the world again. Nonetheless, please help us to never lose our sense of alertness and readiness, because You have also promised in Your Word that You will return to take Your saints home to glory with You. Yes, our world today is probably worse than You’ve ever seen it before, but precious Lord, how we long for the day that You will take us ‘home’ with You! You’ve shown us in Your Word how we might become, and remain, ‘right with You’. Thank You for the assurance of our salvation Lord! May I please ask that You speak gently to the hearts of all those who will read this devotional, as You draw them unto Yourself, and open their eyes to the urgency of the hour that is quickly approaching for Your return. I want to see You Lord, and I truly want to ask the favor of You miraculously touching many who will be impacted by Your Word, and even by this humble blog. To God be the glory for all things that You will accomplish in Your time! AMEN!

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

Biblical Qualities of a Growing Church

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: Acts 2:42-47
Today’s Bible Text: 42 All the believers devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching, and to fellowship, and to sharing in meals (including the Lord’s Supper*), and to prayer. 43 A deep sense of awe came over them all, and the apostles performed many miraculous signs and wonders. 44 And all the believers met together in one place and shared everything they had. 45 They sold their property and possessions and shared the money with those in need. 46 They worshiped together at the Temple each day, met in homes for the Lord’s Supper, and shared their meals with great joy and generosity*—47 all the while praising God and enjoying the goodwill of all the people. And each day the Lord added to their fellowship those who were being saved.
The Bible Translation: New Living Translation (NLT)

My Take Away: Without giving the appearance of being too repetitive, I wanted to highlight some of the things that made the very early church a very successful one. This is in hopes that we may see something that might help us to do the same today. Friends, let me say at the very outset that I am not referring to the BIG church down the road who seems to be flourishing already, or the small to medium church that seems to be catching the BIG church up pretty quickly. I’m talking about the church of our Almighty God, for I believe that it should always be our objective to see His church added to daily (evidence of the unsaved world being reached with the gospel). So here are some things worth taking note of:

  • Those that were saved, devoted themselves to the apostles’ teachings. What beautiful choice of words! Being ‘devoted to my wife’ means that I will do everything to be with her, listen to her, try to please her and will go with her even when a good football game is on or the fish are biting good! Therefore attending church, or Bible teaching, would have similar priorities to those things just mentioned, or as mentioned in Acts 2. There would be nothing with greater priority;
  • Fellowship – I believe that when these Acts 2 believers spent tIme together under the teaching of God’s Word, they learned some things that helped them really get along with each other, so they enjoyed times of fellowship together. I bet they learned to overlook one another’s faults, and also their individual peculiarities!!
  • Sharing in meals (including the Lord’s Supper) – The mention of ‘food’ will normally bring folk out to church, but what a challenge to get those same folk to join you for a Bible Study that follows, or the Lord’s Supper that may only occur once per month or quarter. Knowing that God sees the heart, I wonder what He must see as the ‘devotion’ of these folk?
  • Prayer – Similar to the last item, this is probably one of the least attended services at a church. Analyzing this from a human perspective, means that folk either struggle with talking to their Father, fellowshipping with other believers while they talk with their Father, or simply sees no importance in publicly talking with their Father with hopes that others might be encouraged or blessed to hear of your answered prayer. I wonder which!
  • Shared everything they had with those in need – In other scripture, God shows where the church was designed to handle this through tithes and gift giving, or through handing out food and clothing to those in need. Oh that we would be done with the excuses of assuming that the church abuses this privilege, therefore we will not give to the church as God directs. These folk sold everything they had so that others might be blessed. May I suggest that the giver was probably more blessed than the receiver?

You may be asking why God would have all this included in His Word for us. I believe that it was very intentional in mentioning that the church grew daily. Again, this refers to God’s church – regardless of what denomination tag may have been placed on it on earth. Friends, our churches are dying rapidly today, so may I encourage you to not worry about inviting the church growth division of your state to discuss and help you analyze your church problems, but rather look inside your own heart and see how well you are doing in the above items? God will add to His church when he sees people who are serious about Him. Let’s take care of these things personally, and I believe that God will take care of the rest!

Prayer: Lord Jesus, in appreciation for all that You have blessed us with, we want to recommit ourselves to the proven qualities of this early church. I believe that You placed things like this in Your Word so that we might be best equipped to help grow Your kingdom in and through the many churches that we are involved in. Please help us to cut through the church politics, and the conclusions we tend to jump to about how our churches are run, and just do our part, knowing that You will add to Your church daily when Your children follow Your prescription for church growth. Thank You oh Lord for loving us enough to point us in the right direction. May we now be obedient, so that Your work might be accomplished before it’s a day too late. 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. 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 http://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

Things to Run From and Things to Run Towards

THE HOLY BIBLE (New Living Translation – 2 Timothy 2:20-22): 20 In a wealthy home some utensils are made of gold and silver, and some are made of wood and clay. The expensive utensils are used for special occasions, and the cheap ones are for everyday use. 21 If you keep yourself pure, you will be a special utensil for honorable use. Your life will be clean, and you will be ready for the Master to use you for every good work. 22 Run from anything that stimulates youthful lusts. Instead, pursue righteous living, faithfulness, love, and peace. Enjoy the companionship of those who call on the Lord with pure hearts.

THOUGHTS: One of the things that I love about God’s Word is that it not only tells us what not to do, but it also doesn’t leave it up to us to decide on our own what we think we should do, for it gives us a righteous path to follow that leads us towards the characteristics of Jesus. In verse 22, Timothy, together with us, are encouraged to run from youthful lusts. This tells me that we will be battered with temptation and youthful lusts, and we must learn to get away – run far away from them. I heard a story of a drunk who came to know the Lord. After this turn of events, the man would travel a different route every day between work and home in order to avoid the bar that he often frequented before Christ. I believe he ran from those lusts that held him captive before Christ. Likewise, I believe that we/Christians need to make very conscious decisions to avoid certain circumstances, places and things that might otherwise take us off track from our Christian walk and commitment to the Lord. Let’s run from them! Now, here are the things that we should run towards: righteous living – things that are right in God’s sight, for we are only righteous because of God; faithfulness – practice faith in God in our daily walk. Live in faith, and boast of it every time possible; love – not just natural lustful love, but actually practice the love that God showed us through His Son Jesus. Sacrificial, humble, unselfish love; peace – this is an unworried soldier who is content in the direction, support and leadership of his Chief, and convinced of the strength and agility of his fellow soldiers; and time together with other Christians – we become much like those we hang out with, for we strengthen our character by everything we experience from them, good or bad. ‘Birds of a feather flock together’, so we should be right at home fellowshipping and worshiping with other believers and we should desire to spend even more time with them. So where are you at in all of this friend? Have some things that you need to deliberately run from? Satisfied from the way your life is going, and your relationship with the Lord, that you are convinced that you are running towards and practicing the right things in your life? If not, may I remind you that the God who made you, and this universe, is available and ready to help you when you call on His name, right now? He is able friend! Know Him and know the peace that comes only from Him, then live like you are convinced that His peace is deep inside of you! I need this, and I believe you do also!

PRAYER: Dear God, may our lives be intentionally lived for You and according to the design outlined in Your Word. Thank You for the direction given to us today by Your servant Paul. I believe that Your servants will only be effective when we live according to Your design and in subjection to Your will and command. I also believe that for this world to change, they must see Christians being Christ-like and living according to what our handbook (the Bible) says. Lord, I pray that You will start with me, and I also plead with You to touch the lives of my readers, that they also may see the need for recommitting their lives to Your call on their lives and therefore live like children of God. Fall afresh on us dear Lord and allow Your Holy Spirit to indwell us with power to overcome sin and the temptations of this world. Help us to run away from sin, and instead, run towards You and display the characteristics Paul reminded us of today. For we are to be holy, even as you are holy! These requests I ask in the precious and holy name of Jesus, with thanksgiving, 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!