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

Posts tagged ‘Proof’

Proof, No Proof

Saturday, 2019-01-05

Bible Reference: Matthew 3:8, 10
Translation: Amplified Bible (AMP)

Bible Text: So produce fruit that is consistent with repentance [demonstrating new behavior that proves a change of heart, and a conscious decision to turn away from sin]; ……. 10 And already the axe [of God’s judgment] is [gswinging toward the root of the trees; therefore every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.

OBSERVATION: I was reminded of a television show – ‘Deal, No Deal’ as I meditated on these verses today. I know, don’t mix television with the precious Word of God, right? But Paul was so infuriated by the boldness of the Pharisees and Sadducees to show up at the river for baptism, that he took time to warn them of what a saved life looks like, vs one that is not. We should never have to tell anyone that we’re saved – it should be evident in our lives.

APPLICATION: In our Scripture today, Matthew relates that John the Baptist had been baptizing a lot of people. So one could only imagine that if they had not been baptized, then something must really be wrong with them. In the case of the religious leaders, John could tell that, to the crowd, they could easily have passed as ‘worthy of baptism’ because of their kinship to Abraham. However friends, is this not a good reminder for us? Some church attendees might tell you that their father was a pastor back in some church many years ago, so they are sure that they have a reserved place in heaven. Some might point to their regular attendance at your church for several decades, and all of the money that they gave for certain projects, so surely they are right ‘up there’ with the best of saints in your church. But the interesting thing that John points out to the religious leaders is that a repentant heart is what really matters. Some of you might wonder what exactly that would consist of, but I believe that this particular version of the Bible spells that out for you, for a repentant heart demonstrates a new behavior – meaning that it’s different to the behavior you once demonstrated in your life. Now your new behavior clearly comes from a heart that has been impacted and changed by its original designer and maker, Jesus Christ! Further, this changed heart will also show evidence of a conscious decision to stay away from sin. This includes your efforts to stay away from the people and places that once caused you to sin. Persistent study of God’s Word is critical, so that you could have a clear message from Him about what He consider ‘sin’, even though it might look like holiness to others. These changed attitudes, actions, thoughts and words are called ‘fruit’ by John, because He wanted us to understand that a tree, or a heart, built on the good things of Christ, will produce fruit/actions/words/attitudes that resemble the One who is feeding your tree/heart. Therefore, when there is no evidence that you are allowing God to ‘feed’ you, John declared that you will not survive, or reach eternity with Christ. Friends, as we live out everything that God has buried deep into our hearts, He will receive glory from those blessed by those ‘fruit’ that we produce. When we are merely following the crowd, or living a life of traditional church attendance, or imitating what other Christians do, and we have not sought personal forgiveness from God, and received a repentant, or changed heart – one just like His, then like the Pharisees and Sadducees, we are living on a slippery slope – one that can only lead all the way down to Hell. A New Year is a perfect time to seek a new heart – a repentant and changed heart that reflects the Master who you’ve invited to be your Lord. Please consider reading on to the Footnote for more information on how you might go about this transformation. Perhaps 2019 might be the year that you might seek baptism – a genuine one that celebrates a truly repentant heart!

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, thank You for salvation, and thank You for the message expressed through baptism. Please touch the hearts of all those that will read this devotional, especially those who imitate a Christian life, but have not accepted the One who gives a repentant heart so that we might take on His attributes and bear His fruit. True Christianity comes from a repentant heart, one filled with Jesus Christ. Bearing ‘fruit’, can only happen if the True Vine (Jesus) has taken up residence inside of us. Lord, for each reader today, I pray that it may be so. 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!

Who or What Are You Influenced By?

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: James 1:25-27
Today’s Bible Text: anyone keeps looking steadily into God’s law for free men, he will not only remember it but he will do what it says, and God will greatly bless him in everything he does. Anyone who says he is a Christian but doesn’t control his sharp tongue is just fooling himself, and his religion isn’t worth much. The Christian who is pure and without fault, from God the Father’s point of view, is the one who takes care of orphans and widows, and who remains true to the Lord—not soiled and dirtied by his contacts with the world.
The Bible Translation: The Living Bible (TLB)

My Take Away: There are a few things in this scripture today that James felt was of great importance to share with his listeners. God permitted these things in His Word to us, because He knew that we would struggle with these things also. Let’s examine them for our edification today:

  • Be doers of the Word – Hopefully you are refreshing your soul daily in the Word of God, and also over the weekend as you attend church to fellowship with other believers. This should mean that you are being reminded of the truths of God’s Word on a regular basis. Imagine for a moment that you are soaking in all this encouragement; truth; direction; wisdom; and unselfish, sacrificial love, but it has not impacted your life enough to create a change in your behavior and/or relationship with others. Friends, you can study the Driver’s License test book for days, but if you don’t do what it says when you take your test, you won’t be granted your license. Doing what the Word of God says, is a strong indication that it has impacted your life more than the world has. The Word says that God will bless you in your efforts towards obedience of His Word;
  • Control your tongue – It is unfortunate, but the tongue will give away the deepest secrets of your heart every time. It won’t take too many words before one will quickly discern who is influencing your life. If you bathe yourself with the Word of God, and seek God’s face in desiring to live out the Word of God, then His principles will govern what you say;
  • Proof of your influencer – When influenced by the Word of God, you will voluntarily take care of the widows and orphans. Has there been enough evidence lately that you are being influenced by God and His Word?
  • True to the Word – Are you saturated in the Word of God to the extent that it is virtually impossible for you to be influenced by your old friends, or the evil of this old world? We may continue to reside in this world, but because we represent the kingdom of light, there should be clear evidence that we are not of this world.

What does the world see when they come into contact with you? Same old same old, or a true, honest reflection of Jesus Christ? 

Prayer: Lord, I believe that the world is tired of seeing fakes, or make-believes, for it reminds them way too much of what they witness in the world everyday. I pray that as we deal with this reminder today, that You will influence us to be agents of change that will truly reflect the life and character of the One in whom we believe. I pray that words will not be necessary to express our relationship with You, but that others will see evidence in and through everything we say or do. Please dear Lord, may we truly be representative of all that You are, so that our contacts will catch a glimpse of Jesus today and desire to know Him personally. This is my prayer in deepest humility dear 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

How To Know Who Jesus Is

THE HOLY BIBLE John 10:24-30New Living Translation (NLT): 24 The people surrounded him and asked, “How long are you going to keep us in suspense? If you are the Messiah, tell us plainly.” 25 Jesus replied, “I have already told you, and you don’t believe me. The proof is the work I do in my Father’s name. 26 But you don’t believe me because you are not my sheep. 27 My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. 28 I give them eternal life, and they will never perish. No one can snatch them away from me, 29 for my Father has given them to me, and he is more powerful than anyone else. No one can snatch them from the Father’s hand. 30 The Father and I are one.”

THOUGHTS: In the highlighted scripture today, Jesus told the people following Him, that it was obvious that their eyes were open, but they were choosing to ignore the work that His Father had performed through Him. These mighty works were actual confirmation, or proof, that He truly is the Messiah, but unbelief had blinded them from seeing the mighty works of God. This made me think of our churches today and our, so called ‘Christians’ today. For I believe that if most of us were questioned on Sunday afternoon about the church services we attended that morning, we would probably respond about how ‘out of it’ our Worship Leader was today, or how boring our preacher was, or how disrespectful the teen agers were. Should we not use that invitation to celebrate that the Savior who gave His very life for us, actually met us there and blessed our time together? Or perhaps, we were reassured of His power and His might, and that His sweet Holy Spirit that is so available to us every day, was perfectly evidenced in our services. Or how sweet it was in singing praises to God and realizing that He was right there, receiving our praises and smiling at the worship of His children who recognized His mighty works that week. Perhaps reassure the person asking that it was worth every bit of effort extended for us to get out of bed on our day off, and to head on over to the house of God to worship God and to hear from Him through the reading and preaching of His Word. Friends, I wish that we would deliberately attend worship services, and deliberately expect to see God there, deliberately lift up holy hands to Him and worship His holy name, and be ready to give an account to the world of how real our God is to us. Let’s not be distracted by everything else we see around us, that we totally miss the purpose of why we go to church altogether. Jesus said in verse 27 and beyond, that His sheep (you and I) – those who know Him personally and consider Him as their heavenly Father, that we will listen to what He has to say – yes even through our earthly pastors and teachers. Furthermore, He reassures us that He will know us. That’s a very personal and intimate thing friends, for that shows me that when I lift up praise and worship to Him, He will know us, expect us, and receive our worship unto Himself. What a glorious personal experience that could be! So friends, if you are missing this intimacy with your Father, may I recommend that You ask Him to help you re-examine your life and identify any wicked way or sin that may be hindering you. Remember, He knows You and is expecting you. Please don’t disappoint Him friend!

PRAYER: Father, thank You for constantly revealing Yourself to us. Please forgive us for distancing ourselves from You through the distractions of sin. If we ever expect our family and friends to receive You as their Lord and Savior, surely it is incumbent upon us to show them that we have proof of who You are. With this ‘proof’ our lives will glow with the evidence of whose we are. Lord, may this be the case in the lives of myself and all those reading this devotional today, for I sincerely believe that there will clearly be outward evidence of the inward experience that we enjoy with You, our Father, our Savior and our Lord. I ask these things in the precious name of Jesus, the risen, ‘proven’ Son of God and Savior of this world, 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!

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