Simple Words Powered By The Holy Spirit

Ever find yourself listening to a speaker whose education shone through his words, but his message was just beyond your understanding? As a total opposite experience, have you sat under the preaching of an old man who was never blessed with a lot of education, but He had a very deep relationship with Jesus, the One whom he spoke about? Let’s think about Paul, who faced an audience for whom he had to simplify his message. It may teach us something about speaking so that the masses would understand, rather than to impress the professors in the audience!

DATE POSTED Wednesday, 2022-04-27
WRITTEN AT: Citra, FL

SCRIPTURE FROM: 1 Corinthians 2:1-5
TRANSLATION: Living Bible (TLB)

BIBLE TEXT: Dear brothers, even when I first came to you I didn’t use lofty words and brilliant ideas to tell you God’s message. For I decided that I would speak only of Jesus Christ and his death on the cross. I came to you in weakness—timid and trembling. And my preaching was very plain, not with a lot of oratory and human wisdom, but the Holy Spirit’s power was in my words, proving to those who heard them that the message was from God. I did this because I wanted your faith to stand firmly upon God, not on man’s great ideas.

APPLICATION: Praise God for those who have been persistent and successful throughout their years of education, and have shown initiative to excel and learn even more about a particular trade. Often we might step back and congratulate them, for their gifts help them excel in their jobs. In our biblical account of Paul, we must realize that He had just come from Corinth where we see him going to Mars Hill in the city of Athens, gathering with the intelligent students of the day to discuss with one another about the happenings of their day and place, and as in Paul’s case, to teach and preach the Word of God. Often this discussion and philosophy would serve only to help the very top students of the day, because the success of his sermon was very minimal in reaching the actual hearts of the lost and uneducated. Commentaries believe that this intellectual time by Paul failed in his mission to teach and preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Coming now to Corinth, Paul was touched by God to speak the truth of the Word to the common person, and not be so concerned about impressing just the highly educated. This helps to explain why Paul placed aside his oratory skills and instead sought the help of the Holy Spirit and the heart of God for His people. I believe it is evident that God uses hearts to touch hearts, for eloquent words often fall by the wayside. Does this still happen in our churches today? Of course this continues. I sincerely believe that it is often not intentional, as we all tend to speak at the level that we would normally communicate in life. So I believe that it takes the power of God to actually help a teacher or preacher to simplify his message so that those in attendance would understand and apply the message to their lives. After all, why study and labor over a lesson or a sermon, if it will fall on deaf ears, or is not understood by those listening. Friends, that could also happen in any of our lives. For those who have attended church and been under the listening of thousands of sermons or Bible studies, we have learned a language that only fellow Christians truly understand. How then can we speak to an unchurched, unbeliever, who knows nothing about our special language? The important thing that comes out in this lesson today is that Paul sought the help and power of the Holy Spirit, and I am convinced that the Holy Spirit not only knows what we need to simplify, but He also knows the level at which the hearer needs to understand. Begging God for the wisdom on what to say to those who need to hear, is only one part of the equation. We should also ask God to bless us with an understanding heart – one that will identify with our audience and help us to become one with them. God’s messenger who could teach His Word is a unique and amazing thing, but to also find one who could simplify it so that even the uneducated, unsaved, needy person who might be weak in their faith, is nothing less that miraculous. May God bless the messenger who is attentive to the Holy Spirit in teaching and preaching the Word of God in simplicity and clarity!

BLESSING(S) NOTED: To understand God’s Word is far more beneficial than to listen to many eloquent words that do not clearly teach us the picture that God wants painted in our hearts and minds.

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, thank You for leaving us Your Word, and also the Holy Spirit to bless us in our understanding of it. Please help us to always be mindful of the hearer when we try to witness, teach and preach, so that the world will know about You and their need for salvation, and not just be impressed with our level of education. Thank You for our educators, and for where they have brought us to scholastically. Please help us to reach family and friends from all walks of life and varied levels of education. Holy Spirit, please help us to always understand what our audience knows about our Father, so that our teaching and our witness will result in the unsaved receiving Jesus, spiritual growth and in productive fruit. Please open the heart of our hearers so that they will desire to know more about the Jesus we love, adore and serve. AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog might indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. You may also visit me on Spotify and listen to Nuggets while you’re out and about. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

Don’t Be A Stumbling Block

In verses 24-26, Paul showed the people how God had turned some of the Jews away from the Gospel, so that the Gentiles would have a better opportunity of accepting Him. And although that was only temporary, it served the specific intention of God. In verses 33-34 Paul is celebrating the wisdom of God as he reflects back. Together this Scripture should cause us to remember that God was, still is, and always will be in charge of His creation. It seems that churches today may be hindered by some who feel like they are in charge, as they seek to gain recognition and power. As we meditate, let us look to our Creator and sustainer of earth for what He might accomplish and how we might become involved in His work!

SCRIPTURE  FROM:   Romans 11:25-26; 33-34 (TLB)

TEXT: 25 I want you to know about this truth from God, dear brothers, so that you will not feel proud and start bragging. Yes, it is true that some of the Jews have set themselves against the Gospel now, but this will last only until all of you Gentiles have come to Christ—those of you who will. 26 And then all Israel will be saved…..

33 Oh, what a wonderful God we have! How great are his wisdom and knowledge and riches! How impossible it is for us to understand his decisions and his methods! 34 For who among us can know the mind of the Lord? ……

APPLICATION:   As I meditated on the Word of God, I was reminded, in awe, of His great wisdom, and His awesome power to fulfill His Godly purpose. This particular Scripture reminded me of a sad story, but one that brought awesome results. Many years ago, my cousin, a young man about 35 years old, was electrocuted and fell to his death from a roadside electric pole. The mourning of that mother, my aunt, could be heard over most of the small town. However, before the sun set the following day, my dad (brother to the grieving mother) had surrendered his heart to Jesus! He then became a Godly influence to his five children until the day he died. What happened in this Scripture today, also reminds me an awful lot of our churches today, for it almost seems like the movement of Christ has been slowed down and possibly even dwindled some, and I wonder if it is not God dealing more intensely in the hearts of so many that are totally lost. This may not make total sense to everyone, but I wonder if God is not saying to our churches: ‘put away selfish desires, prejudices and pride. Remember, your wisdom is nothing compared to the wisdom of our awesome God. For people to gain wisdom from and in you will teach them very little however, to know Christ will gain them all eternity’. The Bible reminds us that God’s ways and thoughts are way beyond our own, so that tells me that I can’t possibly understand all that He’s up to. However, I know from the Word that God made us all to worship and adore Him, so shouldn’t our every effort be in seeking ways to know Him better, accept Him more fully and worship Him in total surrender to self and this wicked world? It just seems like we are currently facing the same dilemma that Jesus spoke of in our Scripture verses today. For we hate to look at the evening news because of all the crime, violence and acts of hatred that fills our news portals, while churches are closing their doors in record numbers because of non-attendance, lack of giving and leadership. We hear excuses such as COVID, or the effects of war, but friends, we must remember that Jesus is coming back soon to collect His church. Can you even fathom how few will be taken up to glory with Him, compared to the huge population of earth? To the church, I would say with great urgency that people need the Lord. The Gentile population has grown, and unless we who are Christian, stand firm in our faith, lift up the banner of God so that the lost may recognize God in His greatness and accept Him as Lord, then there will be a massive divide on the day that Christ returns to take His bride away with Him. It would hurt my heart to think that God may have to push Christians aside, so that the unsaved may find Jesus Christ. Unfortunately, I have family and friends that I believe will be left behind if they remain unchanged. Assuming that many of you are in a similar position, I would encourage you to join me in praying to the God of this universe for a great movement upon our land. Oh that Jesus may rule and reign in our personal lives, our families, our churches, our communities and in our nations around the world, so that the people will know and believe in the sacrificial lamb of God – Jesus Christ. May the God of this universe become known as Everlasting King of this universe!

PRAYER:   Lord You are good and Your mercies endureth forever! In our Scripture today, we are reminded that although You created us to worship You, many refuse to do so. You created us in Your likeness hoping that we would live in similar fashion to Your example while here on earth, yet there are many who mock and scorn You and Your children, much like what occurred in times past. The warning signs of Your return are evident Lord, and we thank You for promising us that You will return for Your children! Heavenly Father, please soften the hearts of Your children, so that Your churches may be filled to capacity with worshipers longing to draw close to their Creator, our Everlasting God, and may this impact the unsaved like never before. 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 are not already connected in a local Bible teaching church, let me encourage you to find one so that you may grow in the love and stature of the King of all kings. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!

You Must Ask For It

Jesus loves us beyond anything we could ever imagine, and although He gave up His very life so that we might be saved from the penalty of sin, yet He stands ready to do even more for us. He said in our Scripture today, ‘just ask in His name, and He will do it’. Only a God like ours, who loves unconditionally, and who always keeps His word, would be willing to listen to the cries of mortal man. Stay with me as we look deeper into this Scripture today!

DATE POSTED Wednesday, 2021-11-17
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

SCRIPTURE FROM: John 14:12-14
TRANSLATION: The Voice Translation (Voice)

BIBLE TEXT: 12 I tell you the truth: whoever believes in Me will be able to do what I have done, but they will do even greater things, because I will return to be with the Father. 13 Whatever you ask for in My name, I will do it so that the Father will get glory from the Son. 14 Let Me say it again: if you ask for anything in My name, I will do it.

APPLICATION: Ever noticed that a young son may go and ask his friend of equal age to do something with him that he and his dad had been discussing, but because the friend was not involved in the discussion, he shows little to no interest. However, when the son adds that his dad ordered him to proceed with, and complete the project at his very earliest, the friend yields out of respect to the father. Jesus had just introduced the Comforter to His disciples as He (Jesus) prepared Himself to go and be with the Father. Jesus assured His disciples, as He still assures us today, that He will be sitting at the right hand of the Father interceding for us, and that He will receive glory from the Father as His children carries on His work here on earth with the help of the Comforter, or the Holy Spirit. Notice that great emphasis is directed to the fact that not only will we have power to do the things that Jesus did, but Jesus insisted that we will do even greater things than He (Jesus) did while here on earth. Fellow believers, we must never lose sight of who we are representing, and whose power resides within us, enabling us to do mighty works because of Jesus! Remember that in Acts 19:13-16 there were some who went around trying to cast out demons in Jesus’ name, but even the demons recognized that they were not of Jesus and not speaking on His behalf. Friends, it is safe to say, based on the Word of God, that if any miraculous work is to be done, it will be the power, and the work of Jesus Christ portrayed through us to do the work, with the results being totally for His glory. I believe that there are two important things to remember about being blessed with the power of Jesus as He works miraculously through us: (1) Doing the work of the Lord, demonstrates our love for Him, and nothing that we may be able to brag about, or benefit from personally; and (2) Miracles are performed in order to bring people to a full knowledge of Jesus Christ. Not for any gain of ourselves, and not for the purpose of relieving our friends from some earthly burden, but that they might know Jesus as their Lord and personal Savior. Please note that there is nothing mentioned about the obedient servant who God uses to stand in His stead and allow His miracles to be transmitted through. But I can assure you that for those who will do this, we will be blessed beyond anything words can describe. To God be the glory for all the great things He can do through even us who believe in Him, and are willing to be used by Him!

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, I believe it is easy for us to recognize our powerlessness and know that we can do nothing miraculous by ourselves. However, I also believe that there are times that our ego steps in and we want so badly to see our friends overcome obstacles that we tend to jump in there and pray peace and/or healing over them so they could return to a sense of normalcy. I was recently reminded by a pastor when He said that we could very easily step in the way of You actually disciplining someone, by trying to humanly help them correct or overcome their situation. This scripture has once again opened my eyes to the fact that we must be so driven by the Spirit of God that the things we say and the things we do, would be perfectly aligned with His will and His purpose. I also believe that if the Holy Spirit leads us to a miraculous scenario with our friends, it will only serve to demonstrate the perfect love of God for them, and bring them to a full knowledge of Jesus Christ! We must, in total obedience, always seek the leadership of our Lord each day so that through us, He may have His perfect will among our unsaved loved ones. Lord, I am concerned that there are so many in each of our circle of friends that don’t know You as their Lord and personal Savior. If it takes a miracle to convince them of Your love and power today, I pray that Your will may be done. Please speak clearly to Your children so that we may, in full obedience do Your perfect will. AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog might indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. You may also visit me on Spotify and listen to Nuggets while you’re out and about. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

Some Listen To God and Some Don’t. Here’s Why?

Jesus explains why one may sit under His teaching and not understand what is being said. I believe the same scenario is true with those who attend church and say that they got nothing from the service. Notice in the last verse above, Jesus said that if one is not of God, they will not listen to Him. I hope that you will read all the way to the end of today’s devotional as we allow God’s Word to take root in our lives and clear the cobwebs from our eyes of sin and the world, today.

Sunday, 2021-10-31

Bible Reference: John 8:44-47
Translation: Good News Translation (GNT)

Bible Text: 44 You are the children of your father, the Devil, and you want to follow your father’s desires. From the very beginning he was a murderer and has never been on the side of truth, because there is no truth in him. When he tells a lie, he is only doing what is natural to him, because he is a liar and the father of all lies. 45 But I tell the truth, and that is why you do not believe me. 46 Which one of you can prove that I am guilty of sin? If I tell the truth, then why do you not believe me? 47 He who comes from God listens to God’s words. You, however, are not from God, and that is why you will not listen.”

APPLICATION: If I had a talk on hunting, and you were not into sports, or if your parents never liked hunting, you would probably have no interest in attending my talk. Plus, if you got stuck in the room where I had my lecture, you would probably argue with almost everything I said. In our society today, we have parents who have no connection to God, so He is not spoken of around the house, nor do they make any attempt to take their children to church. But what if Jesus came to your town, and what if He was speaking at a local church, don’t you think that many people from your town would make a special effort to go out and see Him? They may want to settle their curiosity that this Jesus, the One who has always been the talk of your neighbors and friends – that He really does exists. But how do you think they would react when He speaks on matters that really hits close to home? Why Jesus may even say the same thing to our people as He said to the Jewish leaders – you are challenged to believe in me, and to visit your local church, because you have your sights centered on this world and it’s leader. You are being pulled down by your friends, causing you to be discouraged and with no desire to learn about Jesus. Remember dear one, that the message of Jesus is that of love, faith, peace and forgiveness. Friends, as you read today’s verses, you may assume that this does not apply to you because you never gave Satan control of your life. Please allow me to clear that up for you. When you are born into this world you are a natural being controlled by the leader of the natural world. And it’s not until you are introduced to Jesus, that you ever know that there is another, and a better leader. But the path to Jesus is one where each individual has to make a personal decision to accept the gift of salvation that He offers. So if a pastor, or as in our story today, Jesus, was there speaking, and He called you a child of Satan, it’s because He knows that you have not accepted Jesus as your personal Lord and Savior yet. I’m sure that you may be filled with questions as to what difference this all makes. The difference is huge, for if you maintain your natural stance and keep Satan as your ruler, you wind up spending eternity in the place he has prepared for you – hell, with all of its terror and total damnation. Conversely, Jesus has also given us a glimpse of what His eternal home looks like, and it is detailed in His very own written Word – the Bible. There we learn that His home is free from sorrow, heartache, pain and disappointment, and filled with the glorious light of His Father (God), which prompts endless praise and rejoicing from His people (us). So my dear friend, I pray that you will make the best decision, based on what I have shared with you. I pray that you will listen to the voice of God as He calls your name, and that you will surrender your life to Him. As this occurs, you will clearly understand what Jesus meant in the last verse above – you will then hear His voice and obey His commands, for you are His! If you have not made the decision I mentioned above, please read on to my Footnote and click on the links included. You will receive more Biblical help on making that very important decision.

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, please hear our cry today for we are Your children looking forward to spending eternity with You. Some may read this devotional today and are undecided about changing their allegiance from Satan, to you. Please tender their hearts today and draw them unto yourself, so that they may tear down the barriers that are preventing their decision. Oh that they will know You today, is my humble plea. Thank You Jesus for loving us enough to pave the way for our eternal peace with the Father. AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog at https://NuggetsFromGodsWord.org that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading or listening to this devotional, please go to the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and see all of my posts, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

Jesus Shows Up For Us When Life Seems Roughest

It is so encouraging to read accounts of how Jesus showed up for His disciples at just the right time when they needed Him most. Encouraging because He is still the same today as He was that evening when He showed up while His followers were in distress on the rough waters of the lake they were crossing. We are never happy about the days when we feel like things could get no worse, however as followers of Jesus Christ, we have assurance that our Savior watches out for us and will be there for us, especially when life is at its toughest for us. May we be encouraged as we meditate on God’s Word today!

Sunday, 2021-10-17

Bible Reference: John 6:16-21
Translation: New Living Translation (NLT)

Bible Text: 16 That evening Jesus’ disciples went down to the shore to wait for him. 17 But as darkness fell and Jesus still hadn’t come back, they got into the boat and headed across the lake toward Capernaum. 18 Soon a gale swept down upon them, and the sea grew very rough. 19 They had rowed three or four miles when suddenly they saw Jesus walking on the water toward the boat. They were terrified, 20 but he called out to them, “Don’t be afraid. I am here!” 21 Then they were eager to let him in the boat, and immediately they arrived at their destination!

APPLICATION: Unless we take for granted what each believer goes through on a daily basis, let’s not imagine for a moment that our situation is any worse than our neighbor or our fellow believer, and let us never think that we are really more deserving of a hand-up with all that we are encountering. You see, some might be very sad at the loss of a spouse, or a parent, or a child, while others might be overwhelmed to the extent of being frantic, or have a nervous breakdown. In the case of the disciples – they were terrified at the fear of the rough waters and the possibility of loss of life. However, our Christian Brother of Sister may look on life, and the worse types of scenarios, and some might become frantic if things are not going exactly as they had planned. Friends, I believe that we are all aligned with the disciples in our fear of being out of control, especially when life’s circumstances are beyond anything we understand or could control, There are times that we may need emotional help after losing a job, or losing a girlfriend/boyfriend, or when traveling on a boat or a plane going through turbulence, for we are out of control. A brand new scenario is occurring as I prepare this devotional, a dad is faced with having to decide on withdrawing life support from a 16 yr old son. He is totally besides himself, as he can do nothing for his young son. But there are several lessons in this Scripture that I believe may serve to help us today:
1. Jesus knew His disciples were in trouble, so He went to miraculous means to get to them and to help them. Let me remind you dear friend that Jesus knows about your struggles also, and that He will move mountains just to be there for you, child of God!
2. Notice that the disciples welcomed Jesus into the boat. Did they have an option? Of course they did, they could have done like many of us do when we see someone in need – we wave at them and we may wish them well, or we may say that we will pray for them, but we don’t stop to truly understand their need and help them lovingly and compassionately. But that’s not how Jesus reacted with the disciples in their time of desperation, and it is not how He will respond to us in our times of feeling like we are all alone in walking through life’s most challenging times.
In the Scripture we are told that Jesus will be with us always! Praise God, He knows when we are hurting; when we are sad; when we are lonely; and when we feel like there is no hope. This same chapter of John reminds us that Jesus not only cares about today’s struggles, but that He has a home prepared for us to spend eternity with Him in heaven. So there is a long-term plan for those of us that have placed our faith and trust in Jesus, God’s only Son! Let me carefully show you one important thing in this 2nd point though: Jesus didn’t just place Himself in the boat amidst His disciples in their panic, for He wanted to make sure they wanted Him there with them. Notice that they invited Him into the boat. And that’s the way it is with us still today, we must invite Jesus into our hearts and right smack into the middle of our lives, our decisions, our aspirations and our long-term plans. Throughout the Bible we are told that God is preparing a glorious home for us in glory, for I believe that our King wants nothing but the best for His princes and princesses!
The ball is in your court dear friend. Take heed from the disciples and invite Jesus in – into your heart. Regardless of how well you behave, or how much you give to the church, this is a required step for you to enter heaven. Invite Jesus in – TODAY, my friend! Tomorrow may be too late, for death without Jesus places you in the pit of Hell with no mercy from Satan.

PRAYER: I can’t imagine life without options precious Lord, so I thank You for seeing the desperation in the need of the disciples. I am most appreciative of the mercy You showed for us as dear Lord, for You sacrificed Your very own Son so that we might escape the fury of Hell, and have the hope of eternal life in Paradise with You! Thank You Jesus for having mercy on those that choose to surrender their life to You and invite You into their heart. You have placed the ‘ball’ into our court now. Oh that all who read this devotional have a desire to invite you into their heart, and accept the Gift that You are offering us today. It is my desire to be with You Oh King, and I pray for that same desperate call by all who will read this devotional today. AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog at https://NuggetsFromGodsWord.org that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading or listening to this devotional, please go to the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and see all of my posts, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

How To See Jesus

Being short in stature myself, I always find the story of Zacchaeus fascinating! But his story shows us that we shouldn’t let anything, or anyone, stop us from seeing Jesus. The other thing to note is that in spite of the crowd, Jesus identified one of the greatest known crooks/sinners in the bunch, by name, even though he was hidden in a tree above the crowd. Jesus knows your name also, so take a moment to meditate with me on this Scripture.

DATE POSTED Sunday, 2021-09-26
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

SCRIPTURE FROM: Luke 19:5-7
TRANSLATION: The Passion Translation (TPT)

BIBLE TEXT: When Jesus got to that place, he looked up into the tree and said, “Zacchaeus, hurry on down, for I must stay at your house today!”
So he scurried down the tree and found himself face-to-face with Jesus.
As Jesus left to go with Zacchaeus, many in the crowd complained, “Look at this! Of all the people to have dinner with, he’s going to eat in the house of a crook.”

APPLICATION: Some may go to a church service at a very large church, and they will sit far in the back in, what they feel is, a very inconspicuous place, so that no one will identify them. They’re just curious about who Jesus is, and what this church attendance thing is all about. But here’s a thought for you to consider: in and of our own sinful selves, we want nothing to do with God or His places of worship; however when God is tugging at our sinful heart, we suddenly become interested in Him, His servants and His places. So let me remind you that when you show up to church, or when Zacchaeus climbed up that tree, God is already busy at work in your heart. yes, God may have used your parents to ‘bug’ you once again about going to church, but I encourage you to listen to what God is saying to you. Notice that Jesus needed no lookouts to point out those hiding in trees, nor did He need an introduction to the chiefest of sinners in their midst. Jesus simply looked up, confirmed His suspicions about a man being in a tree who needed Him, and He called Zacchaeus down, by name. Knowing his sinful condition, and knowing how he was frowned upon by his people, yet Jesus zoomed in on Zacchaeus and wanted to actually spend time with him. I love how this translation says that Zacchaeus came face-to-face with Jesus, because there was a day when I surrendered my heart to Jesus, and I came face-to-face with Him as He helped me make a total 180-degree turn from the sinful path I was on. I believe there are some who will read, or listen to, this devotional today and feel like Jesus is just looking over your head at the sinner behind you, because you are too far gone, and beyond the saving grace of Jesus Christ. Please allow me to remind you that Jesus is not surprised about any sin you might need to confess to Him. He also knows you by name, and He is willing to visit with you today, so that He might change your life into a usable vessel for His glory. You may feel like you have hidden real good from God and, perhaps, all of His messengers. Notice that Jesus found Zacchaeus, spent time with him, changed his life, and he and his whole household were saved. I believe that you may not be capable of imagining what all God might have in store for you! My friend, you are no less that the greatest preacher ever lived, you too could be a child of the King – the King of all kings, if only you will search for Jesus in all sincerity, and accept His call on your life. Please let this be the day you will always celebrate as your ‘new birth in Jesus Christ’! I want to see you in glory as we worship at the throne of the Almighty, but that will only happen if you surrender your life to Jesus, for He is the only way to heaven. Zacchaeus was bold enough to make this decision in spite of the riches he accrued from his crooked job, surely you can give up what you feel is important to you here on earth so that you might also accept Jesus and welcome Him into your house and family, God being your helper and guide.

BLESSING(S) NOTED: The current condition of Zacchaeus’ life had no impact on how Jesus looked at his need for salvation. He knew him by name and He knew all about his sin. Praise God, salvation is available to all!

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, I praise You for accepting us, even in our sinful condition, and You miraculously recondition us for the glorious meeting with the Father in Heaven some day! Thank You Jesus for identifying and saving our friend, Zacchaeus. Now Lord, I believe that there will be some who will read, or listen to, this devotional and they will realize that they are in a similar condition to that of Zacchaeus. Please soften their hearts, give them boldness and humility to seek Your presence and acknowledge You as Lord. May this be the day of salvation for many, I pray. AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog might indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. You may also visit me on Spotify and listen to Nuggets while you’re out and about. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

In Preparation For Your Mission

It appears to me like Paul was given great wisdom in helping those that he mentored in the ministry. In fact, I believe that God used Paul powerfully in his ministry, so that he could be an effective mentor to Timothy. I wonder who’s following in our footsteps? I wonder if our lives are suitable for others to follow, and they go out to be God’s representative and minister? Let’s look at some of the ways Paul felt prepared for the task at hand.

SCRIPTURE  FROM:   2 Timothy 2:14-17 (VOICE)

TEXT:  14 …... Warn them before God to stop their useless bickering over words. After all, splitting hairs does no good; it only ruins those forced to listen to their meritless arguments. 15 Timothy, do everything you can to present yourself to God as a man who is fully genuine, a worker unashamed of your mission, a guide capable of leading others along the correct path defined by the word of truth. 16 Stay away from ungodly babbling because it will only lead deeper into a godless lifestyle. 17 Once these empty voices start to speak, Timothy, they infect and spread; and soon the body is consumed with its cancer….

APPLICATION:   I’m not sure how many of us will ever be blessed to have the honor of mentoring someone entering into a ministry role, like Paul did, but we are often part of a church where new workers are called into ministry each year, and some of us may also be blessed to be part of a commissioning service for a new minister of the gospel, like Timothy was. This advice given by Paul is great for us to consider as we look into our own lives. Hopefully as we live these out personally, we will be in a much better position to say like Paul did in one of his other teachings: “now follow me, as you try to live a godly life” or as you endeavor to serve in your new assignment. You see, it is hypocritical to suggest that a new minister, teacher, worker, do some of these things, if we are personally doing an awful job at these things ourselves. For example, how can we suggest that they not get in arguments over words, or split hairs over individual interpretations, if we are so bad at doing that ourselves? Or that they should be genuine in their walk, if we are personally accused of living a double life? Or to not be ashamed of the gospel, if we are often embarrassed to have others know that we are involved in the ministry of our local church? So friends, I would encourage you to not brush this off by thinking that we now have some good advice to give ministers and/or workers entering into the ministry of Jesus Christ, but instead that we live out these principles ourselves so that we might give sound advice as we suggest that they follow, just as we follow Christ. I believe that only then, will the church of Jesus Christ see effective workers in the local church, and well prepared ministers and/or missionaries that we send out from our local churches. Lost people are anxious to see genuine Christians. Just as we aim to be exactly that, will we be effective and genuine in sending others out, just like us.

PRAYER:   Lord, please have Your perfect will and way in the hearts of each one that will meditate on this devotional today. May the words of our mouth and the meditation of our hearts be acceptable in Your sight oh Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer. May Your kingdom become richer as a result of us sharing our genuineness with others who will be impacted today, with the character and form of the One true God. AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog at https://NuggetsFromGodsWord.org that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading or listening to this devotional, please go to the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and see all of my posts, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

Only God Can

Since Jesus made it clear that the rich can’t save themselves from the pit of hell, we may ponder ‘then what about those who do good? Or those who work endlessly around the church? Or those who habitually attend church every Sunday?’ I believe that as we meditate on the Word of God today, we may be tempted to ask like Peter did: ‘then who in the world can be saved?’.

DATE WRITTEN: Tuesday, 2021-03-09
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

BIBLE REFERENCE: Matthew 19:23-26
TRANSLATION: New Living Translation (NLT)

BIBLE TEXT: 23 Then Jesus said to his disciples, “I tell you the truth, it is very hard for a rich person to enter the Kingdom of Heaven. 24 I’ll say it again—it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter the Kingdom of God!”
25 The disciples were astounded. “Then who in the world can be saved?” they asked.
26 Jesus looked at them intently and said, “Humanly speaking, it is impossible. But with God everything is possible.

OBSERVATION: Since Jesus made it clear that the rich can’t save themselves from the pit of hell, we may ponder ‘then what about those who do good? Or those who work endlessly around the church? Or those who habitually attend church every Sunday?’ I believe that as we meditate on the Word of God today, we may be tempted to ask like Peter did: ‘then who in the world can be saved?’.

APPLICATION: I had a good friend who argued that he had no doubt his dad would go to heaven, because he had impeccable character and was overly kind to everyone. Sounds logical, especially if you were in charge of who gets into heaven, right? As suggested in my ‘Observation’, there are other cases where mankind might assume that a dear friend is going to heaven. But in today’s Scripture, our eyes are opened to the fact that since this is God’s kingdom that we are talking about, then we must look to His Word for the answers on who will make it in. The disciples themselves were amazed that Jesus would refuse to allow an influential man who had lots of money into heaven. But the Scriptures are filled with wisdom on every subject that we could think of, especially on the subject of heaven. There is only one way dear friends. God sent His Son in a miraculous way as a baby, and His designed purpose was to minister while on earth, then die a cruel death just like a criminal. His death on the cross gave way to His resurrection three days later, so that Jesus could return to heaven to be with the Father. The death of our Lord was designed to be a sacrifice for the sins of all who place their faith and trust in Jesus Christ. This act of salvation became the one and only way that mankind could be forgiven of their earthly sin and made clean to face the Father when we stand before Him. You see, our money has nothing to do with the act of salvation. No amount of goodness will take the place of seeking salvation in Jesus Christ. And no matter how often we attend church, without surrendering lordship of your life to Jesus Christ, you will not see the glories of heaven. Jesus showed us in today’s Scripture that the rich find it virtually impossible to say ‘no’ to their riches and ‘yes’ to Jesus. I pray that as you meditate on this today, you will allow God to examine your heart to ensure that money, fame, good works or nothing else stands in the way of your surrender to Jesus as your Lord and Savior.

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, thank You for the sacrifice You paid for my sin, and the sin of those who seek Your Kingship. Please help my readers and I to seek You first in our lives and in all humility surrender any and all other allegiance. Nothing in this world is worth us missing the greatest opportunity ever given to mankind. You are my Lord and my everlasting Savior and I look forward to being with You in glory some sweet day. May all who read this devotional be settled in their hearts to make the same commitment to You for the sake of their eternal destiny. AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog at https://NuggetsFromGodsWord.org that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading or listening to this devotional, please go to the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and see all of my posts, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

What Will You Do With Jesus?

Have you ever gone to a concert, to a church, or to watch a movie, and was shocked by what the star, or church leader looked like? He just was not what you had pictured in your mind. In fact, there was such a difference that you found it difficult accepting what he had to say, or sing. As we meditate on the Scripture today, we will see an example of where something very similar happened to Jesus in His hometown. The people had to choose whether they would accept His ministry, or not, for He was just a boy from their little town. Nobody really special.

DATE WRITTEN: Wednesday, 2021-02-17
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

BIBLE REFERENCE: Matthew 13:54-57
TRANSLATION: Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)

BIBLE TEXT: 54 He went to the town where he grew up. He taught the people in the synagogue, and they were amazed. They said, “Where did this man get such wisdom and this power to do miracles? 55 Isn’t he just the son of the carpenter we know? Isn’t his mother’s name Mary, and aren’t his brothers James, Joseph, Simon, and Judas? 56 And don’t all his sisters still live here in town? How is he able to do these things?” 57 So they had a problem accepting him.
But Jesus said to them, “People everywhere give honor to a prophet, but in his own town or in his own home a prophet does not get any honor.”

OBSERVATION: Have you ever gone to a concert, to a church, or to watch a movie, and was shocked by what the star, or church leader looked like? He just was not what you had pictured in your mind. In fact, there was such a difference that you found it difficult accepting what he had to say, or sing. As we meditate on the Scripture today, we will see an example of where something very similar happened to Jesus in His hometown. The people had to choose whether they would accept His ministry, or not, for He was just a boy from their little town. Nobody really special.

APPLICATION: I believe that in our day, many churches thrive when the preacher is charismatic, the praise and worship team reminds attendees of a rock band, and the congregation could attend the services without ever being pestered about working hours and hours in helping the work of the ministry move forward. Unfortunately, many of these attendees may have been ‘burnt’ in some previous church/ministry, and they are looking for a place to worship without ever placing themselves at risk to be hurt again. But our Scripture today highlights the importance of setting aside any preconceived ideas about an individual, and accepting God’s messenger who brings God’s message to change the minds of sinners about the kingdom of God. I have served on many committees tasked with the job of finding a new pastor for a church. It is amazing what input we received from our respective congregations about what they wanted to see in a new pastor. Occasionally there was a congregant who may have desired the new prospect to be an excellent teacher of the Word of God, but way too often they wanted the needs of their own families met by someone who cared. Friends, I believe that when God sends a church leader or teacher to our church, He may deliberately send us someone who may not fit the mold we have in mind, because He wants our undivided attention. There was a pastor that I served under, who had a note on the pulpit to remind him every time he stood there, and the note read ‘Oh that they may see Jesus’. What a testimony of an honest man who wanted to be used by the Master in His ministry to the local church. I believe that in today’s Scripture we are challenged to walk into our places of worship with the intent to worship the great God of this universe and to hear how the proclamation of the Word may challenge our wicked hearts, so that we may be shaped into better soldiers of the cross that would enable others to see the image and works of the Holy Spirit – even in and through our lives as we go about our average day at work, in social clubs, in our families and especially when among unsaved friends. I believe that when we beg God to help us enjoy this type of relationship with Him, we would not be tempted to tear down our pastors or church leaders, who are still a work in process, by God. For we will quickly be reminded of that old spiritual ‘It’s me, it’s me oh Lord, standing in the need of prayer’, not just that old, dull preacher. In conclusion, please allow me to remind you that verse 58 reads: Jesus did not do many miracles there, because the people did not believe in him. Please don’t be guilty of shooing away the work of the Master in your life, in the life of your church, or in any other area of life in which you are involved. Look and listen to the work of God through His messengers, whoever they may be. To reject them, is like rejecting God who sent them.

PRAYER: Dear Lord Jesus, it’s sad to see that Your own townspeople rejected You in Your ministry among them. Too often we are saddened by the way our local pastors are treated, for we acknowledge that they are still human and will make mistakes as long as they are here on earth. Sadly, we are also reminded that You didn’t stick around to help your town’s people, since they showed no interest in listening to Your teaching nor in the miracles that You wrought in their midst. Unfortunately, I don’t believe that our people have learnt a lot from Your reaction to rejection, so I beg of You today Lord to touch our hardened, prideful, condemning hearts and cause us to reflect on the gift of personal sacrifice You offered for us, while we were yet filthy, dirty, sinners. Please help us to accept You and Your precious love for us, even when it makes no sense to us, or even if it is not packaged the way we may expect. Thank You again for making our way clear for a personal relationship with the Master of this universe, and entry into Your heaven. AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog at https://NuggetsFromGodsWord.org that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading or listening to this devotional, please go to the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and see all of my posts, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

His Name

It’s pretty miraculous how the birth of Jesus Christ came about. The prophets foretold; a virgin girl (Mary) was selected by God and approached by angels to conceive the baby; a simple, humble man who was engaged to Mary was approached to play the part of an earthly father to care for his espoused wife Mary; The most humble of people were selected to be the first to visit with baby Jesus – the shepherds. On and on the story went about one miracle after another that resulted in the Savior of the world being brought into the world as man’s Savior. This is what Christmas is all about, friends!

DATE WRITTEN: Saturday, 2020-12-19
WRITTEN AT: Paul B Johnson State Park, Hattiesburg, MS

Bible Reference: Matthew 1:21-23
Translation: Easy-To-Read Version (ERV)

Bible Text: 21 She will give birth to a son. You will name him Jesus. Give him that name because he will save his people from their sins.” 22 All this happened to make clear the full meaning of what the Lord said through the prophet: 23 “The virgin will be pregnant and will give birth to a son. They will name him Immanuel.” (Immanuel means “God with us.”)

OBSERVATION: It’s pretty miraculous how the birth of Jesus Christ came about. The prophets foretold; a virgin girl (Mary) was selected by God and approached by angels to conceive the baby; a simple, humble man who was engaged to Mary was approached to play the role of an earthly father to care for his espoused wife, Mary; The most humble of people, the shepherds, were selected to be the first to visit with baby Jesus. On and on the story goes, with one miracle after the other, all resulting in the Savior of the world being brought into the world as man’s eternal hope. This is what Christmas is all about, friends!

APPLICATION: As declared in my ‘Observation’, God went to great extents to bring His precious Son into the world, and throughout the Bible we read about all that He did while here on earth, and the whole purpose of His life here on earth. Of course we also know the ultimate reason that Jesus came, because we remember His death every year at Good Friday, and we remember His resurrection at Easter. The big question for each of us as we meditate on the extraordinary names of Jesus is: ’what are we known as?’ To our face, we may be called by our nickname. When our parents are upset with us, they may call us by our full legal name. Based on our habits and our character, we may be known as a thief, or a criminal, or a kind person, or a caring person, a hypocrite, or hopefully a man/woman after God’s own heart. Why all of these names? Because it identifies our character when someone is speaking to a friend and they make reference to us. Notice from the names, that while one name will drive that person away from you, one might interest them in knowing you, or at least speaking with you. Just from the name selected for you! Although folk will easily identify us based on the words we speak and with the tone used, but I pray that the actions they experience with you will convince them of whose you are. May the Jesus, born in a humble stable and lived on earth as the living Son of God, be evident in your character today and every day. Stay closely in tuned with Him through the Word of God and in daily communication (prayer) with Him, so that you may be ‘topped off’ each day with even more of Jesus. Keep it fresh and exciting friend!

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, I thank You for coming to earth as a baby, so that you would complete the purpose of the Father in providing everlasting hope for us. For there is no other way for us to see the gates of heaven without first accepting You as our Savior. You were introduced to us very early in the Bible, and many of us have accepted You as our Savior and Lord, so that we might celebrate with You one day in heaven! As we are reminded once again this Christmas of the hope that you bring, may we learn to truly celebrate even now, so that one day soon we will be comfortable in celebrating before our Father in heaven. Please touch the hearts of those who have not accepted You as Lord yet. May this be the first Christmas that they will truly be aware of the One whose birthday we celebrate! AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog at https://NuggetsFromGodsWord.org that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading or listening to this devotional, please go to the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and see all of my posts, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!