The Perfume of Christ

These verses reminded me that when we share the love, and hope of our Lord and Savior with others, it will seem like a death sentence to some, but to others it will bring life, hope and encouragement. However Paul warned his church, and God is warning us today through this passage, that the gospel will impact our listeners. For some it will smell like death, and for others like life. For this to happen, God’s children must share what’s inside of them. Let’s evaluate if we are openly sharing with others today!

DATE WRITTEN: Monday, 2020-06-08
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

BIBLE REFERENCE: 2 Corinthians 2:14-17
TRANSLATION: Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)

BIBLE TEXT: 14 …. God uses us to spread his knowledge everywhere like a sweet-smelling perfume. 15 Our offering to God is to be the perfume of Christ that goes out to those who are being saved and to those who are being lost. 16 To those who are being lost, this perfume smells like death, and it brings them death. But to those who are being saved, it has the sweet smell of life, and it brings them life. So who is good enough to do this work? 17 Certainly not those who are out there selling God’s message for a profit! But we don’t do that. With Christ’s help we speak God’s truth honestly, knowing that we must answer to him.

OBSERVATION: These verses reminded me that when we share the love, and hope of our Lord and Savior with others, it will seem like a death sentence to some, but to others it will bring life, hope and encouragement. However Paul warned his church, and God is warning us today through this passage, that the gospel will impact our listeners. For some it will smell like death, and for others like life. For this to happen, God’s children must share what’s inside of them. Let’s evaluate if we are openly sharing with others today!

APPLICATION: We associate so closely with family members that we can often finish their phrases in conversation! Many of us are employed, and we know most employees because of something that occurred, or was said during an encounter with them. For those readers who attend church, no doubt you will know many of the attendees, and some may have even become friends, in similar for to what I explained about employees. I believe you might agree with me that we walk away from certain encounters feeling really good about some of the people in the group, while we are still very skeptical of some. For those that don’t speak up, or acknowledge in some way that they were in a setting with you, I believe that you might walk away unmoved, or unaffected by them. But what about the undecided, or the unsaved? Don’t you think that they probably look up to those who appear happy in their relationship with the Lord, hoping that they could better understand what’s different, and how they managed to gain such peace? If we therefore have nothing to share, don’t you suppose that this friend might wonder if they misjudged you, because you obviously have nothing good to share about the Christ they thought lives inside of you? Friends, I truly believe that we have become so afraid of rejection (not wanting to hurt our pride), that we neglect to say or do the perfect will of our Lord. Are we ashamed? Are we embarrassed? Do you suppose that He might be ashamed or embarrassed of us for not sharing the awesome news of the One who rescued us from our guilt, shame and sin? Remember, He sacrificed His very own Son so that we might have the means of entering heaven with Him one day. There is no greater gift than that, my friend! I’m sure that many will respond that they are not a preacher or Bible scholar, so they stay away from trying to preach or witness. Be reminded dear one, that I would recommend that you share your story – about the One who saved you and gave you peace about eternal life. That will be way more powerful than trying to read the first 12 chapters of the New Testament to your listener, and you don’t have to be a theologian to share your story! I would also suggest to any reader that may have the gift of preaching or teaching, that if you avoid sharing the sweet perfume of Christ with those under the sound of your voice, I feel like you have just wasted their time and yours. In 99.9% of cases, they came to hear about Jesus Christ, so give them the truth of the Gospel without wasting their time. Also, the Word of God is intended for Jew and Gentile, rich and poor, man and woman, king and servant, so there is no respecter of persons. Jesus gave His life for all, so let us share His Good News with all, so that they may know and believe in the same Lord and Savior as we do. These verses does not refer to religion, Church denominations, or the like, so share Christ and Him alone – for His glory and our avenue of worship to Him!

PRAYER: Dear Father, thank You for giving us Jesus! Thank You for the awesome sacrifice You made so that we might enjoy eternity with You. There is no better news that we could share with loved ones than this. There is nothing better than meeting people who long to have what we have. Please Lord, make us bold and give us courage to gladly share our story. You redeemed us and made us fit for Heaven! Thank You Jesus! Now help us to share that good news with everyone that we meet. 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!

Do It Well – While You Can

I once heard a senior employee ask ‘What’s the least we could do, and still get by without being fined for missing the mark on that new regulation?’. I am convinced that this is the attitude of many employees who try to do just enough to not be challenged by management. What about your Christian life, do you have it down to a science on the minimum that God might approve of? The wisest king that ever lived was used by God to tell us that whatever we find to do, give it our all, because this might be the only opportunity to do it at all. Let us seek the wisdom of God as we meditate on this thought today.

DATE WRITTEN: Friday, 2020-06-05
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

BIBLE REFERENCE: Ecclesiastes 9:7-10
TRANSLATION: The Voice (VOICE)

BIBLE TEXT: So here is what you should do: go and enjoy your meals, drink your wine and love every minute of it because God is already pleased with what you do. Dress your best, and don’t forget a splash of scented fragrance. Enjoy life with the woman you love. Cherish every moment of the fleeting life which God has given you under the sun. For this is your lot in life, your great reward for all of your hard work under the sun. 10 Whatever you find to do, do it well because where you are going—the grave—there will be no working or thinking or knowing or wisdom.

OBSERVATION: I once heard a senior employee ask ‘What’s the least we could do, and still get by without being fined for missing the mark on that new regulation?’. I am convinced that this is the attitude of many employees who try to do just enough to not be challenged by management. What about your Christian life, do you have it down to a science on the minimum that God might approve of? The wisest king that ever lived was used by God to tell us that whatever we find to do, give it our all, because this might be the only opportunity to do it at all. Let us seek the wisdom of God as we meditate on this thought today.

APPLICATION: Whether you are an employee, or an employer that happened across this devotional, I believe that it doesn’t take long to recognize those employees who: can’t do enough for their employer; while others will do only enough to maintain their job and earn a paycheck; while others really don’t care enough about whether they keep their job or not, for they are just not going to kill themselves over a job! The company/employer will go a long ways in successfully achieving its goals with some employees, while battling to stay in business with other employees. But what about the church? Supposedly filled with people who are trying to live up to the principles taught by Jesus, yet undependable and uncommitted to the work of the Lord. Oops, too harsh? Perhaps, but folk it is time that we take it seriously what Jesus ordered in Matthew 28:19-20, that we are to: 1) Go into all the world; 2) Baptizing those that we come into contact with, and influence; and 3) Teach them to obey all the commands given by the Master. So please allow me to ask you a very pointed, but important question: Since accepting Jesus as your personal Savior, which of the three commands above have you flourished in and which do you struggle in? Does church attendance satisfy either of these commands? What about the banner that you carry that reads: ‘I’m a Christian’ – does your display of that banner count as obedience to either of these commands? Please stop for a moment and carefully analyze how you would rate yourself in responding to today’s Scripture on being a Christian, or obeying the commands of our Savior. Are you doing well with the honor of being a child of God? Notice that Solomon said that you only have today to do it well. When your time here on earth expires and you have been laid to rest, you will no longer have opportunity to Go, Baptize nor Teach those that need the Lord. Is your time well spent now dear friend? Neither in the Matthew reference nor in the Ecclesiastes reference does God give you the opportunity to ask the pastor, or your Sunday School teacher, or your elder, or a good friend to do these things for you. As you meditate today, let me encourage you to think about how you will respond to God when He asks how you did in these areas. Will you be proud to report, or will you be ashamed and disappointed that you never even tried? It’s not too late, ask your pastor how you might get involved in ministry at your church. After you pick him up off the floor he will gladly steer you in the right direction. He wants you to be involved in ministry!

PRAYER: Precious Lord, please forgive us for doing only enough to get by and perhaps look good in the eyes of our pastor. We are reminded that You sacrificed Your one and only Son, Jesus, because of Your love for us. Yet we find excuse after excuse why we can’t do something in your vineyard. We ignore the pleadings from our pastors for help in many areas of ministry. We find it impossible to commit to giving of our time or finances. Please embolden Your church and speak to our hearts once again about the need for ministry right in our own homes, in our neighborhoods, our churches and our country. Oh Lord, how will they know if we don’t tell them. Please help us to be so proud of our Father that we will gladly share about Him and our relationship with Him, so that You may be honored and praised even here on this old 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!

For Such A Time As This

I believe that if you had just read the title of this blog today you might jump to the conclusion that this is directed towards the expert that has a resolution for Covid 19, or perhaps the cure for cancer, or even the secret to making you rich! However, as you meditate with me on this, I would really like for you to click on the Scripture link above, and see how this phrase is used in context. Are you being asked to do something today because of the unique position you are in, or because of the friends you hang out with? Perhaps! Listen closely to your instructions and stop looking for excuses!

DATE WRITTEN: Friday, 2020-04-17
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

BIBLE REFERENCE: Esther 4:14
TRANSLATION: The Message (MSG)

BIBLE TEXT: If you persist in staying silent at a time like this, help and deliverance will arrive for the Jews from someplace else; but you and your family will be wiped out. Who knows? Maybe you were made queen for just such a time as this.”

OBSERVATION: I believe that if you had just read the title of this blog today you might jump to the conclusion that this is directed towards the expert that has a resolution for Covid 19, or perhaps the cure for cancer, or even the secret to making you rich! However, as you meditate with me on this, I would really like for you to click on the Scripture link above, and see how this phrase is used in context. Are you being asked to do something today because of the unique position you are in, or because of the friends you hang out with? Perhaps! Listen closely to your instructions and stop looking for excuses!

APPLICATION: I was once involved in a boating accident where it appeared like two young men would drown after being hit by my boat. However, God saw to it that a commercial diver was on my boat, and upon impact he immediately jumped into the water and saved the two young men. Was that diver catching a ride with me that day, for such a time as that unfortunate accident? I believe so. On the night that I surrendered my heart to the Lord, there was a gentleman in the audience of my church that knew how bashful I was, and although my wife had already gone to the altar to pray, I continued a tight grip onto the bench in from of me. Through God’s direction that gentleman came over and not only encouraged me to move towards the altar, but made that long walk with me. Was he there, in that place, for such a times as that? I believe so. We are going through some very tough times, where many people are dying, because of the Corona Virus (Covid 19). Where has God placed you during this endless lockdown period? Has He made an appointment for you to share your faith with someone in your place of isolation, or someone who might be in close proximity? I believe that the worse nightmare for you or I would be to lose a loved one that we wish we would have shared our testimony with, or shared the gospel story with. Let’s remember that we can’t save anyone, nor can we give them Jesus, but we are told in God’s Word to share what we have. The Word says ‘go and tell everyone about your Lord‘! As you meditate today, perhaps you will consider how you might respond if a message was sent to you today from God similar to what was sent to Esther: ‘perhaps you were placed right where you are, for such a time as this’. Esther was asked by her adoptive father to act in such a way that could save the lives of her fellow Jews. You might be reminded to act deliberately to help save the lives of those around you who could awake in Hell, where they will spend eternity with Satan and his demons, without knowing about, and accepting the love of our Savior who sacrificed His life just for them. You have the secret resolution that could help save lives, if you are willing to share, right where you are and with all that are with you. Perhaps it all was arranged this way by the Master, for such a time as this! Act now, won’t you, dear friend? Esther acted and was able to see the lives of many Jews saved.

PRAYER: I thank You Heavenly Father for placing us in appropriate places for times such as this. Unprecedented times, so nothing that we could have prepared for and booked our place to stay in advance, while we fight this pandemic virus as a country. I believe that we each have examples how You’ve placed us in certain places before for specific reasons, and in many cases we are able to praise You for working through us in those circumstances. Please do it again Lord? Many of us are stuck in places where we have a captive audience, and many that are in our group may not know the Lord. Oh that this would be a time where You are busy at work, touching the lives of our family and our friends that have no choice but to watch us closely and listen to the words You might share through us. May we be willing servants – like empty vessels that come to You daily and wait to be filled with Your wisdom, Your grace, Your power, Your words and most of all Your love. May they see the Jesus in our actions that we try to share verbally, and may our loved ones accept You as Lord – for now is the day of salvation. Into Your hands Lord, we place our humble lives and willing hearts, for Yours is the kingdom, the power and the glory, 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!

Never To Be Condemned

Most of us would prefer to never be condemned for something that we did. Perhaps we are a bunch of ‘crowd pleasers’! However, only those looking for trouble would deliberately do something that they know will lead to condemnation, or that they would be punished for. In our Scripture today, Jesus encourages us to place our faith and trust in Him, because then we would virtually step out of death, or a life filled with sin and destruction, into a life controlled and led by Him, that is a glorious eternal life that will one day result in meeting Jesus face-to-face, where we will worship He and the Father for ever! Meditate with me on this wonderful promise!

Friday, 2019-10-11

Bible Reference: John 5:24
Translation: The Passion Translation (TPT)

Bible Text: 24 “I speak to you an eternal truth: if you embrace my message and believe in the One who sent me, you will never face condemnation, for in me, you have already passed from the realm of death into the realm of eternal life!”

OBSERVATION: Most of us would prefer to never be condemned for something that we did. But we are a bunch of ‘crowd pleasers’ and easily lean to follow the ways of this world! However, only those looking for trouble would deliberately do something that they know will lead to condemnation, or that they would be punished for. In our Scripture today, Jesus encourages us to place our faith and trust in Him, because then we would virtually step out of death, or a life filled with sin and destruction, into a life controlled and led by Him, that is a glorious eternal life that will one day result in meeting Jesus face-to-face, where we will worship He and the Father for ever! Meditate with me on this wonderful promise!

APPLICATION: If I had a secret that I could share with you about something that will make you feel your best instantly, you probably would go to great extremes to implement whatever I told you! I recently had a doctor give me a shot, and he told me that it might give relief for up to 6 months, so I jumped to the thought of being pain-free for that long. But how often do we hear that someone has a permanent fix for all of our problems, both in this world and the next? Well, we have found such an eternal promise today in our Scripture verse, for Jesus promised us something that only He could fulfill. If you are one that might be having the time of your life, and you have no one in your family who are hurting or terribly sick at this time, then you might not see value in this promise. But I believe that finding someone like that might be very rare. Friends, we were created by God for the purpose of worshiping Him and lifting up His name here on earth. And that would be heaven on earth, had He had not given us free will, and a choice to do whatever we choose to do. For Satan is still roaming free on planet earth, and he also is looking for followers and attracting worshipers of his own. Because we are born with a sinful nature, many have chosen to continue following Satan, without much thought to where they will spend eternity. Fortunately some have heard the call of Christ on their life, and many of them have chosen to share that good news with others, much like I try to do through Nuggets From God’s Word. My message to all those reading this devotional today is that my loving Savior loves you and He cared enough about you that He made an unheard-of sacrifice just for you, so that if you would humble yourself and accept that gift, you will never face condemnation for your sin. And because there is no order of superiority in His kingdom, you would become His child whom He would welcome and love in exactly the same way as He does for the best pastor, priest, preacher or evangelist you could think of. This might sound extremely hard to believe or understand dear friend, so let me encourage you to get with a Bible believing pastor, or a trusted Christian who might help you with any questions you might have about this. Of course, I would be elated in having the privilege of praying for you, or with you, or both. Fell free to reach out to me via email. But now that you know the Truth, don’t throw it out with the trash, but act on it and be comforted in this wonderful promise. Only you could make it a reality!

PRAYER: Thank You Lord for loving my friends and I enough that You gave everything to show us how much You cared. Please soften our hearts so that we might humble ourselves and pray, and that we might surrender ourselves to Your perfect will for our lives. There is no one else like You, precious Lord! Please forgive us of our sin, and draw us unto Yourself, oh Lord. We want to be where You are, and we want to worship the One who cares and loves us unconditionally. We long for the day to be in Your presence, but please make us usable vessels for You while we remain on planet 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. If you are anywhere near the Sebring, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would highly recommend to you 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!