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The Carpenter's Chapel (5)

Discussion in 'Free-For-All Archives' started by Jim1999, Jul 23, 2004.

  1. NaasPreacher (C4K)

    NaasPreacher (C4K) Well-Known Member

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    Tuesday, 14th December, 2004


    We now turn to the lessons taught in the classroom of Mr Grace. Before we even get to his instruction though, there are two things said about those who sit under his instruction.

    For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men. Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should soberly, righteously, and godly in this present world.

    Two aspects of this passage seem almost taken for granted. We are already to be:

    Denying ungodliness
    Denying worldly lusts

    Sadly, these especially at Christmas time many of us a hard time doing this. “Piety”, the opposite of the ungodliness above, is almost a bad word today. Even Christians don’t seemingly want to be know as pious. And “denying worldly lusts”? This time of year, which should remind us of the gift of the grace of God has sadly become the time of year when even Christian families indulge rather than deny the flesh. In the mad rush that is modern Christmas hundreds, and maybe thousands of euro (or pounds, or dollars) will be spent to satisfy, not needs, but our every desire.

    How important is it to you to “deny ungodliness”? Can your friends see the difference in your godly behaviour? Do they see you caught up in the mad materialistic rush to satisfy your worldly lusts?

    Think of the impact we could make this time of year if our focus was on the marvellous grace of God instead of the “things” of the season.

    Are we willing to take a cold, hard look at ourselves to see how our lives match up to the standard?
     
  2. Jim1999

    Jim1999 <img src =/Jim1999.jpg>

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    Wednesday, December 15, 2004

    A lord in Scotland gave his old servant, Donald, a little farm. The lord said, "Donald, I'm giving this farm to you so you can spend the rest of your life on your own property. You are to work it for yourself. Donald said, "It is no good to give me a farm. I have no money. I can buy no horss and cows." The Scottish lord looked at Donald and said, "I think I can manage to give you what you will need. And Donald said, "If it is you and me for it, then we shall manage."

    The scripture says, "I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me," and "My grace is sufficient for thee..."

    We are not sufficient of ourselves, but in union with God we can be everything. It may sometimes be a lonely journey, but it is never a lone journey. We take His guidance and His comfort and His prosperity and His kingdom as our own. In simple words, we wear His righteousness.

    Lord, help us to always be aware of Your presence, and that Your grace is sufficient for each and everyone of us.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  3. NaasPreacher (C4K)

    NaasPreacher (C4K) Well-Known Member

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    Thursday, 16th December, 2004

    I was so impressed by a selection from “The Valley of Vision – A collection of Puritan Prayers and Devotions” that I am pausing the ongoing study for today to share it with you – Roger

    The following comes from a selection called “Spiritus Sanctus” and I think accurately portrays what should be our constant desire for the Holy Spirit in our lives:

    Come as power,
    to expel every rebel lust, to reign supreme and keep me thine;
    Come as teacher,
    leading me into all truth, filling me with all understanding;
    Come as love,
    that I may adore the Father, and love Him as my all,
    Come as joy,
    To dwell in me, move me, animate me;
    Come as light,
    Illuminating the Scripture, moulding me in its laws;
    Come as sanctifier,
    Body, soul, and spirit wholly thine;
    Come as helper,
    With strength to bless and keep, directing my every step,
    Come as beautifier,
    Bringing order out of confusion, loveliness out of chaos.
    Magnify to me they glory by being magnified in me,
    And make me redolent of thy fragrance.


    What a wonderful prayer – what more can be said?
     
  4. Jim1999

    Jim1999 <img src =/Jim1999.jpg>

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    Friday, December 17, 2004

    Just this week, I took a gift to a young girl in our village. I gave her my old computer a couple of years ago, but there was no printer. We bought a nice printer, wrapped it from Father CHristmas, and took it to her home. The parents work hard, but are still short on funds. The young girl is in high school and runs around to my daughter's house to get printing done. What a joy seeing her smile and obvious pleasure. She made some banana cake for me as a return gift.

    As I thought about this act of giving; both sides, I thought of this story I told many years ago to a congregation as the children's story.

    In a dream, one saw the people placing their offerings in a basket at church. In the basket, each gift became what it was in the eyes of God. A little girl shyly placed a thrupenny bit into the basket. The thruppeny bit became a daisy. A little boy placed his coin into the basket because his father told him too. The coin became a pence. A rich man placed a gold piece in the basket, so that all could clearly see wot he gave. That coin became as brass. A young woman, willingly and cheerfully, placed a small coin in the basket. She gave because she loved God, and she gave wot she had. Her gift of love became a shining gold piece.

    Always remember that God wants us to give willingly and lovingly, according to wot we have. We must always give with a heart filled with love for CHrist if we want to please Him.

    Lord, may our love for You never fail.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  5. Watchman

    Watchman New Member

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    Saturday December 18, 2004

    “After these things Jesus went over the sea of Galilee, which is the sea of Tiberias.
    And a great multitude followed him, because they saw his miracles which he did on them that were diseased. And Jesus went up into a mountain, and there he sat with his disciples. And the Passover, a feast of the Jews, was nigh. When Jesus then lifted up his eyes, and saw a great company come unto him, he saith unto Philip, Whence shall we buy bread, that these may eat? And this he said to prove him: for he himself knew what he would do. Philip answered him, Two hundred pennyworth of bread is not sufficient for them, that every one of them may take a little. One of his disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter's brother, saith unto him,
    There is a lad here, which hath five barley loaves, and two small fishes: but what are they among so many? And Jesus said, Make the men sit down. Now there was much grass in the place. So the men sat down, in number about five thousand.
    And Jesus took the loaves; and when he had given thanks, he distributed to the disciples, and the disciples to them that were set down; and likewise of the fishes as much as they would. When they were filled, he said unto his disciples, Gather up the fragments that remain, that nothing be lost. Therefore they gathered them together, and filled twelve baskets with the fragments of the five barley loaves, which remained over and above unto them that had eaten.” (John 6:1-13)

    This is the only miracle that is mentioned in all four of the Gospel accounts, each giving some details. It was a deserted mountain, with plenty of green grass. The time was near the Passover feast in the spring. Therefore a year had passed since the events of John 2. Jesus used the circumstance of the large crowd to test the faith of His disciples. "Philip, whence shall we buy bread, that these may eat?" Luke adds, "But He said unto them, Give them to eat." (Luke 9:13) and Matthew 14:16 adds, "But Jesus said unto them, They need not depart; give ye them to eat." The disciples soon evaluate the situation and find that the only food available is a small boy's lunch of five loaves and two small fishes. Dr. John R. Rice lists several examples of little things God used: "Friend, whatever you have is enough if it is all given to the Lord Jesus and if He blesses it. A rod in the hand of Moses was enough to open the Red Sea, to bring a river of water enough for three and a half million people and their cattle. There was no power in the rod but God's power was available by faith. With one stone and a sling, David conquered the giant Goliath, though armed and armored as he was: God did it. The small pot of oil in a widow's home was enough to free her boys from slavery and enough to live on when the oil was multiplied. Pitchers and lamps in the hands of Gideons three hundred brought victory over multitudes of Midianites." (p. 133-134)
    6:10-11 reminds us that Jesus not only used little things, but that He did things "decently and in order." (Cor. 14:40) The people were directed to sit "down in ranks, by hundreds, and by fifties." (Mark 6:40) Then Jesus gave thanks and had the disciples distribute the food in an orderly manner. The leftovers were gathered on purpose to show the disciples how much God blesses over, above and beyond the need. Also, the leftovers may have been given to bless the little boy who gave. (?) Luke 6:38: "Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again." Those who had nothing to eat were "filled" and the boy who gave all he had to the Lord got back more than he gave.
     
  6. Watchman

    Watchman New Member

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    Then those men, when they had seen the miracle that Jesus did, said, This is of a truth that prophet that should come into the world. When Jesus therefore perceived that they would come and take him by force, to make him a king, he departed again into a mountain himself alone. (John 6:14-15)

    Many of the Old Testament prophets did miracles (Elijah, Elisha, and Moses himself), but Moses had told of a special prophet which would come.
    Deut. 8:15: "The LORD thy God will raise up unto the a Prophet from the midst of thee, thy brethren, like unto me; unto Him ye shall hearken; 18: I will raise them up a Prophet from among their brethren, like unto thee, and I will put my words in His mouth; and He shall speak unto them all that I shall command Him."
    They saw Jesus was this special prophet, and wanted to make Him their King, yet they never saw the need to have a Saviour. Notice that a normal man would be puffed up from the spotlight of fame, but Jesus knew their desires to make Him an earthly king. So He "departed again into a mountain Himself alone." Would to God that when similar circumstances come that we would turn to God for His counsel, instead of allowing the calls of the crowd to direct us. The same crowd that cried "Hosanna" as He entered Jerusalem would later cry "Crucify Him" a few days later.
    Greek mythology tells us the story of the Sirens. The legend says that many sailors that traveled a narrow passage would hear the sound of what seemed the voices of women calling out to them. Many of these lonely sailors would turn their vessel toward the sound of the voices, only to be destroyed on the rocks. It is just legend, but it applies to us today. Don't let temptation destroy your testimony and your life. Prov. 7:25: "Let not thine heart decline to her ways, go not astray in her paths. 26: For she hath cast down many wounded: yea, many strong men have been slain by her. 27: Her house is the way to hell, going down to the chambers of death." Mark 14:38: "Watch ye and pray, lest ye enter into temptation. The spirit truly is ready, but the flesh is weak." (Compare James 1:14-15)
     
  7. NaasPreacher (C4K)

    NaasPreacher (C4K) Well-Known Member

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    Monday, 20th December, 2004

    For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men. Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should soberly, righteously, and godly in this present world.

    Back into the classroom of Mr Grace for some more instruction in godly living. Remember back to the beginning of this section, the grace of God has appeared, not just for a warm, fuzzy feeling at Christmas, for a couple of important reasons.
    1) To bring salvation
    2) The teach us something

    Let’s see what else grace has to teach us:

    There are three lessons in the lesson plan for us to look at today.

    Live soberly
    Live righteously
    Live godly

    Sadly, too many Christian have confused liberty with licence. We do have liberty in Christ, but we also have a responsibility to live in a certain way and that’s what we are being taught.

    To be “sober” is to be under self control. A “grace living” Christian has learned to have self control. He is not controlled by substances, situations, or selfishness.

    To be righteous simply means to do the right thing. An older English version of this word is “rightwiseness” and this really pictures the meaning of the word. Of course, all of our righteousness is as filthy rags so here we are called on the live according to Christ’ righteousness which He imparted to us.

    To live godly is simple enough to describe. It is just what it sounds like, to be living as Christ would have us to live.

    That is a very short and simple list, isn’t it. But oh how difficult it can be in our own strength. Fortunately God does just tell us to do it. We are empowered to live this on life by “Christ in me.”

    How are you doing in following Mr Grace’s teaching?
     
  8. Watchman

    Watchman New Member

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    Thanks Roger; with freedom (liberty) comes responsibility.
     
  9. following-Him

    following-Him Active Member

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    Thank you Roger,

    God Bless

    Sheila
     
  10. Jim1999

    Jim1999 <img src =/Jim1999.jpg>

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    Tuesday, December 21, 2004

    A number of people have talked about pets when they died. All have shared the same sentiments, and surely we all have experienced the same thing. We miss them. We replace them. We get on with it. I look at scripture and read about the lamb and sheep lying together. It seems to indicate that animals will exist in the beyond. I believe that. I am sure whether we will identify Sport or Buttons or old Shep, but there will be animals. The next world will be complete and perfect.

    As I read these sentiments, the story of the Scottish shepherd came to mind. The minister travelled a great distance to vitit the sheep farmer. He was met at the station by a driver and brought to the farm. There the minister met the farmer with reddish eyes and tears still there. The minister asked what had happened. The farmer said, "I lost 65 of my best lambs last night. The wolves got in." The minister expressed his sorrow over the great loss of the shepherd. Then he asked, "And how many sheep did the wolves kill?" The shepherd looked surprised. "Don't you know that a wolf never touches an old sheep as long as he can get a lamb?"

    This reminds us that the devil works much the same way. He goes about seeking the young "lambs" of the flock, and we must do all we can to protect them. To educate them. To win them to Christ, and save them from the wolves.

    What an awesome task is before us throughout our lives; it never ends.

    Lord, we are reminded that Jesus was an infant before He became a Man, and he was protected and taught during those tender years. So help us always to be learning of Thee.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  11. dianetavegia

    dianetavegia Guest

    Very thought provoking Jim! Thanks for this today! This is so true!!
     
  12. NaasPreacher (C4K)

    NaasPreacher (C4K) Well-Known Member

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    Wednesday, 22nd December, 2004

    from - “The Valley of Vision – A collection of Puritan Prayers and Devotions”

    As I read these words this week my thoughts went to this Christmas season. Even as Christians we may be guilty of only paying lip service to Christ even at this time of year.

    Let us examine the words of the puritan writer:

    “I confess that thou hast not been in all my thoughts.” “All of my thoughts?” Sadly too often we might say – “I confess that you have not been in any of my thoughts.” Is Christ the first thing we think of in the morning and the last thing we think of at night? Does He get an occasional thought? Does He get any thought?

    “The knowledge of Thyself as the end of my being has been strangely overlooked.” Again, many of might say today – “The knowledge of this as any part of my life has been strangely overlooked.” Is serving and pleasing His the be all and end all of our lives? Does he have a part in our being every now and that? Does He have any part in our day to day being? Or have we relegated Him to church and devotions alone.

    Finally, have we ever truly seen Him as the fulfilment of our heart-need? We run about saying things like, “I need to finish my shopping, I need to get busy, I need to do this and do that.” Do we take time to say – “I need to spend time with my Lord, my heart is empty without Him.”

    May we remember the wonderful prayer of this unknown puritan brother over the next few days.
     
  13. Jim1999

    Jim1999 <img src =/Jim1999.jpg>

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    Most of the Puritans books can wake us up to what Christian living is all about.

    Cheers,

    Jim

    Good reading, Roger
     
  14. Watchman

    Watchman New Member

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    Good morning. I am catching up on your posts here brethren. I just finished all of my notes on John (which I convert into devotionals). Your post Jim was very close to what I have when it came to the part about "Simon, Son of Jonas, lovest thou me?...feed my sheep."

    Good points Roger. One of my favorite passages on this subject is; "Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on thee."
     
  15. Jim1999

    Jim1999 <img src =/Jim1999.jpg>

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    Thursday, December 23, 2004

    The old captain of the Merrimac was an inmate of the Pennsylvania Soldiers' Home. He was a skeptic, an unbeliever. The chaplain in the home tried to get him to read the Bible, but he would not. At last the chaplain challenged the old captain, "Read the Bible and mark in red anything you disbelieve. Begin with the gospel of John." The old captain was ill and confined to his bed. He agreed to the challenge. Every few hours the chaplain passed by and intoned, "Have you marked anything yet?" The captain ignored the chaplain.

    Several days later, when the chaplain stepped into the old captain's room, he found him dead, with the Bible open beside him. The chaplain thumbed through and found nothing marked in red. When he got to John 3:16, he found the whole verse circled in red and the notation: "I have cast my anchor in a safe harbour, thank God."

    I wonder how many have so read the scripture at the end and found God. What a waste. A whole lifetime of unbelief. We need to be ever alert to catch the young ones so that they may live a life of blessings in God.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  16. NaasPreacher (C4K)

    NaasPreacher (C4K) Well-Known Member

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    Friday, 24th December, 2004

    The Parrow family wants to take this opportunity to express our desire that each one of you would have a joyous time of remembrance the “The Word became Flesh, and lived among us.” – Roger, Mary, Jay, Beth, Caleb, Zeke, and Eoin

    A few years ago while on deputation we attended a Christmas observance at a church near Dayton, Ohio. A huge empty warehouse had been converted into an indoor Bethlehem. As we walked though the dusty streets on the cold December sight we experienced something of the sights and sounds of that city. Smoky fires blazed in the shops. Live animals added their own unique “atmosphere” to the scene. Suddenly, a couple of roughly dressed bearded men came bursting through the streets. “Come, we’ve seen Him,” they shouted as they grabbed visitor after visitor by the arm. “We’ve seen the Christ, please hurry, come and see Him.” Their excitement was real as they told everyone the things they had seen and heard. I still remember their spirit of excitement on the clear crisp night.

    In Luke 2v17 we read in regard to the shepherds, “And when they had seen it, they made know abroad the saying that was told them concerning the child.” The actors that night remind of how we should be responding to the news that we know about the Christ child this Christmas. Whenever I think of them I am challenged at what I am doing to “make known abroad” the good news of the gospel of Jesus Christ.

    If you are reading this and don’t know Christ as your Saviour, pleas, come with me and let me show you the Messiah!

    What a wonderful day of the year to make that news known abroad. How are we doing?
     
  17. Watchman

    Watchman New Member

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    Christmas Day, 2004

    “And when even was now come, his disciples went down unto the sea,
    And entered into a ship, and went over the sea toward Capernaum. And it was now dark, and Jesus was not come to them. And the sea arose by reason of a great wind that blew. So when they had rowed about five and twenty or thirty furlongs, they see Jesus walking on the sea, and drawing nigh unto the ship: and they were afraid. But he saith unto them, It is I; be not afraid.
    Then they willingly received him into the ship: and immediately the ship was at the land whither they went.” (John 6: 16-21 )

    The feeding of the 5000+ people was a miracle to challenge the faith of His disciples. I think that the bread and the fish did not instantly multiply into huge piles when Jesus finished praying. I think that He blessed the food and they began to carry the small portion to the people. I can imagine Thomas passing a basket down the first row and thinking, "I doubt if this will last very long!" But as the baskets were passed there was always a little bit more left n the basket. (Compare to John 2 in the example of faith of the servants of the wedding in Cana. They carried water to the governor of the feast, yet he dipped out new wine."
    Now we change from a miracle for His disciples that occurred in a public setting, to one strictly for the disciples. Jesus spent time alone on the mountain, one of His favorite places "to pray" (Mark 6:46). And when finished with prayer, He now goes to the ship. Matthew 14:25 tells us, "And in the fourth watch of the night (3:00 AM) Jesus went unto them, walking on the sea." (Notice that though Jesus was weary, He spent hours in prayer.) Mark 6:48 also informs us that "He cometh unto them, walking on the sea, and would have passed by them. 49: But when they saw Him walking upon the sea, they supposed it had been a spirit, and cried out." Remember the time after His resurrection, He walked on the road to Emmaus. A he disciples stopped for a place of lodging, Luke 24:28 states: "He made as though He would have gone further." Jesus will never herd us like cattle, but as the Good Shepherd, He will lead us and bid us to follow Him.
    The narrative in John says the disciple "were afraid" My guess is that terrified would be a good guess! They were probably glad that the waves had been splashing about, because after seeing what "they supposed it had been a spirit," (Mark 6:49) their pants were probably wet [​IMG] Matthew 14 then gives the testimony of Peter's short walk on the water to Jesus, but they were all rebuked for their lack of faith after they had seen the miracle of the feeding of the 5000 men.
    (Compare Mark 6:51 "And He went up unto them in the ship; and the wind ceased: and they were sore amazed in themselves beyond measure, and wondered. 52" For they considered not the miracle of the loaves: for their heart was hardened.") We need to recognize God's power, that, as the disciple found out when the storms came, we would call out to Him instead of trying to paddle all night! Their hearts were "hardened" as they did not allow the miracle of the feeding of the 5000 to change their mind or their actions. We too must be willing to allow God's Word to direct us, to allow the Holy Spirit to change us. The Potter's clay can be molded and fashioned as He wills, but when it becomes hardened, then any changes will cause it to break and be useless.
    My thought now centers around the fact that when they received Jesus (into the ship) "...immediately the ship was at the land whither they went."

    When does one have salvation? Eternal life? This may be stretching the text somewhat, but what we see here was that they received Jesus and they were at their destination right then. My friends, the eternal life Jesus provides makes us as good as in heaven when we receive Him. It may not be fully evident until later, but, in Christ you have it now. This is security. This is what Christ, born of a virgin came to do: provide us with eternal life. He says that no on can pluck us out of His and His Father's hand.
    You can trust Him today.
     
  18. following-Him

    following-Him Active Member

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    Amen.

    Thank you gentlemen for your recent devotions. I am catching up today.

    Praise God that Sam joined Rob, Mariel and myself at church this morning. I only asked him the one time and he accepted straight away. I expect Mariel's presence may have had something to do with it, but I pray that he will join us again and that the Holy Spirit will work in his heart to receive God's truth.

    Sheila
     
  19. Watchman

    Watchman New Member

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    Sunday December 26, 2004

    “The day following, when the people which stood on the other side of the sea saw that there was none other boat there, save that one whereinto his disciples were entered, and that Jesus went not with his disciples into the boat, but that his disciples were gone away alone; (Howbeit there came other boats from Tiberias nigh unto the place where they did eat bread, after that the Lord had given thanks:) When the people therefore saw that Jesus was not there, neither his disciples, they also took shipping, and came to Capernaum, seeking for Jesus.
    And when they had found him on the other side of the sea, they said unto him, Rabbi, when camest thou hither? Jesus answered them and said, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Ye seek me, not because ye saw the miracles, but because ye did eat of the loaves, and were filled. Labour not for the meat which perisheth, but for that meat which endureth unto everlasting life, which the Son of man shall give unto you: for him hath God the Father sealed.” (John 6: 22-27)

    Priorities
    There are innumerable things to do and things to buy and things to read. How does one choose between them? Consider the following priority items:

    Priority in awareness:
    Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. (1Peter 5:8)
    Note: YOUR adversary. If you are in Christ Jesus, you have an adversary. He can not snatch you from the Father's hand and rob you of your salvation. But, he will seek to destroy your testimony and, if possible, lead you astray. But, "Greater is He that is in you, than he that is in the world."

    Priority in behavior:
    "...cleanse the inside of the cup and dish, that the outside of them may be clean also. (Matthew 23:26)
    The thoughts of our hearts will inevitably control the words on our lips and the work of our hands.

    Priority in giving:
    And not only as we had hoped, but they first gave themselves to the Lord, and then to us by the will of God.
    (2Corinthians 8:5)
    One's possessions, talents, time, and all other resources belong to the Lord, but such gifts are acceptable to the God only when offered by one whose heart has been given to Him fully.

    Priority in witness:
    For I delivered to you first of all that which I received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures. (1Corinthians 15:3-4)
    A lost and dying world does not need more of man's philosophy, but Jesus Christ and Him crucified.

    Priority in concern:
    Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men. (1Timothy 2:1)

    Finally, as the Lord Jesus Himself has commanded, our first priority in every decision should be to do that which honors the Kingdom of Christ and His righteousness.
     
  20. Jim1999

    Jim1999 <img src =/Jim1999.jpg>

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    Monday, December 27, 2004

    The recent tidal waves in the Far East reminded me of the story about the two Japanese girls and how they reacted after a devastating earthquake in Japan. The two girls were sharing experiences. The first girl said, "As soon as the earthquake was over, I went with my parents to the Buddhist Temple. There were many, many people there. They were all silent and hopeless as they walked by the god idol. My parents just looked at the god and scowled. What did you do?" she askeded of the other.

    As soon as the earthquake was over, I went with my parents to a service held by the Christian missionary. The people there just looked up to God in heaven, and sang! They sang,

    "How firm a foundation, ye saints of the Lord,
    Is laid for your faith in His excellent Word!"

    How do we face trials and tribulations. Do we just march before God scowling, or do we sing praises to Him?

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
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