Friday, January 27, 2017

One That Worshipped God

           One That Worshipped God

                                      Luke 10:41-42
"And Jesus answered and said unto her, Martha, Martha, thou art careful and troubled about many things: But one thing is needful: and Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her."

Let’s go to a little village outside the city of Jerusalem. This little village called Bethany is where Mary, Martha, and Lazarus live. Jesus has been invited by Martha to come to her home and while He is there, she becomes extremely busy preparing for Hm. We all know how preoccupied we can become when guests come to our home and in Martha’s case, this was a very special guest, the Lord of Heaven was visiting.

Mary, the sister of Martha, finds a place at the feet of Jesus and listens to His every word. Martha, on the other hand, is absorbed in preparing for her invited house guest and is cumbered about with much serving. Martha is distracted, and frustrated over the unnecessary and extravagant details of her planning. She becomes so distraught that she complains to Jesus;  "Lord, dost thou not care that my sister hath left me to serve alone?"  If she complained to the LORD and rebuked Him, I wonder what she would do to other house guests? Martha then gives the LORD a command, “Tell her to help me! Don’t You care?” Oh, my!

The LORD answers Martha and tells her that she is troubled about so many things and is allowing anxiety and preparation to control her. What is it that Mary is choosing over planning and preparing with Martha?  She is desiring to sit at the feet of Jesus, honoring Him. Mary is making a choice in her life; to be satisfied in Christ and in worshipping Him, first. The true worshiper of God is the one who is consumed with praising and honoring Christ. How can we serve Him, if we don’t first, worship Him.

Lord, may I serve You with a loving and devoted heart, while honoring You as a true worshipper of Christ.

Friday, January 20, 2017

Turning Away From God

             Turning Away From God
                                     Jeremiah 13:1-11
Let’s go back in time to a prophet and priest named, Jeremiah. His ministry was extremely difficult and lasted for over forty years. During his ministry, he endured rejection, starvation, prison, dungeons and death threats. His divine calling was to warn the people of Judah that judgment was coming, if they did not obey God. They had turned their hearts away from the truth of the Word of God and from the prophet of God.

Jeremiah taught by using many object lessons and in chapter 13, the Lord had Jeremiah take an undergarment 200 miles away, traveling by foot, to the Euphrates River. He was told to bury the garment and return to Jerusalem. After an allotted time, God told Jeremiah to return to the rock and dig up the linen girdle. The garment was filthy and had begun to rot. God likened Judah to the defiled linen girdle; totally worthless in the sight of God.

When the people of Judah did not heed to the words of Jeremiah, he wept for them and became known as the “Weeping Prophet.” Throughout the book of Jeremiah he preaches, begs, pleads and weeps for God’s people to listen. He proclaims that destruction will come upon them and they will be taken into captivity by their enemies. They never take into consideration the words of Jeremiah and consequently, their beloved city is destroyed, the temple left in ruins, and the Babylonian empire takes them captive.

Jeremiah had a heart for the people of Judah–––mourning and weeping for them in their sinful state. We, too, should grieve and weep for those who have turned their hearts against God and who are dead in their trespasses and sins. This story is a reminder of the total sinfulness from which we have been redeemed. We should willingly, prayerfully, and faithfully share the wonderful gospel message of Christ with those who are lost and those who have turned their hearts away from God.

Lord, there is hope for the lost but only through You can this hope be attained.

Friday, January 13, 2017

So, Who's in Charge?

                 So, Who’s in Charge?
                                     Deuteronomy 6:1-7

The Lord is instructing Israel to teach their children and their children’s children to love and obey God. To listen and be careful to observe all that God commands them to do and they will prosper in the land. Though this promise is given to the Israelites, it is a principle of truth that we can follow in our attempt to teach our children “in the way they should go” (Proverbs 22:6).

We’ve all seen and heard children acting out their sinful natures in public. Uh-oh, wonder who’s in charge now? Ignoring the situation is popular in our culture today. Just keep shopping and they’ll loose interest. No, we’ve never seen that work, not one time. The screaming and crying accelerates and little Susie turns shades of red we’ve never seen to get her way. Mom acts like she hears and sees nothing. This opposes God’s intention for the home and the peace and tranquility for regular Wal-mart shoppers ceases.

Some parents refuse to take their children out in pubic. They won’t go to restaurants, grocery stores or most anywhere with them so they won’t be humiliated. That means the child is in charge of where they go, when they go and how long they will stay. Why? Maybe they didn’t read the handbook? The Bible tells them that they’re in charge and this authority is given by God (Ephesians 6:1-3).

So, how do I recover from this parental authority crisis? Our God is Sovereign and He’s in charge of all things. His design for the family is that He be first in our homes. Placing God in His rightful position begins the change needed to develop a home that is not child-centered. (Not to say that you’ll be trouble free.) Letting children know that some changes will be made and that you’re seeking God’s wisdom is a good start. Then, follow God’s plan for training children. Seek help from Godly people, read good books and pray.

Lord, help me to make changes that honor You.

Friday, January 6, 2017

Unacceptable Worship

               Unacceptable Worship
                                      Exodus 20:1-6
“. . . I am the LORD thy God, which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. Thou shalt have no other gods before me. . .”

The Israelites lived in a pagan society and were constantly being pulled away by strange gods or deities. God gave to them the Ten Commandments and commanded them to have no other gods before Him. Bowing down to any image or using any aid to replace God was not acceptable worship and is still unacceptable worship today.

Idolatry can appear in the worship of any person. A pastor, a Sunday school teacher, a school teacher, a movie star, an athlete, or even a family member. Christ said in Matthew 10:37, “He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.” We are to love Christ more than any person we may have a deep affection for and we are to love Christ more than we love ourselves.

Sometimes we worship the true God, but in our own way, or on our own terms––missing the whole point of worship.  If we are not worshipping God in the manner He prescribes, then we are worshipping Him in an unacceptable way. To truly worship God, the worshipper must be born again, regenerated by the Spirit of God. Jesus said in John 4:23-24, “ . . . when the true worshippers (Christians) shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him. God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.”

If we’re are not worshipping God on His terms, with a right attitude in “spirit and in truth,” then our worship is unacceptable and rejected by God. We are to worship God with a pure heart, clean hands and an obedient spirit which is acceptable in His sight–––bringing glory to His name.

Lord, I worship You in spirit and in truth.