Saturday, May 12, 2018

Reading

Just a short piece of a book we’ve been reading for our morning devotions.

“Christ's first words to the people on the mount were words of blessing. Happy are they, He said, who recognize their spiritual poverty, and feel their need of redemption. The gospel is to be preached to the poor. Not to the spiritually proud, those who claim to be rich and in need of nothing, is it revealed, but to those who are humble and contrite. One fountain only has been opened for sin, a fountain for the poor in spirit.
The proud heart strives to earn salvation; but both our title to heaven and our fitness for it are found in the righteousness of Christ. The Lord can do nothing toward the recovery of man until, convinced of his own weakness, and stripped of all self-sufficiency, he yields himself to the control of God. Then he can receive the gift that God is waiting to bestow. From the soul that feels his need, nothing is withheld. He has unrestricted access to Him in whom all fullness dwells. “For thus saith the high and lofty One that inhabiteth eternity, whose name is Holy; I dwell in the high and holy place, with him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones.” Isaiah 57:15.
“Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.” By these words Christ does not teach that mourning in itself has power to remove the guilt of sin. He gives no sanction to pretense or to voluntary humility. The mourning of which He speaks does not consist in melancholy and lamentation. While we sorrow on account of sin, we are to rejoice in the precious privilege of being children of God.
We often sorrow because our evil deeds bring unpleasant consequences to ourselves; but this is not repentance. Real sorrow for sin is the result of the working of the Holy Spirit. The Spirit reveals the ingratitude of the heart that has slighted and grieved the Saviour, and brings us in contrition to the foot of the cross. By every sin Jesus is wounded afresh; and as we look upon Him whom we have pierced, we mourn for the sins that have brought anguish upon Him. Such mourning will lead to the renunciation of sin.
The worldling may pronounce this sorrow a weakness; but it is the strength which binds the penitent to the Infinite One with links that cannot be broken. It shows that the angels of God are bringing back to the soul the graces that were lost through hardness of heart and transgression. The tears of the penitent are only the raindrops that precede the sunshine of holiness. This sorrow heralds a joy which will be a living fountain in the soul. “Only acknowledge thine iniquity, that thou hast transgressed against the Lord thy God;” “and I will not cause Mine anger to fall upon you: for I am merciful, saith the Lord.” Jeremiah 3:13, 12. “Unto them that mourn in Zion,” He has appointed to give “beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness.” Isaiah 61:3.”

The Desire of Ages, pages 299-300

Sunday, April 29, 2018

Health in the Bible, Part 2

Have you ever heard the phrase, “You are what you eat”? Research has shown that what you eat affects the whole body, including the brain. I was just listening to an interview with Dr. Daniel Amen. He explained that certain foods actually cause the brain to shrink. Of course, other things, like toxins, will also do this, but if we eat food that contains toxins then we are going to lose brain power.

In 1 Corinthians God tells us that our bodies are the temple of the Holy Spirit.
1Co 6:19  What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?
1Co 6:20  For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's.”

Now, some will take a look at the context of that last verse and say, “Paul was talking about fornication, this doesn’t apply to diet.” Really? Why wouldn’t the same principle apply? The principle is that our bodies are the temple of the Holy Ghost. And that we should glorify God in our spirit and in our body. Hmmm. This principle would therefore apply to all areas of our lives, would it not? 

1Co 10:31  Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God.  
Eph 2:19  Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God;
Eph 2:20  And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone;
Eph 2:21  In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord:
Eph 2:22  In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit.


As the children of God we are to glorify God in all that we do. Some say it doesn’t matter what we eat. I disagree, because of the verses above. Science is beginning to reveal and has shown that a diet of vegetables and fruits, nuts and seeds and legumes, the very diet God gave us in the beginning, is the healthiest one. The Whole Food Plant Based diet is gaining foothold, through such programs as Forks Over Knives, The Truth about Cancer, Dr. Fuhrman’s Eat to Live, the Engine 2 diet with Rip Essylstyn, Dr. Colin T. Campbell, and many other doctors. 

We really are what we eat. When we eat high fat, high sugar, low nutrient foods we are setting ourselves up for inflammation, disease of all kinds, and ultimately an early death. We have been called by God to preach the gospel to all nations, and its really hard to do that when we are sick all the time, and can’t think clearly because of our unhealthy lifestyle. 

Rom 12:1  I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.
Rom 12:2  And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

God has promised that He will put His spirit within us to cause us to walk in His ways. Eze 36:25  Then will I sprinkle clean water upon you, and ye shall be clean: from all your filthiness, and from all your idols, will I cleanse you.
Eze 36:26  A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh.
Eze 36:27  And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them.

Jas 4:6  But he giveth more grace. Wherefore he saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble.
Jas 4:7  Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.

Reading

The calling of Gideon. God has a purpose for you!


"The Call of Gideon" by Pastor Ray N.
What can his story teach us about our purpose?
Lesson 1
God knows you more then you know yourself
Lesson 2
God's purpose for you supersedes your own self-confidence
Lesson 3
Don't be over-confident
Lesson 4
Do not fixate on yourself. Focus on God's promises. Here is one verse: Isaiah 41:10
Lesson 5
Take God at His Word.
Even through our brokenness God can still use us.
Jdg 6:1  And the children of Israel did evil in the sight of the LORD: and the LORD delivered them into the hand of Midian seven years.
Jdg 6:2  And the hand of Midian prevailed against Israel: and because of the Midianites the children of Israel made them the dens which are in the mountains, and caves, and strong holds.
Jdg 6:3  And so it was, when Israel had sown, that the Midianites came up, and the Amalekites, and the children of the east, even they came up against them;
Jdg 6:4  And they encamped against them, and destroyed the increase of the earth, till thou come unto Gaza, and left no sustenance for Israel, neither sheep, nor ox, nor ass.
Jdg 6:5  For they came up with their cattle and their tents, and they came as grasshoppers for multitude; for both they and their camels were without number: and they entered into the land to destroy it.
Jdg 6:6  And Israel was greatly impoverished because of the Midianites; and the children of Israel cried unto the LORD.
Jdg 6:7  And it came to pass, when the children of Israel cried unto the LORD because of the Midianites,
Jdg 6:8  That the LORD sent a prophet unto the children of Israel, which said unto them, Thus saith the LORD God of Israel, I brought you up from Egypt, and brought you forth out of the house of bondage;
Jdg 6:9  And I delivered you out of the hand of the Egyptians, and out of the hand of all that oppressed you, and drave them out from before you, and gave you their land;
Jdg 6:10  And I said unto you, I am the LORD your God; fear not the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but ye have not obeyed my voice.

The Call of Gideon

Jdg 6:11  And there came an angel of the LORD, and sat under an oak which was in Ophrah, that pertained unto Joash the Abiezrite: and his son Gideon threshed wheat by the winepress, to hide it from the Midianites.
Jdg 6:12  And the angel of the LORD appeared unto him, and said unto him, The LORD iswith thee, thou mighty man of valour.
Jdg 6:13  And Gideon said unto him, Oh my Lord, if the LORD be with us, why then is all this befallen us? and where be all his miracles which our fathers told us of, saying, Did not the LORD bring us up from Egypt? but now the LORD hath forsaken us, and delivered us into the hands of the Midianites.
Jdg 6:14  And the LORD looked upon him, and said, Go in this thy might, and thou shalt save Israel from the hand of the Midianites: have not I sent thee?
Jdg 6:15  And he said unto him, Oh my Lord, wherewith shall I save Israel? behold, my family is poor in Manasseh, and I am the least in my father's house.
Jdg 6:16  And the LORD said unto him, Surely I will be with thee, and thou shalt smite the Midianites as one man.
Jdg 6:17  And he said unto him, If now I have found grace in thy sight, then shew me a sign that thou talkest with me.
Jdg 6:18  Depart not hence, I pray thee, until I come unto thee, and bring forth my present, and set it before thee. And he said, I will tarry until thou come again.
Jdg 6:19  And Gideon went in, and made ready a kid, and unleavened cakes of an ephah of flour: the flesh he put in a basket, and he put the broth in a pot, and brought it out unto him under the oak, and presented it.
Jdg 6:20  And the angel of God said unto him, Take the flesh and the unleavened cakes, and lay them upon this rock, and pour out the broth. And he did so.
Jdg 6:21  Then the angel of the LORD put forth the end of the staff that was in his hand, and touched the flesh and the unleavened cakes; and there rose up fire out of the rock, and consumed the flesh and the unleavened cakes. Then the angel of the LORD departed out of his sight.
Jdg 6:22  And when Gideon perceived that he was an angel of the LORD, Gideon said, Alas, O Lord GOD! for because I have seen an angel of the LORD face to face.
Jdg 6:23  And the LORD said unto him, Peace be unto thee; fear not: thou shalt not die.
Jdg 6:24  Then Gideon built an altar there unto the LORD, and called it Jehovahshalom: unto this day it is yet in Ophrah of the Abiezrites.
Jdg 6:25  And it came to pass the same night, that the LORD said unto him, Take thy father's young bullock, even the second bullock of seven years old, and throw down the altar of Baal that thy father hath, and cut down the grove that is by it:
Jdg 6:26  And build an altar unto the LORD thy God upon the top of this rock, in the ordered place, and take the second bullock, and offer a burnt sacrifice with the wood of the grove which thou shalt cut down.
Jdg 6:27  Then Gideon took ten men of his servants, and did as the LORD had said unto him: and so it was, because he feared his father's household, and the men of the city, that he could not do it by day, that he did it by night.

Gideon Destroys the Altar of Baal

Jdg 6:28  And when the men of the city arose early in the morning, behold, the altar of Baal was cast down, and the grove was cut down that was by it, and the second bullock was offered upon the altar that was built.
Jdg 6:29  And they said one to another, Who hath done this thing? And when they enquired and asked, they said, Gideon the son of Joash hath done this thing.
Jdg 6:30  Then the men of the city said unto Joash, Bring out thy son, that he may die: because he hath cast down the altar of Baal, and because he hath cut down the grove that was by it.
Jdg 6:31  And Joash said unto all that stood against him, Will ye plead for Baal? will ye save him? he that will plead for him, let him be put to death whilst it is yet morning: if he be a god, let him plead for himself, because one hath cast down his altar.
Jdg 6:32  Therefore on that day he called him Jerubbaal, saying, Let Baal plead against him, because he hath thrown down his altar.

Saturday, April 21, 2018

Reading

Rom 7:1  Know ye not, brethren, (for I speak to them that know the law,) how that the law hath dominion over a man as long as he liveth?
Rom 7:2  For the woman which hath an husband is bound by the law to her husband so long as he liveth; but if the husband be dead, she is loosed from the law of her husband.
Rom 7:3  So then if, while her husband liveth, she be married to another man, she shall be called an adulteress: but if her husband be dead, she is free from that law; so that she is no adulteress, though she be married to another man.
Rom 7:4  Wherefore, my brethren, ye also are become dead to the law by the body of Christ; that ye should be married to another, even to him who is raised from the dead, that we should bring forth fruit unto God.
Rom 7:5  For when we were in the flesh, the motions of sins, which were by the law, did work in our members to bring forth fruit unto death.
Rom 7:6  But now we are delivered from the law, that being dead wherein we were held; that we should serve in newness of spirit, and not in the oldness of the letter.
Rom 7:7  What shall we say then? Is the law sin? God forbid. Nay, I had not known sin, but by the law: for I had not known lust, except the law had said, Thou shalt not covet.
Rom 7:8  But sin, taking occasion by the commandment, wrought in me all manner of concupiscence. For without the law sin was dead.
Rom 7:9  For I was alive without the law once: but when the commandment came, sin revived, and I died.
Rom 7:10  And the commandment, which was ordained to life, I found to be unto death.
Rom 7:11  For sin, taking occasion by the commandment, deceived me, and by it slew me.
Rom 7:12  Wherefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good.
Rom 7:13  Was then that which is good made death unto me? God forbid. But sin, that it might appear sin, working death in me by that which is good; that sin by the commandment might become exceeding sinful.
Rom 7:14  For we know that the law is spiritual: but I am carnal, sold under sin.
Rom 7:15  For that which I do I allow not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I.
Rom 7:16  If then I do that which I would not, I consent unto the law that it is good.
Rom 7:17  Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.
Rom 7:18  For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not.
Rom 7:19  For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do.
Rom 7:20  Now if I do that I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.
Rom 7:21  I find then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present with me.
Rom 7:22  For I delight in the law of God after the inward man:
Rom 7:23  But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members.
Rom 7:24  O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?
Rom 7:25  I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin.

Friday, April 20, 2018

Health in the Bible Part 1

In the Bible, God tells us through John the beloved, that He wants us “to prosper and be in health, even as our soul prospereth.” 3 John 2. In Psalm 103:3 we are told that God is the God that heals us. Obviously, God loves us and only wants the best for us.

In the beginning, in the garden of Eden, God gave us the perfect diet for health. Genesis 1:29 reads, “And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat.”
And in the very next verse, He gave the diet for the animals.  “And to every beast of the earth, and to every fowl of the air, and to every thing that creepeth upon the earth, wherein there is life, I have given every green herb for meat: and it was so.”

So, based on these verses, the foods that Adam and Eve were to eat were things like fruits, nuts, seeds, beans, squash, tomatoes, etc. All these are things that are have fruit with seed, or are seeds themselves. And the animals ate greens, herbs, grass, etc. 
After sin, God tells Adam and Eve, “cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life;
Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field;
In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.” Genesis 3:17-19

Now, in addition to the foods they had been originally given, they were to toil and till and eat the herb of the field. This could have included things we know as vegetables, like the green herbs, spinach, broccoli, kale, mustard greens, root vegetables, and others that only the animals had eaten before. The reason for this is not clear, though it may have been that because of sin, and because they no longer had access to the tree of life, they needed some nutrients from these foods that they would not have gotten otherwise. 

Nowhere during the time of Adam’s long life and that of his children’s, do we ever see them given a command to eat meat. Because of sin, it is possible that the people of the world, did eat meat and the animals may have killed each other as well, as we are told that God saw the world and it was exceedingly sinful.  

It is not until after the flood, that God allowed meat to be consumed, but with restrictions. “Every moving thing that liveth shall be meat for you; even as the green herb have I given you all things. But flesh with the life thereof, which is the blood thereof, shall ye not eat.” Genesis 9:3,4
Notice that the meat he was given to eat, was not to have the blood in it. Also, we know that it could not have been unclean meat, since the ark only contained one pair of each of the unclean, whereas there were 7 of the clean. During the time of Israel, they were given statutes that specified which meats were clean and which were unclean. Some will say that this stipulation was given to Israel only, and that it didn’t apply to Noah. However, the book of Genesis was written at the same time as the rest of the book of the law and since the statutes of which meats were clean and unclean were included there, there was no need to be more specific in the story of Noah, except to say that there were clean and unclean animals. 
One important thing to notice about the unclean animals listed in Leviticus 11 and Deuteronomy 14 is that many of these animals are scavengers and bottom feeders. Science today confirms that you are what you eat, and that applies to animals as well. Animals that eat garbage and clean up the oceans have the most toxic flesh on the planet. 

Several times in the Old Testament, God promises blessings of good health, and protection from disease and sickness, if His people follow the laws and statutes He gave them. Exodus 15:26 and Deuteronomy 7:12-15 are a couple of verses.

In Daniel 1 we see a good example of the results of following the laws of health given to Israel. Daniel refused to eat the foods of the king of Babylon. Many of the foods they ate were unclean, and also sacrificed to idols. Daniel asked for vegetables and water, and the result was fantastic. God blessed them with better health, and more wisdom than all the wisemen in Babylon. 

To be continued. . . . .

Monday, April 16, 2018

Reading

Psa 119:1  ALEPH. Blessed are the undefiled in the way, who walk in the law of the LORD.
Psa 119:2  Blessed are they that keep his testimonies, and that seek him with the whole heart.
Psa 119:3  They also do no iniquity: they walk in his ways.
Psa 119:4  Thou hast commanded us to keep thy precepts diligently.
Psa 119:5  O that my ways were directed to keep thy statutes!
Psa 119:6  Then shall I not be ashamed, when I have respect unto all thy commandments.
Psa 119:7  I will praise thee with uprightness of heart, when I shall have learned thy righteousjudgments.
Psa 119:8  I will keep thy statutes: O forsake me not utterly.
Psa 119:9  BETH. Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? by taking heed theretoaccording to thy word.
Psa 119:10  With my whole heart have I sought thee: O let me not wander from thy commandments.
Psa 119:11  Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.
Psa 119:12  Blessed art thou, O LORD: teach me thy statutes.
Psa 119:13  With my lips have I declared all the judgments of thy mouth.
Psa 119:14  I have rejoiced in the way of thy testimonies, as much as in all riches.
Psa 119:15  I will meditate in thy precepts, and have respect unto thy ways.
Psa 119:16  I will delight myself in thy statutes: I will not forget thy word.
Psa 119:17  GIMEL. Deal bountifully with thy servant, that I may live, and keep thy word.
Psa 119:18  Open thou mine eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of thy law.
Psa 119:19  am a stranger in the earth: hide not thy commandments from me.
Psa 119:20  My soul breaketh for the longing that it hath unto thy judgments at all times.
Psa 119:21  Thou hast rebuked the proud that arecursed, which do err from thy commandments.
Psa 119:22  Remove from me reproach and contempt; for I have kept thy testimonies.
Psa 119:23  Princes also did sit and speak against me: but thy servant did meditate in thy statutes.
Psa 119:24  Thy testimonies also are my delight and my counsellors.

Sunday, April 1, 2018

Reading

Rom 6:1  What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin so that grace may abound?
Rom 6:2  Let it not be! How shall we who died to sin live any longer in it?
Rom 6:3  Do you not know that as many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into His death?
Rom 6:4  Therefore we were buried with Him by baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father; even so we also should walk in newness of life.
Rom 6:5  For if we have been joined together in the likeness of His death, we shall also be in the likeness of His resurrection;
Rom 6:6  knowing this, that our old man is crucified with Him in order that the body of sin might be destroyed, that from now on we should not serve sin.
Rom 6:7  For he who died has been justified from sin.
Rom 6:8  But if we died with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with Him,
Rom 6:9  knowing that when Christ was raised from the dead, He dies no more; death no longer has dominion over Him.
Rom 6:10  For in that He died, He died to sin once; but in that He lives, He lives to God.
Rom 6:11  Likewise count yourselves also to be truly dead to sin, but alive to God through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Rom 6:12  Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body, that you should obey it in its lusts.
Rom 6:13  Do not yield your members asinstruments of unrighteousness to sin, but yield yourselves to God, as one alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God.
Rom 6:14  For sin shall not have dominion over you, for you are not under Law, but under grace.

Slaves to Righteousness

Rom 6:15  What then? Shall we sin because we are not under Law, but under grace? Let it not be!
Rom 6:16  Do you not know that to whom you yield yourselves as slaves for obedience, you are slaves to him whom you obey; whether it is of sin to death, or of obedience to righteousness.
Rom 6:17  But thanks be to our God that you were the slaves of sin, but you have obeyed from theheart that form of doctrine to which you were delivered.
Rom 6:18  Then being made free from sin, you became the slaves of righteousness.
Rom 6:19  I speak in the manner of men because of the weakness of your flesh; for as you have yielded your members as slaves to uncleanness, and to lawless act unto lawless act, even so now yield your members as slaves to righteousness unto holiness.
Rom 6:20  For when you were the slaves of sin, you were free from righteousness.
Rom 6:21  What fruit did you have then in those things of which you are now ashamed? For the end of those things is death.
Rom 6:22  But now, being made free from sin, and having become slaves to God, you have your fruit to holiness, and the end everlasting life.
Rom 6:23  For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.