Sunday, December 10, 2017

GRASPING THE WIND OR HOLDING THE TRUTH

Today’s Reading: Ecclesiastes 4-6

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion).

 

Hierapolis was an ancient city located on hot springs in classical Phrygia in southwestern Anatolia. Its ruins are adjacent to modern Pamukkale in Turkey and currently comprise an archaeological museum designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. There are many architectural grave monuments in Hierapolis. The oldest graves are of the Hellenistic Period (1st and 2nd centuries BC). “BC” denotes before Christ. One wonders if Christ preached to the person memorialized here as well as the writer of Ecclesiastes. First Peter says that Christ preached to the imprisoned spirits who formerly were disobedient (e.g. the people of Noah’s day, etc. Read 1 Peter 3:18-22).

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.

 

Key Verse: Ecclesiastes 5:2

Do not be rash with your mouth,

And let not your heart utter anything hastily before God.

For God is in heaven, and you on earth;

Therefore let your words be few.

 

In Nelson Mandela’s book, Conversations with Myself, he wrote, “Spiritual weapons can be dynamic and often have an impact difficult to appreciate, except in the light of actual experience in given situations. In a way they make prisoners of free men, turn commoners into monarchs, and dirt into pure gold. To put it quite bluntly, Duggie [his friend], it is only my flesh and blood that are shut up behind these tight walls.” According to some of those who visited Mandela in prison, he read his Bible daily. No doubt he read the words of our key verse about “words.” I’ve read Mandela’s words at his trial before his 27 years in prison. He was very intelligent then, but after he emerged from prison, he was not only smart, but very wise with his words. Thousands of hours in a private and secret place can develop wisdom. Ecclesiastes is part of what is known as “Wisdom Literature.”

Mandela and John Bunyan both had prison experiences. In 1678 Bunyan wrote Pilgrims Progress while in prison. The word “vanity” appears eight times in today’s reading. Bunyan tells us of two men, Christian and Faithful, who visit “Vanity Fair.” Here they are mocked for their desire to proceed on to the “Celestial City.” Faithful is executed and proceeds to Heaven. Christian is remanded to prison but escapes and proceeds on his journey. For a good summary of this story click here and check out the fourth paragraph.

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, as I meditate on the words I’ve read today about “the tears of the oppressed,” (4:1b) and seeing “the oppression of the poor, and the violent perversion of justice and righteousness” (5:8a), I pray that the example of a Nelson Mandela would challenge me to change as he did during his 27 years of prison. Then may I do my best to change my world first, and then to help where I can to make change for the better in the world around me. I pray this in the Name of the One, who more than any other, changed everything…Jesus Christ! Amen!!!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

In my recent reading about Mandela, I noted that in his call to affect political change, he made a deliberate decision to be private in his expressions of his personal faith. He does put in his book, Conversations With Myself, the fact that he taught Sunday School at one time, and he reflects on his education in Wesleyan Methodist schools. He also takes considerable space in his book to tell the story of “The Trial of Christ by Pontius Pilate” (pages 223 – 227). Jesus obviously had a major impact on Mandela’s life.

Yours for grasping God’s eternal truths and never letting go, holding and speaking the truth in love,

David

P.S. The name of one of the entities that make up the Crossroads Family of Ministries is “Tricord.” This name is from Ecclesiastes 4:12b, “A threefold chord is not easily broken.” Click here for information about Tricord (try clicking various items in the “Catalogue” at the top, such as “Documentaries”).

Saturday, December 9, 2017

VANITY OF VANITIES

Today’s Reading: Ecclesiastes 1-3

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion).

 

This is the monument to Pius VIII in St. Peter’s Basilica in Vatican City, Italy. The Pope is shown kneeling, accompanied by a statue of Christ enthroned, with statues of Sts. Peter and Paul. Pius VIII was imprisoned in 1808 during the French domination of Italy for refusing to take the oath of allegiance to Napoleon. Napoleon, the Emperor of France, Europe, North Africa and much of the middle east, would probably agree with Solomon that “All is vanity,” particularly if Napoleon was asked about his life from his imprisonment and exile during his later years.

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.

 

Key Verses: Ecclesiastes 1:2, 3:11

“Vanity of vanities,” says the Preacher;

“Vanity of vanities, all is vanity.”

…He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also He has put eternity in their hearts, except that no one can find out the work that God does from beginning to end.

 

We cannot help but notice the repetition “the Preacher” used for his desired emphasis. The word, “vanity” occurs 37 times. It means “useless” or “empty.” The “preacher” has tried all life has to offer. Worldly wisdom, works, wealth, etc., as well as laughter and wine are all found to be empty. This can all be discouraging to us, his readers, unless we refer several times during our readings to chapter 12. We may want to read Solomon’s conclusions about life each day.

The word “time” is repeated 31 times in today’s reading. Time is short here on earth, but a ray of hope shines through with the statement that God “has put eternity in their hearts.” All anthropological studies done in every people group on earth prove that our human family is constantly reaching beyond ourselves and into eternity. The monument pictured above gets it right. Peter and Paul got it right. Pius seems to have gotten it right. Napoleon got it wrong, as is the case of everyone who seeks their ultimate values here and now in this life alone.

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, I pray that I will live every moment of my life with eternity’s values in mind. As I grow older, may I grow up into Your love and truth. I ask for grace to keep the vain things of earth in their proper perspective, always seeking to use material possessions and human pursuits for eternal purposes. Thank You for putting “eternity” in my heart. I pray that eternal values will also be in my head, my consistent thoughts and decisions. In the Name of Your eternally existing Son, Father God, I ask these mercies, Amen!!!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

Remember the TV show Hee Haw? I know one of the main characters personally. Gordie Tapp is the son of Salvation Army officers. I have no doubt that when he and Roy Clarke sang of gloom, despair, etc., he knew about the book of Ecclesiastes. In fact, that song could’ve been lifted right out of this book.

I’m thinking again today of the late, great man, Nelson Mandela. He had such high hopes for his people. It must have been discouraging for him as reality set in and he observed the rampant corruption that has become epidemic in the South African government after he stepped aside from the presidency. He surely tried his best and I commend him for setting such a good example. I want to commend highly our former Prime Minister of Canada, the RT. Hon. Brian Mulroney, for taking the strongest stand of any world leader for doing what was right in South Africa prior to Mandela’s release from prison, and after. God bless you former Canadian P.M. I’m proud of you!

Yours for filling the emptiness of life with the fulness of Christ!

David

P.S. Here’s the Hee Haw song I referred to (click here). While Solomon tells us that “laughter” accomplishes little, it is good for us. In Proverbs 17:22a, Solomon told us that “A merry heart does good like a medicine.”

Friday, December 8, 2017

CHARACTER

Today’s Reading: Proverbs 31

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion).

 

On display in the Archaeological Museum in Pella, Greece, is a golden leaf crown. This was created to resemble the wreath of leaves placed on the head of Olympic champions. Of course the Emperor had to have one made of Gold. Today’s reading should help us all strive to be the best we can be with God’s Spirit working 24/7 within us.

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.

 

Key Verses: Proverbs 31:10-11

Who can find a virtuous wife?

For her worth is far above rubies.

The heart of her husband safely trusts her;

So he will have no lack of gain.

 

Could it be that Solomon was describing his own mother and the wife of his father. David and Bathsheba’s first child died at birth, and Solomon was their #2 child. No doubt Bathsheba shared in the words of repentance found in Psalm 51. John Wesley, the founder of Methodism, believed that King Lemuel, whose name is mentioned in this chapter, was Solomon himself and that Lemuel was one of Solomon’s names which means, “One who comes from God.” Wesley notes, “Perhaps David and Bathsheba, as a pledge of their reconciliation with God, gave Solomon this name, along with others, to remind him of his obligation to God.” It’s very possible that in Solomon’s eyes, his mother Bathsheba became the “virtuous wife” he describes. We serve a God who redeems the fallen and who, by His Holy Spirit, develops character so that a person, made in God’s image, can change and grow into the “stature of the fulness of Christ.” For a New Testament reading check out Ephesians 4:12-16.

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, I pray with my whole being for Your help to fulfill all the potential that You desire to develop in me. Help me to be honest, virtuous and honourable. May the character of Jesus grow more and more in me, not by my own efforts alone, but by Your Spirit filling me, changing me, and growing me until I come into the “stature of the fulness of Christ.” Amen!!!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

Over the years I have read extensively about a man of character, Nelson Mandela, as well as reading his own writings.  Mandela said on one occasion, “One thing 27 years in prison taught me was to use the silence of solitude to realize how precious words are.” Reading this and thousands of Mandela’s other words has caused me to strive to do a better job of using words here on my blog. I’ve read that during his years in prison with just bread and water for breakfast, he would lift the bread to God and say, I receive this in remembrance of Your body, Lord Jesus, and with the water, “I receive this in remembrance of Your blood.” This would have been in keeping with his Wesleyan Methodist upbringing. Then he would be taken outside to the hard labour which they required of him. I saw a photo in a Toronto newspaper from just before Mandela was elected President. It was of Mandela, DeKlerk, President at the time of South Africa, and Mangosuthu Buthelezi of the Zulu people, kneeling together during a prayer meeting. A bloody civil war was averted, and a week later Mandela was President. Could Mandela’s deep and mainly private relationship with God have been the secret of his amazing strength of character? I leave this for you to judge.

Yours for becoming all we can be with the great help of God’s Spirit dwelling within us,

David

Thursday, December 7, 2017

A STIFF NECK

Today’s Reading: Proverbs 29-30

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion).

 

The Hyrax, also known as a rock badger, lives on rocks all around Israel. This one was photographed in the Ein Gedi reserve on the shore of the Dead Sea. It is described in today’s reading as “little on the earth,” but “exceedingly wise” (Proverbs 30:24, 26).

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.

 

Key Verses: Proverbs 29:1

He who is often rebuked and hardens his neck,

Will suddenly be destroyed, and that without remedy.

Two kings of Israel, Saul and David, were both rebuked…Saul by Samuel and David by Nathan. Saul was as one who “hardens his neck,” becoming stubborn and unwilling to change. David’s reaction was not to try to justify himself as Saul did, but to repent and change his ways. Saul’s attitude resulted in the loss of his position and eventually his very life. David’s response, “I have sinned against the Lord,” resulted in forgiveness and restoration. We may want to read the words David wrote to describe his repentance. They are found in Psalm 51.

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, when I’m made aware of sin in my life or am corrected in some way by one of Your servants, may I not make excuses and stubbornly continue going my own way, but may I receive the grace of repentance, turn around, and go Your way. I pray that I will keep a gentle spirit and always be ready to receive a rebuke from You or from someone You send to confront me. I ask for Your restoration in the Name of Jesus, Amen!!!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

My first encounter with a rock badger was in company with my two sons, Reynold, my photographer for the blog, and Ron, who formats and posts the blog. We were back-packing in Israel in 1978, and as we climbed over the rocks descending Mt. Carmel, there was a little creature looking at us for a moment. He (or she), according to Scripture, is “exceedingly wise,” and darted under a large rock for protection from these three large creatures who were approaching. Proverbs says that they are “a feeble folk.” They are called “people” in the original King James Version. It occurs to me that when anything appears too big for me to handle, I need to scurry under the Rock of God’s safety. Psalm 61:2b reminds me that “When my heart is overwhelmed,” I need to pray, “Lead me to the Rock that is higher than I.”

Yours for “exceedingly wise” counsel from God’s Word,

David

P.S. The old hymn says, “Hiding in Thee. Hiding in Thee. O thou blest Rock of Ages I’m hiding in Thee” (click here for a recording of this great hymn).

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

A FRIEND AND A LION

Today’s Reading: Proverbs 27-28

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion).

 

After preaching the gospel in Philippi, Paul passed through Amphipolis and Apollonia with Silas during his second missionary journey, traveling on the Ignatia Way from Philippi to Thessalonica (Acts 17:1). Amphipolis was one of the most important cities of Macedonia in antiquity. The “Lion of Amphipolis” has been dated from the fourth century B.C. It stands on a restored pedestal on the very spot where its broken and scattered pieces were found. It was either a funerary monument or a monument erected to commemorate some as yet unidentified military victory. For readers of 100words, the Lion can remind us to be, as Proverbs 28:1b says, “Bold as a lion.” To my photographer son, Rev. David R. Mainse (seen in the photo above), I say, “Never flee from a challenge. As a righteous man you are as bold as a lion.”

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.

 

Key Verses: Proverbs 27:17, 28:1

As iron sharpens iron,

So a man sharpens the countenance of his friend.

…The wicked flee when no one pursues,

But the righteous are bold as a lion.

The word “friend” in our first key verse refers back to 27:10a which says, “Do not forsake your own friend or your father’s friend.” True friends never forsake one another, and true friends interact with each other in a way that “sharpens!” “Dull” is not very attractive in any life! When we love each other, we want the very best for our friends, and therefore we are not afraid to confront, to argue sometimes, and to seek change for the better, humbly recognizing that we too need to change, more often than not…probably more than our friends need to change.

In the second key verse, the word “BOLD” stands out BOLDLY! The Apostle Paul was a true friend of the young Pastor Timothy. Iron was sharpening iron in Paul’s words in 2 Timothy 4:2, “PREACH THE WORD! BE READY IN SEASON AND OUT OF SEASON. CONVINCE, EXHORT, WITH ALL LONGSUFFERING AND TEACHING!” In 2 Timothy 4:5 Paul cuts with the sharp iron sword of God’s Word when he writes, “YOU BE WATCHFUL IN ALL THINGS, ENDURE AFFLICTIONS, DO THE WORK OF AN EVANGELIST, FULFILL YOUR MINISTRY” (see 2 Timothy 4:1-5).

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, I thank You for my friends. I pray that I will consistently cherish friendship, never taking my friends for granted, and always having their best interests in my prayers and my actions. I thank You, Lord Jesus, that You are my very best true Friend forever. I ask for grace to be as Proverbs 28:1 says, “As bold as a lion,” in telling everyone about my Friend, Jesus, who is also the Son of God and my Saviour and Lord, in whose Name I pray, Amen!!!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

I’ve just watched again the interview I did many years ago with Dr. Roland Harrison, the lead Hebrew scholar in the “New King James” translation of the Bible (If you missed it, click here). With us on that same edition of 100 Huntley Street was Dr. Charles Ratz. In Massey Hall, Toronto, during my college graduation exercises, my Dean of Theology, Dr. Ratz, gave the charge to the graduates. He quoted the Apostle Paul saying, “I CHARGE YOU THEREFORE BEFORE GOD AND THE LORD JESUS CHRIST, WHO WILL JUDGE THE LIVING AND THE DEAD AT HIS APPEARING AND HIS KINGDOM: PREACH THE WORD!” That charge sharpened me and still does. That charge cut deeply into my innermost being and still does. It helped motivate me to be “BOLD AS A LION” throughout the almost 57 years since that time. This has been purely and completely God’s grace which has been given to me. I will be eternally grateful to my friends who, through the years, have been true and faithful in their friendship. I have been corrected, and as a result have become, I think, a new and improved version of David Mainse. Thank you! Thank you! Thank You! Most of all I say to Jesus, “Thank You!!!!!”

Yours for friendships throughout time and eternity,

David

 

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

THE ROLLING STONE

Today’s Reading: Proverbs 26

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion).

 

The Abu Badd is a rolling stone used as a fortified door of a Byzantine monastery from an old village in Jordan. It is now on display on Mount Nebo in Jordan, the mountain top from which Moses viewed the Promised land. My son David Reynold Mainse must have set his camera on the tripod, put it on a timer, and walked over into the shot. Thanks Reyn for great photos.

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.

Key Verse: Proverbs 26:20

Where there is no wood, the fire goes out;
And where there is no talebearer, strife ceases.

 

In the margins of the New King James Version, The Open Bible Expanded Edition, there are comments on our key verse and the two verses following it. It indicates that “talebearer” could have been translated “gossip.” Proverbs 26:22 reads, “The words of a talebearer [gossip] are like tasty trifles, and they go down into the inmost body.” Again the NKJV notes that gossip goes, and here is the literal translation, into “rooms of the belly.”

Proverbs 26:27b presents a dramatic word picture, “He who rolls a stone will have it roll back on him.” This is in the context of talebearing or gossip. It talks of “fervent lips with a wicked heart” (26:23a). Just imagine pushing the stone pictured above and having it roll back to crush the person trying to hold the weight of false words.

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, I pray that You will enable me to watch my words carefully lest they, like a stone, roll back on me. You’ve given me words here in Proverbs which produce life and not death. May my entire vocabulary be influenced by the “Wisdom” I am reading daily. I pray this in the Name of “Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” (Colossians 2:3). Amen!!!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

Today’s blog has me thinking of the rock group, The Rolling Stones. Through the years those Stones have rolled over millions of people, the lyrics of their songs leaving a lasting impression on young people particularly. Consider these lyrics: “I can’t get no satisfaction…’cause I try and I try and I try and I try. I Can’t get no…I can’t get no…satisfaction.” My answer? TRY JESUS. He’s the only One who truly satisfies!

Speaking of “rolling stones,” Bruce Stacey has created a great animated children’s production “Rez, the Rock that Rolled” (click here for a preview). I plan to put this powerful animated message on my laptop and show it to children, God willing, whenever I get a chance. Here is a link to where you can find it online.

Yours for the Rock that doesn’t roll, “The Rock of Ages,” a solid foundation for our lives,

David

Monday, December 4, 2017

APPLES OF GOLD

Today’s Reading: Proverbs 25

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion).

 

This is a gold aureus of the Roman Emperor Tacitus (275/276 AD) minted in Rome. It was on display at the Davidson Center at the Jerusalem Archaeological Park. As in our reading today may 100words.ca be valuable like gold. Each day we mine for the infinite value to be found in God’s Word. Like gold, words are our medium of the exchange of our thoughts.

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.

 

Key Verses: Proverbs 25:21-22

If your enemy is hungry, give him bread to eat;

And if he is thirsty, give him water to drink;

For so you will heap coals of fire on his head,

And the Lord will reward you.

 

Jesus said, “When the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the holy angels with Him, then He will sit on the throne of His glory… [then this mighty King of the universe will say,] ‘I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink.'” However, God’s love is so great that He entered humanity as a little Baby, grew into manhood, gave us teaching, and we crucified Him. When He returns, the first thing He will do is judge us as to how we’ve cared for the hungry and thirsty. Amazing!!! The least we can all do is help others in deep need.

Proverbs 25:11 says, “A word fitly spoken is like APPLES OF GOLD…” Crossroads produced a movie by that title back in 1979. Part of the film detailed the atrocities committed by terrorists in Israel and beyond. Copies sold around the world and all proceeds went to help terrorist victims by procuring prosthesis for both Jews and Arabs in Israel and the Palestinian territories. It played first in the Jerusalem theatre and then for ten years weekly in major Jerusalem Hotels. The Crossroads Family of Ministries works hard as our partners (you) enable us to communicate in a wise way with words “fitly spoken” accompanied by powerful visual messages.

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, I pray for You to put a watch over my mouth so that I will say only what You want me to say. By Your grace may I communicate carefully like those “apples of gold,” crafted with tender loving care. Help me also to do my part in caring for needy people. In Jesus’ Name I pray, Amen!!!

100 PERSONAL WORDS

Some time ago the 100 Huntley Street daily telecast featured a New King James Study Bible with Dr. David Jeremiah’s notes and commentaries. Thomas Nelson Publishers has published a special edition of the Scriptures with excellent study materials and lots of excellent features. Here is a recent interview with Dr. Jeremiah about this new study Bible. Also, here is where you can purchase this new Bible for a Christmas gift! Good suggestion!!!

Yours for feeding the hungry, speaking words fitly, and for a new beginning in Bible study for the New year,

David

 

Sunday, December 3, 2017

FRET NOT

Today’s Reading: Proverbs 24

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion).

 

“The White Tower” is a monument and museum on the waterfront of the city of Thessalonica, capital of the region of Macedonia in northern Greece and a symbol of Greek sovereignty over Macedonia. Our key verse speaks of building wisely. Jesus said, “Which of you, intending to build a tower, does not sit down first and count the cost (Luke 14:28a)?” At the very least, the cost of building our households wisely is the daily practice of reading the Word of God and spending time in prayer.

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.

 

Key Verses: Proverbs 24:3-4

Through wisdom a house is built,
And by understanding it is established;
By knowledge the rooms are filled
With all precious and pleasant riches.

 

The repetition of the word “lips” stands out in today’s reading. We may have heard the saying, “Loose lips sink ships.” The message is clear. Our words can make trouble (24:2), can deceive (24:28), or can provide a right answer (24:26). The word “evil” is also repeated several times. Firstly, there is a warning against making people who do evil our heroes (24:1). Our children need to be on guard against making people whose lives are a mess, such as some movie stars or some rock stars, their heroes. There are some great and godly people who work in making movies, music, or other areas of life, that we can present to the next generations. Secondly, “Do not fret because of evildoers” (24:19a)! Why not worry about it? Because, “The lamp of the wicked will be put out” (24:20b). When we pray fervently for others, we gain a long-term view of life and, as our key verses tell us, we build our household wisely and fill all the rooms with good things!

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, I pray for wisdom along with the determination to fill my house with understanding and knowledge, so that I will surround my life and the lives of my family and friends who visit me with precious and pleasant riches…riches of love, joy, peace, truth and all the characteristics of Jesus, in Whose Name I ask these blessings, Amen!!!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

As I came to the end of Proverbs 24, I read, “A little sleep, a little slumber…” I enjoy and thrive on the life discipline of early mornings to which God has called me, and the older I get, I like change less and less (24:21b). Nevertheless, I am determined that I will “fret not! It was 1993 when Dr. R.K. Harrison went to Heaven. Here is an interview I did with this outstanding man of God and true scholar who was the primary New Testament translator for the NKJV (click here).

Yours for building our households with wisdom and filling the rooms with precious and pleasant knowledge,

David

P.S. I sometimes get a little lonely for our old studio building at 100 Huntley Street, Toronto, where the interview with Professor Harrison took place. Truly this was a building where the rooms were “filled with all precious and pleasant riches.” We moved from there in 1992. Below is a picture of the front of that special building.

Saturday, December 2, 2017

TRANSMITTING TRUTH

Today’s Reading: Proverbs 23

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion).

 

This is the facade of St. Catherine’s Church, with statues of Jerome and the Virgin Mary out front. Midnight Mass, carried around the world on TV Christmas Eve, originates from this church. Jerome translated the Holy Scriptures from Hebrew and Greek into Latin, the language of the Roman Empire, in a large cave located under this church. It is located next to the cave which we are told served as the stable where Jesus was born. Jerome’s cave stretches under the Church of the Nativity and is adjacent to the stable cave. This church is connected, wall to wall, to the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem. Like Elijah’s statue on Mt. Carmel, Jerome’s statue is depicted as trampling on death. The last enemy, death, is defeated!

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.

 

Key Verse: Proverbs 23:23

Buy the truth, and do not sell it, also wisdom and instruction and understanding.

 

Jerome (347-420 AD), who is depicted in the statue above, invested most of his life in producing the first complete translation into Latin from the original languages of Hebrew and Greek. His work became the official translation of the Bible for the lands of the Roman Empire. In a very real sense, Jerome bought the truth with an investment of 20 years of his life. He gave “truth,” “wisdom,” “instruction,” and “understanding” to the whole world. Other translations were made into other languages from Jerome’s amazing work.

Today’s reading may contain the longest section on any one topic in all of the book of Proverbs. Verses 20 and 21 refer to “winebibbers” and “the drunkard.” Then verses 29 to 35 are all about those “who linger long at the wine.” It’s a most serious warning which wise people will take to heart.

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, I pray for (1) truth, which is manifested in the gifts of (2) wisdom, (3) instruction and (4) understanding, to be constantly active in my life. I ask for Your protection against the temptation of too much alcohol with its mind-muddling effects and any other substances or activities that work against these four gifts. I pray this in the Name of the One who always demonstrated these qualities, Jesus Christ, Amen!!!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

Recently I stood in front of Jerome’s statue in Bethlehem as I was videotaping a Christmas show (click here and scroll to 29:00 near the end of the program). As I thought about Jerome, I thought about the great price paid by him and many others to give us our precious Bibles. My earliest memories of the Bible were of my mother opening her Bible each day at breakfast and at dinner while my Dad was overseas (1938-1944) reading lovingly and carefully. I had no doubt that this was the most important thing we did as a family. When my Dad arrived home in time for Christmas, he took upon himself the task of leading our family devotions. These influences are probably the main reason why I’m doing this daily blog!

Yours for publishing, reading, and learning the “Word of God,”

David

Friday, December 1, 2017

WORDS OF TRUTH

Today’s Reading: Proverbs 22

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion).

 

A mother and her children enjoy some moments together at Nazareth Village. The people who demonstrate life as it was 2,000 years ago are dedicated believers in Jesus. Most of them are members of the Nazareth Baptist Church. Rev. Nizar Shaheen, my son-in-law, was ordained as a Minister of Christ in this church. The church operates a school, kindergarten through high school, that has about 1,000 students. Let us pray for this church, and others in Nazareth, as they face some difficult times.

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.

 

Key Verses: Proverbs 22:20-21

Have I not written to you excellent things
Of counsels and knowledge,
That I may make you know the certainty of the words of truth,
That you may answer words of truth
To those who send to you?

 

The translation used in this blog is the New King James Version. I hope to do as our key verse says. There is counsel and knowledge here in this daily  blog. There is “certainty of the words of truth.” Amen!!!

Let us consider another proverb found in Proverbs 22:2. “The rich and poor have this in common, the Lord is Maker of them all.” Rich and poor have more in common than this. He is the only Saviour. He is the Judge of the universe and everything in it. He is Lord to all who give Him our lives. No matter how much money anyone has, salvation cannot be purchased by money. No matter how poor anyone is, they cannot be refused salvation, providing they ask in repentance and faith, because eternal life was paid for in full by Jesus Christ on the Cross! Salvation is free to all who come to Jesus and ask to be saved. If we have further questions about our eternal salvation, call our Crossroads prayer line at 1-866-273-4444. A loving caring person will answer. About 1,000 people every day call that number!

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, I’m going back to the key verse again and forming it into a prayer so that I may help others more and more. I also pray again that prayer which rich or poor must pray in order to have assurance of salvation and eternal life. “Lord, be merciful to me a sinner.” I have confidence that You save me because Jesus said so (Luke 18:9-14). Yes! Amen!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

I’m using consistently the New King James translation of the Bible. Today I want to tell a story of the giving heart of the largest publisher of Bibles in the world, Sam Moore, the man who, along with God, is the main reason we have the “New King James Version.”

In 1983 my daughter married a young man from Cana of Galilee, the village famous for Jesus’ first miracle, turning the water into wine at a wedding feast. Sam Moore printed 2,000 Bibles in Arabic and embossed the names of Ellen and Nizar on the cover as gifts for all who attended. Nizar, as the heavy-weight boxing champion for the Galilee area, attracted at least 2,000 men, mostly Muslims, to his wedding. The Word of God was put into their hands. Now many of these same men listen to the Gospel daily as Nizar shares the Word of God on television. Sam will be embarrassed to read this here, but I want to honour this man who paid for a wonderful honeymoon for these newlyweds. These are just two more reasons why I quote the NKJV.

Yours for the “Words of Truth” to be made known!!!

David