Tuesday, August 20, 2019

MY REDEEMER, THE LIGHT OF THE WORLD

Today’s Reading: Job 18-19

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

 

The Russian Orthodox Convent of the Ascension is located on the Mount of Olives. According to Orthodox tradition, this is the site where Jesus ascended to Heaven 40 days after His resurrection. A chapel behind the church is dedicated to John the Baptist, and according to tradition his head was found in a jar hidden in a cavity under the mosaic floor of an ancient Armenian church. Job said, “He shall stand at last upon the earth.” Jesus stood here at His ascension, and he will stand here again at His second coming.

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

 

Key Verses: Job 19:25-27

I know that my Redeemer lives, and He shall stand at last on the earth; and after my skin is destroyed, this I know, that in my flesh I shall see God, whom I shall see for myself, and my eyes shall behold, and not another. How my heart yearns within me!

 

This may be the first time to emphasize three key verses in this blog. They are so refreshing to read! Job has been enveloped in darkness, but suddenly light breaks through! From here on, Job slowly, slowly begins to hear from God.

We, too, can have truth illuminate our paths as we read His Word and seek the Light of the World, Jesus, in sincere prayer. Let us confess out loud, if possible, Job’s declaration in our key verses!!! This will engrave these words into our hearts and minds. Take time to meditate, concentrating on what God is speaking to us about His purposes for our lives.

Jesus said, “I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life” (John 8:12). John writes about that light in his first letter to the churches. Let’s read those words found in 1 John 1:4-7 and make a fresh determination to “walk in the light as He (Jesus) is in the light.”

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, I pray for grace to walk so close to the “Light of the world” that I will never “walk in darkness” again. In the Name of Jesus, the true Light for all people, I pray, Amen!!!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

In the early 1940’s, my Dad was stranded in Egypt and the Sudan because of World War II, and I had a job to do to help my mother and my two sisters. I had to cross a field, a ditch, and the base line road to reach the barn of Stuart White. Mr. White would fill my little pail with milk while he was milking the cows, carefully put the lid back on the pail, and send me off home. This was fine during the long evenings of summer, but in the dark evenings of winter at milking time, it was a different matter. I carried a lantern (no flashlight available) along with my pail. That light was my comfort. At 6, 7 and 8 years old, I was sure there was danger lurking in the shadows. While the pail was by my side, my lantern was as far out in front of me as I could hold it. Because of that light, I safely negotiated the ditch, the fence (my uncle built a stile, steps over the fence), and crossed the field to the safety of home. What a relief to be home. A cup of warm milk (no refrigerator) would be my reward for bravery. Throughout my life, I’ve desperately needed Jesus, God’s Light here on earth, to walk in security and safety.

Yours for consistently “walking in the Light,”

David

Monday, August 19, 2019

THE WITNESS/ADVOCATE

Today’s Reading: Job 16-17

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

 

The sun sets over Jerusalem and the Golden Gate, also known as the Eastern Gate. Jesus will one day return to the Temple Mount through this gate, which is temporarily stoned-up in an attempt to prevent this majestic entrance.

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

 

Key Verses: Job 16:19

Surely even now my witness is in heaven, and my evidence is on high.

 

There is a growing emphasis by Job’s friends and by Job himself that God is the Source of these calamities. Job does not know of the existence of Satan, the destroyer. In 16:9 Job says of God, “He tears me in His wrath…” Yet in the midst of all this, Job has a prophetic glimpse beyond his present anguish. He sees with eyes of faith and states that his “Witness is in Heaven.” The New American Standard version says, “My Advocate (evidence) is on high.” We long to say to Job, “Now you’ve got it! You’ve just seen into Heaven. You’ve seen your Lawyer for your defence. You’ve seen Your Intercessor!” Hebrews 7:25 had yet to be written, but it says, “Therefore, He (Jesus) is also able to save to the uttermost those who come to God through Him, since He ever lives to make intercession for them.” Job, Jesus is there as you suffer. You can trust Him completely to bring you through these hard times. We may want to remind Job that he has three Persons on his side who are much more faithful and wise than Eliphaz, Bildad & Zophar. They are the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit!

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, when I am called to minister to a hurting, grieving friend, may I allow God’s Comforter to minister through me. Holy Spirit, I pray that You will help me to join Jesus in His prayer meeting each day, participating in His prayer of intercession. Through Jesus Christ, my Saviour and Lord, Amen!!!

SOME PERSONAL WORDS:

I received the e-mail below in 2015 and shared it at the time. God has answered prayer. The churches of Assyut and El Minia, Egypt, are mentioned. My father and mother helped establish congregations in those areas. My sister, Willa Hodgins, was born in Minia in 1928. The Muslim Brotherhood government (2013) that was fomenting violence has been overthrown, and there is now some protection for the Christians. I asked our readers to pray for the Egyptian people. Thanks for responding with your prayers. My cousin, Rev. Roy C. Kenny, had forwarded this e-mail to me from Egyptian Henry Salah. It describes the situation in 2013.

I want to share this with you so you can pray for us. Today, the situation in Egypt has become very difficult. At 7 am, the police troops took over the square that the Muslim brotherhood supporters were camping at. As a result of that, all the Muslim fanatics all over the country got very angry and started attacking the police stations and the churches. Many churches were burnt down today in El Minia, Assyut, Suhag, Bani Suef, El Fayoum and Suez. Three of the churches are in my hometown and the villages surrounding us (especially Dalga, where our brother Fayez lives). They have also killed the father-in-law of brother Fadl, the church planter in Dalga. In Dirmawas, they have burnt and stolen 15 different shops owned by Christians. I can hear heavy gunfire in the streets right now, and it has been like that since the morning. I am imprisoned at my house and all the Christians in my hometown are the same way. We can’t go out into the streets because the Muslim fanatics are beating any Christian they see in the streets. I am not scared but I hope the situation will end soon, as it is getting worse every passing hour. They have burnt five different churches in El Minia city and a big Christian school until now. The riots are continuing. Our FM church in Assyut was attacked and they burnt its bus and bookstore as well as the Bible Society there. We need your prayers. Please, share this with everyone you know so we can all intercede for Egypt now.”

You prayed! I believe God has intervened to bring about a much greater measure of peace in Egypt. Please keep praying!

David

Sunday, August 18, 2019

A BIG QUESTION

Today’s Reading: Job 14-15

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

 

As you enter the Church of the Holy Sepulcher you can climb a set of stone stairs on the right. This stairway, according to the Orthodox tradition, leads to Calvary (Golgotha), regarded as the site of Jesus’ crucifixion. It is the most lavishly decorated part of the church. The main altar belongs to the Greek Orthodox, which contains The Rock of Calvary (12th Station of the Cross). The rock can be seen under glass on both sides of the altar, and beneath the altar there is a hole believed to be the place where the Cross was raised.

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

 

Key Verses: Job 14:14a

If a man dies, shall he live again?

 

The answer to that question is “YES!” Job was a man of great faith. Although he did not understand all that was happening to him and had a lot of questions for God about his troubles, his overall trust in God never wavered.

Job did not have the advantage of a completed Bible as we have. He did not know the Words of Jesus promising eternal life to all who believe in Him (John 3:16) or the assurance Jesus gave to Martha, as recorded in John 11:25-44. But Job did know that God is a just God. He knew that someday he would stand before God. Praise God that the truth of which Job had a partial revelation is now revealed in completeness by Jesus!

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, I have questions about the timing of the resurrection to come, which You promised. I have questions about my time here on earth. However, You have chosen to ask me to simply trust You for my future. I pray for grace and patience as my daily portion. In Jesus’ Name, Amen!!!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

In past blogs I’ve used pictures of what is known as “The Garden Tomb.” In our tours to Israel we have visited both the Garden Tomb and the great church building (pictured above), which is believed by many to cover the places of Jesus’ crucifixion, burial and resurrection. I am not dogmatic about the exact place where these events took place, but I am dogmatic that they did take place!!! Throughout the years, I’ve stood beside many graves, watched as the body was lowered into the ground, and quoted the Words of Jesus to Martha about the resurrection to come (John 11:25).

Yours for complete confidence in the “YES” answer to Job’s question,

David

Just inside the entrance of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre is The Stone of Anointing, also known as The Stone of Unction, which tradition claims to be the spot where Jesus’ body was prepared for burial by Joseph of Arimathea. However, this tradition is only attested since the Crusader Era, (eleventh century)and the present stone was added in the 1810 reconstruction.

Saturday, August 17, 2019

TRUST

Today’s Reading: Job 11-13

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

 

The gladiatorial games in the Roman Colosseum often included killing Christians. A person becomes like the “God” they serve. The one called “the god of this world” in Scripture is Satan. Those who serve his hateful purposes, regardless of the religion they profess, are worshipping Satan whether they know it or not.

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

 

Key Verses: Job 13:15a, 20-21

Though He slay me, yet will I trust Him…Only two things do not do to me, then I will not hide myself from You: Withdraw Your hand far from me, and let not the dread of You make me afraid.

 

Job had a clear conscience. Abraham, perhaps Job’s contemporary, “Believed in the Lord, and He (God) accounted it to him for righteousness” (Genesis 15:6). This fact is repeated twice in the New Testament (Romans 4:3 & Galatians 3:6). It is reasonable to assume that Job had approximately the same revelation of God as did Abraham. In the key verses for today, we see Job’s total confidence in God’s actions, and also Job’s prayer for God’s constant hand of providence upon him.

Believers in the God of the Bible have been tested severely throughout the ages. The photo above depicts a time when God did allow His people to be killed. It’s been shown that in our time more followers of Jesus have been murdered than all of history.  Muslims are killing Christians and each other in an unprecedented wave of Satan-inspired violence. In all this, God’s people have “TRUST” in God!

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, I pray fervently for strength for Your people in the Middle East and elsewhere who are being killed for Your Name’s sake. May they “be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might.” Lord Jesus, You have inspired me to read this prayer from Ephesians 6:10. Thank You for this encouragement. Also I’m thinking of the Apostle Paul who “fought with beasts at Ephesus” (1 Corinthians 15:30-32). Please continue to give to Your people, and to me also, the strength to endure, whatever may come our way. In Your Strong Name I ask these things, Amen!!!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

The persecution of God’s people and extreme violence is not new to the Middle East. On one occasion, my father, Roy Mainse, arose one morning to find painted on his garage door in Assiut, Egypt, “You are dogs, we will kill you.” He went about his regular missionary duties just the same. God protected him. On another occasion, when the British ruled Egypt, he was in a village where the garrison of British soldiers had been killed. Their bodies were thrown in a cart and pulled through the streets, the killers shouting, “British meat for sale – cheap!” The violence in Egypt, Syria, and in other places is from the same source, Satan himself. My Dad told me of one time when those he had led to Jesus were in the process of erecting a church building. The enemies of the Gospel threatened to destroy it, even as it was being built. The men of the church who were building it put a chair in the middle of the structure and asked Dad to sit in it for several days while they built. Knowing him, he would rather have been building too, but he complied with their request. He said that the would-be attackers were circling the building, but it seemed that a force kept them back. The building was completed. The Scripture says, “Resist the Devil, and he will flee from you” (James 4:7). Amen! While the Church of Egypt is a persecuted minority, it is still strong (click here for a report from Brian Stiller which aired on 100 Huntley Street).

Yours in full confidence that Jesus is building His church and all the powers of Hell shall not stop His Church! Amen!!! (Matthew 16:18),

David

P.S. Here is my favourite picture of seven of our eleven great-grandchildren taken in 2013. By the end of the book of Job, we will read that God blessed Job with many more descendants.

Great-grandchildren from left to right – Kaylin Stowell, Autumn Neilson, Noelle Neilson, Aliyah Stowell, James Stowell, Myles Neilson, Jadice Patterson.

Friday, August 16, 2019

THE MEDIATOR

Today’s Reading: Job 9-10

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

 

The Wedding Church in Cana of Galilee is where Jesus began His public ministry, turning water into wine. This was the home Church of my son-in-law, Nizar Shaheen. He served as an altar boy here. Ellen and Nizar were married in a basketball court right in front of the nearby Baptist Church on May 21, 1983. None of the churches would hold the crowd of about 2,500 people. In today’s reading Job mentions snow water. I prayed on live TV from here that God would warm hearts which were like cold water turning the water into the warmth of the wine of His presence.

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

 

Key Verses: Job 9:32-33

For He is not a man, as I am, that I may answer Him, and that we should go to court together. Nor is there any mediator between us, who may lay his hand on us both.

Oh, the great advantage we have compared to Job and his friends. Being fully God and fully human, Jesus became our Mediator. A mediator brings two parties together. The word “mediator” occurs seven times in the Bible…once in Job and six times in Galatians, Hebrews, and 1st Timothy 2:5, “There is one God and one mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus.”

A New Testament reading for today could be John 9:1-7. Bildad and Zophar believed that Job’s suffering was because of Job’s sin. Not so! Jesus said that the blindness of the man who was born blind was not the result of sin, but “that the works of God should be revealed in him.” This sounds very much like the reason for Job’s suffering.

When we are hurting, run quickly to the cross and, through Jesus death and resurrection, into the arms of our Father. The wine of His presence will warm and comfort you.

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Father God, thank You for Jesus, the only One that at the same moment touches both You, Father God, and me. Please grant me the understanding I need so that I will not allow time to pass without acknowledging Your healing and comforting presence. In Jesus’ Name, Amen!!!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

When my great granddaughter, Autumn Neilson, was about three years old, she rushed to me the moment I arrived at her front door. She pointed to her second toe on her right foot and told me that she had an owie. I bent over, kissed her toe, and prayed that her precious toe would be all better. Immediately she broke into a smile. Then she took me to the place where she stubbed her toe. Of course, I was most sympathetic. This special treatment I’ve been receiving from Autumn has been going on ever since. She’s been jumping up beside me at every opportunity and giving me cuddles. The reason may stem back to when our great-grandchild, Jadice Patterson, first visited from Oklahoma City at six months old. Jadice was the focus of everyone’s attention. I noticed Autumn’s long face, picked her up, and concentrated only on her for at least 15 minutes. It’s a beautiful thing to know that our Heavenly Father can give 100% attention to all His children at the same time. That comes with the fact that He is God and “God is love” (1 John 4:8b).

Yours for learning to run into the Father’s loving arms without delay,

David

P.S. My son in law, Bruce Stacey, has written and recorded songs for his children and grandchildren. Click the “play” arrow below for Bruce’s song about his granddaughter Autumn Lillian Neilson, called “When Autumn Smiles” (after you hit play, give it a minute to load).

Autumn Neilson

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thursday, August 15, 2019

QUESTIONS

Today’s Reading: Job 7-8

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

 

Pictured here is one of the Majestic entrances to Jerash Jordan. Recent excavations show that Jerash was already inhabited during the Bronze Age (3200 BC – 1200 BC). After the Roman conquest in 63 BC, Jerash and the land surrounding it was annexed by the Roman province of Syria and later joined the Decapolis cities (mentioned in Matthew 4:25 and Mark 5:20). In AD 90, Jerash was absorbed into the Roman province of Arabia, which included the city of Philadelphia (modern day Amman, the capital city of the Kingdom of Jordan).

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

 

Key Verses: Job 7:17, 8:21

What is man, that You should exalt him, that You should set Your heart on him?…He will yet fill your mouth with laughing, and your lips with rejoicing!

 

Job asks a great question. What is man? Jesus answered that question. Mankind is the object of God’s love (John 3:14-17). Jesus changed many things that Job and his friends believed. For example, Job said, “He who goes down to the grave does not come up” (Job 7:9b). But Jesus did come up! His grave is empty! (John 11:17-26).

Bildad correctly predicts God’s ultimate plan for Job: (1) Eventual prosperity. (2) The joy of God’s way. (3) Laughing. (4) A confession that brings rejoicing! (Romans 10:8-13). As I’ve written often here in the blog, “Jesus changes everything!”

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, I pray for the grace to look beyond my present circumstances to Your long-range plans for me. Thank You for the fact that I am loved by You and that You are mindful of me. May I not live, as has often been said, “under the circumstances,” but may I live “over and above.” In the Name of the One who has overcome even death itself, the Lord Jesus, Amen!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

I confess every day that I am an “overcomer.” In the last book of the New Testament, Revelation 12:11, we are told that, “They overcame him [Satan] by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony.” Job and Bildad did not have the written Scriptures in order to know absolute truth, but we are able to compare Scripture with Scripture. I’ve learned through the years that I must diligently study in order to, as the Apostle Paul taught a young pastor/teacher, Timothy, be “diligent to present yourself approved to God, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth” (2 Timothy 2:15).

I had a great example from my Dad. Mother died when I was 12 and Dad and I were left to carry on. He would have the porridge on the stove when he called me to get up for school, and when I arrived in the kitchen, he would have his Bible open on the table, ready to read to me, and then we would kneel and he would pray for me for the day ahead. Only then would he serve the porridge for our breakfast. A child never forgets such consistency. To this day, my number one priority is reading God’s Word and then praying for the day ahead. I’m overcome with emotion just now as I type this and think of the heritage I was given.

Yours for consistently reading God’s Word and for praying with our loved ones,

David

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

HAPPY…BIRTHDAY

Today’s Reading: Job 5-6

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

 

in present day Nazareth, first century life is acted out at Nazareth Village.

In present-day Nazareth, first century family life is re-created at a place called Nazareth Village.

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

 

Key Verse: Job 5:17

Behold, happy is the man whom God corrects; Therefore do not despise the chastening of the Almighty.

 

The above statement was made by Eliphaz to Job. Eliphaz had a good grasp on truth, but let us remember that the words of Job and his friends are their opinions. They are accurately recorded in the inspired Scriptures as being what Job’s friends said. Our key verse can be considered to be “Truth” because when we compare Scripture with Scripture, it stands the test. For example, we may want to read Hebrews 12:5-11.

In everyday life we know those (maybe ourselves) who are suffering because of the sins and failures of others, or because of circumstances beyond control. Job did not know why he was going through such testing, but in it all he retained his faith in God. Someone has said, “A believer is like tea; real strength only comes out when we are put into hot water.” The Apostle Peter wrote in 1 Peter 2:19-25 about the example of Jesus in enduring suffering. God’s plan is to make us like His Son and our Saviour, Jesus. Suffering temporarily is included in that plan. It is not meant to defeat or destroy us but to strengthen and refine us as gold, purified in the fire.

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, I pray for strength to endure any suffering that may come to me. I worship You, Lord God! In the Name of Jesus, the One who “learned obedience by the things which He suffered,” Amen!!! (Hebrews 5:7 & 8).

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

Today is Norma-Jean’s birthday. Happy Birthday my darling wife! Thank you for sticking with me throughout 59 years as of this September 19th. God has allowed testing in your life and you have come through as fine gold. I think that I’ve been a big test for you! Thank you for passing the test and continuing to love.

If you keep reading to the end of the book of Job, you’ll find a happy ending with a family larger than the original one!

Yours to celebrate,

David

Note from Ron Mainse: Watch today’s evening edition of 100 Huntley Street for a special celebration of Norma-Jean’s 80th birthday! If you miss it, you can find it tomorrow at 100huntley.com.

A family birthday celebration for David & Norma-Jean, August 14th, 2017 (their birthdays are on the 13th & 14th). David went home to be with Jesus just over a month later.

Tuesday, August 13, 2019

FRIENDS

Today’s Reading: Job 3-4

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

 

As you look north along the shore of the Judean cliffs and the Dead Sea,  you can see a storm rolling in.

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

 

Key Verses: Job 3:25

For the thing I greatly feared has come upon me, and what I dreaded has happened to me.

 

To say that Job wished he had never been born would be an understatement. God would not allow Satan to kill Job, but everything short of death was thrown at him. Job cried out, “Why did I not die at birth?” Jesus, in His 100% humanity, cried out, “Why?” (Matthew 27:45-49). Jesus and Job no doubt have met already. I think Jesus would probably say, “Job, I understand what you went through.”

Consider what true friends are, as described at the end of Job 2: (1) They heard of Job’s adversity. (2) They made appointments and travelled to visit him. (3) They mourned with Job. (4) They comforted him. (5) Job was so emaciated they did not recognize him and they lifted their voices and wept. (6) They tore their clothes in a show of grieving. (7) Job was sitting in a heap of ashes and his friends identified with him by sprinkling dust on their heads. (8) They sat on the ground with him for seven days and nights. (9) They did not speak for an entire week because Job’s grief was very great. (10) Then they heard Job speak first. He said, “May the day perish on which I was born.” Let us meditate on the words of the first friend as we read (again slowly perhaps) the words of Eliphaz in Chapter 4.

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, I’m so very thankful for at least three true friends with whom You have blessed me through the years. I pray that You will work in me sufficiently that I will be a true friend to several others. Your Word tells me that You, Lord, are a Friend “that sticks closer than a brother” (Proverbs 17:17 & Proverbs 18:24b). Lord Jesus, You are a true Friend! Thank You for being my Friend (Matthew 11:19). Amen!!!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

(Happy Birthday Dad!) My son, Ronald Wesley Mainse, who sets up the structure for me for the blog, typed that greeting! I assure you, my son, unlike Job, I’ve never wished that I’d never been born. I’m filled with joy at the fact that I was born on August 13, 1936, in the house pictured below in Campbell’s Bay, Quebec. There are six years between me and my closest sister in age, Elaine Boudinot, who lives now in Kentucky. My sister told me that mother had three miscarriages during those six years. I find that sad, and I hope to learn all about the “Why” question some day in eternity.

There are two others mentioned in Ezekiel 14 besides Job. They are Noah and Daniel. An extra study for today could be Ezekiel 14:12-23. All three were severely tested. Can I expect to sail through life without testing? I think not!

There have been times when I’ve visited friends in deep turmoil. Often there are no adequate words to speak. I trusted that my presence would say loudly, “I care deeply about you.”

Yours for deep and lasting friendships,

David

In front of the home where I was born in Campbell’s Bay, Quebec, August 13, 1936.

On my first birthday – August 13, 1937. At 81 years old today, I would definitely not be considered cute. Ron found these pictures on his brother’s computer and he wanted to put it into today’s blog.

P.S. Lorna Dueck and her team need our ongoing support as they approach the financial year end for Crossroads! Here is a message from Lorna once again…

This has been a remarkable year at 100 Huntley Street with a growing audience on TV and an exploding audience on the web through our website, social media platforms and on You Tube (where we now reach almost 1 million views every month).  It’s also looking like a turnaround year financiallybecause we’re SO CLOSE to finishing our fiscal year (August 31) with a balanced budget…the first time in six years!  Lots of hard work, cost-cutting, financial restraint and generous donors who believe in this ministry have made this goal achievable. We have exciting, new plans in mind for our new media mission year that begins in September.  I’m so committed that Crossroads be Canada’s “megaphone of the Gospel”…and we will not be silent about how Jesus can change lives… Jesus alone offers hope! Your donation today will make a difference in many lives.  – Lorna            

CLICK HERE TO MAKE A SPECIAL YEAR-END GIFT TO HELP US BALANCE THE BUDGET AND YOUR DONATION WILL BE MATCHED THROUGH A SPECIAL $10,000 CHALLENGE GRANT! YOU CAN ALSO CALL 1-800-265-3100 TO DONATE BY PHONE.

Monday, August 12, 2019

LEARNING FROM OUR TROUBLES

Today’s Reading: Job 1-2

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

 

There is a tomb in Nazareth Village that represents the tomb were Jesus was buried. Nazareth Village is a tourist attraction in modern Nazareth that re-enacts what life would have been like when Jesus lived there. Today we begin reading the book of Job. Job cries out for a redeemer and a mediator between himself and God. The empty tomb is proof that Jesus is Redeemer and Mediator, and that the last enemy, death, is conquered!

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

 

Key Verses: Job 1:21

And he said: “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, And naked shall I return there. The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; Blessed be the name of the Lord.”

 

The enemy of Job is Satan! Job is unaware of the work of Satan. Satan is the one who has “taken away,” but only with God’s permission. Even though Job believed that God was causing the disasters, he remained faithful to God.

Job is considered to be the oldest book in the Bible. The Sabeans and the Chaldeans were nomads who had not yet settled into cities as later history indicates. Job lived for 200 years, which makes him at the very least a contemporary of Abraham who lived for 175 years. Job uses the Name for God used by Abraham, “Shaddai,” 31 times. This means “The Almighty One.” There are no references to Israel, the Law or the Tabernacle. Therefore, we can conclude that Job did not have the first books of the Bible for his instruction. Because we have the Bible, we know far more than Job about the destructive spiritual powers waging war in this world. As an example of the knowledge we have available to us, read 1 Peter 5:6-9. Satan is still active in this world, but we know that the death and resurrection are proof that Jesus took Satan’s evil actions upon Himself. James 5:11b says, “You have heard of the perseverance of Job and seen the end intended by the Lord – that the Lord is very compassionate and merciful.”

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, I ask for grace to always apply to my everyday life the knowledge which I have as a result of reading the entire Bible. I pray that I will learn the very difficult lessons taught here in the book of Job. I ask these mercies in the Name of the Redeemer/Mediator for whom Job was seeking. Amen!!!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

My new baby son, David Reynold (our photographer), came home from the hospital with a staph infection, causing boils on his little head. Job had boils. I’ve had one boil only, and that was very painful. My heart was pained for Reynold as I had an idea about his suffering. At the time I was working from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m., Monday through Saturday, on a new church building in Deep River, Ontario. We lived in Pembroke, 26 miles away. When I would arrive home, Norma-Jean would hand Reynold to me to put to sleep. She had been holding him all day, as it was painful for him to lay his head on the pillow because of the boils. I would rock him for 2 or 3 hours until he fell into a sleep deep enough to bear the pain. I often wept for him as I would pray for his healing. When he was old enough, we purchased a Jolly Jumper, hooked it on the door frame, and he would fall asleep there, his little legs still kicking occasionally. God did heal him eventually, but the results of his months in the Jumper were yet to come. He went to University on a full football scholarship and was the fastest runner on the team. Of course, I’m not saying that this was the reason God allowed the boils. There may have been another reason. He is a man who feels the pain of others. For example, when he was 8 years old, we lived across the road from Queensdale school in Hamilton. He would dash out the door after lunch and I thought he was going to play in the school yard. When we moved from there, the neighbours came by to wish us well. A lady I had not met before said to me, “Thank you for Reynold. He would come by my home at noon each day and take my blind son for a walk along the street. He would describe the leaves, the squirrels, etc. and then return him to my door.” I wept! Perhaps the blessings of Job’s later years were as a result of the sufferings he had endured.

Yours for learning from our troubles,

David

Sunday, August 11, 2019

PEACE AND GRACE

Today’s Reading: 2 Thessalonians 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).

 

Thessalonica Greece is on the Aegeon Sea. On the left you can see the White Tower. This structure was at one time a prison, built in the middle of the 15th century. Now it is a six-floor museum.

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

 

Key Verses: 2 Thessalonians 2:16-17

Now may our Lord Jesus Christ Himself, and our God and Father, who has loved us and given us everlasting consolation and good hope by grace, comfort your hearts and establish you in every good word and work.

 

Our key verse follows several severe warnings to false teachers and those who follow them: “Flaming fire taking vengeance”…”Punished with everlasting destruction.” Then there is the condemnation of the anti-Christ who will come. He is called “the man of sin,” “the son of perdition,” and “the lawless one.” After hearing all this read in the congregation, the believers needed words of consolation, hope and comfort. We need this also! Today there are those who will try to deceive us. Representatives of cults and of the occult are at work everywhere. The entire New Testament was in the process of being written in Paul’s day.  Paul spent approximately three years in Corinth and it was from there that he wrote back to the Thessalonians. We have a great advantage in being able to read the completed Bible. Let’s continue to cherish our daily readings. Tomorrow we return to the Hebrew Scriptures in what many scholars consider to be the oldest book in the Bible, Job.

In Paul’s day, false teachers messed with the fact of the return of Christ and deceived some new believers with their errors. Let us pay close attention to Paul’s teaching so that we will not be led astray. False teaching has deceived some believers several times in recent decades.

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, I pray that You will keep me true to Your Word as taught to the Thessalonian church. May I receive grace so that I will not walk in a “disorderly” way. May I “not grow weary in doing good.” In Jesus’ Name I pray, Amen!!!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

Besides my motivation for personal spiritual growth, I’ve read the Bible daily for many years so that I will not be deceived. I’ve heard it said that to detect counterfeit money one does not study counterfeit money but should concentrate on the genuine. Therefore, when the counterfeit shows up, immediately one knows something is wrong. My unrelenting pursuit of consistent daily Bible study has protected me from false teaching at my front door, in books, etc. When I was just 18, a book was given to me which almost turned me aside from winning souls to Jesus. One night after I had spent time with a friend, I realized that I had talked about the content of this book and had not mentioned “THE BOOK.” I repented that night for allowing myself to be diverted by what I began to realize was false teaching. I do read teaching books now, but I make sure to check the credentials and the life of the author first, as well as the Biblical integrity of the teaching. It’s much easier now to search out the truth about a person or a religious cult because of the Internet. Of course, there are also lies from the father of lies, Satan, on the web, but checking up does give a sense of who a person or organization is. I also check up by asking my Pastor for his counsel.

Yours for “peace and grace,”

David