Tuesday, February 24, 2015

WINNING THE PRIZE

Today’s Reading: 1 Corinthians 8-9

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

 

Ruins of a main street in Ancient Corinth.

Ruins of a main street in Ancient Corinth.

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

 

Key Verse: 1 Corinthians 9:22

…to the weak I became as weak, that I might win the weak. I have become all things to all men, that I might by all means save some.

 

Paul’s commitment, his personal discipline, his work schedule, and the way he lived his life is described in our key verse. The motivation, “that I might by all means save some,” is all consuming. Yes, he’s very human also. His statement about Cephas (Peter) bringing along his wife may have been evidence that for brief moments he felt sorry for himself (9:5). Nevertheless, Paul persevered with a godly stubbornness that refused to pander to his personal pleasures. The same could be said about his financial resources. He worked long hours making tents to support himself here in Corinth. He makes the point that he had every right to be supported by the offerings of the believers, but that for his own reasons, chose not to accept money from them for personal use. Just in case some would make a mandatory practice of this, remember that Jesus and the twelve accepted donations for their support (Luke 8:3). Joanna, the wife of Chuza, Herod’s steward, and many others provided for Jesus from their substance. Paul, himself, declared in 9:14 that those who preach the Gospel should live from the Gospel. However, Paul made a personal choice to support himself by his trade. I’m sure this added exclamation points (!!!) to his message and to the way these rough, tough people opened their hearts to Paul’s preaching.

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, may I be given grace to “become all things to all men, that I might by all means save some.” I pray in the Name of the One who did this completely, the Lord Jesus Christ, Amen!!!!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

When Jesus left Nazareth, He may have set up a carpenter shop in Capernaum. From time to time, in order to care for my family, I’ve worked extra jobs to provide necessary funds. For some reason one of my efforts comes to mind. I hope I don’t offend anyone, but I would drive to one of the many lakes in the area of Northern Ontario, catch bull frogs, and ship them overnight by train to a Montreal restaurant for their menu of frog’s legs the next day. There are several other initiatives I took in order to have the funds to stay in ministry, preaching the Gospel.

In this blog, I’m like a child colouring in the pictures of a colouring book. My sons, Reynold, a missionary in Uganda and a professional photographer, and Ron, Chief Ministry Officer of Crossroads, both ordained ministers, create the outlines. Reynold has spent 3 months in Israel, Jordan, Turkey, Greece, and Italy to provide the pictures. The blessing of the entire leadership team of Crossroads is also important. Thank you everyone!!!

Yours to “by all means save some,” hopefully by being “winsome,”

David

P.S. My family is tied with chords of love to the Egyptian people. My heart aches for the families of the 21 brutally murdered for their faith. Here is a video showing Egyptian Christians worshipping and celebrating the Lord, knowing that there is ultimate victory over evil because of Jesus. I asked my son-in-law, Nizar Shaheen, for an English translation of the Arabic singing.  Some of the words to the chorus are, “Exalt Christ by your praise; call the heroes to walk with the cross; He defeated the darkness and the Light is shining!” (click HERE).

The Bible is opened to 1st Corinthians in front of the Temple of Apollo in ancient Corinth.

The Bible is opened to 1st Corinthians in front of the Temple of Apollo in ancient Corinth.

19 thoughts on “Tuesday, February 24, 2015

  1. Thanks for the great photos and links, today, Reynold and David. Amen!

    “When a man says he must develop a holy life alone with God, he is of no more use to his fellow men: he puts himself on a pedestal, away from the common run of men. Paul became a sacramental personality; wherever he went, Jesus Christ helped Himself to his life. Many of us are after our own ends, and Jesus Christ cannot help Himself to our lives. If we are abandoned to Jesus, we have no ends of our own to serve. Paul said he knew how to be a “door-mat” without resenting it, because the mainspring of his life was devotion to Jesus. We are apt to be devoted, not to Jesus Christ, but to the things which emancipate us spiritually. That was not Paul’s motive. “I could wish my self were accursed from Christ for my brethren” – wild, extravagant – is it? When a man is in love it is not an exaggeration to talk in that way, and Paul was in love with Jesus Christ.” My Utmost For His Highest, Oswald Chambers, February 24th.

    Thank You, Lord! Dear blessings, fellow saints!

  2. Thank you for the labour of love you and your family provide in this blog. Since I have never visited the biblical lands, I am finding the photos add a lot to the daily reading. I also appreciate your commentary and hearing of your personal experiences.

    • thank you David for the photos you post every day, like Eleanor , I appreciate them . Also for the video of our brothers and sisters in Christ worshipping our Saviour. Beautiful.

  3. David, recently a couple who have been members of my assembly for many years but not on a regular basis, have come back and were attending more frequently. They attended the Lord’s Supper, bible studies, etc… it was a joy to have them back. The wife died about a year and a half ago. The husband has reconnected with an old friend who has just come out of a bad marriage and the two have become quite close. She has moved into his home and has come to church with him quite often. He says that they are not sleeping together and most of us believe that is the case. I have questioned this arrangement in my mind and after reading todays verses I am concerned about what Paul is saying.
    No one else seems to think anything of this situation, so I am wondering if this is an ok situation and if I am reading too much into it. I love both of them and want them to continue in fellowship with us but at the same time I am concerned about being in the Lord’s will. I know in todays world this situation is accepted and a common practice but we are not of this world and I am concerned. Any comment you could make would be appreciated.

    Love in Christ,
    Sallybarb

    • This is always a thorny issue for Christians. On one hand you don’t want to condone sin but on the other hand you don’t want to come across as legalistic, self-righteous or sticking your nose in other people’s business.

      However, I think you have reason to be concern They might not be sleeping together at the moment, but by living together they are putting themselves in a situation that will make it difficult to avoid the temptation when it comes, even if they are just friends right now.

      Based on what you said I believe in this case your best course of action is to pray for them, to ask the Holy Spirit to convict their hearts if they are out of God’s will. Then trust God to know them and their situation better than you, and trust Him to change their hearts.

      If He gives you an opportunity to speak up about, then I would do so honestly, with all love, point out it is not a wise set up, it is not spiritually in their best interest because it could potentially lead both of them into temptation– plant the seed and trust the Holy Spirit to do the rest. I hope that helps.

    • thank you for this blog! many many many people are “living” together, some are having sex, others are purely for financial reasons, they do different things, travel, one is home when the other one is gone, helps with the security issue, I have taken the courage and mentioned the subject, some told me to mind my own business, others said they understood my concern, others were very up front and honest and explained it was strictly for financial reasons and the fact that there was someone around for a little more safety. I understand,, I am praying for a guy to come into the pool, a guy around 50ish, stating that he is looking for a place but is having a difficult time because he has a little sleep disorder and with those words, I would begin a conversation because I also have a sleep disorder! My first question would be for him to get a criminal search done and meet me in the pool next week and we’ll talk! I would bring my search and hopefully, if he is the guy that God wants in my place, that he would show up with his copy! My situation is for financial and safety reasons and to have someone to talk to once in awhile and also the guy would have to like swimming, sauna, hot tub, as I don’t use my shower/tub for septic tank reasons….so, it may sound odd but not to God, and I trust Him to provide! Also I pray that the Holy Spirit will give me guidance and wisdom to know if this is the right person. So, there are pros and cons to life. Everyone knows I am not wanting a “personal” relationship with a guy…..if anyone is moved, please pray for me.

  4. Thanks for the link David… Christ came to preach LOVE not WAR as so often we read in the Old Testament. The fight against terrorism is a spiritual war and the only way to win this war is through worship and praise in the Holy Spirit of our Heavenly Father… Amen!

  5. Thank you once again Pastor David et al for our blog. It truly is “a lamp unto out feet! and a light to our path”

    I loved the link to the Egyptian worship. I will share this with our friend who owns our local Tim Horton’s. He is a Christian and just return from his homeland. Blessings on these cold days in Ontario. Feel the warmth of Jesus through His Word.

  6. Loved seeing so many people worship our Lord. Someday we will understand all languages. Today is a day of protest in Queen’s Park re: inappropriate sex education of our young children. Please keep them in prayer. This education being pushed forward and is stated, ( “will happen” – by Ontario’s Premiere, Kathleen Winn) is so against Bible teaching.

  7. Loved the video. The smiling faces touched me, very encouraging to see so many worshiping our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Love to all Eleanor M.

  8. Yes, it’s a Beautiful video! My husband and I watched it several times. It’s so wonderful, their enthusiastic singing and smiling faces!! The language also sounds so Beautiful as they’re praising God!!! Thank you so very much for the link!

  9. I have a comment about catching Frogs
    when young I used to catch frogs to sell for bate i had noticed that a frog will swim out then circle around and come back to approximately where they left from and i could be ready for them on their way back

    Marvin

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