Daily Archives: March 15, 2018

March 15: The Power Struggle

Numbers 16:1–50; John 21:1–25; Psalm 17:1–15

Every leader faces power struggles—from those who follow the leader and from those the leader follows. If there isn’t some sort of struggle, the leader probably isn’t doing his or her job well. It’s simple: those who make everyone happy probably aren’t pushing people to be better, and pushing will—at times—frustrate both the leaders and the followers.

Moses regularly experienced leadership struggles. In Numbers 16, Korah—accompanied by 250 men who were leaders in Israel—calls Moses and Aaron’s leadership into question, saying, “You take too much upon yourselves! All of the community is holy, every one of them, and Yahweh is in their midst, so why do you raise yourselves over the assembly of Yahweh?” (Num 16:3). They’re using Moses’ words, spoken on behalf of Yahweh, against him here: “you will belong to me as a kingdom of priests and a holy nation” (Exod 19:6). But they made one faulty assumption in doing so. Yahweh had prefaced these words by saying, “if you will carefully listen to my voice and keep my covenant, you will be a treasured possession for me out of all the peoples, for all the earth is mine, but …” and then He continued with the line Korah quoted (Exod 19:5–6).

Surely Moses knows this, and he is well aware of their folly. But rather than answering the fool according to his folly, he responds by prostrating himself—an act of worship toward God and humility toward those he serves: the people of Israel. He then says, “Tomorrow morning Yahweh will make known who is his and who is holy, and he will bring him near to him, whomever he chooses he will bring near to him” (Num 16:5). It appears that in that moment of prostration, Moses prayed and was immediately given an answer. He insists on bringing the matter before God Himself.

Moses could have defended himself by insisting upon the special nature by which God had revealed Himself to him. Or he could have noted to Korah that he is only out of Egypt—and thus able to call Moses into question—because Moses was obedient to God. He even could have noted that Korah was only in leadership at all because Moses listened to God and appointed him. But instead, he insisted on bringing it before God. He did, though, follow up by telling Korah that he had plenty of authority and shouldn’t be so greedy (Num 16:8–11).

This event demonstrates the kind of faith that we should all have in what God asks us to do.

How do you respond when people question what God has asked you to do? How can your response in the future be more like Moses’?

John D. Barry[1]


[1] Barry, J. D., & Kruyswijk, R. (2012). Connect the Testaments: A One-Year Daily Devotional with Bible Reading Plan. Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press.

March 15 Putting God First

“Hallowed be Thy name” (Matt. 6:9).

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Prayer should always exalt God.

The Disciples’ Prayer illustrates the priority that God should hold in our prayers. Jesus began by exalting the Father—“Hallowed be Thy name” (v. 9), then requested that the Father’s Kingdom come and His will be done (v. 10). He concluded with an anthem of praise: “For Thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever. Amen” (v. 13). His prayer literally begins and ends with God.

“Hallowed be Thy name” exalts the name of the Lord and sets a tone of worship and submission that is sustained throughout the prayer. Where God’s name is hallowed, He will be loved and revered, His Kingdom eagerly anticipated, and His will obeyed.

“Thy name” speaks of more than a title such as “God,” “Lord,” or “Jehovah.” It speaks of God Himself and is the composite of all His attributes. The Hebrews considered God’s name so sacred they wouldn’t even speak it, but they missed the point. While meticulously guarding the letters of His name, they slandered His character and disobeyed His Word. Because of them the name of God was blasphemed among the Gentiles (Rom. 2:24).

Psalm 102:15 says, “So the nations will fear the name of the Lord, and all the kings of the earth Thy glory.” It’s not the letters of God’s name that the nations fear; it’s the embodiment of all He is. As Jesus prayed, “I manifested Thy name to the men whom Thou gavest Me” (John 17:6). He did that by revealing who God is. John 1:14 says, “The Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth.” Jesus told Philip, “He who has seen Me has seen the Father” (John 14:9). Jesus is the manifestation of all that God is.

Manifesting the priority of God in your prayers involves acknowledging who He is and approaching Him with a reverent, humble spirit that is yielded to His will. As you do that, He will hallow His name through you.

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Suggestions for Prayer:  Praise God for His holiness. ✧ Ask Him to use you today to demonstrate His holiness to others.

For Further Study: Read Numbers 20. How did Moses show irreverence for God’s name?[1]


[1] MacArthur, J. F., Jr. (1993). Drawing Near—Daily Readings for a Deeper Faith (p. 87). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books.

BuzzFeed Acquires The Gospel Coalition

NEW YORK, NY—In what was rumored to be a multi-million-dollar deal, popular clickbait website BuzzFeed has purchased The Gospel Coalition, journalists learned Wednesday. TGC had reportedly been restructuring and refocusing its content for the past several years in an attempt to merge with a larger clickbait site, and according to TGC council members, BuzzFeed was […]

The post BuzzFeed Acquires The Gospel Coalition appeared first on The Babylon Bee.

The entertainment-driven church

Charles Spurgeon once said of church: If you have to give a carnival to get people to come to church, then you will have to keep giving carnivals to keep them coming back.

So, why would church leaders want people to come to a Sunday worship service to be entertained? In the 1800’s, Spurgeon saw the entertainment-driven church looming on the horizon when he was preaching and he spoke out against it. Today the goats who fill the chairs expect their church experience to be entertaining. And if it isn’t? They’re out of there!

Professing Christians leave churches for a myriad of reasons. For example, they leave because they feel that the sermon is too long, too preachy, boring, politically incorrect, or they don’t care for the music…people are unfriendly…people judge you…no youth groups or the ones they offer don’t meet their standards…parking issues…the church stops offering snacks or the snacks become smaller — for some it’s about bigger snacks, as you will see in Elizabeth Prata’s piece over at The End Time. Prata tackles the conundrum over whether or not pastors should try to entice people to church by offering them “prizes & trinkets, promises of fun, snacks, entertainment and the like.” She writes:

The End Time

I love a serious church.

When I attend a worship service on Sunday that has all gravitas, seriousness, and intent to learn about, praise, and glorify the Lord, I am lifted up to great heights.

Our church is a Reformed-doctrine church that adheres to the ecclesiology of a plurality of elders. Our main teaching pastor exposits the scriptures verse by verse, book by book. He is good at it. We also have a confession time, where one of the elders gives us some scriptures to think about as he explains them, and then there’s a time of silence to repent or plead with God in any way we need to in order to prepare for receiving the preached word. Our music is doctrinal and Christ-exalting too. We do not pass the offering plate, but instead we have spots around the sanctuary during the service to place our money. Also we…

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Beth Moore Says Fighting Donald Trump is A Fight for the Faith

(Pulpit & Pen) Beth Moore, who is a wildly popular female Bible teacher heavily promoted in evangelical circles and aligned with the Southern Baptist Convention’s Lifeway Christian Resources, has steadily been opposing President Donald Trump since his presidential primary. She is not on record ever having opposed President Barack Obama.

Moore, who claims to hear audibly from God – going so far as writing down what she says God specifically told her – said in a tweet this week that getting political was necessary because of the “mountain of manure hitting the fan” and that for her and others it is a “fight for the faith.” …

As President Barack Obama was actively seeking to increase abortions nationwide, lighting up the White House in rainbow-colored flood lights and challenging the Right of Conscience for traditional family advocates, it was apparently not a giant pile of manure hitting the fan. But Trump’s policies, somehow, now must be opposed in the name of fighting for the faith.

The context of Moore’s March 12 tweet is Donald Trump. Moore has received heated criticism from the Soccer Mom contingent of Republican voters, who happen to be the very same demographic that is prone to follow Christian mommy-bloggers and read Beth Moore. A plethora of articles online have detailed Moore’s constant hen-pecking of Trump in social media, for which she receives accolades from some and condemnation from others. Riding a wave of virtue-signaling, wind-shifting popular public opinion, Moore has determined to err on the side of feminism and political correctness.View article →

Source: Beth Moore Says Fighting Donald Trump is A Fight for the Faith