Daily Archives: August 18, 2019

August 18 Experiencing Peace

Scripture Reading: John 14:1–27

Key Verse: John 14:27

Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.

When God initially placed Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden, surrounded by fragrant flowers, beautiful trees, and delicious fruits, do you think they felt peaceful? Of course they did. They were in true communion with each other and with God. They had no knowledge of evil, heartache, pain, or death.

We all know what happened next. Temptation entered the garden, and mankind began its earthly bondage to sin and death. Despite God’s foreknowledge of what would occur in Eden, it was never His will for humans to experience pain. God’s perfect, peaceful world was tainted by the author of evil, Satan.

Though we live in a world plagued by violence, anger, and hostility, we can still experience the peace that God intended us to know. By sending His Son, Jesus, to die for our sins, the door of peace and forgiveness was opened once and for all to those who believe.

To obtain God’s peace, you must make three key decisions: accept Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and Savior, believe that the peace God offers is yours for the asking, and live in obedience to God’s will. Remember—it is impossible to live with peace in your heart and rebellion in your actions.

It is God’s will for you to be tranquil in your heart and serene in your spirit, despite the chaos around you. Seek His peace today.

I will know, Lord, when I am seeking Your will: I will have an untroubled heart because of Your peace within.[1]

[1] Stanley, C. F. (2006). Pathways to his presence (p. 241). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

August 18 Life at Its Best

Scripture Reading: 2 Samuel 7

Key Verse: 2 Samuel 7:18

King David went in and sat before the Lord; and he said: “Who am I, O Lord God? And what is my house, that You have brought me this far?”

David was stunned by Nathan’s announcement. God was crafting a divine covenant with the former shepherd that exceeded David’s fondest hopes. His household and the people of Israel would reap of God’s extraordinary beneficence.

The king and warrior was overcome with gratitude: “Who am I, O Lord God, and what is my house, that Thou hast brought me this far?” (2 Sam. 7:18 nasb).

In a different sense but of far grander import, God has formed a covenant with each believer in Christ. It is the new covenant of forgiveness of sin and the gift of God’s righteousness. The incredible blessings of life in Christ, eternal and abundant, are inextricably bound up in this profound new relationship with deity.

This new life in Christ—a new beginning, a new perspective, a new destiny, a new power—is the only context to define life at its best. It does not get any better than intimate fellowship with our Guide and Sustainer, Jesus Christ.

Our response, when we ponder the immense weight of “every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ” (Eph. 1:3 nasb), should mimic the awe and wonder of David. Who are we that God has chosen us to know and enjoy Him?

Don’t gauge your level of success or satisfaction by materialistic criteria. You live in a covenant relationship with the Savior and King.

Father, who am I that You have chosen me to know and enjoy fellowship with You? I am overwhelmed by the privilege of my covenant relationship with You.[1]

[1] Stanley, C. F. (1999). On holy ground (p. 241). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

August 18 God Is Your Banner

Scripture reading: Psalm 37:1–9

Key verse: Psalm 36:12

There the workers of iniquity have fallen;

They have been cast down and are not able to rise.

Kay Arthur asks,

Are there days in your life when you feel utterly defeated? Outnumbered, outflanked, and outgunned? Do you ever feel overwhelmed and overcome by yearnings of the flesh that run counter to God’s Word and His desire and plan for you?

Where do you turn, Beloved? Where do you find the strength and will to stand fast and keep fighting the good fight? Where do you look for help when the enemy comes in like a flood?

Turn to Jehovah-nissi. Find your deliverance in “the Lord my Banner.” Let your heart thrill at the victory that is ours in Him.

A banner in ancient times was an ensign or standard carried at the head of a military grouping. It became the rallying point in a time of war. Often it was a bare pole topped with a bright ornament that caught the light of the sun.

In times of battle, soldiers would look across the confusion and chaos of the battlefield for a glimpse of their king’s banner. As long as the shining ensign was held high, they would fight with courage and confidence.

God is your Banner. He sees the war raging against you and is your eternal Source of hope and confidence. In times of stress and pressure, take courage. Look for God’s standard moving out in front of you. The victory is yours as you trust Him.

You are my Banner, dear Lord. You are my Source of hope and confidence. Give me courage in times of stress and pressure, knowing that Your standard moves in front of me into battle.[1]

[1] Stanley, C. F. (2000). Into His presence (p. 241). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

August 18, 2019 Afternoon Verse Of The Day

cast your cares verse

22 Out of the confidence that God is enthroned (v. 19), the psalmist encourages the godly to reflect on his justice. In contrast to human treachery, Yahweh will “sustain” the righteous so that they will not be overcome (cf. 37:23–24). The oracle of salvation encourages the godly to “cast” their “cares” (lit., “what he has given you”; cf. 1 Pe 5:7) on the Lord. For a similar expression see 37:5–7. Calvin, 3:344, after struggling with this text, wrote the following:

It is not enough that we make application to God for the supply of our wants. Our desires and petitions must be offered up with a due reliance upon his providence, for how many are there who pray in a clamorous spirit, and who, by the inordinate anxiety and restlessness which they evince, seem resolved to dictate terms to the Almighty … and there can be no question that the only means of checking an excessive impatience is an absolute submission to the Divine will, as to the blessings which should be bestowed.[1]

22 The one praying now offers advice directly to the audience, but not about being betrayed by a friend. Again an abrupt shift in thinking takes the audience by surprise. The speaker is now back to assurance and the certainty that God will sustain and not let the righteous fall. One wonders if the assurance is really for the audience, or is it another way of convincing the soul that God’s promises are sure? It is the heart of what the person crying out to God is depending on—it is a wish expressed as an affirmation.[2]

22 Cast thy burden upon the Lord, and he shall sustain thee: he shall never suffer the righteous to be moved.

  1. Thy burden,” or what thy God lays upon thee, lay thou it “upon the Lord.” His wisdom casts it on thee, it is thy wisdom to cast it on him. He cast thy lot for thee, cast thy lot on him. He gives thee thy portion of suffering, accept it with cheerful resignation, and then take it back to him by thine assured confidence. “He shall sustain thee.” Thy bread shall be given thee, thy waters shall be sure. Abundant nourishment shall fit thee to bear all thy labours and trials. As thy days so shall thy strength be. “He shall never suffer the righteous to be moved.” He may move like the boughs of a tree in the tempest, but he shall never be moved like a tree torn up by the roots. He stands firm who stands in God. Many would destroy the saints, but God has not suffered it, and never will. Like pillars, the godly stand immovable, to the glory of the Great Architect.[3]

55:22 The golden peak of Psalm 55 is reached in verse 22:

Cast your burden on the Lord,

And He shall sustain you;

He shall never permit

the righteous to be moved.

The psalmist came to realize that the best course in time of troubles is not to run away from them, but to cast the burden of them on the Lord. May we learn the lovely lesson set forth by Bishop Horne: “He who once bore the burden of our sins and sorrows requests that we should now and ever permit Him to bear the burden of our cares.”[4]

55:22 Cast your burden upon the Lord. The word for “burden” implies one’s circumstances, one’s lot. The psalmist promises that the Lord will uphold the believer in the struggles of life.[5]

55:22 Cast your burden. The Septuagint renders this “cast your anxieties,” and 1 Pet. 5:7 urges Christians to a similar faith in the face of persecution. moved. [6]

55:22 he will never permit the righteous to be moved. The context of the psalm shows that there is no unqualified promise that the righteous will always be happy and prosperous. The psalmist sings this lament to the Lord because he is in despair. The verse must mean that God will not leave the righteous in the fallen position forever, but will vindicate them in the end.[7]

[1] VanGemeren, W. A. (2008). Psalms. In T. Longman III & D. E. Garland (Eds.), The Expositor’s Bible Commentary: Psalms (Revised Edition) (Vol. 5, p. 456). Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan.

[2] deClaissé-Walford, N., & Tanner, B. (2014). Book Two of the Psalter: Psalms 42–72. In E. J. Young, R. K. Harrison, & R. L. Hubbard Jr. (Eds.), The Book of Psalms (p. 478). Grand Rapids, MI; Cambridge, U.K.: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company.

[3] Spurgeon, C. H. (n.d.). The treasury of David: Psalms 27-57 (Vol. 2, p. 451). London; Edinburgh; New York: Marshall Brothers.

[4] MacDonald, W. (1995). Believer’s Bible Commentary: Old and New Testaments. (A. Farstad, Ed.) (pp. 634–635). Nashville: Thomas Nelson.

[5] MacArthur, J. F., Jr. (2006). The MacArthur study Bible: New American Standard Bible. (Ps 55:22). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

[6] Crossway Bibles. (2008). The ESV Study Bible (p. 1005). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles.

[7] Sproul, R. C. (Ed.). (2005). The Reformation Study Bible: English Standard Version (p. 784). Orlando, FL; Lake Mary, FL: Ligonier Ministries.

Lord’s Day 33, 2019 — The Thirsty Theologian

I was glad when they said to me, “Let us go to the house of the Lord.”

As the deer pants for the water brooks,
So my soul pants for You, O God.
My soul thirsts for God, for the living God;
When shall I come and appear before God?
My tears have been my food day and night,
While they say to me all day long, “Where is your God?”
These things I remember and I pour out my soul within me.
For I used to go along with the throng and lead them
in procession to the house of God,
With the voice of joy and thanksgiving, a multitude
keeping festival.

Why are you in despair, O my soul?
And why have you become disturbed within me?
Hope in God, for I shall again praise Him
For the help of His presence.
O my God, my soul is in despair within me;
Therefore I remember You from the land of the Jordan
And the peaks of Hermon, from Mount Mizar.
Deep calls to deep at the sound of Your waterfalls;
All Your breakers and Your waves have rolled over me.
The Lord will command His lovingkindness in the daytime;
And His song will be with me in the night,
A prayer to the God of my life.

I will say to God my rock, “Why have You forgotten me?
Why do I go mourning because of the oppression of the enemy?”
As a shattering of my bones, my adversaries revile me,
While they say to me all day long, “Where is your God?”
Why are you in despair, O my soul?
And why have you become disturbed within me?
Hope in God, for I shall yet praise Him,
The help of my countenance and my God.

—Psalm 42

Hymn XL.
Why art thou cast down?

Be still my heart! these anxious cares
To thee are burdens, thorns, and snares,
They cast dishonor on thy Lord,
And contradict his gracious word!

Brought safely by his hand thus far,
Why wilt thou now give place to fear?
How canst thou want if he provide,
Or lose thy way with such a guide?

When first before his mercy-seat,
Thou didst to him thy all commit;
He gave thee warrant, from that hour,
To trust his wisdom, love, and pow’r.

Did ever trouble yet befall,
And he refuse to hear thy call?
And has he not his promise past,
That thou shalt overcome at last?

Like David, thou may’st comfort draw,
Sav’d from the bear’s and lion’s paw;
Goliath’s rage I may defy,
For God, my Saviour, still is nigh.

He who has help’d me hitherto,
Will help me all my journey thro’;
And give me daily cause to raise
New Ebenezers to his praise.

Tho’ rough and thorny be the road,
It leads thee home, apace, to God;
Then count thy present trials small,
For heav’n will make amends for all.

—John Newton, Olney Hymns. Book III: On the Rise, Progress, Changes, and Comforts of the Spiritual Life.

Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

Please don’t miss worshiping with your local congregation
if you can possibly help it.
But if you’re in need of a good sermon,
try these.

via Lord’s Day 33, 2019 — The Thirsty Theologian

William Lane Craig debates Daniel Came: Does God exist? — WINTERY KNIGHT

The video of the debate was posted by ReasonableFaith.org– Dr. Craig’s organization. This debate occurred in March 2017 at the University of Dublin, in Ireland.

The video: (91 minutes)

My non-snarky summary is below.

Read more: William Lane Craig debates Daniel Came: Does God exist? — WINTERY KNIGHT

Trusting In The Right Thing — The Outspoken TULIP

What makes someone a genuine Christian? Good works? Obedience to Scripture’s precepts? Praying “the sinner’s prayer” or making a “decision” to follow Jesus?

When people ask for evidence of our salvation, do we point to how much we pray and study the Bible? Do we tell them about our various ministries within our local churches or our involvement with parachurch organizations? Maybe we mention how we homeschool our children, or how we’ve forsaken sexual sin? Surely each of these things demonstrate our love for the Lord! Right?

Um, not really.

A lot of those behaviors are good, but only as responses to the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ. We aren’t Christians because of anything we do. We’re Christians because He shed His blood to satisfy the wrath of God that actually belongs to us. He redeemed those who trust in His finished work on the cross. His grace, and only His grace, makes us His   children.

via Trusting In The Right Thing — The Outspoken TULIP

August 18 In Step with the Spirit

scripture reading: 1 Corinthians 13
key verse: Galatians 5:25

If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.

Have you ever held someone’s hand as you walked along together? You surely noticed how important it is to maintain the same stride. You can’t walk too slowly and you can’t walk too fast, at least not without pulling your hand away.

That is what Galatians 5:25 is talking about when it says “walk in the Spirit.” The New International Version captures the original Greek flavor of the word walk here: “Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit.” The word picture is one of “walking in line with.” When you are not following your fleshly urges to walk at your own pace, you feel the direct guidance of the Holy Spirit step by step along the way.

When you walk in harmony with the Spirit, the fruit of this relationship is evident. It makes sense that the fruit of the Spirit is the subject of other verses of Galatians 5. Which of these do you see in your attitudes and behavior: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self–control? It is truly an awesome list. As you think through these attributes, it’s crucial to remember that they are not products of a decision to try harder. God keeps your feet on His good path when you keep in step with Him.

How often I have walked my own way, O Lord. Forgive me. I want to keep in step with Your Spirit. Set my feet on Your path and keep them there.[1]

[1] Stanley, C. F. (1998). Enter His gates: a daily devotional. Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.