Daily Archives: September 24, 2019

September 24 A Grace-Filled Relationship

Scripture Reading: John 1:14–17

Key Verse: Luke 19:5

And when Jesus came to the place, He looked up and saw him, and said to him, “Zacchaeus, make haste and come down, for today I must stay at your house.”

We need only to look at Jesus to know our God is a God of grace. Jesus’ actions personify grace. We see Him dealing with all kinds of people, not to condemn them, but to lift them up, encourage them, and turn them toward God.

He told the adulterous woman He didn’t condemn her; she was just to go and sin no more (John 8:11). Although He knew about Zaccheus’s ill-gotten gains as a hated tax collector, Jesus was nevertheless willing to visit the man’s house (Luke 19:5). Jesus demonstrated grace even to the hypocritical, legalistic Pharisees: He pointed out their sins so they would repent.

Grace also means forgiveness for the times we sin. Does that mean we can live in any manner we choose and get away with it? No. While God forgives His children, He also disciplines them. Allowing us to get by with something God knows will ultimately destroy our lives wouldn’t be an act of grace. It would be an act of careless indifference, and that’s simply not who He is. He’s a God of grace.

The theme of the Christian life is grace—God’s abundant goodness, love, and mercy toward His children. The truth is, before we ever finish enjoying the goodness and kindness that He’s given us, He piles on more goodness and kindness, and then more again. John calls it “grace upon grace” (John 1:16 nasb).

Having been saved by grace and now walking in a grace-filled relationship with God, we are to respond in grace toward others. Ask the Holy Spirit to widen your vision of God’s grace, and seek ways to live it out.

Widen my vision, Holy Spirit. Assure me of Your grace at work in me and show me ways to live it out each day.[1]

 

[1] Stanley, C. F. (2006). Pathways to his presence (p. 279). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

September 24 You Are a Minister

Scripture Reading: Zechariah 4:5–7

Key Verse: Colossians 1:27

To them God willed to make known what are the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles: which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.

He had been a Christian for ten years and often prayed for God to allow him to work for a Christian organization. However, as the years went by, God provided no change in his line of work. Eventually he began to wonder, How can God use me in a place like this?

Too often we look at those who work for churches and ministries and think what they are doing is the most important work for the kingdom of God. It is important, but so is what you are doing right where you are. Only you can accomplish what God has given you to do. Working in a Christian organization is no more sacred than working in a factory or department store as long as your motive is to honor God.

You may work with someone who is trapped in sin. You don’t know it, but he feels helpless and longs for a way out. Because you know the Way, you also know the person who can break through his darkness with the light of eternal hope.

You are a minister of the gospel right where God has planted you. Praise Him for giving you this opportunity, and make every effort to take advantage of it. You are His only hope to a lost and dying world (Col. 1:27).

Almighty God, thank You for the opportunity to be a minister. Show me how to take advantage of it. Use me today—right where I am![1]

 

[1] Stanley, C. F. (1999). On holy ground (p. 279). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

God Is Glorified in His Gospel of Grace — Paul Tautges

The good news of salvation through Jesus Christ is first for the glory of God, and then for the good of man. The gospel shines light upon the mercy, love, and grace of God in ways that creation could never do. This is partly what the apostle Paul means when he writes in Ephesians 2:4-8

But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved—and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith.

Earlier in that same letter, the apostle makes it clear that the work of God in salvation displays the glory of His grace. Three times, he uses the phrase “to the praise of his glorious grace.”

The pure gospel glorifies God’s grace because it makes much of Jesus, and little of us. It reminds us that we are hopeless, helpless sinners who could never have saved ourselves. So God, rich in His mercy toward His enemies; deep in His love for sinners; and abounding in His grace toward those who are undeserving, has done it all.

In Jesus Christ, God did all that was necessary to atone for the sins of man. The just One died for the unjust, and the just became the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus. It is this glorious gospel of grace that Paul defends in his letter to the Galatians.

In Galatians 1:11-24, we see the apostle lift up the works of God which are accomplished because of, and through the power of God that is put on display by the gospel. There are four works of God that the Holy Spirit wants to impress upon your heart, mind, and soul.

  1. God communicated His gospel through Jesus Christ (vv. 11-12).
  2. God confronts religious sinners by means of His gospel (vv. 13-14).
  3. God calls and consecrates His servants through His gospel (vv. 15-20).
  4. God converts His enemies by the power of His gospel (vv. 21-24).

Properly understood, the gospel of God’s grace toward us in Jesus Christ reserves all glory for God. Let us beware of any distortions of the gospel which may subtly encourage us to add something to the work of Jesus Christ, or puff us up. All glory belongs to God.

You can watch or listen to the sermon here.

via God Is Glorified in His Gospel of Grace — Paul Tautges

September 24 Eternal Friendship

Scripture reading: Luke 10:1–9

Key verse: Proverbs 18:24

A man who has friends must himself be friendly,

But there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.

Jesus did not send His disciples out alone. He sent them two by two. This is a strong indication that God intends for us to need the help and companionship of others. Ecclesiastes 4:9–10 tells us,

Two are better than one

Because they have a good return for their labor.

For if they fall, one will lift up his companion.

Friendship softens us and makes us easier to live with. God uses the presence of friends to remind us of Himself. Often the avenue of blessing begins with a friend. But beyond our earth-bound friendships is the love of Christ, who is our dearest Friend. Through His Spirit, we receive the gift of His friendship.

The Holy Spirit instructs us in the ways of God, provides discernment, shouts a warning when we get off course, and provides a deep, residing sense of peace to all who have learned to rest in Christ. But the Spirit’s greatest goal is to lead us into an intimate relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ.

Nothing comes close to the friendship you can have with God through the Holy Spirit. In the Greek language, He is our Comforter—the One who has been instructed to come alongside us whenever we are hurting, lonely, or fearful.

Jesus told His disciples, “I will never leave you.” He meant it. The Holy Spirit is Christ living in you, your eternal source of friendship.

Lord, thank You for Your eternal friendship. I will never be alone. You are always with me.[1]

 

[1] Stanley, C. F. (2000). Into His presence (p. 279). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

Fake News Media Salivating As 145 House Democrats Order 4PM Meeting Today On Beginning Impeachment Hearings On President Trump, But What About Burisma Holdings? — Now The End Begins

The fresh calls for impeachment proceedings come as House Democrats are heading into a closed-door meeting Tuesday with Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

It’s got to be hard to be a Democrat in the Trump era, I’ll give you that. First, the Democrats were assured of a more than a ‘99% chance’ that Crooked Hillary would win in 2016, and that failed. Then to stop him, they created a story out of thin air that President Trump had won because of ‘Russian collusion’, and launched a 2.5 year, multimillion dollar witchhunt investigation to prove it, and that failed. Then they put Robert Mueller on the stand for a ‘slam-dunk’ event to prove their case for impeachment, and that too also failed spectacularly. Now they are sure they have President Trump right where they want him, and at 4 PM EST today, they are meeting like rats on the Titanic to discuss bringing impeachment proceedings.

“Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” Albert Einstein

Now, what is the real issue about President Trump and Ukraine, what are the Democrats really trying to do damage control on? Burisma Holdings, that’s what. Burisma Holdings is a natural gas producer operating in Ukraine, on whose board say Hunter Biden, son of former vice president and currently running for the Democratic nomination for president. According to the Times, Hunter Biden was paid “as much as $50,000 per month in some months” as a board member of Burisma Holdings, a natural gas firm owned by a member of the Ukrainian oligarchy. So what does Hunter Biden know about ‘the exploration, production, processing, transportation, and final sale of hydrocarbons’? Nothing. Nada. Zip. Zilch. Hunter was just there to get paid, and his dad Creepy Joe used the office of vice president to keep the money rolling in.

Starting to see the ‘real picture’ yet? 

The Democrats created the whole Russian collusion hoax to cover up for the fact that it was Crooked Hillary and then-president Obama who actually colluded with the Russians. The desperately needed to switch the spotlight away from their own party’s involvement, and to that point, they were successful. Now they seek to do the same thing, put President Trump on the hotseat to deflect from the real story about Joe Biden using his influence so his son could become a millionaire sitting on the board of Burisma Holdings. Let’s see if it works this time, but something tells me it will not.

A Ukraine gas company tied to Joe Biden’s son is at the center of the Trump-whistleblower scandal

A Ukrainian gas company called Burisma Holdings is at the center of a complicated scandal involving a whistleblower complaint that’s been linked to President Donald Trump, Ukraine, former Vice President Joe Biden, and his son Hunter Biden. Here’s what we know about the company and how it’s involved in the back-and-forth between Trump and the Bidens.

What we know about Hunter Biden’s role at Burisma:

  • In April 2014, Biden’s son Hunter joined the board of Burisma Holdings. Hunter served on the board until early 2019.
  • At the time, a news release from the company said Hunter would be “in charge of the Holdings’ legal unit and will provide support for the Company among international organizations.”
  • Hunter told the New York Times that the news release was not accurate and he was never in charge of the company’s legal affairs.
  • He joined the company about a month after Russia annexed Crimea, a cataclysmic moment that continues to put the US at odds with Russia and is linked to ongoing conflict in eastern Ukraine.
  • During his time with Burisma, Hunter reportedly received compensation up to $50,000 a month.
  • From the start, Hunter’s role at Burisma was criticized by ethics watchdogs as a conflict of interest for his father, who was still vice president at the time and heavily focused on pressuring Ukraine to do a better job rooting out corruption. But some ethics watchdogs at the time also said that unless there was clear evidence Hunter got the job to influence US foreign policy then there was no cause for concern.
  • His hiring by Burisma was seen as an attempt by the company to bolster its image and the perception it had strong ties to the US as the world vilified Russia for its annexation of Crimea, the Times reported.
  • Yoshiko M. Herrera, a professor of political science at the University of Wisconsin at Madison and an an expert on Russia and Eurasia, told The Washington Post: “I think there is a conflict of interest even if it doesn’t break any laws. It’s a big deal. It’s the vice president, who is the point person of the Obama administration’s policy on Ukraine, and his son is suddenly hired to be a director on the board of Ukraine’s largest private gas producer.” READ MORE

Biden Made Ukraine Fire Top Prosecutor Investigating Son’s Firm

Listen to Joe Biden bragging about withholding funds to Ukraine if a top prosecutor wasn’t fired, hmm, why does that sound familiar? 🤔 That prosecutor also, just coincidentally, was investigating Joe Biden’s son, Hunter, who was making $50,000 per month working for Burisma Holdings. Hmm, again. Now can you see why the Democrats want so badly to impeach President Trump? I sure do. 

Trump ordered aid frozen; more Democrats want impeachment

FROM THE AP: President Donald Trump ordered his staff to freeze nearly $400 million in aid to Ukraine a few days before a phone call in which he pressured the Eastern European nation’s leader to investigate the family of political rival Joe Biden, a revelation that comes as more Democrats move toward impeachment proceedings.

Trump, in remarks to reporters at the United Nations on Tuesday, confirmed that he held up the aid but said he did so to fight corruption and urge European nations to share in helping out Ukraine.

“As far as withholding funds, those funds were paid,” Trump said. “They were fully paid. But my complaint has always been, and I’d withhold again and I’ll continue to withhold until such time as Europe and other nations contribute to Ukraine.” He named Germany and France as among the countries that should “put up money.”

He also used the moment to again suggest that the Biden family inappropriately benefited from their ties to Ukraine.

Trump’s order was first reported by The Washington Post and was confirmed to The Associated Press by two people familiar with but not authorized to discuss private conversations. They spoke on the condition of anonymity.

Late Monday, an influential group of freshmen Democrats who served in the military and national security before winning office said Trump’s actions cut to the core of the country’s defenses. Their views, as centrist lawmakers from previously Republican-held districts where Trump has been popular, hold sway with party leadership.

The fresh calls for impeachment proceedings come as House Democrats are heading into a closed-door meeting Tuesday with Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

Nancy Pelosi and her leadership team on the various oversight committees are considering bringing forward a resolution that will put the House on the record on this matter, according to a Democratic leadership aide unauthorized to discuss the private talks. The aide was granted anonymity.

Still, Democrats remained divided on moving forward with an effort to impeach Trump. Pelosi has resisted calls for impeachment and is sticking with her position that Congress must not start formal proceedings unless the American public demands it.

However, Pelosi said Sunday that unless the administration provides more information to Congress by the scheduled Thursday hearing at the intelligence committee, its officials “will be entering a grave new chapter of lawlessness which will take us into a whole new stage of investigation.” READ MORE

Calls For Impeachment Grow From Democrats

Several moderate House Democrats are joining the call to impeach President Trump. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi will meet with key committee chairs Tuesday afternoon, before her entire Democratic caucus discusses the whistleblower complaint about Mr. Trump’s phone call with Ukraine’s president. Nancy Cordes reports.

via Fake News Media Salivating As 145 House Democrats Order 4PM Meeting Today On Beginning Impeachment Hearings On President Trump, But What About Burisma Holdings? — Now The End Begins