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He Resolved Not To

In category:

A Cup of Wine

There was once a young man who was faced with a very serious moral dilemma. Would he follow the example of those around him and obey those in authority over him, or would he remain faithful to God? The youth’s name was Daniel. You can read his story in the Bible in the book named for him.

Because the Jewish people were unfaithful to their covenant with God, God had to let them suffer the consequences. The Babylonians conquered the land and sent many of the people into exile. “Then the king ordered Ashpenaz, chief of his court officials, to bring in some of the Israelites from the royal family and the nobility—young men without any physical defect, handsome, showing aptitude for every kind of learning, well informed, quick to understand, and qualified to serve in the king's palace. He was to teach them the language and literature of the Babylonians. The king assigned them a daily amount of food and wine from the king’s table. They were to be trained for three years, and after that they were to enter the king’s service. Among these were some from Judah: Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah.” (Daniel 1:3-6 NIV)

Zero Cost Worship?

In category:

Altars For Sacrifice

It is a natural human tendency to feel uncomfortable around those who have less than we. We are especially uncomfortable around those, who through no fault of their own, are suffering want. We sympathize with those who are unable to find work. We feel for those whose illness or misfortune has consumed their resources, leaving them little to live on. Their need makes us conscious of how blessed we are.

Providing For Relatives

In category:

Eating From A Common Pot

There are many times in life when we are perplexed and don’t know what to do. Perhaps we are faced with several choices and don’t know which of them would be best. Perhaps we are in a situation where there seems to be no solution at all and wonder if there is a different way to approach the problem. Sometimes the most difficult situation we face is determining what God’s will is. We want to do what is right. We want to please God. Yet, what is it He desires in this particular situation?

Who Is Going To Harm You?

In category:

Medical Help

The Apostle Peter wrote a letter to reassure some badly frightened people. They were frightened because others were speaking maliciously against them. It went beyond mere words. In addition to insults these people also faced threats of court action against them and worse.

Impossible Odds

In category:

Shooter on Camel

What do we do when faced with an unsurmountable problem? What do we do when it appears that there is no way out? Faced with impossible odds many people become cynical, “Since there’s nothing I can do about the situation, I’m going to ignore it. I might as well take as much pleasure as I can today because tomorrow everything will fall apart.” Other people give way to despair, “Nothing will make any difference so I won’t even try to do anything. I hope the end comes quickly.” Still others rage against fate and lash out against others, “This isn’t fair! Since the universe won’t give me what is mine, I’ll take what I can from you!” However, there is a better response.

Do Not Be Afraid

In category:

A Graveyard

Fear! Fear is all around us. In the uncertain times in which we live people fear many things. Perhaps we, ourselves, are not immune from the dread of what might happen.

What is it that we fear? There are many types and forms of fear. For example, we fear what others might think of us. We fear being shamed or embarrassed. We fear pain. We fear the feeling of helplessness or not being in control.

Then You Will Prosper

In category:

Counting Money

How do we measure prosperity? When we say, “That man is prosperous,” what so we mean? Most people probably think of prosperity in terms of money, property and possessions. The more someone has of these things, the more prosperous we consider him.

Most people also consider prosperity a good thing. We want more of it – meaning we want more money, property and things. And it is true that, at least up to a point, money and possessions can ease our way through life. Wealth opens doors and opportunities which would otherwise be closed to us.

Because He Humbled Himself

In category:

A Man Bowing Down

There was once a wicked king who deliberately chose to do evil. He practiced sorcery, divination and witchcraft. He consulted mediums and spiritists. He worshiped the stars instead of God who made them. He built shrines and erected altars to pagan gods. He also desecrated God’s Temple in Jerusalem by installing a carved image of one of his own gods in it. He even went so far as to burn up some of his own sons as sacrifices to his gods.

Godly Living = Persecution?

In category:

A Burned-Out House

We tend to think that someone who lives a moral and righteous life will have less trouble and problems than those who ignore or actively oppose God’s standards. We also tend to think that those who are going through trouble are being punished by God or are under God’s curse. In some cases we may be correct to think this way.

On the other hand, we all know of wicked people who are prosperous and seem to have no troubles at all. And uprightness is no guarantee of a trouble-free life. We have seen righteous and godly people who are forced to endure all kinds of trouble and affliction. The Holy Scriptures go far as to say, “ In fact, everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted,” (2 Timothy 3:12 NIV)

Taken Away

In category:

Home Destroyed By Flood

Why do we become angry when something in our possession is taken away or is destroyed? Usually it is because we view the things in our possession as belonging to us. They are ours. Therefore, when we lose the use of them we consider it as harm done to ourselves.

But do we really own anything? What do we have that we can truly say we have created from nothing and, therefore, is ours exclusively? We might say, “It is mine because I bought it with my hard-earned money!” Or we might say, “This book is mine because I wrote it!” All this is is true. Yet, in reality the ability to earn money to purchase things and the mind to create things does not come from within ourselves, but from God. Everything we have, ultimately comes from the One who gave it to us. The Apostle Paul asks an important question, “...What do you have that you did not receive? And if you did receive it, why do you boast as though you did not?” (1 Corinthians 4:7 NIV)