Tag Archives: religion

Verse for Today – Hebrews 9:27,28 “EAGERLY AWAITING CHRIST?”

27 Feb

“And as it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment, so Christ was offered once to bear the sins of many. To those who eagerly wait for Him He will appear a second time, apart from sin, for salvation.”

BiblegatEway.com Hebrews 9:27-28

Biblegateway.com Hebrews chapter 9

 

This is an important verse.  For a long time I have understood it as primarily focusing on the fact that men live and die once… And that after this living-and-dying-once it is too late to change one’s spiritual state or future.

As I reflect on this passage today… it does teach what I always thought, but there’s two additional points to be made by what follows.

1. Christ’s atoning death is a once and done event.  It was and is a wholly sufficient payment for all the sins of His people (those who hope in and receive God’s grace).

2. His people are then described as “those who eagerly wait for Him.”

I guess this is the part that intrigued me… Do we eagerly wait for Him? What does, or what should, that look like?  As Chapter 9 concludes and Chapter 10begins, it is clear that we should trust in Christ’s perfect sacrifice for the forgiveness of sins.

Verses 19-25 are worth a careful reading.  Look for the words: “faith,” “hope,” and “love.”

Then notice his final exhortation.  “…not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together as is the manner of some…”  Wonder why?  Short answer: God says so and we can trust He knows what we need.

Advertisements

Verse for Today – Psalm 18:1 The Way We Should Think about God

7 Feb

“I love you, Lord, my strength. The Lord is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.”

Read at Bible Gateway

Read all of Psalm 18

Psalm 18 begins with this preface… which is part of the inspired text:

“To the Chief Musician. Psalm of David the servant of the Lord, who spoke to the Lord the words of this song on the day that the Lord delivered him from the hand of all his enemies and from the hand of Saul. And he said:….”

In other words the Psalm is a memorial to his escape from his enemies.  Notice he doesn’t give himself the credit… his cunning, speed, agility or strength.   Even though he may have had those, he gives credit to God.

He begins with words of affection… even love. “I love you, LORD, my strength.”   His words are (as are ours) a reflection of his heart.  He recognizes that God’s grace has brought him safe thus far and rightly says so.

This leads into a string of affirmations that further describes David’s understand of God.  This is valuable for us to think about, because God doesn’t change.  As He was David’s God, He has become our God.  Just think… He is our rock, our fortress, and our deliverer.  Through the Gospel of Jesus Christ, we find protection and a sure place of safety.  Nothing in all creation can loosen His grip upon those who come to Him with sincere faith.  In Christ, the promise has become reality.

Remember Romans 8:38,39   “For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come,  nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

Amen.

Verse for Today – James 1:2-3 (Click for mini-Blog)

23 Jan

James 1:2-3

“Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.”

Read at Bible Gateway

Read all of James 1

I was looking over all the Verse for Today verses I’ve not written about or forwarded and was caught by this one.  Consider if pure joy… not just joy, but PURE joy when you face trials of many kinds.
Why is that?  Well, the author (James) provides the answer in Verse 3, “because you know….”   We’re supposed to know more than just the unpleasantness of going through trials.  We’re supposed to recognize that we’re going through them for a beneficial reason.  That our faith is being tested, tempered, tried… so that it will produce perseverance.
And what is perseverance and why should we want it?  It is longevity in the faith… endurance to the end.  Without it we would fall short or lose interest.  Trials cause us to rely wholly upon the LORD… and that is what we’re supposed to do all the time.  Hence, God’s word to Paul and us all:  “My grace is sufficient for you, for my strength is made perfect in weakness” (2 Corinthians 12:9).”

Verse for Today – Psalm 2:9-11 (Click for mini-Blog)

7 Dec
“Now therefore, be wise, O kings; Be instructed, you judges of the earth.
Serve the Lord with fear, And rejoice with trembling.
Kiss the Son, lest He be angry, And you perish in the way,
When His wrath is kindled but a little. Blessed are all those who put their trust in Him.”
 These verses from Psalm 2 are remarkably pointed.  They speak prophetically of the coming Messiah… and more.  They warn the mighty, the rich and powerful people of earth.  By logical extension, the commands and warnings to them, are commands and warnings to all (ourselves included).
 
The Kings and Judges of the world might have influence and wealth now, but one day THEY will all give account before the Lord of all.  They are told to respond rightly, with wisdom, to the Christ the Lord.  “Be wise,” “Be instructed,” Serve the LORD with fear and Rejoice with trembling.”  “Kiss the Son.”
 
Why?  Because when He returns, it will be for judgment.  How one responds to the Gospel of Christ makes all the difference.  Those who pay Him no respect will perish; but “blessed are all those who put their trust in Him.”    
 
“God’s grace is free, but it costs you everything.”  If you have questions, I can tell you about the One who has the answers.  🙂

Verse for Today – Colossians 3:16 (Click for mini-Blog)

29 Nov

Colossians 3:16

16 “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.”

The exhortation of this passage was an encouragement to me to send out this Verse for Today. As Christians we’re told that the “all scripture is given by the inspiration of God”… and more than that… “is profitable for teaching, reproving, correcting and training in righteousness” (2 Timothy 3:16).  

 

In much the same way, Today’s Verse is an exhortation to let the Scriptures be advantageous to us.  And how might they benefit to us?  Simply stated, we need to internalize them.  We need to read, remember and meditate upon them.  Have devotions, certainly.  But don’t just check it off your to-do-list.  Let it simmer and stew.  Jot down some important points and remember them.

 

Once we’ve done this, we will be better able to share, teach and encourage one another.  

 

And lastly, don’t under-esteem the value of singing and learning Scriptural songs.   God made us to enjoy and benefit from them.

 

Verse for Today – 1 Peter 5:8-9 (Click for mini-Blog)

31 Oct

“Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that the family of believers throughout the world is undergoing the same kind of sufferings.”

 

Read at Bible Gateway

Read all of 1 Peter 5

 

What does the world do with a verse like this?  Probably nothing.  Depending how they see they world, they might think there’s no need to be alert and watchful.  From their perspective they might think that Satan and evil beings don’t exist.

 

What do Christians do with a verse like this?  It’s something we should think about.  Sometimes Satan pretends to be an Angel of Light (see 2 Corinthians 10) and sounds almost Christian.  He uses deception and seduction to fool people into thinking they’re with him on God’s side when they’re not.  Of this sort are pastors who make you feel good about yourself and entice you with promises of wealth, success and happiness.  They won’t tell you to deny yourself, take up your cross and be ready to suffer for Christ. 

 

In Verses 8 and 9 we’re warned that sometimes Satan doesn’t pretend at all.  He hates God and he hates devoted Christians (see Rev. 12:17).  Sometimes he can ruthlessly persecute and crush them, seemingly at will.  What should Christians do when confronted with evil in this way?  

 

ANSWER: “Be watchful and sober minded.”  “Resist him, standing firm in the faith.”  Stand against evil and the Evil One and you’ve done your job.  In the last part of the verse he connects our trials to those of others around the world… and perhaps throughout history.  With faithful devotion, God will be pleased to either rescue us or welcome us into his eternal kingdom.  Those with genuine faith trust their heavenly Father to provide for them in this life and in the life to come.

 

Verse for Today – Psalm 19:14 (Click for mini-Blog)

19 Oct

“May these words of my mouth and this meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, LORD, my Rock and my Redeemer.”

Read at Bible Gateway

Read all of Psalm 19

Psalm 19 is an important Psalm.  It is the classic reference for the two ways in which God has revealed himself.  He has done so by “General Revelation (vss 1-4) and Special Revelation (vss. 7-11)… that is to say through the creation all around us AND through the self-revelation of His Word. 
 
In other words, for those with eyes to see, the EVIDENCE is everywhere… around us and within.  Examples abound… from birds being able to migrate to places they’ve never been and build nests they’ve never seen, to the way our minds can remember the past, and really even the existence of life at the molecular and chromosomal level.  
 
Special revelation is something else.  It is the visitations and written record of these visits and revelations.  On a practical basis, God’s special revelation is mostly the Bible.  2 Timothy 3:16 says, “All Scripture was given by inspiration of God is profitable…”  It records the truth and teaches us about God, His grace and the work of salvation He accomplished in Christ.  
 
In our Verse for Today, the Psalmist recognizes the importance of the words he is speaking and thoughts he is thinking… that their ultimate standard is God Himself.  
 
We will all be measured by the the same Standard, and so we should all pray this same prayer.