How important it is not to settle for a superficial religion

Judges 7:8b-8:35; John 5:31-47; Proverbs 11:19-28 “No sooner had Gideon died than the Israelites again prostituted themselves to the Baals” (Judges 8:33). “John was a lamp that burned and gave light, and you chose for a time to enjoy his light” (John 5:35) – “For a time”, but note their response to Jesus -”I have …

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How, Lord, can we even begin to fear You and keep Your commandments when our hearts are full of sin?

Ecclesiastes 11:1-12:14 “Fear God and keep His commandments” (Ecclesiastes 12:13). Lord, we read these words, and we wonder, “How can we even begin to fear You and keep Your commandments when our hearts are full of sin?” We ask, “How can our hearts be cleansed from sin?” We cannot do this for ourselves. Only You …

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The Lord is looking for His people to stand up and be counted as His faithful servants.

Deuteronomy 29:1-30:10; Luke 18:31-19:10; Proverbs 10:1-10 The Lord is looking for His people to stand up and be counted as His faithful servants. There is a commitment to be made, a commitment to be maintained. It is not only beginning with Christ. It is going on with Him. This is illustrated in the story of …

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‘Obedience and Blessing’ or ‘Disobedience and Curse’?

Deuteronomy 27:1-28:68 Obedience and blessing or disobedience and curse - This was the choice which was set before the people of God. It is still the same choice today. What a difference there is between the two ways - the way of obedience and the way of disobedience, the way of blessing and the way …

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We thank You, Lord, that Jesus teaches us the way to live wisely.

Proverbs 15:1-33 “The path of life leads upward for the wise” (Proverbs 15:24). Where, Lord, does wisdom come from? It comes from Jesus. We look to Him, and we are led in the way that leads to the “Father’s House” (John 14:2-3,6). “Better is a little with the fear of the Lord than great treasure and …

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Great is Thy faithfulness.

I will sing of the Lord’s great love forever; with my mouth I will make your faithfulness known through all generations. I will declare that your love stands firm forever, that you have established your faithfulness in heaven itself (Psalm 89, verses 1 and 2). Singing of the Lord's great love: this lies at the heart of …

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Thy hand, O God, has guided Thy flock from age to age.

Future generations will be told about the Lord (Psalm 22:30). We look back to the Old Testament. We look back to the New Testament. We wonder, "Is this just ancient history?" We ask, "Does all of this have anything to do with us in today's world?" Here, God's Word gives us God's answer to our …

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Lord, You do not keep Your distance from us – and You do not keep Your silence.

Psalm 50:1-23 “Our God comes, He does not keep silence… God the Lord speaks” (Psalm 50:3,1). We thank You, Lord, that You do not keep Your distance from us. You come near to us. We thank You that You do not keep Your silence. You speak to us. How do You come near to us? …

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The Name of Jesus is the Name of our salvation.

"Whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved" (Joel 2:32: Romans 10:13). From the prophet Joel and the apostle Paul, we have this great promise of God. Between the prophet and the apostle, there is Jesus, the Saviour. The prophet points forward to Him. The apostle looks back to Him. The name, Jesus, was …

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God’s Word – Unchanged, Unchanging, Unchangeable

Some people say, “Surely, you don’t believe the Bible.” They say that the Bible belongs to the past. It’s not for us today. This kind of talk takes us right back to the Garden of Eden – “Did God really say?” (Genesis 3:1).  The Bible says that “all Scripture is given by inspiration of God?” …

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Being strengthened by the Lord and sharing His Word with others

Matthew 5:1-2 Here, we have the introduction to 'the Sermon on the Mount' (chapters 5-7). Reference is made to both 'the disciples' and 'the crowds'. The disciples are taught with a view to becoming teachers of the crowds. Peter learned from Christ and later he taught the crowds (Acts 2:14-42). The Sermon on the Mount …

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Passion Sunday (Palm Sunday): Isaiah 50:4-7; Philippians 2:6-11; Matthew 26:14-27,66

Isaiah 50:4-7: Philippians 2:6-11; Matthew 26:14-27,66 Listening to God and speaking for Him ‘The Lord God has given me the tongue of those who are taught, that I may know how to sustain with a word him that is weary. He wakens me morning by morning, wakens my ear to listen like one being taught’ …

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Tell me the old, old story of Jesus and his love.

We wait in hope for the Lord; he is our help and our shield. In him our hearts rejoice, for we trust in his holy name. May your unfailing love be with us, Lord, even as we put our hope in you (Psalm 33:20-22). Here, we focus on the word, "hope." What do the politicians and economists have to …

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“He knows the way that I take; when He has tested me, I shall come forth as gold” (Job 23:10).

Proverbs 3:19-35 ‘You will walk on your way securely... for the Lord will be your confidence’ (Proverbs 3:23,26). Trusting in the Lord, we are to say, ‘He knows the way that I take; when He has tested me, I shall come forth as gold’ (Job 23:10). Our faith is under threat. There is the danger …

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Called on – from heaven, called on – to heaven

"Our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Saviour from there, the Lord Jesus Christ, who, by the power that enables him to bring everything under his control, will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body" (Philippians 3:20-21) We've only just begun! What we know of the Lord's love, while we're here …

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Help us, Lord, to become the kind of people that You want us to be.

We read about Solomon – he built “his own house”, and he built “the House of the Lord” (1 Kings 6:37-7:1). Which was the most important to him? Which is most important to us – pleasing ourselves or serving You? Help us, Lord, not to be “lovers of self, lovers of money, lovers of pleasure”. …

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Acts 1-3

ACTS 1:1-26  -  We read, in John 7:39, that ‘the Spirit’ would not be ‘given’ until Jesus was ‘glorified’. Now, as Jesus was about to be ‘taken up... into heaven’, He tells His apostles, ‘the Holy Spirit’ will ‘come upon you’ (11,8). He gives them His Word of promise: ‘I send the promise of my …

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Some Thoughts for Harvest (2)

Harvest Festival: Deuteronomy 8:1-10; Psalm 67; Acts 14:13-17; John 6:24-35 God gave Israel the land. He gives us the Kingdom. It’s a Kingdom which shall never be destroyed.The ‘wilderness’ was a place of ‘testing’. God was ‘disciplining’ His people. He was teaching them to ‘walk in His ways’ (Deuteronomy 8:2, 5-6). In the ‘wilderness’, we …

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The Lord gives us the strength that we need.

Praying Through God's Word

“The Lord said to me, ‘ … I have begun to deliver ,.. Now begin to conquer and possess …'” (Deuteronomy 2:31).

In our walk with the Lord, there is both grace and faith – his grace, our faith. His grace comes first. His grace is reaching out to us – calling for our response. His grace is always greater than our faith. Often, we are deeply aware of our own weakness. The Lord comes to us in our weakness. He says to us, “My grace is sufficient for you. My strength is made perfect in weakness” (2 Corinthians 12:9). As we receive this word from the Lord, he gives us the strength that we need to walk, more closely, with him in the way of faith.

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Overview Of The Old Testament: Leviticus

Leviticus 1-7 Jesus Christ, ‘the Lamb without blemish’, has ‘made atonement’ for sin through the shedding of His ‘precious blood’ (1:3-5; 1 Peter 1:18-19). Christ is the real thing. Israel’s sacrifices are only ‘copies of the heavenly things’, ‘a shadow of the good things to come’ (Hebrews 9:23-24; 10:1,5-10). Christ’s sacrifice covers every sin. No …

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Fourth Sunday of Lent: 1 Samuel 16:1,6-7,10-13; Ephesians 5:8-14; John 9:1-41

Don't settle for second best... ‘Samuel did what the Lord commanded’ (1 Samuel 16:4). Real obedience comes from ‘the heart’. It is more than just ‘keeping up appearances’(1 Samuel 16:7). ‘The heart of the matter is the matter of the heart’ – This is something we must never forget!’. ‘It’s the presence of Your Spirit, …

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Special Days – Michaelmas: 2 Kings 6:8-17; Psalm 103:19-22; Revelation 12:7-12a; Matthew 18:1-6, 10

Our love for God is grounded in His love for us. Elisha was ‘the man of God’ (2 Kings 6:6, 9, 15). This was the important thing about him. More than anything else, he was ‘the man of God’. We find the same phrase in 1 Timothy 6:11 - ‘But as for you, man of …

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Prayer and the ministry of God’s Word

Nineteenth Sunday after Pentecost: Exodus 17:1-7; Psalm 78:1-4, 12-16 or Ezekiel 18:1-4, 25-32; Psalm 25:1-9; Philippians 2:1-13; Matthew 21:23-32 Prayer and the ministry of God’s Word Worldly people create problems (Exodus 17:3). Moses asks, ‘What shall I do...?’ (Exodus 17:4). Indecision asks, ‘Is the Lord among us or not?’ (Exodus 17:7). He gives victory (Exodus …

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What matters most to you – the things of this world or the new life in Christ?

"Turn my eyes away from worthless things; preserve my life according to Your Word." (Psalm 119:37) What matters most to you - the things of this world or the new life in Christ? In our hearts, we know that there is really no contest, but, sadly, we, very often, take our eyes off Jesus, and …

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