God’s Word is always more important than our words, and Jesus is always more important than we are.

How then can we be saved? (Isaiah 64:5). What must I do to be saved?... Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved (Acts 16:30-31).' We think of our sin, and we ask the question, "How then can we be saved?" Is there a way of salvation for us? Can our sins be forgiven? …

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Fron every tribe and nation and people and language

"With your blood you purchased for God persons from every tribe and language and people and nation" (Revelation 5:9). To Abraham, the Word of God was spoken: "All peoples on earth will be blessed through you" (Genesis 12:3). In the one hundredth Psalm, we have a call to worship: "Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth" (verse …

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Moving beyond a general prayer for God’s help to a personal experience and enjoyment of God’s salvation

"Help me, Lord my God; save me according to your unfailing love" (Psalm 109:26). When we're going through hard times, we come to the Lord and ask for his help. Is this only a prayer for partcularly hard times? It is that, but it is, also, more than that. Is there ever a time when we can …

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Journey though the New Testament: Acts

Acts 1-4 ‘You shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you“ (1:8). We cannot fill ourselves with the Spirit. We can only ‘be filled with the Spirit’ (Ephesians 5:18). Waiting for the Spirit, the apostles ‘devote themselves to prayer’ (1:14). They do not earn the Holy Spirit as a reward for spending much time …

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More than Duty Giving and Grudge Giving – Let there be Thanksgiving.

Acts 20:17-21:14 From Paul's farewell to the Ephesian elders, there are some lessons for all of us. (a) 'Repentance to God' and 'faith in our Lord Jesus Christ' (21) - This is not only a call for conversion. It is for every believer - all the time. (b) 'Take heed to yourselves and to all …

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The Gospel is preached. There is blessing. We say, “God has done this.”

Acts 13:44-14:28 When God is working powerfully through His servants, there is always the tendency to attach too much importance to the servants. We must resist this temptation. The glory belongs to God alone. We must never forget: 'We too are only men, human like you'. God has called us to 'bring Good News' to …

Continue reading The Gospel is preached. There is blessing. We say, “God has done this.”

Awakening – when the Lord’s people pray earnestly

2 Kings 3:1-4:37; Acts 21:1-26; Psalm 78:56-72 “Then the Lord awoke from sleep” (Psalm 78:65). When the Lord awakes from sleep, there is awakening. In 2 Kings 4:32-35, we see an example of such awakening - resurrection from the dead. How does such awakening come? It comes when the Lord’s people pray earnestly, with actions as …

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The Lord bless you and keep you.

"Blessed is the one whose transgression is forgiven" (Psalm 32:1). The forgiveness of sins - this is such a great blessing. The forgiveness of sins: it's just the beginning of so much great blessing which will continue throughout our life on earth and for all eternity. "Create in me a clean heart, O God,    and renew a right spirit within …

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When we face determined opposition, we draw our strength from God’s Word: “Take courage.”

Acts 22:17-23:35 A Jew, 'praying in the temple' at 'Jerusalem', Paul was obedient to God's call - 'I will send you far away to the Gentiles' (22:17,21). The racists would not hear of this - 'Away with such a fellow from the earth! For he ought not to live' (22:22). This was not simply dislike …

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Let us listen to Jesus, and, when we speak for Jesus, may He speak through us to others.

Acts 24:1-27 Paul did not abandon the teaching of the Old Testament Scriptures - 'I worship the God of our fathers, believing everything laid down by the law or written in the prophets (14). He read the Old Testament. It led him to Christ. Paul's great theme was 'faith in Christ Jesus' (24). Paul speaks. …

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Do you have a story to tell? Tell your story: This is what the Lord has done for me; What He’s done for me, He can do for you.

Acts 26:1-32 Paul answers three questions concerning himself. He puts a most important question to his hearers. (a) What was I before my conversion? Here, he speaks of his religion - 'According to the strictest party of my religion I have lived as a Pharisee' (5). This brought him 'to the ground' (14). (b) How …

Continue reading Do you have a story to tell? Tell your story: This is what the Lord has done for me; What He’s done for me, He can do for you.

When we feel like giving up, God’s Word encourages us to keep on going.

Acts 18:1-21 It was not an easy situation at Corinth. There were some who 'opposed Paul and became abusive' (6). There was great pressure on Paul. He could have given up very easily. It was God's Word which kept Paul going (10). Paul did not collapse under thee pressure - 'he stayed a year and …

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Make sure that you don’t “neglect such a great salvation.”

Acts 27:1-44 There is, in this story, a great picture of God's way of salvation. (a) Our human situation is hopeless: 'All our hope of being saved was at last abandoned' (20). We are sinners. We cannot save ourselves. (b) There is hope: 'God has granted you all those who sail with you' (25). God …

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Let us bring Christ to the nations.

Baptism of the Lord (First Sunday in Ordinary Time): Isaiah 42:1-4,6-7; Acts 10:34-38; Matthew 3:13-17 Let us bring Christ to the nations. Let us serve the Lord in the power of the Spirit. ‘Here is My Servant, whom I uphold, my Chosen One in whom I delight; I will put My Spirit on Him, and …

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Don’t miss God’s opportunities to share Christ’s Good News!

Acts 28:1-31 Read of Paul's protection from the 'snake'. 'Rejoice' - Christ has won for us a great victory over 'that ancient serpent, who is called the Devil and Satan'. When God gives us His victory, we must not think too highly of ourselves - 'he was a god'. We must give all the glory …

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What must I do to be saved? Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved?

The question is asked: "What must I do to be saved?" (Acts 16:30). The answer is given: "Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved" (Acts 16:31). Sometimes, when questions come into our minds, we wonder if we will ever receive an answer. The more we think about it, the more we come …

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The resurrection of Christ opens up for us a glorious future.

Acts 23-25 "The resurrection of the dead" was a central theme in Paul's preaching: "It is for our hope in the resurrection of the dead that I am on trial" (chapter 23); "It is about the resurrection of the dead that I am on trial before you today" (chapter 24). His teaching concerning the resurrection …

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In the eyes of men, Paul was a prisoner. In the plan of God, he was a witness.

Acts 26-38 In addressing King Agrippa, Paul focuses attention on the resurrection: "Why does it seem incredible to you that God should raise the dead?" (chapter 26). Paul proclaimed that "Christ... as the first to rise from the dead... was to proclaim that light now shone for our people and for the pagans too" (chapter …

Continue reading In the eyes of men, Paul was a prisoner. In the plan of God, he was a witness.

As Paul travelled from place to place, the good news of Christ’s love was reaching more and more people.

Acts 20-22 As we read about Paul, travelling from place to place, we come to appreciate the geographical breadth of his ministry. In chapter 22, we see the spiritual depth of his ministry. This spiritual depth arises out of his real, life-changing experience of the salvation which had come to him through the Lord Jesus …

Continue reading As Paul travelled from place to place, the good news of Christ’s love was reaching more and more people.

Peter and Paul, working together to bring many people to Christ

Acts 14-16 Here, we see the great influence of both Peter and Paul in the life and witness of the early church. In chaoters 14 and 16, we have the ministry of Paul. In chapter 15, we see Peter giving his support to Paul's ministry. He does this by emphasizing that the Gospel is for …

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The good news of Christ is for people of every nation.

Acts 11-13 Peter's taking the Gospel to Cornelius opened the way for the Gospel to go the Gentiles. In chapter 11, Peter emphasizes that the Gospel is for the Gentiles. In chapter 13, Paul, the apostle to the Gentiles, emphasizes that the Gospel for all nations is rooted in God's revelation to the Jews. While …

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God’s work goes from strength to strength.

Acts 7-8 In chapter 7, through a history of God's dealings with Israel, Stephen exposes the sin and guilt of hts accusers, They react violently, and Stephen is stoned to death. Saul watched this, and "entirely approved of the killing" (8:1). Saul went on from there, "working for the total desctruction of the church" (chapter …

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Jesus is taken up into heaven. The Holy Spirit is given to us.

Ascension of the Lord: Acts 1:1-11; Psalm 47 or 93 or Daniel 7:9-14; Psalm 24:7-10; Ephesians 1:15-23; Luke 24:44-53 Jesus is taken up into heaven. The Holy Spirit is given to us. 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 …

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Witnessing for Christ, in the power of the Holy Spirit.

Acts 1-3 The Lord Jesus called His disciples to be His witnesses, in the power of the Holy Spirit. They prayed that the power of God would come upon them (chapter 1). The Lord sent the Holy Spirit to them. They were were epowered by the Holy Spirit. Their ministry was blessed by God. It …

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At every stage of our life’s journey, the Lord is there – with us and for us.

How did the world begin? How will the world end? Who was there when the world began? Who will be there when the world ends? How and Who - these are quite different questions. The How question wonders about the beginning and the end. What happened? What will happen? The Who question takes us beyond …

Continue reading At every stage of our life’s journey, the Lord is there – with us and for us.

There is no god who can compare with the Lord.

2 Kings 16:1-17:41; Acts 26:24-27:12; Psalm 81:8-16 “They followed worthless idols and themselves became worthless” (2 Kings 17:15). There is no god who can compare with the Lord (Psalm 81:9-10). He alone is worthy of praise. He alone gives value to our lives by bringing fulfilment to them: “Open wide your mouth and I will …

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The good news for sinners: our Saviour is greater than our sin.

 "Although I am less than the least of all the Lord’s people, this grace was given me: to preach to the Gentiles the boundless (or unsearchable) riches of Christ" (Ephesians 3:8). This post continues on from an earlier post, which contrasts Paul and Jesus. You may find it helpful to read that post before reading this one. …

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Words from a faraway place and a long ago time, words for today, words for us

"The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off—for all whom the Lord our God will call" (Acts 2:39). When Peter preached to the crowds on the day of Pentecost , he wasn't preaching only to the people who were in Jerusalem on that day. He was preaching "for all …

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When we preach Christ crucified, let us, also, preach that he is the risen Lord.

"We preach Christ crucified" (1 Corinthians 1:23). In his preaching. Paul "reasoned with people from the Scriptures" (Acts 17:2), but he did not say, "We preach Isaiah", "We preach Jeremiah" or "We preach... ." He said, "We preach Christ crucified." When Paul spoke about the death of Christ, he spoke about the love of God: …

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Let us rejoice in Jesus, God’s Son. Let us rejoice in Jesus, our Saviour.

"God's Son, Jesus Christ our Lord" was "declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead" (Romans 1:3-4). This post is a continuation of my earlier post, "This is my Son. This is your Saviour." You should, really, read that post before reading …

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This is my Son. This is your Saviour.

"God has raised this Jesus to life, and we are all witnesses of it... God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Christ" (Acts 2:32,36). On the day of Pentecost, Peter preached Jesus, the risen Lord. What are we to say about Jesus and the resurrection? Did Jesus become the Lord and the Christ when …

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Heaven came down and glory filled my soul.

"Building a tower and making a name for ourselves" (Genesis 11:4) There is no salvation in ourselves. Salvation is in Christ alone (Acts 4:12). The Lord is our "strong tower" (Proverbs 18:10). Salvation doesn't begin with ourselves. It comes to us from Christ: "Who came down from heaven to earth? - Jesus Christ, our Saviour." …

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God’s purpose is moving forward.

1 Kings 1:1-2:12; Acts 10:23b-11:18; Psalm 74:10-17 God’s purpose does not stand still. It moves forward. “So Solomon sat on the throne of his father, David, and his rule was firmly established” (1 Kings 2:12). “The circumcised believers … were astonished that the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out even on the …

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Our limited understanding and God’s revelation

"God has set eternity in the human heart, yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end" (Ecclesiastes 3:11).  God has given us some understanding of himself, but we do not understand everything all that he is doing in our lives and in our world. There are two thoughts here, and …

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When Christ is preached, the Lord opens the hearts of men and women to respond to Him.

1 Kings 12:25-14:20; Acts 16:1-15; Psalm 78:1-8 "The Lord will raise up for Himself a king over Israel" (1 Kings 14:14). There was much "sin" among God's people (1 Kings 13:33-34). God did not abandon His purpose of salvation. His saving purpose finds its fulfilment in Christ. He is the Gospel ("Good News") which God has …

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The importance of a teaching ministry: an in-depth ministry, not a superficial ministry

Acts 17-19 Here, we see that the preaching of the Gospel which is grounded in the Scrptures. In chaoter 17, Paul spoke "from Scripture." In chapter 18, we read about Apollos who "demonstrated from the Scriptures that Jesus was the Christ." In Paul's preaching, the message was "the Christ is this Jesus." When we preach …

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“… the church of God which He purchased with His own blood” (Acts 20:28)

 "Therefore take heed to yourselves and to all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood" (Acts 20:28). As you read this verse from God's Word, note its last few words: "the church of God which He purchased with His own blood." This …

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This is what the Lord says.

1 Kings 20:1-21:29; Acts 18:9-19:13; Psalm 78:32-39 As a prophet of God, Elijah brought this message to the people: "This is what the Lord says" (1 Kings 21:19). This was Paul's ministry: "teaching them the Word of God" (Acts 18:11). Elijah's ministry was the denunciation of the evil king, Ahab. Paul's ministry was the proclamation …

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I will tell him only what the Lord tells me.

1 Kings 22:1-53; Acts 19:14-41; Proverbs 15:31-16:7 Here's a spiritual principle for everyone who seeks to be faithful to God: "As surely as the Lord lives, I can tell him only what the Lord tells me" (1 Kings 22:14). In Ephesus, there was a riot. The crowds shouted, "Great is Artemis ("Diana" in the King James …

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The love of power… and the power of love

"Where the word of a king is, there is power; And who may say to him, “What are you doing?”" (Ecclesiastes 8:4).  "You  shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth” (Acts 1:8). What do we mean when we speak …

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