Responding to God’s Word (44): When I survey the wondrous cross

God forbid that I should boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ (Galatians 6:14). What a wonderful Saviour we have! He died for us, and he rose again for us. He has given to us his free gift of salvation. He has forgiven our sins. He lives in our hearts. He's leading …

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Responding to God’s Word (43): One day when heaven was filled with his praises…

We preach Christ crucified (1 Corinthians 1:23). What we preach is not ourselves but Jesus Christ as Lord (2 Corinthians 4:5). As I was reading these verses about Jesus Christ, our Saviour and Lord, I found this song of praise, arising in my heart. May God help each of us to think, often, of Jesus, …

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Our great privilege and our great responsibility

"Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own? For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s" (1 Corinthians 6:19-20). These verses speak to us …

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Responding to God’s Word (42): You will be saved.

If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved (Romans 10:9). How are we to respond to God's Word? Here, Paul tells us: confess with your mouth and believe in your heart. What is to be our confession …

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Responding to God’s Word (41): Open my eyes that I may see.

We will give our attention to prayer and the ministry of the word (Acts 6:4). "Love your neighbour as yourself" (Matthew 22:39): this is part of what the Lord has to say to us, but it is not all that he has to say to us. Some people may tell us that this is all …

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Responding to God’s Word (40): O the blood of Jesus, it washes white as snow.

These things are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name (John 20:31). As we read the Word of God, we are led to Jesus, our Saviour. We learn, from 1 Corinthians 15:3, that he "died for our …

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Responding to God’s Word (39): More, more about Jesus

He explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning himself (Luke 24:27). When we are gathered together for worship, we pray that we will hear more than the words of the preacher. We come with the question, "What does Jesus have to say to us?" Jesus speaks to us "concerning himself." Jesus …

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Responding to God’s Word (38): Glory To His Name

The good news of Jesus Christ, the Son of God (Mark 1:1) At the heart of God's Word, there is good news. At the heart of our response to God's Word, there is to be thanksgiving for this good news. In today's world, we search for good news. It's not easy to find. There is …

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Responding to God’s Word (35): King of kings and Lord of lords

The Lord shall be King over all the earth (Zechariah 14:9). As I read this verse, my thoughts went to the words of Revelation 19:16, where our Lord is described as "King of kings and Lord of lords." May God help each of us to lift up our hearts and voices, in praise, to Jesus …

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Responding to God’s Word (34): Emmanuel, God is with us

I am with you, says the Lord (Haggai 1:13). These are words that come to us from a long ago. They are words that we still need to hear. We need to listen to what God says to us. He tells us that he is with us. We look back to the times when God …

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Responding to God’s Word (33): A wonderful Saviour is Jesus my Lord.

The Lord your God is with you, the Mighty Warrior who saves. He will take great delight in you; in his love he will no longer rebuke you, but will rejoice over you with singing (Zephaniah 3:17). What a wonderful verse this is! We have a great Saviour. His name is Jesus (Matthew 1:21). He …

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Responding to God’s Word (32): A debtor to mercy alone

The righteous will live by faith or faithfulness (Habakkuk 2:4). God is calling us to have faith, and he's calling us to be faithful. We begin with faith in Christ. It is through faith in Christ that we receive God's gift of salvation. Through faith in Christ, we receive the strength that we need to …

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Responding to God’s Word (31): God is our strength and refuge.

The Lord is good, a refuge in times of trouble. He cares for those who trust in him (Nahum 1:7). Trouble and trust: we cannot just wish away our times of troube, but we can trust in the Lord in our times of trouble. When we trust in the Lord, he will give us the …

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Responding to God’s Word (30): Spirit of the living God, fall afresh on me.

I am filled with power, with the Spirit of the Lord (Micah 3:8). Here, the Word of God speaks to us about power, and it speaks to us about the Spirit of the Lord. In 2 Timothy 1:7, the power of the Spirit of God is contrasted with "the spirit of fear." When we read …

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Responding to God’s Word (29): There’s a way back to God from the dark paths of sin.

The word of the Lord came to Jonah a second time (Jonah 3:1). A second time, a third time... time and time again, the word of the Lord comes to us. God keeps on calling on us. He's calling us to make a new beginning with him. We have not walked very closely with God. …

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Responding to God’s Word (28): We have heard the joyful sound, Jesus saves.

We have heard a message from the Lord (Obadiah, verse 1). The message that we bring to the world is not one that we, ourselves, have made up. We have received this message from the Lord. What kind of message has the Lord given to us? It's the message of salvation. It's a message that's …

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Responding to God’s Word (27): Hallelujah! What a Saviour!

O Lord God, forgive (Amos 7:2). Here, we have a prayer for forgiveness. It's a prayer that every one of us must pray. However much we may wish to think good thoughts about ourselves, every one of us must face our dark side: we are sinners. However much we may dislike being called sinners, we …

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Responding to God’s Word (26): Rejoice in the Lord, O let his mercy cheer… If God be for us, who can be against us?

"Rejoice in the Lord your God" (Joel 2:23). We search for happiness. What is happiness? There are times when we are happy. There are times when we are sad. Our circumstances change. Our emotions change. What about God? Does he change? Does he stop loving us when we're going through hard times. No! He doesn't …

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Responding to God’s Word (25): It is well with my soul.

I will make the Valley of Achor (trouble) a door of hope (Hosea 2:15). Is there such a thing as a trouble-free life? No! There isn't. We might like to think that trouble won't ever come our way, but we're kidding ourselves, if we think like that. One way or another, trouble comes to all of …

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Responding to God’s Word (24): Change, my heart, O God / Come, let us join our cheerful songs…

The God of heaven will set up a kingdom that will never be destroyed... it will endure forever (Daniel 2:44). As I read this verse about the kingdom of God, I found myself asking the question, "What will it be like in the kingdom of God?" As I was thinking about this question, I found …

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Responding to God’s Word (23): Be still, for the presence of the Lord, the Holy One, is here.

The Lord is there (Ezekiel 48:35). As I read the final words of the book of Ezekiel, I began to think about life. Where is life leading us? Are we on our own? or Is the Lord with us, in the hard times as well as the happy times? Is there light at the end …

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Let us worship God – with joyful thanksgiving.

‘Come, let us sing for joy to the Lord… Let us come before Him with thanksgiving… Come, let us bow down in worship… ’ (Psalm 95:1-2,6). Lord, You’re calling us to worship You with joyful thanksgiving. We rejoice in You. We give thanks for Your love. You are ‘the great God’. You are ‘our God’. You are the God of creation – ‘In His …

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Responding to God’s Word (19): I am my beloved’s, and he is mine / Loved with everlasting love / Blessed assurance

I am my beloved's, and he is mine (Song of Solomon 6:3). How are we to respond to these precious and treasured words of joyful testimony? May we let them speak to our hearts. May they bring joy to our hearts. May the song of joyful praise arise in our hearts. https://youtu.be/gsPB6zgd184 https://youtu.be/oJuRdcEIsxM https://youtu.be/rDeiy9-t2GE

Responding to God’s Word (22): Great is Thy faithfulness.

Great is Thy faithfulness (Lamentations 3:23). When things start to go wrong for us, we start to wonder, "What's going to happen next?" When it seems like everything's going from bad to worse, we need to be reminded of God's faithfulness. However hard our pathway through life may be, may each of us receive blessing …

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Responding to God’s Word (21): Amazing grace

Then I will give you shepherds after my own heart, who will lead you with knowledge and understanding (Jeremiah 3:15). You will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart (Jeremiah 29:13). The Word of God is preached to us by his faithful servants. They study the Word of the Lord. They pray that …

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Responding to God’s Word (20): To God be the glory!

Lord, you are my God; I will exalt you and praise your name, for in perfect faithfulness, you have done wonderful things, things planned long ago (Isaiah 25:1). See, I will create new heavens and a new earth. The former things will not be remembered, nor will they come to mind. But be glad and rejoice forever …

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Responding to God’s Word (18): Fill your hearts with joy and gladness.

So I hated life, because the work that is done under the sun was grievous to me (Ecclesiastes 2:17). To the person who pleases him, God gives wisdom, knowledge and happiness (Ecclesiastes 2:26). Guard your steps when you go to the house of God. Go near to listen rather than to offer the sacrifice of …

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Responding to God’s Word (17): All that thrills my soul is Jesus.

From the Lord comes the wise answer of the tongue (Proverbs 16:1). A cheerful heart is good medicine (Proverbs 17:22). We're not always wise. We're not always cheerful. How can we become more wise? How can we become more cheerful? Wisdom and cheerfulness come to us from the Lord. There's a close connection between wisdom and cheerfulness. …

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Responding to God’s Word (16): His name is wonderful; Jesus, my Lord.

One thing I ask from the Lord, this only do I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life (Psalm 27:4). Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever (Psalm 23:6). Beyond all the …

Continue reading Responding to God’s Word (16): His name is wonderful; Jesus, my Lord.

Responding to God’s Word (15): Up from the grave He arose / He lives within my heart.

I know that my redeemer lives (Job 19:25). Here, we begin with Job, but we do not remain with Job. The words of Job direct our attention to our Saviour, Jesus Christ, the risen Lord. Whenever we think of the living Lord, we do not begin with Jesus, living in us: "Christ lives in me" …

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Responding to God’s Word (14): There is a green hill far away.

Who knows but that you have come to your royal position for such a time as this?... If I perish, I perish (Esther 4:14,16). We read about Esther, and we think about Jesus. "When the set time had fully come, God sent his Son" (Galatians 4:4). "I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life …

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Responding to God’s Word (13): Faith is the victory that overcomes the world.

Wherever you hear the sound of the trumpet, join us there. Our God will fight for us! (Nehemiah 4:20). Where the gospel of Jesus Christ is being faithfully preached and the Word of God is being faithfully taught, that's where we are to be. That's where the blessing is to be found, where Christ is being lifted …

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Responding to God’s Word (12): Wonderful grace of Jesus, greater than all my sin

The gracious hand of our God is on everyone who looks to him (Ezra 8:22). Here, we have a precious promise which God gives to "everyone who looks to him." We read about the God of grace, and we read about the grace of God. The promise comes to us from the God of grace. The …

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Responding to God’s Word (11): What a friend we have in Jesus.

Look to the Lord and his strength (1 Chronicles 16:11). Help us, Lord our God, for we rely on you (2 Chronicles 14:11). There are times when we feel strong, times when it feels like we're taking everything in our stride. There are times, when it feels like everything seems to be too much for us. When things are going …

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Responding to God’s Word (10): Take my life and let it be, consecrated, Lord, to Thee.

May your hearts be fully committed to the Lord our God, to live by his decrees and obey his commands, as at this time (1 Kings 8:61). Because your heart was responsive and you humbled yourself before the Lord when you heard what I have spoken... I also have heard you, declares the Lord (2 Kings 22:19). There are times, in our lives, …

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Responding to God’s Word (9): O love that will not let me go / A new commandment I give unto you that you love one for another, as I have loved you.

David was greatly distressed... But David found strength in the Lord his God (1 Samuel 30:6). David asked, “Is there anyone still left of the house of Saul to whom I can show kindness for Jonathan’s sake?” (2 Samuel 9:1). Growing strong in the Lord is more than knowing about his love. It's, also, showing his love to …

Continue reading Responding to God’s Word (9): O love that will not let me go / A new commandment I give unto you that you love one for another, as I have loved you.

Responding to God’s Word (7): I am listening, Lord, for thee. What hast thou to say to me?

When the Israelites cried out to the Lord because of Midian, he sent them a prophet, who said, “This is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: I brought you up out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery. I rescued you from the hand of the Egyptians. And I delivered you from the hand of all your oppressors; I drove them …

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Responding to God’s Word (6): I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that He is able to keep that which I’ve committed unto Him against that day.

After the death of Moses the servant of the Lord, the Lord said to Joshua son of Nun, Moses’ aide: “Moses my servant is dead. Now then, you and all these people, get ready to cross the Jordan River into the land I am about to give to them, to the Israelites (Joshua 1:2). Time waits for no-one. The time of Moses had …

Continue reading Responding to God’s Word (6): I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that He is able to keep that which I’ve committed unto Him against that day.

Responding to God’s Word (5): O for a closer walk with God

The Lord our God said to us at Horeb, “You have stayed long enough at this mountain" (Deuteronomy 1:6). A journey that should have taken eleven days turned out to be a journey that lasted for forty years (Deuteronomy 1:2-3). What did God have to say about this? "You have stayed long enough at this mountain." The people of Israel …

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Responding to God’s Word (4): Guide me, O Thou great Jehovah.

We are journeying to the place of which the Lord said, "I will give it to you" (Numbers 10:29). Forward-looking; this is what God is calling us to be. Forward-looking: what does this mean? Forward-looking: how are we to be forward-looking? Does it mean that everything's going to be wonderful in the future? No! It …

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Responding to God’s Word (2): Ask the Saviour to help you, comfort, strengthen and keep you. He is willing to aid you. He will carry you through.

The Lord said, "My presence shall go with you and I will give you rest" (Exodus 33:14). The Lord's people were in the wilderness, but they were not alone. The Lord was with them, and he was leading them to the land that he had promised to give to them. When we feel like we're …

Continue reading Responding to God’s Word (2): Ask the Saviour to help you, comfort, strengthen and keep you. He is willing to aid you. He will carry you through.

Responding to God’s Word (1): In our times of suffering, may we never forget this, the Holy Spirit has been given to us.

God has made me fruitful in the land of my suffering (Genesis 41:52). Here, Joseph speaks to us about suffering, and he speaks to us about fruitfulness. For Joseph, there was suffering before there was fruitfulness. What do we learn from these words of Joseph? There is no pathway that leads to fruitfulness, if we are …

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All glory to the Lord – the God of eternal love, the God of our eternal salvation.

"Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ. For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight" (Ephesians 1:3-4). We sing praise to the Lord. He has blessed us so much - …

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Love has the victory forever.

"Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we boast in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does …

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In our own homes – let us lift up our hearts and voices to the Lord.

The first four worship videos are choruses I remember from my youth. I hope they will encourage you all in the Lord. The first one is sung by a young man, who is, also, playing his guitar. For God so loved the world https://youtu.be/Gl1uoaLVwkM ‘Let us go to the Lord’s House; let us worship before …

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I’m forever grateful / Thank you for the cross.

‘You came near when I called You... O Lord... You redeemed my life’ (Lamentations 3:57-58). We wonder, Lord, ‘Will You answer our prayer for salvation?’ Yes! At the Cross of Christ, we learn that You love us and You answer our prayer. ‘You did not wait for me to draw near to You, but You …

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