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Daily Devotionals For August 2005

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List of main devotionals written by Jerry for these August 2005 Devotionals (not posted elsewhere on this site):

When Life Doesn't Go As You Planned (Story Of Joseph) - August 6th
My Comments On The Brazen Laver - August 10th
What God Cannot Do - August 16th
 


Daily Devotional for Monday August 1st/05

The following was taken from Thirty-Nine Keys to the Old Testament by William W. Orr. These short studies are basically an overview or highlight of key features and main themes of each of the Old Testament books. They are useful for gathering a quick grasp of the Old Testament.

Key to I CHRONICLES

1. STATISTICS:

Writer, presumably Ezra, scribe and priest (II Chronicles 36:22 and Ezra 1:1, 2). Time of writing 500 B.C. Key thought, kingdom history from sacred standpoint. Key verse, 29:26. Type of book, history and genealogical records. Chronicles means "word of days" or "journal" or "record."

2. THEME:

A condensed history, beginning with Adam and ending with captivity of Jewish nation (including II Chronicles), with emphasis on the reign of David, Israel's greatest king.

3. OUTLINE:

Genealogical records (1-10) Reign of David (11-29).

4. SPECIAL CHARACTERISTICS:

Book is part of a recapitulation of II Samuel but with a different purpose in mind. Writer was concerned with an accurate statistical record for the time in which he was writing and for the future.

Books of Samuel and Kings (102 chapters) cover 585 years of pure history. Prophets are important; kings of both nations are named, special emphasis on prominent ones. Two books of Chronicles (65 chapters) cover 460 years of religious history. Priests are important; they tell only of the good kings of Judah.

Whatever has to do with the temple, purity of its worship, regularity of its services, its preservation or restoration is emphasized. The attitude of the kings to the King of kings is shown to be the key to national success.

The ministry of music is fully set forth; the duties of the Levites were designated and the priesthood was organized into 24 courses. Doorkeepers and treasurers were authorized as well as David's civil servants.

Public worship was given special attention. GOD was seen to be greatly interested in regular assembling of the people to honor Him. It was necessary that there be instruction as to how to make such worship acceptable.

5. OUTSTANDING TEACHINGS:

While in the books of Samuel and Kings we found wars, idolatries, and offenses; in this book are deliverances, repentances, and reformations. In the former, idolatry appears as treason against the king; in the latter, the apostasy was against GOD.

Four great deliverances in (I & II) Chronicles and in each case victory was by GOD's hand.

David had many valuable friends (chapters 11, 12). They were described as "expert in war, with all instruments of war"; with "faces... like the faces of lions:" They were "as swift as the roes (deer) upon the mountains" and they could "use both the right hand and the left."

David was given the honor of preparing materials for the temple which was to be built by Solomon (chapter 22). He collected vast stores of gold, silver, and building materials. The estimate of the value is from two to five billions of dollars. David said concerning the temple, it "must be exceeding magnifical" {v. 5).

The great Davidic covenant (II Samuel 7) was reiterated in I Chronicles 17:7-15. This is one of GOD's unconditional agreements with Israel. (See also Psalm 89:20-37.)

The ark of His covenant had been in Kirjath-jearim for 20 years (I Samuel 7:2); then in the house of Obed-edom for three months. Now in grand triumphal procession, David brought it to a tent prepared for it in Jerusalem (chapter 15).

6. INTERESTING FEATURES:

Uzza's death came as a result of doing the right thing, in the wrong way (13:9, 10).

David refused to give an offering to the LORD which had cost him nothing (21:22-26).

7. KEY TO UNDERSTANDING:

Repetition means emphasis. What GOD has restated in Chronicles should be noted carefully.

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Daily Devotional for Tuesday August 2nd/05

"Fear not to go down into Egypt; for I will there make of thee a great nation: I will go down with thee into Egypt; and I will also surely bring thee up again." --Genesis 46:3,4

Jacob must have shuddered at the thought of leaving the land of his father's sojourning, and dwelling among heathen strangers. It was a new scene, and likely to be a trying one: who shall venture among couriers of a foreign monarch without anxiety? Yet the way was evidently appointed for him, and therefore he resolved to go. This is frequently the position of believers now -- they are called to perils and temptations altogether untried: at such seasons let them imitate Jacob's example by offering sacrifices of prayer unto God, and seeking His direction; let them not take a step until they have waited upon the Lord for His blessing: then they will have Jacob's companion to be their friend and helper. How blessed to feel assured that the Lord is with us in all our ways, and condescends to go down into our humiliations and banishments with us! Even beyond the ocean our Father's love beams like the sun in its strength. We cannot hesitate to go where Jehovah promises His presence; even the valley of deathshade grows bright with the radiance of this assurance. Marching onwards with faith in their God, believers shall have Jacob's promise. They shall be brought up again, whether it be from the troubles of life or the chambers of death. Jacob's seed came out of Egypt in due time, and so shall all the faithful pass unscathed through the tribulation of life, and the terror of death. Let us exercise Jacob's confidence. "Fear not," is the Lord's command and His divine encouragement to those who at His bidding are launching upon new seas; the divine presence and preservation forbid so much as one unbelieving fear. Without our God we should fear to move; but when He bids us to, it would be dangerous to tarry. Reader, go forward, and fear not.

(Taken from Spurgeon's Morning And Evening devotional)

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Daily Devotional for Wednesday August 3rd/05

Lack Of Knowledge

Continue

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Daily Devotional for Thursday August 4th/05

Here are some illustrations on Faith from Knight's Master Book Of New Illustrations.

As Long As He Is Awake

A mother and her little four-year-old daughter were preparing to retire for the night. The child was afraid of the dark, and the mother, on this occasion alone with the child, felt fearful also. When the light was out, the child caught a glimpse of the moon outside the window. "Mother," she asked, "is the moon GOD's light?" "Yes," said the mother.

The next question was, "Will GOD put out His light and go to sleep?" The mother replied, "No, my child, GOD never goes to sleep." Then out of a simplicity of a child's faith, she said that which gave reassurance to the fearful mother, "Well, as long as GOD is awake, I am not afraid."

- Tom. M. Olson, in Sunday School Times

But GOD Never Removes His Sign

Next to an iced exhibit of prize winning fish in a sporting goods store in Seattle, was a box containing vacation pamphlets and a big sign - "Take One." So many persons took one that the pamphlets soon disappeared. Along came a woman. She unfolded a newspaper, took one of the big fish, and went home with her dinner problem solved. The proprietor took down the sign! That's how simple a matter faith is! The woman saw the splendid specimens of fish - and the invitation to "Take One." She believed the sign meant what it said - and said what it meant - for there was no literature in the box when she appeared on the scene. To use somewhat the same figure, alongside the fountain of the water of life can be seen a sign saying: "Whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely" (Revelation 22:17), All who believe GOD take the water of life and have their thirst slaked.

- Now

"JESUS Said He Would"

An evangelist was holding special meetings for boys and girls. One day after the children's meeting, little Helen came home, rushed into her father's study, threw her arms around his neck, and said, "Daddy, I am a Christian!"

"Well, Helen," said her father, "I am so glad to hear that. When did you become a Christian?"

"This afternoon," she said.

He asked her to tell him what had occurred.

"Oh," she said, "Mr. -, the evangelist, said that JESUS CHRIST was there in the room, and that if we would receive Him, He would come in and live in our lives and make us His own; that He would receive us."

"Well," he said, "go on; tell me what else happened."

"Why," she said, "I received Him as my SAVIOUR and JESUS took me in."

"Well, Helen," he said, "that is all very interesting, but how do you know that when you received JESUS as your SAVIOUR, He took you in?"

And he said he would never forget the look on the face of his little girl as she drew herself up, and said, "Why, Daddy, because He said He would!"

- Will H. Houghton, in The Living CHRIST

How Faith Came

Moody once said: "If all the time that I have spent praying for faith was put together it would be months. I thought that some day faith was going to come down and strike me like lightning. But faith did not come. One day I read in the tenth of Romans, 'So then faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the word of GOD.' I had closed my Bible, and prayed for 'faith.' I now opened my Bible and began to read GOD's Word, - and faith has been growing ever since."

- Triumphs of Faith

He Bears

Gypsy Smith in one of his sermons tells of being in South Wales and lodging in a house on a side of a lovely mountain in the Rhondda Valley. One morning he received a letter from a man who said he had heard Gypsy preach three months before. He had never had a day of peace since, for it had revealed to him his sinful double life, and, though he had abandoned it, he could not find peace. "Do you think there is hope, that GOD will have mercy on me?" Gypsy laid down the letter and watched the snowflakes dancing before his window until he imagined one paused midway in air and said to the mighty mountain opposite: "O mountain, I want a place to rest. If I fall, can you bear me!" and the mountain answered: "Little snowflake, I have my roots in GOD. Fall on me, and see." Then Gypsy penned this parable to the man, and later a letter came saying. "I am on the mountain, and the mountain bears." Can a mountain bear a snowflake? Venture on GOD. He made the snowflake and the mountain, and will make a new creature of you if you will trust Him.

- Sunday School Times

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Daily Devotional for Friday August 5th/05

The following is taken from Charles E. Cowman - Missionary Warrior. While there may be some aspects of his life and doctrine we might disagree with, there is still much that can be gleaned. If you are anything like me, you will be encouraged and exhorted to read about how the Lord works in the lives of His children, the lessons He teaches them, and the work He does through them.

If the HOLY SPIRIT dwells in us there will be a strange accordance with GOD's working in the world around us. There is a divine harmony between the SPIRIT and providence. There is a double presence of the LORD for the consecrated believer. He is present in the heart, and is mightily present in the events of life.

"How marvelously," wrote one, "GOD can fit things together and His purposes meet without a shade of variation.

"Look at that beautiful scene in the temple when the infant JESUS was brought in to be presented before the LORD. Just at the right moment old Simeon was there to receive Him by the intimation of the HOLY GHOST; and we read further still that, at the same instant, the aged Anna, also coming in, recognized her coming SAVIOUR and joined in the welcome testimony.

"Look at Peter and Cornelius. Just the moment Peter had been prepared for the commission, messengers were waiting at the door to take him to Joppa. GOD had it all arranged and He had but to carry out the plan.

"The Acts of the Apostles is the book of providences under the control of the HOLY GHOST. We see in that wonderful book how everything moves at the bidding of the ascended Christ and the HOLY SPIRIT.

"Look at Philip and the eunuch of Ethiopia. In the height of his work in Samaria the evangelist is called away by the voice of GOD to go down into the desert. Everything looked the other way. The work seems to require him there, and yet he obeys and leaves thousands of seeking souls and a whole city moved to its depth by the HOLY GHOST, to go down into a desert. So GOD sometimes calls us from the most useful position to what seems a waste of time. But GOD has stepped before him. This Ethiopian prince has been up to Jerusalem, seeking after the truth, and has not found the need of his heart. They meet on the way, but for a few moments, perhaps, or a passing hour; but in that hour an eternity has been decided for that man, and not for him alone, but, perhaps, for the whole nation to which he was to return with the strange and glorious tidings of salvation.

"Look at Paul's wondrous life. What a romance of providence, culminating in the marvelous voyage to Rome, which is a sort of picture in miniature of the whole church in her perilous journey through the seas of time. Everything tried to baffle and hinder, but through everything GOD led him, and used the very things that seemed to be against him for the furtherance of the Gospel, making all things work together for good to him and for glory to His own great name."

Everything is included in the plan of GOD. Not only all things in general, but everything in particular. The theologians love to call it the particular providence of GOD. That means His plan in reference to the minutest detail of human life, and the most significant things that happen.

In the beautifully written tract, "The GOD-planned life." are these lines, "Every child of GOD may find and enter into GOD's plan for his life," and along with the GOD-planned life is divine providence. It is interwoven with every page of the Holy Scriptures and every part of our Christian life. The GOD of the Bible is a Father and Friend, concerned in everything concerning us, touching with a hand of love and power all the ordinary affairs of life, and directing and governing the whole universe, from the minutest insect that floats in summer air to the mightiest star that rolls in immensity.

In the story of Eliezer and Rebekah, we have the finest illustration of GOD's particular providence. The servant goes forth to find a bride for Isaac, watching every indication of the will of GOD as he treads his unknown way; and as the maiden meets him at the well and every circumstance seems to point in the one direction, he recognizes the hand of divine guidance and utters that sentence which is the very embodiment of the whole philosophy of divine providence; "I being in the way, the Lord led me to the house of my master's brethren."

Still more wonderful is the story of Joseph. It begins with a vision of his future, and then with dramatic vividness everything is blotted out in the bitter trials and disappointments that blight the fair promise of his youth; but the hand of love leads unerringly through it all, and the day comes when every one of these sorrows is overruled for his good and he can say to his cruel brethren, "Ye thought evil against me, but GOD meant it unto good, to bring to pass, as it is this day, to save much people alive."

Charles Cowman's lifetime throughout was just one series of providences, and often when asked why he had chosen to become a missionary he would reply, "I did not choose. It was GOD's choice for me." How can a man "choose" a "calling"? If a man is called he does not choose. It is the One who calls who does the choosing. "Ye have not chosen ME, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit," says our LORD. Men act as though GOD threw down before them an assortment of plans from which they might choose what pleases them, even as the shopkeeper tosses out a dozen skeins of silk to a lady purchaser, from which she might select that which strikes her fancy. But this is not true. It is GOD's right to choose. It is simply ours to ascertain and obey. For next in its eternal moment to the salvation of a soul is the guidance of the life of a child of GOD.

And GOD claims both as His supreme prerogative.

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Daily Devotional for Saturday August 6th/05

This is the message I preached yesterday at the Gospel Mission.

When Life Doesn't Go As You Planned

Joseph was born the eleventh son of a family of twelve brothers and one sister. He was the oldest child of his father Jacob's (Israel) favourite wife, Rachel. His mother died giving birth to the youngest son in the family, Benjamin.

Genesis 37:2-4 These are the generations of Jacob. Joseph, being seventeen years old, was feeding the flock with his brethren; and the lad was with the sons of Bilhah, and with the sons of Zilpah, his father's wives: and Joseph brought unto his father their evil report. Now Israel loved Joseph more than all his children, because he was the son of his old age: and he made him a coat of many colours. And when his brethren saw that their father loved him more than all his brethren, they hated him, and could not speak peaceably unto him.

In the book of Genesis, we can see four major disappointments in Joseph's life - things that he did not plan on, but that had a major impact on his life and future plans.

1) Unexpected Affliction - Sold Into Slavery

The first was his brother's jealously, which motivated them to betray Joseph, when he was 17 years old, and sell him into slavery - something which was not in Joseph's plans at all, and affected him for years to come.

Genesis 37:23-24 And it came to pass, when Joseph was come unto his brethren, that they stript Joseph out of his coat, his coat of many colours that was on him; And they took him, and cast him into a pit: and the pit was empty, there was no water in it.

Genesis 37:28 Then there passed by Midianites merchantmen; and they drew and lifted up Joseph out of the pit, and sold Joseph to the Ishmeelites for twenty pieces of silver: and they brought Joseph into Egypt.

There are times in our lives where we may meet with an unexpected affliction, ranging anywhere from an accidental injury to severe illness or disease, from a lost job to a financial crisis.

What was Joseph's response during all this? He kept trusting in the Lord his God. He did not know why God allowed this trial to come into his life, but he chose to trust His Heavenly Father - as a result God blessed him in all he did.

2) Falsely Accused And Imprisoned

Genesis 39:1-4 And Joseph was brought down to Egypt; and Potiphar, an officer of Pharaoh, captain of the guard, an Egyptian, bought him of the hands of the Ishmeelites, which had brought him down thither. And the LORD was with Joseph, and he was a prosperous man; and he was in the house of his master the Egyptian. And his master saw that the LORD was with him, and that the LORD made all that he did to prosper in his hand. And Joseph found grace in his sight, and he served him: and he made him overseer over his house, and all that he had he put into his hand.

When Potiphar saw how the Lord blessed the work of Joseph's hands, he was made overseer over Potiphar's house. Until Potiphar's wife set her eyes upon him, and laid in wait for him. Because she did not get her desire fulfilled, she turned on Joseph and lied about his actions to Potiphar.

Genesis 39:20-23 And Joseph's master took him, and put him into the prison, a place where the king's prisoners were bound: and he was there in the prison. But the LORD was with Joseph, and shewed him mercy, and gave him favour in the sight of the keeper of the prison. And the keeper of the prison committed to Joseph's hand all the prisoners that were in the prison; and whatsoever they did there, he was the doer of it. The keeper of the prison looked not to any thing that was under his hand; because the LORD was with him, and that which he did, the LORD made it to prosper.

In times of ill treatment by others, we have the example of Joseph choosing to be faithful to the Lord no matter what - even if it caused him further affliction! He refused Potiphar's wife's advances and fled from her. See verses 7-9.

Though tried in prison and bound in fetters (see Psalm 105:18-19), he was later exalted by the keeper of the prison. All through this period, we again see that the Lord blessed Joseph and was with him.

3) Dashed Hopes And Expectations

Over time, Pharaoh's butler and baker were imprisoned and had dreams which saddened them. The Lord gave Joseph wisdom to interpret these dreams - and they were fulfilled as declared by Joseph. The chief butler was to be restored to his place, and therefore Joseph petitioned him as follows:

Genesis 40:14-15 But think on me when it shall be well with thee, and shew kindness, I pray thee, unto me, and make mention of me unto Pharaoh, and bring me out of this house: For indeed I was stolen away out of the land of the Hebrews: and here also have I done nothing that they should put me into the dungeon.

Joseph was now 28 years old. After 11 years of being sold into slavery and his time of imprisonment, it now looked like he might be set free. After getting his hopes up, rejoicing in his possible freedom, anticipating his release, we read this sad report:

Genesis 40:23 Yet did not the chief butler remember Joseph, but forgat him.

When our plans don't come to pass - what do we do? Joseph kept his trust in the Lord and still remained faithful. Eventually two more years passed, and then Pharaoh had two dreams which greatly troubled him. He called the wise men, but none could interpret his dream, until the butler remembered Joseph. As the course of events unfolded, Joseph interpreted Pharaoh's dreams, gave God the glory, and praised and thanked the Lord, and was exalted to a place of honour at 30 years old - after 13 years of slavery.

Genesis 41:38-44 And Pharaoh said unto his servants, Can we find such a one as this is, a man in whom the Spirit of God is? And Pharaoh said unto Joseph, Forasmuch as God hath shewed thee all this, there is none so discreet and wise as thou art: Thou shalt be over my house, and according unto thy word shall all my people be ruled: only in the throne will I be greater than thou. And Pharaoh said unto Joseph, See, I have set thee over all the land of Egypt. And Pharaoh took off his ring from his hand, and put it upon Joseph's hand, and arrayed him in vestures of fine linen, and put a gold chain about his neck; And he made him to ride in the second chariot which he had; and they cried before him, Bow the knee: and he made him ruler over all the land of Egypt. And Pharaoh said unto Joseph, I am Pharaoh, and without thee shall no man lift up his hand or foot in all the land of Egypt.

There was a final point I want to mention regarding the things in Joseph's life that he did not plan:

4) Separation From His Family

This was not something that he had ever intended or planned upon - he never dreamed that it would be 22 years before he would see his brethren (and a little later, his father) again. Though, no doubt, this disappointment greatly affected him during those years of slavery, imprisonment, and was even remembered during his years of being exalted as second in command over all of Egypt. See Genesis 41:51-52.

Though all those years of Joseph's life did not go as he planned, God worked behind the scenes to set things in motion to protect the tribe of Israel by sending Joseph into Egypt ahead of them, to prepare the way - though Joseph did not see or know God's plan at that time. The Lord worked it out that Joseph would see his whole family again.

Psalms 105:16-17 Moreover he called for a famine upon the land: he brake the whole staff of bread. He sent a man before them, even Joseph, who was sold for a servant:

17 years later (see Genesis 47:9 and 28), when Jacob/Israel died, Joseph's brethren began worrying about whether Joseph would now take vengeance upon them for their betrayal (39 years before - Joseph is now 56 years old). But Joseph did not let his years of hardship make him bitter - he let them make him better! Disappointments are His appointments, as Joseph goes on to relate:

Genesis 50:19-21 And Joseph said unto them, Fear not: for am I in the place of God? But as for you, ye thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good, to bring to pass, as it is this day, to save much people alive. Now therefore fear ye not: I will nourish you, and your little ones. And he comforted them, and spake kindly unto them.

During this reminder (by his brethren) of his previous afflictions, Joseph testified to his brethren of the Lord's goodness and love in his life.

Even though Joseph's life did not go as he planned, Joseph learned that they went as He planned. His Heavenly Father was in control all the while, working out His perfect will and plan in Joseph's life - as He does in the lives of all His children! The New Testament parallel of Genesis 50:20 is Romans 8:28.

Romans 8:28 And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.

Philippians 1:6 Being confident of this very thing, that He which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ.

The Answers Why

I asked the Lord one day why there were so many mountains in my life,
So much grief and heartache, so much trouble and strife?
I read His Word very carefully, looking for the answers why,
And deep within my soul, I heard His Spirit reply.

I am working all things out for your good;
Removing the debris that shouldn't be there.
There is so much damage that sin has done,
There is so much I need to repair.
There are works that I am doing - if you could only understand -
I am fulfilling all My promises according to My Plan.

The mountains are for reminding you of My goodness and My love,
The weakness is to cause you to lean upon My arms above.
Rest upon My provision, and trust that I will guide you along Life's way,
And rejoice in My grace and mercy that will lead you safely Home one day.

There's a work I am doing inside your very heart,
So one day up in glory, My likeness to you I will impart;
So don't fret about the things that you don't understand,
Just trust my eternal wisdom, and know it's all according to My Plan.

Poem written December 20th, 2002
Devotion written August 5th/05
Jerry Bouey

"GOD MEANT IT UNTO GOOD"

"God meant it unto good"--O blest assurance,
Falling like sunshine all across life's way,
Touching with Heaven's gold earth's darkest storm clouds,
Bringing fresh peace and comfort day by day.

'Twas not by chance the hands of faithless brethren
Sold Joseph captive to a foreign land;
Nor was it chance which, after years of suffering,
Brought him before the monarch's throne to stand.

One Eye all-seeing saw the need of thousands,
And planned to meet it through that one lone soul;
And through the weary days of prison bondage
Was working towards the great and glorious goal.

As yet the end was hidden from the captive,
The iron entered even to his soul;
His eye could scan the present path of sorrow,
Not yet his gaze might rest upon the whole.

Faith failed not through those long, dark days of waiting,
His trust in God was recompensed at last,
The moment came when God led forth His servant
To succour many, all his sufferings past.

"It was not you but God, that sent me hither,"
Witnessed triumphant faith in after days;
"God meant it unto good," no "second causes"
Mingled their discord with his song of praise.

"God means it unto good" for thee, beloved,
The God of Joseph is the same today;
His love permits afflictions strange and bitter,
His hand is guiding through the unknown way.

Thy Lord, who sees the end from the beginning,
Hath purposes for thee of love untold.
Then place thy hand in His and follow fearless,
Till thou the riches of His grace behold.

There, when thou standest in the Home of Glory,
And all life's path lies open to thy gaze,
Thine eyes shall see the hand which now thou trustest,
And magnify His love through endless days.

--Freda Hanbury Allen

(Taken from Streams In The Desert devotional)

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Daily Devotional for Sunday August 7th/05

I have a treat for you today: two short sermons by one of my all-time favourite authors, Walter L. Wilson, a medical Doctor who became a great soulwinner.

The first message is a soulwinning message based on Hebrews 1:3, entitled "By Himself."

Hebrews 1:3 Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high;

The second message is a thought-provoking one based on Romans 12:1. Whose Body Is Yours?

Romans 12:1 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.

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Daily Devotional for Monday August 8th/05

The following quotes were gleaned from Charles E. Cowman: Missionary Warrior.

When Henry Martyn, that splendid young hero of the Cross, lay dying with a fever in Persia, he received a letter asking how the missionary interest of the church at home could be increased. The dying saint said, "Tell them to live more with Christ, to catch more of His Spirit; for the Spirit of Christ is the Spirit of Missions, and the nearer we get to Him, the more intensely missionary we become."


These lines were found penned on a blank leaf in Charles Cowman's Bible:

"God is looking for a man, or woman, whose heart will be always set on Him, and who will trust Him for all He desires to do. God is eager to work more mightily now than He ever has through any soul. The clock of the centuries points to the eleventh hour.

"The world is waiting yet to see what God can do through a consecrated soul. Not the world alone, but God Himself is waiting for one, who will be more fully devoted to Him than any who have ever lived; who will be willing to be nothing that Christ may be all; who will grasp God's own purposes; and taking His humility and His faith, His love and His power, will, without hindering, continue to let God do exploits.

"There is no limit to what God can do with a man, providing he does not touch the glory."


Note: If my memory serves me correctly, these are the very words that inspired D.L. Moody to be that man that God could use.


The next part of today's devotion is something many of you may have read, but it truly does show how fickle we can be at times! ;)

The Preacher

If he is young, he lacks experience; if his hair is gray, he is too old.

If he has five or six children, he has too many; if he has none, he is not setting a good example.

If his wife sings in the choir, she is forward; if she does not, she is not interested in her husband's work and is probably backslidden.

If he speaks from notes, he has canned sermons and is a bore; if extemporaneously, he is not deep enough.

If he suggests changes for improvement of the church, he is a dictator; if he makes no suggestions, he is a figurehead.

If he makes use of illustrations, he does not give enough Bible' if not, his teaching is not clearly understood.

If he fails to please somebody, he is hurting the church; if he tries to please everybody, he is a fool.

If he preaches the truth, he is insulting and meddling; if he does not preach it, he is a hypocrite.

If he preaches an hour, he is tiresome; if only twenty minutes, he is lazy.

He must have the wisdom of the owl
courage of the eagle
enterprise of the jay
disposition of the dove
and eat what keeps a canary.

He must be an economist, politician, fund-raiser, marital adviser, father confessor, disciplinarian, taxi-driver, preacher and pastor.

He must visit all the sick, and everybody else, teach a Sunday school class, direct the Y.P. and deliver sermons that are fit for publication.

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Daily Devotional for Tuesday August 9th/05

The following is taken from a four-part series on The Tabernacle by Pastor Perry Rockwood.

THE BREASTPLATE

The breastplate was connected with the ephod and was a vital part of it. We read concerning this in Exodus 28:15-30: "And thou shalt make the breastplate of judgment with cunning work; after the work of the ephod thou shalt make it; of gold, of blue, and of purple, and of scarlet, and of fine twined linen, shalt thou make it. Foursquare it shall be being doubled; a span shall be the breadth thereof. And thou shalt set in it settings of stones even four rows of stones: the first row shall be a sardius, a topaz, and a carbuncle: this shall be the first row. And the second row shall be an emerald, a sapphire, and a diamond. And the third row a ligure, an agate, and amethyst. And the fourth row a beryl, and an onyx, and a jasper: they shall be with the names of the children of Israel, twelve, according to their names, like the engravings of a signet; every one with his name shall they be according to the twelve tribes ... And they shall bind the breastplate by the rings thereof unto the rings of the ephod with a lace of blue, that it may be above the curious girdle of the ephod, and that the breastplate be not loosed from the ephod. And Aaron shall bear the names of the children of Israel in the breastplate of judgment upon his heart, when he goeth in unto the holy place, for a memorial before the Lord continually. And thou shalt put in the breastplate of judgment the Urim and the Thummin; and they shall be upon Aaron's heart, when he goeth in before the Lord: and Aaron shall bear the judgment of the children of Israel upon his heart before the Lord continually."

Let us notice that the ephod, the shoulder-pieces, the breastplate and the curious girdle were all fastened together to make one garment. Now this garment carried the names of the children of Israel so that they rested both on the shoulder and on the heart of the high priest.

This pictures a very precious truth from God's Word. The names of the children of Israel on the shoulder were placed there according to their birth as we read in Exodus 28:10: "Six of their names on one stone, and the other six names of the rest on the other stone, ACCORDING TO THEIR BIRTH."

The names on the breastplate were according to the position the children of Israel held in the camp or on the march.

The jewels on the shoulder were all alike. They had each the same value. This of course pictures us as believers all alike for we are all the children of God: "For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus" (Galatians 3:26).

God describes us as jewels: "And they shall be mine, saith the Lord of hosts, in that day when I make up MY JEWELS" (Malachi 3:17). Yes, we are jewels bought with a great price (1 Corinthians 6:20). We are Christ's purchased possession.

Now the jewels on Aaron's heart were not alike. While we as believers are all on his heart we are certainly not alike. Some of Aaron's jewels were nearer his heart than others. They were in different positions according to their position of service.

So it is with believers. While Christ was here upon the earth He first chose seventy, then He chose twelve, and out of these twelve there were three more intimate with Him, and from these three there was one who was referred to as "THAT DISCIPLE WHOM JESUS LOVED." John was his name and he is called "THE BELOVED DISCIPLE." He was found leaning on Jesus' breast.

It is possible to be a believer and to walk afar off and it is possible to lean on Jesus' breast by close, obedient fellowship with Him.

The Bible makes it clear that every believer's life is built upon the foundation Christ Jesus: "For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ" (1 Corinthians 3:11). But every believer has the choice within himself to build a life which is pleasing unto the Lord or a life which is not pleasing to Him: "Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble, Every man's work shall be manifest (openly declared); for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man's work of what sort it is. If any man's work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward. If any man's work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire." (1 Corinthians 3:12-15).

We all recognise that works have no part in our salvation for we are saved only by the Cross-work of Christ. But while eternal life is God's gift by faith, the same God promises rewards to believers based on works done after faith. Our works as believers determine our relative rank, place and reward before the Lord.

Jesus says in Revelation 22:12: "And behold, I come quickly, and MY REWARD is with me, to give every man (disciple) according as HIS WORK shall be." God gives unmerited salvation, but He never gives unmerited rewards. "The Lord ... will bring to light the hidden things of darkness, and will make manifest the COUNSELS OF THE HEARTS: and THEN shall every man have PRAISE of God" (1 Corinthians 4:5).

Moses lived in the light of this truth. He forsook all the pleasures of Egypt and all the pomp and splendour of the palace and accounted "The reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures of Egypt: FOR HE HAD RESPECT UNTO THE RECOMPENSE OF THE REWARD" (Hebrews 11:26). True faith realises that peace of conscience is better than a big bank-balance and communion with God is preferred above the favours of the courts of this world. We lose nothing whatever when we lose all for Christ.

I wonder today how many of us are living with eternity's values in view. Do you think God is going to reward you in that day for building up big bank accounts with so little real sacrifice for Him and His glorious work? Do you think it will be glory for you in that day when you did not even tithe your money and robbed God of that which belonged to Him?

Are you going to sing "O that will be glory for me" when you are doing so little to win precious souls unto Himself? Are you going to sing, 'O Lord Jesus, how Long? How long ere we shout the glad song?' when you must given an account of your life as a believer, knowing how much you lived for self and for this world and how seldom for Christ?

Certainly there are crowns for every believer but every believer cannot lay claim to them. In 1 Corinthians 9:24, 25 we have the crown of incorruption, but can we be crowned who failed in the running? "Even so run, that YE MAY OBTAIN." In 1 Thessalonians 2:19 we have the crown of rejoicing, but can we obtain this crown for turning many to righteousness (Daniel 12:3) if we have not turned one? In 1 Peter 5:1-4 we have the crown of glory for tending the flock of God, but can we receive this for shepherding the flock of God if we did not do it? In 2 Timothy 4:7, 8 we have the crown of righteousness for all who loved His appearing, but how many believers are truly watching for His return? In James 1:12 we have the crown of life, but can we receive this crown for enduring temptation if we succumbed to it?

When King Charles was to be crowned in 1881 upon Roumania becoming a kingdom there was no crown available. He said: "Send to the arsenal, and melt an iron crown out of the captured cannon, in token that it was won upon the field of battle, and bought and paid for with our lives." If we, beloved, are to receive Christ's crowns in that day we must win them now by sacrificing our all for His glory in the light of the recompense of reward.

Perry Rockwood
The People's Gospel Hour

The Tabernacle - Part One

The Tabernacle - Part Two

The Tabernacle - Part Three

The Tabernacle - Part Four

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Daily Devotional for Wednesday August 10th/05

This is taken from part two of The Tabernacle by Perry Rockwood. See yesterday's post for links to all four studies. I have also added several observations after Brother Rockwood's section.

THE BRAZEN LAVER

We saw in our last message that the Brazen Altar pictured the sacrifice of Christ on Calvary's Cross. It speaks of the sinner's deliverance from the guilt of sin. Today we consider the Laver. It pictures for us the believer's need for daily cleansing from the defilement of sin. The Altar is for justification and the Laver is for cleansing. The Altar was for sinners while the Laver was for priests.

Let us read Exodus 30:17-21: "And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying, Thou shalt also make a laver of brass, and his foot also of brass, to wash withal: and thou shalt put it between the tabernacle of the congregation and the altar, and thou shalt put water therein. For Aaron and his sons shall wash their hands and their feet thereat: When they go into the tabernacle of the congregation, they shall wash with water, that they die not; or when they come near to the altar to minister, to burn offering made by fire unto the Lord: So they shall wash their hands and their feet, that they die not: and it shall be a statute for ever to them, even to him and his seed throughout their generations."

Let us notice that the brass for this laver was obtained from the mirrors of the women as recorded in Exodus 38:8: "And he made the laver of brass, and the foot of it of brass, of the looking–glasses of the women assembling, which assembled at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation."

These mirrors speak to us of the pride of life. Pride of course is sin. It was because of pride that Satan was cast out of heaven (Isaiah 14:12-17). Pride caused our first parents to disobey and it was through this disobedience that sin entered into the world (Genesis 3:1-8 cf. Romans 5:19).

Here then, is the picture. The women had to part with their pride before the laver could be made. The laver pictures for us the new man in Christ Jesus who is not only saved through Christ's blood on Calvary's Cross, but who also separates himself from the old life unto the Lord. The new man in Christ must do away with habits and sins of the old life.

Of course, I hear many people say today: "Well I don't like negative preaching. The first answer is they don't have to worry for they will not hear too much. The average person wants someone to tickle their ears and most of the time they are not disappointed. "For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears" (2 Tim. 4:3).

The second answer to those who do not like negative preaching is that they do not like Bible preaching. The Bible is negative before it is positive. For example in Colossians 3:8-9: "And now ye also PUT OFF all these; anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy communication out of your mouth. Lie not one to another, seeing that ye have put off the old man with his deeds." Here we have the negative, the putting off. It is impossible to put on until we have put off.

Then in Colossians 3:10 we read of putting on: "And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him." Here we have the negative and then the positive. If we are going to be Bible preachers we must preach both.

It is wonderful to be saved from Hell, but we cannot stop there. We must go to the laver and there be cleansed of the old deeds which is the negative and put on the new man which is the positive.

The laver stands for the Word of God. In James 1:23, 24 we read: "If any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass: For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway, forgetteth what manner of man he was."

Notice James speaks of "his natural face," that is, the face he was born with. (Many ladies look in the mirror and they certainly don't see the face they were born with.) But God compares this mirror with the Bible and He wants us to see ourselves as we are, not just outwardly but also inwardly.

Before the priest offered any offering, or entered into the tabernacle proper, he was to wash his hands and his feet at the laver. The laver and the foot of the laver was made of brass. The foot was polished so that the priest could see his dirty feet as well as his hands and then he could wash away the dirt in the laver.

This is exactly what the Bible does. In Ephesians 5:26 we read: "That He might sanctify and cleanse it (the church) with the washing of water by the word." In Psalm 119:9 we read: "Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? by taking heed thereto according to thy word."

If we are going to be growing believers in the Lord, we must go often to the laver for cleansing. The old life cannot satisfy nor remain if our lives are to count for Him. In this season of the year we see old leaves falling from the trees as the new life creeps up into the branches after a winter's sleep. The new buds, pregnant with life, are shooting forth and there is no room for the old.

So it ought to be with the Christian life. We should be willing to part with the old so that the new abundant life in Christ might shine forth for His glory.

I cannot give it up,
The little world I know,
The innocent delights of youth,
The things I cherish so.
'Tis true I love my Lord,
And want to do His will,
But oh, I may enjoy the world,
And be a Christian still!

And yet outside the camp,
'Twas there my Saviour died.
It was the world that cast Him out,
And saw Him crucified.
Can I take part with those
Who nailed Him to the Tree?
And where His name is never praised,
Is there the place for me?

Farewell! Henceforth my place
Is with the Lamb Who died.
My sovereign, while I have Thy love,
What should I want beside?
Thyself dear Lord art now
My free and loving choice.
In whom, though now I see Thee not,
Believing, I rejoice.

Shame on me that I sought
Another joy than this,
Or dreamt a heart at rest with Thee
Could crave for earthy bliss.
These vain and worthless things
I put them all aside.
Thy goodness fills my longing soul,
And I am satisfied.

It is interesting to notice that there are no dimensions given for the laver. The exact size for the other furnishings was given to Moses but not so with the Laver. This suggests to us the universal application of the Word of God to meet the need of every life. There is an unlimited supply of God's grace for every believer. We think of Peter who said: "Shall I forgive my brother seven times?" The Lord answered: "Not seven, but seventy times seven times."

There is a story told of a poor woman, living in the slums of a great city, who made her first trip to the seashore. As she stood there and looked out over the vast ocean, tears gathered in her eyes and trickled down her face. Someone asked her why she was crying. "Oh, it is so wonderful," she said, "to see something that there is enough of."

So it is with God's grace. It is like the ocean in its boundless supply, sufficient for every need.


My Comments On The Brazen Laver:

I find it interesting to note that the looking glasses of the women were made of of brass. It was this material that was made into the brass lavers, that the priests were to wash in daily. Brass is always symbolic of judgement in the Word of God, especially in relation to the tabernacle furniture and furnishings.

I believe this signifies that as we look into the Word of God - as James teaches - and see ourself revealed or reflected therein, we are to then judge the sin in our lives and allow the water of the Word to clean us up.

Here is a passage dealing specifically with judging ourselves (ie. any sin that may be in our lives) before we partake of the Lord's Supper - though the principle is there of judging the sin in our lives and cleaning it up - just as the looking glass and the bronze laver signified.

1 Corinthians 11:27-29 Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord. But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup. For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord's body.

1 Corinthians 11:31-32 For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged. But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world.

Let us examine ourselves, see the dirt in our lives that is revealed from the mirror of God's Word, heed and apply the correction that is so needed, and let God's Holy Spirit cleanse our hearts and lives through the laver of the water of God's Word.

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Daily Devotional for Thursday August 11th/05

Today and tomorrow I am sending out two short studies from Sermon Seeds from the Psalms by William G. Heslop. These are great devotional studies that give an overview of each Psalm that is informative and Christ-centred.

Psalm 22

The 22nd Psalm presents a graphic picture of the Crucifixion of CHRIST. When it is remembered that crucifixion was not a Jewish but a Roman form of punishment and that the Empire of Rome was not even in existence until a thousand years after the days of David, the proof of divine inspiration is beyond question.

1. The agonizing cry of CHRIST upon the Cross. "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?"

2. The terrific testings and temptations upon the Cross. "0 my God, I cry in the daytime, but thou hearest not; and in the night season, and am not silent."

3. The divine reason for the Cross. "Thou art holy."

4. The contumely and disgrace. "Our fathers trusted . . . and thou didst deliver them . . . but I am a worm . . . a reproach. . . . and despised."

5. The scorning and sneering mob. "All they that see me laugh me to scorn: they shoot out the lip, they shake the head."

6. The wicked words of the watchers. "He trusted on the LORD . . . let him deliver him."

7. The cruelties of the crowd. "Many bulls have compassed me: strong bulls of Bashan have beset me around. They gaped upon me . . . as a ravening and a roaring lion."

8. The profuse perspiration caused by intense pain. "I am poured out like water."

9. The suspension from the Cross, causing disjointed bones. "All my bones are out of joint."

10. The fluttering and failure of the heart. "My heart is like wax; it is melted in the midst of my bowels."

11. Extreme exhaustion. "My strength is dried up like a potsherd."

12. The awful thirst. "My tongue cleaveth to my jaws."

13. The slow approach of death. "Thou hast brought me into the dust of death."

14. The piercing of the hands and feet. "They pierced my hands and my feet."

15. The nudeness, indignities and shame. "I may tell all my bones: they look and stare."

16. The gambling for the garments. "They part my garments among them, and cast lots upon my vesture."

17. The darling of GOD in the hands of the Devil. "0 my strength... Deliver . . . my darling from the power of the dog. Save me from the lion's mouth."

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Daily Devotional for Friday August 12th/05

The following study is taken from Sermon Seeds from the Psalms by William G. Heslop.

Psalm 23

This boundless, immeasurable, and unlimited Song of the Shepherd has breathed solace into the souls of saints for thirty centuries.

In this priceless pearl of the sacred Scriptures there is bound up enough comfort, encouragement, and consolation to meet the needs of the people of GOD in every age and everywhere. It unveils GOD's care and concern for all the converted and cleansed sons of toil.

For spirit, soul, and body, in time and in eternity, here and hereafter, every need has been anticipated and suitable provision made:

(1) The physical man. "I shall not want. . . . he maketh me to lie down."

(2) The spiritual man. "He restoreth my soul. He leadeth me."

(3) The present. "Goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life."

(4) The future. "I shall dwell in the house the LORD for ever."

(5) The emergencies and uncertainties of life. "Yea though I walk through the valley. . . I will fear no evil." "Thy rod and thy staff they comfort me."

(6) Full sanctification and satisfaction for the whole man. "He leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake." "Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies."

All this, of course points to CHRIST, the Shepherd.

- The blessed man of Psalm 1,
- the King of Psalm 2,
- the falsely accused of Psalm 3,
- the righteous of Psalm 5,
- the groaning one of Psalm 6,
- the son of man of Psalm 8,
- the LORD in Psalm 10,
- the distressed one in Psalm 18,
- the suffering one of Psalm 22,
- the Shepherd of Psalm 23,

look beyond David, beyond man, and beyond the children of men, to our LORD and SAVIOUR, Judge and King, JESUS CHRIST.

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Daily Devotional for Saturday August 13th/05

The following quote is taken from chapter One of The Epistle Of James: "The Application Of Faith To The Issues Of Life". It is a commentary written by Doug Sehorne. I have just recently got permission to post it (and two other commentaries by him) on our study site.

Many people don't like reading commentaries, unless they are researching a particular verse or passage - but I have found some that are more easy to read than others (and are actually enjoyable!), ones you can just sit with your Bible next to you and dig in. They are meaty enough to glean and gather much from, but not technical or dry - among them would be those written by Oliver B. Green, Matthew Henry, John R. Rice, J. Vernon McGee, and the ones by Brother Sehorne.

All the material in this commentary on James was first preached to a church Brother Sehorne pastored for years, so that will explain the repetitions used to emphasize certain points (repetition that you would not normally come across in material that was primarily written, rather than preached). Brother Sehorne has mailed me out a CD containing his commentaries in a format that I can copy/paste from - so when I receive that I can put the rest of the chapters up quickly; however, until then it might be slow going typing them up. I truly do think you will be blessed by this commentary, and it might even answer some questions you had on various passages from the book of James.

II. FAITH AND TRIALS

A. A Right Understanding

In verse 2 James says to "count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations." That is exactly the opposite of what our flesh wants to do! Our flesh wants to complain. Our flesh wants to criticize. Our flesh wants to say, 'What did I do to deserve this?' Our flesh will say, 'If God really loved you, this wouldn't have happened!' So you're going to really have to learn to divide the flesh from the spirit. You're going to have to recognize what are fleshly thoughts and what are spiritual thoughts.

Trials are not what they seem to be. He said, "count it all joy." Then in verse 3 he said, "knowing this." He was saying that there are some things that you must know if you are going to have the right perspective concerning the trials of life. He was saying that there is something more to trials than what appears on the surface. Do not trust your heart or your carnal reasoning. You've got to "count" some things. You've got to consider some things. You've got to know some things. You really have to have supernatural light and understanding to look at the trials of life God's way. The natural man does not understand the things of God. The natural man does not understand how God can take tragedies and turn them into triumphs. The natural man does not understand how God can take problems and use them to purge and purify His people. But the spiritual mind can understand these things.

Notice in verse 2, the word "count". That word carried the idea of 'thinking ahead'. It means to have a proper understanding of something before it happens and to rely upon it, to count on it. It means to use your head. "Count it all joy"! Think differently than you normally would!

Here is the problem. Most of the time, instead of acting, we react! There is a difference between the times when you act and when you react. If you just react, you usually do the wrong thing! If you count and think ahead, you will not react, but you will have a definite plan of action as to how you are going to behave when something goes wrong. Instead of reacting to a situation or a word or a problem, you will act because you have considered and meditated and understood and know some things beforehand. "Count it all joy"! You'll have to think ahead in order to find joy in the midst of trials! When the trials come, it is just about too late to think then. The natural thing is to think with your heart and to respond by how you feel, instead of thinking with your head and responding by what you know.

That word in verse 3, "know, has to do with our minds and not our hearts. It has to do with our intellect and reasoning, not with our emotions. Our problem is that we respond and react on what we feel instead of what we know. Don't react, but act!

Ignorance is the cause of grief and sorrow in trials. When we do not know or believe the promises of His Word we will fail. And when we have not given thought ahead of time, we will fail in the trials of life. Ignorance of God's Word and God's ways will lead you to grief and sorrow and discouragement in the testings of faith.

B. A Rejoicing Spirit

James tells us to "count it all joy". That word "all" is the word which means complete, pure or unmixed. I do not think that James is saying that we are to rejoice everytime something bad happens. He is not saying that you shout 'Hallelujah' because your child is sick! We need to find out what this joy is and what patience is. He says that you "count" it joy, knowing that is is going to work patience for you. He is not saying that we are to rejoice everytime something bad happens. We are not to rejoice in the fact that it happened. It says of our Lord in Hebrews chapter 12 that He endured the cross, despising the shame for the joy that was set before Him. He stayed on the cross because He thought ahead and He knew what the end was going to be. Also in Hebrews 12 it says, "no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous." Trials are grievous and they do bring tears and sorrow, but you can still have joy and peace in your heart. You won't fall apart when the trials come, because you have thought ahead and you know what God is doing in your life. You know that He is doing something beneficial, even if you don't know exactly what it is. No matter what He is doing, the end of it will always be patience.

We are not to rejoice in the fact of the trials or because they happened and we are not necessarily to enjoy the trials. We are to rejoice because we know the end result of the trials. During the time that you are going through problems and heartaches it is not pleasant, but the thing that will keep you going is this: "I shall come forth as gold." That will take some more meditation and faith. You've got to believe that your coming forth as gold is more important than enjoying the present situation. You've got to believe that your spiritual character is more important than the comforts of life, because it says that God is going to use "divers temptations".

Let's go back to this word "patience". Notice that the key words are "knowing this". He is saying that you have to know some things to arrive at a right understanding. You have to know some things to have a rejoicing spirit. If you don't know these things then you are not going to be able to rejoice in trials. Our rejoicing is based on something we "know". In Hebrews 12, he says not to forget the exhortation that sayeth, "For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth." Paul was saying that we need to think and remember that the Lord loves us. Don't react! Think and then act according to a pre-determined plan. Don't react on your emotions. Act on a decision. Act on a pre-meditated plan of action.

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Daily Devotional for Sunday August 14th/05

I have two good, though short, messages for you. One by the evangelistic Doctor Wilson and the other by Harry Ironside.

Five Aspects of Faith - by Walter L. Wilson

What Is The Gospel? - by Harry Ironside

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Daily Devotional for Monday August 15th/05

It Is Sufficient

"IS" (2 Cor. 12:9).

It had pleased God to remove my youngest child under circumstances of peculiar trial and pain; and as I had just laid my little one's body in the churchyard, on return home, I felt it my duty to preach to my people on the meaning of trial.

Finding that this text was in the lesson for the following Sabbath, I chose it as my Master's message to them and myself; but on trying to prepare the notes, I found that in honesty I could not say that the words were true; and therefore I knelt down and asked God to let His grace be sufficient for me. While I was thus pleading, I opened my eyes and saw a framed illuminated text, which my mother had given me only a few days before, and which I had told my servant to place upon the wall during my absence at the holiday resort where my little one was taken away from us.

I did not notice the words on returning to my house; but as I looked up and wiped my eyes, the words met my gaze, "My grace is sufficient for thee."

The "is" was picked out in bright green while the "My" and the "thee" were painted in another color.

In one moment the message came straight to my soul, as a rebuke for offering such a prayer as, "Lord, let Thy grace be sufficient for me"; for the answer was almost as an audible voice, "How dare you ask that which is?" God cannot make it any more sufficient than He has made it; get up and believe it, and you will find it true, because the Lord says it in the simplest way: "My grace is (not shall be or may be) sufficient for thee."

"My," "is," and "thee" were from that moment, I hope, indelibly fixed upon my heart; and I (thank God) have been trying to live in the reality of the message from that day forward to the present time.

The lesson that came to me, and which I seek to convey to others, is, Never turn God's facts into hopes, or prayers, but simply use them as realities, and you will find them powerful as you believe them. --Prebendary H. W. Webb Peploe

He giveth more grace when the burdens grow greater,
He sendeth more strength when the labors increase;
To added affliction He addeth His mercies,
To multiplied trials His multiplied peace.

When we have exhausted our store of endurance,
When our strength has failed ere the day is half done,
When we reach the end of our hoarded resources
Our Father's full giving is only begun.

His love has no limit, His grace has no measure,
His power no boundary known unto men;
For out of His infinite riches in Jesus
He giveth and giveth and giveth again.

--Annie Johnson Flint

(Taken from Streams In The Desert devotional)

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Daily Devotional for Tuesday August 16th/05

It is true that "There is nothing too great for God's power"; and it is just as true that "There is nothing too small for His love!"

I love the statement quoted above - it is truly fitting in light of what I believe the Lord wants me to preach on this Friday:

What God Cannot Do

When I think of this theme I am reminded of a question posed to me as a young believer. Often when witnessing to unbelievers, the atheists and the scoffers will try to come up with questions to try to stump the Christian - thinking in some sense that if the young believer cannot answer the foolish question then they are somehow justified in their rebellious course.

I was asked if there was anything that God cannot do? Of course, I protested that there wasn't. Then the mocker asked me, "Can God create a rock so heavy that He cannot move it?" Not sure how to answer that - as it seemed a catch-22 question. Either way I answered seemed to prove God was limited.

I have since matured in my faith and now realize how foolish are these reasonings of the mockers and scoffers of God and His Word! God is a Spirit - as such He is not hindered by our physical limitations. When the Lord Jesus Christ, the second Person of the Godhead (Trinity), became a man to one day die for our sin, He took on our physical limitation: He became tired, hungry, thirsty, and was even overwhelmed emotionally at times (at Lazarus' tomb, in the Garden of Gethsemane). Once His plan of redemption was finished - He shed His blood and bore our sins upon the cross, was buried for three days and nights, then arose victoriously over the grave - He was glorified and ascended back to Heaven. As God He is not limited by our human limitations, but as Man He can sympathize with our weaknesses, our trials and temptations, and have compassion on us - therefore making Him the perfect Saviour!

There are 3 things that the New Testament teaches that God cannot do:

God cannot lie - Titus 1:2-3 In hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began; But hath in due times manifested his word through preaching, which is committed unto me according to the commandment of God our Saviour;

He cannot be tempted with evil - James 1:13 Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man:

He cannot deny Himself - 2 Timothy 2:11-13 It is a faithful saying: For if we be dead with him, we shall also live with him: If we suffer, we shall also reign with him: if we deny him, he also will deny us: If we believe not, yet he abideth faithful: he cannot deny himself.

There are so many ways that I could take these passages (in the sense of a direction for my message - and I am praying for guidance as to to this), but one thing I can emphasize:

God's faithfulness in keeping His Word, and His wisdom and power at work in our lives (according to His perfect, righteous will). What He has spoken regarding salvation is true and trustworthy - He has the power to save us and has promised to do so if we turn to the Lord Jesus Christ in repentance and faith, and He is faithful to keep us saved to the uttermost! I know I can trust Him because He can never be tempted with evil, so He will never be sidetracked from His plans in my life and in my eternity!

Praise the Lord for His promises!

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Daily Devotional for Wednesday August 17th/05

Adam's Failure -- Christ's Strength

The Tender Plant

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Daily Devotional for Thursday August 18th/05

One Study site I enjoy working on is Baptist Bible Believers Website. It is one of our great privileges there to provide older Christian Classics, Biographies, and study materials that are in the Public Domain (we do strive to verify this fact to the best of our ability). That way the true Christians of today can still be blessed by the sound material that past Christians so much enjoyed.

Sometimes we come across material or authors that do not solely use the King James Bible, therefore we strive to proofread all material posted and ensure that the references are in accordance with the only English Bible our website upholds. It is a judgment call some may not agree with, but rather than lose all good material from past generations, sometimes we can use it with a simple disclaimer or editing of Bible passages.

One such author is Theodore Epp from Back To The Bible. He produced some excellent study materials that we have greatly benefitted from (aside from the disclaimer above). As such, we want to pass on some of those older studies, from him and others, to you. The current one I am posting is:

Christ Reflected In Bible Characters

This book is composed of twelve chapters looking at the lives of various Bible characters, and the spiritual examples they can be to us. We hope this book is a blessing to you in your walk with the Lord.

Excerpts from the first two chapters:

The Faith Of Abraham

The Friend Of God

Abraham's faith was of such a quality that he became a friend of God. He was one in whom God could trust. To me that is a most remarkable thing - not only did Abraham trust God but God was able to trust Abraham. One reason God trusted him so was that he commanded his children and his household after him. For that reason God said (paraphrase), "I will not keep anything from him."

Abraham did not stagger at the promises of God through unbelief, but was strong in faith, giving glory to God. He recognized that God is able, and gave God the glory. Faith sees the ability of God, and expects God to keep His Word, and accepts from Him that which He has promised. Abraham was fully persuaded that what God had promised He was able also to perform. It is no wonder, then, that he is called "The Father of Faith." This is the fourth remarkable quality concerning his faith.

The Test Supreme

Abraham had to meet another test - one that no one else has ever had to face before or since. This test was not given that Abraham's faith might break down, but rather that it might become stronger. God came to Abraham and said, "Abraham, I want you to offer that son to me." God said this in spite of the fact that everything concerning Abraham's future, the land, the people, the coming Saviour - everything was wrapped up in that son.

Here is the remarkable response of this man of faith: "By faith Abraham, when he was tried, offered up Isaac: and he that had received the promises offered up his only begotten son, Of whom it was said, That in Isaac shall thy seed be called: Accounting that God was able to raise him up, even from the dead; from whence also he received him in a figure." (Heb. 11:17-19) By this time Abraham had already seen the love of God, for God had given him this son, when the bodies of Abraham and Sarah were dead so far as bringing children into the world was concerned. Abraham was confident that the God, who gave Isaac to him in the first place, would raise him up again, even if he were offered on the altar.

As Abraham prepared to take the final step, the angel of the Lord called to him and said, "Abraham, Abraham... Lay not thine hand upon the lad, neither do thou any thing unto him: for now I know that thou fearest God, seeing thou hast not withheld thy son, thine only son from me. And Abraham lifted up his eyes, and looked, and behold behind him a ram caught in a thicket by his horns: and Abraham went and took the ram, and offered him up for a burnt offering in the stead of his son." (Gen. 22:11-13)

I have sometimes wondered if the heart and mind of God, the Father, in heaven did not look down through the years to another only Son - His own Son - who would not be spared. We read, "He... spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all." Abraham's son was spared when he demonstrated his reliance on God. But there was no ram caught in the thicket to die for the 'greater than Isaac,' who gave up His life on Calvary's cross for us all.

God is all knowing, and for that reason we might wonder why He tested Abraham's faith in this matter. Did not He know what His servant's response would be? We believe God did know, but we would never have known if this test had not been made. This was written for our admonition, and speaks of a faith that God wants us to emulate.

The Walk Of Enoch

Three times Enoch is mentioned in the Scriptures, in one passage of the Old Testament, and in two passages in the New. The phrase "Enoch walked with God" is stated twice in Genesis 5:22-24. That which is emphasized concerning him in Hebrews 11:5-6 is, "he pleased God." According to Jude 14 and 15, he was a preacher of righteousness who, in the days before the flood, warned his generation that Christ was going to come to the earth the second time in judgment on the ungodly.

A Consistent Faith Life

For our purposes here, I want to emphasize Enoch's walk with God. It was a walk of faith, which is the only walk that can please God, for "without faith it is impossible to please Him: for he that cometh to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him" (Heb. 11:6).

Enoch's faith was not marked by some great act of faith from which great consequences stem, but his was a consistent walk throughout his mature years. You and I are living in a time when certain persons are designated to be great men of God, because we see some great acts of God in their lives. But such are not the only people of God. There are many of His children who are walking with Him consistently, whose acts are not known to men. These may be more pleasing to God than some who are acclaimed as "great men of God." After all, God knows which one or ones of His children are really walking with Him.

There is no great event that singles out Enoch's life as is the case with Abraham and some of the other great men of faith. That which makes him stand out is his quality of life which so pleased God and was so precious in His eyes. So delighted was God with Enoch's walk with Him that it is as if God said to him, "Enoch, you just come on up with Me. I am not even going to let you die." That consistent walk was more important to God than all the deeds of many great men. It was a life maintained on a high plane of genuine spirituality.

An Active, Not A Passive Life

Do not think from what we have just said, that Enoch's life was a passive life. There are altogether too many Christians who take the attitude: "That just suits me, because I am not going to do anything for God. All He wants me to do is walk." Enoch's walk was not a walk of idleness. He was a preacher of righteousness. Though it was a walk of faith, it was not necessarily a hidden walk. Neither was it effortless, for walking with God must be done and maintained in the face of opposition from the world, the flesh, and the devil. There were many situations which faced Enoch in his walk with God that were too great for him. But he knew that his God was both able and willing to help him through those difficult places. Enoch found abundant grace for every task and problem in life, because he walked by faith.

It was a continuous walk. He did not spend fifteen or twenty minutes a day with God, then go about his own business. He walked with God, so that God directed him in every avenue and experience in his life.

It was a walk in God's way, not in Enoch's way. It was Enoch walking with God, not God walking according to the plans made by Enoch. Many Christians plan their own lives, and then pray, "God, please bless this plan, and all these things that I have outlined to do."

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Daily Devotional for Friday August 19th/05

My

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Daily Devotional for Saturday August 20th/05

I was praying for what to send out tonight for the Daily Devotional, and I came across The Puzzles Of Job by Ord Morrow again. The book of Job is perhaps the oldest book of the Bible, and contains some of life's deepest questions that mankind has been asking since the Fall. Some of these questions are answered in this great book. Maybe you will find some of the answers that you yourself have been searching for, including the question of primary importance - How Should Man Be Just With God? The following are links to each of the short chapters:

1. Why Do Christians Suffer?

2. What is Man?

3. How Should Man Be Just With GOD?

4. What is Justification?

5. Some Immediate Results Of Justification

6. If a Man Die Will He Live Again?

7. Why Do the Wicked Prosper?

8. What Shall I Do When GOD Rises Up?

9. Where is Wisdom to Be Found?

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Daily Devotional For Sunday August 21st/05

Sunday evening again - and time for some great sermons! Here are two more sermons by two of my favourite preachers:

The Greatest Text In The Bible - by Harry Ironside

Three Rich Men - by Walter Wilson

I trust these will be a blessing to you!

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Daily Devotional for Monday August 22nd/05

Meant To Be Used

"Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises" (2 Pet. 1:4).

When a shipwright builds a vessel, does he build it to keep it upon the stocks? Nay, he builds it for the sea and the storm. When he was making it, he thought of tempests and hurricanes; if he did not, he was a poor shipbuilder.

When God made thee a believer, He meant to try thee; and when He gave thee promises, and bade thee trust them, He gave such promises as are suitable for times of tempest and tossing. Dost thou think that God makes shams like some that have made belts for swimming, which were good to exhibit in a shop, but of no use in the sea?

We have all heard of swords which were useless in war; and even of shoes which were made to sell, but were never meant to walk in. God's shoes are of iron and brass, and you can walk to Heaven in them without their ever wearing out; and His life-belts, you may swim a thousand Atlantics upon them, and there will be no fear of your sinking. His Word of promise is meant to be tried and proved.

There is nothing Christ dislikes more than for His people to make a show-thing of Him, and not to use Him. He loves to be employed by us. Covenant blessings are not meant to be looked at only, but to be appropriated. Even our Lord Jesus is given to us for our present use. Thou dost not make use of Christ as thou oughtest to do.

O man, I beseech you do not treat God's promises as if they were curiosities for a museum; but use them as every day sources of comfort. Trust the Lord whenever your time of need comes on. --C. H. Spurgeon

"Go to the deeps of God's promise,
And claim whatsoever ye will;
The. blessing of God will not fail thee,
His Word He will surely fulfill."

Now can God say no to something He has promised?

(Taken from Streams In The Desert Devotional)

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Daily Devotional for Tuesday August 23rd/05

"Thou whom my soul loveth." --Song of Solomon 1:7

It is well to be able, without any "if" or "but," to say of the Lord Jesus -- "Thou whom my soul loveth." Many can only say of Jesus that they hope they love Him; they trust they love Him; but only a poor and shallow experience will be content to stay here. No one ought to give any rest to his spirit till he feels quite sure about a matter of such vital importance. We ought not to be satisfied with a superficial hope that Jesus loves us, and with a bare trust that we love Him. The old saints did not generally speak with "buts," and "ifs," and "hopes," and "trusts," but they spoke positively and plainly. "I know whom I have believed," saith Paul. "I know that my Redeemer liveth," saith Job. Get positive knowledge of your love of Jesus, and be not satisfied till you can speak of your interest in Him as a reality, which you have made sure by having received the witness of the Holy Spirit, and His seal upon your soul by faith.

True love to Christ is in every case the Holy Spirit's work, and must be wrought in the heart by Him. He is the efficient cause of it; but the logical reason why we love Jesus lies in Himself. Why do we love Jesus? Because He first loved us. Why do we love Jesus? Because He "gave Himself for us." We have life through His death; we have peace through His blood. Though He was rich, yet for our sakes He became poor. Why do we love Jesus? Because of the excellency of His person. We are filled with a sense of His beauty! an admiration of His charms! a consciousness of His infinite perfection! His greatness, goodness, and loveliness, in one resplendent ray, combine to enchant the soul till it is so ravished that it exclaims, "Yea, He is altogether lovely." Blessed love this -- a love which binds the heart with chains more soft than silk, and yet more firm than adamant!

(Taken from Spurgeon's Morning And Evening devotional)

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Daily Devotional for Wednesday August 24th/05

The following poem was written by way of encouragement to those dealing with difficult decisions and issues in their lives - such as Katy-Anne and my sister - who desire to do right, but are uncertain of the way the Lord would have them go right now. It was written to the tune of Day By Day (which lyrics I have quoted below) - a hymn that has truly had an impact on my life these last few months. The first line of my poem came into my mind to that tune and I couldn't get it back out again - so I started praying for the Lord to give me the words to make a song out of it. He brought some passages to mind, and here is the result. I may need to adjust it slightly depending on how it works when singing it. I hope it is a blessing to you.

In His Time

In His time, He makes all things beautiful -
With tear-dimmed eyes, we may not see how.
Keep on trusting in your Father's wisdom,
Do not fear - you're in His hands right now.
Jesus Christ, your Saviour and Redeemer,
Loves you so - of that you need not doubt.
He has a plan - thoughts of peace, for your good -
His plan, that He is working out.

In His time, He makes all things beautiful -
Working all according to His plan;
He has a purpose He set in motion -
Even though we may not understand.
Father, perfect that which concerneth me -
Help me, Lord, to lay these burdens down.
Grant me peace, to know I am in Your will;
Strengthen me, with joy surround.

In His time, He makes all things beautiful -
He heals the soul, binds up the broken heart.
He comforts with a grace beyond all measure -
Hope in Him, and let Him do His part.
He knows your needs before you even ask Him.
Give Him your cares - whether great or small.
Just trust the Lord - He knows the best time
To make all things beautiful!

August 24th/05
Jerry Bouey

Ecclesiastes 3:1, 11 To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: He hath made every thing beautiful in his time: also he hath set the world in their heart, so that no man can find out the work that God maketh from the beginning to the end.

Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.

Romans 8:28 And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.

Day By Day
(Words: Karolina W. Sandell-Berg;
translated from Swedish to English by Andrew L. Skoog.
Music: Oskar Ahnfelt.)

Day by day, and with each passing moment,
Strength I find, to meet my trials here;
Trusting in my Father’s wise bestowment,
I’ve no cause for worry or for fear.
He Whose heart is kind beyond all measure
Gives unto each day what He deems best—
Lovingly, its part of pain and pleasure,
Mingling toil with peace and rest.

Every day, the Lord Himself is near me
With a special mercy for each hour;
All my cares He fain would bear, and cheer me,
He Whose Name is Counselor and Power;
The protection of His child and treasure
Is a charge that on Himself He laid;
“As thy days, thy strength shall be in measure,”
This the pledge to me He made.

Help me then in every tribulation
So to trust Thy promises, O Lord,
That I lose not faith’s sweet consolation
Offered me within Thy holy Word.
Help me, Lord, when toil and trouble meeting,
Ever to take, as from a father’s hand,
One by one, the days, the moments fleeting,
Till I reach the promised land.

I will post the link to the page when the poem is finalized and put up on my poetry site.

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Daily Devotional for Thursday August 25th/05

Why Is Wisdom Needed In Trials?

The hardest thing to do is think straight when you are being attacked from all sides and pressured from every angle. It is hard to keep your priorities straight during those times because the flesh is constantly wanting to do that which pleases itself. The flesh always wants to find the easy way out and a way to move itself out from under the pressure. It tries to hinder that work, but we should not run from the trials. We should pray for wisdom during the trials. James says that we are to let patience have its perfect work. If you pray for wisdom during the trials, God will give you strength, maturity, prayerfulness, and faith to trust Him. That is why wisdom is needed. It is impossible for you to properly interpret the problems of life when you are in the midst of them.

Let me give you some things to remember. First of all, God is all-wise. Jude said, "to the only wise God". He is wisdom. All wisdom proceeds from Him. All wisdom begins with Him. He is the sole source of wisdom. He knows what He is doing even when I don't.

Secondly, God is still in control. Many times the problems of life come and we feel like we're out of control. We sometimes feel like our life is out of control, but He is always in control. All things work together for good to them that love God!

Thirdly, God will never put more on you than you can bear. Whatever God brings your way, He will never allow it to be more than you can bear. He does want to bring us to the place of weakness and ignorance that we might cast ourselves upon Him, but He'll never put more on us than we can bear by claiming His wisdom, His grace, and His peace (1 Corinthians 10:13).

Fourthly, remember that God is perfecting your faith. Job said, "I shall come forth as gold." Job went through the severest trials of any man in the Bible - losing his family, his business, his money, his children, his riches, and his friends. But he said, "Though He slay me, yet will I trust in Him." God was testing his faith and perfecting his life!

Everything in our lives work together for good to conform us to the image of God's Son. God created man in His own image and likeness, and when man sinned against God, he marred the image of God. When God saves a man, He is in the process of restoring His own image in that man. When God puts us through trials it is like the jeweler who puts a diamond on a stand and begins to chisel away all of the rough places. When he is done, that diamond will be worth ten thousand times more than it was before, because it has been perfected and shaped. God chisels away at our lives that we might be conformed to His image and more like the Lord Jesus Christ.

(Taken from chapter 2 of James: "The Application Of Faith To The Issues Of Life" - Douglas Sehorne)

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Daily Devotional for Friday August 26th/05

Most weeks I send out Thursday's and Friday's devotionals out on Thursdays, because I know Friday is normally too busy to do so. But tonight (Thursday) I was thinking I didn't have anything to send out, and not much time to try to look for something appropriate. In 1/2 an hour I need to be out the door to head for work, and that doesn't give me any time to send out the devotionals if I had to also spend time looking for one. I checked my email, and was blessed by a true missionary story (which I had read in the past) sent to me by a friend of mine. I hope it is a blessing and encouragement to all who read it. (Thanks Linda!)

This beautiful story was written by a doctor who worked in South Africa...

One night I had worked hard to help a mother in the labor ward; but in spite of all we could do, she died leaving us with a tiny premature baby and a crying two-year-old daughter. We would have difficulty keeping the baby alive; as we had no incubator (we had no electricity to run an incubator). We also had no special feeding facilities.

Although we lived on the equator, nights were often chilly with treacherous drafts. One student midwife went for the box we had for such babies and the cotton wool that the baby would be wrapped in.

Another went to stoke up the fire and fill a hot water bottle. She came back shortly in distress to tell me that in filling the bottle, it had burst (rubber perishes easily in tropical climates).

"And it is our last hot water bottle!" she exclaimed. As in the West, it is no good crying over spilled milk, so in Central Africa it might be considered no good crying over burst water bottles. They do not grow on trees, and there are no drugstores down forest pathways.

"All right," I said, "put the baby as near the fire as you safely can, and sleep between the baby and the door to keep it free from drafts. Your job is to keep the baby warm."

The following noon, as I did most days, I went to have prayers with any of the orphanage children who chose to gather with me. I gave the youngsters various suggestions of things to pray about and told them about the tiny baby. I explained our problem about keeping the baby warm enough, mentioning the hot water bottle, and that the baby could so easily die if it got chills. I also told them of the two-year-old sister, crying because her mother had died.

During prayer time, one ten-year old girl, Ruth, prayed with the usual blunt conciseness of our African children. "Please, God," she prayed, "Send us a hot water bottle today. It'll be no good tomorrow, God, as the baby will be dead, so please send it this afternoon."

While I gasped inwardly at the audacity of the prayer, she added, "And while You are about it, would You please send a dolly for the little girl so she'll know You really love her?"

As often with children's prayers, I was put on the spot. Could I honestly say, "Amen"? I just did not believe that God could do this. Oh, yes, I know that He can do everything, the Bible says so. But there are limits, aren't there? The only way God could answer this particular prayer would be by sending me a parcel from the homeland. I had been in Africa for almost four years at that time, and I had never, ever, received a parcel from home.

Anyway, if anyone did send me a parcel, who would put in a hot water bottle? I lived on the equator!

Halfway through the afternoon, while I was teaching in the nurses' training school, a message was sent that there was a car at my front door. By the time I reached home, the car had gone, but there, on the verandah, was a large twenty-two pound parcel. I felt tears pricking my eyes. I could not open the parcel alone, so I sent for the orphanage children. Together we pulled off the string, carefully undoing each knot. We folded the paper, taking care not to tear it unduly. Excitement was mounting. Some thirty or forty pairs of eyes were focused on the large cardboard box.

From the top, I lifted out brightly colored, knitted jerseys. Eyes sparkled as I gave them out. Then there were the knitted bandages for the leprosy patients, and the children looked a little bored. Then came a box of mixed raisins and sultanas - that would make a batch of buns for the weekend. Then, as I put my hand in again, I felt the.....could it really be? I grasped it and pulled it out - yes, a brand new, rubber hot water bottle. I cried.

I had not asked God to send it; I had not truly believed that He could. Ruth was in the front row of the children. She rushed forward, crying out, "If God has sent the bottle, He must have sent the dolly too!"

Rummaging down to the bottom of the box, she pulled out the small, beautifully dressed dolly. Her eyes shone! She had never doubted! Looking up at me, she asked: "Can I go over with you and give this dolly to that little girl, so she'll know that Jesus really loves her?" Of course, I replied!

That parcel had been on the way for five whole months. Packed up by my former Sunday school class, whose leader had heard and obeyed God's prompting to send a hot water bottle, even to the equator. And one of the girls had put in a dolly for an African child - five months before, in answer to the believing prayer of a ten-year-old to bring it "that afternoon." "Before they call, I will answer." (Isaiah 65:24)

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Daily Devotional for Saturday August 27th/05

"Thou couldst have no power at all against me, except it were given thee from above" (John 19:11).

Nothing that is not God's will can come into the life of one who trusts and obeys God. This fact is enough to make our life one of ceaseless thanksgiving and joy. For "God's will is the one hopeful, glad, and glorious thing in the world"; and it is working in the omnipotence for us all the time, with nothing to prevent it if we are surrendered and believing.

One who was passing through deep waters of affliction wrote to a friend: "Is it not a glorious thing to know that, no difference how unjust a thing may be, or how absolutely it may seem to be from Satan, by the time it reaches us it is God's will for us, and will work for good to us? For all things work together for good to us who love God. And even of the betrayal, Christ said, "The cup which my Father hath given me, shall I not drink it?" We live charmed lives if we are living in the center of God's will. All the attacks that Satan, through others' sin, can hurl against us are not only powerless to harm us, but are turned into blessings on the way. --H. W. S.

In the center of the circle
Of the Will of God I stand:
There can come no second causes,
All must come from His dear hand.
All is well! for 'tis my Father
Who my life hath planned.

Shall I pass through waves of sorrow?
Then I know it will be best;
Though I cannot tell the reason,
I can trust, and so am blest.
God is Love, and God is faithful,
So in perfect Peace I rest.

With the shade and with the sunshine,
With the joy and with the pain,
Lord, I trust Thee! both are needed,
Each Thy wayward child to train,
Earthly loss, did we but know it,
Often means our heavenly gain.

--I. G. W.

(Taken from Streams In The Desert devotional)

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Daily Devotional for Sunday August 28th/05

Cursed Or Blessed

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Daily Devotional for Monday August 29th/05

One subject I never tire of studying out are the types found in the Old Testament - especially in regards to the tabernacle and the sacrificial system. There is always something new to be gleaned about Christ and His atonement for our sins, about the Holy Spirit, about our Christian walk. Today I have another short study to share with you on the furniture in the tabernacle.

THE ALTAR OF BURNT-OFFERING

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Daily Devotional for Tuesday August 30th/05

The following was posted today on our study site by another member, and I wanted to pass it on:

Never Again

Never again will I say, "I can't," for "I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me" (Philippians 4:13).

Never again will I admit lack, for "But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus" (Philippians 4:19).

Never again will I fear, for "For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind" (2 Timothy 1:7).

Never again will I harbor doubt and lack of faith, for "The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear?" (Psalm 27:1)

Never again will I allow the supremacy of Satan over my life, for "greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world" (1 John 4:4).

Never again will I admit defeat, for "Now thanks be unto God, which always causeth us to triumph in Christ, and maketh manifest the savour of his knowledge by us in every place" (2 Corinthians 2:14).

Never again will I lack wisdom, for "If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him" (James 1:5).

Never again will I be worried and frustrated, "Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you" (1 Peter 5:7).

Never again will I be in bondage, for "Now the Lord is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty" (2 Corinthians 3:17).

Now isn't that good news!

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Daily Devotional for Wednesday August 31st/05

I don't have a specific quote or article for you today, but I would like to pass on some links to various books that we have been posting recently on our study site - some of these are works in progress and are still being typed out, but this lets you know some of what's in store (and, if you'd like, you could start reading them and bookmark them for later reading):

For lighter (but thought-provoking) reading:
The Holy War - by John Bunyan
This is an allegory, along the nature of his most famous allegory, Pilgrim's Progress, that deals with the fall of man and his redemption by Jesus Christ, as pictured by the town of Mansoul (Lord willing, after this book is completely up. I will post Pilgrim's Progress - so we have it here as well. There are some other sites that have some Christian Classics, but often there is too much spiritual junk to wade through, and it is not safe to pass on links to those sites due to the possibility of other less discerning Christians being led astray.)

For heavier reading (not for the fainthearted):
Foxe's Book Of Martyrs - by John Foxe
One of the best books out there that shows the persecution and martyrdom that true Christians went through in past eras of the church. Not a book for the fainthearted - but it will exhort you to live faithfully, and to be strengthened by the fact that the Lord gives His children grace in their times of persecutions and trials. As I have so often stated to others: You will not be able to die for the Lord Jesus Christ, unless you are living for Him! So let's keep being faithful to Him.

For those who love biographies and missionary stories:
How I Know GOD Answers Prayer - Rosalind Goforth
Here are some wonderful accounts of the Lord answering prayer in the life of missionaries to China, John and Rosalind Goforth. We also have another book posted by the same author: Climbing: Memories Of A Missionary's Wife. Both are well worth reading if you want to read about God's hand of care, provision, and safety at work in the lives of some of His faithful servants.

For those who like meatier studies:
Romans: Prologue To Prison - Richard Halverson
An excellent study on the book of Romans, dealing with God's plan of salvation and the power of the Gospel of Christ. The kind of studies that break down a book of the Bible into practical, bite-size chunks, easy to digest, but substantial in content.

James: "The Application Of Faith To The Issues Of Life" - Doug Sehorne
The importance of faith to every area of our Christian life - some very practical illustrations and explanations. Hey, even I learned some things! ;) Actually, it was a blessing to pass on some of what brother Sehorne has stated in his earlier chapters to those going through trials and seeking the Lord's will in their Christian walk. Looking forward to posting the rest of these studies!

Each of these studies will have new chapters posted as we are able, just keep your eyes on them, and enjoy. We trust that these books/studies (and many others that you find posted at Baptist Bible Believers Website) will be a blessing and a help to you in your Christian growth - whether biographies, Christian Classics, practical studies, devotionals, or even articles on some contemporary issues facing Christians in our day.

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