A Blessing

Whoever gives heed to instruction prospers, and blessed is he who trusts in the LORD. Proverbs 16:20

The Bible is clear about certain things; trusting in God is one of those things. Is it the “trust” of where to put your faith? Yes. Is it the trust in you doing something you know you should be doing but feel inadequate? Yes. Is it trusting Him when you are running out of money before you run out of month? Yes.

In this verse, God is telling us that when we trust Him we get a blessing. Is the blessing material, emotional, or spiritual? Perhaps it’s all of the above.

  • Perhaps it’s the peace of mind knowing that you are in His care.
  • Perhaps it’s the assurance we need in these turbulent times.

We need to be reminded often about this because we forget. The world beats down on us and we absorb some of those beatings.

We don’t run to get the blessing. We run to the Lord for He cares for us.

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He Sees It

Better to be lowly in spirit and among the oppressed than to share plunder with the proud. Proverbs 16:19

Yesterday I talked at length about the poor and oppressed. The opposite of course is the proud and the oppressors. It’s an interesting thing to watch world events as they unfold before our eyes. There are some very powerful and wealthy individuals who have a great hand in what is happening in the world. Don’t misunderstand. I’m not talking about a conspiracy where five or six people are “calling the shots,” though it may exist.

I’m referring to leaders who line their pockets at the expense of those who earn the money and send in the form of taxes and fees. Of course a worker is worth his wages, but when politicians have power over the lives of people, it corrupts. No country or State is exempt I’m afraid, though some are more blatant about the graft than others.

So, what is a good God-fearing child of God to do? First we still need to accept that God is in control. I don’t think we can say it often enough because there are enough things to weigh us down regularly. Secondly, we need to know that God sees everything.

  • That politician with extra hands in the till? He sees it.
  • That law she wrote that takes extra money from you to give to her constituents? He sees it.
  • The bill they signed into law that legalizes abortion? Yes, He sees it (though He must weep over it).
  • The rare politician who is on his knees crying out to God for wisdom? Oh yes, He definitely sees it.

If you have been reading this for any length of time you’ll recognize this Russian proverb. God sees everything but waits.

Above all else, remember this: God is in control.

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The Oppressed

Better to be lowly in spirit and among the oppressed than to share plunder with the proud. Proverbs 16:19

This verse flies right in the face of our modern culture. Humility. Oppressed.

What does it take to be humble and siding with the oppressed in today’s world? I’ve often asked myself that question. The implication in this verse is that the poor is the oppressed, quite possibly because they’ve been oppressed by those who are wealthy.

So, who are the poor in our society? Are they the homeless? Are they welfare recipients?

Who are the oppressed? This is a little clearer. The oppressed are the downtrodden, who are trying every day to make a difference but just can’t get ahead. A number of years ago I lived in a place where one man was trying to help immigrants in their living situation. Quite possibly they were illegal immigrants. I asked him about it and his comments were not surprising. “If the government is doing nothing about the situation, I feel I need to try to help them at least while they are here.”

The oppressed are those in our society who are persecuted because of their beliefs, what they look like, how they dress, and sometimes because of their skin color (though not nearly as the media would like you to believe).

The oppressed are those who cannot defend themselves. The elderly and the unborn fall into this category very clearly. Children are also in this category.

Based on how things are going economically in this world (mostly caused by greedy and power-hungry politicians who don’t know a thing about budgets or consequences), I believe we will be seeing many many more poor in the future. We may not have to wonder about the poor and downtrodden.

Wherever you are, pray for your nation. Pray for your leaders. Pray that the Gospel may go forth.

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The Very Good News

They found the stone rolled away from the tomb, but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. Luke 24:2-3

What an amazing two verses, the Easter story right there. Stone was rolled away. No body in the tomb. Matthew elaborates that an Angel of the Lord appeared, but that’s just icing on the cake, as it were.

Throughout the centuries, the spread of Christianity hinged on the truth of these two verse. Don’t misunderstand. The entire Bible is true but its essence going forward is about the resurrection of the Lord. Other religious figures have claimed immortality but only Jesus Christ has done it.

The stone’s been rolled away. The tomb is empty. The body is gone. That is very good news.

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A Tomb Secure?

“Take a guard,” Pilate answered. “Go, make the tomb as secure as you know how.” So they went and made the tomb secure by putting a seal on the stone and posting the guard. Matthew 27:65-66

Recall a few days before this passage, Pilate said that he had the power to release Jesus. Recall that he really thought Jesus was innocent but wouldn’t release Him for fear of the people. Now we come to this verse. His guards had explained to him that they needed more protection.

Pilate knew Jesus was different but to what extent? Did he really think his disciples would come to steal him away or did he sense that someone like Jesus could actually remove the stone? We don’t know but Pilate seemed to be covering himself, in which case he could claim that he had tried to make the tomb as secure as possible.

Just reading this verse we see the anticipation of the actual resurrection. We know the ending. We know this is the highlight, if you will, of the entire Bible. The Resurrection. Hallelujah.

This is also a time that Satan absolutely hates. Radical Muslims are threatening to unleash a worldwide series of terrorism this weekend, Easter weekend. Pray that their minds and eyes will be confused and that their plots will be thwarted.

Pray that Jesus Christ will be exalted in churches throughout the world!

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