Those who stumbled: 1 Samuel 2.4 VOTD

“The bows of warriors are shattered, but those who stumbled have taken on strength.”

1 Samuel 2.4

Ana’s song of praise celebrates the God who causes the reversal of fortunes. Some think she appropriated an early, already existing song to her situation. She thanks God and acknowledges his grace.

God gives the advantage to the disadvantaged. How does this perspective affect our faith and work?

#strength #power #VOTD

As instructed: 2 Kings 5.14 VOTD

“So he went down and dipped in the Jordan seven times, as the prophet had instructed. His skin became as smooth as a young child’s and he was healed.”

2 Kings 5.14

Naaman, the Syrian army commander, first balked at the prophet Elias’s command. Only when he decided to obey was he healed of his disease.

Just as there is power in prayer for the Christian because God answers, there is power in obedience for the sinner because God forgives. When at some moment of obedience in your life did you see God’s power?

#obedience #power #VOTD

Lack power: Isaiah 40.28-29 VOTD

“Do you not know?
Have you not heard?
The Lord is an eternal God,
the Creator of the whole earth.
He does not get tired or weary;
there is no limit to his wisdom.
He gives strength to those who are tired;
to the ones who lack power, he gives renewed energy.”

Isaiah 40.28-29

Israel told herself that God was not concerned with her problems, v. 27. Repeatedly, Isaiah told the people that the problem was not with God, but with her sins, Isa 59.1-8.

“Believers cannot win the battle by themselves. They need the power of God, Ephesians 3:16; 6:10. His power becomes our strength when we trust in Him, II Corinthians 12:9. Faith is like an extension cord. When plugged into God, divine strength flows into human beings. The key is being plugged in, Ephesians 1:18-21; 3:20; Colossians 1:29. But, when we are firmly jointed to Him, we become more than conquerors through Him who loved us, Romans 8:35,37-39.” —Ed Mathews, “Plow New Ground”

#power #strength #VOTD

VOTD: Zechariah 10.12 ‘I will strengthen’

“‘Thus I will strengthen them by my power, and they will walk about in my name,’ says the Lord.”

Zechariah 10.12

The world’s superpowers would fall, but the Lord promised to strengthen his people.

How does God’s strength overcome today’s opposition?

#VOTD #power #name

VOTD: Proverbs 8.14

“Counsel and sound wisdom belong to me;
I possess understanding and might.”

Proverbs 8.14

They say knowledge is power; God’s wisdom contains both.

How does Solomon say this wisdom is obtained?

#power, #votd, #wisdom

The most exciting find of all (and it’s not bacon)

bolt-light

There must have been no greater exclamation among the Jews of the first century than that which Andrew declared to his brother Simon and what Philip told his friend Nathaniel: “We have found the Messiah!” Jn 1.41, 45. One can feel the excitement in those words. The NET Bible rightly ends it with an exclamation point. Continue reading

#bible-versions, #corollaries, #evangelism, #jesus-christ, #power

The ease of obedience

The commandment of Christ appears to be difficult when we consider it from a human point of view. The natural man feels repulsion at selfless service. The unregenerate person finds the will of God a hard thing to do. Those who fulfill their own desires, even if they wear the name of Christ, respond only with great effort to bearing his cross. Continue reading

#commandments, #corollaries, #power

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(#109) The Proverbs of Solomon 16:14-15-Governing the Government (#4)

Since God Created humans, only God can provide specific understanding of human behavior. God gave Solomon Divine Wisdom (1 Kings Chapters 3 and 10) to explain what and why behavior is as it is, and Proverbs 10:1-24:34 are randomly written, as if they were Solomon’s judgments about individual cases brought to him, or simply God-given explanations about life. New Testament passages may help see the continuation of Wisdom offered through Jesus Christ.

Proverbs 16:14-15: “As messengers of death is the king’s wrath, But a wise man will appease it. 15 In the light of the king’s face is life, And his favor is like a cloud of the latter rain.”

Verse 14: When all authority in government is invested in one person, judgments and rulings are purely arbitrary, whimsical, and capricious. The purpose of having a constitutional “rule of law” is to avoid the abuse of power so easily entered into with only a king, or tsar, or fuhrer, or dictator. People who are subject to the whim of “the king’s wrath” might expect the least provocation to “set him off.” King Saul showed Ahimelech the priest, and those with him, the wrath of a king (1 Samuel 22:11-19). Other proverbs reflect danger in a too-powerful king: “The king’s wrath is like the roaring of a lion, But his favor is like dew on the grass” (Proverbs 19:12); “The wrath of a king is like the roaring of a lion; Whoever provokes him to anger sins against his own life” (Proverbs 20:2); “Like a roaring lion and a charging bear Is a wicked ruler over poor people” (Proverbs 28:15). Solomon, later, expressed this absolute power of a king: “Do not be hasty to go from his presence. Do not take your stand for an evil thing, for he does whatever pleases him. Where the word of a king is, there is power; And who may say to him, ‘What are you doing?’” (Ecclesiastes 8:3-4) A “wise man” will surely tread lightly around such a person. There is no better time to apply another proverb: “A soft answer turns away wrath, But a harsh word stirs up anger” (Proverbs 15:1).

Verse 15: On the other hand, however, a happy king makes life last, and refreshes like “the latter rain” of a growing season, and which helps produce a good harvest.

Under Moses’ Law, kings were supposed to follow their own personal copy of God’s Word (Deuteronomy 17:18-20), and that should have been their “constitution” to guide their rule. Even under Jesus’ Law, obedience to government is predicated upon one’s humility before God: “Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God” (Romans 13:1).

All Scriptures and comments are based upon the New King James Version,unless otherwise noted.

#authority, #bible-study, #christian-living, #constitution, #kings-wrath, #power, #practical-lessons, #proverbs, #wisdom, #word-of-god

Have you ever gone to your car and…

Have you ever gone to your car and turned the key and nothing? No click, no starter engaging, nothing. The battery is dead. Have you ever noticed that it always happens when it is cold and nasty outside? Why doesn’t it play out when it is nice and warm. Not only that but it always happens when you want to go somewhere. It doesn’t happen when you have plenty of time, but when you are needed somewhere, expected somewhere, or intend to get somewhere. I believe the devil must be behind it. Turn the key and there is no power! But with the Lord, there is always power! Nice weather, cold outside, when you are in a hurry or with plenty of time. the Lord always provides power. Romans 15:13 “Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”

#just-a-minute, #power

Power

#power

Re: Day 18 — Psalm 1:4

I have said several times, and recently, somewhere, that the church appears, from a human standpoint, as a fragile thing, on the verge of being blown away at any moment by the slightest wind. Both saints and the good works of the kingdom seem to exist on the precipice of destruction.

This is true, however, not of God’s people, who show their metal under trials and persecutions, but of the wicked. So says the psalmist.

Not so with the wicked! Instead they are like wind-driven chaff.
Psalm 1:4 NET

With a puff, the wicked are gone. The righteous are the stable ones, and the difference is attitude toward God’s law. The stabilizer is laser focus on the word of God.

Perhaps those churches who have nice buildings, full-time staff with nice titles, elders with years of experience, and a long, proud history may not feel the tentativeness in the work that I feel, where we move from place to place, have no one working full-time, lack qualified men to serve as elders, and started yesterday, relatively speaking, in this effort.

We feel how the work suffers when someone turns from the Way, when the seed falls on rocky soil, when persecution thins the ranks, when sickness lays low a saint and death take precious friends. (Does anyone else feel this?)

Yet, still, for all the apparent weakness and the tenuousness of our efforts and our very lives, we are not the ones to be swept away by the elements. After the storm, we still stand. Gone are the wicked. Because they pretend strength by their own power, but we hold to the Lord.

So will we hold until the end.

#power, #psalms, #righteous, #strength, #wicked

The Best Thing About God In 1 Corinthians

In my view, the best thing about God, is found in 1 Corinthians Chapter 1, where Paul emphasizes the fact that “the power of God” is closely associated with the “preaching of the cross” (1 Corinthians 1:18; cf. Romans 1:16).

To those who have no desire to know, understand, or continue to pattern their lives after the instructions found in the saving gospel of Christ, the preaching of the cross is to them “foolishness” (1 Corinthians 1:18; cf. Romans 1:21-22).

#associated, #best, #continue, #cross, #desire, #god, #gospel, #instructions, #know, #pattern, #power, #preaching, #thing, #understand

The Bleakest Bible Passage

One of the bleakest passages found in the Bible is found in Romans 1:24, where the phrase “gave them up” is found. The phrase is again repeated in verse 26 and 28, emphasizing the fact that when God gives an individual (or individuals) up, there’s no hope for that individual. Through the power of choice (Joshua 24:15), they have determined and sealed their own eternal destiny.

In his commentary on Romans http://www.searchgodsword.org/com/bcc/view.cgi?book=ro&chapter=001, Brother Burton Coffman provides the following comment regarding this phrase:

“These dreadful words, thrice repeated with increasing intensity, are a kind of litany of the doomed, showing how dreadful is the fate of them that are given up of God, that is, handed over to the consequences of their rebellion.”

When God gives us up, there is no bleaker moment.

#bible, #bleak, #choice, #destiny, #determine, #emphasize, #eternal, #hope, #individual, #passage, #phrase, #power, #repeat

Caving In Under Pressure

The incident I’m thinking about is found in John 11:41-48 regarding the religious leaders’ (chief priests & Pharisees) response after Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead. When they heard the news of his resurrection, they instigated a plot to kill Jesus (John 11:49-53).

They caved in under the pressure of praise and popularity, being afraid of loosing their position of power and wealth within the Roman government.

They loved the praise of men more than the praise of God (John 12:42-43).

Men have not changed this manner of thinking in the 21st Century. Most still love the praise of men more than the praise of God.

This is a dangerous state to be found in (Acts 12:20-23).

#government, #incident, #instigate, #kill, #news, #plot, #position, #power, #priest, #regard, #religious, #response, #resurrection

Nearly all men can stand adversity, but …

Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power.

Abraham Lincoln

#adversity, #character, #power, #test