Spiritual Victory

So how does the once great Christian America rescue itself from spiritual captivity? Can our nation once again live by the Biblical principles upon which it was founded? We’ll answer the second question first: in a word, yes. The Old Testament tells us:

    “If My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.” (2 Chronicles 7:14)

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Spiritual Captivity

bound-with-chains-of-the-spirit-and-of-men11Our nation is under spiritual captivity. I was reminded last night that here in Northwest Florida on Memorial Day Weekend, designated to remember our fallen military in times of war, Satan celebrates the highest form of human depravity. On Pensacola Beach, homosexuals celebrate Gay Memorial Day Weekend and rename Pensacola Beach to Sexacola Beach.

We have witnessed in our nation, Democrat lawmakers praying and thanking God for increased governmental abortion funding, making abortions more accessible, and for doctors that murder unborn babies. They celebrate “the blessing of choice,” meaning they are thanking God for being able to choose to kill their unborn baby.

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It’s All Because of Jesus

I awoke this morning with the song “All Because of Jesus” running through my mind. Our praise band did the song this past Sunday. It’s wonderful to wake up with a praise song running through your head. That in itself is a work of grace. It is also an important reminder.

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Turning the Corner

Life can be so busy that we miss it. Our schedules rule our days and even the slightest desire to “stop and smell the roses” is overruled by our next appointment or destination. Our busyness is the shame of the modern world.

Our pastor has begun a three-part study of Psalm 19 where David writes of “The Perfect Revelation of the Lord,” as it is described in my Bible. I confess that I am guilty of filling my day with things that lack any eternal value in light of Scripture. As my pastor began reading the first six verses of the psalm, I couldn’t get past verse 1:

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Getting Knowledge and Grace

Sherlock-Holmes-007I am by nature a loner. As a child, I was totally content to play by myself with all my imaginary friends. My late mother used to tell me about how when I was four, she looked out the kitchen window to the backyard and saw me playing. She said she could see me having a grand time talking and directing at least three different imaginary friends. Perhaps it is because I had two older sisters, while doting over me constantly, obviously were not boys with whom to play. More likely, it is writer’s nature to sit alone and contemplate and imagine different scenarios. This can be creative at times and detrimental at others. The Bible warns against too much isolation:

    “A man who isolates himself seeks his own desire; he rages against all wise judgment.” (Proverbs 18:1)

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Spiritual Nourishment

Knowing God’s will; that seems to be the great mystery to many a Christian. We studied that last Sunday in Bible study. Volumes have been written on it. In fact, I’m working on just such a book. Part of the mystery was unlocked for our church at least in our pastor’s latest sermon. I wonder how many in attendance even caught the clue. Pastor Brunet said, “Doing the will of God is how I am spiritually fed.”

He was preaching from John 4 when Jesus was met by His disciples after talking to the woman at the well. The disciples had gone into the city Sychar to get some food and upon their return urged Jesus to eat. The Lord told them He had “food to eat of which you do not know.” Again they missed the point; Christ was talking about spiritual food. Nevertheless, Jesus cleared up their confusion:

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Not Really Wanting To Know

head_in_the_sand 2Yesterday in Sunday School we studied Acts 21 on how to know the will of God. I shared that if we were totally honest with ourselves, most Christians would admit that they really don’t want to know God’s will. Why? If we know God’s will, then we are without excuse for not obeying it. It is so much easier to deceive ourselves into believing we cannot know God’s will. The Bible teaches us quite differently:

    “Teach me to do Your will, for You are my God; Your Spirit is good. Lead me in the land of uprightness.” (Psalm 143:10)

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Feelin’ Good

feeling goodI woke up this morning with an old blues rocker song from Elvin Bishop called “Feelin’ Good” playing in my head. Funny thing is I wasn’t feeling bad when I went to bed. However, my wife and I spent a wonderful day yesterday driving along the Gulf Coast to Panama City Beach and had lunch there. We have great memories there because that is where we honeymooned. Ending a long four-day Independence Day weekend spending time with my bride always makes for “feelin’ good.”

Studies have shown that human wholeness combines spiritual health with physical health. Our emotional and mental states can literally make us ill, so having a healthy spirit makes for overall health wellness.

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Spiritual Calluses

spiritual callusesCallused hands on a man is a good thing. We build up calluses on our hands through hard work, which is also a good thing. Man was made to work. From the beginning of mankind, God has expected man to work. In Genesis 2 God puts Adam into the Garden of Eden to work. In Genesis 3 we find a life of hard work through sweat and toil is prescribed. A man who works will avoid many of the troubles this life brings:

    “But we urge you, brethren, that you increase more and more; that you also aspire to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business, and to work with your own hands, as we commanded you, that you may walk properly toward those who are outside, and that you may lack nothing.” (1 Thessalonians 4:10b-12)

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Always Looking Down

C.S. Lewis quote on prideThere are days when I am convinced that my pride is the thorn in my flesh. I try to overcome it with sheer will power. I try to pray it away. I try to give myself pep talks in the morning that today is going to be different and I’m going to not draw attention to myself. I resolve to not be haughty and yet I resort to my old prideful ways. It almost seems like a curse, but that too is somewhat prideful. Pride is part of my sin nature and although I am born again, my old nature is still with me. The cure is found in a simple verse from the Book of Proverbs:

    “When pride comes, then comes shame; but with the humble is wisdom.” (Proverbs 11:2)

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The Liberty Of Jesus

FreedomIt was on a Tuesday, 238 years ago this date, that we as a nation declared our independence from Great Britain. Think I’m a couple of days too early? July 2, 1776 is the day the Second Continental Congress voted to adopt Richard Henry Lee’s resolution declaring independence from Great Britain. Twelve colonies voted unanimously, with New York abstaining. It was on July 4, 1776 that Thomas Jefferson made his final edit on the Declaration of Independence. John Hancock and Charles Thompson signed the Declaration of Independence on July 4th, with the 54 other delegates signing the document on August 2, 1776.

Why the history lesson in a devotional? I share this with you so that you know the complete and truthful history of our nation’s founding instead of what you learned in school. As John Adams declared while defending the British troops during the Boston Massacre trial, “Facts are stubborn things.” Facts are not only stubborn, but they are also very important.

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