GETTING THE MOST FROM GOD'S WORD:

"Do NOT labor for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to everlasting LIFE..." - The Gospel of John 6:27 (NKJV)
A systematic and daily reading of the Word of God is important in maintaining a strong Christian life. Establish a daily quiet time with God and His Word. Pray that the Holy Spirit will help you understand what you read. By following our daily Bible reading schedule through this blog, you will be able to read the Bible through in a year. Please note that you may utilize the ‘BIBLE READER’ app that is installed at the bottom of this webpage to assist you in reading the specified scripture portion for today.

To get the MOST from God's Word, please do the following intentionally:
1. REQUEST God to connect with you as you read the word of God with FOCUS and OPENNESS to see what God wants to speak with you.
2. READ the selected sections of Scripture slowly as you mark the words and phrases that intrigue you, even reading them the second time to get a better understanding.
3. REFLECT on what God is communicating to you; stopping long enough to let the seed of God's Word take root in your heart.
4. RESPOND to the passage speaking directly to God about what is in your heart, and then look out for ways to live out what you find - individually, and to others within your church and elsewhere.

As you read and meditate, ask yourself the following three questions:
a) What is God speaking to me through this passage?
b) Is there a command, a promise or a warning for me?
c) Is there an example for me to follow?

Please POST your comments below if there is a thought or message that the Lord has spoken to you through the passage that you are reading and meditating today. Please make sure that your post is aligned to the scripture passage mentioned at the header. All comments should pertain to the relevant scripture portions only, and should be aimed to glorify God (the true author of 'The Bible') & edify everyone who visits this blog site daily - both young and old. May God bless you abundantly for encouraging others through your comments!

Let's PRAY...
LORD, give me the desire to take a little time out of my busy schedule today as I read and meditate on Your Word. Give me this day MY DAILY BREAD. Speak to me clearly & lead me today as my Good Shepherd. Help me to be a blessing to others who interact with me as I attempt to be a living witness of Your Word today. In Your Name I pray, AMEN.

Monday, September 21, 2015

We are LED ASTRAY by our LIES

We are LED ASTRAY by our LIES

September 21 Bible Reading: Amos Chapters 1-3

Thus says the Lord: "For three transgressions of Judah, and for four, I will not turn away its punishment, because they have despised the law of the Lord, and have not kept His commandments. Their lies lead them astray, lies which their fathers followed." (Amos 2:4)

Amos (name means ‘burden-bearer’) was a sheep breeder-turned-prophet, who prophesied during a period around 760 A.D. He denounced the sins of six heathen nations before he pronounced judgment on Judah (vv. 4–5). While the heathen nations had sinned against their conscience (see Rom. 2:12–16), Judah had blatantly sinned against God’s law and had lied without fear of God. God had judged all the heathen nations based on their treatment of others, especially His people. But God held Judah to a higher standard, and would harshly judge them because they had turned to idols by rejecting God’s laws, and had been speaking lies in the process!

Amos now warns the people of Judah that their lies would always lead them astray, and their deception would always cause them trouble. In fact, they were already in trouble largely because they had followed the lies devised by their fathers (v. 4). The history of Judah reveals that the next generation suffered tragically from patterns of lies and deception when Nebuchadnezzar conquered Jerusalem in 586 B.C.

Is speaking lies such a bad thing? In fact, many people try to justify lying by suggesting that it is normal, and even inevitable, and sooner or later we have to lie. The worst tragedy about this way of living is that we end up telling lies and believing lies about God (Rom. 1:25) and about ourselves (1 John 1:10). However, lying is not an inescapable fact of human nature. God does not lie (Num. 23:19; Titus 1:2), and He tells us not to lie in the Ten Commandments (Ex. 20:16). Likewise, Paul exhorted believers not to lie to one another (Eph. 4:25; Col. 3:9). So it is possible to speak and live with honesty!

The Bible is clear that lying leads to trouble, and gives many examples to show that “he who speaks lies shall perish” (Prov. 19:9), and that God hates dishonesty (6:16–17). Sin and death were introduced into our world because of a lie by Satan (Gen. 3:1–7; 1 Tim. 2:14). Other examples of lying in the Bible include Cain (Gen. 4:1–16), Jacob (Gen. 27:5–17, 41–46), Joseph’s brothers (Gen. 37:28–35), Potiphar’s wife (39:7–20), King David (2 Sam. 11–12), Peter (Matt. 26:69–74), and Ananias/Sapphira (Acts 5:1–11).

Our Lord Jesus spoke clearly about the nature of lying when he declared that lies are of the devil (John 8:44). We are led astray by our lies! Let us understand that as God’s children we should not speak a single lie in whatever shade of color (white/grey/black). Jesus is the source of all truth (John 14:6). When we speak truth and practice integrity, we confirm to the world that we are the children of God. Let us love others by speaking truth always!

"My little children, let us not love in word or in tongue, but in deed and in truth. And by this we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before Him. For if our heart condemns us, God is greater than our heart, and knows all things. Beloved, if our heart does not condemn us, we have confidence toward God. And whatever we ask we receive from Him, because we keep His commandments and do those things that are pleasing in His sight." (1 John 3:18-22)

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