Saturday, February 23, 2019

Sunday With Pastor John Piper: What Does 'I Never Knew You' Mean?


PASTOR JOHN PIPER answers a question I've often grappled with: What does it mean when Jesus says, 'I Never Knew You?' It's a humbling and sobering answer.

I would answer it a little differently.  I would say,  Christ can only know us as sinners in need of Him.  Then we repent of our sins  and ask Him for forgiveness.  Jesus came to save the lost. We are all lost and in need of salvation.  But it's only those who know they are lost and own it who are saved. If you don't know you're lost and need a Savior, then there is no need for you to seek him, except maybe at the last minute.  It's often too late.  Scary.

Remember the Parable of the Prodigal Son who takes his inheritance to a foreign country, squanders it on wine, women and song, then ends up in poverty, feeding pigs and eating slop. It's only then he comes to his senses and decides to go back to his Father and ask for a job as a servant so he can eat.  When the Father sees his lost son from a faraway distance,  he joyfully embraces his wayward boy because the son repents.  And the rest is glorious salvation history.  The Father clearly knew his   wayward son. We don't ever have to be perfect to be known by God,  only to know we need The Father and humbly as him in, or back into our lives.


Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Super Moon Tuesday


HAPPY are they who
have not walked in the counsel of the wicked, nor lingered in the way of sinners, nor sat in the seats of the scornful!

Their delight is in the law of the Lord, and they meditate on his law day and night.

They are like trees planted by streams of water,  bearing fruit in due season,  with leaves that do not wither; everything they do shall prosper.

It is not so with the wicked; they are like chaff which the wi d blows away.

Therefore the wicked shall not stand upright when the judgment comes, nor the sinner in the council of the righteous.

For the Lord knows the way of the righteous, but the way of the wicked is doomed.

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Sunday Late

 PSALM 33:12-22

12 BLESSED IS THE NATION whose God is the Lord,
    the people he chose for his inheritance.
13 From heaven the Lord looks down
    and sees all mankind;
14 from his dwelling place he watches
    all who live on earth—
15 he who forms the hearts of all,
    who considers everything they do.
16 No king is saved by the size of his army;
    no warrior escapes by his great strength.
17 A horse is a vain hope for deliverance;
    despite all its great strength it cannot save.
18 But the eyes of the Lord are on those who fear him,
    on those whose hope is in his unfailing love,
19 to deliver them from death
    and keep them alive in famine.
20 We wait in hope for the Lord;
    he is our help and our shield.
21 In him our hearts rejoice,
    for we trust in his holy name.
22 May your unfailing love be with us, Lord,
    even as we put our hope in you.
New International Version (NIV)

Wednesday, February 6, 2019

SOTU, While President Trump Knocked It Outta the Park, the Esquisite First Lady Cheered Him On

LOVE THE BUTTONS ON THAT PERFECT BLACK DRESS AND EVERYTHING ABOUT MELANIA. What a real woman looks and acts like if she's married to the most powerful man in the world.

Sunday, February 3, 2019

Making Football Great Again--- With Belichick and Brady Wowing Again!

AMERICA AT ITS BEST.  What started terribly slowly, ended with a Patriots touchdown and field goal.  Super Bowl stuck to football.  Maroon 5 stuck to music though I did not like the lead singer's look.  All as it should be.

And the Alexa ad with Harrison Ford's Boston terrier ordering dog food and gravy was a complete hilarious winner.

Sunday, Wall Building in the Old Testament---Nehemiah Rebuilds the Wall In Jerusalem




THE BOOK OF NEHEMIAH opens in the Persian city of Susa in the year 444 BC. Later that year, Nehemiah traveled to Israel, leading the third of three returns by the Jewish people following their seventy years of exile in Babylon. (The previous chapter on Ezra describes the earlier two returns.)

Most of the book centers on events in Jerusalem. The narrative concludes around the year 430 BC, and scholars believe the book was written shortly thereafter. Nehemiah is the last historical book of the Old Testament. Although the book of Esther appears after Nehemiah in the canon, the events in Esther occurred in the time period between Ezra 6 and 7, between the first and second returns of the people to Israel. The prophet Malachi was a contemporary of Nehemiah.

Why is Nehemiah so important?

Nehemiah was a layman, not a priest like Ezra nor a prophet like Malachi. He served the Persian king in a secular position before leading a group of Jews to Jerusalem in order to rebuild the city walls. “Nehemiah’s expertise in the king’s court equipped him adequately for the political and physical reconstruction necessary for the remnant to survive."1 Under Nehemiah’s leadership, the Jews withstood opposition and came together to accomplish their goal. Nehemiah led by example, giving up a respected position in a palace for hard labor in a politically insignificant district. He partnered with Ezra, who also appears in this book, to solidify the political and spiritual foundations of the people. Nehemiah’s humility before God (see his moving intercessory prayers in chapters 1 and 9) provided an example for the people.

He did not claim glory for himself but always gave God the credit for his successes. What's the big idea? Nehemiah recorded the reconstruction of the wall of Jerusalem, Judah’s capital city. Together, he and Ezra, who led the spiritual revival of the people, directed the political and religious restoration of the Jews in their homeland after the Babylonian captivity. Nehemiah’s life provides a fine study on leadership. He overcame opposition from outsiders as well as internal turmoil. He exercised his administrative skills in his strategy to use half the people for building while the other half kept watch for the Samaritans who, under Sanballat, threatened attack (Nehemiah 4–7).

As governor, Nehemiah negotiated peace among the Jews who were unhappy with Persian taxes. He exhibited a steadfast determination to complete his goals. Accomplishing those goals resulted in a people encouraged, renewed, and excited about their future.

How do I apply this?

The book of Nehemiah shows us the kind of significant impact one individual can have on a nation. Nehemiah served in secular offices, using his position to bring back to the Jews order, stability, and proper focus on God. God uses all manner of people in all manner of places doing all manner of work. Do you feel you must be “in ministry” in order to serve God? Be encouraged; He is not limited by your vocation. In fact, God has placed you where you are for a purpose. Have this attitude about your work: “Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father” (Colossians 3:17).