Nuggets – Not Giving, but Sowing

Not Giving, but Sowing
“But this I say, He which soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he which soweth bountifully, shall reap also bountifully.” (2 Corinthians 9:6

As John Calvin pointed out long ago in expounding this key passage, “We are not giving, but sowing” when we contribute of our financial means to the work of the Lord, for it miraculously is considered by the Lord of the harvest as seed sown in the soil of the hearts of men.

And it is a rule of the harvest that, other things being equal, the more seed planted, the more harvested. He who is deficient with his seed must necessarily anticipate a meager crop.

Of course, a bountiful harvest presupposes not only an abundance of seed, but also good soil, properly prepared, watered, and cultivated. It is no good simply to give money to anyone or any cause, any more than it is good simply to throw a seed on a rocky slope or city street or weed-infested yard. One is responsible to give where God’s Word is honored—not just to give, but to give responsibly.

Furthermore, even though an abundant harvest is promised, the motive in giving is also vital. The harvest is souls—not gold! “God loveth a cheerful giver”—not a conditional giver (v. 7). “He that giveth, let him do it with simplicity” (Romans 12:8). Often God does bring financial blessing to a Christian who has proved faithful in the grace of giving, but this is so he can give still more and thus lay up still more treasure in heaven. “For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required” (Luke 12:48). “Therefore,” as Paul said, “. . . see that ye abound in this grace also” (2 Corinthians 8:7).

And as we give, we must never forget that Christ has given more: “For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor” (2 Corinthians 8:9). HMM

From the Institute for Creation Research

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Nuggets – His Amazing Grace

His Amazing Grace
“Paul, and Silvanus, and Timotheus, unto the church of the Thessalonians which is in God the Father and in the Lord Jesus Christ: Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ.” (1 Thessalonians 1:1

These are the very first of Paul’s divinely inspired words, and in this first of his inspired greetings, he set a pattern which he would later follow in all his other epistles. He would always begin with an implicit prayer that both grace and peace, sent from God the Father and His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, would be received and experienced by the ones to whom he was writing. Furthermore, “grace” always precedes “peace” in these salutations, because one must receive the grace of God before he can experience the peace of God.

By this strong emphasis on grace—preceding anything else he might write to the church or its pastor—he confirmed the great importance of God’s loving grace. Grace is the first essential in salvation and is the continuing vital essential in Christian living. The Thessalonians had already been saved by grace through faith, but now the grace of God their Father and Jesus Christ their Lord must also be lived out in their personal behavior, especially in their dealings with others, to whom God would also manifest His grace through them.

Paul also closed every epistle with a prayer that the grace of the Lord Jesus would continue to be with all who read them. Finally, the last of his inspired words (written while he was in prison) to his young disciple Timothy were: “The Lord Jesus Christ be with thy spirit. Grace be with you. Amen” (2 Timothy 4:22).

Each true Christian life must begin, continue, and end in the sustaining grace of the Savior. Indeed, the very last revealed words of God Himself in the Holy Scriptures are: “The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen” (Revelation 22:21). Thank God for His amazing grace. HMM

From the Institute for Creation Reserch

 

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Nuggets – The Peace of the God of Peace

The Peace of the God of Peace
“And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:7

For generations, most of the world’s people have longed for peace, but the world continues to be at war. Evolutionists attribute this to ages of violent evolutionary struggle; the Bible attributes it to sin!

But it is wonderfully possible to have real personal peace even in a world at war. This is what the Bible calls “the peace of God,” and it surpasses all human understanding because it is provided by the God of peace, for the writer continues, “The God of peace shall be with you” (v. 9).

The God of peace! There are some wonderful promises associated with this beautiful name of our Lord. For example: “The God of peace shall bruise Satan under your feet shortly” (Romans 16:20). Also: “The very God of peace sanctify you wholly” (1 Thessalonians 5:23).

The provision of God’s perfect peace (Isaiah 26:3) is specifically invoked in 2 Thessalonians 3:16: “Now the Lord of peace himself give you peace always by all means.” Perhaps the greatest promise of all is implied in the concluding prayer of the book of Hebrews: “Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, Make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is well pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ” (Hebrews 13:20-21).

There is only one other reference to the peace of God: “And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful” (Colossians 3:15). The peace of God, from the God of peace, can rule in our hearts if we let it rule in our hearts. Then, as promised in our text, it will also keep our hearts!

From the Institute for Creation Research

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Nuggets –

Proofs of the Pudding
“If ye know that he is righteous, ye know that every one that doeth righteousness is born of him.” (1 John 2:29

The little book of 1 John provides a treasure trove of “proofs” that demonstrate the reality of the invisible spiritual change brought about by the new birth.

There are two emphases: proofs based on personal experience and proofs based on intellectual awareness.

Here is a short list of proofs we experience:

• Obedience to God’s commandments (1 John 2:2-5)
• Experience of God in our lives (1 John 2:13-14)
• Obvious “antichrists” in the world (1 John 2:18)
• Worldly ignorance of Christianity (1 John 3:1)
• Sinners’ ignorance of righteousness (1 John 3:6)
• Our love for fellow Christians (1 John 3:16-18)
• The indwelling Holy Spirit (1 John 4:13)
• Our love for godly behavior (1 John 5:2)


Here are proofs we have intellectual confidence in:

• The Holy Spirit’s anointing (1 John 2:20)
• The holiness of Jesus Christ (1 John 2:29)
• The Father’s love for us (1 John 3:1)
• Our eternal bodies to be like Christ (1 John 3:2)
• Hating a brother is like murder (1 John 3:15)
• Scripture’s message of eternal life (1 John 5:13)
• Assurance that we belong to God (1 John 5:19)
• Assurance that Christ has come (1 John 5:20)


These evidences are primarily for the believer—that is, they are intended to assure the believer’s heart and mind of his security in Christ. John’s list is not intended to be complete but only to focus our thoughts on the obvious. When you count your blessings, remember these. HMM III

From the Istitute for Creation Research

 

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IS COL. SANDERS REAL?

The unreal sometimes happens..

Grandpa's Stories for Young Boys

Eli awakened this Saturday morning much later than usual. His mom, concerned about this, called at his door; “You up son? I’m waiting on you for breakfast.

He returned; “I’ll be there in a minute… Shaking his head that he should be caught up in that night’s dream for so long. At the table Amber asked; “Sleep O.K. ? I was about to give up on you.”

In between gulps of orange juice, he told of a marathon dream of fishing on the Columbia. And, this had the makings of a very long story that had totally captured his attention.

He began; ” You know that book that Uncle Brett gave me on fishing? You remember he was going to take me first day of the season…. Well, we went in my dream. You know he has that old motorboat that he keeps at his houseboat, that he takes out…

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The Source of Blessing

Pray n plan. All good things come from the Father above. Amen.

Bible in a Year Blog

imageWhere do you find your wealth?

Jacob is famous for robbing his brother of his birthright. After covering himself with hair and masquerading as Esau before his blind father, Jacob received the prized blessing. By his own effort he plotted and acted and achieved his goal, but what did it gain him? His brother’s hatred, the threat of death, and the loss of his home. Jacob ran away empty handed.

Twenty years passed before Jacob returned to his homeland, and look at the difference those twenty years made. Jacob ran away with nothing, but he returned a rich man. To appease his brother, he gave him a gift of a part of his wealth.

 So he lodged there that night, and took from what he had with him a present for his brother Esau,  two hundred she-goats and twenty he-goats, two hundred ewes and twenty rams, thirty…

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Cultivating Contentment

Christmas is packed away once again and it’s time for us to turn our attention to a new year. But as soon as the last scrap of wrapping paper is swept up and tossed away, it seems as if the joy of the season goes with it too. I mean, haven’t you already thought about a few things that you wish were different already? Maybe you want to lose a few pounds, do a face lift on that old room, replace a vehicle, or add some new pieces to a spring wardrobe.

Of course, there’s nothing wrong with making changes. In fact, as believers in Jesus, we always need to moving forward in growth and maturity, but we also need to guard against feeding the seemingly insatiable desire within us all for more and more. That longing for new things, new experiences and new relationships extends deeper than an attitude of materialism, and beyond the feelings of boredom; It’s a perennial weed that springs up in the fertile soil of discontentment.

A quick look through the Bible reveals that this is not a new problem. All through the scripture people struggled to be content with what they had. Eve wanted a better position (to be like God) (Gen 3:1-6). Achan wanted more stuff (Jos. 7:20-21). David wanted a forbidden relationship (2 Sam. 11:1-2). And the prodigal son wanted to control his own choices. (Lk. 15:11-12)

The Apostle Paul gave us the remedy for discontentment in Philippians 4:11-13. He wrote, “…I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through Him who gives me strength.”

While we’d all like to wash away our impatient desires with a whispered prayer, the reality is that contentment is a battle that is won daily.  So, as you move into 2019, keep these thoughts in mind…

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Nuggets – The Penalty of Unbelief

The Penalty of Unbelief
“I will therefore put you in remembrance, though ye once knew this, how that the Lord, having saved the people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed them that believed not.” (Jude 1:5

This is the first example Jude provides of those who refused to respond to God’s leading and gracious provision. Israel witnessed stunning miracles, and a few very public judgments, before the 12 spies were sent out to investigate the Promised Land.

For example, the Passover was a wonderful, fearful event. God showed His hand both in salvation of those who obeyed and in swift judgment on those who refused.

Israel’s exodus from Egypt was unique. Not only did God enrich the nation in one day but demonstrated His awesome power at the parting of the Red Sea and the destruction of Pharaoh’s army. Everyone in Israel observed this. They all experienced God’s power firsthand.

On the way to Mount Sinai, the bitter water of Marah was made sweet for them to drink even after they complained—bitterly. The daily miracle of the manna was given to feed them, and water was provided out of the rock for them to drink. God’s grace and mercy were just about everywhere.

Even after the nation had arrived at the holy mountain and the fearful giving of the Law was accomplished in their sight, Israel rebelled with the celebration of the golden calf. God’s judgment was swift, and thousands died. The nation did not learn their lesson even though they had a revival while giving, building, and dedicating the tabernacle for worship. After all that, Moses sent out the 12 men to “spy out the land.”

When the nation refused to trust God, He condemned everyone 20 and older to die in the wilderness, except for faithful Caleb and Joshua (Numbers 14:29-30). “It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God” (Hebrews 10:31). HMM III

From the Institute for Creation Research

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Nuggets – The Second Remnant

The Second Remnant
“And it shall come to pass in that day, that the Lord shall set his hand again the second time to recover the remnant of his people, which shall be left, from Assyria, and from Egypt, and from Pathros, and from Cush, and from Elam, and from Shinar, and from Hamath, and from the islands of the sea.” (Isaiah 11:11

The great prophet Isaiah lived during the time when the 10 tribes of Israel were being carried into captivity by the Assyrians, and about a hundred years before his own nation of Judah would be carried into exile by the Babylonians. Yet, in one of the most remarkable prophecies of the Bible (Isaiah 44:28–45:6), Isaiah promised that his people would someday return and build Jerusalem and its temple again. Furthermore, he even named the future emperor of Persia (the nation that would succeed Assyria and Babylonia as the dominant world power), calling him Cyrus. This great king fulfilled Isaiah’s prophecy about 175 years after it was given (note Ezra 1:1-4).

But Isaiah not only prophesied this first return from exile, as noted in the key verse above; he foresaw that, in the distant future, God would also “set his hand again the second time to recover the remnant of his people.” The context of this passage is nothing less than the glorious future time of Messiah’s reign over all the earth (Isaiah 11:9-10). The outcasts of Israel and Judah would return home, not only from the nations of the Middle East, which will evidently be active enemies of Israel again in that future day (note that Pathros, Cush, Elam, Shinar, and Hamath were the ancient names of the nations now identified as Upper Egypt, Ethiopia, Iran, Iraq, and Syria, respectively), but even from “the four corners of the earth” (Isaiah 11:12). Isaiah thus predicted an even greater exile and worldwide homecoming long beyond that of the Babylonian captivity. Such information could have come only from God Himself. HMM

From the Institute for Creation Research

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How can God think so Small?

He leads the way in the BIG and the SMALL. Praise God.

Grandpa's Stories for Young Boys

While much of our focus in daily life is spent on the things of “Grand Import” like: Space Exploration, International Trade Agreements, and Political gyrations, and “the”  new book or movie…… what do you suppose God is thinking about?

Once and a while we can get a picture of His daily concerns, if we close our eyes and listen to the smallness going all around us that receives His  attention. Matthew declares; “He knows even when a swallow falls to the ground.”

I know this to be true;

I’m sitting in a chair beside the creek at the Lodge and there came a tiny; Peep-peep-peep, coming from somewhere.

Again, more desperate than before;  Peeeep- peeep-peep! Was it coming from my side of the creek …..or the other?

As I rose, the voice softened and seemed up somewhere in the trees. Immediately as I focused on a nest high up…a huge…

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