Nuggets – God’s Tear Bottle

“Thou tellest my wanderings: put thou my tears into thy bottle: are they not in thy book?” (Psalm 56:8)

This is a remarkable insight into the tender heart of our heavenly Father. He has a tear bottle—in fact, perhaps a tear bottle for each of His wandering children.

Ancient “tear bottles” (or wineskins) have actually been excavated by archaeologists in Israel. These vessels were used to catch and preserve the owner’s tears during times of grief or extreme pressure. This psalm was actually written by David when he was being pursued by Saul on one side and surrounded by Philistines in the city of Goliath on the other. David apparently not only had his own tear bottle but also believed that God somehow was also storing up David’s personal tears in His own heavenly bottle of tears.

There is a touching story in the earthly ministry of Jesus that provides another example: “Behold, a woman in the city, which was a sinner, when she knew that Jesus sat at meat in the Pharisee’s house, brought an alabaster box of ointment, And stood at his feet behind him weeping, and began to wash his feet with tears,…and anointed them with the ointment” (Luke 7:37-38).

The ointment was obviously not the same as the tears but followed the washing by tears. Some scholars think these tears came from her bottle, which was emptied on His feet and used to wash them. Others think that those tear bottles that have been found actually contained the collected tears of mourners at a burial site.

In any case, God does know all our wanderings and sorrows and all our tears, and stores them up somewhere. Perhaps it is also a metaphor for His “book of remembrance,” which is being “written before him for them that feared the Lord, and that thought upon his name” (Malachi 3:16). HMM

From Days of Praise

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FILIPINO EXPAT ENCOURAGEMENT 125

Our missions strategy is reaching children and parents for Jesus through their children in Nepal, Pakistan and Myanmar. We provide free tuition and lunch and help the poor kids with their schoolwork where their parents are unschooled or they are too poor to afford tuition services. We thank God for the many. parents (a few in picture below) of tuition centre children who accepted Jesus post the Nepal covid lock-down.

Do you know children you can teach a song about God’s love, tell a Bible story of Jesus’ miracles or have fun with Bible quizzes and competition or pray with? All children need the Lord and if we teach them of the love of Jesus while they are young, they will not depart from it when they are old. Proverbs 22:6 Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.

I have testimonies of children influencing their parents and grandparents and their guardians and minders for Christ. Yes the pure joy and love of children who belong to God can be spread to family and friends not only in daily prayer requests for the salvation of unsaved relatives but also simple faith in our omnipotent, omnipresent and omniscient God in times of crises when they call on the name of Jesus. There is deliverance, salvation, jealing, protection and response from our loving heavenly Father to a child’s innocent and full of faitih call for help. Yes it is true and the internet is full of testimonies of answers to prayers of children.

Be encouraged to share the gospel with children. They are your greatest blessings and the Lord’s purest instruments of grace.

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Nuggets – Defense of the Gospel

“Even as it is meet for me to think this of you all, because I have you in my heart; inasmuch as both in my bonds, and in the defence and confirmation of the gospel, ye all are partakers of my grace.” (Philippians 1:7)

Writing from prison in Rome some 10 years after he helped found the church in Philippi, Paul still felt such a bond with those believers that he insisted they “partake” with him in his “defence and confirmation” of the gospel ministry.

The key words here are “defense” (Greek apologia) and “confirmation” (Greek bebaiosis). Both words are not common in the New Testament text. Together, they describe a mission attitude that should anchor our approach to ministry.

Apologia, in its various forms, is most often translated “answer.” Peter used this term in a passage that urged Christians to be “ready always to give an answer [as in, an answer that is logically sufficient] to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you” (1 Peter 3:15). Paul used apologia twice to the Philippian church; both times stressed the “defence of the gospel” (Philippians 1:17).

Bebaiosis and its associated terms convey the meaning of firmness or having been established. Paul encouraged the Colossian church to be “rooted and built up in [Christ], and stablished in the faith” (Colossians 2:7). Peter tells us to “make [our] calling and election sure [same word, bebaiosis]” (2 Peter 1:10).

Thus, our witness and declaration of “the power of God unto salvation” (Romans 1:16) must be “with logic” (apologia) to defend the precious truth and with an eye to “establish” (bebaiosis) that truth in the mind and heart of those newly converted. The gospel tells who Christ is (the Creator, the incarnate Word, and coming King) as well as what He did on Calvary. HMM III

From Days of Praise

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Big Tech–Counterfeit Comforter

Immortality Road

Big Brother is watching you and me. It is an old concept, but never more true. He knows our thoughts and desires, and he is well aware of our political, religious, educational, and economic inclinations.

Of course, we speak of Big Tech, who sprawls over the entire earth, digitally scratching the itch that humans have. That itch is to feel important and needed and appreciated, and to know that they belong.

But mankind does not know that Big Tech’s fingers scratch with silent talons, talons that tear into the subconscious minds of the vulnerable.  Through quiet machinations of the human psyche, Big Tech has become the provider of comfort.

It has almost entirely replaced the Hebrew God as mankind’s go-to savior. Feeling lonely? Turn on your electronic device. Go where you want to go. Listen to whom you want to hear. Bored? Same thing. In fact, Big Tech provides your…

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Nuhggets – Promised Performance

Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ.” (Philippians 1:6)

Our Lord gave this powerful promise to perform the good work that He began at and with the church at Philippi (the “you” is plural in the Greek text).

It is an earthly, temporal promise; that is, the promise is to “perfect” the good work “until the day of Jesus Christ.” The church at Philippi closed its earthly doors centuries ago. Something much more than mere continuation is pledged.

Surely our Lord has in mind His assurance that “the gates of hell” would not prevail against His church (Matthew 16:18), but there were some churches to whom Christ spoke who were in danger of losing their “candlestick” or church-hood (Revelation 2:4; 3:16). What, then, can we be assured of by this marvelous promise?

Perhaps the basic “good work” that our Lord refers to is seen in the list of commendations given to the seven churches in the letters dictated to John at the beginning of Revelation. All except Laodicea had some strengths. Even troubled Sardis had a “few names” not yet sullied and “things which remain” that were still good and worth preserving (Revelation 3:1-4). Our Lord knows all His works “from the beginning” (Acts 15:18) and sees the eternal fruit of our ministry that ripples long beyond our short earthly life (Revelation 14:13).

There is also the mystery of our being “builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit” (Ephesians 2:22)—a “spiritual house” that produces “spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ” (1 Peter 2:5). All of this, perhaps, is what our Lord had in mind when He promised to perform the good work He had started in Philippi. HMM III

From Days of Praise

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FILIPINO EXPAT ENCOURAGEMENT 124

How long has it been?

How long has it been since you prayed? for self? for someone? You can be the block to someone going to hell.

If you have the gospel and have not shared with someone, their blood can be upon your hands.

It is a command of the Lord Mark 16:15 ESV And he said to them, “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation.

Psalm 96:3 ESV Declare his glory among the nations, his marvelous works among all the peoples!

Are you ashamed of the gospel of Christ? Romans 1:16 ESV For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes,

Have you started then stopped? Galatians 6:9 ESV And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.

Get the power of the Holy Spirit Acts 1:8 ESV But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”

Do it 1 Peter 3:15 ESV But in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect,

How will they hear? Romans 10:13-14 ESV For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching?

Do not be judged for being silent John 12:48 ESV The one who rejects me and does not receive my words has a judge; the word that I have spoken will judge him on the last day.

It is sesrious that we be obedient to His command . 1 John 2:4 ESV Whoever says “I know him” but does not keep his commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him,

Let us be inoocent of the blood of the lost by obedience to the command of the Lord.

Acts 20:26-27 ESV Therefore I testify to you this day that I am innocent of the blood of all of you, for I did not shrink from declaring to you the whole counsel of God.

Lord, please open my mouth and fill it with Your loving words and life. Amen.

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Nuggets – The Limited Knowledge of Jesus

“But of that day and that hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father.” (Mark 13:32)

This verse has always been difficult to understand. If Jesus was God, how could He be ignorant of the time of His second coming? Indeed He was, and is, God, but He also was, and is, man. This is a part of the mystery of the divine/human nature of Christ. In the gospel record, we see frequent evidences of His humanity (He grew weary, for example, and suffered pain), but also many evidences of deity (His virgin birth, His resurrection and ascension, as well as His perfect words and deeds).

He had been in glory with the Father from eternity (John 17:24), but when He became man, “in all things it behoved him to be made like unto his brethren” (Hebrews 2:17), except for sin. As a child, He “increased in wisdom and stature” like any other human (Luke 2:52). Through diligent study (as a man), He acquired great wisdom in the Scriptures and the plan of God. After His baptism and the acknowledgment from heaven of His divine Sonship (e.g., Matthew 3:16-17), He increasingly manifested various aspects of His deity, but He still remained fully human.

With respect to the time of the end, this depends in some degree on human activity. For example, He said that “the gospel must first be published among all nations” (Mark 13:10), and only God the Father could foresee just when men will have accomplished this. Although the glorified Son presumably now shares this knowledge, in His self-imposed human limitations He did not.

In no way does this compromise His deity. In our own finite humanity, we cannot comprehend fully the mystery of the divine/human nature of Christ, but He has given us more than sufficient reason to believe His Word! HMM

From Days of Praise

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FILIPINO EXPAT ENCOURAGEMENT 123

Pride

Pride is self awareness and discernment, knowing who you are and acting on that knowledge responsibily or irresponsibly.

Do you have the ultimate pride? Psalm 10:4 ESV In the pride of his face the wicked does not seek him; all his thoughts are, “There is no God.

Are you a discerning person? Romans 12:16 ESV Live in harmony with one another. Do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly. Never be wise in your own sight.

Worldly pride will not last .1 John 2:16 ESV For all that is in the world—the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride in possessions—is not from the Father but is from the world.

Pride is evident in your eyes and heart . Proverbs 21:4 ESV Haughty eyes and a proud heart, the lamp of the wicked, are sin.

Pride is in your mouth too. Psalm 59:12 ESV For the sin of their mouths, the words of their lips, let them be trapped in their pride. For the cursing and lies that they utter,

Listen to what the Lord says .Jeremiah 9:23 ESV Thus says the Lord: “Let not the wise man boast in his wisdom, let not the mighty man boast in his might, let not the rich man boast in his riches,

He has a special word for the young. 1 Peter 5:5 ESV Likewise, you who are younger, be subject to the elders. Clothe yourselves, all of you, with humility toward one another, for “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.”

Enjoy the grace of God with humility!

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Nuggets – Thy Power to Save

“O sing unto the LORD a new song; for he hath done marvelous things: his right hand, and his holy arm, hath gotten him the victory.” (Psalm 98:1)

Throughout Scripture God accomplished glorious things, and His people responded in song. The final verse of “There Is a Fountain” reminds us that our song will last for eternity.

Then in a nobler, sweeter song,
I’ll sing thy power to save,
When this poor lisping, stammering tongue
Lies silent in the grave.

There will come a time when redeemed individuals will amass around the throne of God and His Son, our Redeemer, and sing a mighty song of praise to Him for salvation: “And they sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation” (Revelation 5:9). The Creator had bought creation back with His own blood.

The just and holy Creator was rejected by His creation and rightly pronounced the penalty of death. Yet, He entered the created world to live a sinless life so that He could die as a proper substitute for all, and then rose from the grave in final victory over sin, offering us eternal life.

Our inability in this life to fully understand all that has transpired or even phrase a proper testimony will be replaced with an accurate assessment. We will gather there with all the saints to sing His praise: “Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honor and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created” (Revelation 4:11). The great Creator became our Redeemer and our everlasting King! JDM

From Days of Praise

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Nuggets – Thy Precious Blood

“In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins:…And, having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself; by him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven.” (Colossians 1:14, 20)

John introduced Jesus to the world at His baptism by saying, “Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world” (John 1:29). He was known prophetically as a lamb even before then. “He is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth” (Isaiah 53:7). He fulfilled the lamb role in His sacrificial death for the sins of mankind: “With the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot” (1 Peter 1:19). The third verse of “There Is a Fountain” continues that picture.

Dear dying Lamb, thy precious blood
Shall never lose its power
Till all the ransomed church of God
Be saved, to sin no more.

The precious Christology passage of Colossians 1:13-20 identifies Christ as Creator, Redeemer, and King. As Creator, His redemptive work included the ransom of His creation, lost and shackled in sin. There will come the time when all of redeemed mankind will gather around His throne “saying with a loud voice, Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing” (Revelation 5:12).

They will be joined by all in creation to sing His praises. “And they sing the song of Moses the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying, Great and marvelous are thy works, Lord God Almighty; just and true are thy ways, thou King of saints” (Revelation 15:3). JDM

From Days of Praise

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