Tag Archive | Deception

Spiritual Blindness:

John 9:1-6  Jesus Heals a Man Born Blind

As he went along, he saw a man blind from birth. His disciples asked him, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?”

“Neither this man nor his parents sinned,” said Jesus, “but this happened so that the works of God might be displayed in him. As long as it is day, we must do the works of him who sent me. Night is coming, when no one can work. While I am in the world, I am the light of the world.”

After saying this, he spit on the ground, made some mud with the saliva, and put it on the man’s eyes. “Go,” he told him, “wash in the Pool of Siloam” (this word means “Sent”). So the man went and washed, and came home seeing.

This is such a great story of Jesus healing a man born blind.

First, Jesus sees the man.

Then, we are presented with the disciple’s question of whether this man was born blind because of his parents, or because of his own sins?

I love the answer Jesus gives, that this man has been born blind so that the works of God might be displayed in him.

In an unconventional way, the blind man is healed. Jesus spits on the ground, makes mud with His saliva, and puts it on the man’s eyes! Jesus tells the man to go and wash in the Pool of Siloam.

The man does as Jesus says, and goes home seeing!

This isn’t the end of the story, because it also happened on the Sabbath. When religious leaders find out that the man who was blind from birth can see, they are angry. They go as far as to say that Jesus can’t be from God, because He didn’t keep the Sabbath.

The religious leaders exasperate the man who was healed, and interrogate him, and hurl insults at him. Finally the man who can now see, sensationally refutes the Pharisees.

The man answered, “Now that is remarkable! You don’t know where he comes from, yet he opened my eyes. 31 We know that God does not listen to sinners. He listens to the godly person who does his will. 32 Nobody has ever heard of opening the eyes of a man born blind. 33 If this man were not from God, he could do nothing.”

34 To this they replied, “You were steeped in sin at birth; how dare you lecture us!” And they threw him out.

I am reminded of “Spiritual Blindness”. — Many people refuse to believe, though they have been presented with the evidence.

I pray, Dear God, that we would be men and women of faith, and that we would shine with Your light in this world. Help us to see the needs of others, and help them. I am so thankful for Your willingness to die on our behalf. You died for us while we were yet sinners, and spiritually blind. Open our eyes to the truth, and keep us from being deceived. I pray for workers for the harvest. In the name of Jesus. Amen.

-Dawn-

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Freedom and Life in Christ:

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        As you know, it was because of an illness that I first preached the gospel to you, (Galatians 4:13)

Paul, when he was ill, was welcomed by the Galatians. They were eager to hear about salvation. Paul says that the Galatians loved him, and they would have given him anything, if he had asked.

Later, eloquent men tried to persuade the Galatians to follow the laws of the Jewish people.

Paul wanted the Galatians to know that they were free in Christ, and were no longer under the law of slavery.

He gave the figurative example of Hagar and Sarah.

One woman had a child, born of flesh, and he was born into the slavery of sin. Hagar represented Jerusalem with all its laws and religion.

The other child was born of Sarah, and was born of the divine will of God. He was born into freedom. He was born from above, — the new Jerusalem from heaven.

As Christians, we are children of a divine promise. We are born, not of flesh, but by the will of God.

In Christ, we have freedom, liberty, and everlasting life. We have forgiveness of sins, and the power of God in us.

Dear God, thank you for this great gift of salvation. None of us can follow the law without sinning. You gave the ultimate sacrifice for our sins, –Your precious Son. Then, You raised Him up in power and glory and honor. Just because we believe in Jesus, You allowed us to be Your dear children, heirs with Christ. That is such amazing grace! I gladly accept the freedom that You offer through Christ. Help me to not be deceived by false teaching and false religion. Thank You! Amen.

-Dawn

Deception, Even From a Prophet:

There is a story in Kings, Chapter 13, that has an interesting lesson in it.

… “Thus says the LORD: ‘Because you have disobeyed the word of the LORD, and have not kept the commandment which the LORD your God commanded you, but you came back, ate bread and drank water in the place of which the LORD said to you, “Eat no bread and drink no water.” your corpse shall not come to the tomb of your fathers.'” Kings 13:21,22

A man of God went to Bethel from Judah, and pronounced judgment on Jeroboam while he stood at an altar burning incense. Jeroboam was a king of Judah who led the people astray from God, and made priests of whoever he wanted to. He set up altars and worshiped other gods, and got the people to follow along.

This man of God who pronounced judgment on the king, was told by God not to eat or drink in this town, or return by the way in which he came.

Another prophet heard about this man’s acts of judgment, and about his mission from God. This prophet, for some reason, lied to the man of God, and told him that an angel spoke to him, telling him to bring this man of God to his house, to give him something to eat and drink.

The man of God, believed the prophet, and ate and drank at his house. While he was eating, the LORD came to the prophet who lied, and had him tell the man of God that he disobeyed the word of the LORD, and that his corpse would not be buried in the tomb of his fathers.

The man of God was attacked by a lion while riding his donkey after he left the prophet’s home.

He was buried in the prophet’s tomb who lied to him. His name is not mentioned in the Bible. However, the prophet said that everything the man of God said would be fulfilled concerning Jeroboam.

The lesson here is that when God tells us something, we shouldn’t take someone else’s word on what they say God told them. We should let nothing turn us from the truth of God’s word.

We need to be careful what we hear, and who we listen to.

One other thing I learned from this story is that God’s word prevails.

Finally, when a nation has an evil king such as Jeroboam, the whole nation suffers.

Another prophet in Chapter 14 is quoted as saying “but you have done more evil than all who were before you, for you have gone and made for yourself other gods and molded images to provoke Me to anger and have cast Me behind your back”—

“Therefore behold! I will bring disaster on the house of Jeroboam every male in Israel, bond and fee; I will take away the remnant of the house of Jeroboam, as one takes away refuse until it is all gone.” Kings 14:9,10

Just as we are blessed when we have Godly leadership, we are also in danger of disaster when our leadership is ungodly.

Dear God, sometimes it is easy to be deceived. Even good people might tell us the wrong thing to do. Help us to stay true to You, seeking Your council, and following You wholeheartedly. Let nothing separate us from Your love.Keep us from being deceived. In the name of Jesus, Amen.

-Dawn-

Exercising in God’s Word:

32 Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh: 33 so likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors. 34 Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled.35 Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away. (Matthew 24:32-35)

Yesterday, I wrote of a fig tree that had leaves and no fruit, and the Lord spoke to it, and it withered and died.

This verse is about a fig tree too. When it puts forth leaves, we know it is nearing summer.  Jesus tells us that when we see these signs: wars, rumors of wars, religious deception, famines, pestilences, earthquakes, and people being put to death for their faith, people hating and betraying each other, to know that the end is drawing near–even at the doors.

I woke up today with that thought in my mind,–that the Lord was coming very soon.

I also had a funny vision of a gym, or weight room, where I was ‘building’ up my faith.

I thought of Genesis, and to believe that God created the heaven and the earth — that was my warm-up exercise.

I thought of the different books of the Bible, and their main points.

I went into the harder exercises: the laws, the prophecies, the virgin birth of my Savior, Jesus, and His parables and teaching.

The weightier substance– the law of love — heavy lifting!

More exercises, on standing firm, putting on the whole armor, and being able to extinguish the fiery darts of my enemy.

Finally,the cardiac workout, and the book of Revelation, where the end of the race is close, and it is just a little ways more to the finish line. — To give everything I have to make it to the finish line.

Listen to the progression of the apostle Paul in this verse:

And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ– to the glory and praise of God. Philippians 1:9-11

In the Duck Commander devotional, Jase describes the progression.
“It starts with love, moves to knowledge, to insight, to discernment, to purity, to fruit, to glory, to God”  He said there is no step-skipping if you want to bring glory to God.– “It all begins with love for God and continues with love for others and then progresses to a place of maturity and praise to our Lord.”

Thank You, Lord, for salvation, wisdom, understanding, grace, and so much more. As we draw near to You, draw near to us. Thank You for these exercises in faith and love. Help us to work-out every day, to put Your word in our hearts and minds. Protect us, and keep us in Your care, build us up in a most Holy faith until Your return. Amen

-Dawn-

The Truth in God’s Word

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I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes: first to the Jew, then to the Gentile. Romans 1:16

God’s truth is what changes lives.

Jesus exposed sin, healed and forgave the sinner, then told them to go and sin no more.

Sin enslaves us, and it dishonors God. When we say we love Him, we want to respect Him. When we do sin, we can confess our sins, and He will forgive us.

The Bible tells us what sin is, and it tells us how to be redeemed and saved from sin and unrighteousness.

Love is a big part of being a Christian, but so is hating evil, and clinging to what is good.

We are warned throughout the Bible that we need to be on guard so that we are not deceived. The first sin was Satan deceiving Eve. The Devil also tried to deceive Jesus, but Jesus was able to combat the lies of Satan with the truth of God. Jesus was victorious!

Paul reminds us what the Bible is good for:

2 Timothy 3: 15 and how from infancy you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. 16 All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, 17 so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.

And then John reminds us to be careful,

Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world. 1 John 4:1

We do need to judge what is right and good. If we are deceived, the results can be devastating.

We need to protect our faith in Christ. Many false teachers are trying to deceive Christians.

Watch and pray, and persevere! Read God’s Word, so that You know the truth.

Thank You, God, for the truth of Your words. They bring life, full abundant life to those who choose to obey them. Forgive us for our sins, and lead us in the way everlasting! Keep us from evil. Help the truth to prevail. Make us strong in the Lord, and in Your mighty power. Please shorten these days of deception, and put Your word in our hearts and minds. Amen.

-Dawn-

Writing 101: To Whom it May Concern

The writing prompt is:

Pick up the nearest book and flip to page 29. What’s the first word that jumps off the page? Use this word as your springboard for inspiration. If you need a boost, Google the word and see what images appear, and then go from there. 

Today’s twist: write the post in the form of a letter.

This is not part of my daily devotions. I am taking a writing class with prompts, trying to gain some better writing skills, and go beyond my comfort zone in writing. I’m not good at writing letters, so this is a challenge.


Dear Jacob,

You had unyielding faith and determination when you wrestled against that angel all night.

That evening, you were by yourself thinking about your brother, and how you had wronged him. He was coming toward you with four-hundred men. Was he coming to hurt you or greet you?  I bet that was a frightening thought! You weren’t about to let the angel go until he blessed you. The angel even struck your hip socket, and threw it out of place, but still you hung on, hoping for that blessing.

You succeeded! That angel blessed you by changing your name to Israel. He said you were like a prince that had power with God and men, and that you prevailed.

I would love to hear an angels voice, but I am glad I didn’t have to physically fight with a heavenly entity.

You know, I have a hard time wrapping my brain around this concept. I had to do some research. The best explanation I found was that you were wrestling against the fear of adversity with your brother. You were worried about this sin hanging over your head. You really deceived Esau, your brother, and wanted God’s blessing and forgiveness for past mistakes. You weren’t about to let go of God’s mercy, and you wanted affirmation of that. God gave it to you.

You could now go on in faith, knowing that you were part of God’s big plan. He wanted to make a nation out of your descendants. You stole the birthright that really belonged to Esau, but now you fought for it, for your place with God.

I wonder if you finally had a sense of belonging to God? Maybe you had a sense that you got God’s blessing the hard way, not by stealing it from your brother anymore. No more weight of that sin from your youth hanging over your head.

When you met your brother, you did so graciously, sending gifts ahead of yourself. You sent messengers to Esau, explaining where you had been, and what your intentions were. I know you were apprehensive about what would happen. I am sure you were wondering if you could win the mercy and forgiveness of Esau too?

Yes, you did! Your brother ran to you when he saw you! He wept, and kissed you. He had forgiven the sins of your youth! Esau didn’t want your rich gifts, he just wanted his brother back. You urged him to take those gifts because you had been so blessed by God, and wanted him to receive some of those blessings too. How wonderful redemption is!

This meeting with your brother, and the incident with the angel were life-changing events. You handled them so well. I’m glad you were faithful and that you determined to do the right thing. You made amends with your past, giving you the ability to move forward with God’s purpose.

What a life you’ve lived!

May God’s blessings be upon his people, and may we seek His mercy and love always!

Sincerely,

Dawn