Tag Archive | sin

Throw Off Sin:

 Hebrews 12: 1-3:

Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.

We can get so ‘tangled’ up in sin.

I watched a spider through our kitchen window, one evening. It built a magnificent web. It was a huge ‘popcorn’ or ‘chicken’ spider.

Soon, a fly was trapped in the web, and the spider quickly confronted the captive. He began wrapping him up with a continuous web, until the fly was encased, and completely entangled.

Many people are oblivious to ‘webs’. I am sure the fly was not expecting that sticky web to capture him, but it did. It also brought him to a terrible end.

We need to be aware of our enemy, the devil. He is on the hunt, looking for someone to devour! Once trapped in sin, He makes quick work to encase us in it, and entrap us, making it almost impossible to get out of it.

We luckily have a man of action, who cares enough to rescue us from the devil. Jesus is our Savior, our Redeemer, our Rescuer!  He knows what it is like to be surrounded by His enemies. He endured the cross, He endured opposition from sinners. He also conquered all these things, and is an example, and a mentor, that we can fix our eyes on, so that we do not become weary and lose heart.

He knows how to escape the devil’s web, and is willing to help us, and deliver us from it too.

God’s Word is a great weapon against sin. Psalm 119:11, tell us, “Thy word have I hid in my heart, that I might not sin against thee.” 

Know your enemy’s tactics, put on your armor, and put God’s Word in your heart. Don’t become weary, keep your eyes on the prize, and remember what Jesus endured for our sake.

Dear God, I am feeling weary. I pray for your strength and help, and keep me from being deceived. Direct my paths, and keep my mind and heart on You, on the joy that is to come. Forgive me of all my sins, and keep me in Your care. Thank You for giving me victory through Jesus, Amen.

-Dawn-

The Bible, A Time Machine

Matthew 24:35 NIV

Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away.

I was watching a movie with my son about some kids and a time machine. I was just thinking that reading the Bible is like entering a unique time machine.

In the book of Genesis, we go back to the beginning of the creation of this world. We can imagine the darkness, the void in space, and the Spirit of God, hovering, then, the word of God, creating the light and darkness, sun and moon, every living plant, the oceans and seas, the birds of the air, and all living things.

The unspoiled beauty of the earth must have been so magnificent! The Garden of Eden, must have been so perfect.

Then, our time machine brings us to the introduction of sin, man’s disobedience to God. It spoiled and ruined everything. This was not a little sin. It would bring death to God’s beautiful world. The consequences of sin, were that man would now have to work the land for his food, women would have painful childbirth, the serpent would crawl on its belly,They would eventually die. The man and woman had to leave the garden.

Our time machine travels through the hardships of men, kings, and kingdoms. It shows us the horrible consequences of the first sin. We can see man’s attempt to reach a Holy God, with sacrifice, and offerings.God always reveals Himself, eventually, to let mankind know that He has not abandoned them.

Then we are taken through time to Jesus’s birth. He came to take away the sins of the world. He was God’s way of reaching mankind, and fixing the sin problem. He showed us His love and He was willing to die for us on the cross, to redeem us to God, to conquer sin and death!

Then we take a ride to the early church, and how it grew with faithful witnesses of Christ.

Then to Revelation, John’s vision of heaven, and the end times.

The Bible is a book that gives us all the information we need, to live eternally with Jesus, to escape spiritual death, and the way to have a relationship with God. It tells us many things about the past and the present.

I love reading the Bible!

Dear God, thank You for giving us the opportunity to read Your word. The Bible is an amazing book! I am so grateful that we can read about all the things that happened, and that will happen. I pray that You would give many people a desire to read and study Your word. I pray for Your protection and help. I pray for Your strength. In the name of Jesus, Amen

-Dawn-

A Secret Shopper:

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I woke up early, thinking about “Secret Shoppers”.

I was once a “Secret Shopper”. I went around to restaurants and gas stations to see if they were providing good service to their customers.

I checked for cleanliness, quality, customer service, and if fixtures were in working condition. I checked for proper uniforms and dress codes, and gave a report of my findings. (I was judging businesses and employees. It was my job.:)

David, the Psalmist, once asked God to see if there was any wicked way in him, and asked for God to lead him in the way everlasting.

Psalm 139: 23,24:

23 Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts:

24 And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.

It is important for us to examine our lives. How can we pull the sliver out of someone’s eye, when we might have a plank in our own?

Many people say that we are judgmental when we point out sins. I would reply to them that God is judgmental, and He has provided a way out of our sins. But, if we choose to keep sinning, and refuse God’s grace, we are doomed. God has shown us that He is just. He punishes sin, and if we refuse to tell our sisters and brothers their sins, then we are responsible for their punishment too. Pointing out to a person the error of their way can be a loving and kind thing to do.

When I say to a wicked person, ‘You will surely die,’ and you do not warn them or speak out to dissuade them from their evil ways in order to save their life, that wicked person will die for their sin, and I will hold you accountable for their blood. Ezekiel 3:18

Many people do not want advice, but sometimes advice is necessary. There is a Bible verse that tells us to listen to instruction and accept advice, and in the end, you will be wise.

First, it is important to examine our own lives, and get right with God. It is also important that we help unbelievers to see their need for Christ’s salvation. It is also important to expose sin and unrighteousness in the hopes that a person will repent and be saved. Jesus is coming quickly, and He will return to judge the world. There will be wailing and weeping.

Dear God, You have laid some things on my heart. I pray for Your will in my life. Like David asked, please examine me for any wickedness, and lead me in the way everlasting. I know I have plenty of faults and confess that I continue to need Your forgiveness. I want to be a good ambassador for You, and I pray that Your Holy Spirit would guide me in words and actions, to be a witness for You. I know You are returning soon. In Your Name, Jesus, Amen.

-Dawn-

Real Freedom:

Buttercup

Now a slave has no permanent place in the family, but a son belongs to it forever.  So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed. I know that you are Abraham’s descendants. Yet you are looking for a way to kill me,because you have no room for my word. John 8:35-37

Do you know Jesus’s definition of a slave? In verse 34, He says, “Very truly I tell you, everyone who sins is a slave to sin.”

Then He goes on to say that a slave has no permanent place in the family, but a son belongs to it forever.

That is pretty important instruction for a Christian. We have no permanent place in God’s family, unless the Son sets us free. If He sets us free, we are free indeed!!!!

Jesus was speaking to the Jews who said they were descendants of Abraham, and had never been slaves of anyone.

They were religious, and they had the right genealogy, but they didn’t yet have forgiveness of sins through Christ.

Therefore, they were not part of God’s family, and were seeking to kill Jesus, because they had no room for His word.

That is so sad, and I see it today. There are many religions, many ‘good’ people, and there are people with important genealogies, but that won’t make them members of the family of God. Only salvation can do that– the freedom Jesus offers us when He sets us free from sin!

Thank You, God, for taking us out of the bondage of sin, through Jesus. I am so grateful for salvation. I pray for all those who want to know You, that You will draw them to You, and sow Your word in their hearts. I pray the Lord of the harvest, to send workers, that many still would be saved. I know You are coming soon with judgment. I pray for Your mercy and forgiveness, and that You will keep us from being deceived, keep us from temptation, and deliver us from evil. Your will be done, in the wonderful, glorious, beautiful name of Jesus. Amen.

-Dawn-

God’s Conversation with Cain:

Easter-2015-FB-PWG

Then the LORD said to Cain, “Why are you angry? Why is your face downcast?  If you do what is right, will you not be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must rule over it.” Genesis 4:6,7

God spoke to Cain.

His conversation starts with, “Why are you angry?”.

Most of the time, you can tell a person is angry by the look on their face. Sometimes you can see their eyes filled with hate. Others hide behind masks, or look away, so you cannot see their thoughts. So, God asks Cain why his face is downcast? Maybe Cain is having a hard time looking up? He has some evil thoughts. He needs council.

God gives Cain the best advice, and says, “If you do what is right, will you not be accepted?”

Who is Cain trying to get acceptance from?- God. Earlier in the story, Cain gave God a portion of his crops, but they weren’t his best. His crops were a lukewarm gift to God.

When his brother, Abel, offered choice cuts of meat from his firstborn lambs, God accepted them, but God was not pleased with Cain’s gifts.

That’s where the conversation starts between God and Cain, because God can see the thoughts Cain has, and they are not good.

Then God gives more advice, and says, “But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you…”

Sin is a terrible thing. It is waiting for us to get pulled into its grips. It desires to have us.

God’s final advice is, “But you must rule over it.”

Cain did not take God’s advice. In the next verses we find that he attacked and killed his brother.

People can rule over the sin in their lives, otherwise God would not have told Cain to rule over it.  We have a choice.

What is making the world such an angry place? — Right now, it seems to be Christians, and their desire to please God.

For the people who are doing the persecuting, these verses are for you. You will be accepted by God if you do what is right. If you continue to do the things you know are wrong, sin is crouching at your door, waiting to destroy you, It desires to have you. You must rule over it, or it will rule over you.

God wants to save you, but He is just and righteous. Will you accept His forgiveness, or His wrath?

Jesus knew rejection too. He was God’s Son, but the religious leaders of His time would not accept Him. He was doing the Father’s will, but they killed Him.

Jesus rose again, and is at the right hand of God interceding for us. He asked God to forgive the very ones who were killing Him. He is merciful, and willing to forgive anyone who comes to Him, who believes in Him, and who repents of their sins.

He is not willing that anyone should perish, but wants everyone to come to repentance.

2 Peter 3:9

The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.
Dear God, the world has become filled with sin. We need your mercy and forgiveness. We need to repent and turn to you, and rule over the sin in our lives. Families are broken, children are hurting and lonely, infants are killed, teens are confused about who You are. We need a fresh anointing of Your Holy Spirit. Please give us wisdom and knowledge to know how to live life the right way in this dark world. I pray for Your power and presence in my life, and for Your will to be done. In the name of Jesus, Amen.
-Dawn-

Those People Will Turn Your Children Away From Me:

Deuteronomy 7: (International Children’s Bible)

The Lord your God will bring you into the land. You are entering that land to own it. As you go in, he will force out these nations: the Hittites, Girgashites, Amorites, Canaanites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites. These seven nations are stronger than you. The Lord your God will hand these nations over to you. You will defeat them. You must destroy them completely. Do not make a peace treaty with them. Do not show them any mercy. Do not marry any of them. Don’t let your daughters marry their sons. And don’t let your sons marry their daughters. Those people will turn your children away from me. Your children will begin serving other gods. The Lord will be very angry with you. And he will quickly destroy you. This is what you must do to those people: Tear down their altars. Smash their holy stone pillars. Cut down their Asherah idols and burn their idols in the fire. You are holy people. You belong to the Lord your God. He has chosen you from all the people on earth. You are his very own.

God is holy. He desires a right relationship with us.

We are to purge the things in our life that would cause us to turn from God. Jesus even said that if our hand offended us, to cut it off. (I think he was speaking figuratively?)

If we obey God, and stay close to Him, we are blessed:

12 Pay attention to these laws. Obey them carefully. Then the Lord your God will keep his agreement and show his love to you. He promised your ancestors he would. 13 He will love and bless you. He will make the number of your people grow. He will bless you with children. He will bless your fields with good crops. He will give you grain, new wine and oil. He will bless your cows with calves and your sheep with lambs. This is the way it will be in the land he promised your ancestors he would give you. 14 You will be blessed more than any other people. Every husband and wife will have children. All your cattle will have calves. 15 The Lord will take away all disease from you. You will not have the terrible diseases that were in Egypt. But he will give them to your enemies. 16 You must destroy all the people the Lord your God hands over to you. Do not feel sorry for them. Do not worship their gods. They will trap you.

If you don’t know how to handle the giants who are trying to destroy your faith, God gives this advice to His people:

You might say to yourselves, “These nations are stronger than we are. We can’t force them out.” 18 But don’t be afraid of them. Remember what the Lord your God did to all of Egypt and its king. 19 You saw for yourselves the troubles, signs and miracles he did. You saw how the Lord’s great power and strength brought you out of Egypt. The Lord your God will do the same thing to all the nations you now fear. 20 The Lord your God will also send hornets to attack them. Even those who are alive and hiding from you will die. 21 Don’t be afraid of them. The Lord your God is with you. He is a great God and people are afraid of him.

God, Himself, has the power and strength to defeat your enemies.  You do not even have to be afraid.

Your job is to try and remain pure and holy. Keep yourself from being polluted by the world. We are saved by grace, not by what we’ve done, but Jesus told the ones he forgave to go and sin no more. If we are to be ambassadors for Christ, we need to represent Him well.

Dear God, I know You desire for us to be Holy as You are Holy. We cannot do this in our own power. In these days it is easy to be deceived. Even men posing as ministers are telling their congregations things that are contrary to Your word. There are many wolves in sheep’s clothing, and many anti-Christs. Help us God to not be deceived. Keep our faith secure in You. If the salt loses its saltiness, what good is it? Help me God, to stay strong and firm in You. I am weak, but You are strong! In Jesus’s Name. Amen.

-Dawn-

From a Servant of Sin, to a Servant of God:

For when ye were the servants of sin, ye were free from righteousness.

What fruit had ye then in those things wherof ye are now ashamed? for the end of those things is death.

But now being made free from sin, and become servants to God, ye have your fruit unto holiness, and the end everlasting life.

For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. Romans 6:20-23

There was no reward in the things I now say I am ashamed to have done. I only wish that I had known God all the days of my life. As these verses point out, the wages of sin is death.

When I was freed of sin, and became a servant of God, (which is such a privilege) I started to have peace, patience, joy, gentleness, kindness, and felt the warmth and light of God in my life. (the fruit unto holiness) I also look forward to, and have hope in, eternal life with Christ. (there are no words amazing enough to describe that)

My life with Jesus on this planet is not always easy. I often fail at doing the right thing. But that is when I experience the grace of God. He is willing to forgive sins.

I am encouraged when I read about the disciples who had the enormous privilege of walking with Christ. They failed too, and Jesus always assured them of His love.

Thomas doubted him, Judas betrayed him, and Peter denied Jesus.

Jesus let Thomas put his fingers in His wounded, nail-scarred hands. Jesus gave Peter the opportunity to tell Him how much he loved Him, and Jesus said that Peter would help build the early church.

Judas hung himself, yet Revelation 21:14 says that the the names of the twelve apostles will be on the foundations of the walls of the New Jerusalem.

I love reading about Peter because his reactions have been like my own. When I saw the holiness of Jesus, I couldn’t believe He would want to save a sinner like me.

When Peter saw the miracle of his fishing nets full of fish, and knew Jesus had such power, Peter told Jesus to go away from him, because he was a sinner. Jesus didn’t go away.

I’m so glad that Peter came to terms with accepting that Jesus loved him, because that helped me to understand that Jesus loves me too.

If you are worried that Jesus couldn’t forgive you, or maybe you’ve denied Christ after you knew Him, maybe you’ve doubted? There is room at the cross for you! Jesus is willing to forgive sins.

The gift of God is eternal life through Jesus.

Dear Lord, I am so thankful that You have forgiven me of all my sins. I pray for everyone who desires to know You, that they would seek You, and find You, and that You would draw near to them. Send workers for the harvest, and help me to be a good ambassador for You. I pray for God’s will to be done. In Your Name, Amen.

-Dawn-