In My Words
By: Steve Shirley
The following is my attempt to create some short Bible based messages, in a simple and easy to understand way.
I'd rather hang out with people who admit they struggle with sin in their life and are sorry for it, than with those who think sin isn't really a problem in their life, and don't give it a second thought.
I'd rather be surrounded with a group of people that are on fire for God but don't know their Bible that well, than with a group of Bible scholars who have no fire.
I'd rather hear about what God has done in your life this week more than anything else.
I'd rather have people think I am a "Jesus Freak," than for them to not even know I am a Christian.
I'd rather have a few people praying fervently for me, than a bunch of people who won't really pray that hard.
I'd rather have one person leading worship while playing a piano who is truly worshipping God, than a whole band who is just playing worship music.
I'd rather go to a new church and have one person sit down next to me and get to know me, than have ten people shake my hand and say "Welcome."
I'd rather not use my Christian liberty to do certain things in my life, than to use it and possibly cause a fellow Christian to stumble in their walk with the Lord.
I'd rather see a church have an altar call for unbelievers every week to come forward and give their lives to Christ, and only one person a month comes forward to be saved, than to see a church have no altar call at all.
I'd rather take a chance on losing a friendship while on earth for sharing the Gospel with that friend and upsetting them, than to say nothing, and one day lose their friendship for eternity.
Are you sharing the burdens of your Christian brother? You should be. (see: Gal 6:1-2)
Do you think there are many ways to eternal life? Jesus said you are wrong! He said HE was the only way! (see: Jn 14:6)
Every person, job, accomplishment, etc... will eventually disappoint. Only our Lord will never disappoint.
You can read the Bible without the Holy Spirit, but you will never truly understand it. The things of God are, including God's Word, are "spiritually discerned." (see: 1 Cor 2:14)
No matter what you are facing, it isn't too big for God. (see: Jer 32:17,27, Gen 18:14)
The Bible says that "only" those who have placed their faith in Jesus are "children of God." (see: Gal 3:26, Jn 1:12)
Christian, don't ever go anywhere without wearing your spiritual armor. (see: Eph 6:10-17)
Do you "fear" God? You should! The Bible says it is the "beginning of wisdom." (see: Ps 111:10, Prov 9:10)
When you become a Christian, you are going to lose some friends. This is a good thing. New friends are coming!
Christians can lay up treasures in Heaven, and when you do, no one can steal them. They will be waiting for you when you get there. (see: Mt 6:19-20, Mk 10:21)
If you are a Christian, God has given you are least one spiritual gift which you can use to serve Him. Find it, and use it.
God knows "exactly" the day you will die. No one, or nothing can alter that day.
If you put try to God first in "everything" that you do, you can never go wrong.
The primary goal of all Christians should be to become more and more like Jesus. (see: Eph 4:13,15, Phil 3:12-14)
No person that you see in a day is there by accident. What will you do with that opportunity?
If God calls you to do something for Him, do it, no matter who tries to stop you.
What you want to accomplish may be impossible for you, but it is not impossible for God. (see: Mt 19:26, Lk 1:37)
As a Christian, some people should hate you. Jesus said to expect it. (see: Jn 15:19-20)
God's ways are higher than our ways. We will never fully understand. (see: Isa 55:8-9, Job 37:5)
God's timing very rarely matches up with our timing.
God will deal with those who do evil to you. We are not to deal with them ourselves. (see: Rom 12:19)
God hates pride (Prov 6:16-17). God "gives grace to the humble" (1 Pet 5:5)(James 4:6).
Those who belong to Jesus have "ministering angels." (see: Heb 1:14)
Peter got out of the boat and started to walk on water, but then began to drown because of a lack of faith. But, at least he had the faith to get out of the boat.
When you are "born again," everything that you did prior to that moment is in the past. You start a whole new life!
Every Christian has a testimony of how Jesus has changed you. It is one of your greatest witnessing tools.
Job said in (Job 31:1), "I made a covenant with mine eyes." Have you done this? Be careful what you look at.
Paul said in (1 Th 5:18)(Eph 5:20) to give thanks in "everything." "Some" is not too difficult, "everything" is very difficult.
God can take our weaknesses and turn them into strengths.
There is NOTHING in the universe that does not belong to God.
Everyone should have at least one goal in life that they cannot reach unless God helps them.
Sometimes, there is a battle in the heavens for our prayers to be answered, so be patient. (see: Dan 10:12-14)
If you help your enemy, sometimes it can be like "heaping coals of fire on his head." (see: Rom 12:20)
If you have faith even the size of a tiny "mustard seed," you can do amazing things with God's help.
Someday, the "fullness of the Gentiles" (Rom 11:25) will be reached. Amazing things will begin to happen at that time!
The wicked may prosper for a while, but not forever. (see: Ps 37:1)
Taking the Lord's Supper should not be done lightly. (1 Cor 11:27-30) says some have been sick, and others have died for taking it in an "unworthy manner."
God should be glorified in EVERYTHING we do. (see: 1 Cor 10:31)
Jesus must always become greater, we must always become less. (see: Jn 3:30)
Without the resurrection of Jesus, there would be no Christianity. (see: 1 Cor 15:14,17)
If you know how many times you have prayed today, you probably aren't "praying without ceasing." (see: 1 Th 5:17)
If you love God, He promises to "work all things together for your good." (see: Rom 8:28).
You are just as much of a sinner as anyone else.
Doing good works is important, but doing them to earn salvation is useless.
Be a "cheerful giver." God loves that! (see: 2 Cor 9:7)
No one loves you more than Jesus loves you!
Every single world leader is in power only because God allows it. (see: Rom 13:1-2, Jn 19:11)
I like this analogy on God seeing the bigger picture: You only see part of the parade from ground level. God sees the whole parade from His viewpoint up high.
Jesus understands when you are tempted. While on earth, He was tempted too. (see: Heb 2:18, Heb 4:15-16)
The only one who can "truly" know your heart is God. (see: 1 Kin 8:39, 1 Sam 16:7)
Those who believe in Jesus without seeing Him are called "blessed." (see: Jn 20:29)
Do you have someone in your life who is "sharpening your iron?" This can be invaluable. (see: Prov 27:17)
Everything that you need in your life, God will supply it. (see: Phil 4:19)
Sometimes, the reason why we don't get what we pray for is because it "consumes upon our lusts." (see: James 4:3)
Do you need renewed strength? Wait for the Lord. (see: Isa 40:31)
Before you do or say anything, think of Christ.
We should never fear what any man can do to us. (see: Mt 10:28, Ps 118:6)
The trials in our life produce endurance (James 1:2-3), and patience (Rom 5:3-4).
When I gave my life to Jesus, it took a while for many things to change, but one thing that changed immediately was a "peace that passes all understanding." (see: Phil 4:7)
Jesus is not, nor ever has been: an angel, a "good" man, or an "enlightened" teacher. Jesus is, and always has been God!
The Bible clearly says that Father is God, Jesus is God, and the Holy Spirit is God. The Bible also says "God is one" (Deut 6:4)(Jas 2:19). This is why Christians believe in a 3 in 1 triune God (the Trinity).
Sooner or later, Jesus will come knocking at your door. Will you answer? (see: Rev 3:20)
People change, God never changes. (see: Mal 3:6, Jas 1:17)
When a person is born again, he receives the Holy Spirit (Eph 1:13-14). This is the "guarantee" of our salvation (2 Cor 1:22)(2 Cor 5:5).
If the Holy Spirit lives inside of you, you belong to God (Rom 8:9). If you don't have the Holy Spirit, you don't belong to God.
When we receive the Holy Spirit at salvation, He will do "many" things in us. Among them is to comfort (Jn 14:16), teach (Jn 14:26), and guide (Jn 16:13) us, and to give us "righteousness, peace, and joy" (Rom 14:17).
While Jesus was on Earth, He said it was "good" that He was leaving, because then the Holy Spirit could come. (see: Jn 16:7)
It is easy to love someone who loves you. What should set a Christian apart is loving those who hate you. (see: Mt 5:44, Lk 6:27-28)
Peter said, "we ought to obey God rather than men" (Acts 5:29). This applies more than ever today.
God will "test" us, but He will never "tempt" us. (see: Jas 1:13)
Jesus was sinless (2 Cor 5:21)(Heb 4:15). We are sinners (1 Jn 1:8,10)(Rom 3:23). The "wages of (our) sin is death (Hell)" (Rom 6:23). This is why we need Jesus. His perfect sinless, righteousness is "imputed" to us (2 Cor 5:19,21)(Rom 4:7-8,24-25), and saves us, when we place our trust in Him.
The Holy Spirit can give us "supernatural power" from God to accomplish tasks that we could never accomplish on our own (see: Acts 4:8-12, 31, Acts 13:9-12). We should pray to be "filled" over and over with the Spirit (Eph 5:18). (This is not a one-time experience.)
There are "countless" number of angels working on God's behalf (Rev 5:11)(Dan 7:10)(Heb 12:22). Many times, they are sent to help us in some way.
The 5th Commandment says to "honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long" (Ex 20:12)(Eph 6:2-3). (This is the first Commandment with a promise.)
Before you get a divorce, think about these 4 words from God: "For I hate divorce." (see: Mal 2:16).
Are you seeking to connect with God in a deeper way? Consider humbling yourself before God by fasting.
Fornication is "any" sex outside of marriage. Jesus calls it an "evil sin" (see: Mt 15:19, Mk 7:21). We are told to "flee" from it (1 Cor 6:18).
God tells us to "hate" a number of things: evil, pride, and arrogancy (Prov 8:13), iniquity (Heb 1:9), lying (Prov 13;15), vain thoughts (Ps 119:113), bribes (Prov 15:27), covetousness (Prov 28:16), the love of money (Lk 16:13), and even "our life in this world" (Jn 12:25).
God can heal sickness, but God does not always heal immediately, and sometimes He chooses not to heal at all (see: 1 Tim 5:23, 2 Tim 4:20). Do NOT be mislead into thinking there is something wrong with your faith if you haven't been healed.
The Bible says that the words that come out of your mouth show what is in your heart (Mt 15:18)(Mt 12:34)(Lk 6:45).
If you think you are facing a lot of trials in your life, take a look at the trials of Paul in (2 Cor 11:23-28). It might help put things in perspective.
God encourages persistent prayer (Lk 18:1-8)(Lk 11:5-13), but not mindless, repetitive prayer ("vain repetitions") (Mt 6:7).
Did you know that (1 Sam 12:23) says it is a sin if we don't pray for others?
Satan cannot do anything to God's chosen people that God does not allow. (see: Lk 22:31, Job 1:6-12, Job 2:1-7)
When we are being persecuted for our faith, Jesus said we are "blessed." (see: Mt 5:10-12)
Christians should not be "yoked" with unbelievers. Christians are called "light," and unbelievers are called "dark." (see: 2 Cor 6:14-18, Eph 5:6-8,11)
Wouldn't it be great to be called "a man after God's own heart?" That's what God said about David in (Acts 13:22)(1 Sam 13:14).
Jesus also draws "all" men to Himself (Jn 12:32), however, we can reject this drawing: (Jn 5:40)(Mt 23:37)(Lk 13:34). PLEASE don't reject it!
Did you know that appearances of Jesus can be found in the Old Testament? It is a "fascinating" study! Check it out!
We must take up our cross and follow after Jesus. Jesus said if we don't, He said we aren't worthy of Him. (see: Mt 10:38)
You aren't worthy of Jesus if you love your father, or mother, or son, or daughter more than Him. (see: Mt 10:37)
As Christians, we need to remember that while we are on this planet, it is not our home. We are not to "love" the things of this world. (see: 1 Jn 2:15-17, Jas 4:4)
Most people constantly strive to be first. Jesus said that to be first, we must be last (and a "servant of all"). (see: Mk 9:35)
Have you sometimes wondered if it is better to die and go to be with Jesus, or stay on earth and carry out God's work? Paul had this dilemma. He chose to stay, and God used him mightily. (see: Phil 1:21-24)
The greatest love you can show to another person is to lay down your life for them. (see: Jn 15:12-13, 1 Jn 3:16).
Do you say, "I could never be a thief, adulterer, alcoholic, drug addict, etc...?" (1 Cor 15:10) says, "But by the grace of God I am what I am." (My favorite Bible verse.) If not for God's grace, we might fall into any sin.
It is easy to tell people that they need to forgive, but when it comes to our own need to forgive, it isn't always so easy to do.
One of the primary reasons why non-believers want nothing to do with going to church is because they believe it is filled with "hypocrites." They expect Christians to live to a higher standard. I believe that it is right for them to expect this.
Our love for others should not be based upon "feelings." Feelings will eventually fade. Our love should be based upon "commitment." No matter how we "feel," we will still love a person, because we are "committed" to them.
To me, one of the scariest things is a person who says, "I am a Christian, but I can't remember the last time I read my Bible."
We should be thankful that God doesn't always give us "everything" that we ask for in prayer.
All through the Bible, God chose to use people that nobody would have expected Him to use.
Do you long to hear from God? Read your Bible.
According to the Bible, all people on earth fall into one of two categories: "children of God" or "children of Satan." You are only a "child of God" through faith in Jesus Christ (Gal 3:26). Otherwise....
(2 Chr 16:9) says, "For the eyes of the LORD range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him." If you need God's "strength," keep this verse in mind.
The Bible says "the Word of God will endure forever" (Isa 40:8)(1 Pet 1:23-25). God supernaturally protects His Word, and it will "endure" whether I defend it or not. But, I'm still gonna defend it.
Some of the strongest Christian testimonies come from people who are "born again" later in life. It's NEVER too late!
As you grow in your Christian faith, you are going to find more and more things that you didn't realize were sin.
I know that there are perfectly good reasons for why I wasn't saved until I was 32 years old, but sometimes I still do the "what if" I had been saved in high school thing. (I still think about my high school best friend committing suicide.)
I don't think there has ever been a time in history when more people are "proud" of their sins than they are today.
Each time you attempt to take a step to grow in your faith, you can expect stronger opposition from Satan. Push through!
It is amazing how many times I have heard someone say, "I am going to start going to church again this week," or "I am going to start attending Bible study this week," then some (often small) thing happens, and they don't go.
Lately, there are days when I am barely able to sleep at all. Almost without fail, something big for God happens later on in the day.
There is a Biblical difference between "questioning God" and "doubting God." Many people questioned God in the Bible, and He seemed to have no problem with it. However, He did have a problem when people "doubted" Him.
Many people pray for God to "change" someone in their life, but sometimes, the better prayer might be for God to "change" you, and how you react to that person.
We need to be happy where we are, on the way to where God is taking us. If we can't be happy where we are, God likely isn't going to give us more.
It's not our having possessions that Jesus minds, it is being unwilling to give up our possessions that is the problem. (see: Mk 10:17-22)
Do you have a "prayer closet?" This isn't necessarily a closet per se, but rather, it is simply a place you can regularly go to to get alone with God, and spend some time with Him in prayer.
One of two things is always true with every trial that happens in our lives: #1. God causes it, #2. God allows it. Either way, God is in total control, and has a reason for what is happening.
God has created you just the way you are. Don't compare yourself to others.
The unsaved are acting the way they are supposed to act. We cannot expect an unsaved person to act like the saved.
The more the Christian church is persecuted, and its believers killed, the more it continues to grow. That doesn't make sense to many in this world.
Satan can perform miracles too. Never forget that! (see: Mt 24:24, 2 Th 2:9, Rev 16:14, Rev 19:20)
Have you ever seen a person that you know is a Christian just by looking at them? I want to be that person one day.
There are two kinds of anger: unrighteous and righteous. Unrighteous anger is becoming angry over wrongs that are done to us. This is sin. Jesus never displayed this. Righteous anger is becoming angry over wrongs done to others. This is not sin. Jesus did this.
Many times, answered prayer brings a person closer to God, however, sometimes it ends up leading a person farther from God. It may not always be best to get what you pray for.
The primary purpose of prayer should always be to comfort our will to God's will, not the other way around.
Hell is always a choice. A person will end up there if they stubbornly refuse throughout their lifetime to confess that they are a sinner, and need Jesus to pay for their sin.
Forgiving is not contingent on forgetting what someone did to you, it is based upon on not holding their sin against them anymore.
God can take our weakness, and turn it into strength. In doing this, God alone gets the glory for what we do. (see: 2 Cor 12:7-10)
There is a song called "Hosanna," and one of the lyrics says, "(God) break my heart for what breaks yours." This would be a great prayer.
Our faith usually doesn't grow a lot when things are going well, it grows in the midst of trials.
There is never a single moment when God is not thinking about you or watching you.
In Heaven, some will be given many rewards, and some few. We will not be jealous of those who get more, because "jealousy" is a sin, and there is no sin in Heaven. Instead, I believe we will selflessly rejoice with those who get more rewards. If only that would happen on earth right now.
I thank God for those Bible teachers that make me want to go out and change the world after I hear or read their teachings.
STD's and abortions would virtually disappear if men and women would simply follow God's plan for us: sex only for one man and one woman joined as one in marriage.
A lot of the mistakes I have made in my life are because I have tried to please people rather than God.
When I look back at a lot of the things I did in my life before I became a Christian, it literally makes me sick. I am SO thankful for a new life in Jesus!
It is so amazing to me that some people that I know from my past, that I never thought would become Christians, are now Christians. (I am sure some are amazed that I am too.)
I love (Acts 12:5-17). People are gathered to pray (likely for Peter's release from prison). Peter is released by an angel, goes to the place they are praying, and knocks on the door. A girl answers the knock, then tells the gathering "It is Peter." They think she is crazy, and say, "It is his angel." How often do we pray, and don't really believe God will answer?
You can combine all of the knowledge found on the internet, and it will still pale in comparison to what God knows.
God wants us to pray about ALL things. There is nothing too small. Keep in mind that "everything" is small to God.
Many people don't like to pray in front of others because they are afraid they will sound stupid. (I have struggled with this.) However, if you just focus on talking to God one to one, and shut everything else out, it gets easier.
Spending time with a person who was recently and radically saved, and is now on fire for God is pretty awesome.
"My faith is a personal thing, I don't want to talk about it." I use to say this. Now, it scares me when I hear others say it. I was lost when I said it.
One thing I try to do from time to time in my prayer life is to think of all the "little" things that God does in my life, that I hardly ever thank Him for. Then, I take time to thank Him (i.e. that the dryer is still running, that I have air conditioning, that I have clean water to drink, etc...).
Most Christians think that when they get to Heaven and see the Lord, they will run up to Him and give Him big a hug. I think we will fall on our faces, and probably won't be getting up for a long time.
No matter how hard you try to carry out the will of God, if you do it without the power of the Holy Spirit, you won't get very far.
Every day could be a God-given chance for you to change someone's life for eternity.
Satan knows what the Bible says better than you do, but he distorts the meaning of its verses.
I know of no one, who at the end of their life has ever regretted praying too much, reading their Bible too much, or worshipping the Lord too much.
When you are a Christian who is serving the Lord, there are two ways to get yourself in trouble: #1. Believing everything bad that people say about you, #2. Believing everything good that people say about you.
As Christians, our sin can never separate us from our "union" with God, but it can break our "communion" with God. This is why we need to confess and repent when we sin. We do not want any sin to hinder a close relationship with the Father.
The more time we spend with someone, the better we get to know them. This also applies to knowing God.
If a Christian in America had to suffer like Christians do in other parts of the world, how many would stand strong?
You know how upsetting it can be when you think you know someone, and then they suddenly change? This never happens with God; He never changes. (see: Mal 3:6, Jas 1:17, Heb 13:8)
Are Christians to "tolerate" what other religions teach about what we have to do to have eternal life? Jesus said He was the "ONLY" way to eternal life (Jn 14:6). That doesn't sound "tolerant" to me.
This is a fact shown in the Bible, and throughout history: the more a person has, the less likely they are to place their trust in Jesus. (see: Mt 19:24)
Do non-Christians see something in your life as a Christian that they are missing?
Yes, God wants you to be happy, but having joy is more important from a Biblical standpoint.
Every miracle that God does first begins as a problem.
Every Christian has at least one miracle that God has done in their life: the moment they were converted and became a Christian.
God promises to "work all things for good for those who love Him" (Rom 8:28). This is a matter of faith and trust in the Lord, because many times, from our perspective, it may not seem like He is doing this.
If you practicing hidden sin in your life that you are afraid that people will find out about at any moment, you will never have the full power of God to minister to those people.
Salvation is never shown in the Bible to be a "process." It comes in an "instant," and what happens in that "instant" is God comes to live inside of you in the form of the Holy Spirit. You are "saved" at that moment (Eph 1:13-14).
I am criticized for this thinking by many, but when I first meet someone, my first assumption is that they are "lost" (not saved), and I am going to find a way to share the Gospel with them as soon as possible.
God is not concerned with our ability, only our availability.
I am amazed at how many people today believe they are "sharing the Gospel," and never mention sin, or repentance, or Hell.
You may be smart, but you will never have "wisdom" without God's Word.
Perhaps the best proof that the Bible is the inspired Word of God is that hundreds of years before Jesus came to Earth, the Old Testament told us dozens of things about Him, and each of these were accurately fulfilled when He came.
I am convinced that Christians who are "people pleasers" have the hardest time sharing the Gospel.
An old saying, "God is God, and you are not."
This verse always stays with me, "For our God is a consuming fire" (Heb 12:29).
If you say you are "saved," and you aren't doing good works, you better question if you are "saved."
If you are an alcoholic, don't go to a bar, order a drink, and then pray "God, help me not to drink this."
If I baked a "big" batch of brownies, and mixed in a very tiny amount of dog poop, would you eat the brownies? The same is true with sin in our lives. Mixing in a "little" sin can ruin a lot more.
What did you do for the Lord today?
I feel fairly confident that most of what we think we will do in Heaven won't be what we will do in Heaven.
That God actually lives inside of me is utterly amazing, and also a bit terrifying at times.
In (1 Kin 19:18), God said to Elijah, "Yet I will leave 7,000 in Israel, all the knees that have not bowed to Baal and every mouth that has not kissed him." This verse gives me comfort. (Also see: Rom 11:4)
If people actually believed Jesus could return tomorrow, everything would change.
Thankfully, God's love for us isn't affected by what we do.
Many believe that if they do more "good things" than someone else, they will get to Heaven. The problem is, the standard to get to Heaven isn't being "better" than someone else, the standard is being as "good" as God! Only by accepting the sinless sacrifice Jesus can this standard be met.
While the words of Jesus in the Bible are definitely important, we must be careful not put them ahead of other words in the Bible. ALL of the words in the Bible are inspired by God and important, not just the words of Jesus. (see: 2 Tim 3:16, 2 Pet 1:20-21)
Concerning "thoughts and prayers." If something bad happens in my life, please don't "think" of me, but instead, "pray" for me.
When you look in the Bible at when people gave their lives to Christ, over and over, they did it publicly. They could be killed for making that commitment. Now, the trend is to have everyone "close their eyes," so a person can quietly make a commit without "being uncomfortable or embarrassed." Crazy... This is why Billy Graham encouraged people making a commitment to come forward at his Crusades.
To me, one of the greatest tragedies of today is that most people who call themselves "Christian" have no idea how to share the Gospel with someone.
(Jn 10:28) says, "and I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand." So, once you have eternal life, you cannot pull yourself out of God's hand by doing the wrong thing. You are not stronger than God!
Time means nothing to the Lord. (see: Ps 90:4, 2 Pet 3:8)
In Jesus, we can be forgiven of any sin. However, we may still have to face consequences from our sin. (Jesus can help us through that though.)
Would people really like a movie or television show less if it contained no curse words?
I know that while I am on this planet my life can be nothing like it will be in Heaven one day. However, I keep trying to take some steps in that direction.
Do you ever stop to think about the words you are singing in church, and whether or not you really mean what you are singing?
God is both love "and" justice. The justice part gets left out quite a bit today.
Wouldn't it be nice if "brothers and sisters" in Christ treated fellow Christians like "actual" brothers and sisters?
Jesus used Scripture to fight the temptations of Satan (Mt 4:1-11). How can we expect to fight temptations if we don't know Scripture?
One of my "heroes of the faith," Leonard Ravenhill said, "I doubt that more than two percent of professing Christians in the United States are truly born again." He may not be right, but I constantly think about that now.
I once heard a pastor say, "If your church closed today, would anyone in the community notice?"
Please pray this for me too: (Eph 6:19) "Pray also for me, that whenever I speak, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel."
The "greatest in the kingdom of heaven" will be those who humble themselves as a little child. (see: Mt 18:4)
Perhaps the greatest words of Jesus: "It is finished." (see: Jn 19:30)
Most of us do not like listening to people who complain. God doesn't like it either. (see: Phil 2:14, 1 Cor 10:10)
When we confess our sins and repent, God forgives us. However, sometimes we need to remember to forgive ourselves too.
The main problem with "prosperity teaching" is that it goes against (Heb 13:5), and other verses which say to: "be content with what you have."
God knew you, and loved you, before you were even conceived! (see: Ps 139:13-16, Jer 1:5)
The Bible says that we are to "defend the needy." Is there anyone more in need of defense than the unborn? (see: Prov 31:8-9, Ps 82:2-4)
No matter where a Christian is, they are "never" alone because the Holy Spirit lives in them. (see: 1 Cor 6:19-20, Jn 14:16)
I have gotten myself in trouble more times than I can count over this, but to me, a lie is a lie, whether it is big, small, or a half-truth. If you ask me something, expect the truth (i.e. "Do you like this outfit?").
Of all the Bible studies I have written, the one that I get the most questions about (by far) is making oaths to God. So many have make an oath, and now they want to break it. PLEASE be careful about making an oath to God! You may later regret it.
The only way this world will ever truly find "peace" is through Jesus Christ. (see: Jn 14:27, Jn 16:33)
In Heaven, there will be no more pain (Rev 21:4), sorrow (Rev 7:17), or evil (Rev 22:3,15).
God comforts us in our troubles so that we can comfort others. (see: 2 Cor 1:3-7)
There is only one place in the Bible that shows Jesus sleeping; it is in the midst of a storm (Mt 8:23-27). I believe this is a picture of how we can have peace through Jesus in the midst of our storms.
When you are tempted to get mad when someone hurts you, remember that your enemy is not "flesh and blood," but Satan and his angels. (see: Eph 6:12)
"Antichrist" is used to describe any person who denies Jesus is the Christ, or who denies the Father and the Son (1 Jn 2:22). Any person who does not confess Jesus is come in the flesh (1 Jn 4:3)(2 Jn 1:7) is also "antichrist."
When we need the Lord's help, we desperately cry out to Him in prayer. I don't understand why some people think this applies to everything except the need to pray for salvation. (see: Rom 10:13)
God can take your past and use it to make a difference in someone else's life.
In our weakness and infirmity, the Holy Spirit makes intercession for us. (see: Rom 8:26-27)
The word "Almighty" in the New Testament comes from the Greek word "pantokrator" meaning "all-power." This is where we get our word "omnipotent," meaning "all-powerful." Only God is omnipotent = Almighty. Jesus is called "Almighty" in (Rev 1:8) and (Rev 4:8).
In the Old Testament, there was no command to forgive sins. It was always an eye for an eye (Ex 21:24-25) or restitution (Ex Ch. 21 & 22). Only God could forgive sins. So, when Jesus forgave sins (Lk 5:20-25)(Mk 2:1-12)(Mt 9:1-8)(Lk 7:47-50), He was claiming deity.
John the Baptist was born 6 months before Jesus (Lk 1:24-2:7), yet in (Jn 1:30) John said that "He (Jesus) existed before me" (NASB) (or "he was before me"- KJV). In saying this, he was clearly proclaiming Jesus' eternal existence as God.
(Mt 18:20) "For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there I am in the midst of them." We often quote this verse, but have you ever stopped to think that in saying this, Jesus was claiming that He could be everywhere at once? Omnipresence!
Amendment 1 of the Constitution says, "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof..." Nowhere does the Constitution say, "church and state should be separate." This country was founded on God!
The Bible seems pretty clear that dinosaurs and man were on the earth together (see descriptions in: Job Ch. 40 & 41). The belief that dinosaurs were millions of years before man is not supported by the Bible.
Is there anything God can't do? Yes! He cannot lie (Heb 6:18). He cannot be tempted with evil (Jas 1:13). He cannot deny Himself (2 Tim 2:13). He cannot change (Mal 3:6). He cannot stop loving us (Rom 8:38-39), and more...
The Bible reveals very little about Jesus' appearance. I believe this is deliberate because God has said that we are not to focus on outward appearances (Jn 7:24)(1 Sam 16:7). We should always look at what is on the inside of a person, and not how they look on the outside.
I truly believe God has a sense of humor. I see it in the Bible at times, and I have seen Him do things in my own life which I feel sure He is behind and laughing at.
God desires for ALL men to be saved and go to Heaven (1 Tim 2:3-4)(2 Pet 3:9)(Mt 18:14).
How does the Bible say we are saved? By trusting (Eph 1:12-13), receiving and believing (Jn 1:12-13) in Jesus Christ to save us by faith (1 Pet 1:9), through hearing the word (Col 1:6). calling upon Him in prayer (Rom 10:13), confessing He is Lord, and arose from the dead (Rom 10:9-10), and repenting of our sins (Acts 3:19).
God has made His presence known to ALL men through the testimony and light of creation (Rom 1:18-20)(Ps 19:1-2) and conscience (Rom 2:12-16).
For a while after I was saved, I did not go to church because I was so upset that the church I had grown up in had not told me how to actually be saved. I thought all churches were the same, and I wanted nothing to do with them. I later learned differently.
(Heb 10:25) tells us not to "forsake the assembling of yourselves together." Christians "must" join together for fellowship and worship.
God knows the exact number of hairs on your head (Mt 10:30)! Some, like me, make this task a little easier for God.
(Mt 19:19) says, "Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself." Some people miss one part of this verse: we should love "ourselves" too.
The 3rd Commandment says, "Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain." Taking the Lord's name in vain is to use it as a swear word, to use it falsely in an oath, or the most common use today, to use it frivolously or with no real purpose. This includes the often uttered "Oh my G_d" (or OMG).
(Gal 6:2) tells us to "bear one another's burdens." This is important, but if all you do is share your "burdens" with someone "every time" you get together, you may not have many left to help you bear your burdens after a while.
If you have a view of God that is different from what the Bible says, you have made a god in your own image.
(Rom 13:14) says, "make no provision for the flesh." Do not open the door to "anything" that might lead you to sin.
The Bible says that we were created for God (Col 1:16) and His pleasure (Rev 4:11); for His glory (Isa 43:7), and to praise and worship Him (Isa 43:21)(1 Pet 2:9)(Ps 102:18).
God did not "need" to create us, He "wanted" to create us. I believe the reason, quite simply, is "love." Love cannot be shared if there is no one to love, and God wanted people upon which He could pour out His immense love.
We are told in (Ps 53:2) that God is looking down from Heaven for those who are seeking Him. Those who "seek" God will: "find Him" (Deut 4:29), "be rewarded" (Heb 11:6), "not lack for any good thing" (Ps 34:10), "be blessed" (Ps 119:2), and "not be forsaken" (Ps 9:10).
When you look in the Bible, and throughout history, true "revival" came when the word of God was boldly preached, and people became so convicted about the holiness of God and their total unworthiness, that they fell to their knees in sorrow, contrition, humility, and reverence for God.
The God of the Old Testament, and the God of the New Testament are the same God. God didn't suddenly change from the Old to the New.
Yes, I am a Bible "fundamentalist." I believe the Bible is the inerrant, infallible word of God. I believe Jesus is God. I believe in the substitutionary atonement. I believe in the virgin birth of Jesus. I believe in the resurrection of Jesus, and His second coming at some future time.
In (Acts 20:26-27)(NLT), Paul said, "I declare today that I have been faithful. If anyone suffers eternal death, it's not my fault, (27) for I didn't shrink from declaring all that God wants you to know." Can you say this too?
God HATES rebellion, and says it "is as the sin of witchcraft" (1 Sam 15:23).
It is sometimes a very difficult thing, but the Bible clearly says that if a fellow "Christian" is practicing a certain sin and doesn't care, or want to stop it, we need to separate ourselves from them (1 Cor 5:11-13)(2 Th 3:6,14-15)(Titus 3:10-11)(Rom 16:16-17).
Christians do not necessarily need to listen only to Christian music, but whatever music you are listening to should not be glorifying or encouraging sinful things, or using lyrics that are ungodly.
"Christianity is a crutch for weak people." I have heard this all my life. My first response: "What is it easier to do, just live your life in any old way and do whatever you want, or attempt to live your life according to the laws and commandments set down by God?"
Are there aliens on other planets? If there is, Jesus would have to have died to pay for the sins of the people on each of these planets, just as He did on Earth. Personally, I don't think this has happened.
Satan cannot read our minds. Only God is omniscient (all-knowing). Satan cannot know what is in our mind or heart. He can only know things about us that he sees or hears.
No man has ever been perfect and sinless. Only God is perfect and sinless. Jesus was (and still is) perfect and sinless (2 Cor 5:21)(1 Jn 3:5)(1 Pet 2:22).
Sin is equal in "one" way: any sin will keep you out of Heaven (a lie will keep you out of Heaven just as much as murder will). However, nowhere in the Bible does it say that God views all sins equally. The phrase "sin is sin" is not Biblical.
The Bible tells us to be meek (Eph 4:2)(Col 3:12)(1 Tim 6:11). If we are meek, the Bible says we will: Be blessed (Mt 5:5), Have abundance of peace (Ps 37:11), Eat and be satisfied (Ps 22:26), Be guided and taught by the Lord (Ps 25:9), Be lifted up (Ps 147:6), and Be given salvation (Ps 149:4).
D. L. Moody said, "If I walk with the world, I cannot walk with God." As Christians, we live in this world, but we are not to be a part of it. This world is not our home. It is where we temporarily live until we arrive in our permanent home with the Lord in Heaven.
Humans are God's greatest creation. Only humans are made "in the image of God" (Gen 1:26-27)(Gen 9:6)(Jas 3:9)!
The Bible says that if we obey God's commandments (Jn 15:11), pray in Jesus' name (Jn 16:24), and are in fellowship with the Father and Jesus Christ (1 Jn 1:4), our joy will be full.
The first priority of Jesus was to please the Father, and do His will (Mt 26:39)(Jn 5:30)(Jn 6:38). If we would have this same desire, we would sin a lot less.
In the Old Testament, the Holy Spirit dwelt temporarily in certain people to carry out God's will. In the New Testament (and today), the Holy Spirit dwells permanently in those who belong to God through faith in Jesus Christ (Eph 1:13-14)(2 Cor 1:21-22). What a privilege!
It is important to understand that no one had the power to take the life of Jesus. Jesus could have stopped those who were murdering Him at any time (Mt 26:53-54). He freely gave His life (Jn 10:18)(Titus 2:14)(1 Jn 3:16) out of love for us, to pay for our sins.
Two questions I ask, along with the answers I hope to hear: [Question] "What was the greatest day of your life?" [Answer]: "The day I surrendered my life to Jesus." [Question]: "Who do you love more than anyone else?" [Answer]: "The Lord."
The Bible is clear that God doesn't hear all prayers (i.e. 1 Pet 3:12, Jn 9:31, Isa 59:2, Prov 15:29, Isa 1:15). Why?? I believe one verse answers this the best: "Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me" (Jn 14:6).
One day, we will have a new "glorified" body, just like the body Jesus had after His resurrection (Phil 3:21)(1 Cor 15:48-49)(1 Jn 3:2). It will be powerful, (1 Cor 15:43), incorruptible (1 Cor 15:42), and never die (1 Cor 15:54)(Lk 20:36).
Biblical meditation is "God-centered" (looking outward and upward to God) (Ps 63:6)(Ps 77:12)(Ps 143:5), and primarily focused on His Word (Ps 119:15,23,48,78,148). Most of what is called "meditation" today is "self-centered" (looking inward), seeking to better oneself, and find fulfillment.
I don't care what a person running for president or congress offers to do for me, if they support a woman's right to murder their unborn child, they aren't getting my vote.
"What are some examples of sin?" When asked this question, we often mention things like murder, rape, kidnapping, stealing, but we rarely mention things like: anger (Mt 5:22), bitterness (Eph 4:30-31), envy (1 Pet 2:1), gossip (Lev 19:16), lying (Ex 20:16), and unforgiveness (Mt 6:14-15).
When Job's friends first came to him after he was afflicted, (Job 2:13) says, "So they sat down with him upon the ground seven days and seven nights, and none spake a word unto him: for they saw that his grief was very great." Perhaps something for us to consider?
What will be the greatest place of honor in Heaven? I believe it might be to sit to the right and left of Jesus in His Kingdom. James and John requested this honor, and Jesus said that the Father would make that decision (Mt 20:20-23)(Mk 10:35-40).
The Bible says in Revelation 21 that the "holy city, New Jerusalem" (Rev 21:2), where all believers will one day dwell for all eternity, will not have a sun or moon to light it, "for the glory of God has illuminated it, and its lamp is the Lamb (Jesus)" (Rev 21:23). Isn't that amazing?
Yes, Jesus does miracles and people believe. No, Jesus does not do miracles when people refuse to believe unless he does one. If you are waiting for a miracle to occur before you believe, it likely isn't going to happen. (see: Mt 16:1-4)
No two Christians will ever see each other for the last time. There is great comfort in this saying.
A quote from Warren Wiersbe says, "A prophet weeps while others are laughing." I am not sure that I would call myself a "prophet," but my heart is continually breaking over what I see in the lives of many who call themselves Christians.
It is not "judging" people to tell them what the Bible says about a certain sin.
The most dangerous "false teachers" are often the ones who are teaching what is very close to the truth.
Twenty years ago, I never could have imagined a day when a man who feels like a woman, or who is dressed like a woman, would be competing in women's sports and breaking records, and then going into the ladies locker room to take a shower.
If you know a person is lost, and will end up in Hell one day, is it more loving to: (A.) warn them and share the Gospel "or" (B.) say nothing so you don't make them upset?
I am constantly amazed at how important it is for atheists to convince me that I am wrong about God.
If the only time you are learning about the Bible is on Sunday morning, you have a problem. If you aren't even taking the time to learn on Sunday morning, you have an even bigger problem.
Are you one person in private, and a different person in pubic? If so, you are a hypocrite.
God can't answer your prayer unless you first pray it.
If you actually believe in God, two words are never true: "luck" and "coincidence."
I love to go fishing, but the fishing that I am most concerned with is being a "fisher of men." (see: Mt 4:18-20)
One of my favorite quotes is by John Ortberg: "We'd like to be humble...but what if no one notices?"
Just because a church is large, that doesn't always mean that God is blessing it.
Christianity isn't about what "religion" you are, it is about having personal relationship with Jesus.
I have never once seen a person want to become a Christian so they could be rich.
At the end of each year, my desire is to be able to look back and say, "I am closer to God now than I was at this time last year."
There is no bottom to our ability to dive deeper in our relationship with the Lord.
This may be crazy... but when someone dies who I know was a Christian, one of my first thoughts is usually: "I wonder what they are doing right now?"
I truly believe that my dad was a Christian, but he wasn't a happy person. One thing I can't wait to see in Heaven is my dad smiling.
So many people are lonely. If lonely people would simply reach out to make a difference in the lives of other people, there would be a lot less loneliness.
When you have tried everything else, and hit bottom, that is often where you will find Christ.
I wouldn't trust anyone who has a successful ministry and hasn't suffered greatly.
If you simply believe all of the promises of God in the Bible, you will never worry.
If you believe you can lose your salvation, you will never fully be able to enter into the "rest" of Jesus. (see: Mt 11:28)
As long as there is a natural solution to your problem, your "faith" will never be fully tested.
Work your day around your time with God, not your time with God around your day.
The world is blind to the fact that the more God has been pushed out of our schools, the more violent they have become.
Christians who have gone through severe trials, and come through them with God's help, usually know God in a way most other Christians don't.
Lord, forgive me for the opportunities you gave me today to serve you that I didn't take.
God isn't looking for eloquent prayers, He is looking for prayers from our heart.
That God uses someone like me as a Bible teacher is proof that God can literally use anyone to accomplish His will.
No matter what trials are going on in your life, there are always blessings too. Look for, and cling to those blessings in the midst of your trials.
It is often said that what a leader does in private is no one's business. To me, what they do in private is actually who they are.
When you are dead and buried, what Godly legacy will you leave behind?
When is the last time you heard a sermon on the "fear of God?"
The #1 thing I look for in a church is, what are its members doing for the Lord outside of the Sunday service?
The life of Solomon in the Bible is proof that we can have everything we could possibly desire, and still feel empty without the Lord.
This, from Leonard Ravenhill, "Today Christians spend more money on dog food than missions."
If you left your church because it didn't accept you for "who you are," and "who you are" is in some way connected with practicing a sinful lifestyle, you left the church that you need to be in.
I suspect that when rewards are handed out in Heaven one day, the ones who are most rewarded for their faithfulness will, for the most part, be people we have never heard of.
The longer you stay in the dark, the more your eyes change and get used to it. The same is true with our spiritual life. The longer we stay in the dark, the more we change and get used to it.
One day, Christians will be taken off of this planet in the Rapture. The Holy Spirit, who lives in each Christian will also be removed at that time. The evil that will then occur will be unlike anything this world has ever seen.
I learn a lot about my Christian brothers and sisters based upon the entertainment choices they make.
I can sit down to study the Bible for a little while, then look up at the clock and two hours have passed.
The hardest part of prayer for me has always been listening.
Christ gave His life for you. Are you willing to give your life for Christ?
When we are saved, it is called being "born again." Just as it takes time for a newborn infant to grow and get stronger, so the same is true for a newborn Christian.
Time after time, I have heard people say, "I feel like a weight has been lifted off of my shoulders" after they have made a decision to surrender their life to Jesus.
I remember the days when people used to take notice when the Lord's name was taken in vain, or a curse word was uttered on a movie or television show.
I remember the days when married couples used to sleep in separate beds on television shows so as to not appear sinful.
I remember the days when it was normal to see a family go to church on Sundays on a television show.
I remember the days when the Church wasn't trying to figure out how to reach the younger generation in church services.
I still remember that day in the 70's when the youth pastor came into the Sunday service wearing shorts, and that got everyone talking.
I have a story that few Christians can top. In my youth, I was expelled for life by my Sunday School teacher for refusing to write and say a prayer in front of my class. (I was reinstated the next week by the pastor.)
If there is one positive trend in television shows and movies today, it is that smoking is no longer considered a good thing.
I try to have an extra measure of compassion for youth today. If there were computers in my youth, I suspect I would have been a way bigger mess than I was.
I honestly can't imagine how I could get through some days now if I didn't have Christ.
I remember years ago, some missionary friends coming back to the U.S., and not using ice in their drinks. They explained that they got used to it because you couldn't use ice in the country they were in because of contaminated water. Ice: just a little blessing we can thank God for in the U.S.
The problem many Christians have with "laying up treasure in Heaven" is that it means delayed gratification.
Somewhere on this planet right now is one person that God considers His greatest servant. I would so much love to know who that is and meet them.
There are days when I am utterly astounded at how much Jesus has changed me.
The thing that drives me the craziest about myself is also probably the thing that God has used the most to help others.
One of my favorite sights each year is seeing candles lit while singing Silent Night.
Waiting on God has never been a strength of mine.
What if your dad came to you and said, "I want you to spend decades of your life helping me build a giant boat because God told me that He is going to flood the earth?" Noah's sons likely heard something like that, and did it. I think that deserves some recognition.
If you choose to live your life without Jesus while on earth, that decision will be carried with you into eternity.
You cannot become addicted to alcohol, drugs, cigarettes, gambling, porn, etc... if you never start.
The first time I shared the Gospel with someone, and he gave his life to Christ, I was so excited that I couldn't sleep for two days. That God uses us to win souls for His Kingdom is the greatest privilege and honor we have on this planet.
I was baptized as a baby, grew up in church, believed in Jesus, went to Sunday School, got confirmed, and yet I was lost. Thirty-two years later, I finally heard the Gospel at a Billy Graham Crusade and surrendered my life to Jesus.
If we prayed to God, leaned on God, and spent time with God in the good times as much we do in the bad times, I wonder if we would have less bad times?
I never get tired of hearing testimonies from people whose lives were "radically" changed by Jesus when they were saved.
When someone tells me that they don't know when they were saved, that always worries me a little. How can you go from God "not" living inside of you, to God living inside of you (in the form of the Holy Spirit), and not notice any change?
One of Satan's most used attacks is to make new Christians question whether or not they were actually saved.
One of my favorite quotes: "When I met Christ, I felt that I had swallowed sunshine." (E. Stanley Jones)
When things seem hopeless, lean on the promises of God in the Bible.
Jesus is alive! The founders of all other religions are dead.
Christians should be trying to change the "world," not fit in with it.
Idolatry is more than just worshipping a created image, it is anything or anyone that we love or worship more than God, place ahead of God, or put in place of God. This includes family, friends, money, jobs, houses, cars, television, sports, pleasure, sex, food, and more.
If you sacrificed just one t.v. show a night, and instead spent that time in prayer and God's Word, I guarantee your life would change.
While your life will almost certainly become more difficult once you become a Christian, you will also have the power of Jesus to help you through.
Be thankful that the world doesn't know the things about you that God knows.
Five good steps to remember in prayer (in order): confession of sins / repentance, praising God, thanking God, praying for others, praying for yourself.
God generally doesn't meet our needs well in advance, He meets them day by day.
The Creator of everything in the universe allows you (through Jesus) to talk to Him at ANY time. Do you realize what a privilege this is?
I truly believe that physical pain can at times be connected to unforgiveness.
Everything that God says you can become in the Bible, you can become.
How many grains of sand are there on every beach in the world? The years of our eternal life with Jesus in Heaven will be longer than that.
Satan has existed for thousands of years. He is smarter than you, and more powerful than you. You will "never" defeat Satan! Only through the Lord can victory over Satan be won.
(Isa 40:22), written by Isaiah around 700 B.C. says, "It is he that sitteth upon the circle of the earth." How did Isaiah know the earth had a circular shape? Only God could have known that at that time, and inspired Isaiah to write it.
I just can't picture people in Heaven praising and worshipping God with no emotion; with hands in pockets, standing perfectly still, like many churches today.
God is looking for those who are willing to "present (their) bodies (as) a living sacrifice" (Rom 12:1).
How can a person argue that the "death penalty" is wrong, and then turn around and say "abortion" is acceptable?
Thousands of years ago, God promised to preserve His Word (Isa 40:8)(1 Pet 1:23-25). It is still preserved today, and nothing, or no one, will ever be able to eliminate the Word of God.
In (Lk 17:11-19), Jesus healed 10 lepers. Only one returned to give glory to God, and thank Him. I believe that the primary prayer that needs to be prayed for a person who needs healing is that God will be glorified in the healing, and receive thanks.
Yes, saying "Oh my G_d" is taking the Lord's name in vain.
We do not need Mary, or dead people ("saints") to carry our prayers to God. We can go to Him directly through the blood of Jesus!
The "armor of God" (Eph 6:10-17) does not just automatically "jump" onto our body. We must actively "put it on."
We should never try to contact the dead, or pray to the dead. The Bible calls this "necromancy" (Deut 18:11), and it is a sin.
Satan cannot create something from nothing. An old commercial used to say, "We don't make the things you buy, we make the things you buy better." In describing Satan's power, we might rephrase this, saying, "He doesn't make things, he makes the things God created worse."
Anna (Lk 2:36-38) was a prophetess, was able to spend every moment of her life in God's Temple (praying, fasting, and proclaiming God's word), and she met Jesus Christ. That sounds like an AWESOME life to me!
(Heb 10:25) tells us not to "forsake the assembling of ourselves together." Christians are to gather together for corporate worship, and to study God's Word. Church is the best place for this.
God never meant for us to walk alone. Even Jesus had a group of 12 that he chose, and of that 12, He also had a smaller group of 3 that He shared even more deeply with. When Jesus sent people out, He sent them in "twos" (i.e. Lk 10:1).
I truly believe that all Christians should have people in their lives that they are "accountable" to. One to three people that hold them responsible for their actions in areas of their lives in which they consistently struggle with sin, or fail to live up to God's standards. (see: James 5:16)
Some Christians believe it is wrong to celebrate Christmas. I may be wrong, but I don't believe God the Father is going to say to me in Heaven one day, "I am angry with you because you chose a day to celebrate, and rejoice over the birth of my Son."
Santa is not omniscient (all-knowing). He is not omnipresent (able to be everywhere). He cannot work miracles. He is not immortal. I believe it is wrong to teach children that there is a person called "Santa," who has powers that belong only to God.