Learn about a few of the benefits to seeking the Lord’s wisdom.


Wisdom is the capacity to see things from God’s perspective and respond according to scriptural principles. What are a few of the benefits to seeking the Lord’s wisdom? Let’s look at what the Bible says.

  1. Clear Guidance From God

Wisdom is the capacity to see things from God’s perspective and respond according to scriptural principles.

Those who walk in wisdom receive the Father’s direction for their lives. While God’s children still have some painful experiences, they are spared many mistakes and false starts. Biblical principles spare believers numerous wrong decisions and hurtful relationships.

Nobody is better qualified to guide your steps or lead you to the right path than God.

  • According to Proverbs 3:5-6, what attitude best facilitates the Lord’s direction in a person’s life?
  • What benefits does Proverbs 3:21-26 promise to those who “keep sound wisdom and discretion” (v. 21)?

When we walk in divine wisdom, we can rest assured that the Lord is with us always. He won’t allow us to enter into any situation that He has not anticipated, nor will He permit a circumstance unless He intends it for our good.

  1. God’s Divine Protection

Wisdom protects us from various sources of wickedness, including:

  1. Evil in such forms as dangerous situations, harmful substances, and destructive circumstances. We are to reject evil and flee from it whenever possible.
  • What attitude gets a “fool” (unwise person) into trouble with regard to evil (Prov. 14:16)?
  1. People who entice us to do evil: Any person who tempts you to sin is not a friend. He or she wants to lead you into a situation that will ultimately cause you loss or harm (Prov. 2:10-18).
  1. Misleading emotions: Many people live according to the whims of their emotions. But “what feels good” isn’t always beneficial for us. Instead, we are called to trust the Holy Spirit for guidance rather than our desires, impulses, and feelings.
  • Why should we not trust our hearts (Prov. 28:26)?
  • Briefly describe a choice you made based on what “felt good” rather than what the Lord wanted you to do. What did you learn from that experience?
  1. A Good Self-Image

You are extremely important to God. The Father loves you, values you, and desires a close relationship with you. He has a specific plan for your life. These facts should give you confidence and a strong self-image.

At the very core of our self-image is the desire to be loved and regarded as lovable. Only God can fully satisfy that need. When we accept that He loves us unconditionally, we have the foundation for healthy, godly self-esteem.

  • Some believers feel God no longer loves them because of sin. Why is this rationale not biblical (Rom. 5:8)?
  • What should our attitude be toward ourselves (Prov. 19:8, Matt. 22:39)?

A proper, healthy love for yourself leads to generosity and selfless giving. It also fills you with confidence to move against the tide of popular opinion when necessary. Why? God loves and approves of you, and His opinion is the only one that matters.

  • Where are you in your journey to healthy self-esteem?
  1. Whole-Person Prosperity

The heavenly Father blesses us—and that involves our spirits, minds, and bodies (3 John 1:2). Prosperity from God’s perspective includes material goods as well as our relationships, health, and happiness, plus fruitfulness in His kingdom.

  • Proverbs 8:17-21 talks about “enduring riches and righteousness”—in other words, eternal wealth, such as knowing the Lord. What phrases in this passage indicate that earthly prosperity is included?
  • What characterizes God-given riches (Prov. 10:22)?

God provides for those of us who are His children—not simply for our own enjoyment, but also to enable our generosity to people in need.

  • This week, how could you bless another person with your spiritual, physical, or material riches?
  1. Good Health and a Long Life

Wisdom saves us from many difficulties in this life. It equips us to handle difficult circumstances and positions us to receive eternal rewards.

No one can promise another person a long life or healing from a particular disease. But in general, godly living is characterized by healthier living and length of days.

  • How does walking wisely affect your body (Prov. 3:7-8)?

Individuals who walk in wisdom utilize their time carefully because they view each day as valuable. They seek to use their gifts, talents, and other resources for God’s glory and His purposes. They take care of their bodies by getting physical exercise, adequate sleep, nutritious food, and sufficient relaxation.

  • In what way does the paragraph above not describe your life? What can you do this week to change that?

Closing: Wisdom saves us from many difficulties in this life. It equips us to handle difficult circumstances and positions us to receive eternal rewards. So discover and apply God’s wisdom for every situation—you won’t regret it.

Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank You for Your Word, which reveals how I am to live. Enable me to listen closely to Your voice, apply the principles of Scripture, and experience all the benefits of making wise choices. Amen.


Our Daily Bread – Pursuing Holiness




Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord. —Hebrews 12:14


Read: Romans 6:14-23
Bible in a Year: Deuteronomy 5-7; Mark 11:1-18

We often see surveys that ask people if they are happy, satisfied with their work, or enjoying life. But I’ve never seen an opinion poll that asked, “Are you holy?” How would you answer that question?

One Bible dictionary defines holiness as “separation to God and conduct fitting for those separated.” Author Frederick Buechner said that when writing about a person’s character, “nothing is harder to make real than holiness.” He adds that “holiness is not a human quality at all, like virtue. Holiness is . . . not something that people do, but something that God does in them.”

Romans 6 presents the stunning gift that God gives us through faith in Christ: “We were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life” (v.4). The pursuit of holiness occurs daily as we yield ourselves in obedience to the Lord instead of following our old ways of self-gratification. “Now you are free from the power of sin and have become slaves of God. Now you do those things that lead to holiness and result in eternal life” (v.22 nlt).

Are you becoming more holy? By God’s grace and power, the answer can be a resounding “Yes! More and more each day.” —David McCasland

Father, I want to cooperate with You in Your work of changing me to become more like Jesus. Help me to walk in Your ways. Without Your work in me, nothing of lasting value will occur in my growth in holiness.

The choice to pursue holiness is a matter of life or death.

Ravi Zacharias Ministry –  Think Again – Light in the Darkness 



The story is told of a cynic sitting under a nut tree, carrying on a jesting monologue with God. His grounds for complaint lay in what he considered to be an obvious failure on the part of God to go by the book on structural design. “Lord,” he said, “How is it that you made such a large and sturdy tree to hold such tiny, almost weightless nuts? And yet, you made small, tender plants to hold such large and weighty watermelons!”

As he chuckled at the folly of such disproportion in God’s mindless universe, a nut suddenly fell on his head. After a stunned pause, he muttered, “Thank God that wasn’t a watermelon!”

Even atheist Aldous Huxley acknowledged years ago, “Science has ‘explained’ nothing; the more we know, the more fantastic the world becomes, and the profounder the surrounding darkness.”

Justifiable worldviews must have explanatory power of the undeniable realities of life. As Christians who affirm the existence of a loving and all wise God, we long to push back the darkness in our world and to see the light of God’s Word soften the cynic and atheist alike. Yet if we are honest, sometimes we, too, struggle to come to terms with God’s world and his sovereign design; this is especially true in seasons of suffering and confusion.

Remember Job? He had become weary of his pain and sought a just answer for it. He built his argument to God on the fact that he needed to know what was going on, because only on the basis of that knowledge could his confusion and suffering be dissipated. But God then broke his silence, challenging Job’s very assumptions and reminding him that there was an awful lot he did not know but had just accepted and believed by inference. Notwithstanding the proverbial cynic under a nut tree, the argument from design is the very approach God used with Job. He reminded Job as a first step, and only that, that there were a thousand and one things he did not fully understand but had just taken for granted. In the light of God’s presence, Job was dumbfounded and confessed, “I am unworthy—how can I reply to you? … Surely I spoke of things I did not understand, things too wonderful for me to know” (Job 40:4; 42:3).

Gaining a small glimpse of the majesty and holiness of God is light in a dark world. The prophet Isaiah described his awe-stricken state when God revealed Himself to him. Isaiah, a morally good man, nevertheless fell on his face and immediately sensed that he was unfit to be in God’s presence. He was not just in the presence of someone better than he was. He was in the presence of the One by whom and because of whom all purity finds its point of reference. That is why he was speechless.

God is not merely good. God is holy. He is the transcendent source of goodness: not merely “better” in a hierarchy of choices but rather the very basis from which all differences are made. He dwells in ineffable light. Moral categories, for us, often move in comparisons and hierarchies. We talk in terms of judging or feeling that one thing is better than another. Our culture is more advanced morally than someone else’s culture, at least so we may think. However, God’s existence changes those categories and moves us to recognize the very essence of what the word “goodness” is based upon.

This difference is what makes the argument almost impossible for a skeptic to grasp. Holiness is not merely goodness. “Why did God not create us to choose only good?” “Why do bad things happen to good people?” The reality is that the opposite of evil, in degree, may be goodness. But the opposite of absolute evil, in kind, is absolute holiness. In the biblical context, the idea of holiness is the tremendous “otherness” of God Himself. God does not just reveal Himself as good; He reveals Himself as holy.

There is no contradiction in Him. He can never self-destruct. He can never “not be.” He exists eternally and in a sublime purity that transcends a hierarchy of categories. As human beings we love the concept of holiness when we are in the right, but we are often reticent to apply it when we are wrong and brought under the stark scrutiny of its light. I recall talking to a very successful businessman who throughout our conversation repeatedly asked, “But what about all the evil in this world?” Finally, a friend sitting next to me said to him, “I hear you constantly expressing a desire to see a solution to the problem of evil around you. Are you as troubled by the problem of evil within you?” In the pin-drop silence that followed, the man’s face showed his duplicity.

The longer I have encountered this question about evil, the more convinced I am of the disingenuousness of many a questioner. The darkness of evil is more than an exterior reality that engenders suffering in our world; it is, at its core, an internal reality that systemically builds us for autonomy and destruction, blinds us, and from which only God is big enough to rescue us. You see, the problem of evil begins with me. The darkness is within.

Yet Jesus’s answer to the question of the blind man in John 9 brings us extraordinary power and hope. There is an illustration and explanation for us in his story. Here was a man living in physical darkness. There was no light that he could see. People wanted to know, why was he born this way? They were the ones who could see, so they asked about the one who could not. Jesus responded that the man’s blindness was due neither to the sin of the man nor of his parents, but so that the glory of God might be displayed. The lesson is drastic; the message profound.

Physical darkness has physical consequences and leaves a person bereft of seeing physical reality. It is a tragedy—but nowhere near the tragic devastation of spiritual blindness. The healing of that man’s blindness by Jesus was intended to draw those spiritually blind to seek his healing of their souls. When Beethoven, though deaf, could see the exhilarating response of the people to his composition, he outwardly resonated with what his inner being prompted. He could not hear his music but he sensed the harmony for which he longed in expression. So it is with us. We know on the inside how impoverished we are and for what we long. That ought to prompt us to the riches that only God in Christ is able to give to us.

Only when we surrender to the light of God’s truth in our own lives are we enabled to truly seeand then be a beacon of hope and healing in our dark world. Truthfulness in the heart, said Jesus, precedes truth in the objective realm. The problem of evil has ultimately one source: it is the resistance to God’s holiness that enshrouds all of creation. And there is ultimately only one hope for life: that is through the glorious display of God at work within a human soul, bringing about his work of pushing away the darkness. That transformation tenderizes the heart to become part of the solution and not part of the problem. Such a transformation begins at the Cross.

The day when Christ was crucified and darkness engulfed the scene was symbolic of the soul in rebellion. Then came the possibility of hope when the Son rose, with life made possible for all of us. The simple verse, John 3:16, says it all: “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” “For God”: the starting point is filial. “So loved”: his reach is relational. “That he gave his only begotten Son”: sacrificial. “That whosoever believes in Him”: confessional. “Should not perish”: judicial. “But have everlasting life”: eternal.

There is a law unto death. The violation of law brings that within us. Our holy God deals with evil in us to transform us and draw us into his life and embrace. What a glorious gospel this is.

The songwriter Tim Hughes says it beautifully:

Light of the world, You stepped down into darkness

opened my eyes, let me see.

Beauty that made this heart adore you

hope of a life spent with you.


Here I am to worship, here I am to bow down,

here I am to say that you’re my God.

You’re altogether lovely, altogether worthy,

altogether wonderful to me.


In a unique way, seeing is believing. Believing in God is surrendering. Surrendering to God is worshiping. To worship opens up vistas to see even more. Darkness is then vanquished.

In a dark world, we have the offer of Light through Jesus Christ.

Alistair Begg – His Superlative Beauty


Through many tribulations we must enter the kingdom of God.  Acts 14:22

 God’s people have their trials. It was never God’s plan, when He chose His people, that they should be untested. They were chosen in the furnace of affliction; they were never chosen for worldly peace and earthly joy. Freedom from sickness and the pains of mortality was never promised to them; but when their Lord drew up the charter of privileges, He included chastisements among the things to which they should inevitably be heirs.

Trials are a part of our experience; they were predestinated for us in Christ’s last legacy. As surely as the stars are fashioned by His hands, and their orbits fixed by Him, so surely are our trials allotted to us. He has ordained their season and their place, their intensity and the effect they shall have upon us. Good men must never expect to escape troubles; if they do, they will be disappointed, for none of their predecessors have been without them.

Consider the patience of Job; remember Abraham, for he had his trials, and facing them with faith, he became the father of the faithful. Review the biographies of all the patriarchs, prophets, apostles, and martyrs, and you will find that each of those whom God made vessels of mercy were made to pass through the fire of affliction.

God has ordained that the cross of trouble should be engraved on every vessel of mercy, as the royal insignia distinguishing the King’s vessels of honor. But even though tribulation is the path of God’s children, they have the comfort of knowing that their Master has walked it before them. They have His presence and sympathy to cheer them, His grace to support them, and His example to teach them how to endure; and when they reach “the kingdom,” it will more than make amends for the “many tribulations” through which they passed to enter it.

Today’s Bible Reading

The family reading plan for March 8, 2015
* Exodus 19
Luke 22

Devotional material is taken from “Morning and Evening,” written by C.H. Spurgeon, revised and updated by Alistair Begg.

Charles Spurgeon – A faithful friend


“There is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother.” Proverbs 18:24

Suggested Further Reading: Proverbs 27:6-10

You have a friend, have you? Yes; and he keeps a pair of horses, and has a good establishment. Ah! but your best way to prove your friend is to know that he will be your friend when you have not so much as a mean cottage; and when homeless and without clothing, you are driven to beg for your bread. Thus you would make true proof of a friend. Give me a friend who was born in the winter time, whose cradle was rocked in the storm; he will last. Our fair weather friends shall flee away from us. I had rather have a robin for a friend than a swallow; for a swallow abides with us only in the summer time, but a robin cometh to us in the winter. Those are tight friends that will come the nearest to us when we are in the most distress; but those are not friends who speed themselves away when ill times come. Believer, have you reason to fear that Christ will leave you now? Has he not been with you in the house of mourning? You found your friend where men find pearls, “In caverns deep, where darkness dwells;” you found Jesus in your hour of trouble. It was on the bed of sickness that you first learned the value of his name; it was in the hour of mental anguish that you first did lay hold of the hem of his garment; and since then, your nearest and sweetest intercourse has been held with him in hours of darkness. Well then, such a friend, proved in the house of sorrow—a friend who gave his heart’s blood for you, and let his soul run out in one great river of blood—such a friend never can and never will forsake you; he sticketh closer than a brother.

For meditation: God offered us the hand of friendship when we were his enemies (Romans 5:10)—it cost the Lord Jesus Christ his life to make us his friends (John 15:13-15). How much do you display your side of the friendship in a world which has no time for the cause of Christ (James 4:4)?

Sermon no. 120
8 March (1857)

John MacArthur – Confessing Your Sins


“I prayed to the Lord my God and confessed” (Dan. 9:4).

Confession brings forgiveness and guards God’s character.

Confessing your sins means you agree with God that you have offended His holy character, are worthy of punishment, and in need of forgiveness. That’s exactly what we see Daniel doing in verses 5-16. Verse 20 summarizes his prayer: “I was speaking and praying, and confessing my sin and the sin of my people Israel, and presenting my supplication before the Lord my God.”

Unlike some who suffer God’s chastening, Daniel didn’t shift the blame for Israel’s calamity. Instead he admitted that his people had willfully disobeyed God’s Word and ignored His prophets, thereby bringing judgment upon themselves. Once they were a nation blessed by God; now they were aliens and captives in a foreign land. God had kept His promise to curse them if they disobeyed Him (Deut. 28:15).

In verses 12-15 Daniel analyzes the consequences of Israel’s sin, which included her captivity and the guilt she bore for her arrogance and reluctance to repent.

Verse 14 reflects perhaps the most important aspect of confession: Daniel’s affirmation that “the Lord our God is righteous with respect to all His deeds which He has done.” The Gentile nations knew that the Israelites were God’s chosen people. Surely the fall of Jerusalem raised questions about God’s character: What kind of God would stand idly by while His people are ravaged and His Temple plundered? What is the benefit of having a God like that? This, in effect, is Daniel’s response: “God is righteous in everything He does. We deserve this punishment, so don’t accuse Him of acting unjustly.”

Confession therefore serves a dual purpose: it brings forgiveness and frees God to chasten us without bringing accusations of inequity or injustice upon Himself.

Daniel’s prayer came at a special time in Israel’s history, but undoubtedly confession was a regular part of his life. That should be your pattern as well. Don’t wait until disaster strikes before you confess your sin. Make it a daily practice.

Suggestions for Prayer; If you have not developed a systematic approach to prayer, the “ACTS” format is a good way to start.

  • Adoration—praising God
  • Confession—confessing sin
  • Thanksgiving—thanking God
  • Supplication—praying for others

For Further Study; Read about David’s sin in 2 Samuel 11:1—12:25 and his confession in Psalm 51. What are the similarities and differences between David’s confession and Daniel’s?

Joyce Meyer – Find Quiet Time


The [reverent] fear of the Lord is clean, enduring forever; the ordinances of the Lord are true and righteous altogether. More to be desired are they than gold, even than much fine gold; they are sweeter also than honey and drippings from the honeycomb. – Psalm 19:9–10

Sometimes I set aside the entire day just to be with God. I stop everything and seek Him. I know I am not going to hear from God if I don’t get quiet on purpose by that time set aside for Him.

It is so important to have some “down time” to be alone and just sit quietly. You may think you don’t have time, but if somebody was giving out thousand-dollar bills at the mall, you would find time to get there. Don’t use the time to try to figure out something; just be still and available to the Lord’s attention.


Campus Crusade for Christ; Bill Bright – You Can Bear It


“There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able: but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it” (1 Corinthians 10:13, KJV).

I find great comfort and encouragement in this promise from God, one of my favorite Scriptures. Believing in this promise has saved me from falling into sin more times than I could ever begin to count.

As Christians, we are on the offensive. We do not have to cringe, trembling in our boots, wondering when Satan is going to attack again and what form it will take. We are the ones on the move. We are to be the aggressors, for we have God’s promise that the gates of hell shall not prevail against us (Matthew 16:18).

There is no stronghold of Satan that cannot be recaptured for our Lord, who promises to fight for us. God’s Word reminds us that all authority in heaven and on earth is given to the Lord Jesus, and He promises always to be with us, never to leave us.

Satan would have you believe that there is no hope for you. You are discouraged, you have financial problems physical problems, sorrow from losing loved ones. The whole world seems to be caving in on you, and Satan says, “God doesn’t love or care for you. He can’t help you. You’re on your own. You might as well give up.”

When that temptation comes, we cry out to God in believing prayer and we resist the enemy who is the author of depression. He is the author of negative thinking. He is the author of criticism, lies and all things that are contrary to the will of God.

If we are going to take a proper offense, we must live in the power of the Holy Spirit. That is the reason our Savior – after commanding the disciples to go and preach the gospel to all men everywhere – also commanded them to wait in Jerusalem until they were endued with power from on high. “Ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth” (Act 1:8, KJV).

The key to escaping temptation and resisting sin is faith in the faithfulness of God to keep His promise that you will not be tempted more than you are able to bear.

Bible Reading: I Corinthians 10:9-12

TODAY’S ACTION POINT:  I will not go into the spiritual battle unarmed, but will count on God’s Holy Spirit to make a way of escape when temptation comes. I will tell others how they too can be victorious over temptation.

Presidential Prayer Team; P.G. – Truth Measure


A recent Charisma Magazine article warned that “believers reject moral absolutes for what feels right.” They are falling prey to the relativism of the world’s system. Another study by George Barna said 22 percent of adults believe in moral absolutes; and among those who claim to be born again, only 32 percent. How far God’s people have come from the time of martyr John Huss (1370-1415); he said, “Seek the truth. Listen to the truth. Teach the truth. Love the truth. Abide by the truth and defend the truth…Unto death.”

For my mouth will utter truth; wickedness is an abomination to my lips.

Proverbs 8:7

How well do you measure yourself when it comes to standing for absolute truth in this relative age? Have you let the world squeeze you into its mold? Do you fear social backlash for calling evil by its name? Founding Father Alexander Hamilton said, “Those who stand for nothing fall for anything.”

Be encouraged by Jesus’ high priestly prayer when He asked the Father to keep His children in the truth. Know truth by studying His Word of truth – the Bible. Pray that God would illuminate His words for you…and that those who lead America would be courageous and stand for absolute truth.

Recommended Reading: John 17:6-17

Night Life – Two Sides of Passion


The wife’s body does not belong to her alone but also to her husband. In the same way, her husband’s body does not belong to him alone but also to his wife. 1 Corinthians 7:4

T here’s a basic difference between women and men that marriage partners need to understand: Women tend to give sex to get intimacy, while men tend to give intimacy to get sex.

Many men, for example, can separate the act of intercourse from the relationship and feel some measure of physical satisfaction. Not so for most women. More relationally inclined, they often feel exploited when sexual relations are not accompanied by tenderness, caring, and romantic love.

Solutions? The man who wants an exciting sexual experience with his wife should focus on the other twenty‐three and a half hours in the day. He should compliment her, tell her that he cares, and make her feel special in a hundred different ways. Turning the coin over, the wife must understand that her husband is more visually oriented and easily stimulated than she is. She should make herself as attractive to him as she can.

With a little unselfish forethought, each can learn to satisfy the other. In our experience, responding to these basic differences opens the door for genuine passion in marriage.

Just between us…

  • Do you agree that men and women approach sex differently?
  • Do we understand each other’s feelings about sex and intimacy?
  • Why do you think God created these differences in men and women?
  • What can I do specifically to make sex more appealing to you?

Lord, help us to hold our differences about sexual attraction in high regard— never hindering where we could help, never ignoring or criticizing where we could cherish and honor. Thank You that we can give ourselves to each other so completely. Amen.

From Night Light For Couples, by Dr. James & Shirley Dobson