Charles Stanley – The Truth About the Trinity

 

John 14:16-20

Does the Holy Spirit seem mysterious to you? While the Bible speaks often of God the Father and God the Son, God the Spirit is not mentioned as much. Yet His personhood and work is just as important as the other two members of the Trinity.

The Godhead is composed of three distinct persons, each fully God with the same divine attributes but different roles. Each one plays a crucial part in the salvation of
a soul.

  • The heavenly Father’s holiness and justice demand that the penalty for sin must be paid.
    • The Son became the sinless sacrifice that satisfied the just demands of the Father.
    • The Spirit convicts and regenerates the sinner to believe and call on the Lord for salvation.

When Jesus was soon to finish His mission on earth, He promised to send the disciples another Helper, the Holy Spirit. God the Spirit is so important to us that Jesus said, “It is to your advantage that I go away … if I go, I will send Him to you” (John 16:7). He’s the Spirit of truth who interprets God’s Word for us, and helps us remember and apply it to our life (John 14:26; John 16:13). He’s also our encourager, and He empowers us to obey.

The Holy Spirit doesn’t bring attention to Himself but always seeks to glorify Jesus (John 16:14). Perhaps that’s why He seems harder to know. But if we look closely, we will see how His fingers lovingly mold—just as a potter’s do to clay—guiding us, challenging us, and transforming us.

Bible in One Year: 1 Chronicles 25-27

 

http://www.intouch.org/

Our Daily Bread — The Point of No Return

 

Read: James 3:1–12 | Bible in a Year: 2 Kings 7–9; John 1:1–28

The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole body. James 3:6

It wasn’t as simple as just crossing another river. By law, no Roman general could lead armed troops into Rome. So when Julius Caesar led his Thirteenth Legion across the Rubicon River and into Italy in 49 bc, it was an act of treason. The impact of Caesar’s decision was irreversible, generating years of civil war before Rome’s great general became absolute ruler. Still today, the phrase “crossing the Rubicon” is a metaphor for “passing the point of no return.”

Sometimes we can cross a relational Rubicon with the words we say to others. Once spoken, words can’t be taken back. They can either offer help and comfort or do damage that feels just as irreversible as Caesar’s march on Rome. James gave us another word picture about words when he said, “The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole body, sets the whole course of one’s life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell” (James 3:6).

When words become weapons, our relationships soon become casualties.

When we fear we have crossed a Rubicon with someone, we can seek their forgiveness—and God’s (Matthew 5:23–24; 1 John 1:9). But even better is to daily rest in God’s Spirit, hearing Paul’s challenge, “Let your conversation be always full of grace” (Colossians 4:6), so that our words will not only honor our Lord, but lift up and encourage those around us.

Lord, please guard my heart and my words today. May I speak only words that please You and bring health and healing to others.

Read What Do You Do with a Broken Relationship? at discoveryseries.org/q0703.

When words become weapons, our relationships soon become casualties.

By Bill Crowder

INSIGHT

The very practical book of James contains much instruction about the wise use of our words:

“Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry” (1:19). “Those who consider themselves religious and yet do not keep a tight rein on their tongues deceive themselves, and their religion is worthless” (1:26). “Brothers and sisters, do not slander one another” (4:11).

Why is James’s teaching to watch our words crucial for honoring God and people?

Arthur Jackson

 

http://www.odb.org

Ravi Zacharias Ministry – Unhindered

My high school band director was adamant about many things, but none so much as what he called the obligatory rule of good musicianship. That is, the two most important notes in any musical composition are the first and the last. “The audience might forgive you for a bad note that comes in the middle,” he would say, “but they will forget neither your very first impression nor your final remark.”

The last word of the book of Acts in the Greek New Testament is the word akolutos. The word literally means “unhindered,” though many translations render it with multiple words because of its complexity. Others move the word from its final position for the sake of syntax. In both cases, I think something is lost in translation. Luke was intentionally making a statement with this last word of his two-volume testimony to the life of Jesus Christ. I think he intended readers to pause at the conclusion of his words, the very last note in his testimony the provocative thought of the gospel unhindered, the Spirit of God continually improvising with a tune that will not be shushed or silenced. After the stories of Jesus’s ministry were told, after recollections of his death and ruminations of his resurrection, after Jesus’s ascension and the church’s beginnings, after all the resistance, disappointment, and surprises along the way, Luke concludes: “Then Paul dwelt two whole years in his own rented house, and received all who came to him, preaching the kingdom of God and teaching the things which concern the Lord Jesus Christ with all confidence, unhindered.“(1)

Continue reading Ravi Zacharias Ministry – Unhindered

Joyce Meyer – Shake It Off!

 

Then Paul [simply] shook the creature off into the fire and suffered no ill effects.

— Acts 28:5

Adapted from the resource Ending Your Day Right Devotional – by Joyce Meyer

Acts 28:3-5 contains a powerful lesson.

It says: But when Paul had gathered a bundle of sticks and laid them on the fire, a viper crawled out because of the heat and fastened itself on his hand. When the natives saw the creature hanging from his hand, they began saying to one another, “Undoubtedly this man is a murderer, and though he has been saved from the sea, Justice [the avenging goddess] has not permitted him to live.” Then Paul [simply] shook the creature off into the fire and suffered no ill effects.

When Paul was shipwrecked on the island of Malta, a deadly snake that was driven out by the heat of the fire bit him. He simply shook the creature off into the flames. You should follow Paul’s example and do the same in your own life. Whatever may be troubling you, shake it off!

God has great things planned for you. The dreams of the future leave no room for the snakebites of the past.

Prayer Starter: Father, right now I ask for Your help to “shake off” the disappointments, offenses, and issues from the past. Help me each day to forget what lies behind and press on toward the great things You have for my future (see Philippians 3:13). In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

 

http://www.joycemeyer.org

Campus Crusade for Christ; Bill Bright – All Who Win Souls Are Wise

 

“Godly men are growing a tree that bears life-giving fruit, and all who win souls are wise” (Proverbs 11:30).

I have never led anyone to Christ, and I never shall.

However, I have had the privilege of praying with thousands of people who have received Christ as a result of my witness.

When a person receives Christ, it is the work of the Holy Spirit. That is why I cannot boast over much fruit or be discouraged over little fruit.

The responsibility for fruit belongs to the Holy Spirit who works in and through the believer, producing fruit and changing the lives of those who respond favorably to our witness.

The power of our Lord Jesus Christ is available to all who trust and obey Him. We need to “understand how incredibly great His power is to help those who believe Him.”

The Lord Jesus commissioned the disciples to go into all the world and preach the gospel, with the promise that He would always be with them.

Bible Reading:Proverbs 11:24-31

TODAY’S ACTION POINT: Today I will consciously draw upon the supernatural resources of the Holy Spirit to obey God’s commands for holy living and fruitful witnessing.

 

http://www.cru.org

Max Lucado – Your Kindness Quotient

 

Listen to Today’s Devotion

I’ve attended my share of seminars on strategizing and team building. But I can’t say I’ve ever attended or even heard of one lecture on kindness. Jesus, however, would take issue with our priorities. “Go and learn what this means,” he commands. “I want kindness more than I want animal sacrifices” (Matthew 9:13).

How kind are you? Which person is the most overlooked or avoided? A shy student? A grumpy employee? And here’s a challenge—what about your enemies? How kind are you to those who want what you want or take what you have? How about the boss who fired you or the wife who left you. Mercy is the deepest gesture of kindness. The Apostle Paul said, “Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you!” (Ephesians 4:32).

Read more A Love Worth Giving

For more inspirational messages please visit Max Lucado.

http://www.maxlucado.com

Denison Forum – Advice from a man without arms

This headline caught my eye: “I was born with no arms and thought I was a hopeless mistake–and then this happened . . .”

Daniel Ritchie is a husband, a father of two, and a Christian speaker and writer. He is also a bit unusual in that he eats with his feet, drives with his feet, and brushes his teeth with his feet. As he explains, “I do everything with my feet because I was born without arms.”

People have not always been sympathetic. He has been called names. He remembers a rude kid at Disney World. And the time he and his parents were asked to leave a restaurant because of the way he has to eat.

Daniel writes that, as a teenager, “The words of others began to warp my perception of the value of my life. I felt like damaged goods, broken and unlovable. Isolation and darkness were beginning to sweep over me. I started to hate myself and other people.”

A shift in perspective changed everything

Then he found a verse in Scripture where David prayed to God, “I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well” (Psalm 139:14).

Continue reading Denison Forum – Advice from a man without arms