Daily Reading: July 10th


#DailyDevotion Be The Least That The Lord May Use You

July 10th

Read Judg 6:1–24

Jdg 6:1  The people of Israel did what was evil in the sight of the LORD, and the LORD gave them into the hand of Midian seven years. Jdg 6:7-10  When the people of Israel cried out to the LORD on account of the Midianites,  (8)  the LORD sent a prophet to the people of Israel. And he said to them, “Thus says the LORD, the God of Israel: I led you up from Egypt and brought you out of the house of slavery.  (9)  And I delivered you from the hand of the Egyptians and from the hand of all who oppressed you, and drove them out before you and gave you their land.  (10)  And I said to you, ‘I am the LORD your God; you shall not fear the gods of the Amorites in whose land you dwell.’ But you have not obeyed my voice.” Jdg 6:13-16  And Gideon said to him, “Please, sir, if the LORD is with us, why then has all this happened to us? And where are all his wonderful deeds that our fathers recounted to us, saying, ‘Did not the LORD bring us up from Egypt?’ But now the LORD has forsaken us and given us into the hand of Midian.”  (14)  And the LORD turned to him and said, “Go in this might of yours and save Israel from the hand of Midian; do not I send you?”  (15)  And he said to him, “Please, Lord, how can I save Israel? Behold, my clan is the weakest in Manasseh, and I am the least in my father’s house.”  (16)  And the LORD said to him, “But I will be with you, and you shall strike the Midianites as one man.”

 

It really is sad when we read through Judges how the people continually rebel against the Lord their God.  But really is it any different today?  How many times a life, year, month, day and hour do we rebel against God and do what we want to do?  How often do we put our trust in things other than our maker?  I dare say it is way too often.  And when we do does the Lord discipline us like he did Israel?  Hebrews 12 would seem to indicate the Lord will discipline us if we are his children.

 

Now where we will get really messed up here in our thinking is the whole obedience thing.  We start thinking if we just start obeying the commandments then the Lord will be pleased with us.  That couldn’t be further from the truth.  Just look at the Pharisees.  They were really obedient to the Law but Jesus certainly wasn’t pleased with them.  No, obedience to the Lord must come from trusting in the Lord.  It is our faith, our trust that the Lord wants.  Israel didn’t obey because they didn’t trust the Lord.  It was their lack of faith that was disturbing.  Same thing with the Pharisees.   They didn’t trust Jesus so even what looked like obedience was not from the Spirit, it was not the fruit of faith.  Even their “good works” were not pleasing to the Lord.

 

The Lord in our account today hears the cries of the Israelites who repent and are turning to him for help.  He calls up Gideon to be a judge over Israel.  Gideon thinks the Lord picked the wrong person.  He doesn’t have a large army to command and he is the “least” in his father’s house.  But that’s exactly who the Lord works with, the least, the foolish, those who are not to bring salvation.  Indeed, Jesus in order to win salvation for us becomes the one who is Not, even to the point of death to win the victory over sin, death and the power of the devil.

 

In our dealings with life and with others, particularly as we witness our faith to them, it would  be good to be like Gideon and Jesus.  Let us become the least, the weak and like those who are not and let God’s Word, the Gospel of Jesus Christ, the good news that Jesus is the Love of God for us.  Let us share the good news that we are acceptable to God on account of Christ and that faith is what pleases him.  From that trust obedience will follow.

 

Lord God, heavenly Father, you called the people of Israel to repentance through trials and tribulations because they did not trust you.  Grant us such repentance and faith that we may not fall away like they did but may your Holy Spirit through the gospel give us such trust in You that we turn not to created things that obedience may flow from such faith. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Daily Reading: July 9th


#DailyDevotion If Men Don’t Do Their Responsibility He Will Raise Up Women To Do It, To Their Shame

July 9th

Read Judg 4:1–24

Jdg 4:4-9  Now Deborah, a prophetess, the wife of Lappidoth, was judging Israel at that time.  (5)  She used to sit under the palm of Deborah between Ramah and Bethel in the hill country of Ephraim, and the people of Israel came up to her for judgment.  (6)  She sent and summoned Barak the son of Abinoam from Kedesh-naphtali and said to him, “Has not the LORD, the God of Israel, commanded you, ‘Go, gather your men at Mount Tabor, taking 10,000 from the people of Naphtali and the people of Zebulun.  (7)  And I will draw out Sisera, the general of Jabin’s army, to meet you by the river Kishon with his chariots and his troops, and I will give him into your hand’?”  (8)  Barak said to her, “If you will go with me, I will go, but if you will not go with me, I will not go.”  (9)  And she said, “I will surely go with you. Nevertheless, the road on which you are going will not lead to your glory, for the LORD will sell Sisera into the hand of a woman.” Then Deborah arose and went with Barak to Kedesh.

 

Isa 3:11-12  Woe to the wicked! It shall be ill with him, for what his hands have dealt out shall be done to him.  (12)  My people—infants are their oppressors, and women rule over them. O my people, your guides mislead you and they have swallowed up the course of your paths.

 

Sure it may sounds sexist or misogynistic but the fact is, it is a shame for women to rule over men.  At least it is shameful for the men.  The people of Israel had rejected the Lord again and the Lord had placed over them as judge Deborah.  The Lord gave her the gift of prophecy so she could fulfill this vocation.  As judge she calls the general of the armies of Israel to go and make battle against Sisera who was oppressing them.

 

Now Barak, while believing and obeying the command of Deborah refuses to go unless she is with him.  Her promise from the Lord is not enough. He needs her presence to go into battle.  This is not lost on Deborah.  Because of this, she and the Lord will not hand Sisera over to Barak in victory.  Barak will win the victory in battle but the ultimate victory will fall into the hands of another woman Jael. Jdg 4:21  “But Jael the wife of Heber took a tent peg, and took a hammer in her hand. Then she went softly to him and drove the peg into his temple until it went down into the ground while he was lying fast asleep from weariness. So he died.”

 

God has ordained that the responsibility of headship belongs to men.  If men will not step up to their responsibility and lead as the Lord has intended the Lord can lift up women to do what men refuse to do.  We remember it was the women who stayed with Jesus at the cross (excepting John), it was women who went to the tomb and it was women who first proclaimed the good news of the resurrection.  Why?  Because the power of God’s Word is not dependent upon the strength of men, reason, wisdom, nor anything else in all creation.  Its power is in itself and He can choose the weakest of vessels 1 Pet. 3:7 (and often prefers that to demonstrate His might) to accomplish His purposes.

 

Indeed it is only we are at our weakest point, when we are powerless that the power of the Gospel does its greatest work on us.  When we are utterly defeated by sin, death and the devil, the good news of the free gift of salvation on account of Christ brings us the ultimate victory, life and salvation.

 

Lord Jesus Christ, we pray that those who have been given the responsibility of headship would rise to the occasion trusting in your promises.  Never-the-less, in our weakness may we ever trust in your divine promises and live our life according to them. Amen.

Daily Reading: July 8th


#DailyDevotion What gods Did You Sell Yourself To Today?

July 8th

Read Judg 3:7–31

Jdg 3:7-11  And the people of Israel did what was evil in the sight of the LORD. They forgot the LORD their God and served the Baals and the Asheroth.  (8)  Therefore the anger of the LORD was kindled against Israel, and he sold them into the hand of Cushan-rishathaim king of Mesopotamia. And the people of Israel served Cushan-rishathaim eight years.  (9)  But when the people of Israel cried out to the LORD, the LORD raised up a deliverer for the people of Israel, who saved them, Othniel the son of Kenaz, Caleb’s younger brother.  (10)  The Spirit of the LORD was upon him, and he judged Israel. He went out to war, and the LORD gave Cushan-rishathaim king of Mesopotamia into his hand. And his hand prevailed over Cushan-rishathaim.  (11)  So the land had rest forty years. Then Othniel the son of Kenaz died.

 

The book of Judges is like an example of our lives at times as Christians.  In the time of the Judges time and again Israel fell away from its devotion to the Lord and worshipped the idols, the false gods of the land.  For some reason or another, the Lord who had mightily demonstrated his salvation to the people was forgotten.

 

So the Lord sends evil people, the very people they’re worshipping with, to punish and enslave them.  For idol worship is nothing but slavery to sin, the fear of death and Satan.  He gives them what they want.  But after a time the people cry out to the Lord like an alcoholic at the throne in the bathroom praying, “Lord if you get me out of trouble this time, I swear I’ll never do it again.”

 

And shockingly, the Lord sends a judge to save his people, to deliver them from the hands of their enemies.  After some time the people fall away again and fall into the same old traps of idolatry and false religions.  Now a judge in the Hebrew is not like a court room judge.  A judge for the Hebrews is a savior.  Now each of these judges in the book of Judges previews Jesus for us because Jesus is our Judge.

 

Like the Israelites whom the Lord left some of their enemies in the area to test them and train them for war, the Lord left us with our sinful nature having delivered us from sin, death and the power of the devil.  Indeed the sinful nature is there to test and try our faith, to purify it.  We like the Israelites are going to fall into sin.  We will repeat our old bad habits.  We will return to the false gods and false religions we have made up in our hearts and we will trust those rather than the Judge, Jesus Christ to be with us, provide for us and deliver us in our lives.  Jesus will let us.  He will let us dig a hole so deep for ourselves that we won’t know up from down.  Then what will be do?

 

Will we confess our sins and admit our faults?  Will we trust Jesus to deliver us and to turn to him again?  Will we finally cast off some of those idols of our hearts and replace them with Jesus?  Jesus promises us to call upon him in the day of trouble and he will deliver us.  Do not be afraid to call upon Jesus one more time while you still have breath upon your lips.  It is Jesus’ greatest desire to deliver you and save you.  Now is the day of salvation. Today is the day of deliverance.

 

Lord Jesus Christ, grant us such faith in you that we do not return to our sinful ways or listen to our flesh.  But also grant us repentance that when we do fall into sin we have the faith to call upon you for forgiveness and salvation.  Amen.

Daily Readings: July 7th


#DailyDevotion Are You Going To Forget The Lord Too?

July 7th

Judg 2:6–23

Jdg 2:10  And all that generation also were gathered to their fathers. And there arose another generation after them who did not know the LORD or the work that he had done for Israel…12 And they abandoned the LORD, the God of their fathers, who had brought them out of the land of Egypt. They went after other gods, from among the gods of the peoples who were around them, and bowed down to them. And they provoked the LORD to anger.  (13)  They abandoned the LORD and served the Baals and the Ashtaroth.  (14)  So the anger of the LORD was kindled against Israel, and he gave them over to plunderers, who plundered them. And he sold them into the hand of their surrounding enemies, so that they could no longer withstand their enemies…

 

This chapter sums up what would happen for the rest of the book of Judges. It pretty much sums up the history of Israel to this very day. Somebody didn’t do their job, namely the fathers of the people of Israel. It was given to them to teach their children the ways of the Lord, what the Lord had done for them and how the Lord wanted them to live. When the fathers of God’s people do not fulfill their vocation then their children arise who do not know the Lord and they will chase after other gods. As the Lord had promised when this happens, He will turn them over to the people whose gods they worship and they shall oppress them. Yet the Lord is merciful. When he hears their cries he raised up judges for them. It is written: 18 “Whenever the LORD raised up judges for them, the LORD was with the judge, and he saved them from the hand of their enemies all the days of the judge. For the LORD was moved to pity by their groaning because of those who afflicted and oppressed them.”

And yet they were and are a hardheaded, stiff-necked people. It is written: (19) “But whenever the judge died, they turned back and were more corrupt than their fathers, going after other gods, serving them and bowing down to them. They did not drop any of their practices or their stubborn ways.” And so we have the history of the Judges where the people continually fall away and repent and fall away. The Israelites in the time of the kings do the same thing. The Lord sends the Assyrians to send into exile the northern tribes. Later He sends the Babylonians to punish the southern tribes and destroys his temple as they go into exile. Finally, when the Lord fulfills His promise and becomes one of them in the flesh, the man, the Lord Jesus Christ, they reject him as well and the temple is destroyed again and they are dispersed throughout the world.

 

Time and again, we have not fulfilled our roles as parents and have not instructed our children in the knowledge of Jesus Christ. Without this knowledge they fall away and worship other gods as well. We ourselves forget the Lord and fall away and chase after other gods, gods of our own imagination and serve them, thinking they will give us the things our hearts desire. Yet we will not be dispersed for we already are. Yet we are given over to serve the things we chase after and they wreck havoc on our lives.

 

Grant us true repentance Father that we remain faithful to you and your son Jesus Christ. Amen

Daily Reading: July 7th


#DailyDevotion Who Will You Serve Today?

June 6th
Read Josh 24:1–31
Jos 24:16-24  Then the people answered, “Far be it from us that we should forsake the LORD to serve other gods,  (17)  for it is the LORD our God who brought us and our fathers up from the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery, and who did those great signs in our sight and preserved us in all the way that we went, and among all the peoples through whom we passed.  (18)  And the LORD drove out before us all the peoples, the Amorites who lived in the land. Therefore we also will serve the LORD, for he is our God.”  (19)  But Joshua said to the people, “You are not able to serve the LORD, for he is a holy God. He is a jealous God; he will not forgive your transgressions or your sins.  (20)  If you forsake the LORD and serve foreign gods, then he will turn and do you harm and consume you, after having done you good.”  (21)  And the people said to Joshua, “No, but we will serve the LORD.”  (22)  Then Joshua said to the people, “You are witnesses against yourselves that you have chosen the LORD, to serve him.” And they said, “We are witnesses.”  (23)  He said, “Then put away the foreign gods that are among you, and incline your heart to the LORD, the God of Israel.”  (24)  And the people said to Joshua, “The LORD our God we will serve, and his voice we will obey.”

Joshua recounts the history of the Israelites. It includes all the ways the Lord their God has blessed them. Having concluded his gospel he declares that he and his household will serve the Lord only. He tells them if they will serve the Lord they need to get rid of their other gods since the Lord is a jealous God. The people respond to the gospel, the good news of the Lord’s salvation of them and their deliverance into the promised land with shouts of the same which Joshua spoke.

He tells them they can’t possibly serve the Lord. He will not put up with rivals. He warns them about what will happen to them if they say they will serve the Lord and then turn the back on him and serve other gods. This does not deter them. They pledge all the more to serve the Lord.

I’m certain they were sincere. They were just as sincere as many who are brought to the Lord Jesus Christ, are saved by him and then they pronounce their loyalty to him. Yet many, like the Israelites eventually turn away. They are enticed by other gods. What other gods entice us away from Jesus? Pride, self-esteem, alcohol, drugs, sex, laziness, the bed, golf-course, kids, wife, husband, fishing, secular humanism, science, money and wealth and ad infinitum. Whatever can capture our hearts, it often does.

Of course we don’t always completely turn away. Like the Israelites who had their household gods and also worshipped the Lord as well, many of us serve these other gods alongside worshipping Jesus. But Jesus is jealous for us! He will not allow these things to worshipped alongside him. He will turn us over to them until they turn on us and we turn to him for help. Jesus will be there to help us. But will we accept his help? Better with his help just to get rid of those attachments to those gods today and trust only in Jesus.

Lord Jesus Christ, unless you grant it to us, we cannot turn away from trusting other gods. Grant us such faith in you that we trust only in you for all things in all our life and use created things properly for the purposes you have created them. Amen.

DailyReading: July 5th


#DailyDevotion Don’t Go To The Left Or To The Right Of God’s Word

July 5th

Josh 23:1–16

Jos 23:6-8  Therefore, be very strong to keep and to do all that is written in the Book of the Law of Moses, turning aside from it neither to the right hand nor to the left,  (7)  that you may not mix with these nations remaining among you or make mention of the names of their gods or swear by them or serve them or bow down to them,  (8)  but you shall cling to the LORD your God just as you have done to this day…11  Be very careful, therefore, to love the LORD your God.

 

Joshua’s life was at an end. Most the land that had been promised had been defeated and taken. The rest will finally be fully taken by the time of David and it would take so long because Israel would not be faithful to the Lord. That is what Joshua reminds Israel. He calls them to be strong and keep all that is written in the Book of the Law of Moses. They were to stay straight on the path. They were to add nothing to it or subtract from it.

 

He also warned them against mixing with the nations they were overtaking. If they did they may take up the names of their gods and worship them. This would be unacceptable. They were to cling to the Lord their God and serve and love him alone. But they would not. Over the period of several hundred years, the Lord was patient the Israelites hoping they would repent of their wickedness, but they would not. Eventually, the Lord would disperse the northern tribes never to be seen or heard of again and the southern tribes of Judah would be sent into exile and eventually return home to rebuild, so the Messiah, the Savior and the Redeemer of the world would be born in Bethlehem, live and die for the Jews and the whole world.

 

Before Jesus’ ascension, the second Joshua, he told his disciples to Mat 28:20 “… to observe all that I have commanded you.” We are to cling to Jesus the Lord as well. He promises that if we confess him before man he will confess us before the Father, but if we deny him before men, he will deny us before the Father. And we should entangle ourselves with unbelievers (not that we have no dealings with them). But in marriage and other close contacts (perhaps partnerships) we should marry only Christians (if we’re single). Paul says, 2Co 6:14 “Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. For what partnership has righteousness with lawlessness? Or what fellowship has light with darkness?”

 

Like the Law of Moses, we should not go to the left of Jesus’ word or to the right. He alone is the narrow way. He is the only gate into the true Promised Land through which we may enter. Our love for Jesus and for the Father is expressed by our love for our brothers and our love for our enemies. We do trusting in Jesus’ promises to us and because he has shown us the love, mercy and kindness of the Father towards us when we were opposed to him. But now that we know Him and are known by Him, we cling to our Lord Jesus Christ.

 

Help us Heavenly Father by your grace to always be faithful to you and your Son Jesus Christ with his teaching, that we may possess the eternal Promised Land. Amen.

Daily Reading: July 4th


#DailyDevotion Don’t You Want God To Fight All Your Battles

July 4

Josh 10:1–25

Jos 10:8  And the LORD said to Joshua, “Do not fear them, for I have given them into your hands. Not a man of them shall stand before you.”…11 And as they fled before Israel, while they were going down the ascent of Beth-horon, the LORD threw down large stones from heaven on them as far as Azekah, and they died. There were more who died because of the hailstones than the sons of Israel killed with the sword…24 And when they brought those kings out to Joshua, Joshua summoned all the men of Israel and said to the chiefs of the men of war who had gone with him, “Come near; put your feet on the necks of these kings.” Then they came near and put their feet on their necks.  (25)  And Joshua said to them, “Do not be afraid or dismayed; be strong and courageous. For thus the LORD will do to all your enemies against whom you fight.”

 

A constant refrain from the Lord to the Israelites, “Do not fear them.” The Lord had promised the land and its possession to the Israelites. Now he is given their armies and peoples into Joshua’s hands. The Lord fights for Israel! He had said as much earlier here: Exo 14:14 “The LORD will fight for you, and you have only to be silent.”

 

So the Lord throws their enemies into confusion. On top of that he rains down large hailstones and kills more of Israel’s enemies than they do with the sword. But there are lot of Canaanites yet to be destroyed so Joshua ask the Lord for more daylight and the Lord answers his prayer. Joshua brings the defeated kings before him and has his men put their feet on their necks to demonstrate Israel’s defeat of them and their forces. Throughout the campaign they have a word to remember as they go into battle, “Do not be afraid or dismayed; be strong and courageous. For thus the LORD will do to all your enemies against whom you fight.”

 

Now we as Christians are not called to take up arms in this way. Our weapons are the Word of God and prayer. We are not to take vengeance upon our enemies or nations. We are not called to take countries over with violence but with the peace, mercy and love that is ours in Christ Jesus. We need not fear the nations or what they may do to us. Jesus said, Mat 10:28-31 “And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell.. (31)  Fear not, therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows.”

 

And yet there is a great end-time battle coming. Another Joshua leads the battle. It is the Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord in the flesh who fought for Joshua and the Israelites. He and his angels shall come and remove all wickedness from the earth by the sword of his mouth. In the meantime our battles are not against flesh and blood but power and principalities in the air. But we not fear them either. At the resurrection, Jesus has put his foot on their necks and removed their power to harm you. We should remember what Joshua said, “be strong and courageous. For the Lord will do to all your enemies whom you fight.”
O Lord, do be our captain and fight all our battles that we may rest in you. Amen.

Daily Reading: July 3rd


#DailyDevotion What Is Left When You Reject God’s Love?

July 3rd

Read Josh 8:1–28

Jos 8:22-28  And the others came out from the city against them, so they were in the midst of Israel, some on this side, and some on that side. And Israel struck them down, until there was left none that survived or escaped.  (23)  But the king of Ai they took alive, and brought him near to Joshua.  (24)  When Israel had finished killing all the inhabitants of Ai in the open wilderness where they pursued them, and all of them to the very last had fallen by the edge of the sword, all Israel returned to Ai and struck it down with the edge of the sword.  (25)  And all who fell that day, both men and women, were 12,000, all the people of Ai.  (26)  But Joshua did not draw back his hand with which he stretched out the javelin until he had devoted all the inhabitants of Ai to destruction.  (27)  Only the livestock and the spoil of that city Israel took as their plunder, according to the word of the LORD that he commanded Joshua.  (28)  So Joshua burned Ai and made it forever a heap of ruins, as it is to this day.

 

A lot of people have a problem with these sections of the Old Testament.  It’s all blood and gore. “How can a loving God do this?” Is the question often asked.  But who is God the Lord being loving to here?  Isn’t he being loving to Israel, his chosen people, the people whom he promised this land through Abraham?  Well as a matter of fact he is.  More than that, he is fulfilling his promise to Abraham and to Israel.

 

On the other hand we must remember that God the Lord is a God of wrath.  Evil will not sit with him.  It cannot stand before his face forever.  As we read through these bloody stories we might recall Jesus on the day he died.  What did he go through?  Indeed the bloody gore we read here in the Old Testament he is taking upon himself, in his own flesh, in his own soul.  He is owning it.

 

We should also recall that this account is representative of the end.  Rev 14:14-20  Then I looked, and behold, a white cloud, and seated on the cloud one like a son of man, with a golden crown on his head, and a sharp sickle in his hand.  (15)  And another angel came out of the temple, calling with a loud voice to him who sat on the cloud, “Put in your sickle, and reap, for the hour to reap has come, for the harvest of the earth is fully ripe.”  (16)  So he who sat on the cloud swung his sickle across the earth, and the earth was reaped.  (17)  Then another angel came out of the temple in heaven, and he too had a sharp sickle.  (18)  And another angel came out from the altar, the angel who has authority over the fire, and he called with a loud voice to the one who had the sharp sickle, “Put in your sickle and gather the clusters from the vine of the earth, for its grapes are ripe.”  (19)  So the angel swung his sickle across the earth and gathered the grape harvest of the earth and threw it into the great winepress of the wrath of God.  (20)  And the winepress was trodden outside the city, and blood flowed from the winepress, as high as a horse’s bridle, for 1,600 stadia.

 

There is a day of wrath and the Old Testament testifies to what it will be like on that day for all who reject God’s Love in Christ Jesus.

 

Lord God, Heavenly Father, grant us your grace that we may remain faithful and your holy people until the end when you come from us that we may escape from the wrath suffered by your Son Jesus Christ on the cross.  In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

Daily Reading: July 2nd


#DailyDevotion Don’t Covet, Pray

July 2nd

Read Josh 7:1–26

Jos 7:1  But the people of Israel broke faith in regard to the devoted things, for Achan the son of Carmi, son of Zabdi, son of Zerah, of the tribe of Judah, took some of the devoted things. And the anger of the LORD burned against the people of Israel. 11-12  “Israel has sinned; they have transgressed my covenant that I commanded them; they have taken some of the devoted things; they have stolen and lied and put them among their own belongings.  (12)  Therefore the people of Israel cannot stand before their enemies. They turn their backs before their enemies, because they have become devoted for destruction. I will be with you no more, unless you destroy the devoted things from among you.”

 

The Lord God was pretty explicit.  The Israelites were to destroy everything but the precious metals (and those belonged to the Lord).  But some of the Israelites trusted in possessions more than they trusted in the Lord.  Achan coveted some of the stuff he had seen in Jericho.   Instead of trusting in the Lord to provide him such things he took it upon himself to get it.  His action spoiled the whole housed of Israel and they could not stand before their enemies.  By harboring Achan the whole lot was devoted to destruction.  Their only hope was to destroy that thing that brought destruction upon them.

 

Is there something in your life that you are coveting?  What have you done to get what you have coveted?  Did you ever think of asking the Lord for what you wanted instead of sinning to get it?  We may covet all sorts of things, material and immaterial: Wives, women, men and husbands, children, objects that belong to someone else, someone else’s good name and reputation, their friends and immaterial blessings of those friends, fame, love etc..  Instead of asking God for such things and then going about the right way to get them we sin against other people and God and try to get them in ways other than the right ways.

 

We bring shame upon ourselves, our family, our congregation, the Church at large even our town, county and country when we attach our affections and desires to things which are devoted to destruction.  Will not God’s wrath rest upon those who approve of such behaviors and lack of trust in the Lord.

 

James tells we don’t have because we don’t ask and when we do ask it is for selfish motives.  Paul tells us to not be anxious but by prayer, petitions, supplications with thanksgiving present your request before God and the peace of Christ Jesus will keep your hearts.  Jesus tells us to not be anxious because our heavenly Father knows what we need and will provide it for us, indeed the desires of our regenerate hearts will be fulfilled.  Jesus promises ask and it will be given unto you.  Give thanks as if you have already received it.  Ask trusting you are acceptable and pleasing to God because of Jesus and your faith in him.

 

Lord God heavenly Father, grant us such faith in you that you will supply all our needs on account of Christ Jesus your Son and his promises that we do not covet that which is devoted to destruction, but wait on you to give us the desires of our hearts. In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.