Warning – On using God’s Word for Political Fighting

He was concerned about the security of his country.  He wanted to build a wall for its protection.  He asked a foreign leader to pay for the construction of the wall.  He was made the ruler of his land.  He built the wall and put armed guards around it as they were building, for the protection of the builders.  He was slandered and falsely accused, even by his own people.  They tried to help the enemies tear him down. He finished the wall.  He threw out foreigners who should not be there.  He closed the gates for a period of time to help protect the people.  He asked God continually to remember all he was doing for Him.  And God did.

He is not Donald Trump, but Nehemiah.  The land is not the United States but Jerusalem.  The story of Nehemiah has nothing to do with the debate on refugee restrictions in the United States, but it is meant to show that it is easy to pluck things out of the Bible and use them for your own purposes.  There are supporting verses that can be used and applied to both sides, which none of them line up exactly into this debate.  There is no simple answer.  Yes, we are supposed to love and take care of those in need.  But yes, governments are supposed to protect their own people from enemies bent on destroying them.  Evil is real.  Satan seeks to destroy.  We need to love our neighbors no matter of their race, religion, ethnicity, sexual persuasion, or whatever.  God tells to love one another, but hate the sin.  Sin is the root of all of the problems and we all stink from it.  Only the grace of God can remove the stench.  What the right balance is on this issue, I cannot say for sure.  I have my feelings and I am sure you have your own as well.  When debating this issue do it with grace and love.

Be careful of using God’s Word to justify your political views.  The Bible needs to shape us, we are not to shape the Bible.  It is not a tool for fighting political warfare.  It is a sword, which is living and active that pierces hearts and brings God’s truths into the hearts of mankind (Hebrews 4:12).  It used for bringing the knowledge of salvation and sanctification.

Whatever side you are on, pray for our leaders.  Whatever side you are on pray for Jesus to come back and set up His Kingdom.  For it will be the only perfect government, this world will ever see.  Come Lord Jesus!

The Lord Hears

Psalm 28:2 Hear the voice of my supplications when I cry to You for help, When I lift up my hands toward Your holy sanctuary.
Psalm 28:6 Blessed be the LORD, Because He has heard the voice of my supplication.

David, asks God to hear in verse 2 and by verse 6 he is praising God for hearing him.  God hears us when we pray.  He hears our cries and pleas for help.  He is our ever present help in trouble.  When things are a struggle for you, cry out to God.  Ask Him for help.  Ask Him to protect you in the hard times.  Praise Him for hearing you and being faithful to you.  He is faithful.

Your cries will not go unheard.  God knows all you are going through and promises to never leave you.  Even when He seems far off, He is near.  Praise God for that.  Bless the Lord for hearing our prayers!

Hope

Psalm 27:13 I would have despaired unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the LORD In the land of the living.

Hope is something we all need.  When people lose hope they have no purpose.  They feel in despair and depressed.  They feel as if the whole world was against them.  David thought he would be this way, if he did not have the hope of seeing the goodness of God.  He knew the character of God and good God is.  This gave him hope.

The more we study about God’s character, the more hope we have.  We realize how much He loves us.  We realize that He will do anything to save and redeem us.  We realize that we are His child and an heir in His kingdom.  We realize that God keeps His promises.  All of this should give us hope.

When you feel despair, run to God.  Spend time praying and reading His word.  Let God give you the hope that you need.  The belief that He will take care of you.  That when the storms of life hit, you are well protected by the goodness of God.

Thank you Lord, for the hope we have in you!

The Lord’s House

Psalm 26:8 O LORD, I love the habitation of Your house And the place where Your glory dwells.

David loved to go up and worship God in the tent that Moses built.  Later in life he wanted to build a permanent house for God, but God told him that his son, Solomon, would build it instead of him.  So David did all of the planning for it and stocked up on all the supplies.  He wanted to be part of it.  David loved being where God was.  He loved being in the presence of God and worshiping Him.

Today, churches come in many different styles and looks.  Some are magnificent buildings, where people spent a lot of money to build it.  Others are really simple and not too fancy.  Some churches meet in a school gym or a person’s home.  The truth is the building does not matter.  In David’s time the building itself did not matter.  What matters is whether God’s glory dwells in it or not.  Jesus said in Matthew 18:20, where a two or three people meet in His name, He will be there.  That is what makes a place, the Lord’s House.  It is all about God.  God gives a place significance, whatever we build does not.

Wherever you meet with your church today, pray for God to be present with you and that His glory may fill the place.  Pray that God hears your worship and that He accepts and is pleased by it.  Pray that God will speak through your pastor and that He will give people open hearts and minds to the pastor’s sermon.  Pray that the whole thing will be about Him, not about you.

Have a blessed day in the Lord’s House today!

Learn From God

Psalm 25:4-5
4 Make me know Your ways, O LORD; Teach me Your paths. 5 Lead me in Your truth and teach me, For You are the God of my salvation; For You I wait all the day.

David pleads for God’s help in knowing God’s ways.  We need to do this as well.  God’s wisdom is off the charts compared to man’s.  There is no comparison.  We need His help in discerning what is right and walking with Him the right way.  We need His grace, for we cannot walk with God on our own.  David asks 3 different ways for this and we will take brief look at each.

First, He asks God to “Make me know Your ways”.  David wants to know God’s ways but realizes He cannot without God’s help and leading.  As a shepherd, David knew that sometimes he had to make or force the sheep to do something.  In Psalm 23:2, He says that God “makes him lie down in green pastures”.  David wants God to make him do the things that are best for him.

Second, He asks twice for God to “Teach me”.  If God is the wisest of all, then no one is better to learn from than God.  David asks God to teach him the paths of God, to teach him about the salvation of God, and to teach him patience and how to wait on God.  We all need to learn these and much more from God.  We need to spend time in His Word daily and in prayer seeking the wisdom of God.  This is something I know I do not do enough of.  Teach me O Lord to follow you better!  Teach me O Lord to know you and your character better!  Teach me to be patient and wait for you and your faithfulness!

Lastly, David asks God to “Lead me in Your truth”.  So much of what mankind is today is a lie.  We seek our own truth, rather than the Truth of God.  We exchange God’s Truth for a lie (Romans 1:25).  David does not what to follow a lie.  He wants to follow the true God.  We needs God’s leading, which gives us wisdom.  We need to be patient and humble and let God lead us.  Petra had a song back in the day, which talked about this.  It was called Minefield and the chorus went like this:

It’s a mine field – you’d better follow Him through
God knows the way – you’d better stick like glue
It’s a mine field – better stay on His heels
’cause the enemy kills and the enemy steals
So keep your head down and keep you eyes peeled
’cause life is…
Life is a mine field

When we stop following God, bad things can happen.  He knows the right way, so follow Him!

Make me, Teach Me, Lead Me O Lord!  I need you, every moment of every day!

It’s the Lord’s

Psalm 24:1 The earth is the LORD’S, and all it contains, The world, and those who dwell in it.

Everything belongs to God, for He is the creator of all things.  God created the earth and all that is on it.  He also has created you and me.  He has the right to set the standards we are to live by.  He has the right to judge those (all of us) who fail to live up to those standards.  He has the right to provide another way for us to be forgiven.  God is in control and in charge.

Nature is under God’s control.  Flowers bloom, because He commanded them.  Grass both grows and whither under His watch.  Generations of wild animals are born under His care.  God is in control because everything belongs to Him.

Our lives move smoother, when we submit to our creator.  Live your life in submission to God.

My Shepherd

Psalm 23:1 The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not want.

This is probably one of the most famous Psalms.  David knew a lot about being a shepherd.  He spent his early years watching his father’s sheep.  He protected them and kept a keen eye out for any enemies.  He took care of all their needs.  David recognized that God was his shepherd and that he was apart of God’s flock.

He knew that God watched over him and protected him from his enemies.  God also provided for all of his needs.  Do you see yourself as a member of God’s flock?  Are you one of His sheep?  Jesus said that His sheep know His voice and respond to Him.  The only way to have God as your shepherd is come to Jesus by faith.  Admit that you are a sinner and that Jesus is your only hope for salvation.  Ask Jesus to be your shepherd, to be your savior.  He’s calling you to be His.  He is pursuing you, looking for you.  Respond to Him today!

Pass it on

Psalm 22:30b-31
It will be told of the Lord to the coming generation. 31 They will come and will declare His righteousness To a people who will be born, that He has performed it.

We must pass on the Gospel, the Good News, to the future generations.  They need to hear about Jesus, from an early age.  The world is going to teach them a bunch of junk and they need to have a foundation of God’s Word.  They need to know the truth about God and His love for them.  They need to know what God has done and is doing in your life.  They need to know that He is faithful.  They need to know that the Bible is true and reliable.  They need to know all of this and more.

God tells us to tell our kids about Him.  We are supposed to be doing this continually, all through out our day.

Deuteronomy 11:19-21
19 “You shall teach them to your sons, talking of them when you sit in your house and when you walk along the road and when you lie down and when you rise up. 20 “You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates, 21 so that your days and the days of your sons may be multiplied on the land which the LORD swore to your fathers to give them, as long as the heavens remain above the earth.

Tell them about Jesus and His love for them!

Remember God’s Faithfulness

Psalm 22:4 In You our fathers trusted; They trusted and You delivered them.

When things are going wrongly, take a deep breath and remember.  Remember how God was faithful to those who came before us.  Remember, those people faced similar issues to what we face and God was faithful to them.  He was faithful then and He will be faithful to you now.  God’s Word tells us to look back at those who came before us and see that God is faithful.

God will not forget you.  He promises never to forsake you.  He says that if He takes care of the birds in the air and flowers in the field, He will most certainly take care of you and me.  God is faithful to His word and His promises.

Thank you, O Lord, for loving me and being faithful to me!

Trust

Psalm 21:7 For the king trusts in the LORD, And through the lovingkindness of the Most High he will not be shaken.

David, the king, says that he trusts in God and because of that he will not be shaken.  In some of the previous chapters, David has called God his rock.  When our foundation is our trust in God, we will not easily be shaken.  Storms will come, the winds will blow, water will splash and yet you will stand strong.

Jesus told a parable about this in Matthew 7.  He talked about the foolish man building his house on the sand.  When the rains came, the house fell down.  But the wise man built his house on the rock.  When the rains came the house stood firm.  The wise man builds the foundation of his life on Jesus.  He is able to stand firm in the tough times.  The foolish man falls apart when the storms come.

Trust in God and build your foundation on Him.  He is our rock!