We are making this a Permanent Part of our Evening Devotional!
My Good Friend, F. Carrington Weems II, has written a 42-Chapter Book
entitled: A Ticket to Heaven!
Please feel free to forward this to all of your contacts!
It is part of Carrington’s Witness and Free: Just for You at:
Today, we are starting a Weekly feature called:
“A Word From Casey!”
Dr. Winfield Casey Jones is a Retired Pastor from the First Presbyerian Church of Pearland, TX, He can be reached at: email@example.com
Relationships and the Relational God
Last week Vicky and I attended my fiftieth high school reunion in the Western North Carolina town of Hendersonville where I grew up. What a blessing! There were only 110 people in my graduating class. One of the things that was most fun about the reunion was that some of the people who came were persons whom I had known practically all of life—since first or second grade. There was Terry whom I was with in cub scouts, and my good friend Louis who was in my church, scout troop and little league team, and with whom I used to camp in the woods. There were many other people whose names I would surely mention too if I had the space, because they became my good friends later in middle school, junior high and then in high school. One of them, Trevor, was only with us my senior year as a foreign exchange student from Australia, yet we too became good friends, and he and his wife came all the way from Australia to the reunion!
My reunion caused me to think a lot about relationships. Relationships are like gold. Well, really they are more enduring than gold. They are precious. I thank God for each and every relationship I have. Since most of my classmates knew I am a pastor, a few of them (after they got over their surprise!) shared with me about their own faith. Some had very deep trust in God. On the other hand, one or two told me that intellectually they just could not bring themselves to believe in God—though they might want to. It just didn’t seem reasonable to them. I deeply respect their position, although of course I see it a bit differently. But these discussions got me thinking.
I saw at my reunion how important relationships are, and yet I think many people do not approach the question of God in a relational way at all but rather they regard the question of God’s existence as a matter to be analyzed. They see God himself, if He exists, as an object of study. I am convinced that many people fail to come to faith because they are using only the part of their brain that is rational and analytical. While I believe that part of faith is rational, and that some brilliant people have been believers, I also believe that faith is primarily relational. (In fact the Greek and Hebrew words we translate “faith” also mean “trust.”)
I often advise people who doubt God’s existence, but who might want to trust, to begin talking to Him as if He existed and then see what happens. Treat Him as someone you can talk with rather than as a piece of furniture or an equation. Assume (as a working hypothesis if you must) that He is near and address Him that way, then pay attention to what happens in your life. (And also say a prayer, and then read the Bible.)
Think about falling in love. It is not rational and analytical. In some ways falling in love is a leap of faith. It is a tremendous risk. Or suppose you were thinking about getting married. Would that decision be one you could make using pure reason alone? I think not.
Many people approach God as if he were a mathematical problem to be solved or a fossil to be analyzed under the microscope. But if they approached their spouses that way, the marriage would probably not last! If they approached their children that way, their children would feel the coldness.
God is not so much to be analyzed as to be tried and trusted and worshiped and loved. Coming to Him invariably involves a letting go of control.
Today I am babysitting my 3 year old and 10 month old grandchildren. I love being with them! They teach me so much. One of the most profound things Jesus ever said was that if someone wanted to enter “the kingdom of God” (the reality all around us where we experience God), that person would need to become “as a little child.” Wow! Children have a sense of wonder and awe. They are not analytical, but trusting. They understand love, and they understand it is the most important thing there is.
(Did you see or read the story about the two year-old in Santa Rosa, CA, who as the wildfires approached their house, said to his mom, “Don’t worry mom, it’s going to be OK.”)
Try becoming like a little child again. Open your heart and mind to that way of childlike, relational being. Trust. Relax and let go a bit, and see where it leads you with God and with yourself.
Read and hear each Chapter from the Book of Revelation:
GODLINESS EXALTS A NATION, BUT SIN
IS A REPROACH TO ANY PEOPLE!
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Clean Before the Lord!
“Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.” Psalm 51:7
I heard of a missionary whose wife was very fastidious. They moved into a small hut, and soon she noticed that the floor was filthy. The first thing the wife wanted to do was to scrub that floor, so she scrubbed and scrubbed but to no avail. She began to wonder if she would ever get the floor clean. Finally, somebody told her the problem. It was a dirt floor! The more she scrubbed the more dirt she scrubbed up.
In the same way, we can never scrub off our sinful nature. All we do is reveal more of what is there.
I hate to tell you this, but we’re rotten to the core.
Jesus said, “Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God” (John 3:3).
How dirty are you this morning? How clean must you be before you can talk with your Heavenly Father? Claim the blood of Jesus and commune freely with your Father who loves you.
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“The Greatest thing that ever happened to me was when I realized that GOD forgave me of all my sins through the Death, Burial and Resurrection of His Son, Jesus and through my Faith in Him.”
For more from Love Worth Finding and Pastor Adrian Rogers, please visit www.lwf.org.
“And the peace of God, which transcends all our powers of thought, will be a garrison to guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus” (Phil. 4:7)
There is what is called the “cushion of the sea.” Down beneath the surface that is agitated by storms, and driven about with winds, there is a part of the sea that is never stirred. When we dredge the bottom and bring up the remains of animal and vegetable life we find that they give evidence of not having been disturbed in the least, for hundreds and thousands of years. The peace of God is that eternal calm which, like the cushion of the sea, lies far too deep down to be reached by any external trouble and disturbance; and he who enters into the presence of God, becomes partaker of that undisturbed and undisturbable calm.
–Dr. A. T. Pierson
When winds are raging o’er the upper ocean,
And billows wild contend with angry roar,
‘Tis said, far down beneath the wild commotion,
That peaceful stillness reigneth evermore.
Far, far beneath, the noise of tempest dieth,
And silver waves chime ever peacefully,
And no rude storm, how fierce soe’er it flieth,
Disturbs the Sabbath of that deeper sea.
So to the heart that knows Thy love, O Purest,
There is a temple sacred evermore,
And all the babble of life’s angry voices
Dies in hushed silence at its peaceful door.
Far, far away, the roar of passion dieth,
And loving thoughts rise calm and peacefully,
And no rude storm, how fierce soe’er it flieth,
Disturbs the soul that dwells, O Lord, in Thee.
–Harriet Beecher Stowe
“The Pilgrim they laid in a large upper chamber, facing the sun-rising. The name of the chamber was Peace.”
–Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress
My testimony is at: http://boblewis.net/testimony
Dr John Morgan
September 24, 2017
1 Thessalonians 5:6
Let us not sleep, as do others.
There are many ways of promoting Christian wakefulness. Among the rest, let me strongly advise Christians to converse together concerning the ways of the Lord. Christian and Hopeful, as they journeyed towards the Celestial City, said to themselves, “To prevent drowsiness in this place, let us fall into good discourse.” Christian enquired, “Brother, where shall we begin?” And Hopeful answered, “Where God began with us.” Then Christian sang this song-
“When saints do sleepy grow, let them come hither,
And hear how these two pilgrims talk together;
Yea, let them learn of them, in any wise,
Thus to keep open their drowsy slumb’ring eyes.
Saints’ fellowship, if it be managed well,
Keeps them awake, and that in spite of hell.”
Christians who isolate themselves and walk alone, are very liable to grow drowsy. Hold Christian company, and you will be kept wakeful by it, and refreshed and encouraged to make quicker progress in the road to heaven. But as you thus take “sweet counsel” with others in the ways of God, take care that the theme of your converse is the Lord Jesus. Let the eye of faith be constantly looking unto Him; let your heart be full of Him; let your lips speak of His worth. Friend, live near to the cross, and thou wilt not sleep. Labour to impress thyself with a deep sense of the value of the place to which thou art going. If thou rememberest that thou art going to heaven, thou wilt not sleep on the road. If thou thinkest that hell is behind thee, and the devil pursuing thee, thou wilt not loiter. Would the manslayer sleep with the avenger of blood behind him, and the city of refuge before him? Christian, wilt thou sleep whilst the pearly gates are open-the songs of angels waiting for thee to join them-a crown of gold ready for thy brow? Ah! no; in holy fellowship continue to watch and pray that ye enter not into temptation.
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Why I Believe in the Return of Christ
God continues to bless Sagemont Church. In the last two Sundays, over 100 people have made public decisions to make Jesus Christ Lord of their life. Pastors Chuck Schneider, Stuart Rothberg, and Jim Hastings have been teaching the scriptures as both the Old and New Testaments prophesy and proclaim that Jesus Christ is coming back to this earth again to claim and receive His children unto Himself. During the worship services, I am preaching the message and promise of the return of Christ.
One may ask, “Pastor, why do you passionately believe that Jesus is literally going to return to the earth?” These are a few reasons:
Why I Believe in the Return of Christ
- Jesus said He would! John 14:3 “I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.”
- The entire Christian view of history demands it.
- The prophetic signs found in scripture are now clearly being fulfilled.
- Earthquakes all over the globe. Matthew 24:7 – (over 20,000 since 1971)
- Hearts will fail for fear. Luke 21:26 – Suicides are epidemic.
- Great explosions of learning. II Timothy 3:7 – People cannot discern the truth.
- Immorality abounds. Luke 17:26-27 – Like the days of Noah.
Scripture clearly teaches that Jesus will come to save His children and judge the rest.
God and Churchill
I have just completed reading one of the best books that I have read in the last twenty years. God and Churchill, written by one of our newest Sagemont members Jonathan Sandys (pronounced “sands”), great-grandson of Sir Winston Churchill. Wallace Henley, staff member at Second Baptist Church, Houston, assisted Jonathan in this profound book. The purpose of the book is to make clear “how the great leader’s sense of divine destiny changed his troubled world and offers help for ours.” Tyndale Momentum is the publisher. The book has many profound quotes. However, there is one that has impacted my life more than many others. Prime Minister of Great Britain, Margaret Thatcher, addressing the Church of Scotland General Assembly in 1988, said “I think back to many discussions in my early life when we all agreed that if you try to take the fruits of Christianity without its roots, the fruits will wither. And they will not come back unless you nurture the roots.”
One of the responsibilities of the Bride of Christ, the Church, is to keep Christianity on track and prevent the derailing of His ultimate purpose. The paganism that is engulfing us today will ultimately destroy us unless we return to the roots of our faith. “Our faith is built on nothing less than Jesus’ blood and righteousness.” It is on the solid rock we must stand for truly all other ground is sinking sand.
Note: The book God and Churchill is available in the Sagemont Bookstore.
PLEASE REMEMBER JERUSALEM AND ISRAEL IN YOUR PRAYERS!
Read and hear each Chapter from the Book of Revelation:
Recommendation: Let your Marriage be a Dance… Choreographed by God!
Please Pray for our Troops that remain in Harm’s Way over-seas;
Please Pray for the Unemployed, the Homeless and the Unsaved around the world;
ADDITIONAL PRAYER REQUESTS: Please Pray for the economy in our Great Nation . For Peace, Democracy and Freedom in the Middle East; For a solution to our Immigration Problem; Protection for Jerusalem and Israel; Wisdom, Common Sense and Good Judgment for our World, National, State and Local Leaders; For our Military Men & Women in harm’s-way overseas; For our Police, Fire and EMS Personnel watching over us on a local level; For our Country; that it will turn from its wicked ways and humble itself before God so that He will heal our land! That we will elect the people that God would have us to elect to office. Please Email your Prayer Requests to:
Bob’s Favorite Quotes:
1.) The beginning of anxiety is the end of Faith and the end of anxiety is the beginning of Faith. George Mueller
2.) Its not Red, Yellow, Black or White Races; Its the HUMAN RACE! Bob Lewis – June 2, 2011 (You can quote me on that!)
3.) God will NOT do what YOU can do and YOU cannot do what GOD can do!
4.) FAITH MAKES THINGS POSSIBLE… NOT EASY!
5.) GOD is GOD alone; I am NOT GOD;
We should ALL state that to ourselves;
He does NOT need our help, we need His!
Other favorite Verses:
Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil.
Whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have eternal life.
Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.
He that endureth to the end shall be saved.
The Lord hath given him rest from all his enemies.
11 Samuel 7:1
Thy remembrance shall endure into all generations.
I thank my God upon every remembrance of you.
He that believeth in the Son hath everlasting life.
I rejoice in thy salvation.
1 Samuel 2:1
The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.
This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well please.
Blessed is the man who maketh the Lord his trust.
Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden.
Sleep on now, and take your rest.
Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.
…Well done, thou good and faithful servant.
I am the resurrection and the life; he that believeth in me, though he were dead yet shall he live.
Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me.
…All things work together for good to them that love God.
…Be thou faith unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life.
…Not my will, but thine be done.
The Lord watch between me and thee, while we are absent, one from the other.
For with thee is the foundation of life: in the light shall we see light.
God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him.
1 John iv:16
Greater love than this no one has, that one lay down his life for his friends.
This is the promise… the life everlasting.
1st Epistle of John ii:25
For of such is the kingdom of heaven.
Tell everyone about the amazing things He does!”
Bible Chapter Look-Up Just Enter the Book and Chapter and click enter! If you don’t know the Chapters in the Old & New Testaments in order, Just go to: Books and Chapters in the Holy Bible: Click Here! and look them up!)
May God Bless the reading of His Word and may He Bless you and your family and let His Favor shine down upon you today in everything you say and do, in Christ’s Name, Amen.
The most important verse in The Holy Bible is: Jesus told Nicodemus: “For God so loved the world that He gave His Only Begotten Son, that whosoever believeth on Him shall not perish but have Everlasting Life!” John 3:16
The SECOND most important verse is: Jesus said: “I Am The Way The Truth and The Life: NO ONE COMES TO THE FATHER EXCEPT THROUGH ME!” John 14:6
From a Subscriber: “If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” Romans 10:9
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His Great Commission, as He ascended back into Heaven while on the road to Bethany was:
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