Knowing when…

Therefore the prudent keep silent at that time, For it is an evil time. -Amos 5:13 NKJV

Sometimes we as Christians are required to accept what is happening around us as the way it is — once we have given it prayerful consideration, examined scripture and taken any action that it may indicate. There are times when keeping silent while the LORD works His will is what He demands of us.

“Be still, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!”
Psalm 46:10 ESV

What do you want?

If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you. -John 15:7 NKJV

A major point to remember in the verse above is “if you abide in Me…” When we abide in Him, our desires become synonymous with His.

What are your desires?

Let it happen!

The Lord will fight for you, and you have only to be silent.” -Exodus 14:14 ESV

How hard it can be to remain silent and know that “God’s got this?” I recall hearing once that the hardest prayer to offer is sometimes simply “Lord help me” without explaining to Him exactly how to do it!

Forgiven

Blessed is the one whose transgressions are forgiven, whose sins are covered. Blessed is the one whose sin the Lord does not count against them and in whose spirit is no deceit. Psalms 32:1‭-‬2 NIV

As a child, I remember the relief when I would confess some wrongdoing I had previously hoped to keep concealed to my parents. I would always receive forgiveness, but often face some consequence as well. Such it is with our heavenly Father. Do you have unconfessed sin that you’re aware of and haven’t admitted to Him? It’s not like He doesn’t already know what it is.

From the earliest of days in Genesis until the end of the age, His grace is made apparent.

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. –1 John 1:9 NIV

Prayerlessness

Who is the Almighty, that we should serve him? What would we gain by praying to him?’ -Job 21:15 (NIV)

In using my trusty Thompson® Chain Reference) Bible to prepare for a Bible study on Isaiah 30:1-18, I discovered a chain reference on the topic of “prayerlessness.” It got me thinking about the many times in my life that I have neglected to consult the LORD, let alone give Him the praise and devotion He deserves.

I decided a brief post on the topic would be in order and began searching out the subject online to come up with some very appropriate verses…

there is no one who understands; there is no one who seeks God. -Ro. 3:11 (NIV)

A failure to seek God in our daily lives will lead to a life of fearful uncertainty, depression and bitterness. All these things happen to nations, as well.

Our failure as a nation to seek God is apparent in the moral decay and civil unrest that seems to prevail on the streets of many of our cities today. As we celebrate the 4th of July and are reminded of our freedom, let us seek freedom from our sin as a country and turn back to Him.

if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land. -2 Chronicles 7:14 NIV

Woe…

Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!
Isaiah 5:20 KJV

Isaiah may have been speaking to his people in his time, but the warning certainly rings true to the people of this day and age.

Looking at the events of our time, and what is considered right and what is thought to be wrong, I think the message has merit for our society.

Good Study Bibles

Be diligent to present yourself approved to God, a worker who doesn’t need to be ashamed, correctly teaching the word of truth. 2 Timothy 2:15 HCSB

Speaking as someone who has a large number of Study Bibles, I cannot stress enough that, while I don’t agree with every piece of commentary I read in any of them, I do count most of them as a very valuable resource.

Some of them leave me wondering why they call themselves “Study Bibles.” Those are usually eventually found heavily discounted on sites like christianbook.com. Once purchased, it becomes painfully apparent why they’re on sale!

So what are some favorites? I have loved the ESV, NIV, Nelson KJV, Scofield KJV and HCSB Study Bibles for some time. However, if I could only have one, I believe I would choose the Thompson Chain Reference Bible as my principal study tool. It is available in KJV, NKJV, ESV and 1977 NASB. I’m not sure if the NIV is back in print, but Zondervan is planning a new NIV edition for next year. (Zondervan has purchased the publishing rights from Kirkbride, who was having serious issues and forced by circumstance to give it up).

I have an old Thompson KJV that is well constructed. Recently I acquired a new copy from Zondervan for not much over half what the Kirkbrides cost. The bonded leather is nice as is the paper. The Bible has a sewn binding and is expected to wear well. A feature of the KJV edition I love is that they retain the self-pronuncing text that is so hard to find in modern KJV Bibles and virtually unseen in any other translations. I find it a great help in pronouncing some of those Old Testament names! Both the handy size and normal size can be had for less than $50 online from sellers like Christian Book. Amazon also carries the line for around the same prices.

So, I give the Thompson Chain Reference Bible 5 out of 5 stars, no matter which translation you pick. The KJV is my favorite for the self-pronouncing text, but I use the ESV a lot as well.

In All Things…

Rejoice evermore. Pray without ceasing. In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.
1 Thessalonians 5:16‭-‬18 KJV

Once again, I am reminded of how important it is to be thankful to Him for everything. Recent trials have brought me closer to Him and have shown me “the peace of Christ that passes all understanding.”

Thank you, LORD, for the peace that comes from You that I couldn’t have without Calvary.

A Great Resource In Troubling Times

Be of good courage, and he shall strengthen your heart, all ye that hope in the Lord . Psalms 31:24 KJV

Many people look to science and the thoughts and deeds of humanity to solve their problem. Such futility. People always let you down. Jesus never does. I have been recently made very aware of this as I faced a health challenge that could have been much worse than it was. I carried with me the “peace of Christ that passes all understanding” as I walked through it.

For this, I am forever grateful.