What Jesus Says

JANUARY 7

MATTHEW 5:2_saying,

Jesus has reached the mark, set, and opened His mouth. Here we go! Now is the time to be blessed as only truth, love, and freedom can bless.

What Jesus says gives liberty. What Jesus says gives self-acceptance with worth.

What Jesus says gives power to forgive. What Jesus says gives God’s wisdom.

What Jesus says gives peace to pass human understanding.

What Jesus says gives courage in the midst of, and in the face of, raging storms.

What Jesus says gives love. This is not the temporal self-absorbing love, but the true, everlasting, never failing love.

What Jesus says gives faith—incredible, phenomenal, mountain moving!

There is nothing namby-pamby about Jesus or His teachings. He brings real answers for real people with real problems.

Jesus brings strong truth for weak people who need real help.

He brings tough love that doesn’t coddle or pamper, but compassionately stays until the hurt is soothed and healing has come.

Throughout this year consider these sayings, hand-picked for you.

PRAYER

Almighty God, I have real problems and I need real answers. Help me draw closer to You through Your teachings. I can trust You to guide me in faith. I want incredible, phenomenal, mountain moving faith! In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.                    

Christ knows my hurts and pains—and He cares!

Rulers in the Darkness

NOVEMBER 30

MATTHEW 7:22_and in Thy name cast out devils…

Ephesians 6:12 (KJV), “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.”

This verse says there are rulers in the darkness and they have powers. It is good to have a healthy fear of these powers. It helps you live in the reality that the devil is powerful and you are no match for him.

That’s as far as your fear needs to go. When you chose to accept Jesus as your Savior—you defeated the devil. He knows he no longer has power over your eternity. Beware that he will come after you in this life with his deception and lies about your unworthiness. 

Colossians 1:12-14 (KJV), “Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet [worthy] to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light:13 Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear son:14 In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins.”

That’s why the devil is defeated.

Be knowledgeable about the spirits of darkness, but do not pursue experiencing first hand any kind of occult practices. Don’t go there, even if you think you are learning something for the good of helping a friend.

Grow strong in Jesus and know your Bible—that’s how you help friends!

PRAYER

Jesus Savior, Praise You for defeating the devil for me! In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen. 

Christ has defeated the devil and his demons—For me!

Many

NOVEMBER 27

MATTHEW 7:22_Many will say unto me in that day, Lord, Lord…

Jesus begins this verse with the word many. I already feel bad that not everyone will go to heaven, but now I feel worse that the not everyones are many. 

This reminds me of the narrow path, when Jesus says few will find it. It also causes me to think about how He said many will go in at the broad gate.

From His Sermon on the Mount, Jesus has taught me who comprises the many:

Those whose righteousness does not exceed that of the Scribes and Pharisees (chapter 5:20),

Those who cause others to believe they are empty-headed idiots (chapter 5:22),

Those who profit from the bondage of human trafficking (chapter 5:29-30),

Those who do not forgive (chapter 6:15),

Those who choose the broad path to destruction (chapter 7:13),

Those who are ravening wolves and bring evil into the world (chapter 7:17).

None of these actions exclude anyone from heaven by the action alone. The exclusivity comes from the heart. The heart which excludes Jesus.

The actions can all be forgiven and erased when the heart opens to include Jesus.

The actions reveal the heart.                    

PRAYER

God of All, You have taught me to include You in my heart. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.             

Christ desires to be included in my life—I will let Him!

Because

OCTOBER 26

MATTHEW 7:14_Because…

If you have never been to Rock City in Chattanooga, Tennessee, add it to your bucket list.  You’ll find it at the top of Lookout Mountain. The area known as Rock City is full of many unique rock formations.

There are different paths to take as you encounter fascinating natural wonders. I have taken youth groups there but have never had a group that completed the journey at the same time—even when they took the same path. Some rush through, some stop and explore.

Because Jesus’ gates lead to life paths, you have the freedom to choose the path to follow. You have the freedom to decide how to spend your time on each path. How it ends is your decision. The apostle John says in I John 2:12-13 (KJV), “I write unto you, little children, because your sins are forgiven you for his name’s sake. 13 I write unto you, fathers, because ye have known him that is from the beginning. I write unto you, young men, because ye have overcome the wicked one. I write unto you, little children, because ye have known the Father.”    

There are a lot of becauses in these verses. Each one is directed to a different stage in life. They are each about receiving the truth because of choosing the path which leads into a relationship with Jesus.   

 PRAYER

Lord of Truth, I know the Bible is written to me because I choose the truth! In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.                                                           

Christ caused the Bible to be written to me—I will study!

Not Easy, But Better Than Bondage

SEPTEMBER 12

MATTHEW 7:3_And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother’s eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?

The kind of judgment found in the wicked servant’s heart is to believe a debt, or any wrong, is never worthy of mercy. To the judgmental, guilt should only result in punishment – never mercy.

Once again, there are situations when the best thing to do for guilty people is to turn them over to the law. There are times when people are so deeply in bondage that it requires a rude awakening to save them.

This happened to the apostle Paul on the road to Damascus: Acts 9 (KJV), “And he [Paul] fell to the earth, and heard a voice saying unto him, ‘Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me?’ And he said, ‘Who art thou, Lord?’ And the Lord said, ‘I am Jesus whom thou persecutest: it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks.’ And he [Paul] trembling and astonished said, ‘Lord, what wilt thou have me to do?’ And the Lord said unto him, ‘Arise, and go into the city, and it shall be told thee what thou must do.’And Saul arose from the earth; and when his eyes were opened, he saw no man: but they led him by the hand, and brought him into Damascus.And he was three days without sight, and neither did eat nor drink.”

This is not an easy way to be set free, but it is better than bondage.

PRAYER

Lord of Lords, Praise You that You are able to free me from bondages. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.                   

 Christ gives mercy—He helps me discern when to give it!