The Storms of Life

NOVEMBER 13

MATTHEW 7:18_A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit…

Jesus builds a foundation first and then brings in the necessary tools needed to build upon it – His Creation Principles.

Jesus warned us to beware of wolves in sheep’s clothing. He taught to recognize deception by the fruit it produces. He taught fruit always reflects its source. Jesus’ principles are sturdy and durable. They’ll stand against the storms of life. They’ll stand throughout the ages. I Peter 2:6 (KJV) , “Wherefore also it is contained in the scripture, Behold, I lay in Sion a chief corner stone, elect, precious: and he that believeth on him [Jesus] shall not be confounded.”

The apostle Paul used this same idea in I Corinthians 3:9-11 (KJV), “For we are labourers together with God: ye are God’s husbandry, ye [Christians] are God’s building.10 According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise masterbuilder, I [Paul] have laid the foundation, and another buildeth thereon. But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon.11 For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ.”

Paul’s teachings are built upon a foundation. That foundation is Jesus.

We are God’s building, studying Jesus’ direct teaching.         

PRAYER

Lord Jesus, Thank you that I am Your building. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.                                                        

Christ builds on principles—I will live in that house!

Inward Character

NOVEMBER 5

MATTHEW 7:16_Ye shall know them by their fruits…

The word fruit here is not literal, as in something to eat. It is a metaphor of the outward character of a person produced by the inward character of their heart.

Beware of any teaching or persuasion that is not in-sync with what you have learned from the Bible! If someone is teaching the Bible and living completely contrary to its principles—beware! If someone tells you the Bible has errors because it was written by men—beware! If someone of the opposite gender says if you love me you will express it physically—beware! If someone uses the expression married in the eyes of God to get you to be sexually involved—beware!

Jesus left heaven, came to earth, and lived in the flesh. He knows how strong fleshly desires can be. His desire is to keep you from becoming snared into bondage. Hebrews 4:14-16 (KJV), “Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession.15 For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.16 Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.”  

PRAYER

Holy Jesus, You feel all the temptations of my flesh. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.                                                                                                                      

Christ was tempted in the ways that I am—He helps me!

Pray for Them!

SEPTEMBER 20

MATTHEW 7:5_Thou hypocrite…

Here’s the question: Did Jesus condone adultery by saving the woman? Did He let her get by (meaning no judgment or accountability) with adultery?

Getting by with something is not really what Jesus is about. Surely by now you know what Jesus is about – freedom! To get by with something will not free you from repeating it. 

If you are truly allowing the Holy Spirit to guide you on the path to freedom and you stumble, don’t be discouraged – you will be freed. Proverbs 24:16 (KJV), “‘For a just man falleth seven times, and riseth up again: but the wicked shall fall into mischief [Hebrew translation is: evil].”

The difference in the one who rises back up and the one who falls deeper into evil is that heart condition. The ability to see all sin is against God and the desire to be changed by His grace. There is a word for this condition – repent. To sincerely and deeply grieve over your path and strongly desire to change directions.   

The Bible teaches to pray for those in authority – all forms of authority. There is a need for authorities to be filled with the Holy Spirit – to be receptive to the Spirit’s leading.

You want your authorities to have wise judgment concerning you.

Pray for them!     

I haven’t answered those first two questions yet – stay with me!

PRAYER

Heavenly Father, Fill all those in my authority with Your Holy Spirit. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.   

Christ knows my heart condition—He will reveal it!

Love and Acceptance

SEPTEMBER 7

MATTHEW 7:2_ye shall be judged…

In whatever form of discipline is considered best, children, and plenty of adults, need correction. Ever heard of a jail called a correctional facility? Wise judgment is discipline with love and acceptance.

“Because you were disciplined does not mean you are a bad person, you are a beautiful person. God loves you. I love you.”

A case of poor judgment is if boundaries are never verbally set, or written, yet they are enforced. The violator is judged guilty without ever having had an opportunity to obey by understanding the rules.

Another case of poor judgment is after someone has apologized, or made right, or been disciplined – the violation is not erased. A situation arises for someone to perform some kind of task – the previous violator is never given a chance: “The last time I trusted you with …”

The one who violated, trespassed, or knocked over the boundaries, is bound to their past. No opportunity is given for renewed trust and worth. Judgment has been passed before an opportunity to show trustworthiness is given. This is not the kind of judgment you want to return to you.

Give everyone the kind of trust you want given you.  

PRAYER

God Who Hears, It is so easy to judge. Your wisdom and grace will change me. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.                   

Christ does not want poor judgment—He will help me!

Free Souls

SEPTEMBER 4

MATTHEW 7:1_Judge not…

The kind of freedom Jesus teaches is not about keeping out of prison (although Jesus’ type of freedom could save you from that). Jesus wants to free souls.

A free soul gains wisdom.

Therefore a free soul has the ability to make wise decisions.

Wise decisions save from many forms of harm.

Wisdom is able to forgive and not carry the baggage of bitterness – which so often leads to physical sickness. 

The wisest man who ever lived, the phenomenal King Solomon, teaches this principle in Proverbs 2:10-13 (KJV), “When wisdom entereth into thine heart, and knowledge is pleasant unto thy soul; 11 Discretion shall preserve thee, understanding shall keep thee: 12 To deliver thee from the way of the evil man, from the man that speaketh froward things; 13 Who leave the paths of uprightness, to walk in the ways of darkness.”

Notice where wisdom enters – your heart. There is more to learn – Proverbs 4:7-9 (KJV), “Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding. Exalt her, and she shall promote thee: she shall bring thee to honour, when thou dost embrace her. She shall give to thine head an ornament of grace: a crown of glory shall she deliver to thee.”

PRAYER

God of Wisdom, Help me be free from judgment and make wise decisions. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.                   

Christ is wisdom—He wants me to learn to be wise!