Daily Devotional; formerly Chaplains Corner

Discussion in 'Religious Discussions' started by ampaterry, Apr 24, 2011.

  1. ampaterry

    ampaterry *TFF Admin Staff Chaplain* Staff Member Supporting Member

    Dec 20, 2008
    West Tennessee
    I am 69 years old, and every ache and pain reminds me of my mortality. As I age, my own approaching death becomes more real to me, and life becomes more and more precious. I consider things like what I live for, and what I would die for, which reminds me of this story told by Ron Blue:

    During the Korean War, a group of believers were in a little chapel when communist soldiers barged in with machine guns. One of the soldiers said, "All right everybody, get up!" So they got off their knees. He said, "Line up against the wall!" They did what the soldier said to do. Then that soldier ripped the picture of Christ off the wall and threw it down on the floor. He said, "All right, one by one, I want you to come by here, spit on this picture, and curse His name."

    The first three in line were men of the church, they did what the soldier said to do. They spit on the picture and they cursed the name of Christ. The fourth one in line was a high school girl. She came up before the picture and she dropped to her knees. She wiped the spittle off with her skirt, and she said, "Go ahead and kill me. I cannot curse His name."

    The soldier said, "Get up!" They blindfolded that girl and the three men, and marched them out behind the chapel. The people inside heard three shots. The soldiers came back in with the girl -- alive. The soldier said, "Anyone who gives up what they believe that easily is not fit to be a communist." And they marched out.

    Matthew 16:25-26 (KJV);
    For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it. For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?

    If it should ever come to it, and God forbid that it would – do you KNOW what you would do? Perhaps none of us can KNOW for sure, but we need to think about this, because SHOULD we ever face it, we need to be prepared to give the only acceptable answer; in favor of Jesus Christ and the Gospel. Our eternal lives depend upon it!

    May God bless each one of you -
  2. BlackEagle

    BlackEagle Well-Known Member Supporting Member

    Nov 25, 2011
    Thanks, Terry;
    The Chirstians in Scotland during the "Killing Times" in the 1600's did exactly the same thing. Civil disobedience. When challenged by the King's soldiers to recant their faith their response was that we must obey God rather than man. They did suffer loss of everything they had, imprisonment, torture, and death for the cause of Christ. There are some accounts of these Covenanters on the internet. For a start...http://www.covenanter.org.uk/WhoWere/

    Philippians 1:21
    For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain.

  3. ampaterry

    ampaterry *TFF Admin Staff Chaplain* Staff Member Supporting Member

    Dec 20, 2008
    West Tennessee
    I pray we do not face such -
    But I fear that we will, considering those encountered by John and recorded in Revelation which were beheaded for the witness of Christ.

    IIRC, the French quit beheading people -
    Which leaves one group still doing that - - -
  4. ampaterry

    ampaterry *TFF Admin Staff Chaplain* Staff Member Supporting Member

    Dec 20, 2008
    West Tennessee
    Yesterday, I spoke about living – and dying – for Christ. Today, I want to quote a few others on the subject:
    George Whitefield, famous English evangelist, said, "O Lord, give me souls, or take my soul."
    Henry Martyn, missionary, cried as he knelt on India's coral strands, "Here let me burn out for God."
    David Brainerd, missionary to North American Indians, declared, "Lord, to Thee I dedicate myself. Oh, accept of me to be Thine forever. Lord, I desire nothing else; I desire nothing more."
    Dwight L. Moody implored, "Use me, then, my Saviour, for whatever purpose and in whatever way Thou mayest require. Here is my poor heart, an empty vessel; fill it with Thy Grace."
    Martin Luther prayed on the night preceding his appearance before the Diet of Worms: "Do Thou, my God, stand by me against all the world's wisdom and reason. Oh, do it! Thou must do it. Stand by me, Thou true, eternal God!"

    Psalm 86:11 (KJV);
    “Teach me thy way, O LORD; I will walk in thy truth: unite my heart to fear thy name.”

    Jeremiah 29:13 (KJV);
    “And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart”

    And lastly, a verse that my Son and daughter memorized for a presentation they did for Church many years ago; it thrilled me to hear it then, and it thrills me every time I hear it now. It is a verse each one of us should take to our hearts, and make the watchword of our Christian lives.
    Isaiah 6:8 (KJV);
    “Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, Here am I; send me.”

    And what thread flows through all of this? Dedication! Self sacrifice! Caring for others more than for yourself!

    May God bless each one of you -
  5. BlackEagle

    BlackEagle Well-Known Member Supporting Member

    Nov 25, 2011
    One more...Jim Elliot, shortly before he was killed by the people he was trying to evangelise:
    He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain that which he cannot lose.

    Thanks, Terry.
  6. sub-moa

    sub-moa Member

    Jan 25, 2012
  7. jack404

    jack404 Former Guest

    Jan 11, 2010
    spam and i've no admin right in here
  8. ampaterry

    ampaterry *TFF Admin Staff Chaplain* Staff Member Supporting Member

    Dec 20, 2008
    West Tennessee
    Many are unaware that the Declaration of Independence did not come into being until a day of fasting and prayer had been observed. Appointed by the Continental Congress, it was kept by all the colonies on May 17, 1776. At that time in our history, God and the Bible were given more reverence and recognition by our government officials than they are today.

    When the nation was finally born, our forefathers rang the Liberty Bell with great enthusiasm, and a legend says that it cracked as they zealously proclaimed their freedom. Years later the White Chapel Foundry of London offered to recast the huge bell, but their proposal was refused. Apparently the symbolic value of the damaged bell, which recalls the religious and patriotic fervor of those early days, is something that America still wishes to preserve.

    This in itself is good; but in view of our nation's moral decline, the crack may also suggest a break in our basic ideals and a serious defect in our spiritual attitudes. We can remedy the situation and avert the judgment of the Lord only by repentance, prayer, and a return to the faith of our fathers. In this sense, there is no time for delay in "mending the bell."

    How do we do that?

    As with all things, the answer is in scripture:

    2 Chronicles 7:14 (KJV);
    If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.

    I pray for our nation, and for our world, every day -

    May God bless each one of you -
  9. BlackEagle

    BlackEagle Well-Known Member Supporting Member

    Nov 25, 2011
    ...as do I. And for the UK in general and Scotland in particular.
    Thanks again, Terry.
  10. ampaterry

    ampaterry *TFF Admin Staff Chaplain* Staff Member Supporting Member

    Dec 20, 2008
    West Tennessee
    Thomas Jefferson, our third president, was earlier the author of the Constitution of the United States. I have heard many argue that Jefferson was not really a believer, but these quotes of his should set that matter to rest:

    "The constitutional freedom of religion [is] the most inalienable and sacred of all human rights."
    --Thomas Jefferson: Virginia Board of Visitors Minutes, 1819.

    "Among the most inestimable of our blessings, also, is that... of liberty to worship our Creator in the way we think most agreeable to His will; a liberty deemed in other countries incompatible with good government and yet proved by our experience to be its best support."
    --Thomas Jefferson: Reply to John Thomas et al., 1807.

    "In our early struggles for liberty, religious freedom could not fail to become a primary object." --Thomas Jefferson to Baltimore Baptists, 1808.

    But to the best of my knowledge, Thomas Jefferson only mentioned the name of Jesus Christ once:

    "[When] the [Virginia] bill for establishing religious freedom... was finally passed,... a singular proposition proved that its protection of opinion was meant to be universal. Where the preamble declares that coercion is a departure from the plan of the holy author of our religion, an amendment was proposed, by inserting the word "Jesus Christ," so that it should read "a departure from the plan of Jesus Christ, the holy author of our religion." The insertion was rejected by a great majority, in proof that they meant to comprehend within the mantle of its protection the Jew and the Gentile, the Christian and Mahometan, the Hindoo and infidel of every denomination."
    --Thomas Jefferson: Autobiography, 1821.

    So, the matter of his eternal condition remains with him – and with God. One thing is for sure; today, Thomas Jefferson knows the truth.

    And, a hundred years from today, each of us will know the truth also.
    I pray that truth is not different than the truth each one accepted while in this world.
  11. BlackEagle

    BlackEagle Well-Known Member Supporting Member

    Nov 25, 2011
    That was a guarantee of religious liberty, not from religious liberty.

    Among the crown jewels in the Tower of London is an item called the Orb and the Cross. One historian remarked that the Orb is under the Cross whether it realises it or not. Regardless of their attitude toward Christ, nations are still under his jurisdiction and control.

    Ephesians 1:19-23
    orb and cross.jpg

    Thanks again, Terry
  12. ampaterry

    ampaterry *TFF Admin Staff Chaplain* Staff Member Supporting Member

    Dec 20, 2008
    West Tennessee
    I had not heard of that, BlackEagle -
    Very interesting - and so true!!

    For today:

    Walter Anderson made an interesting observation in his book Courage is a 3 Letter Word:
    Hundreds of times I have looked into the eyes of a successful person and asked, "When it is dark and you are alone, do you ever say to yourself, What will I do when they find out I'm me?" I've never failed to make a friend with the question. And I've never failed to get a nod. It was as if I knew who they were, that I understood and, because I understood, I could be trusted. I've seen the cool, disciplined, practiced composure of some of America's toughest business leaders melt.

    Does that say that all people think of themselves as performing above their actual ability? Do all people have some deep seated self doubt? No, but it does show that those people with enough ambition and willingness to work to make a resounding success of themselves also innately feel that they somehow do not deserve that success. The world also has many people who are not a success who feel that they deserve more than they have. In between the top and the bottom live the rest of us; we attempt to balance our lives according to God’s word.

    1 Chronicles 28:9 (KJV);
    “And thou, Solomon my son, know thou the God of thy father, and serve him with a perfect heart and with a willing mind: for the LORD searcheth all hearts, and understandeth all the imaginations of the thoughts: if thou seek him, he will be found of thee; but if thou forsake him, he will cast thee off for ever.”

    Gal 6:3-5 (KJV);
    “For if a man think himself to be something, when he is nothing, he deceiveth himself. But let every man prove his own work, and then shall he have rejoicing in himself alone, and not in another. For every man shall bear his own burden.”

    May God bless each one of us with balance -
  13. BlackEagle

    BlackEagle Well-Known Member Supporting Member

    Nov 25, 2011
    Amen, Terry;
    God made us and knows who we are better than we know ourselves...and He still loves us.
  14. ampaterry

    ampaterry *TFF Admin Staff Chaplain* Staff Member Supporting Member

    Dec 20, 2008
    West Tennessee
    It amazes me every day, BlackEagle - -

    For today, I will start with an illustration from the Church of Christ:
    “One characteristic that distinguishes Christianity from all other regions of the world is the teaching of salvation by grace, through faith, apart from human works. For this reason, I was especially interested in the following headline which ran in the Grand Rapids Press: "Conversion to Hindu Faith Is Torturous." The article stated, "A West German businessman has completed his conversion to the Hindu faith by piercing himself through the cheeks with a 1/4-inch thick, 4- foot-long steel rod, and pulling a chariot for 2 miles by ropes attached to his back and chest by steel hooks. Others walk through 20- foot-long pits of fire, don shoes with soles made of nails, or hang in the air spread-eagle from hooks embedded in their backs."”

    Now, contrast that with the Christian faith! Jesus Christ WANTS you to come into his kingdom. God has blessings he WANTS to give you. The invitation is made over and over, and only requires that you ACCEPT it!

    Ephesians 2:8-9 (KJV);
    “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.”

    Titus 3:4-7 (KJV);
    “But after that the kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man appeared, not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; Which he shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour; That being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life.”

    Always seek a church that does not intend to cause you pain.
    Here at my church, I don't even take up an offering.
    There is a birthday box, but it is NOT for you to put money into, as some churches do - instead, it is filled with gifts and you are invited to select one on your birthday.
    There is no dress code, and everyone is encouraged to come COMFORTABLE.
    But I do speak the absolute truth, straight from the Bible - and if that causes you pain, it is from God and not from me; it is for your betterment.

    May God bless each one of you -
  15. jack404

    jack404 Former Guest

    Jan 11, 2010
    For by grace are ye saved through faith;

    and that not of yourselves:

    it is the gift of God:

    Not of works,

    lest any man should boast

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