- Date: September 16, 2019
- Verse: “I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 3:14)
We want to talk a little bit about what it means to give place to the devil in our lives. How is it that this habitual area in some of our lives continues to manifest itself, continues to seem to hold a power over us? We'll see that some of the reason is that we really believe that we're adorned with the armor of God, but we're not. There are pieces missing. We seem to believe that we've really done all to stand.
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Devotionals by Date
- Date: September 11, 2019
- Verse: "Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.” (Ephesians 6:10-11)
First Timothy says it this way, as we're receiving that admonition in this last day, "In the last days, many are going to depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits and doctrines of devils." What are those doctrines? "Well, you know, we have to be careful of the different false doctrines that are out there." False doctrine is knowing the truth and not doing it. False doctrine says you can have a knowledge of God and yet make the final decision on its application in method or in time.
- Date: September 9, 2019
- Verse: “For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure. Do all things without murmurings and disputings: That ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world…” (Philippians 2:13-15)
We're talking about the age that we're living in. It's an evil and perverse generation; isn't it? The verses come to mind, "For … God [is working in us] both to will and to do of his good pleasure. [And] Do all things without murmurings and disputings: that ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world" (Philippians 2:13-15). It explains where we are;
- Date: September 8, 2019
- Verse: “If any man among you seem to be religious, and bridleth not his tongue, but deceiveth his own heart, this man's religion is vain.” (James 1:26)
Our comments about others can go from everything. Like what people do with their own time and their own money. And, as the grapevine goes around and around, it comes back also, you know. I hear the comments about myself and about Greer about how we live and what we do and where we go. And what you think about it. Nothing stays where you spoke it. And as these things continue, you know, and you hear this and you hear that. There are always judgments and questions.
- Date: September 7, 2019
- Verse: “For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's.” (1 Corinthians 6:20)
One of the most dangerous things a fellowship like us can do is begin to trust in our own strength, in our own wisdom. We need to let God be the daily builder of our lives and of our community. Take heed how you build thereon. Take heed that you don't put yourself before Jesus when it comes to leading your family. You had better come to grips with the fact that you don't know, men, what's best for your wives. Jesus does. You don't know what's best for your children. Jesus does.
- Date: September 6, 2019
- Verse: “This wisdom descendeth not from above, but is earthly, sensual, devilish. For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work.” (James 3:15-16)
You can't justify your sin. The Holy Spirit says, "Listen, this wisdom that lies against the truth, that tries to justify its position to allow the tongue full expression- "I have a right to speak my opinion." No you don't. You have a right to love one another, because love will cover a multitude of sins. You don't have a right to slander and to go around and criticize what a brother or sister may have done you think that offended you. The Bible says in Matthew 18, go to them alone. And when you stand praying, forgive.
- Date: September 5, 2019
- Verse: “Even so the tongue is a little member, and boasteth great things. Behold, how great a matter a little fire kindleth!” (James 3:5)
As we saw in our study of Tongues of Fire II, it's not enough that you stop, you also need to stop others. This is not just about speaking, it's about hearing. It can't be tolerated any longer in our midst. We saw some of this spirit not too long ago and some of us just caught ourselves and even had to laugh at ourselves. But you know, it's really not funny. When we just made that little rearrangement of chairs and moved some different things and how people just had to give their opinion and some people were upset that something changed.
- Date: September 4, 2019
- Verse: “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.” (Colossians 3:16)
Psalm 119, verse 11, says, "Thy word have I hid in my heart [out of the abundance of the heart…]: that I might not sin against thee". Because when I hid the Word in my heart in abundance, that is all that will come out. Well, we learn something here, don't we? The Word, Hebrews says, is a discerner of the thoughts and the intentions of the heart. It judges that desperately wicked heart, the Word. "I hid Your Word, that I won't sin against You.
- Date: September 3, 2019
- Verse: “Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.” (Psalms 119:11)
How vexed we are in this Sodom called "America." We need to continue to pray and believe God. We would like to believe that Abraham could stop at ten and get it covered in this nation (Genesis 18:32). That is not our concern. Our concern is us, the guy in your chair. Are we ready? Are we responding to the call, "Who will go for Me?" Have we cried out for the coal to be placed upon our lips?
Look at Matthew 15, Jesus is speaking to us, here, and talking about the heart issue. It is not enough to change your attitude.
- Date: September 2, 2019
- Verse: “A good man out of the good treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is evil: for of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaketh.” (Luke 6:45)
Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. It is the heart issues, here, that we are really talking about. What is in there comes out! Then we say, "Well, I didn't really mean it. Well, I'm sorry I said that." Well, it is fine to apologize. It is even fine to bring about a reconciliation of damages that have been done. But has your heart changed? Is that thing going to come out again next week and next week and next week? Listen to yourself. It is not about whether it is verbalized. It is whether it exists in your heart.
- Date: September 1, 2019
- Verse: "O generation of vipers, how can ye, being evil, speak good things? for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh." (Matthew 12:34)
Look over to Proverbs, Chapter 23 for just a moment. You want to know why many of us get ourselves in trouble by speaking so many corrupt words? It is because we don't have enough Bible in us to fill a conversation. The kingdom is not that important that it would be the source of our conversation. Tragically, the body of Christ and its edification and the glory of God is not our heart's treasure. We need to come to grips with some of those realities, and then change.
- Date: August 31, 2019
- Verse: “He that keepeth his mouth keepeth his life: but he that openeth wide his lips shall have destruction.” (Proverbs 13:3)
Look at James, Chapter 3, verse 8. We have read this passage a number of times already in the study. We see as the Holy Spirit is speaking to us, He says, "The tongue can no man tame." But God can! You might want to put that in there. In fact, in my Bible I have written there, "God can." With God, all things are possible! "The tongue can no man tame. It is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison."
Through this study, have you begun to be frightened of the tongue, this little member a little bit? You should be.
- Date: August 30, 2019
- Verse: “Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord; Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ…” (Ephesians 5:19-20)
Ephesians 4:30 says, "Grieve not the Holy Spirit." He goes into the next chapter and he makes this statement. He says in verse 17 of Chapter 5, "Be not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is." A lot of people want to know what God's will is. Here is the will of the Lord, "Be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess, but be filled with the Spirit."
Being filled with the Spirit is not all about just speaking in tongues. Thank God for our prayer language. We do not minimize it. We are surely not ashamed.
- Date: August 29, 2019
- Verse: “Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers. And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.” (Ephesians 4:29-30)
We have been talking about unity, of being in one accord, how important it is for us to come and find our place in ranking under the headship, the lordship of Jesus. He is the head of this great body, the church. We saw that anything that is done against the church is done against Him, and He takes it personally. Whenever we find ourselves being critical and defaming and causing strife and sedition and all of these different aspects that bring confusion into the church, we are sinning against His lordship. We are sinning against His sovereignty.
- Date: August 28, 2019
- Verse: “For we hear that there are some which walk among you disorderly, working not at all, but are busybodies.” (2 Thessalonians 3:11)
In 2 Thessalonians we see there was disharmony coming into the church. Now, remember the church in Thessalonica was under great persecution. These epistles hold more information about the catching away of the church than any other passages. The persecution was so great that some among them in Thessalonica were being told that they had missed the rapture and that they were in the great tribulation. That's how bad stuff was.
- Date: August 27, 2019
- Verse: “And the servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle unto all men, apt to teach, patient…” (2 Timothy 2:24)
I've learned a lot about humility in these last number of years, and it's no longer just doctrine to me. I've learned that meekness is not weakness, and if the body can be brought together, two are better than one. How can we walk together if we're not agreed? It's the only way your marriages can last especially in this hour that we're living in, where everybody's personal agenda is being promoted. The woman's role: "I'm not fulfilling myself; I don't feel fulfilled unless I'm the CEO. I need to go out and get a job and use my talents and fulfill myself.
- Date: August 26, 2019
- Verse: “Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves.” (Philippians 2:3)
There is no higher calling or greater demonstration of Jesus' lordship than to humble yourself and to prefer others and make them big, seek their wealth and gain, not your own, speaking to edifying, ministering grace to the hearers. We talked about the tale-bearing spirit and what it can do, the damage it can do among us. Proverbs 18:8, "The words of a talebearer are as wounds [we talked about that], and they go down into the [heart]." All of us at one time or another have been slandered.
- Date: August 25, 2019
- Verse: “But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.” (1 John 1:7)
We have the admonition in Ephesians 4:29 not to speak corruptly and, theologically, we all know this. We understand it but somehow make ourselves the exception because what I think just has to be communicated. "People are entitled to hear the truth, and all truth originates with me, my understanding, how I perceive, what I think." How about let's make it spiritual and holy? Why don't we kill one another over love? "They are not loving me properly," so we want to gossip and kill them, talking about how they are not showing us the kind of love we think we deserve.
- Date: August 24, 2019
- Verse: “Let no corrupt word out of your mouth go forth, but what is good unto the needful building up, that it may give grace to the hearers and make not sorrowful the Holy Spirit of God, in which ye were sealed to a day of redemption.” (Ephesian 4:29-30)
We want to guard against allowing the enemy into our midst. "Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying…." Edifying, building up, always building up.
- Date: August 23, 2019
- Verse: “In the multitude of words there wanteth not sin: but he that refraineth his lips is wise.” (Proverbs 10:19)
In this powerful passage in Ephesians, the Holy Spirit is speaking by the apostle. I love these words. In Ephesians, Chapter 4, verse 29, he says, "Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good…." Now, we said one of the ways that we can start off on the right foot is just speak fewer words. The Bible says, "…be swift to hear…." "In the [abundance] of words there wanteth not sin: but he that refraineth his lips is wise" (Proverbs 10:19). Help yourself out; talk less. Talk less.