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DAILY RENEWAL : THINK ABOUT THE CONSEQUENCES

DAILY RENEWAL : THINK ABOUT THE CONSEQUENCES

Scripture of the Day || July 10th, 2018

The sons of Reuben the firstborn of Israel (he was the first born, but when he defiled his father’s marriage bed, his rights as firstborn were given to the sons of Joseph; so he could not be listed in the genealogical record in accordance with his birthright, and though Judah was the strongest of his brothers and a ruler came from him, the rights of the firstborn belonged to Joseph)  

I Chronicles 5:1-3

Genesis 35:22 records these words: “While he was living there, Reuben had intercourse with Bilhah, his father’s concubine, and Jacob soon heard about it…”  “Jacob soon heard about it” could be an indication that the rumors must have been circulating around before Jacob finally heard about it. It is interesting that there was is no indication that Jacob dealt with this unacceptable behavior until he was about to take his last breath. There are many things that we could conjecture: Did Jacob ever forgive Reuben or was he bitter against Reuben all the rest of his life culminating in the curse he released upon him before he died? Was Reuben ever repentant? There is no record of him asking his father for forgiveness.

Jacob cursed Reuben on his deathbed in Gen 49: “Reuben, you are my first born, my might, the first sign of my strength, excelling in honor, excelling in power. Turbulent as the waters, you will no longer excel, for you went up onto your father’s bed, onto my couch and defiled it.” Jacob placed a spiritual halt on the earthly progress of his son. Reuben would no longer excel in honor and power. He lost his right and blessings as the firstborn son.

There are many lessons from the passage: First: Our actions have consequences. God will certainly forgive us when we repent but the consequences might not necessarily be eradicated. We must deal with sin in a very radical way; put aside our pride and ask for forgiveness from those we offend no matter how humiliating that might be. Not dealing with our sins can result in unpleasant outcomes, sometimes years later. That was the case with Reuben. There is no record in the Bible that he dealt with his sinful conduct against his father.

Second: When people offend us, we must reach out and  “confront” them appropriately. We should not harbor it and act as if all is well only to “blow up” later. That is what Jacob did. He did not show his anger or bitterness against Reuben until he was about to die. Life and death is in the power of the tongue. Jacob spoke death to Reuben’s future from his deathbed.

Third: We must always be respectful of authority as the Bible teaches. It is God who sets people in authority; whether spiritual, family, civil or political. Even when we disagree with them, we are to honor and not disrespect them. We can still point out our disagreement in a respectful and honorable manner. It never pays to disrespect authority because it is tantamount to disrespecting the God who appointed that authority. The Bible says: “Obey your spiritual leaders, and do what they say. Their work is to watch over your souls, and they are accountable to God. Give them reason to do this with joy and not with sorrow. That would certainly not be to your benefit” (Hebrews 13:17). May God help us to be mindful of our words and actions because they have consequences.

Prayer: Father, please help me to be righteous in what I do and say, because they have positive and negative consequences. May the words of my mouth, the meditation of my heart and the actions of my life, bring honor and not pain to your heart and destruction to my life. Amen.

Courtesy of RENEWAL CHRISTIAN CENTER

DAILY RENEWAL : FINDING DIVINE FAVOR AMIDST WICKEDNESS

DAILY RENEWAL : FINDING DIVINE FAVOR AMIDST WICKEDNESS

Scripture of the Day || July 9th, 2018

When human beings began to increase in number on the earth,…the LORD said, “My Spirit will not contend with humans forever…The LORD saw how great the wickedness of the human race had become on earth, and that every inclination of  the thoughts of the human heart was evil all the time. The LORD regretted that He had made humans on the earth, and His heart was deeply troubled.

So the LORD said, “I will wipe from the face of the earth the human race I have created… for I regret that I have made them. But Noah found favor in the eyes of the LORD.

Genesis 6:1-8.

What a moment! God made humans in His own image, and likeness. He blessed them, equipped them to be fruitful and exercise dominion as His personal representatives on earth. But humans wickedly colluded with the Devil and turned their backs on God. The human heart was filled with continual wickedness and the heart of God was filled with grief! God regretted that He created humans and determined to wipe them off from the earth. But one man, Noah, found favor in the eyes of God.

I have seen situations where parents have been so troubled by the unacceptable behaviors of their children that they have actually regretted giving birth to them. So, as humans, we can identify with the pain, regret and disappointment God was feeling. After all, God is our Father and Maker. We were fashioned after His likeness!

But the difference between us and God is that God is absolutely Holy and can never be wicked. God never gives up on us, no matter how wicked we become. Somehow God always reaches back to humanity and finds a way to rescue us. So, even though God was determined to wipe out the entire human race, He paused when he saw one person, Noah, who found favor before Him. As the story unfolds, we see God preserving  humanity through Noah!

The times in which we live are frighteningly wicked. There is unimaginable greed, injustice, selfishness, ingratitude and a plain lack of sympathy for the less privileged. The human heart seems to be gushing out nothing but wickedness. But all is not lost, God could still find “Noahs” through whom he can turn things around. When one person finds favor in the eyes of God, there is no telling what God will do. God could bring about a revival because of one person.

You and I could be God’s Noah in our communities and in our country. It takes risking being ridiculed and maligned for living authentically for Jesus but that is the only path.

May you and I position ourselves as “Noahs” who find favor before God and through whom God brings preservation.

Prayer: Lord, may I be a Noah and find favor in your sight. Amen.

Courtesy of RENEWAL CHRISTIAN CENTER

DAILY RENEWAL – THE LORD IS ALWAYS WITH YOU.

DAILY RENEWAL – THE LORD IS ALWAYS WITH YOU.

July 8th, 2018 || Scripture of the Day

Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence?

If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.

If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast…

For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb.

I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that too well.

My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.

Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.

How precious to me are your thoughts, God! How vast is the sum of them.

Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand – when I awake, I am still with you.     

Psalm 139:7-18

Do you ever doubt if God is close by you? Do you ever wonder what God thinks about you? Do you ever wonder whether God really knows what you are going through in life? Do you really know how valuable and wonderful you are to God? Does it ever occur to you that you are God’s Masterpiece regardless of how you see yourself or how you feel?

So how about if you started seeing yourself the way God sees you? How about if you started seeing yourself as a true Masterpiece from God? How about if you really came to understand the depth of God’s love for you and the vastness of His precious plans for your life? Would it change your self esteem and perception in life? Would it give you new confidence and boldness? Would it melt away your depressive thoughts? Would it give you new energy for life?

I believe King David must have been going through some soul searching when he wrote this Psalm. He must have been wondering if God was truly close by and whether God even thought about him and his situation. He allowed the Spirit of God to open the eyes of his understanding and then he declared: “I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful…how precious to me are your thoughts, God! How vast is the sum of them. Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand – when I awake, I am still with you.” David realized that he was very precious to God; and God was with him.

Don’t bow down and bury your head in melancholy! You are precious to God, your circumstances notwithstanding. Take hold of the real truth! God is right by your side. God knows every occurrence of everyday of your life before it even comes to be. He is never surprised by the events of your life. He knows it all and He has already prepared the solution for you. His thoughts for you are precious and more numerous than you can count. So take heart. God is close by you. Take pride in who you are and whose you are – You are fearfully and wonderfully made.

Prayer: Father, I thank you for your indescribable love for me. Amen.

Courtesy of RENEWAL CHRISTIAN CENTER

DAILY RENEWAL – RIGHTEOUS LIVING MIGHT NOT BE THAT COMPLICATED!

DAILY RENEWAL – RIGHTEOUS LIVING MIGHT NOT BE THAT COMPLICATED!

July 7th, 2018 || Scripture of the Day

One of the teachers of the law came and heard them debating. Noticing that Jesus had given them a good answer, he asked Him, “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?”

“The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this”: ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’

There is no commandment greater than these.”   

Mark 12:28-31.

The religious leaders in the time of Jesus had made life very complicated for those who wanted to serve God. The rules imposed on people to be observed had become mountainous! The Ten Commandments which were meant to give people a solid path to a good, enjoyable and godly way to relate to God and each other, had been buried under piles of human traditions and regulations. But Jesus came to set us free from all those human additions so that we can relate to God in a genuine and uncomplicated fashion.

Jesus made it clear that all the commandments of God could be summed up in a very simplified way. First: The most important one is to love God with all our heart and with all our soul and with all our mind and with all our strength.

Second: Love your neighbor as yourself.

As children of God, I wonder how our lives would be like if we put ourselves in “auto pilot” and allowed these two commandments to settle at the core of our beings? What if we were so in love with God that every action we took was informed foundationally by our desire to honor, revere  and please Him? How about if we automatically asked ourselves: “Is the way I am spending my time, talents and treasures pleasing to God?” In other words are the decisions I am making reflecting my love for God? Does He have all my heart, soul, might and strength?

How about our neighbor – the person I encounter in my everyday living? My neighbor – my spouse, children, family, co-workers, fellow students, strangers on the bus or train, people I meet at the bank or the grocery store, or even fellow drivers on the road? How about if I simply had it as an “auto response” that I will love them as myself by treating them the way I would want them to treat me?

So, because I love my neighbor as myself I will not: steal from him; I will not bear false witness about him; I will not lie about him; I will not take sexual advantage; I will not slander him; I will not gossip about him… Instead, I will treat him with the same love I expect from him: I will help my neighbor as far as it is within my ability to do so.

Someone recently shared a story of how two individuals reached out to her and simply blessed her by using their time and talents to meet some rather critical needs in her life. They did it all for free. One of them actually spent several hours after work on two consecutive days to use his expertise in helping her. She was very grateful and asked if I could reach out to those individuals with “thank you” phone calls. The truth is: Those individuals could have charged her for their services but they saw an opportunity to express practical love to a “neighbor” and they did. They loved her as themselves by doing for her what they would have expected others to do for them if they found themselves in a similar situation.

Righteous living might not be that complicated after all. We can love God and love our neighbors with the help of the Spirit of God within us. Sure, we will blow it many times but genuinely loving God and loving our neighbor the way God requires of us is not impossible with the help of the Spirit of God. He gave us the commands so He can help us live them out!

Prayer: Father, in my own strength it is impossible to love you and love my neighbor as myself. I ask that Holy Spirit will help me to live out your word. Amen

Courtesy of RENEWAL CHRISTIAN CENTER

DAILY RENEWAL – WHEN GOD TAKES HIS HANDS OFF

DAILY RENEWAL – WHEN GOD TAKES HIS HANDS OFF

July 6th, 2018 || Scripture of the Day

So, in the ninth year of Zedekiah’s reign…Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon marched against Jerusalem with his whole army. He encamped outside the city and built siege works all around it. The city was kept under siege until the eleventh year of king Zedekiah.

By the ninth day of the fourth month the famine in the city had become so severe that there was no food for the people to eat. Then the city wall was broken through and the whole army fled at night…but the Babylonian army pursued the king and overtook him in the plains of Jericho…and he was captured.

He was taken to the king of Babylon at Riblah, where sentence was pronounced on him. They killed the sons of Zedekiah before his eyes. Then they put out his eyes, bound him with bronze shackles and took him to Babylon…

Nebuzaradan, commander of the imperial guard, an official of the king of Babylon came to Jerusalem. He set fire to the temple of the LORD, the royal palace and all the houses of Jerusalem. Every important building he burned to the ground…(and) broke down the walls around Jerusalem.

Nebuzaradan…carried into exile the people who remained in the city…but the commander left behind some of the poorest people of the land to work the vineyards…

The Babylonians broke up the bronze pillars, the movable stands and the bronze sea that were at the temple of the LORD and they carried the bronze to Babylon…

2 Kings 25:1-13

The picture is clear: Life without God is a hopeless end! We might appear to be prospering without God’s involvement in our lives but in the end, it all comes crashing down. That is what happened to God’s people, Israel.

God brought His people out of Egypt with an incredible display of divine power. He supernaturally rained down manna for them and even gave them quails to eat when they were craving for meat in the desert. God parted the Red Sea, parted the Jordan, caused the walls of Jericho to tumble down and even caused the Sun and the Moon to stand still just so that the Israelites could defeat their enemies and possess the Promised Land.

God had a covenant relationship with Israel: Israel was to serve God alone and no other god besides Him. They were His chosen people and they were expected to keep His commands and be a model nation for the people around them. But repeatedly, Israel rejected God and became obsessed with the worship of other gods. Things were so terrible that even the temple of God was desecrated by the building of images of other gods within the temple. All the warnings God gave to His children fell on deaf ears.

In keeping with the terms of the covenant, God took His hands off and allowed Israel to be destroyed by her enemies. Their land was invaded; their king was captured; the walls of Jerusalem were torn down and the people were marched off into exile!

There is a rather sobering lesson here which we mostly do not want to hear or even be reminded of: God is both a God of grace and a God of judgment. He is compassionate but He definitely moves in the fullness of time to bring severe judgment. We can never presume on the grace of God, turn our backs on Him, reject His word and expect Him to be all smiles all the time. It is never a pleasant thing when God takes His hands off as He did with Israel.

May we be so full of love for God that our relationship will be one of a healthy fear of who He is and not live to grieve Him. Let’s not push the Spirit of God away from us but rather live to delight continually in His presence. May we not push His hand away but rather draw Him closer.

Prayer: Father, I thank you  for the deep love and grace you have for me. Please help me to live in a healthy fear of you so that your hand and Presence will be with me at all times. Amen.

Courtesy of RENEWAL CHRISTIAN CENTER

DAILY RENEWAL – SPEAK GOD’S WORD WITH BOLDNESS

DAILY RENEWAL – SPEAK GOD’S WORD WITH BOLDNESS

July 5th, 2018 || Scripture of the Day

On their release, Peter and John went back to their own people and reported all that the chief priests and the elders had said to them. When they heard this, they raised their voices to God in prayer… “Why do the nations rage and the people plot in vain?”…Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak your word with great boldness. Stretch out your hand to heal and perform signs and wonders through the name of your holy servant Jesus.”

After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly.

Acts 4:23-31

The Early Church functioned under great threats, resistance and opposition. Their only crime was that they preached the Good News that Jesus had risen from the grave and was reconciling humanity to God. This angered the religious leaders, but the disciples did not back down. They depended upon prayer and the power of the Holy Spirit to proclaim the Gospel.Their primary focus was the proclamation of the Gospel.

It is interesting that when the disciples gathered in prayer after Peter and John had been threatened and released, their first prayer point was: “Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak your word with great boldness…”

The Bible records that after they prayed, “they were  all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly.”

The disciples did not even ask God for protection from their their enemies. Their first request was enablement to  boldly declare the word of God followed by signs and wonders. The word was their first priority. People need the word of God. There is power in the word of God. Faith and transformation come from hearing the word of God. When we focus on boldly declaring the word of God, God will vindicate us with signs and wonders.

Would you enmesh yourself in the word of God? Would you boldly share the word with a hungry world. Watch God accompany your life with signs and wonders as you declare His word with boldness.

Prayer: Father, I thank you for your word. I ask that you give me the grace and boldness to declare your word with power and authority wherever I go. I ask this in Jesus’ name. Amen.

Courtesy of RENEWAL CHRISTIAN CENTER

DAILY RENEWAL – WHAT IS TRUE FREEDOM?

DAILY RENEWAL – WHAT IS TRUE FREEDOM?

July 4th, 2018 || Scripture of the Day

To the Jews who had believed Him, Jesus said “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free…

So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.   

John 8:32- 36.

“The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because He has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free…”

Luke 4:18

From ages past, humans have fought for their freedom.

Our first “fight” for “freedom” was when was sought to set ourselves “free” from God by believing the satanic lie that God was not really interested in our well being because He was keeping us from eating the fruit from the tree of the knowledge of Good and Evil. We fell for that deception, and realized that Satan had only defeated us and put us in bondage to sin. It was a choice we made. We exercised our “freedom” from God only to regretfully find out that our so called freedom would only land us in bondage and give us a covering of leaves on our bodies.

Our innocence disappeared. Our joyous communication with God was lost and we were banished from the garden of Eden. The free ride was over. Picking and eating from whatever tree we desired in the beautiful garden of Eden was no longer an option. We had to toil for every morsel of food we fed our bodies. (Genesis 3).

The heart of humans became so wicked that the Bible says: “The LORD saw how great the wickedness of the human race had become on the earth, and that every inclination of the thoughts of the human heart was only evil all the time. The LORD regretted that He had made human beings on the earth, and His heart was deeply troubled.” (Genesis 6:5-6).

So, what was the end of our so called freedom? God ended up destroying the entire world with a massive flood. He only spared the righteous man Noah and his family and restarted the human race with them. But evil still resurfaced. The story of humanity has been riddled with greed, killings and wars. Humans have subjected, controlled, and destroyed one another. The powerful have even subjected to other humans to years of enslavement. But God raised up concerned righteous people to fight for their freedom. He always does and always will through His word and chosen vessels.

Humans have fought costly and very destructive wars to free themselves from subjugation to other humans. We have even fought “World Wars.” to secure our freedom from evil. Nations have fought wars of independence and foreign powers to the same end.

But question: Why are humans still in bondage to wickedness, bondage and imprisonment to destructive tendencies in spite of all we do to free ourselves? The rich and poor, great and least, educated and uneducated, literate and illiterate are subject to the same plight!  We are helpless in our own strength to free ourselves from evil thoughts and acts.

The reason? We have rejected the only true source of freedom. We have rejected Jesus, the Savior of the world and the freedom He offers us through His word! Jesus says: “If you hold to my teachings, you are truly my disciples and you shall know the truth, and the truth will set you free…” Jesus came to set captives free and to release the oppressed. So, as individuals, families, communities or nations, there can be no freedom apart from walking with Jesus and living in obedience to His word. Without His person and His truth, there is no true freedom. God’s word and His commands never puts us in bondage. It only sets us free.

Is that really true? Absolutely! If it wasn’t true, humanity would not have endured all the sufferings we have been encountering in our existence. Even God’s Church has not been living as true disciples of Jesus; hence Satan continues to have free reign because we do not hold on to the teachings of Jesus. So how do we gain true freedom? Jesus and the Word of God is the answer. Living by God’s word and statutes is the greatest source of freedom you will ever know. What freedom is there in lying, committing adultery, coveting what belongs to others, disrespecting your parents, or committing murder? Nothing but bondage! True freedom is found in Christ and His teachings alone. It has no equal in history.

Prayer: Lord, without you and the truth of your word, my life will be held in bondage by the evil one. Please help me to enjoy the freedom that only comes from you and your word. Amen.

Courtesy of RENEWAL CHRISTIAN CENTER

DAILY RENEWAL – GOD WILL COMFORT AND MULTIPLY YOU

DAILY RENEWAL – GOD WILL COMFORT AND MULTIPLY YOU

July 3rd, 2018 || Scripture of the Day

“Listen to me, you who pursue righteousness and who seek the LORD: Look to the rock from which you were cut and from the quarry from which you were hewn.

Look to Abraham your father and to Sara, who gave you birth. When I called him, he was only one man, and I blessed him and made him many. The LORD will surely comfort Zion and will look with compassion on all her ruins, He will make her deserts like Eden, her wastelands like the garden of the LORD; Joy and gladness will be found in her. Thanksgiving and the sound of gladness.”        

Isaiah 51:1-3

There are times when it seems as if “our land” – our life has become a dry unfruitful desert. There is no multiplication and nothing seems to be growing. The pain never ceases; the sickness is lingering; the people we need to help us accomplish the vision we have in our hearts are simply not being released by God to us; the finances are very shaky; the family squabbles are unceasing; the children are out of line; the job is too stressful and even uncertain; the business is almost running aground…we just can’t seem to have a handle on things!

Those are times when it seems not just to be “raining trouble” but actually “pouring trouble.” Our attempts to do things to mitigate the situation only make things worse. To even confound us more, we ask ourselves: “Am I not living faithfully for God? I know I am so God where are you God? Do you have a word for me? Am I going to end in ruin? Will I be crushed by my problems? I am doing everything I can so what else is there to do?”

 Well, those are very legitimate concerns and feelings. But take comfort. you are not alone in what you are feeling and experiencing. There was a time when Moses felt so overwhelmed in light of all the trouble he was experiencing from the Israelites that he asked God to end his life so that he would not face his own ruin. In the Garden of Gethsemane, the thought of the cross was so heavy on Jesus that He asked the Father to let it pass away from him if possible!

God brought Moses through and He strengthened Jesus to go to the cross.

So the LORD is saying to you: “Don’t give up on continuing to live righteously for me. I can cause your drought to become fruitful like the garden of Eden. I can multiply you like I multiplied Abraham who was just one person when I called him. I have not forgotten about you, I will comfort you and multiply you. Just continue to look up to me”

Take a moment to reflect over this. God has not changed. God’s not dead. God is still faithful. God is still saving and redeeming. God is still working miracles. God can still do exceedingly abundantly above all that you can ever ask or think according to His power that that is at work in you. Continue to live for Jesus and look up to Him. You might feel as if your faith is in crisis. But it is not an abnormal thing to experience. It is part of the journey of the Christian faith. In the end, God always wins for His children.  God will comfort and multiply you.

Prayer: Father, I feel rather overwhelmed; but help me to continue to look up to you. Amen.

Courtesy of RENEWAL CHRISTIAN CENTER

DAILY RENEWAL – A TRUE REVIVAL IS NEEDED

DAILY RENEWAL – A TRUE REVIVAL IS NEEDED

July 2nd, 2018 || Scripture of the Day

Then the king called together all the elders of Judah and Jerusalem. He went up to the temple of the LORD with the people of Judah, the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the priests and the prophets – all the people from the least to the greatest. He read in their hearing all the words of the Book of the Covenant, which had been found in the temple of the LORD.

The King stood by the pillar and renewed the covenant in the presence of the LORD – to follow the LORD and keep His commands, statutes and decrees with all his heart and all his soul, thus confirming the words of the covenant written in this book. Then all the people pledged themselves to the covenant.

The king ordered Hilkiah the high priest, the priests next in rank and the doorkeepers to remove from the temple of the LORD all the articles made for Baal and Asherah and all the starry hosts…

He also tore down the quarters of the male shrine prostitutes that were in the temple of the LORD, the quarters where women did weaving for Asherah.

2 Kings 23:1-7

When the Word of God is neglected in the lives of God’s people, all kinds of substitutes are brought in. The kings of Judah had neglected the word of God and in its place, articles of Baal and Asherah and all the starry hosts had taken prominence. Even male prostitutes had found residence in God’s Holy Temple. The nation had totally gone astray and was living in chaos and defeat. They had become defenseless and easy prey for their enemies. God had distanced Himself from them because they had chosen to reject Him!

But young king Josiah was told about the Book of the Law which had been found in the temple. It was read to him and he realized the great sin of the nation in rejecting the word of God. He was determined to bring the nation back to God. He assembled everyone, great and small alike before the LORD. He read the word of God in the hearing of all the people and pledged to personally adhere to it. Then all the people pledged to do likewise. They got rid of all the false gods which had been given prominence in the temple and publicly burned them. This was nothing short of a true revival! God’s word was going to be the standard again.

What is definitely worth noting is that both the king and the people pledged to keep the Word of God. They got rid of all the false gods but central to all the fervor and feverish activities was the pledge to live by God’s word! Any true revival or renewal must always result in a desire to put God’s word at the center of God’s Church. There can be no true revival without that.

That is what we need today! We need a renewal that will lead God’s people back to God through His Spirit and His word. Without a true return to God’s convicting word through the work of His Spirit, no life can be changed and no heart can be transformed and no true renewal can be experienced. May the LORD help us to proclaim and live by His word! There is simply no substitute for that.

Prayer: Father, please help me to place your word at the very center of my life. Amen.

Courtesy of RENEWAL CHRISTIAN CENTER

DAILY RENEWAL – FIND THE BOOK OF THE LAW:GOD’S WORD

DAILY RENEWAL – FIND THE BOOK OF THE LAW:GOD’S WORD

July 1st, 2018 || Scripture of the Day

Josiah was eight years old when he became king…

In the eighteenth year of his reign, king Josiah sent the secretary, Shaphan son of Meshullam, to the temple of the LORD. He said: “Go up to Hilkiah the high priest and have him get ready the money that has been brought into the temple of the LORD, which the doorkeepers have collected from the people. Have them entrust it to the men appointed to supervise the work on the temple. And have them pay the workers who repair the temple of the LORD… Also have them purchase timber and dressed stone to repair the temple”…

Hilkiah the high priest said to Shaphan the secretary, “I have found the Book of the Law in the temple of the LORD.” He gave it to Shaphan, who read it…

Then Shaphan the secretary informed the king, “Hilkiah the priest has given me a book.” And Shaphan read from it in the presence of the king.

When the king heard the words of the Book of the Law, he tore his robes. He gave these orders to Hilkiah the priest…”Go and inquire of the LORD for me and for the people and for all Judah about what is written in this book that has been found. Great is the LORD’s anger that burns against us because those who have gone before us have not obeyed the words of this book; they have not acted in accordance with all that is written there concerning us.”  

2 Kings 22:1-13

God chose the nation of Israel to be His own special possession. Through them, the rest of humanity would come into a saving relationship with God. The centerpiece of God’s covenant relationship with Israel was the keeping of the Book of the Law. The Book of the Law (The Word of God) spelt out how God wanted them to live as His people and how to relate to the people around them. Living according to the Book of the Law was to ensure that they remained a Holy People set apart for God Himself. It would also ensure their continued blessing just as God had assured Joshua that keeping His word would bring him success and prosperity (Joshua 1:8).

With the passage of time, however, the people forgot about Yahweh. Led by their kings, they started worshipping all kinds of idols. They even worshiped the stars and the moon. Obviously God was very displeased and was poised to pronounce upon the people the consequences He had warned would come upon them if they were unfaithful to Him and rejected His Law.

It is rather amazing that the nation had so forgotten about God that God’s temple was in ruins and the Book of the Law had been totally neglected – it was actually lost somewhere in the temple! The high priest happened to find it when King Josiah ordered some clean up and repair work on the temple!

King Josiah tore his clothes when he heard the news and listened to God’s word from the Book of the Law. He realized that their forefathers had done them a great disservice by ignoring God’s word and serving all kinds of gods. He knew there was trouble on the horizon!

The word of God is central in our relationship with Him. Whenever the word is “lost” in our relationship with God, we only invite trouble upon ourselves because we live life according to our own rules and terms. Unfortunately, we live in a time when the Word of God is “lost” in God’s temple (His Church). No wonder there is so much pain and confusion in God’s Church and in the lives of God’s children. It is time to find the Book of the Law and make it central to the lives of God’s people. It has to be foundational to all we do. Without it life is painful, meaningless and full of confusion. Put the Book of the Law at the core of your life and you will never regret it!

Prayer: Lord, please forgive us for ignoring your word and living our lives according to our own rules and dictates. Help us to make your word central in our lives and your Church. Amen.

Courtesy of RENEWAL CHRISTIAN CENTER