Thursday, March 31, 2016


Col. 2:11-12 When you came to Christ, you were "circumcised," but not by a physical procedure--the cutting away of your sinful nature. For you were buried with Christ when you were baptized. And with him you were raised to a new life because you trusted the mighty power of God, who raised Christ from the dead.

I like the way the Apostle Paul describes what happens when we let Christ be our Savior. We are spiritually circumcised. The old sinful nature that we are born with goes underneath the knife and cut away from us. We become new creations in Christ. Jesus gives us a new nature, one that desires to not sin instead of wanting to sin. He changes our perspective on life and we now live to serve Him and not ourselves. Instead of seeing life as the world sees and understands it, we know see things from an eternal perspective and live for what is yet to come instead of what is now.

When we turn our lives over to Christ, the power of God begins to work in us. God has the power to do exactly what He says He does: He takes our sins away from us, casts them into the sea of His forgetfulness, purifies our souls, and gives us eternal life. God never fails to change the soul who comes to Him with humility and brokenness over sin. He never fails to forgive the soul who sincerely asks Him to. He never fails to claim us as His children when we trust Him and believe what He will do for us.

In Christ we are raised to a new life. There is no continuation of the life we once lived. Salvation is not just a word; it's a life change. Everyone who is truly saved is in the process of becoming more and more like God in His holiness. If we are not changing, we are not truly saved.

Wednesday, March 30, 2016


Col. 2:9-10 For in Christ the fullness of God lives in a human body, and you are complete through your union with Christ. He is the Lord over every ruler and authority in the universe.

In Christ the fullness of God lives in a human body. In other words, Jesus is fully God. There is no part of Jesus that is not God. Jesus was God in human form. God chose to become human so that He could make it possible for us to know Him in a personal way. There is a mystery to this in that while God became man, He still remained in heaven at the same time. Only God understands how He could dwell on earth and in heaven at the same time. And while He was on earth, He lived submissively and obediently to himself. He limited himself to the human experience so that He would know what it was to experience what we do in life and show us how to live without sin. Because He lived without ever sinning, He was able to become our sacrifice for sin and open up heaven's doors to us.

In Christ, we are made complete. There is nothing lacking in us who are children of God that prevents us from living in victory over sin. In Christ, we have all the resources of God available to us so that we can live holy lives, pleasing and acceptable to God. We fail only because we don't utilize what is ours in Christ.

Jesus is Lord over every ruler and authority that exists in all of God's creation. Nothing happens without His knowledge or approval. He put it all together, holds it all together, and permits it to stay together. Man is powerless against Him. All of the angels in heaven are subject to Him. All the demonic forces are subject to His authority. When He comes and takes the saints out of the earth, He will loosen His control as sin is judged on earth and God creates the new heaven and earth.

Jesus is God and God is Jesus, the King of kings and Lord of lords forever and ever. Amen.

Tuesday, March 29, 2016


Col. 2:6-7 And now, just as you accepted Christ Jesus as your Lord, you must continue to live in obedience to him. Let your roots grow down into him and draw up nourishment from him, so you will grow in faith, strong and vigorous in the truth you were traught. Let your lives overflow with thanksgiving for all he has done.

Notice, accepting Christ as our Lord is not the end; rather, it's just the beginning. We must continue to live in obedience to Him. Jesus cannot be our Lord without our being submissive to Him and obedient to Him.

We are to let our roots grow down into Him and draw from Him what we need to grow in faith. You will find nothing helpful to your spiritual grow outside of Christ. In Him we find all that we need. The closer we live to Him, the stronger and healthier our faith will be.

When we live in Christ and let Him feed our souls, we become strong and vigorous. The reason why so many of us are week and anemic is that we do not take seriously our need to let the Lord feed our souls. We don't bother with spending time in fellowship with Him in the Word and in our prayer closets. We do not build on the things we have learned; we tend to want to coast our way to heaven. And, it simply does not work.

As we live in Christ, we should overflow with thanksgiving for all that Christ has done for us. Daily we should express our gratitude to Him for all He has done, is doing, and will continue to do in us.

Monday, March 28, 2016


Col. 2:4 I tell you this so that no one may deceive you by fine-sounding arguments. For though I am absent from you in body, I am present with you in spirit and delight to see how orderly you are and how firm your faith in Christ is.

People can be very persuasive. There always has been those who say things that sound pretty convincing, whether it's true or not. The church has been plagued by such people ever since its conception. There are those who are masters at taking the Scriptures out of context, twisting them to say what they want them to say, and mingling them into false teachings in such a way as to make them sound true. Many people have been deceived and base their lives on things that simply are not true.

The only way to be sure that what you believe to be true is to stay personally grounded in the Word of God. Each of us must be students of the Word. We must stay closely connected to the Lord so that when the Holy Spirit speaks to us we will recognize His voice and listen to Him. We must know for certain what God's Word says and what it means. We must be so grounded in the truth from God that we can discern that which is truth from that which is false.

It was the Apostle Paul's passion in life, to see people build their lives on that which is true from God and not the beliefs and opinions of man. Paul took great delight in knowing that people were properly understanding what God was teaching them. He preached and wrote about that which God revealed to him, and only that which came from God. He knew he was proclaiming truth because he was focused on Christ alone and spent much time alone with him.

How firm is your faith? Are you absolutely sure of what you claim to believe? Can you say with confidence that what you believe is from God because you are so close to Him that when He speaks you can hear Him speak? Only those who stay near to the heart of God can be sure that they are basing their lives on that which is true and not untruth.

Sunday, March 27, 2016


Col. 1:28-29 So everywhere we go, we tell everyone about Christ. We warn them and teach them with all the wisdom God has given us, for we want to present them to God, perfect in their relationship with Christ. I work very hard at this, as I depend on Christ’s mighty power that works within me.

We are part of the persona of Christ. Everywhere we go we are telling people about Christ by the way we live our lives. What we say and do sends a strong message about who Christ is. It is imperative that we live so that Christ will be seen for who He really is.

We are part of the proclamation of Christ. We have been given a very clear and strong message of God’s redeeming love. We must warn and teach others about Christ and His ways. Where people will spend eternity may very well hinge on whether or not we obey the Lord and share our faith with them. God gives us wisdom so that we will know what to say when it is time to speak out, so if we fail to share the Gospel message it is disobedience; it is sin. Speak frequently about Christ and our redemption to everyone you can and if words fail you, let your life speak for you. The Gospel does no one any good if it is not freely shared.

It should be our heart’s desire to present to God souls ready for the Kingdom of God. If we have God’s love governing our hearts, we will long to help others be prepared for heaven. Love compels us to promote healthy relationships with Christ.

It’s not an easy thing to do and it requires a lot of work on our part to be a help and not a hindrance to the faith of others. We can do it if we are dependant on Christ’s power and not our own. Let us commit ourselves to the task for the glory of Christ.

Saturday, March 26, 2016


Col. 1:22b-23 You were his enemies separated from him by your evil thoughts and actions, yet now he has brought you back as his friends. He has done this through his death on the cross in his own human body. As a result, he has brought you into the very presence of God, and you are holy and blameless as you stand before him without a single fault.

You were an enemy of God. Your evil thoughts and actions kept you seperated from Him. No one can claim otherwise. We were born into sin and stayed in our sins until we opened up our hearts to Christ. If you haven't done that yet, you are still a sinner, an enemy of God. If you have turned to Christ and sought His forgiveness for your sins, you are now a friend of God. It's not something you have done; it's what Christ has done for you.

Jesus died on the cross for our sins. God took on our humanity, lived a sinless life on earth, went to the cross of Calvary, took our sins, guilt, and shame upon His own heart, and died for our sins so that He can bring us into the presence of God. When Jesus died, He broke down all barriers that kept us from God. He went back to heaven and now serves there as our way to God. In Christ we are made holy and blameless, able to draw near to God. In Christ, and only in Christ, we are able to stand before God without fault.

We are then compelled to stay in close fellowship with Christ. We must strive to let Him always be Lord of our lives. We must stand guard over our souls and quickly confess our sins to Him when we do sin, and we do. We must stay in God's Word so that we will recognize our sins. We must understand our constant need to live in Christ. Otherwise, we will not be able to draw near to God. We cannot approach God on our own; we need Jesus.

Friday, March 25, 2016


Col. 1:19-21a For God in all his fullness was pleased to live in Christ and by him God reconciled everything to himself. He made peace with everything in heaven and on earth by means of his blood on the cross. This includes you who were once so far away from God.

God in all His fullness lived in Christ when Christ lived on earth. Jesus was the fleshly embodiment of God. He limited himself to life on earth and would not display all of His godliness while here, but it does not change who He is. Jesus is God and God is Jesus. There is no difference whatsoever between the two.

It pleased God to live His life on earth for a season. God did not take on human life reluctantly or begrudgingly. It was something He chose to do and it brought Him pleasure to do it because He loves us and knew that it was the only way we could really get to know Him and have a relationship with Him.

While on earth, God made everything right. Sin had distorted, divided, and destroyed the life that God had intended man to enjoy on earth. Everything and everyone was a mess. There was no way for man to live in peace and with the blessings of God upon him. Jesus took care of the problem we had created by our disobedience. He restored the way to fellowship with God. He made it possible for us to have peace with God and enjoy the blessings of God.

Through His dying on the cross, all people now have access to God. No one is without hope. If we want to be restored to a right relationship with God, we can be. No one is beyond the reach of God's love. Jesus forgives the sins of all who come to Him in faith, trusting in Him alone for forgiveness.

Even though no one deserves God's forgiveness, for everyone is guilty of sin and deserves an eternity spent in hell, all are forgiven who come to the cross, confesses their sins, and trusts in Christ as their Savior and Lord.

Thursday, March 24, 2016


Col. 1:18 Christ is the head of the church, which is his body. He is the first of all who will rise from the dead, so he is first in everything.

Do not be confused about this. Christ is the head of the church. No one can take away from Jesus that which is rightfully His. No one has the authority to run the church except Jesus. No one has the authority to set himself up over others and act as if everything revolves around him. Christ is the head of the church---not the pastor, not the lay leaders, not the powerful, nor the rich. Christ does not need help on knowing how to run the church. Therefore, we must all submit to Him and let Him run things. How do we do that?

Jesus made it very clear that His house is a house of prayer. In all things, we unite our hearts together in prayer. We pray for one another continuously. We all need to pray. We pray that the Lord will keep each of our hearts pure and focused on Him. We pray for strength to resist the temptation to put ourselves as head of the church body. We pray that those who lead us will do so through prayer, submission to Christ, and love. We pray that the body of Christ will not be driven by jealousy or envy because we have different functions in the body. We pray together that we will never lose sight of the fact that Jesus is our head and each one of us is an essential part of His body.

Are you praying consistently over and with your church family? Are you praying for your spiritual leaders, as well as those who follow them? Nothing of eternal worth will be accomplished through the church until we are united as one on our knees before God's throne.

Wednesday, March 23, 2016


Col. 1:15-17 Christ is the visible image of the invisible God. He existed before God made anything at all and is supreme over all creation. Christ is the one through whom God created everything in heaven and earth. He made the things we can see and the things we can't see---kings, kingdoms, rulers, and authorities. Everything has been created through him and for him. He existed before everything else began, and he holds all creation together.

Do not minimize the greatness of Christ. Pause and think about these things. This same Jesus who saves us is God our ruler and creator of all things. He is God and beside Him there is no equal. He has absolute authority over all things we see and don't see. He holds everything together, both great and small, and if He were to remove His hand from His creation, nothing would remain in place or in order.

Have you ever stopped to consider how interdependent creation is? Everything God has created has a purpose and place. Every detail of God's creation exists for the whole. We may not know why every detailed part of creation is necessary, but God does and in His wisdom He put it in its place to fulfill its purpose.

Jesus is the embodiment of God in the flesh so that we can better understand Him, His great love, and our purpose and place in created life. Jesus has made God known to us. He is the majestic glory of God. He has all power and authority over creation. Don't minimize for one moment the greatness of Christ and take Him for granted. He is the King of kings and Lord of lords. He is absolute in His power and authority over all things. He alone has the right to be worshiped and served. Every knee will bow before Him and proclaim Him Lord.

Our worship of Christ today is our preparation for worship throughout eternity. The more we worship Him now, the better prepared we will be for eternity.

Tuesday, March 22, 2016


Col. 1:9 So we have continued praying for you ever since we first heard about you. We ask God to give you a complete understanding of what he wants to do in your lives, and we ask him to make you wise with spiritual wisdom.

There are several important things we need to focus on in this verse. First, Paul told the church that he (and his companions) continued to pray for the church. It wasn't a one time deal, or even a short time deal. The church at Colosse was on Paul's heart and he kept praying for her. I suspect that things would be quite different in most of our churches and lives if we were to not give up praying for one another.

Paul asked the Lord to give the church a complete understanding of what God wanted to do in their lives. So many of us are simply confused about what the Lord wants to do in and through our lives. We need to work on understanding the work of God in our lives. We need to stay out of the Lord's way and let Him work in us. We need to be able to see measureable changes in our lives. We need to understand that the Lord is with us; He is always at work in us to make us holy servants.

Paul also asked the Lord to make the church wise with spiritual wisdom. He wanted them to be able to rightly apply God's Word to their lives. He wanted them to think and act Biblically. He wanted them to live by do what was right before God and man.

We ought to pray this prayer for ourselves and for those we fellowship with. I believe that the church is spiritually deficient when it comes to asking the Lord to help us become who we ought to be in Christ. We won't get much better on our own; we need the Lord's help and prayer is the key.

Monday, March 21, 2016


Phil. 4:18-19 At the moment I have all I need---more than I need! I am generously supplied with the gifts you sent me with Epaphroditus. They are a sweet-smelling aroma to God and pleases him. And this same God who takes care of me will supply all your needs from his glorious riches, which have been given to us in Christ Jesus. Now glory be to God our Father forever and ever. Amen.

Gifts given in love are a sweet-smelling aroma to God and He is pleased with them. Gifts can be anything we have that another person doesn't. Whenever we use what we have to bless others, it is a gift. Gifts are given to please others. Worthwhile gifts come from the heart and requires thought and effort on our part. You can usually tell when a gift is given insincerely.

When gifts are given, they should be received with thanksgiving. There is nothing more cruel to the giver of gifts than to have his gifts scorned or rejected. We must learn how to accept gifts with thankful hearts.

God blesses those who give cheerfully out of hearts of love. He will take care of all of our needs from the abundance and richness of His resources that are made available to us in Christ Jesus our Lord. God will never let a giver who pleases Him go without what he needs in life. Never.

Gifts are never given to be hoarded. Use what you need and pass it on so others can be blessed too. Gifts are given so that we might serve the Lord with them. He blesses those who bless others with their gifts. When we bless others with our gifts, we are investing in eternal life, both ours and theirs.

Whatever gifts you have been given, use them wisely and lovingly for the glory and honor of our Lord.

Sunday, March 20, 2016


Phil. 4:13 For I can do everything with the help of Christ who gives me the strength I need.

There is nothing you can’t do if Christ is your helper. He gives us adequate strength for every task He gives us to do.

A couple of things we need to be reminded of today. The Lord will never give us a task to do that is outside of His will. He will never direct us in a way that is contrary to His nature. He will not give us a task that will glorify ourselves and not Him. He will not direct us to do things that will oppose His Word in any way. He will not help us to do things we devise to do. He will not help us to fulfill our selfish plans.

The Lord expects us to discern wisely what it is we are to do. If we act contrary to Him, don’t expect His help or strength. Anything we do that honors and glorifies Him will be blessed by Him. He enables us to serve Him well. He helps us to accomplish whatever we set out to do to serve Him and not ourselves.

Satan wants us to believe that we are not up to the task, that we simply are unable to do what our hearts are set on doing for Christ. It is a lie straight from hell. Jesus is more than able to help us to do what we desire to do for Him and He gives us the strength to do it, without fail.

Set your mind firmly on this wonderful truth. You can do what the Lord gives you to do. Do not be afraid to step out in faith. He will not let you fail. Do not let naysayers persuade you. Do not let the size of the task concern you. Do not hinder the work Christ wants to do through you by holding back. Step out boldly and follow the leading of the Lord. You can do anything through Christ who gives you the strength to do it.

If you don’t know what it is the Lord wants you to do and He doesn’t reveal it to you clearly through prayer or His Word, then boldly step out and do what you desire to do. If He is your Lord, He will not let you stray from His will. He will bless whatever it is you do for Him as long as He is your Lord. He honors those who honor Him, no matter what it is they do in life.

Saturday, March 19, 2016


Phil. 4:11-13 ...Not that I was ever in need, for I have learned how to get along happily whether I have much or little. I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little. For I can do everything with the help of Christ who gives me the strength I need.

The world tells us we need more than what we do. It tells us that we need what we want, when in reality we don't. The world exploits our wants for its own selfish purposes.

The Lord helps us to know the difference between what we want and what we need if we listen to Him. He does not withhold from us what we need, but He does withhold from us what we don't need. One of the most important and valuable lessons of faith that we can learn is how to be content with what the Lord provides for us. We must learn that quantity of blessings is not the key to joyfulness of salvation. We can be just as content and joyful in Christ if we lived on the streets as we could if we lived in mansions.

The key to victorious faith is knowing that we can do absolutely anything the Lord gives us to do when we let Him live in us and work through us. The Lord never asks us to do anything that can't be done with His help. He never asks us to do anything that is contrary to His character or will. He guarantees to take care of our every need when we live submissively before him.

Let our prayer always be to live happily where we are at the moment we are in regardless of our life's circumstances. The Lord is with us where we are at and will never leave or forsake us. He will never overlook any need we have and He will always enable us to do everything He calls upon us to do.

Friday, March 18, 2016


Phil. 4:9 Keep putting into practice all you learned from me and heard from me and saw me doing, and the God of peace will be with you.

Coming to faith is not a one shot deal. It begins at Calvary, but does not end there. Faith is an ongoing process; it's a way of life. For many, faith ends at Calvary. The idea is that once we put our faith in Christ, we are home free. We accept Jesus as our Savior and then get on with the rest of our lives. We get the idea that it doesn't matter how we live because we are now covered by grace. We are careless about sin and think that it's okay because we said some words at the foot of the cross.

The clear admonition of Scripture is that we must continue to put into practice our faith in Christ. It is more than words; it is a life we live. We must keep putting into practice the things we learn about. We can't let the teachings of the Word go in one ear and out the other. We learn from the Word so we can live the Word. The key to successful living in Christ is to learn from Him and apply what we learn to life. When we do this, the God of peace will be with us. God gives us peaceful and contented hearts when we live out His Word by faith.

Are you learning and living the Word of God? There is no end to what we can and need to learn from God. Study to show yourself approved by God, a child whom He never needs to be ashamed of.

Thursday, March 17, 2016


Phil. 4:8 And now, dear brothers and sisters, let me say one more thing as I close this letter; Fix your thoughts on what is true and honorable and right. Think about things that are pure and lovely and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.

Most of us are familiar with this verse of Scripture. We quote it to each other and agree that it is true. Yet, so many of us don’t put it into practice. We let our thoughts be occupied by so many other things. We relegate our spiritual thoughts to set times and places in our lives. We wait until it is time to focus on spiritual things before we seriously consider them. Is it any wonder that so many of us struggle to live godly lives?

We should always be controlled by thoughts that build us up. We should be dwelling on those things that help us to grow in faith. We should be blocking out those thoughts that hinder us from growing. We should consistently be exposed to helpful things. We should give careful thought to helpful insights and learn from them how to better live out our faith. We should not take lightly or dismiss those things the Lord shows us that will help us. Thinking about edifying things should be a normal part of our living.

There is so much to learn about ourselves, faith and the Lord. We need to be observant and take note of God’s revelations throughout our daily lives. He speaks to us in a wide variety of ways. Wise is he who notices those things and learns from them.

If you are a slow learner and find that you are not growing in faith as you should, ask the Lord to open up your eyes that you might see, your ears that you might hear and your mind that you might think about the things He wants to teach you today and every day of your life.

Wednesday, March 16, 2016


Phil. 4:6-7 Don’t worry about anything, instead, pray about everything; Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. If you do this, you will experience God’s peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.

The key to peace with God is simple: don’t worry about anything, instead pray about everything. Simple, but not very easy to do. Have you gotten to the point yet where you never worry? Let’s be honest; worrying is our natural response when we face the unknown with no control of the outcome. We have to really work hard to get to the point where we are able to totally trust in the Lord and not worry. Being connected to the Lord consistently through prayer helps us to trust Him unconditionally. The more time that we spend with Him, the better we get to know Him. And the better we get to know the Lord, the more likely it is that we will not worry about things but simply trust Him.

There is no getting around this truth. Peace with God comes from humbly waiting on God. We take all of our needs to Him. All means all. Whatever your need may be, God is able to meet it. No matter how big or small of a matter it may be, tell God about it and let Him take care of it.

When you pray, do it with thanksgiving. Thank the Lord for all He has already done in your life. The more conscious you are of God’s faithfulness in the past, the more apt you will be to trust Him today and in your tomorrows. Thank Him for your present and thank Him for your future. God is with you always, so give Him thanks.

The peace that comes from trusting God with all your needs is something that cannot be adequately expressed in words. It has to be experienced to be understood. It is a peace that can only be known by those who trust in God.

When God’s peace captivates the soul, it protects our hearts and minds as we walk with the Lord. We become so enamored by God that we do not chase after those things which lead us astray and rob us of peace and joy. When we are Christ-filled and centered we have peace that anchors the soul in the midst of the worst storms of life. It is a peace that the world cannot take away.

Tuesday, March 15, 2016


Phil. 4:5 Let everyone see that you are considerate in all you do. Remember the Lord is coming soon.

Are you a considerate person? Another word for considerate is kindness. It is being aware of how others feel and acting accordingly. It is treating others with respect. It is being willing to sacrifice for others. It is the willingness to alter your own agenda for the sake of others. A considerate person cares about others.

Is it even possible to live in Christ and not be a considerate person? I don't think it can be done. The very nature of Christ is to reach out and touch others. He is always seeking to involve himself in the lives of others and help them simply because He loves them. Jesus is working hard to lift people up and not tear them down. Jesus is compelled by love to do all He can to save us. The more we let Christ become our Lord, the more like Him we become. God's goal is not to save us and then move on to the next person. His goal is to save us and then become our Lord. We are to grow into maturity of faith and become like Jesus, and that means that we will become considerate in all we do.

We dare not mess around and wait before we let Jesus be Lord of our lives. He is coming back soon and then it will be too late. Our opportunity to become like Jesus and do good is now. Let Jesus be seen in you. Show the world that you are a child of God by the way you treat others while there is still time to do it.

Show them the Savior and perhaps by your example some will be saved before Jesus comes.

Monday, March 14, 2016


Phil. 4:4 Always be full of joy in the Lord. I say it again---rejoice!

Always be full of joy in the Lord. Always? Is it possible to always be full of joy in the Lord? It must be, otherwise why would the Word tell us to do it? Perhaps then we need to consider what it means to have joy in the Lord. Maybe our understanding is messed up. Joy and happiness are not the same thing. Joy is much deeper than happiness. Happiness is more of a momentary feeling of elation. It depends on what is happening at the moment. It is a sense of gladness that we are in the moment.

Joy has more to do with an abiding contentment. It is the sense that all is well with us regardless of the moment. It has more to do with wellness of life. Joy is gladness that we are in life moments, regardless of whether the moment is good or bad. Joy is the knowledge that all is well because God is in control of life and us in it. It is the resting in God's presence. It is keeping our eyes fixed on Jesus and not our momentary circumstances. It is knowing it is well with my soul.

It is possible to always be full of joy in the Lord. We can be so connected to Him that we are not swayed by life's circumstances. We can abide in Him and know we can trust Him to be with us and see us through anything we encounter. We can live without having to struggle to maintain control of what is going on in or around us. We can live content to accept the ebbs and flows of life without worrying about them. We can enjoy life because we know the Lord is with us in it. I would call it joyful living.

Joy can only be a reality when we live in close fellowship with the Lord. The more we abide in His presence, the more joy will fill our souls. Jesus is our song to sing. Let us always rejoice in Him.

Sunday, March 13, 2016


Phil. 3:17 Dear brothers and sisters, pattern your lives after mine, and learn from those who follow our example.

Can you honestly encourage others to pattern their lives after yours? Are you confident enough in the righteousness of your heart that you would recommend to people you love and know that they become like you?

I believe that every believer in Christ should be able to encourage others to follow in their footsteps. I believe that we should be pursuing the things of God in such a way that we are examples of how it is done. I believe that our lives in public, as well as in private, should be worthy of being imitated. We should have no secrets to hide from the public eye. We should be consistently faithful to the Lord and always striving to please Him. Our conduct and conversation should back up what we proclaim.

We teach others by the way we live about faith, good or bad. Those who observe us will draw conclusions about faith based on what they see and hear. Our lives will either inspire others to take seriously faith or to consider it not worth doing. Some souls will make eternal decisions for Christ based on how we live. It’s a sobering thought that we must take seriously. We never know who is watching us.

Learn from those who are living godly lives and teach others by your godly living.

Saturday, March 12, 2016


Phil. 3:15-16 I hope all of you who are mature Christians will agree on these things. If you disagree on some point, I believe God will make it plain to you. But we must be sure to obey the truth we have learned already.

Paul's emphasis has been on our setting our hearts and minds on Christ who is before us and letting go and forgetting all those things which are behind us. Our priority as Christians is living in Christ alone. He should consume us to the point where we no longer have the time or desire to live in the past. We must learn that the more time we spend in the past takes away from the time we spend in Christ in the present . Living in the past drains us and robs us of the joy of our salvation today and the anticipation of our completed salvation in the future.

We must strive to always live in the truth of God's Word as He reveals it to us. We shouldn't get caught up in what we don't know and understand. We just must be sure to obey that which we do know already. And what we do know is that Jesus has washed away our past sins from His memory. He has shown us how we can overcome our sinfulness today. And, He is in heaven waiting to embrace us after we have run the good race and fought the good fight of faith.

These basic truths of the faith bind us together. Let us not let ourselves become distracted by other things. Let us agree to move forward together for the glory of Christ and not our own. If we do these things, we will not get bogged down by our sinful behavior and all that distracts us. We will move forward as one for the glory of Christ on earth. Together we will make a difference for Christ, divided we will make little impact.

God has made it very plain; our rallying point is at the foot of the cross. He unites us together in Christ. We must not forget that this is the central truth of the Gospel. Everything else is the fine print. We must always strive to obey the simple truth of the Gospel, Jesus is Savior and Lord of all.

Friday, March 11, 2016


Phil. 3:13-14 No, dear brothers and sisters, I am still not all I should be, but I am focusing all my energies on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead. I strain to reach the end of the race and receive the prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us up to heaven.

We need to be honest with ourselves. We need to admit that we are not yet all that we should be in Christ. No one has reached the point where he cannot be a better person in Christ. The Lord is never done with us. We will never be finished projects while on earth.

Instead of focusing on who we might already be in Christ, we should focus on becoming more like Christ. It doesn’t matter how far we have come; it only matters how far we are yet going. We slow up our progress when we dwell on our past growth. All of our energies need to be put into reaching our goal, which is to finish well the race of life in Christ. Our goal should always be to be more holy today than we were yesterday. We should always put our best efforts into being faithful and true to our calling in Christ. We will be rewarded for our faithfulness, not our past achievements.

The more we let go of our past, the less trouble we will have moving forward. Whatever was in your past needs to stay there. Christ forgives us for our past and it is wiped from the memory of God. We would be wise to do the same. We are not who we were; we are who we are in Christ. Let us keep our eyes focused on our future in Christ and do our very best to become all that we can be in Christ.

We should take an honest look at ourselves and identify those areas where we need to continue to grow. We all have them. Ask the Lord to help you work on them. You can grow and become a better child of faith if you will let the Lord help you.

It takes all the effort we can muster to stay true to Christ and grow in Him. Let us not slack off but work hard so that we will be ready when the Lord comes to call us home.

Thursday, March 10, 2016


Phil.. 3:12 I don’t mean to say that I have already achieved these things or that I have already reached perfection! But I keep working toward that day when I will be all that Christ Jesus saved me for and wants me to be.

Whenever Paul came down hard on holy living, he saw himself in light of his teachings. He was honest about his own struggles to live rightly before God. He knew what kind of a man he needed to be before God and understood that it is a process of growth. He knew that in order to be the person God wanted him to be he had to put much work into it. His goal was to become that person, no matter if it took him the rest of his life to get there.

We need to see ourselves in the same light. No one on earth will ever obtain perfection in their spiritual walk. We are made perfect in Christ in that He is our perfection, but for us to be able to claim that we no longer need to be worked on is just not going to happen. There is much work that the Lord needs to do in all of us. We cannot coast our way to holy living. We must constantly be at work striving to improve the quality of our faith walk.

The more work we do, the more we come to realize that our need for Christ is so much more than we already have of Him. There is a constant warfare with Satan going on within us. Satan is doing all that he can do to hinder our progress. He constantly is devising new ways of attacking our souls to derail us.

Let us keep striving for that day in which our salvation will be complete and we will be all that Christ saved us for and wants us to be.

Wednesday, March 9, 2016


Phil. 3:7-9 I once thought all these things were so very important, but now I consider them worthless because of what Christ has done. Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the priceless gain of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I may have Christ and become one with him. I no longer count on my own goodness or my ability to obey God's law, but I trust Christ to save me. For God's way of making us right with himself depends on faith.

Take a moment and think about those things in life that you value the most. What makes life worth the living for you? What do you work for? What in life do you deem to be important enough for you that you are willing to make whatever sacrifices you need to make in order to have it? Do you have a list in mind? It may be a very short list, or it could be a long one, but everyone has something in life they deem important enough to live for. When we lose sight of life's purpose, what is the point of living?

In our text today we are challenged to rethink our list. The Apostle Paul had climbed the ladder of success. He had achieved what his heart had longed for. He had the respect of his peers and was looked to for getting done what was deemed to be the most important task on earth, getting rid of the Christians. Paul was good at it. He was feared wherever he went. And then, he met Jesus. His encounter forever changed his life and all that he deemed worth living for. Paul quickly learned that everything was worthless when seen in the light of Jesus. It was all garbage---all the fame, fortune, respect of his peers, everything.

There is nothing in life worth more of our time, energy, or ambitions than Jesus. He alone is worth living for. In Jesus alone do we find hope and a reason to live. He alone fills the empty void of the heart. He alone saves us from sin's death grip. He alone is worth giving up our lives for.

If Jesus is not on the top of your list, your life is out of balance. You need to get your priorities straight today. What value is there in having everything you want in life if you don't have Jesus? He will not play second fiddle in your life. He either is your purpose for living or He isn't. You can't value anything else more than the Lord and still be in good standing with Him. He will not share His place in your heart with anyone or anything else.

Is Jesus more important to you than anything else in life? If not, you need to seriously get your priorities straight right now while you can.

Tuesday, March 8, 2016


Phil. 2:14-15 In everything you do, stay away from complaining and arguing, so that no one can speak a word of blame against you. You are to live clean, innocent lives as children of God in a dark world full of crooked and perverse people. Let your light shine brightly before them.

When I was young, I liked to argue with those who did not see things as I did. I just knew I was right and was convinced I could prove others wrong. In fact, I felt like I had to help them "see the light.". Fortunately, I grew up. I learned how futile and fruitless arguing was. I discovered that rarely does anyone win an argument. We dig our heels in and refuse to be persuaded by words. Rarely does anyone listen to what is being said or why it's being said. I learned that it is far more profitable for relationships if I'd stay away from arguments. In good relationships you agree to disagree agreeably and not let your differences in understanding interfere in your peace and rob you of your common good.

It does no one any good to be a complainer. No one likes to keep company with complainers. Constant complaining wears thin quickly. If you have an axe to grind, don't bore others with it. It is far better to go to the source of your problem and seek to resolve things personally. Complaining is never productive. It robs the complainer of the peace and joy of living.

It is far better to just keep your nose clean and stay away from complaining and arguing. It is far better to be known as a person of peace. Mind your own business. Strive to live a blameless life before God and let Him take care of that which is not yours to deal with. Don't waste your time and energy on those things you can't fix or control. Live a clean and innocent life so that the world can see Christ in and through you. People need to see and know Christ, not hear about what you think you know is wrong or true. Stay focused on Christ alone and you will make your world a much better place to be in.

Monday, March 7, 2016


Phil. 2:12-13 Dearest friends, you were always so careful to follow my instructions when I was with you. And now that I am away you must be even more careful to put into action God's saving work in your lives, obeying God with deep reverence and fear. For God is working in you, giving you the desire to obey him and the power to do what pleases him.

We should be striving to obey the Lord regardless if we are surrounded by a crowd of people or are all alone. We should not seek to obey the Lord only when we are noticed. Obeying the Lord is the natural response of those who are His children. Obedience is an act of love and respect. It is normal behavior for those who are saved. Obeying God is a joy and not a drudgery. It is the delight of our heart and not a pain in our neck. Obedience is nothing more than putting into action saving grace.

Obedience comes out of the heart with deep reverence and fear for God. We grasp the eternal meaning of our salvation and what the Lord has done to make it possible. We value His love that devised the plan, became the plan, and carried the plan through to completion. We worship Him out of our deep gratitude for saving us and all that means for us.

We fear Him who holds the keys to life and death. We grasp the fact that He is holy and will not tolerate sin in His presence. Our fear of Him compels us to live holy lives before Him. We understand the importance of saying no to sin and striving with determination to stay strong in Him so that we can say no.

Dear child of God, He is at work in you to help you! He knows that you can't live in Him without His help and so He is working to help increase your desire for Him and to give you all the power you can handle to get it done., so be careful how you live before Him.

Praise the Lord from whom all blessings flows upon and through us!

Sunday, March 6, 2016


Phil. 2:3-4 Don't be selfish; don't live to make a good impression on others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourself. Don't think only about your own affairs, but be interested in others, too, and what they are doing.

It is so hard to not look out for ourselves first. It is the natural thing for us to do. We are self-conscious and self-centered. There is nothing wrong with taking responsibility for our care and protecting ourselves from harm, but we so often let our need for well-being go to our heads. We tend to want to impress others because it draws attention to us. We like to be thought well of; it strokes our egos. Some of us like it so well that it becomes all we live for.

Instead of being so conscious of ourselves, we ought to think of others and their needs in life. If we are focused on others, we are less interested in ourselves. When we put the needs of others before our own, we are living humbly before God.

We will always need to take care of our personal needs, but we need to balance it with an involvement in the needs of others. Jesus exemplified it best when He refused to not go to the cross for us. He understood that it was His right as God to bypass the cross and go straight home to heaven, but He didn't do that because He knew we needed a Savior and the cross was the only way it was going to happen.

You may very well be the person someone needs to see them through some rough time in their life. You may be the one to give them hope and help. You can't save them, but you can perhaps be used by the Lord to rescue them. It will only happen if you get involved in others' lives and not just your own.

Who needs your loving care today?

Saturday, March 5, 2016


Phil. 2:1-2 Is there any encouragement from belonging to Christ? And comfort from his love? Any fellowship together in the Spirit? Are your hearts tender and sympathetic? Then make me truly happy by agreeing wholeheartedly with each other, loving one another, and working together with one heart and purpose.

Paul was very strong on Christian unity. He made it very clear that believers need to strive always to get along with each other. He did not let the church get by with proclaiming brotherly love and not showing it.

Our relationship with Christ should affect all of our relationships. If we are right with God, we will live righteously with each other. We don’t have to agree with each other on all things in order to live harmoniously with each other and to work together for God’s glory.

The Lord has but one agenda, to reach out to the world in love that souls may be saved and sanctified in Him. We who are His children should likewise have the same goal. If we have any other agenda, we are not living in the will of God for His church.

The love of God binds us together as one that we may be one in heart and purpose. Sin is the root cause of all dissensions and division in the church. It is imperative that as much as it is possible to do, that we set aside our differences and come together in love so that we can be an effective witness for Christ in the world. As long as each church fellowship has her own agenda, the cause of Christ suffers. We are not competitors; we are co-laborers with Christ in the world.

If you find yourself having a hard time working together with other believers in the harvest field, ask the Lord to change your heart towards them. Ask the Lord to give you a focus on the harvest field instead of your personal agenda.

Be an example for others to follow and be one with Christ in His efforts to reach the world with the Gospel message that as many souls as possible might be saved.

Friday, March 4, 2016


Phil. 1:27 But whatever happens to me, you must live in a manner worthy of the Good News about Christ, as citizens of heaven.

The Apostle Paul had a very deep concern for people. He knew the importance of living a life that reflected well Christ in the world. He strove to live it himself and then he strove to motivate others to live it. All of his writings pointed to a deeper, more godly life in Christ. Paul insisted that life in Christ was more than mere words we proclaim, it is a life that was similar to Christ's in purity and holiness. Paul was not ashamed to be counted amongst those who lived a godly life. He never apologized for his godliness, nor did he try to hide it. He valued it so highly that he took whatever others could dish out to him and counted it an honor to do so for the sake of Christ.

Are you living in a manner worthy of the life of Christ in you? Are you living like a citizen of heaven, earth, or maybe something in-between? Only those who live like citizens of heaven will qualify for heaven. Any life that brings shame to Christ is not worthy to be called by His name. There is no greater honor or privilege on earth than to live a godly life. So, why is it that so many of us seemingly aren't too concerned how well we live godly lives? I don't think God is too amused by how many of us live.

Let us strive to live each day in a manner worthy of Christ in us. Let us strive to raise the bar of holiness in us. Let us endeavor to never let the Lord be ashamed to call us His own.

Thursday, March 3, 2016


Phil. 1:20 For I live in eager expectation and hope that I will never do anything that causes me shame, but that I will always be bold for Christ, as I have been in the past, and that my life will always honor Christ, whether I live or I die.

I don’t believe most of us can make a statement like this. Most of us do not expect to never do anything that would cause us to be ashamed. We are not confident enough in our righteousness to believe that we could ever do it. From experience we know that we mess up, that we sin. We seldom get to the point where we actually believe that we will be strong enough to not sin. Yet, Paul believed it was possible and he was not afraid to go out on a limb and proclaim it.

Paul expected to always be a bold witness for Christ. He based his hope on the fact that it was true of him in the past and he saw no reason why it would change. His passion for Christ was so strong that he simply couldn’t hold it in. He had to be a witness for Him. We should strive to be like Paul. Our love for Christ should compel us to be bold witnesses for Him. If we are not witnesses for Him, then perhaps we better re-evaluate our standing before God. We are bold witnesses for those things which excite us.

Paul’s passion was to always honor Christ, whether in life or death. It should be the passion of every believer’s heart. Do you honor Christ in your living? If you do, you certainly will honor Him in your death. Our expectation should always be that we would live honorable lives before God in Christ. Let us leave no doubt as to whom we are living for by the way we live our lives. In all things, honor the Lord in word and deed.

Wednesday, March 2, 2016


Phil. 1:11 May you always be filled with the fruit of your salvation--those good things that are produced in your life by Jesus Christ--for this will bring much glory and praise to God.

What a great way to pray for one another! We all should be filled with the fruit of our salvation. We should all be growing and becoming like Christ in His righteousness and holiness. We should be growing in our ability to love others with godly love. We should be more gracious and forgiving towards others. Goodness should characterize our lives, all for the glory and praise of God.

The good things that are produced in us when Jesus is our Lord are those things that flow from the heart and character of God. It is good when we get rid of our sinful characteristics and put on godly characteristics. Instead of letting ourselves be dragged down by sin, we let Christ lift us up by His righteousness. We treat others with love, mercy and grace. We are quick to forgive and slow to harbor bitter or ill feelings towards others. We act in ways that will bring Christ glory and honor. We do our best to honor the Lord in what we do and how we do it.

Wouldn't it be wonderful if all of us would pray for each other in this way and mean it? It would resolve a lot of dissension in the church. We need to pray this prayer over one another. There is no reason for us to not want each other to be more like Christ in what we do and say. If you care about those whom the Lord cares about, you will join me in praying this prayer over the body of Christ in general and the church family you are a part of.

Tuesday, March 1, 2016


Phil. 1:3-4 Every time I think of you, I give thanks to my God. I always pray for you, and I make my requests with a heart full of joy.

When was the last time you thought of someone and gave thanks for them, especially believers? Do you think of fellow believers with a grateful heart or a critical spirit? We may not be in agreement with the thinking of other believers or even how they are living out their faith, but we ought to thank the Lord for them. Everyone who is serving the Lord in the world is doing good for the glory of Christ. Thank the Lord for what good they are able to do. And if they are not serving out of loyalty to Christ, thank Him for them anyways because the Word of God that goes forth from them does not return to God empty handed.

When was the last time you actually prayed for other believers beside those who you know or like? We should pray for each other that we will live out faith in an honorable way. We should be praying that all of us will have a positive impact on the world for Christ. We should be praying for each other that we might grow into greater faith and holiness of heart.

The wonder of praying for each other is that the more we pray for each other the more we grow to love each other in the Lord. And, the more we love each other, the more joy fills our hearts as we pray. It’s a win-win situation.

Whenever the Lord brings to your mind someone to pray for, pray with thanksgiving for them and what they are doing for the Lord. Let the Lord fill your heart with joy as you remember those for whom Jesus died and are now serving Him.