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FOLLOWING IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF FAITH, Thu, 4/18/2013

Thursday, April 18, 2013

FOLLOWING IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF FAITH, Thu, 4/18/2013

David: A Man, After God’s Own Heart

1 Samuel 18:5-16
IN THE PRESENCE OF TRUE GREATNESS, Lesson 10b

v. 10-13 THE PRIORITIES OF DAVID’S LIFE

Another example of the greatness of David’s young life is the priorities he exhibited. These were not easy days for young David. He has been uprooted from his home. He has found instant fame from killing Goliath. And, he has found a bitter enemy in the person of King Saul, (v. 9). Still David remains faithful in his priorities. He carried on with his assignments in spite of all the difficulties he faced. Notice how David demonstrated faithfulness to the priorities of his life.

v. 10 David Was Surrendered – David knew the king was against him, still David walked into that throne room, picked up that harp and played his music. He had a job to do, and he did it faithfully.

v. 11 David Was Steadfast – In his hatred, Saul attempted to kill David. But, notice the phrase, “And David avoided out of his presence twice.” Saul tried to kill David and David ran away. I don’t know about you, but that would have probably finished me up. I would have turned in my resignation and headed back to the sheep fold. But not David! He was steadfast. Even though Saul tried to kill him, David returned to his post and continued doing the job he had been assigned to do.

v. 13 David Was Submissive – Even after Saul attempted to take his life, David kept on serving the evil king. David took his new assignment and carried to out to the best of his ability.

In these three verses, David sets a good example for you and for me. Often the difference between the average Christian and the great Christian comes down to a simple matter of priorities.

You see, we do the things that are important to us. Those things you attach value to determine the priorities of your life. Everything in your life is touched by this principle. For instance, your church attendance will be determined by what priority it holds in your life. The same is true of prayer, Bible study, witnessing, etc. You do what you think is important.

David’s standard of living is one from which we could all take a lesson. At some point, David had determined to be faithful in spite of injury; in spite of trouble; in spite of difficulty. He had made up his mind that he was going to be surrendered, steadfast and submissive to the king, regardless of what took place in his life.
This is how we should all be today. In fact, this is God’s will for each of His children, (1 Cor. 15:58; Rom. 12:1-2). But, aren’t we guilty of allowing everything in the world hinder our walk with and faithfulness to the things of God? We need to make up our minds that He will be the first priority of our lives, (Matt 6:33). If he is first, then we will have no trouble serving Him like He deserves to be served! If He isn’t, we will have trouble in this area, which will lead to trouble in all areas of our lives.

TODAY’S VERSE!
Isaiah 33:22 (New King James Version (NKJV)

22 For the Lord is our Judge,
The Lord is our Lawgiver,
The Lord is our King;
He will save us;

TODAY’S HYMN!
“Seek Ye First” Adapted By: Karen Lafferty (1972)

Seek Ye first the kingdom of God, And His righteousness ,And all these things, shall be added onto you. Alleu, Alleuia.

Man shall not live by bread alone ,But by every word ,That proceeds from the mouth of God, Alleu, Alleuia.

Ask and it shall be given unto you, Seek and ye shall find. Knock and the door shall be opened onto you. Alleu, Alleuia.

Seek ye first the kingdom of God, And His righteousness, And all these things, shall be added onto you. Alleu, Alleuia


TODAY’S PRAYER!
Almighty Father, Awesome and Wonderful God! Help us to be separated from the world and yet still be in it in an effective way to do Your will to Your glory. Show us how to live in this world and still be Your light extended without being drawn into and influenced by all the darkness and dangers in it. Strengthen us to reject all peer pressure to be anything other than who You want us to be. Expose to us where we have given in to practices that are contrary to Your will. Shut off and shut down anything that pollutes our hearts, minds and souls. Open our eyes to things we have become accustomed to that ought not to be. Draw us ever closer to Jesus so we may follow His example. It is in His glorious name that we pray and ask these things. Amen!

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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ANHELIC 4/18/2013 10:52PM

    Thank you Vic for a great lesson, hymn and prayer. It would be great if we could all be steadfast like David, but unfortunately, at times, we run in another direction when trials come our way. God, I pray that you will help me become more steadfast and not weaken our faith. Amen. Blessings to you vic for your teachings.

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CANDOIT54 4/18/2013 7:15PM

    Thank you

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NELLIEH1 4/18/2013 1:48PM

    Our whole culture continues to try to entice us to "jump ship" and get comfortable doing our own thing instead of the difficult decision to remain in the place/circumstances /situation in which GOD has placed us. Yes, we choose, but His plan and ways are what undergird us. Like everyone else, I want to be about what I want to do and not have to walk through the hard, painful things that are part of every relationship and job. Today I choose once again to say "Yes, LORD!" and walk in what He has prepared for me today (Ephesians 2:10). Thanks You, Jesus!

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A_BIT_AT_A_TIME 4/18/2013 12:41PM

    Timely message for me as I push aside some things that have been distracting me. Thank you for posting these words of encouragement each day.

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JADOMB 4/18/2013 12:29PM

    As I get older and wiser I am much clearer on what is most important and how to prioritize. I still fail sometimes, but know I have a loving and forgiving Father that continues to help me find my way. Blessed is our Lord.

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PINK-SOLDIER 4/18/2013 11:17AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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TONYVAND1 4/18/2013 11:04AM

  We do need to seek first the things of God and then all things will be added to us.

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LOSTLIME 4/18/2013 10:59AM

    Wonderful prayer!

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FORMERFATGUY777 4/18/2013 9:47AM

    I love the devotion. I'm preaching on David this Sunday. Psalms 32. The blessing is we have a glimpse of his heart and what he was going through after he fell away from God. And we also see the reaction of a heart that is forgiven and knows very well they don't deserve to be. I enjoyed this

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SANDRALEET 4/18/2013 9:05AM

    He did his best in his time of trials So do we

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LOOKINGUP2012 4/18/2013 8:58AM

    Beautiful lesson on surrender to God's will for our lives. emoticon emoticon

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RSSSLHB 4/18/2013 8:32AM

    emoticon prayer Vic emoticon

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JOANIE69 4/18/2013 8:24AM

    emoticon What a beautiful prayer, Vic. emoticon
This part of today's lesson held special meaning to me: "I would have turned in my resignation and headed back to the sheep fold. But not David! He was steadfast." So often we feel that we just want to fade into the woodwork when things go wrong for us, as we serve the LORD and stand up for the whole Gospel message in a time when the pastors of large churches are clearly avoiding the preaching of the atonement through the blood of the Lamb as our only means of standing before GOD unafraid at His judgment seat. Glory to GOD for His provision, and may we like David remain steadfast in times of peril...for our God wins! emoticon

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AZMOMXTWO 4/18/2013 8:05AM

  awesome thank you

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FOLLOWING IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF FAITH, Wed, 4/17/2013

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

FOLLOWING IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF FAITH, Wed, 4/17/2013

David: A Man, After God’s Own Heart

1 Samuel 18:5-16
IN THE PRESENCE OF TRUE GREATNESS, Lesson 10a

How do you measure greatness? Is true greatness seen in how much money a person has? Can it be determined by the car they drive, the size of the house they live is, or in the status that have achieved in life? Is true greatness recognizable by one’s achievements in life? For instance, if an actor wins an Oscar, has he or she achieved greatness? If an athlete topples longstanding records, have they achieved greatness?

If someone is able to do what no one else has ever done before, have they achieved true greatness? Some would say “Yes!” But, I have the sneaking suspicion that God would say “No!” I think God would say, “True greatness is not measured by what you achieve in life, but how you live your life.” ( Job 1:8 – God declared Job’s greatness).

We can see this principle fleshed out in the life of David. In this passage, David is just a young lad. He is a kid fresh from his first battle; but he has already achieved what so few people ever achieve in this life: David has achieved true greatness. I would like to take this text and share with you a few observations from the life of David. These observations reveal why I say that David has achieved true greatness; and they tell us how we can achieve it too. I would like to take this passage and preach on the subject: “In The Presence Of True Greatness”

v. 5, 14, 30 THE PRESENTATION OF DAVID’S LIFE

Three times in this chapter we are told that “David behaved himself wisely.” This phrase speaks of someone “walking properly.” It refers “to a person who knows how to carry themselves.” It is speaks of more than mere manners. It speaks of a person who watches what they say, what they do, and how they act; because they know they are being watched. It has the idea of walking “accurately and carefully,” as if one were navigating a minefield. It is the kind of walk we are all called upon to exhibit, (Eph. 5:15). There are three areas were this accurate, careful walk of David was on display.

v. 5 He Behaved Himself Well In Spite Of Life’s Promotions – After David defeated Goliath, he continued to prove himself to be a faithful, loyal subject day by day. David did not allow his victory over the Philistine to go to his head. David knew he was climbing to the top, but he was willing to take the climb one step at a time.

There is always a danger when we see some measure of success in our walk with the Lord. When God allows us to see a victory or two, we need to beware of the snare of pride. It has a way of telling us that we are greater than we actually are. Thank God for the victories He gives, but be careful that they do not go to your head, (Pro. 16:18; 1 Cor. 10:12).

v. 14 He Behaved Himself Well In Spite Of Life’s Problems – Even when Saul tried to kill him, David still carried himself the right way. David could have become bitter, or he could have been overcome by a desire for revenge. Instead, David continued to carry himself well and set a good example.

Often, it’s the problems of life that throw us off course. Some unexpected calamity will blindside us and we will be down and out before we know it. A sign of true greatness in one’s faith is the ability to continue to walk the right way in the right path, even when things are not going well in your life, like Paul in (Phil. 4:11-13; and Job – Job 1:20-21).

v. 30 He Behaved Himself Well In Spite Of Life’s Possibilities – David has, through the providence of God, become far more popular than King Saul. David has married into Saul’s family. David has been blessed and he has prospered greatly in Israel. He is in a position to attempt an overthrow of Saul’s kingdom. After all, he is the king! But, instead of trying to elevate himself; David is content to wait on the Lord. David continues to carry himself well in spite of the opportunity to promote himself.

Be very careful when it seems that you are on the way up. There is a tendency for us to blow our own horn. But, if we are wise, and if we are walking properly; we will leave the horn tooting to the Lord. He knows where we are and He knows how to elevate us in His time. Our duty is to live for Him and make a proper presentation of our lives before others for His glory. After all, the Bible says, “charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own,” (1 Cor. 13:4-5.)

David may have been a young man, but he set the kind of example that we all need to follow. He lived a wise and balanced life for the glory of God. He lived a life that honored God and a life that God could honor. I don’t know about you, but I am interested in living that kind of life also.

TODAY’S VERSE!
Luke 6:44 (New King James Version (NKJV)

44 For every tree is known by its own fruit. For men do not gather figs from thorns, nor do they gather grapes from a bramble bush.

TODAY’S HYMN!
“Each Step I Take” By: W. Elmo Mercer (1953)

Each step I take my Saviour goes before me,
And with His loving hand He leads the way,
And with each breath I whisper "I adore Thee;"
Oh, what joy to walk with Him each day.

Refrain:
Each step I take I know that He will guide me;
To higher ground He ever leads me on.
Until some day the last step will be taken.
Each step I take just leads me closer home.

At times I feel my faith begin to waver,
When up ahead I see a chasm wide.
It's then I turn and look up to my Saviour,
I am strong when He is by my side.
Refrain:

I trust in God, no matter come what may,
For life eternal in His hand,
He holds the key that opens up the way,
That will lead me to the promised land.
Refrain:

TODAY’S PRAYER!
Heavenly Father, Redeeming God! Be with us as we study from Your word. Help us to understand what we read and study. Give us the strength to make wise decisions as we try to do what we have learned from the scripture. Thank You for giving us Your armor in the size and style that fits us so we can enter the service of Your kingdom in the strength of our Lord, Jesus Christ. Enable us to walk upright, in the right way and in the right path to Your glory. These things we pray in the glorious name of Jesus. Amen!

BE SURE TO READ MY DAILY “DID YOU KNOW” POST!
SHARE THIS LESSON WITH FRIENDS AND INVITE THEM TO JOIN THE TEAM!



  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LOOKINGUP2012 4/18/2013 8:12AM

    Great lesson.

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ANHELIC 4/17/2013 11:41PM

    Thank you Vic for a great lesson, hymn and prayer. I pray that I could have a heart like David and be a good example of how God's children act. I have slipped and fallen and I know God supports me even at those times and forgives me. Thank you Vic for the goodie and note.

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JADOMB 4/17/2013 8:55PM

    Human nature is tough for all of us keep under control. But the more one understands and loves our Lord Jesus, the more they allow him to keep them strong and successful. That doesn't mean they will come into money, but money is a very weak indicator of success anyway. What legacy are YOU going to leave behind when you die? Are you going to allow God to help you do great things? Lean on him and he will never fail you.

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TONYVAND1 4/17/2013 5:48PM

  We need to be studying the Word with great dillegence

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SWEETMAGNOLIA2 4/17/2013 5:18PM

    Thanks so much for the spark goodie with a line from this devotional. Just what I needed to hear today. God is so good!

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JUDITH316 4/17/2013 2:08PM

    Great blog, thanks Vic for sharing, God's Blessings on your day..

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IAM_HIS 4/17/2013 12:18PM

    This is so line with what I was thinking about this AM when praying. How I need to change my ways with my strong-willed teenage children. I have been asking God to help me be a better mother and show me what I need to change. I feel your blog helped me with my answer.

God bless you my friend for this blog.

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JOANIE69 4/17/2013 11:08AM

    emoticon Vic. Yes, I too want to be a person who brings honor to God by my life. Like David, I have stumbled and fallen, BUT he was a man whose heart was tuned in to God's heart, so in spite of his shortcomings and sin, common to all men (women), he did lead the life of a courageous leader who yet brought to God the glory, by his strong faith and trust in the Lord when his life and the lives of many were in David's hands. Through David God showed how great is His ability and desire to deliver us. What a glorious God we serve.

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CANDOIT54 4/17/2013 10:54AM

    Thank you for sharing. God Bless you

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LOSTLIME 4/17/2013 10:37AM

    thank you for sharing. Hope you have a great day!

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RSSSLHB 4/17/2013 9:40AM

    emoticon for posting emoticon

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NELLIEH1 4/17/2013 8:02AM

    David is a good example for us because he walked faithfully and uprightly in what GOD had promised him concerning the kingship, but he failed and sinned in his pride and stubbornness and lust to grab what he wanted. However, he repented and that's key. We do walk well as believers and also fail. But the gift of GOD is redemption and forgiveness in Christ Jesus our Lord! Thank you again , Vic, for bringing out these important truths. So often we can read the scripture GOD would have us absorb lightly, skimming over some of the depths.

Comment edited on: 4/17/2013 8:03:50 AM

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AZMOMXTWO 4/17/2013 7:39AM

  thank you

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SANDRALEET 4/17/2013 6:52AM

    Sad part is he got himself in trouble with God later part and his life changed to a hard life just like many of us We suffer the consequence of our sin .Put till the end kept his faith in God

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FOLLOWING IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF FAITH, Tue, 4/16/2013

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

FOLLOWING IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF FAITH, Tue, 4/16/2013

David: A Man, After God’s Own Heart

1 Samuel 18:1-4
THE PRINCE AND THE PAUPER, Lesson 9c

JONATHAN’S LOVE WAS AN UNCONDITIONAL LOVE

Verse 3 tells us that Jonathan “loved him as his own soul.” Along the way, there were hurdles that developed which could have derailed their relationship. For instance, Saul hated David and repeatedly tried to kill him, (1 Sam. 18:25; 19:1, 8-11), and many other places. Jonathan’s devotion to David even caused a rift to develop between him and his father, as he repeatedly took David’s side against the king, (1 Sam. 19:2, 4-7; 1 Sam. 20:24-34). Things even became so heated between Jonathan and Saul that Saul actually tried to kill his own son. By the way, it’s a good thing Saul was a bad shot with that javelin!

In spite of the problems and in spite of everything that happened, Jonathan loved David to the end. His love was totally unconditional!

Even when it wasn’t easy for this friendship between Jonathan and David to exist, it did. It existed and flourished because Jonathan refused to allow anything to sever the bond he has with David. When his soul was “knit” to the souls of David, it was bound to him for life. The Bible also says that they made a “covenant” together, (1 Sam. 18:3). A covenant was more than a mere promise. It was life and death guarantee. They bound themselves together for life with an oath. They swore to be friends to the end; and they both honored the covenant. When Jonathan was killed in battle, David spoke of his death and of their friendship, (2 Sam. 1:17-27). As David speaks it is clear to see that he speaks of a friendship that was unfailing and unceasing.

Again, this is a picture of the kind of love with which God loves us. His love for us is not affected by our behavior. It is not affected by His feelings. It is unaffected by our responses to Him. His love is not affected by anything at all.

His love is never ending and it is totally unconditional. In fact, there is nothing that you can do that will make the Lord stop loving you! Nothing, and I mean nothing, can make Him stop loving His children, (Rom. 8:38-39).

You see, nothing we did made the Lord start loving us and nothing we can do will ever make His stop loving us. Love is a choice that God, in His sovereignty makes. It is a choice that He is willing to stand by forever. Thank God for unconditional love!

Greg Louganis recorded an unprecedented double/double in Olympic diving when he won gold medals in the men's 3-meter springboard and platform competition in both the 1984 and 1988 Olympics. Few will ever forget how he fought back in 1988.
In the springboard event he missed one dive and hit the board with his head.

Physicians stitched his cut, and he went on to win. In the platform diving he won the gold on his final performance with an incredible reverse three-and-a-half somersault tuck. It was a breathtaking finish that brought Americans to their feet. It was the same dive that clinched the gold for Louganis in the '84 games.

When reporters hounded him in Los Angeles he gave them a very unusual response. They asked, "What were you thinking about as you prepared for your final dive?" Maybe they were referring to the pressure, or to the fact that that dive is extremely dangerous and killed a Soviet diver just a year before in 1983. Louganis' simple answer was, "I was thinking that no matter what happens, my mother will still love me."

When Greg was just eleven, he became very frustrated at his diving performance in an early and important meet. Frances Louganis took her son aside and said, "I do not come to see you win. I come to see you dive. Just do your best. I will love you no matter what." That unconditional love carried her son to forty-three national diving titles, six Pan-American gold medals, five world championships, one Olympic silver medal, and four Olympic gold medals.

My friends, may I remind you that God does not look to see if we are winning. He watches over us because he loves us and He will love us no matter what!
Conc: In the Jewish temple and tabernacle there burned a lamp, a light of sacrifice that never went out. Day and night summer and winter, it shed its soft and mystic glow within the holy place. In the temple of the life, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ there Is a lamp, a light that never GOES out. The oil that supplied it was never exhausted. No scorn, no hostility, no hatred could ever quench it. It Is the light of love.

Today, that same light still shines in the darkness of this world. That same light still illuminates the lonely road to Heaven. That light still sends its glow into hearts that have been afflicted and plunged into darkness by sin. It still brightens the way for those who are searching for hope in a hopeless world. It still shines to remind us that there is a God in Heaven Who loves us with an uncommon, uncomplicated, unconditional love. Today, God has reminded us again of this great, heavenly truth, “A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly: and there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother,” (Proverbs 18:24).

Do you need that Friend today? If you do, you can come to Him and by faith He will save your soul if you are lost. If you have strayed away from Him and have strained your friendship with Him, you can return to Him and find that He is a faithful friend that always forgives those who come back. If you are carrying a heavy burden, and need a friend to help shoulder that load, there is no better friend than Jesus. He invites you to come, whatever the need may be, (Matt. 11:28).

A trucker tells the story on himself. He was yawning as he passed through rural North Carolina on Interstate 95, with only two more hours of driving, and then a good meal, some TV, a call home, and a warm bed. Most days on the road were like that--not quite as glamorous as some country-western singers suggest. A brown sedan entered the highway just ahead and began weaving back and forth between lanes, causing the trucker to throw his rig into a lower gear. At first he thought it was a drunk, but as the trucker came closer, he saw it was an older man shaking uncontrollably. The trucker was wide awake now. The car swerved violently, whipping its CB antenna like a fishing rod. "That's it," thought the trucker, "the CB."

So he called in, "You in the brown Chevy, if you can hear me, pull over. Pull off the road!" Amazingly, the car slowed down and pulled to a stop alongside the road. The trucker pulled up behind him and jumped out of his cab. The elderly man staggered from his car and fell into the trucker's hands. On a rock on the side of Interstate 95, the older man poured out his story of months of fear and pain that accompanied the illness of his only daughter. He was returning now from the hospital where she had revealed that she had decided to cease any further treatment. In the hospital, each put on a face of stoic strength. But out on the road, it had suddenly come over him, and waves of tears and grief overwhelmed him. The encounter was over in less than an hour. Wrenching sobs gave way to serenity, to a warm embrace, and to a new resolve to share pain rather than deny it. The trucker offered a simple prayer and they resumed their journeys.

For 50 miles they traveled in tandem, the young trucker using the CB to voice words of encouragement to his new friend. Finally, the older man announced his exit was next. The trucker said farewell, and asked if his friend could make it the rest of the way. Suddenly, a third voice could be heard across the airwaves. "Breaker 19, don't worry, good buddy. Go your way. I'll see him home!" Glancing in his rearview mirror, the trucker saw a livestock truck move into the exit lane behind the brown sedan. I’m glad that I can remind you today that we have a Friend Who will see us home! I sure am glad the Prince of Heaven loves paupers like you and me!

TODAY’S VERSE!
Matthew 12:50 (New King James Version (NKJV)
50 For whoever does the will of My Father in heaven is My brother and sister and mother.”

TODAY’S HYMN!
Oh, That Will Be Glory” By: Charles H. Gabriel (1900)

1. When all my labors and trials are o’er,
And I am safe on that beautiful shore,
Just to be near the dear Lord I adore,
Will through the ages be glory for me.
Refrain:
Oh, that will be glory for me,
Glory for me, glory for me,
When by His grace I shall look on His face,
That will be glory, be glory for me.

2. When, by the gift of His infinite grace,
I am accorded in heaven a place,
Just to be there and to look on His face,
Will through the ages be glory for me.
Refrain:

3. Friends will be there I have loved long ago;
Joy like a river around me will flow;
Yet just a smile from my Savior, I know,
Will through the ages be glory for me.
Refrain:

TODAY’S PRAYER!
Almighty Father, God of Love, Grace and Mercy! Open the eyes of our heart so we may see the hope and power of Your love at work in us. Help us to understand our glorious inheritance that You have prepared for us. Enable us to comprehend the magnitude of Your Love and Power on our behalf. Your love is unconditional, O Lord, but Your salvation is conditional. Teach us how to do Your will and live to Your glory. We seek Your love, presence, power and mercy to be manifested in our lives. We pray and we thank You in the glorious name of Jesus our Savior. Amen!

BE SURE TO READ MY DAILY “DID YOU KNOW” POST!
SHARE THIS LESSON WITH FRIENDS AND INVITE THEM TO JOIN THE TEAM!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JADOMB 4/17/2013 12:44AM

    Our Father's love is something that was meant to be passed on. That is what is missing in so many youths these days, they don't know what a father's love is. No wonder there are so many lost souls in this world.

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ANHELIC 4/16/2013 11:45PM

    Thank you Vic for the awesome message, hymn and prayer. What a feeling knowing that we have an eternal friend that will never leave us or forsake us. He will comfort us throughout each day and through every trial. Thank you for the goodie and note Vic. God Bless.

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LOSTLIME 4/16/2013 2:26PM

    terrific blog! thank you for sharing!

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CANDOIT54 4/16/2013 10:18AM

    emoticon thank you for sharing


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TONYVAND1 4/16/2013 9:20AM

  Open the eyes of my heart Lord so that I too can see your marvelous deeds

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NELLIEH1 4/16/2013 9:11AM

    Almighty GOD of Love, to You be all the glory! May those families in Boston who have lost loved ones and those who have been badly injured know Your incredible unconditional love today and each day forward. May Your grace wrap each one powerfully round about in Your presence and assurance and comfort. In the Name of our Risen Saviour, Jesus Christ.

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RSSSLHB 4/16/2013 8:44AM

    Vic your doing a emoticon job emoticon

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JOANIE69 4/16/2013 7:49AM

    emoticon and uplifting! Glory to God!
"Oh, that will be glory for me,
Glory for me, glory for me,
When by His grace I shall look on His face,
That will be glory, be glory for me. "
emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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SANDRALEET 4/16/2013 7:28AM

    we are his with him we make it

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AZMOMXTWO 4/16/2013 7:25AM

  awesome thank you

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FOLLOWING IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF FAITH, Mon, 4/15/2013

Monday, April 15, 2013

FOLLOWING IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF FAITH, Mon, 4/15/2013

David: A Man, After God’s Own Heart

1 Samuel 18:1-4
THE PRINCE AND THE PAUPER, Lesson 9b

JONATHAN’S LOVE WAS AN UNCOMPLICATED LOVE

According to verse one, Jonathan loved David just as he was. Think about it! David was nobody from nowhere, but Jonathan saw something in little David that ignited love in his heart. He loved David just because he was David, and for no other reason! The prince loved the pauper and his soul was “knit” with the soul of David. The word “knit” means “to tie, or to bind together.” There was nothing in David to cause this love to grow, yet it was there just the same. The prince loved the pauper with an uncomplicated love.

This is a clear picture of the grace of God. This is portrait of how we are loved by the Lord Jesus Christ. His love for us is not based on our worth or our merit. The Bible is clear, in our natural state; we possess nothing that would commend us to the Lord, (Eph. 2:1-3; Rom. 8:7; Eph. 4:18-19).

But, He loves us anyway! His love for us is pure, perfect and uncomplicated.
His Love Is Primary Love – (1 John 4:10; 4:19) – Even when we could not love Him because of our sinful condition, He loved us anyway!

His Love Is Perpetual Love – (Jer. 31:3) – The love God has for you and me is a love that had no beginning and will have no ending. His love is everlasting!
His Love Is Proven Love – (Rom. 5:8; 1 John 4:8-9) – The love of God found its ultimate expression the day Jesus died on the cross for our sins. God sent His Son, (John 3:16), to die for a fallen, wayward, sinful race, (Isa. 52:4-6). And, He did it all because He loves us!

God knew that we could never love Him like He loves us; but He loved us anyway! He knew that we would never show our love for Him to the same degree He demonstrated His love for us; but He loved us anyway! He knew there was nothing about us that merited His love; but He loved us anyway! He knew that we would trample Him and His love under our sinful feet; but He loved us anyway!
We will never understand it, but God’s love for us is really, very uncomplicated. He loves us because He is God and God is Love! He loves us because that is His nature, (1 John 4:7; Eph. 2:4). Thank God that His love for us is not based on what we deserve! He loves us because that is His choice!

TODAY’S VERSE!
Proverbs 3:24 (New King James Version (NKJV)

24 When you lie down, you will not be afraid;
Yes, you will lie down and your sleep will be sweet.

TODAY’S HYMN!
“The Greatest Commands” By: Traditional (1993)

Alto:
Love one another, for love is of God.
He who loves is born of God;
And knows God.
He who does not love, does not know God,
For God is love, God is love, God is love.

ADD Bass:
Love bears all things,
Believes all things,
Love hopes all things,
Endures all things.

ADD Tenor:
God is love, God is love, God is love.
God is love, God is love, God is love.
God is love, God is love, God is love,
God is love, God is love, God is love.

ADD Soprano:
Love the Lord thy God with all thy heart,
With all thy soul, all thy strength,
All thy mind.
Love the Lord thy God with all thy heart,
For God is love, God is love, God is love.


TODAY’S PRAYER!
Holy Father, God of Love and Mercy! We want to go where You go and stay where You stay. We are grateful the final grounds of holy fellowship are in You; that we are related to one another through Jesus. Thank You for the gift of Your Holy Spirit who lives and travels with us as we go through this life. May we bless others with Your presence as You have blessed us with Yours. Help us to believe in our gifts and be thankful for the opportunity to use them to Your glory. Help us to learn to see people as You see and love them. Help us to understand that You created each and every person. Help us to value every soul we meet with Your kind of love. These things we pray in Jesus’ name as we come before Your throne of grace. Amen!

BE SURE TO READ MY DAILY “DID YOU KNOW” POST!
SHARE THIS LESSON WITH FRIENDS AND INVITE THEM TO JOIN THE TEAM!





  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

RSSSLHB 4/16/2013 8:43AM

    emoticon Vic for posting

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SANDRALEET 4/16/2013 7:27AM

    We are his with him we make it in this life

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JOANIE69 4/15/2013 9:11PM

    If God did not love us with unconditional love, what hope would we have - for then He would not have sent His Son to redeem us. Then too, He would be angry with all our disobedience, instead of remembering our frame as He does instead, and seeing us through the eyes of Jesus. There was an Amy Grant song about "My Father's Eyes" years ago that I loved. I still pray to this day that God will help me to see others through His eyes...through my Father's eyes rather than through my own. God is love, and we show that we are Christians by our love for Him and for others. Thanks Vic, and God bless you.

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TONYVAND1 4/15/2013 7:43PM

  What a loving good God we serve. Thanks Vic.

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JADOMB 4/15/2013 2:01PM

    He is truly a loving God. With so many "prodigal" sons and daughters running amok on earth, we are so fortunate that he is.

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CASTIRONLADY 4/15/2013 9:25AM

    I praise God for His Perfect Love and His Perfect Plan for us through His Son Jesus Christ! I thank God for you.

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LOSTLIME 4/15/2013 8:56AM

    Thank you for this blog. His love is unconditional. We are so lucky that God loves us as we are.

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SWEETMAGNOLIA2 4/15/2013 8:29AM

    Thank you, Vic, for all the goodies and encouragements! Yes, God loves us as we are. May the knowledge of this awaken a greater love for Him.

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ANHELIC 4/15/2013 8:12AM

    Thank you Vic for another great lesson, hymn and prayer. I am thankful for God's uncomplicated and everlasting love. May we love one another in the same way and cherish our Christian friends that God has put in our path to help us grow. Those who don't know God, let them see Him through our lives and actions. Thank you Vic for you lessons and helping us grow deeper in God's love and learning. Thank you for the goodie and note. God Bless you.

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NELLIEH1 4/15/2013 8:05AM

    "Here is Love, vast as the ocean!" GOD's unconditional love for all mankind past, present and future," is not wanting/willing that anyone be lost/to perish, but that all people everywhere come to repentance." (2 Peter 3:9) "GOD our Saviour wants all men and women to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth." (1 Timothy 2:4) Oh that we each who do know Him would be disciples-in-the-making and constantly make connections with those who are not yet Jesus followers, so that all in our spheres of influence could be shown and told something about the Living Christ, who "is the same yesterday, today and forever!" (Hebrews 13:8)

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SANDRALEET 4/15/2013 7:45AM

    God loves all Even those who are not saved He hates whot we do that is sin He separates the two

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AZMOMXTWO 4/15/2013 7:39AM

  emoticon

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FOLLOWING IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF FAITH, Sun, 4/14/2013

Sunday, April 14, 2013

FOLLOWING IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF FAITH, Sun, 4/14/2013

David: A Man After God’s Own Heart

1 Samuel 18:1-4
THE PRINCE AND THE PAUPER, Lesson 9a

As David moved through the days of his life, he was a man truly blessed by the Lord. God was gracious to David in that God placed in his life certain people on whom David could lean during the hard times of life. The people provided a strong support system for David and helped him make it through many dark hours in his life.
One of the most precious and profound of the relationships David enjoyed was the friendship he had with King Saul’s son Jonathan. Jonathan was a true friend of God to young David. In fact, the very name “Jonathan” means “Jehovah has given.” Jonathan was strategically placed in David’s life at the very time David needed a genuine friend. Jonathan proved to be the greatest and dearest friend that David would know in his entire life.

It is a shame and a disgrace that some have tried to take this precious, godly relationship between two men and make it into something it was not. Some have taken the words of 2 Samuel 1:26 and have twisted them to imply that David and Jonathan were lovers. Nothing could be farther from the truth! What is true is the fact that Jonathan became to David the rarest of gifts: he became a true, intimate, genuine friend!

You see, as you pass through this life, you will make hundreds and even thousands of acquaintances; but you will have few real friends. In fact, if you develop two or three genuine friendships during your lifetime, you are a blessed person.

So, what is a real friend? One person said, “A friend--a true friend--the first person who comes in when the whole world has gone out.” Another said, “A friend is someone who understands your past, believes in your future, and accepts you today just the way you are.” We ought to praise the Lord for the few, genuine friends we possess in our lives!

I want to examine this precious friendship between David and Jonathan. I want you to see the greatness of their friendship. But, I want you to see the even greater friendship that is pictured in these verses. For here, we can see a portrait of the love Jesus Christ has for the saints of God. You see, the saints of God have a genuine friend in the Lord Jesus. And, by observing the signs of friendship, as they are given in the Word of God, we can understand something about the greatness of Christ’s love for His people. So, let’s examine this friendship that David enjoyed with Jonathan and seek to understand the friendship we enjoy with Jesus. I want to teach on the subject, “The Prince And The Pauper”. Please allow me to share with you the signs of a genuine friendship.

JONATHAN’S LOVE WAS AN UNCOMMON LOVE

Verse 4 tells us that Jonathan removed his princely robe and placed it on David. He even gave David his sword, his bow and his girdle or belt. In other words, Jonathan willing laid aside the symbols of his position as the crown prince of Israel and gave them to David. When someone saw David on that day, they might have mistaken him for Jonathan. That is a picture of a love that involves personal, profound sacrifice. It is a picture of uncommon love!

This kind of love can also be seen in (1 Sam. 23:17). There, Jonathan reveals to David that he knows David will ascend to the throne of Israel after Saul. But, Jonathan is not jealous of David. He intends to stand by David, even as David assumes a throne that should have belonged to Jonathan. Again, that is a picture of selfless, personal sacrifice.

Jonathan consistently placed David ahead of himself. That is what a true friend always does!

This is a picture of the love Jesus has for His people. Just as Jonathan laid aside the royal robes and gave them to David; Jesus has done the same for His children. Consider (Phil. 2:5-8). That glorious passage reminds us that Jesus laid aside His Own robes of glory for a time to come to this world to die for us. And in His dying and His resurrection from the dead, Jesus made a way that old sinners like us could be clothed in His robes of righteousness. His death is proof positive of His uncommon love for lost sinners, (Rom. 5:8; John 15:13; 1 John 3:16; 4:9-10).

Like David we were nothing but paupers, dressed in the rags of our sins, (Isa. 64:6), until Jesus came to us in His love; saved us by His grace and clothed us in His Own righteous robes, (Isa. 61:10; Rom. 4:16-25)! Now, in heaven, we are in Jesus, (Col. 3:3); we are seated with Jesus, (Eph. 2:6); and the Father in Heaven sees us as if we were Jesus, (Rom. 4:24). Thank God for the Lord’s uncommon love!

TODAY’S VERSE!
Matthew 6:9 (New King James Version (NKJV)

9 In this manner, therefore, pray:
Our Father in heaven,
Hallowed be Your name.

TODAY’S HYMN!
“What A Friend We Have In Jesus” By: Joseph M. Scriven (1855)

1. What a friend we have in Jesus,
All our sins and griefs to bear!
What a privilege to carry
Everything to God in prayer!
Oh, what peace we often forfeit,
Oh, what needless pain we bear,
All because we do not carry
Everything to God in prayer!

2. Have we trials and temptations?
Is there trouble anywhere?
We should never be discouraged—
Take it to the Lord in prayer.
Can we find a friend so faithful,
Who will all our sorrows share?
Jesus knows our every weakness;
Take it to the Lord in prayer.

3. Are we weak and heavy-laden,
Cumbered with a load of care?
Precious Savior, still our refuge—
Take it to the Lord in prayer.
Do thy friends despise, forsake thee?
Take it to the Lord in prayer!
In His arms He’ll take and shield thee,
Thou wilt find a solace there.

4. Blessed Savior, Thou hast promised
Thou wilt all our burdens bear;
May we ever, Lord, be bringing
All to Thee in earnest prayer.
Soon in glory bright, unclouded,
There will be no need for prayer—
Rapture, praise, and endless worship
Will be our sweet portion there.


TODAY’S PRAYER!
Loving Father, Glorious God! As the watch of night begins, we pour out our hearts like water before You, for in prayer we find hope in the midst of sorrow. Give us an undivided heart and put a new spirit in us. Fill us with Your great love and help us to keep our hearts right with You. Take away any hard-heartedness from our hearts and fill them with Your Truth and Grace. Take charge of our hearts and light a new flame of godly desire that will never go out, so we may live by faith for the Son of God. It is in His glorious name that we pray. Amen!

BE SURE TO READ MY DAILY “DID YOU KNOW” POST!
SHARE THIS LESSON WITH FRIENDS AND INVITE THEM TO JOIN THE TEAM!


  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

IAM_HIS 4/15/2013 8:37AM

    Wow, what a beautiful blog...something that I will share with my youngest daughter...this will be an awesome teaching for her. Thank you Vic.

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RSSSLHB 4/15/2013 6:56AM

    emoticon Vic

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ANHELIC 4/14/2013 10:53PM

    Thank you Vic for such a powerful lesson, hymn and prayer. May we all be Jonathons and hold up our friends before us. Jesus is our truest friend ever and when He laid down His life for us. What a sacrifice Jesus performed to show His love for us and give us life everlasting. Praise His Holy Name. thank you Vic for the goodie and note. You are an awesome teacher and friend. God Bless You.

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TXGRANDMA 4/14/2013 4:55PM

    Wow, Vic! That is powerful.......Thanks so much for reminding us of this. How great that Jonathan stuck by David even though he knew that David would take "his" place! But, then, it was the will of God.......

I thank God every day for sending his only son, Jesus, to die for us. That is a very difficult concept to understand, without the Grace of God within us! Jesus, who was without sin, died, that we may live! PTL! emoticon

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LOOKINGUP2012 4/14/2013 3:25PM

    What a friend we have in Christ! Jonathan was a God fearing man.

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JOANIE69 4/14/2013 12:46PM

    What a friend we have in Jesus, and what would we ever do without Him? He is a Friend that sticks closer than a brother or sister, and every day He grows sweeter to me. Praise Him, and thank you for this lesson.

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AZMOMXTWO 4/14/2013 12:32PM

  emoticon

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JADOMB 4/14/2013 12:07PM

    I have been blessed to have a few true friends over my lifetime. Sadly though, time and distance has taken them away. But I will never forget what true friendship is like. One of my favorite sayings is, "A friend is one that will bail you out of jail, but a true friend is one that will be in jail with you. " LOL Many of the Biblical characters that were true friends did indeed end up in jail or death with their friends. They were true friends to the end.

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LOSTLIME 4/14/2013 8:56AM

    So true. We make many aquaintenaces but if we are lucky find that one rare friend that is always there through the rough and the good times. I have one of those rare finds. God sent her to me when I needed someone. She is always there for me.

Thank you,Vic!

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NELLIEH1 4/14/2013 8:30AM

    What a Friend indeed is our Saviour and Lord of our lives!! Jonathan and David made a covenant relationship with all the signs/symbols of that reality. Our Lord Jesus Christ has made a covenant relationship with us and He has done it all! ( just as GOD did it all with Abram/Abraham in Genesis 12 and 15!) HalleluJAH!! Thanks again, Vic.

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SANDRALEET 4/14/2013 7:26AM

    What we need God sends in our path .That is how we use our hands eyes and body to help others We are Gods workers That is whot we see in this story

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TONYVAND1 4/14/2013 7:25AM

  May I be a Jonathan to you Vic

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