OK, here's the plan (if God is willing):

1) Every day will be a new devotional. I have enough devotionals for every day for three years

2) Also as I can, I'll be posting on my new political blog (see bottom of page).

Some other housecleaning:

A) If you'd like to just get new postings sent to your email, just submit your address in the box on the left just below. There's just one possible downside, though. Occasionally I'll add a music video at the end that's relevant to the devotional, and you won't get them in the email sent to you. If I add a video though, I'll make sure to mention in the posting, so you'll know to come to the site to see it if you'd like.

B) I actually finished writing new blog posting for the TAWG at the end of 2016. So what I'm doing now is at the beginning of every month, I'll move the earliest month from 3 years ago ahead so that a "new" posting appears every day. That's why you won't find any postings for January 2014, for example.

C) When I started this Blog, I was using the 1984 edition of the NIV, and that’s what I linked to on the Biblegateway site. However, in 2011 Zondervan updated its edition and thus reworded a lot of the NIV translation. Therefore, all the links which went to the 1984 edition now redirect to the 2011 edition, which often has slightly different wording. Thus, part of my editing process has been to update my Scripture quotes in my postings. But I might have missed some, in which case you might see my quote in the posting as a little different from what comes up when you click on my citation link, since that redirects to the 2011 edition on the Biblegateway site. It's a good thing that we realize that the work of translation never ends, but it can be a kind of a pain on a site like this. If you see any difference in verbiage between my quote and what shows up as a link on the Biblegateway site, or if you hover over a link and it has "NIV1984" at the end of it, please notify me and I'll correct it.

D) I can't believe I have to say this, but here goes. At the end of every posting is a suggested short prayer that has to do with what we discussed. This is actually what I've prayed when I finished writing it. In no way am I asking you to pray the exact verbiage of my suggested prayer. It's just a springboard for your own prayer, nothing more. Quite frankly, I've never been a fan of praying rote prayers written by someone else. As with everything else I do here, to the degree it helps, great; to the degree it doesn't, chunk it.

As always, thank you so much for reading, even if it's to read one post. God bless.

[Aug 06]--How Did He View Himself?

John 1:19-28

“No one greater born among women” “Prophet of the Most High” “The Elijah Who Was To Come” These are pretty lofty compliments and titles for John the Baptist. He was considered a great prophet sent by the Lord. You’ll find some disciples of his even in the book of Acts, decades after the events of the Gospels. In fact, did you know that there are still followers of John the Baptist to this day in the Middle East?

But how did he view himself? Some representatives of the religious leaders came to see this new teacher and find out what he was claiming and if he was going to be a threat to their establishment. Their questions to him and his direct answers provide some insight into this man.

First and foremost, he wanted to make it perfectly clear that he was not the Messiah. The phrase “confessed freely” is very emphatic. He didn’t hem and haw about it: He wanted to squash that rumor and speculation in its cradle. Then they asked him if he was the return of Elijah (who'd been taken up to heaven without dying), and he denied it. Then they asked him if he was the "Prophet" (which Moses had predicted), and again he denied it, especially since Moses was referring to the Messiah in that passage.

This might raise a question in some peoples’ minds: If he wasn’t Elijah, then why did Jesus say John was in Matt. 11:7-15? Because he was the fulfillment of the last verses of Malachi, and he had come in the spirit and power of Elijah.

So how did he view himself? He was nothing but a voice, an announcer for the coming Messiah. He was there for one main purpose: to point people towards Jesus, which meant that people had to get ready for him. We’ll talk more about his attitude towards Christ tomorrow. But for now we need to focus on his lifetime goal, which should be ours as well.

What can we learn from his example? When someone pays us a compliment, do we soak it up like a sponge? I know I do at times. But what I need to do--what we all need to do--is use that as an opportunity to point others towards our Savior.

Lord Jesus, may every word I speak, every action I take, everything about me point people towards you, never away from you. You're worthy of all the attention I can muster.

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