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.
[April 06]—Heart Transplant
Once again we see here a huge difference between biblical Christianity and all the other faiths out there. Everyone else gives you a list of rules and says “DO!” Our Savior offers something very different. Let’s look at it.
At the beginning of the Covenant instituted at Sinai, Moses and the people of Israel were given a set of laws and rules. And let’s be clear: There was nothing wrong with the rules. Unlike all the other sets of rules in history, this was literally straight from God. And anyone who disparages the Law of Moses needs to come to grips with the fact that the best aspects of Western Civilization are built on that foundation.
I need to emphasize this: The problem was not with the set of rules. The problem was with the people. Jeremiah also had a passage talking in similar terms about the New Covenant, in which he promised the Lord would write his law on their hearts, as opposed to the Old Covenant in which he wrote his law on tablets of stone.
You see, that’s what has to happen. All of us are born with a sinful nature inherited ultimately from Adam, and this nature hates God and his law: “The mind governed by the flesh [the sinful nature] is hostile to God; it does not submit to God’s law, nor can it do so.”
Governments can write all the laws they want, but I guarantee you they won’t come up with anything nearly as good as what God gave us. So their laws are not nearly as good as his, and they still haven’t solved the problem.
But the Lord, through his prophet here, is promising that the days are coming in which he’ll be cleansing them from their sin (which the Old Covenant sacrifices never could do) and will take out their heart of stone and replace it with a heart of flesh. And he'll put his Spirit within us and move us to follow his decrees and keep his laws.
That’s a major part of the New Covenant which we experience right here and now as Christians. If you’ve been a believer for any length of time then you know what I’m talking about. You want to obey and please your Father. You want to feel his smile, not his frown upon you. You want to see his name being glorified, right?
If not, there’s a problem.
You can squelch the voice of the Spirit in your life, but he’s always whispering in your ear, and he’ll give you no more peace until you listen and obey. And if you continue to ignore him, he’ll start speaking in louder and less pleasant ways.
Most importantly, if you don’t see this change in your desires which leads to a change in your lifestyle, then you need to examine a much darker possibility. Maybe you’ve been fooling yourself with false assurance. Based on 1 John’s warnings, I’ve written on this before (see the link above to "Assurance, Part Two").
But I’d like to move past the negative warnings to the positive promises. He's promised that he would, and he did. He’s forgiven us our sins and is in the process of cleansing them from our lives. He’s given us his Spirit and taken out the heart of stone and replaced it with a heart of flesh. He’s moved us to please him, and made it pleasant to do so.
Take a moment to thank him for all this, will you?
Father God, Lord Jesus, Holy Spirit, One-In-Three, you've done so much for me. Thank you so much for what you’ve done, what you’re doing, and for what’s to come.