Jeremiah 45:4 How To Be Encouraged Always

Jeremiah 45:4 (KJV)
Thus shalt thou say unto him, The LORD saith thus; Behold, that which I have built will I break down, and that which I have planted I will pluck up, even this whole land.

It is no wonder that Baruch was discouraged. He had ministered alongside Jeremiah through his preaching to Jerusalem until the Jews were conquered. He had written in a book the words of Jeremiah only to have them burned by the king. He had witnessed the carrying away of the Jews and then had fallen victim with Jeremiah of the remaining Jews as they foolishly fled to Egypt. And now they expected Babylon to defeat Egypt too.

A believer, right with God, still endures the hardness brought on by foolish unbelievers. I love the Lord, but I still must pay these crazy prices for gasoline our current administration has caused.

God gave Jeremiah a message to encourage and steal him for the days ahead. Essentially it was, don’t seek great things for yourself. God intended difficulty upon the flesh of man, and Baruch would endure his share of that trial.

The promise, the comfort, was that God would give him his life as a prey. Nothing in the world would take that from him.

Nothing this world does, says, believes, or inflicts upon the Christian can remove from him his eternal life. That is a gift from God, and nothing shall separate us from it.

Find encouragement in that, and you will be encouraged regardless of the circumstances.

To my readers:
Thank you! It is a great joy to me to know you read the thoughts and lessons God has given me in His word. I would love to hear from you. Please feel free to leave comments.

Donate to Bible Baptist Church every time you make an Amazon purchase through this link, https://smile.amazon.com/ch/91-1265824

For this and, more than 5600 earlier Daily Visits with God, visit https://mckenzie-visit-with-god.blogspot.com. There you will find daily visits going back to 2005.

If you have been blessed by this blog, please subscribe to my feed and share it with others.

For more resources from Pastor Marvin McKenzie visit http://puyallupbaptistchurch.com.

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Jeremiah 45:4 How To Be Encouraged Always

Luke 12:21 The Kind of Wealth God Respects

Luke 12:21 (KJV)
So is he that layeth up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.

Our current church culture, one where we value beautiful buildings, comfortable seating, and costly accouterments, tends to define “rich toward God” as being generous in our financial giving to church. To be sure, the Bible does teach us to give financially. It even tells us to do so both cheerfully and bountifully. I do not in any way deny or discourage that.

But I don’t believe that is the gist of this passage. Neither do I believe giving to church constitutes laying up treasure in heaven. Indeed, if our heart is in love with financial treasures, that’s a problem even if we have laid it up in heaven.

Consider the context. The point Jesus was making is that the man’s wealth, savings, and plans for bigger barns were meaningless. Our Father knows what we have need of. Our Father needs none of what we have. He is perfectly capable of caring for His own in a manner far exceeding what we may gain on our own. We cannot buy His favor nor develop a walk with Him by paying Him off.

Being rich toward God means having an increasing relationship and walking with Him. It means to live in constant preparedness for that night our soul will be required of us. Our treasure in heaven must be God alone.

That is the sort of wealth God respects.

To my readers:
Thank you! It is a great joy to me to know you read the thoughts and lessons God has given me in His word. I would love to hear from you. Please feel free to leave comments.

Donate to Bible Baptist Church every time you make an Amazon purchase through this link, https://smile.amazon.com/ch/91-1265824

For this and, more than 5600 earlier Daily Visits with God, visit https://mckenzie-visit-with-god.blogspot.com. There you will find daily visits going back to 2005.

If you have been blessed by this blog, please subscribe to my feed and share it with others.

For more resources from Pastor Marvin McKenzie visit http://puyallupbaptistchurch.com.

My books, and other resources, are available at:
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Buy me a coffee?

Luke 12:21 The Kind of Wealth God Respects

Jeremiah 42:9 Bad Influence

Jeremiah 42:9 (KJV)
And said unto them, Thus saith the LORD, the God of Israel, unto whom ye sent me to present your supplication before him;

I find Jeremiah preaching to three different congregations:

  • The first, the Jews before captivity
  • To the first he preached surrender.
  • The second by way of letter to the Jews that had been captured
  • To the second he preached submission.
  • The third, this one, to the Jews Babylon had elected to leave behind
  • To the third he preached stay in Judah.

The message in all three cases was essentially the same. At least in the first and last, the congregation made the same mistakes.
They feared the wrong opponent
In every case, the opponent was God. They couldn’t fathom that being the case, but God opposes sin, flesh, pride, and worldliness.

They rested in the wrong faith
In the first, they trusted in their blood. They could not believe God would allow an evil empire to conquer them, the children of God. In the latter, they trusted in Egypt. Since God had not protected them from the Babylonian siege, they could not see how they could trust God to protect them from further Babylonian incursions.

They listened to the wrong influence
There were other voices giving counsel contrary to Jeremiah. But Jeremiah got his message from God.

God still speaks today. He uses His Word, He uses His Holy Spirit, and He uses His preacher.  Don’t be like the Jews. Let the Lord lead you through those influences He provides.

To my readers:
Thank you! It is a great joy to me to know you read the thoughts and lessons God has given me in His word. I would love to hear from you. Please feel free to leave comments.

Donate to Bible Baptist Church every time you make an Amazon purchase through this link, https://smile.amazon.com/ch/91-1265824

For this and, more than 5600 earlier Daily Visits with God, visit https://mckenzie-visit-with-god.blogspot.com. There you will find daily visits going back to 2005.

If you have been blessed by this blog, please subscribe to my feed and share it with others.

For more resources from Pastor Marvin McKenzie visit http://puyallupbaptistchurch.com.

My books, and other resources, are available at:
https://marvinmckenzie.org

Buy me a coffee?

Jeremiah 42:9 Bad Influence

Jeremiah 39:18 Snatch Your Life Away from the World

Jeremiah 39:18 (KJV)
For I will surely deliver thee, and thou shalt not fall by the sword, but thy life shall be for a prey unto thee: because thou hast put thy trust in me, saith the LORD.

Imagine the situation. Babylon has been a threat to Jerusalem for some time. Nebuchadnezzar had already captured scores of the Jews. Nebuchadnezzar, at this time, had just completed a two-year-long siege of the city, culminating with its defeat. Zedekiah attempted an escape but was captured. He was forced to watch as the Babylonian king slew his children before him and plucked out his eyes.

In this situation, Jeremiah was to approach Ebedmelech, an Ethiopian man living among the Jews in Jerusalem. One might expect that his life was over. He was of no value to Babylon. There were no Jews to protect him. The city was destroyed. Surely, he would be next.

God had a different message for him. God said that He would deliver him from Babylon and that his life would be a prey for him.

A prey, is defined as an unexpected gain. A prey, in other words, a life snatched away.

Babylon had come to take the people as their prey. God gave Ebedmelech back his life as a prey snatched away from the Babylonians.

God’s Word commands us to snatch away our lives from this world. Don’t allow the world to take your life from you. Die to self, trust the Lord, and He will give your life back as a prey unto thee. 

Matthew 16:24-26 (KJV)
Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.
For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it.
For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?

To my readers:
Thank you! It is a great joy to me to know you read the thoughts and lessons God has given me in His word. I would love to hear from you. Please feel free to leave comments.

Donate to Bible Baptist Church every time you make an Amazon purchase through this link, https://smile.amazon.com/ch/91-1265824

For this and, more than 5600 earlier Daily Visits with God, visit https://mckenzie-visit-with-god.blogspot.com. There you will find daily visits going back to 2005.

If you have been blessed by this blog, please subscribe to my feed and share it with others.

For more resources from Pastor Marvin McKenzie visit http://puyallupbaptistchurch.com.

My books, and other resources, are available at:
https://marvinmckenzie.org

Buy me a coffee?

Jeremiah 39:18 Snatch Your Life Away from the World

Jeremiah 37:9 Everyone But God

Jeremiah 37:9 (KJV)
Thus saith the LORD; Deceive not yourselves, saying, The Chaldeans shall surely depart from us: for they shall not depart.

Just as people do today, the Jews sought help from everyone but God. With the Babylonians on the offense, Jerusalem looked to Egypt for help. Egypt – perhaps the oldest adversary (though not so much militarily but for sure spiritually.) It is a wonderment how blinded our eyes can become when we want something badly enough. Even the thing we know to be evil becomes good if it appears to help our goal.

And it appeared that it would help their goal of victory against Babylon and in utter rebellion against God. Or at least rebellion against the preacher; they were not convinced his message was from God. Jeremiah 37:11 (KJV)
And it came to pass, that when the army of the Chaldeans was broken up from Jerusalem for fear of Pharaoh’s army,

But notice Jeremiah 37:10 (KJV)
For though ye had smitten the whole army of the Chaldeans that fight against you, and there remained but wounded men among them, yet should they rise up every man in his tent, and burn this city with fire.

Gamaliel was correct. Acts 5:39 (KJV)
But if it be of God, ye cannot overthrow it; lest haply ye be found even to fight against God.

The force that opposed them at this moment was not Babylon but God. Should He choose to do so, God could use a bunch of cripples to bring Jerusalem into judgment.

The Jews believed they were going to defeat Babylon with the help of Egypt, but they did not.

People believe they have defeated God today. Politicians are turning against the believers. The attitudes of men seem to be turning against the believers. Acceptance of lifestyle choices the Bible denounces appears to be on the winning side.

Regardless of how things appear, God can use a hand full of crippled, poverty-stricken, and discounted believers, if necessary, to turn the world around and bring glory to the name of Jesus.

To my readers:
Thank you! It is a great joy to me to know you read the thoughts and lessons God has given me in His word. I would love to hear from you. Please feel free to leave comments.

Donate to Bible Baptist Church every time you make an Amazon purchase through this link, https://smile.amazon.com/ch/91-1265824

For this and, more than 5600 earlier Daily Visits with God, visit https://mckenzie-visit-with-god.blogspot.com. There you will find daily visits going back to 2005.

If you have been blessed by this blog, please subscribe to my feed and share it with others.

For more resources from Pastor Marvin McKenzie visit http://puyallupbaptistchurch.com.

My books, and other resources, are available at:
https://marvinmckenzie.org

Buy me a coffee?

Jeremiah 37:9 Everyone But God

Jeremiah 36:7 It May Be..

Jeremiah 36:7 (KJV)
It may be they will present their supplication before the LORD, and will return every one from his evil way: for great is the anger and the fury that the LORD hath pronounced against this people.

Humanly speaking Jeremiah was in a hopeless situation.

  • His preaching thus far had fallen on deaf ears
  • He had personally become so weary that he wanted to quit
  • He was, at this moment, shut up and could not go to the house of the Lord

Yet, God spoke to him once again with all that had been against him, and Jeremiah wrote it in a book. He then commanded Baruch, his assistant, to deliver it to the house of God and read it, saying, “It may be they will present their supplication before the Lord and return.. from his evil way.

We’ve read the end of the chapter
We know they did not return. Still, Jeremiah was hopeful in the Lord. That’s where all earnest believers ought to be. We ought to speak the Word of God (notice it was in the house of the Lord – it was the professing believers who need to return), and we ought to pray to the Lord. We ought to do that in hopefulness. Who knows what God’s Word might accomplish?

We’ve also read the end of the book of Jeremiah 
We know that the people go into captivity just as Jeremiah had said. The king could destroy one copy of the Word of God, but he could not destroy the Word of God.

We’ve further read the end of the Bible
God wins. Despite the rebellion and evil of men who have turned themselves into gods of their own will, God wins. In the end, people without number get saved. Christ sits on the throne of David in Jerusalem. The wicked are cast eternally into the Lake of Fire and brimstone, and every knee bows and every tongue confesses that Jesus is Lord to the glory of the Father.

It may be that our efforts and prayers right now may lead to someone trusting Christ and another turning from self-will.

To my readers:
Thank you! It is a great joy to me to know you read the thoughts and lessons God has given me in His word. I would love to hear from you. Please feel free to leave comments.

Donate to Bible Baptist Church every time you make an Amazon purchase through this link, https://smile.amazon.com/ch/91-1265824

For this and, more than 5600 earlier Daily Visits with God, visit https://mckenzie-visit-with-god.blogspot.com. There you will find daily visits going back to 2005.

If you have been blessed by this blog, please subscribe to my feed and share it with others.

For more resources from Pastor Marvin McKenzie visit http://puyallupbaptistchurch.com.

My books, and other resources, are available at:
https://marvinmckenzie.org

Buy me a coffee?

Jeremiah 36:7 It May Be..

Luke 7:4 The Best Building Block for Life

Luke 7:4 (KJV)
And when they came to Jesus, they besought him instantly, saying, That he was worthy for whom he should do this:

Here is a Gentile man, a soldier no less, of whom the elders of the Jews ascribed worth.

Thus, the subject of worth becomes the topic.

  • The elders of the Jews believed he was worthy
  • He said of himself that he was unworthy
  • Upon hearing him, Jesus honored him as worthy

My thought is this,
The Jews, who notoriously thought of Gentiles as dogs, saw his worth: because he loved Israel, and had built them a synagogue, and because he viewed himself as unworthy.

He loved the nation and built the synagogue precisely because he viewed himself as unworthy. He saw in their faith a truth that was higher than anything he had witnessed in the pagan world.

Jesus praised his faith as greater than anything He had seen in Israel. It was a faith that was born of his humility.

There is no greater block upon which to build friendships, businesses, and faith than the building block of humility.

To my readers:
Thank you! It is a great joy to me to know you read the thoughts and lessons God has given me in His word. I would love to hear from you. Please feel free to leave comments.

Donate to Bible Baptist Church every time you make an Amazon purchase through this link, https://smile.amazon.com/ch/91-1265824

For this and, more than 5600 earlier Daily Visits with God, visit https://mckenzie-visit-with-god.blogspot.com. There you will find daily visits going back to 2005.

If you have been blessed by this blog, please subscribe to my feed and share it with others.

For more resources from Pastor Marvin McKenzie visit http://puyallupbaptistchurch.com.

My books, and other resources, are available at:
https://marvinmckenzie.org

Buy me a coffee?

Luke 7:4 The Best Building Block for Life

Luke 6:3 Apples and Oranges

Luke 6:3 (KJV)
And Jesus answering them said, Have ye not read so much as this, what David did, when himself was an hungred, and they which were with him;

Apples and Oranges

People who consider themselves to be expert in debate and argument have devised what they consider to be the “rules of engagement” for debating ideas and disagreements. One of those rules would have to do with comparing apples to apples. According to their rules of engagement it would be inappropriate to bring an orange to an apple debate.

Interesting

The debate of our text has to do with Jesus’ disciples plucking and eating corn on the Sabbath. Jesus, referring them to the Word of God, reminds them of David taking bread from the tabernacle when he and his men were hungry. He then applied that to the Sabbath and declared Himself to be Lord of the Sabbath.

I understand those who hold to the debating rules would likely not consider Jesus to be their foremost expert. Those of us who are believers really should.

Here’s the lesson

The answer isn’t in the apples or the oranges. It is in the Word of God.  The Bible takes us to Jesus Christ who is Lord and Master of it all.

  • Know the Bible
  • Believe the Bible
  • Do and obey the Bible

That is all.

To my readers:
Thank you! It is a great joy to me to know you read the thoughts and lessons God has given me in His word. I would love to hear from you. Please feel free to leave comments.

Donate to Bible Baptist Church every time you make an Amazon purchase through this link, https://smile.amazon.com/ch/91-1265824

For this and, more than 5600 earlier Daily Visits with God, visit https://mckenzie-visit-with-god.blogspot.com. There you will find daily visits going back to 2005.

If you have been blessed by this blog, please subscribe to my feed and share it with others.

For more resources from Pastor Marvin McKenzie visit http://puyallupbaptistchurch.com.

My books are available at:
https://marvinmckenzie.org

Luke 6:3 Apples and Oranges

Jeremiah 31:19 So Much Better

Jeremiah 31:19 (KJV)
Surely after that I was turned, I repented; and after that I was instructed, I smote upon my thigh: I was ashamed, yea, even confounded, because I did bear the reproach of my youth.

Vitally important to the text is the context of hopefulness through the promised Saviour. He is referenced both in verse 15 and in verse 22. These verses, and their fulfillment in Christ, prove this passage to be Messianic.

Now note the progression of our text.
After I was turned, I repented
The word, turned, has to do with retreat or surrender. The lost man is at odds with God. He fights the Lord. He fights His Word. He fights His righteousness. No one ever finds hope before surrendering that battle. It is only after he turns that He repents. He has a change of heart, mind, and direction.

After I repented, I was instructed
Having had a change in heart and mind, man can now receive instruction. One of the most useless things I have ever attempted is to instruct one whose mind is already set. He is unreachable until he surrenders and repents.

After I was instructed, I bore the reproach of my youth
The process of sanctification, that of putting off the sins of the flesh, happens only after one has a new heart. The Great Commission sets the order as 
1. Teach them the Gospel. 
2. Baptize those who are converted through it. 
3. Finally, teach them to observe all things that Jesus commanded. 

Once a soul has repented, they then have the clarity of mind to recognize sin for what it is, become ashamed of it, and put it off in favor of something so much better.

To my readers:
Thank you! It is a great joy to me to know you read the thoughts and lessons God has given me in His word. I would love to hear from you. Please feel free to leave comments.

Donate to Bible Baptist Church every time you make an Amazon purchase through this link, https://smile.amazon.com/ch/91-1265824

For this and, more than 5600 earlier Daily Visits with God, visit https://mckenzie-visit-with-god.blogspot.com. There you will find daily visits going back to 2005.

If you have been blessed by this blog, please subscribe to my feed and share it with others.

For more resources from Pastor Marvin McKenzie visit http://puyallupbaptistchurch.com.

My books are available at:
https://marvinmckenzie.org

Jeremiah 31:19 So Much Better

Luke 5:23 Jesus Has a Priority Too

Luke 5:23 (KJV)
Whether is easier, to say, Thy sins be forgiven thee; or to say, Rise up and walk?

We discover in this passage a key to Christian faith and life. Both:

  • Thy sins be forgiven thee and
  • Rise up and walk

are impossible declarations. Only God could do either.

The crippled man’s friends brought him to Jesus, seeking his healing. That was their priority. So many people believe that the purpose of faith is “health, wealth, and prosperity.” Among the believers with whom I fellowship, we would deny it, but observation bears out it’s still the thing for which we hope. We may bring a friend to church hoping they get saved, but we also hope that, in salvation, they will find happiness, deliverance from sin, healing in their marriage, and so on. I am not criticizing; I’m just saying.

Jesus did not immediately heal this man. What He did was forgive his sins. The faith of his friends did not instantly translate to healing his paralysis but in the forgiveness of sin.

It was not in response to their faith that the friend was healed. Jesus only did that as a sign for the Jews. Paul tells us that the need for such signs has passed.

The miracle of sins forgiven happens very often, every time a lost person is saved. It is the miracle for which we ought to pray and the one for which we ought to bring our friends to Jesus. Believing that our friends and loved ones can find forgiveness and eternal life; this is the one reason we ought to get people to church and to the Lord.

If God does any other wonderful thing in their life, is an incidental matter. It’s not the thing “to write home about.” The miracle that Jesus sets as His own priority is the forgiveness of their sins.

To my readers:
Thank you! It is a great joy to me to know you read the thoughts and lessons God has given me in His word. I would love to hear from you. Please feel free to leave comments.

Donate to Bible Baptist Church every time you make an Amazon purchase through this link, https://smile.amazon.com/ch/91-1265824

For this and, more than 5600 earlier Daily Visits with God, visit https://mckenzie-visit-with-god.blogspot.com. There you will find daily visits going back to 2005.

If you have been blessed by this blog, please subscribe to my feed and share it with others.

For more resources from Pastor Marvin McKenzie visit http://puyallupbaptistchurch.com.

My books are available at:
https://marvinmckenzie.org

Luke 5:23 Jesus Has a Priority Too