Luke 13:17 (KJV) Putting Our Enemies to Shame

Luke 13:17 (KJV)
And when he had said these things, all his adversaries were ashamed: and all the people rejoiced for all the glorious things that were done by him.


I imagine that this is where we get the phrase, “Putting your enemies to shame.” The Pharisees had issued a rather hasty order for a new problem, “When is it permissible to heal the sick?” It’s almost laughable, isn’t it, that they would even consider such a question? If someone is able to heal the sick let him do it! They were so trapped in their religious rules (which had long ago quit being from God’s Word) that they could not grasp how ludicrous it was to try to stop Him from healing this crippled woman, even if it was on the Sabbath.

Jesus answered their objection by pointing out an obvious exception to their rules; every one of them would feed and water his animals on the Sabbath. In another passage it is added that if an animal falls in a well on the Sabbath no one would let it die there. They would pull it out. How much more ought we to do all in our power to help a suffering person, even on a Sabbath?

Common sense slays a whole lot of religious idiocy. I am not calling for a rejection of faith. Common sense could never out match God’s Word. But when religion leaves the Bible it generally throws good common sense out with it.

 

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For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

Luke 13:17 (KJV) Putting Our Enemies to Shame

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2 Kings 10:5-9 (KJV) Loyalty to the Things of God

2 Kings 10:5-9 (KJV)
And he that was over the house, and he that was over the city, the elders also, and the bringers up of the children, sent to Jehu, saying, We are thy servants, and will do all that thou shalt bid us; we will not make any king: do thou that which is good in thine eyes.
Then he wrote a letter the second time to them, saying, If ye be mine, and if ye will hearken unto my voice, take ye the heads of the men your master’s sons, and come to me to Jezreel by to morrow this time. Now the king’s sons, being seventy persons, were with the great men of the city, which brought them up.
And it came to pass, when the letter came to them, that they took the king’s sons, and slew seventy persons, and put their heads in baskets, and sent him them to Jezreel.
And there came a messenger, and told him, saying, They have brought the heads of the king’s sons. And he said, Lay ye them in two heaps at the entering in of the gate until the morning.
And it came to pass in the morning, that he went out, and stood, and said to all the people, Ye be righteous: behold, I conspired against my master, and slew him: but who slew all these?

The commentaries I possess all focus on Jehu claiming that he has done and said all this in an effort to lessen the appearance of his own culpability in the deaths of the family of Ahab. That may well be the case yet Jehu has a point. Regardless of the reason, that the very men tasked with raising up these seventy sons of Ahab would kill those sons rather than die protecting them is a mark of

  • cowardice
  • carelessness and
  • lack of any sort of character

That this happens in the house of Ahab is significant. It stands to reason they would betray their loyalties as they had already betrayed their loyalty to God and to the family God had set up as the royal family in Israel. The next chapter takes us to Judah where indeed men and women of faith risked their lives to protect the royal seed.

This does not mean that the lack of character exhibited in this account never happens among the professed people of God. It does serve as a warning to those who would please the Lord that loyalty to the things of God is the premium.

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For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

2 Kings 10:5-9 (KJV) Loyalty to the Things of God

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2 Kings 8:4-5 (KJV) Worldly Indeed

2 Kings 8:4-5 (KJV)
And the king talked with Gehazi the servant of the man of God, saying, Tell me, I pray thee, all the great things that Elisha hath done.
And it came to pass, as he was telling the king how he had restored a dead body to life, that, behold, the woman, whose son he had restored to life, cried to the king for her house and for her land. And Gehazi said, My lord, O king, this is the woman, and this is her son, whom Elisha restored to life.

I note two men of worldly character, one interested to hear about Elisha and the other, excited to tell such an important man what he knows about Elisha. Neither of them is interested in either, talking about or hearing about the Lord.

There is a lesson for us here, if we will hear it. To make all our Christian conversation about great men of God, to either want to tell our own experiences or else to wish to hear about someone else experiences with them, and to have those conversations to the near exclusion of the Lord, is worldly indeed.

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For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

2 Kings 8:4-5 (KJV) Worldly Indeed

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Luke 11:42 (KJV) Wash It All

Luke 11:42 (KJV)
But woe unto you, Pharisees! for ye tithe mint and rue and all manner of herbs, and pass over judgment and the love of God: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone.

Jesus’ accusation against the Pharisees was that they concerned themselves only with the outward appearance and made little to no emphasis concerning the inner things. He used their complaint that His disciples didn’t wash enough as His object for the lesson. They, in effect, washed the outside of their plates so they looked clean but left the inside, where all the real filth was, alone.

Jesus doesn’t discourage washing our hands here. He tells them not to leave that undone. He does, however, urge that the inner plate is more important than the outer.

I think we see both extremes in modern Christianity.
On the one hand there are those whose only concern is appearances
They build extravagant buildings and put on the show for religion’s sake. It’s not just the big denominations that do it. We find this same action practiced all the way down to the single individual who dresses and behaves a particular way, all for appearance sake. If they have an inner spiritual concern it is barely recognizable under all their show.

On the other hand is the reactionary who, seeing the shallowness of religious appearance, has rejected all forms of outward conformity

  • They refuse to wear dress clothes to church.
  • They will not commit to regular church attendance.
  • They mock any form of separation or standards as legalism.

Jesus speaks to both crowds in this case and says, “these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone.”

In others words, wash both the inside and the outside of the plate.

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For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

Luke 11:42 (KJV) Wash It All

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2 Kings 5:20 (KJV) Gehazi Got Something

2 Kings 5:20 (KJV)
But Gehazi, the servant of Elisha the man of God, said, Behold, my master hath spared Naaman this Syrian, in not receiving at his hands that which he brought: but, as the LORD liveth, I will run after him, and take somewhat of him.

When Naaman offered a reward to Elisha he refused but Gehazi secretly approached him to get something from him. He got something all right. Besides the garments and silver, Gehazi received:

  • The leprosy Naaman had just been cleansed of
  • The reproach of his master, Elisha
  • The rejection of the same heritage Elisha had and
  • The remembrance of his actions into eternity

No amount of worldly gain is worth all that.

 

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For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

2 Kings 5:20 (KJV) Gehazi Got Something

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Luke 9:7-8 (KJV) Who Is Jesus?

Luke 9:7-8 (KJV)
Now Herod the tetrarch heard of all that was done by him: and he was perplexed, because that it was said of some, that John was risen from the dead;
And of some, that Elias had appeared; and of others, that one of the old prophets was risen again.

Luke 9:18-20 (KJV)
And it came to pass, as he was alone praying, his disciples were with him: and he asked them, saying, Whom say the people that I am?
They answering said, John the Baptist; but some say, Elias; and others say, that one of the old prophets is risen again.
He said unto them, But whom say ye that I am? Peter answering said, The Christ of God.

We have here two conversations, the topic of which is almost identical but the conclusion is almost opposite.

When Herod hears of Jesus he is told that some say he is John the Baptist or Elias or maybe one of the other prophets.
He knows it is not John the Baptist because he is the one who had him killed. His conclusion; he does not know who Jesus is.

When the disciples return to the Lord who asks them to who men said He was.
They reported just as Herod had heard, that they said he was John the Baptist or Elias or maybe one of the other prophets. Jesus asked who they, the disciples, believed him to be. Peter answered without hesitation, “The Christ of God.”

In a world of confusion the multitudes have no idea who Christ is. Some claim silly things about Him some can’t believe the supernatural truth about him some just ignore questions about Him.

Those who know Him Know Him to be God with us, the Christ of God and our Saviour.

 

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For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

Luke 9:7-8 (KJV) Who Is Jesus?

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Luke 8:25 (KJV) Christ’s Presence Produces Faith

Luke 8:25 (KJV)
And he said unto them, Where is your faith? And they being afraid wondered, saying one to another, What manner of man is this! for he commandeth even the winds and water, and they obey him.

As the waves of the storm grew worse the disciples, believing they were about to perish, eke Jesus. He calmed the storm but then asked the disciples, “Where is your faith?” This is interesting because they did, in the storm, call on Christ.

I conclude that:

  • There is a kind of prayer that is not of faith
  • There is a kind of Christianity that is not lived in faith
  • There is a way to be identified with Christ but not have faith in Christ

The difference I see between the disciples and the Lord is that He was asleep in the storm while they were sweating out the storm. Faith, it seems to me, would have been able to rest knowing that Christ was present. Faith would not have fretted. Faith would have called on Christ but would not have had to say, “We perish.”

Though they lacked faith and woke Him without faith, Jesus calmed the storm. I believe we can take heart in that. Though we may lack faith being in Christ’s presence tends to produce faith.

I want faith. And I want to stay close to the Lord as I grow faith.

 

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For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

Luke 8:25 (KJV) Christ’s Presence Produces Faith

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2 Kings 3:18 (KJV) It’s a Little Thing For God

2 Kings 3:18 (KJV)
And this is but a light thing in the sight of the LORD: he will deliver the Moabites also into your hand.

The king of Israel believed he and the two kings allied with him were about to die for thirst. They had gotten themselves and their troops so far out that water was nowhere to be found. The king of Judah was with them however, and recommended they seek a prophet. Elisha instructed them to dig ditches, which God would fill with water. This water would not only be to the saving of the troops but contribute to the demise of the enemy. Elisha said that God’s filling these ditches was “but a light thing.”

May I say that God’s care for us is also but a light thing?  Our hurdles can appear to us so overwhelming, so insurmountable but to God they are but light things.

They were saved because:

  • They had in their company a believer
  • They hearkened when he wanted to hear from a preacher and
  • They obeyed the instructions of that preacher even though those instructions seemed impossible

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For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

2 Kings 3:18 (KJV) It’s a Little Thing For God

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1 Kings 22:1-4 (KJV) You Are Asking For It

1 Kings 22:1-4 (KJV)
And they continued three years without war between Syria and Israel.
And it came to pass in the third year, that Jehoshaphat the king of Judah came down to the king of Israel.
And the king of Israel said unto his servants, Know ye that Ramoth in Gilead is ours, and we be still, and take it not out of the hand of the king of Syria?
And he said unto Jehoshaphat, Wilt thou go with me to battle to Ramothgilead? And Jehoshaphat said to the king of Israel, I am as thou art, my people as thy people, my horses as thy horses.

Even though Ahab was an ungodly man, he had been aided of the Lord to defeat Benhadad sufficiently enough to suppress any further war for three years. The only trouble was that Syria still held a city that Ahab thought belonged to him. This little detail had been a burr in his saddle all this time. For three years he had held onto his grudge, looking for the chance to strike at his enemy. He thought he found it through allegiance with Judah.

Jehoshaphat agreed to enter battle on Ahab’s side but he did request that they inquire of the Lord. The Word of the Lord pronounced Ahab’s doom.

  • His desire for victory over Syria
  • His carnal heart and
  • His belief that Judah’s help sealed his conquest

blinded him against the prophet’s warning and led to his death in the field.

It never serves any good purpose to hold on to a grudge, even if it feels like the grudge is justified. The city did belong to Israel but God was more than capable of restoring it to them if He pleased.

The grudge was to Ahab’s undoing and no one else’s.

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For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

1 Kings 22:1-4 (KJV) You Are Asking For It

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1 Kings 20:11 (KJV) Why We Should Never Quit

1 Kings 20:11 (KJV)
And the king of Israel answered and said, Tell him, Let not him that girdeth on his harness boast himself as he that putteth it off.

Ahab was far from a godly man but he nailed good counsel right here. There were too many variables for Benhadad to assume victory. Ahab was in no position to know God would deliver him but h was in a position to believe it was possible.

I see good application from two perspectives:
First, from Benhadad’s perspective
It is never wise for us to assume our own successes. What has been in the past may not be what is in our future. No matter how things look, our success is only possible with planning preparation, work and answered prayer.

Secondly from Ahab ‘s perspective
The context leads me to believe that Ahab saw himself as the underdog here. He was willing to pay Benhadad huge sums to keep away war. It was only when it became obvious that Benhadad had no interest in peace that Ahab thought of battle.

There will be times when all odds appear to be against us. But odds are not the only thing involved in victory. Continental soldiers during the American Revolution faced odds that were overwhelmingly against them but time and again forces fought on their side that could only have been supernatural. They won when there was no way they could have won.  The same can be the case for any one of us so the fact is that we ought never give up. I am not suggesting that we ignore obstacles but I do suggest that we press on despite them. You just don’t know whether God might have plans to remove your obstacles for you.

 

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For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

1 Kings 20:11 (KJV) Why We Should Never Quit

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