A verse to quiet gossip

When someone starts to share gossip with me I always ask if they have read 1 Thessalonians 4:11 lately?

If they say no, I tell them to look it up and come back and finish what they were saying.

Just for interest sake 1 Thessalonians 4:11 says, “Make it your goal to live a quiet life, minding your own business and working with your hands, just as we instructed you before.”

Most people don’t come back and finish telling their story. Wonder why?

God Bless,

Listen and gather

Three verses from Proverbs 18 gives us some good advice on listening and gathering all the information before we make decisions or make comments about news.

13 Spouting off before listening to the facts is both shameful and foolish.

15 Intelligent people are always ready to learn. Their ears are open for knowledge.

17 The first to speak in court sounds right— until the cross-examination begins.

The notes in my Life Application Study Bible put it simply…

In these concise statements, there are three basic principles for making sound decisions:

(1) Get the facts before making any decision;

(2) be open to new ideas;

(3) make sure you hear both sides of any story before judging.

All three principles center around seeking additional information. This is difficult work, but the only alternative is prejudice—judging before getting the facts.

In any area of our lives it is important to listen and get all the facts before making a decision or passing on the information to others.

Getting all the facts is especially important for us as Christians as we often share what we hear online or in the news and make comment.

So listen, do your research, check all the facts and then ask God if you need to share it or make a comment online.

God Bless,

Enoch and Elijah taken to heaven directly

I love reading the stories of how Enoch and Elijah were taken up to heaven. These two mighty men walked with God so closely that they did not taste death.

Oh to have a walk with God like that. To be found living such a heavenly life that heaven was just opened and you were taken in.

Today I want you to be inspired afresh by reading their stories. I hope it gives you the desire to walk closer with the Lord today…

“After the birth of Methuselah, Enoch lived in close fellowship with God for another 300 years, and he had other sons and daughters. walking in close fellowship with God. Then one day he disappeared, because God took him.”
‭‭Genesis‬ ‭5:22, 24‬ ‭NLT‬‬

“It was by faith that Enoch was taken up to heaven without dying—“he disappeared, because God took him.” For before he was taken up, he was known as a person who pleased God.”
‭‭Hebrews‬ ‭11:5‬ ‭NLT‬‬

“When the LORD was about to take Elijah up to heaven in a whirlwind, Elijah and Elisha were traveling from Gilgal. And Elijah said to Elisha, “Stay here, for the LORD has told me to go to Bethel.” But Elisha replied, “As surely as the LORD lives and you yourself live, I will never leave you!” So they went down together to Bethel. The group of prophets from Bethel came to Elisha and asked him, “Did you know that the LORD is going to take your master away from you today?” “Of course I know,” Elisha answered. “But be quiet about it.” Then Elijah said to Elisha, “Stay here, for the LORD has told me to go to Jericho.” But Elisha replied again, “As surely as the LORD lives and you yourself live, I will never leave you.” So they went on together to Jericho. Then the group of prophets from Jericho came to Elisha and asked him, “Did you know that the LORD is going to take your master away from you today?” “Of course I know,” Elisha answered. “But be quiet about it.” Then Elijah said to Elisha, “Stay here, for the LORD has told me to go to the Jordan River.” But again Elisha replied, “As surely as the LORD lives and you yourself live, I will never leave you.” So they went on together. Fifty men from the group of prophets also went and watched from a distance as Elijah and Elisha stopped beside the Jordan River. Then Elijah folded his cloak together and struck the water with it. The river divided, and the two of them went across on dry ground! When they came to the other side, Elijah said to Elisha, “Tell me what I can do for you before I am taken away.” And Elisha replied, “Please let me inherit a double share of your spirit and become your successor.” “You have asked a difficult thing,” Elijah replied. “If you see me when I am taken from you, then you will get your request. But if not, then you won’t.” As they were walking along and talking, suddenly a chariot of fire appeared, drawn by horses of fire. It drove between the two men, separating them, and Elijah was carried by a whirlwind into heaven. Elisha saw it and cried out, “My father! My father! I see the chariots and charioteers of Israel!” And as they disappeared from sight, Elisha tore his clothes in distress.”
‭‭2 Kings‬ ‭2:1-12‬ ‭NLT‬‬

Four significant events at Jesus’death

I was re-reading the Death of Jesus this morning for my devotions. I read from Matthew 27.

In it there were four significant events that took place after He died. They are found in verses 45-56. We see they were…

1. Unexplained darkness fell over the earth for three hours in the middle of the day.

2. The curtain in the Temple was torn in two from top to bottom. This signified that all people could approach God without a Priest.

3. There was a major earthquake that shook the region.

4. Graves opened and the godly people were raised to life and started walking around the city.

Any one of these amazing events would have been significant, but put them all together and it is miraculous.

The death of Jesus was a significant event and everyone in Jerusalem would have known something major was taking place.

Three days later something even more significant happened too… but that is tomorrows devotion for me!

God Bless,

Listening and spiritual growth

There are a number factors to spiritual growth, but one is pretty important. Let us have a look at Hebrews 5:11-14…

11 There is much more we would like to say about this, but it is difficult to explain, especially since you are spiritually dull and don’t seem to listen. 12 You have been believers so long now that you ought to be teaching others. Instead, you need someone to teach you again the basic things about God’s word. You are like babies who need milk and cannot eat solid food. 13 For someone who lives on milk is still an infant and doesn’t know how to do what is right. 14 Solid food is for those who are mature, who through training have the skill to recognize the difference between right and wrong.

One key for spiritual growth is contained in verse 11 – listening.

Often we talk too much and don’t leave space to hear or we are listening to the wrong things.

We need to listen to God when we pray, we need to listen to the words of the Bible as we read and we need to listen to those around who are mature in the faith.

If you want to grow in your faith and move on to solid food (v14), then listen more.

God Bless,

The full 10 Commandments

As a part of my Bible reading plan I had to read the Ten Commandments this morning. I found it refreshing to re-read the whole section as often we quote only the 10 main dot points.

It gives a fuller meaning when we read it in its entirety rather than just what fits on a bookmark. I have pasted them below and highlighted the parts we memorise. Enjoy…

Exo 20:1 Then God gave the people all these instructions:
Exo 20:2 “I am the LORD your God, who rescued you from the land of Egypt, the place of your slavery.
Exo 20:3 “You must not have any other god but Me.
Exo 20:4 “You must not make for yourself an idol of any kind or an image of anything in the heavens or on the earth or in the sea.
Exo 20:5 You must not bow down to them or worship them, for I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God who will not tolerate your affection for any other gods. I lay the sins of the parents upon their children; the entire family is affected—even children in the third and fourth generations of those who reject Me.
Exo 20:6 But I lavish unfailing love for a thousand generations on those who love Me and obey My commands.
Exo 20:7 “You must not misuse the name of the LORD your God. The LORD will not let you go unpunished if you misuse His name.
Exo 20:8 “Remember to observe the Sabbath day by keeping it holy.
Exo 20:9 You have six days each week for your ordinary work,
Exo 20:10 but the seventh day is a Sabbath day of rest dedicated to the LORD your God. On that day no one in your household may do any work. This includes you, your sons and daughters, your male and female servants, your livestock, and any foreigners living among you.
Exo 20:11 For in six days the LORD made the heavens, the earth, the sea, and everything in them; but on the seventh day He rested. That is why the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and set it apart as holy.
Exo 20:12 “Honor your father and mother. Then you will live a long, full life in the land the LORD your God is giving you.
Exo 20:13 “You must not murder.
Exo 20:14 “You must not commit adultery.
Exo 20:15 “You must not steal.
Exo 20:16 “You must not testify falsely against your neighbor.
Exo 20:17 “You must not covet your neighbor’s house. You must not covet your neighbor’s wife, male or female servant, ox or donkey, or anything else that belongs to your neighbor.”