THE GOD OF BOTH JEWS AND GENTILES
Today’s Reading: Romans 3
Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion on the right-hand side).
GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.
Key Verses: Romans 3:28 & 29
Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith apart from the law. Or is He the God of the Jews only? Is He not also the God of the Gentiles? Yes, of the Gentiles also…
Justification (a declaration of righteousness before God) by faith was the reason given for the Protestant Reformation. The story is that Martin Luther, a Roman Catholic Priest, travelled to Rome for the purpose of gaining favour with God and an inner assurance of his salvation. He probably visited the prison pictured above. It is reported that as he ascended a stairway into a church, step by step on his knees, reciting prayers on each step, he jumped to his feet, exclaiming the Scripture, “The just shall live by faith.” He returned to Germany where he nailed his declaration of salvation by faith, and not by the keeping of the law, to the the door of a church. As they say, “the rest is history.” What Luther and many others hoped would be a reformation in the church became a high wall of division. The action of the church courts, and unwise people on both sides of the issue, eventually produced different denominations. It could’ve been different. For example, Acts 15:1-11. Why was there not a new denomination or an independent church body formed in the first century? We may want to take time now to think about that question.
PRAYER FOR TODAY:
Lord Jesus, help me to always “hold the truth in love.” I pray You will enable me to be part of resolving strongly held differences as Peter was in Acts 15. I ask for greater wisdom. You promised that if I would ask You would give wisdom liberally (James 1:5). Amen!
100 PERSONAL WORDS:
Paul wrote his “epistle of joy,” Philippians, from prison. I can’t imagine myself having such an overcoming experience in Christ as to be able to rejoice so enthusiastically in similar circumstances. I do know that God does give grace to endure, but seldom in advance of the trial. He does so as we have need.
Concerning divisions in the church, Jesus prayed for all who profess to follow Him, “…that they all may be one” (John 17:20-23). I have seen the power in working together for winning people to Jesus. During the 1970’s and 1980’s, many walls came down between denominations. I was asked by the Archbishop Cardinal of Toronto to preach a mission in Varsity Stadium sponsored by the Roman Catholic Arch Diocese of Toronto. Literature on the assurance of salvation by faith was distributed to thousands as they responded to my Billy Graham-style invitation. There was a strong sense that Jesus’ John 17 prayer request was being answered by the Father with a loud “Yes.” I believe that God is more than willing to continue to say “Yes” to Jesus’ prayer. I pray for much more of God’s unconditional love to expand my capacity to love and to overflow my life with His message of salvation.
Yours for an answer to Jesus’ prayer, unhindered by pride in a denomination or by human self-righteousness,
P.S. My eldest son, David Reynold, and his wife Kathy, leave shortly for Uganda where their mission is to be a part of the answer to Jesus’ prayer for unity. Here’s a link describing their work. Please remember them in your prayers. Thank you so very much!
Not Down, But Through
“When Thou passest through the waters,”
Deep the waves may be and cold,
But Jehovah is our refuge,
And his promise is our hold;
For the Lord himself has said it,
He, the faithful God and true;
“When you come to the waters
You will not go down, but through.”
Seas of sorrow, Seas of trial,
Bitter anguish, fiercest pain,
Rolling surges of temptation
Sweeping over heart and brain…
They will never overflow us
For we know His work is true;
All His waves and all His billows
He will lead us safely through.
Threatening breakers of destruction,
Doubt’s insidious undertow,
Will not sink us, will not drag us
Out to ocean depths of woe;
For His promise will sustain us,
Praise the Lord, whose word is true!
We will not go down, or under,
For He says, “You will pass through.”
Annie Johnson Flint
When thou passest through the waters,
I will be with thee; and through the rivers,
they shall not overflow thee:
when thou walkest through the fire,
thou shalt not be burned;
neither shall the flame kindle upon thee.
For I am the LORD thy God,
the Holy One of Israel, thy Saviour…
Thank you. I have been going through a very difficult time of late and I was beginning to think God had left me because He was so disappointed in me. But this poem, just reminded me of the truth, which is He never leaves me. The last line really spoke to me, strengthen me and gave me hope for a better tomorrow. I don’t know why you felt compel to share this, but rest assure it helped me, so thank you so very much for posting it.
You are very welcome! God used my post to reassure you of His love for you, Donna–amen!! It came from ‘Streams in the Desert’ for January 6; one of the daily readings I do in the morning with the blog. I have the book but it can also be accessed on-line. ‘Echoes of Eternity’ (Hal M. Helms); ‘Daily Light’ (Bagster/Lotz); ‘My Utmost For His Highest’ (Oswald Chambers) and ‘God Calling’ (A. J. Russell, Editor) are the others I read to help boost me up and feel loved in the Spirit. I remember you mentioned before that Christmas is not the best time of year for you, which I also experience. Know your presence is missed on the blog and how much you are cared for, Donna. God bless you, dear sister-in-Christ!
Donna I add these sentiments from Beverlee and pray you will feel God’s love and ours.
Hi Donna. Here is a verse that was a real help to me when going through deep waters:
“Who is among you that fears the Lord? Who obeys the voice of His Servant? Who walks in darkness AND HAS NO LIGHT?
Let him TRUST in the Name of the Lord and RELY upon His God”. NKJV. The KJV says ” and STAY upon His God”. Isaiah 50:10.
I also found Psalm 18:1-1-6 KJV “The Lord is MY ROCK, MY FORTRESS, and MY DELIVERER; MY GOD, MY STRENGTH, IN WHOM I WILL TRUST….In my distress I called upon the Name of the Lord, and cried unto my God: he heard my voice..” “Who is worthy to be praised” (vs.3)
“When the storms of life are raging, STAND BY ME,
When the storms of life are raging,STAND BY ME,
When the Storms of life are raging, like a ship without a sail,
O LORD, STAND BY ME”
Psalm 34:1-8, esp vs.1-3
Thank you the encouragement Beverlee, Catherine and Samuel. Sometimes I am so familiar with Scriptures that I forget to believe them. I don’t know if that makes sense or not but it does to me, which is the point I think God was trying to make today with me.
Loved the study today and pics.
Here is the sweetest little girl telling the story of Jonah:
Praying for your son David and his wife.
How great it was to click the link for Reynold and Cathy in Uganda. We will add them to our daily prayers.
Thanks to Reynold for the excellent pictures which helped the 100words.ca blog come to life.
2012 Holy Land Yellow Bus.
God has been so close to me since my husband’s passing two days after Christmas this year. I have had problems pop up and I just ask God to help me and He does quickly. After the funeral I drove home alone and a song just started coming out of my mouth – “Nothing is Impossible When You Put Your Trust in God”, written by Rev. David E. Williams who passed away also a few weeks ago. He was the Minister of Music at The Peoples Church in Toronto. A former missionary had asked me if I could remember David’s song. At the time I didn’t know which one he was thinking of but, there on the way home, without TRYING to think of it, it just came. It is a difficult time trying to get all the legalities done alone but God is on my side! You should put that song title in a Google search. There are several groups singing it. We went to Peoples for 10 years before moving to another area and we attended The Church on the Queensway for 10 more years! What a privilege that was. God bless everyone in this VERY COLD Global Warming time!
Great song, Doreen! Amen!
Nothing Is Impossible
Nothing is impossible
when you put your trust in God;
Nothing is impossible
when you’re trusting in His Word.
Hearken to the voice of God to thee:
“Is there anything too hard for Me?”
Then put your trust in God alone
and rest upon His Word–
For ev’rything, O ev’rything,
Yes, ev’rything is possible with God!
(1) I read in the Bible the promise of God,
That nothing for Him is too hard;
Impossible things He has promised to do,
If we faithfully trust in His Word.
(2) The word of the Lord is an anchor secure,
When winds of uncertainty blow:
Though man in his weakness may falter and fail,
His Word will not fail us we know.
(3)All things are possible, this is His Word,
Receive it ‘tis written for you,
Believe in His promises, God cannot fail,
For what He has said He will do.
Luke 1:37 For with God nothing will be impossible.
I just wanted to comment on how much I appreciate this daily devotional. I have been following it now for a few years and it has done so much for my spiritual growth. I can’t put into words how much I value this devotional. I have two requests however. I would love if there was a “share” button I could push so I could share daily on Face Book your words with friends and family.
Another request, and I know it’s a big one, is to have an audio option of your daily blog that also incorporates the daily bible reading. I am a busy mom and often I listen to audio bible while cooking, cleaning, etc. I am too busy to sit and read but I sure can listen while I work! If I miss a day of your blog it’s often due to a hectic schedule and exhaustion. I am never too tired to listen to audio. : ) I have tried other devotionals and bible studies and I always come back to this one. God is so present in each days reading and I have had it happen multiple times where your words along with the days scripture reading touch me on such a deep level it’s indescribable. It’s like God was using you to speak directly to me. Thank you for this blog and may God continue to bless and guide you in your ministry.
Thank you for your comments and questions. At this point, the only way to share a blog posting on Facebook is to cut and paste the web address into your Facebook status post. As far as the audio Bible goes, you can click the link under the daily scripture reference where it says, “Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online” Then on the Biblegateway site, click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion on the right-hand side.
God bless you…
Doreen I will keep you in my prayers as well as Renold and Kathy in Uganda too.
Thank You Jesus that by Grace through faith in You I am set free to love, free to dance, free to laugh, free to rejoice, free to be with Our Father in Heaven, that You opened the door to freedom to be the me You created me to be in You and through You.
I praise and worship You Jesus my Lord and Saviour, my all in all, for without You I am nothing, but in You all things are possible. PRAISE YOUR HOLY NAME. Heavenly Father thank You, for Your Great Love….You gave Your Only begotten Son because of Your Great love!!! Thank You!! Thank You!! Thank You!!! AMEN and AMEN!!!
Thank You Holy Spirit for leading me on paths of righteousness for Your Name’ sake!!!
The picture of the prison both inside and out is spectacular Reynold!!!
Hard to imagine Paul and Silas singing praises in prison, although it was not this particular prison. But Paul writing to the “Philippians” while in this prison.
Rev. David thank you for the link to Reynold and Cathy’s ministry in Uganda. I pray for the Lord’s protection over them as they go. What a blessing they have been in bringing those ministers together that “We all may be One in Christ”!!
As always, this blog is a great way to come together in reading His Word as one in Him. Your expanding on it and your thoughts are greatly appreciated, thank you. And your faithfulness to be up so early each morning to give us this manna!!!
Amen to the message and all the blogs today. Will also pray for Reynold and Cathy and World Embrace. Have been blessed much by the songs posted and that sweet little Mary and the story of Jonah. I am going to call my grandniece and ask her to watch. I know she will love it as she has taken a real interest in the Bible. God bless everyone!
Thank you Lynda for that recital by Mary about Jonah