Tuesday, January 5, 2021

ROME

Today’s Reading: Romans 1-2

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).

 

The Roman Colosseum is the embodiment of both the grandeur and cruelty of the great Roman Empire. Capable of seating 50,000 spectators, the Colosseum hosted spectacular games that included gladiator exhibitions, fights between animals, prisoner executions and, strangely enough, naval battles. Untold thousands of humans and animals met their deaths within this popular attraction of ancient Rome.

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.

 

Key Verse: Romans 1:7

To all who are in Rome, beloved of God, called to be saints…

Today’s reading is a huge jump from Moses to Paul, Deuteronomy to Romans! The statistics prove that this two-year journey through the Bible, back and forth between the Old Testament and the New, is the most successful in actually completing a thorough reading…an excellent goal for this New Year!!! Please enlist your friends!!! Set a time to call a friend daily and compare notes…or post comments on the blogs. This can be the greatest Christian growth period ever!!!

Note the word “ALL” in the key verse…could it be that this would even include the Emperor? It would be almost 300 years yet before Emperor Constantine claimed himself to be a believer in Jesus. There was a great deal of work to do in the meantime. The Apostle Paul, writer of the book of Romans, begins here with the Jewish people who lived in Rome. It is believed that Paul wrote to the Romans in 56 A.D. from Corinth during his third missionary journey. It is not his first letter to the churches, but it is placed first because of its length and its vital importance to the understanding of salvation. Millions of people have followed “The Roman Road” to a personal faith in Jesus. The mileposts on the road are: (1) Romans 3:23 – “All have sinned.” Confess that we are sinners in need of the Saviour. (2) Romans 6:23 – “The gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Receive God’s gift by confessing that we have received Jesus into our lives. (3) Romans 10:9-10 – Believe that God raised Jesus from the dead, and tell someone that we have received Him, believed in Him, and that we now believe we have eternal life in Him.

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord Jesus, I am walking “The Roman Road” again today. I confess before You my faith in You, and I commit to You that I’ll seek an opportunity to confess You with my mouth. Keep me daily, I pray, in the centre of Your will and purpose for me as a believer. Amen!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

It is believed that for a person in a coma, hearing is the last sense to go. The person cannot confess with their mouth, and I’ve told several in a comatose state to think their confession. I’ve seen eye movement that I think may indicate they’ve done it. As well, I’ve sought to minister to stroke victims who can’t speak, and they’ve confessed by nodding their heads in answer to a direct yes or no question. Some totally deaf people may not be able to speak a clear confession with their mouths, but have no doubt about it, their expressions of joy and their body language tell the story of their faith. For me, the moment I confessed Jesus with my mouth, I knew I was right with God. Just to confirm that faith, the next day after I went forward at an evangelist’s call, this 16-year-old went to the creek behind the house where I was living, and over and over as I walked along, I repeated John 6:37 and prayed, “You said, Lord Jesus, that if I come to You, You would receive me. You cannot lie! I’ve come to You. I believe in You. I know that You have received me.” By repeating that several times, it finally got through to my mind, my spirit, my heart and my soul. I’ve never doubted my eternal salvation since that time 64 years ago. Hallelujah!

Yours for all who are in Rome (our key verse) and for all who are in Canada, (where I am right now), and for all who are in the places where this blog is being read (where you are),

David

P.S. This is a blog for busy people, but Romans is such a powerful teaching book that if time permits, I suggest reading each chapter twice rather slowly so as to let the message saturate our entire beings!!!

Monday, January 4, 2021

MORE BLESSINGS

Today’s Reading: Deuteronomy 33-34

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).

 

Here you can see what the breastplate would have looked like on the High Priest in Moses’ time. Each of the twelve tribes is represented before God by a precious stone. The Thummin and the Urim mentioned in today’s reading were there somewhere, but they remain mysterious objects of which we know very little. Perhaps they were instruments for testing God’s will such as casting lots (Deuteronomy 33:8).

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.

 

Key Verse: Deuteronomy 33:27a

The eternal God is your refuge,
And underneath are the everlasting arms…

 

Our reading begins with praise to God and then blessings on all the tribes except one, Simeon. In Genesis 49:5-7 both Simeon and Levi are cursed by their father, Jacob. All the other brothers are blessed. Moses and Aaron came from Levi, the tribe that became Israel’s priests. It remains a mystery why Levi was chosen for special service and Simeon was not. Perhaps Levi repented of the sins Jacob mentioned and Simeon did not. God always responds to a godly sorrow for sin, followed by a turning away from sin. Restoring our relationship with God is absolutely essential to experiencing the powerful promise found in our key verse. God blessed Moses. Jesus, Peter, James and John would later meet him on the Mount of Transfiguration (Matthew 17:1-8).

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, I search my heart, confess my sin, and trust You for the gift of genuine repentance. Levi became the recipient of Your blessings, and his brother, Simeon, did not. I’m desperate for Your everlasting arms under me. I lean on Your arms today and every day. Thank You for Your promise of strong support. In Jesus’ Name, Amen!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

Often over the years I have visited the modern expression of “The Promised Land”…Israel. Bible prophecy indicates the establishment of a nation state in the end times called “Israel.” The olive tree symbolizes the spiritual life of Israel; the fig tree symbolizes political Israel (Luke 21:29-31). I, as a Gentile believer in the King of the Jews, Jesus, have been grafted into the olive tree. Jews who believe in Jesus as Messiah, Saviour and Lord (there are thousands in Israel in many congregations) continue an expression of the original olive tree. Following the birth of Jesus’ Church (Acts 2), many thousands of Jews formed the first congregations of believers in Jesus. A non-Jew, Cornelius, was the first Gentile grafted into the olive tree (Acts 10). While modern Israel has come into being, let’s not forget that the modern state of Israel is not gathered in righteousness. For example, I’m told that in Israel abortion is legal and huge numbers of little ones are being torn apart in the wombs of Jewish mothers. Jesus’ last prophecy was about this (check out Luke 23:27-31). Let us never forget that God loves all people equally; Arabs and Jews all need to receive Jesus in order to be saved. We all need to come to Him and trust His promises (e.g. John 6:37). Tomorrow, God willing, I’ll do my blog from the book of Romans. I’ve just had a head-start by reading about the “olive tree.” It’s found in Romans 11:17-24 (click here to read with me).

Yours for God at work today with Jews, Arabs, and all the rest of us…and for the growth of the “olive tree” and its grafted-in branches, of which I believe I’m a little twig,

David

P.S. Yesterday I linked you to my Uncle’s book, Pebbles From The Brink, which gives the last words of the dying at a time before modern sedatives (If you missed it, here is the link again). Most people today are not conscious when they pass away. Many of the last sayings were from a time when believers, both Roman Catholic and Protestant, were persecuted and martyred by wicked leaders from both sides (e.g. Henry VIII). My Uncle featured Heaven and Hell statements from both sides of that great divide.  I hope we don’t automatically presume we are reading of only one side or the other. Below is a picture of my uncle, Rev. Manley C. Pritchard. He edited a weekly and also a monthly publication beginning approximately in 1910.

Sunday, January 3, 2021

CONSIDER THE YEARS

Today’s Reading: Deuteronomy 32

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).

 

An elderly man ponders Scripture while in the courtyard of the Western Wall next to the Temple Mount. He may be meditating on the words of Moses.

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.

 

Key Verse: Deuteronomy 32:7

Remember the days of old,
Consider the years of many generations.
Ask your father, and he will show you;
Your elders, and they will tell you…

 

The song of Moses, poetry in the Hebrew language, is a spectacular way to present his last words. We have no idea of the tune he sang. It was no doubt in the minor key. It’s a sad sounding melody. According to available information, the scale for the major key arrived at some point as a more joyous sound in early Christianity. What a dramatic impact Moses made with his message. Ever since, it has been impossible for Jewish people to forget Moses.

Our key verse tells sons and daughters, as well as the following generations, to “ask your father.” How should a father answer? Deuteronomy 32:6 gives fathers, and mothers too, their instructions…”Set your hearts!” In Matthew 12:34b Jesus is quoted as saying, “Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.” Let us fill our minds with God’s Word and meditate on it. It will surely soak down into the very core of our beings, and the right words will flow out when we speak.

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord Jesus, I pray that the Holy Spirit will continue to move the content of this two-year daily blog into my heart. May the thoughts expressed here faithfully communicate Your thoughts. Amen!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

During the Christmas and New Year’s celebrations, I’ve had wonderful opportunities to follow Moses’ instructions. I’ve preached a bit to my children, my grandchildren, and my great-grandchildren. I didn’t preach a long sermon. Often it was just a sentence or two. Like Moses, I even sang a verse or two of a song.

One of my heroes is my uncle, Rev. Manley Pritchard, 21 years older than his sister, my mother (see photo below). My father was away during WW2 years, and my uncle filled in as a father sometimes. I can remember stern warnings, as well as good stories from him. He would be 138 years old if he was still here with us. His words still sound in my memories. He compiled a book which, in my opinion, should be back in print. It’s called, Pebbles From The Brink — “the brink” being the shore of the river of death (here is a link to an online version of the book…click on the pages to turn the page). The last words of dying people are often startling. Of course, Uncle Manley also included in his book the last words of Jesus, which were, according to John, who was there, “It is finished” (John 19:30). As a 12-year-old boy, I heard my dying mother’s last word. She laboured to say my name, “David.” I went to her side, kissed her and said through my sobs, “Mother, I’ll meet you in Heaven.” My dad reminded me several times that I added the words, “I will, I will.” I know I can have this assurance because Jesus “FINISHED” the work He came to earth to accomplish. His Cross is the bridge from this side of the river of death to the shores of Heaven.

Yours for wisdom to find the right words to say to our loved ones,

David

P.S. My sister Willa recently came across the photo below of our mother as a young girl with her parents and siblings (taken around the turn of the century). Mother is the precious little girl in the front (born Norma Hazel Pritchard). The man in the back is my Uncle Manley, whom I referred to above.

IMG_20161228_1309168

Saturday, January 2, 2021

AN EXCITING FUTURE

Today’s Reading: Deuteronomy 31

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).

 

Children surround a mother as she tells of the past and shares wisdom. Moses said to gather the “little ones” that they may hear, learn and observe (Deuteronomy 31:12). These followers of Jesus encourage all who visit “The Nazareth Village” to follow Jesus too!

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.

 

Key Verse: Deuteronomy 31:23b

Be strong and of good courage; for you shall bring the Children of Israel into the land of which I swore to them, and I will be with you.

 

Twice Moses said the words of our key verse to Joshua. We need to speak words of encouragement to leaders…Happy birthday Moses! (verse 2). For a reluctant leader, you’ve done fairly well. Yes, you’ve had some failures, and for that reason you are not leading your people into the Promised Land. You were a war-time leader. The nations through which you led the former slaves were determined to destroy you, but with the help of God, you won many battles. Now it’s up to the new leader to win the war. Moses, you showed up on the Mount of Transfiguration to encourage Jesus as He faced death in the most decisive battle in human history (Matthew 17:1-8). Thank you, Moses, for your faithfulness to God’s call.

It’s interesting to note the words “God said” and “Moses said.” Believing in the verbal inspiration of Scripture means that we have an accurate account. It’s good history. It doesn’t mean that Moses always, without fail, said and did all that God wanted him to say and do. After all, he was a human leader. Jesus always got it right. He’s the Leader we seek to follow (check out John 8:25-29).

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Dear Jesus, You ALWAYS said and did what pleased Your Father. Like Moses, I’m very human. I confess I made mistakes in my leadership. Because of these errors in judgment, I’ve not entered into all of Your perfect plans for me and for those I have led. I’ve asked forgiveness and You have granted it. Now I pray that You’ll guide and direct the new leadership, and please give me the grace to encourage them more and more. Amen!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

I remember the old song, “Home On The Range.” Some of the words are, “…where seldom is heard a discouraging word.” I want so very much to be an encourager, particularly of our leadership in the Church, in missions and evangelism, yes, even in government, and specifically in the ministry that sponsors this blog, Crossroads Christian Communications Incorporated, both in Canada and in the USA. Crossroads has a worldwide vision for communicating the message of Jesus, both for people’s eternal salvation and also in obedience to Jesus, caring for those who need food, water, medical care, and in general all who need deliverance from evil. Click here to learn more about Crossroads.

Yours for encouraging God’s leaders. Let’s help them all to have the best year ever in God’s cause during this New Year!!!

David

Friday, January 1, 2021

THE POWER OF WORDS

Today’s Reading: Deuteronomy 29-30

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).

 

At Timna Park, 20 miles north of Eilat, a life-sized replica of the biblical Tabernacle has been constructed. While no original materials (e.g. gold, silver, bronze) have been used, the model is accurate in every other way based upon the biblical description. This “Holy Place” of the Tabernacle housed the golden lampstand, the altar of incense and table of showbread. The lampstand (menorah) was beaten and fashioned out of a single block of gold and had three branches coming out of each side of the central shaft. The seven lamps on top of the branches were likely round saucers with pinched rims which held the wick and olive oil.

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.

 

Key Verse: Deuteronomy 30:14-15

But the word is very near you, in your mouth and in your heart, that you may do it. See, I have set before you today life and good, death and evil…

 

HAPPY NEW YEAR to my blog friends…May God bless you in amazing ways in this New Year!!!

“Death and life are in the power of the tongue” (Proverbs 18:21). When God first called Moses to lead the Children of Israel out of slavery, Moses tried to avoid the task by telling God that he had problems speaking (check out Exodus 4:10-16). In our readings over the past few days, it’s obvious that after 40 years of leadership, Moses no longer had a problem speaking. Four times in today’s reading Moses stresses, “Keep the words of this covenant and do them, that you may prosper in all that you do” (Deuteronomy 29:9).

The Apostle Paul quotes our key verse in Romans 10:8 and then gives us some powerful words of assurance of our eternal salvation. Romans 10:8-15 tells us that when we speak our faith in Jesus, who is Himself “the Word of God,” we truly have “life and good.” Amen!

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, thank You for the gift of speaking. Please grant that we will never speak “death and evil” by gossip, slander, half truths, and other destructive words. May my words always speak life and good in this New Year. I pray In the Name of the One whose words are most powerful, Jesus Christ our Lord and Saviour, Amen!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

In Grade 10 high school I was given a book of words. The title on the cover was “WORDS ARE IMPORTANT.” The student sitting next to me changed the title to read, “WORDS AREN’T IMPORTANT.” Learning new words every day was truly important, I discovered. When God made it clear to me that my vocation (calling) was to become an ordained minister of Christ, I realized that a large part of carrying out my responsibilities was my use of words. Words are my trade, my means of communicating God’s message to precious people. One of the greatest communicators during the 20th century was Malcolm Muggeridge. On the BBC, he debated such people as Bertrand Russell, the noted agnostic. In my opinion, Muggeridge won the debates. He and his wife Kitty appeared on 100 Huntley Street to give their witness for Christ. He also was our narrator for The Scroll, a musical masterpiece composed by Bruce Stacey, which was the centrepiece of our Crossroads sponsored pavilions at several World Expos. The epitaph on Muggeridge’s tombstone reads, “HE USED WORDS WELL.”

David

P.S.

“WOW! It’s a New Year! On New Years eve I was presented with Superman pyjamas. Ron took my picture and his son Adam doctored it. God promises that if we wait on Him, among other things, we will mount up on wings as eagles.

Having fun with a Christmas gift from Norma-Jean…Superman onesie PJ’s!

 

Thursday, December 31, 2020

BLESSINGS

Today’s Reading: Deuteronomy 28

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).

 

Looking east toward Masada, the dead remains of a tree and the cracked earth depicts the harshness of this desert area. This picture represents the world without the water of life. We choose “LIFE!” Jesus is the “LIVING WATER!” Jesus said to the woman at the well, “If you only knew the gift God has for you, and who you are speaking to, you would ask Me, and I would give you LIVING WATER!” At least twice in every daily 100 Huntley Street telecast, dry and thirsty souls are invited to come to Jesus and drink of Him. “LIVING WATER” is offered because people who love people give generously and sacrificially to bring JESUS’ LIVING WATER TO WHERE THE PEOPLE ARE!!!

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.

 

Key Verse: Deuteronomy 28:2

And all these blessings shall come upon you and overtake you, because you obey the voice of the Lord your God…

 

In verse one of today’s reading, Moses makes it clear that he does not refer to all the previous rules and regulations he has given the people, but only that which he states “today.” In chapters 26 and 27, he repeats the word “today” four times. These chapters were all one message. In our readings to come, we’ll see why Israel brought blessings and curses upon themselves. There are 68 verses in Deuteronomy 28; only the first 14 have to do with blessings, 54 are about curses. What does that emphasis say to us? Obedience to God brings blessings, and disobedience brings curses. This is the principle of “sowing and reaping.” The Apostle Paul, inspired by the Holy Spirit, wrote in Galatians 6:7, “Do not be deceived; God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap.” Let us remember always that every action has a consequence. Blessings “overtake” us, and so do curses. This is one of Moses’ final messages to all Israel. We may want to pay close attention.

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Overtake me, Lord God, with Your blessings. Please give me the grace of obedience to these final commands given by Moses. Help me to know the difference between right and wrong and to always do what is right. Lord Jesus, You gave a prayer which made a sinful man right in God’s sight. I pray that prayer now… “God, be merciful to me, a sinner.” Amen! (check out Luke 18:9-14).

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

I remember when Rev. Don Osbourne told our staff chapel that while battling a serious illness he had dreamed of a highway with two cars travelling on it. The first car had written on its side the word “understanding.” The second car was marked “peace.” The “peace” car was seen to “overtake” and pass the first. Don realized that God was confirming to him that the peace which comes from God overtakes and surpasses our understanding (see Philippians 4:6-7). God gave peace to Don in the midst of illness and proceeded to heal him shortly thereafter. I have been so very blessed by people God has sent to work with me through the years. I have truly been overtaken by blessings!!!

Yours for God’s blessings,

David

P.S. There is still time to send the Crossroads ministry a year-end offering in an envelope and have it postmarked by December 31, or you could still call with credit card in hand 1-800-265-3100 and give your best final offering to the Lord’s work for this year. The address to write on your envelope is Crossroads, Box 5100, Burlington, ON, L7R 4M2. Or you can click HERE and donate online. As Founder of this Ministry, I personally ask you to help me, this 80-year-old unworthy Pastor/Evangelist, by sending to Crossroads an over-the-top offering. I LOVE YOU! The Vision continues regardless of when Jesus calls me from this life to the next.

Wednesday, December 30, 2020

AMEN!

Today’s Reading: Deuteronomy 27

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).

 

This plaque is on the door of the oldest Protestant church in Israel, Christ Church. The church is situated just inside the Jaffa Gate of the Old City of Jerusalem. The plaque is written in Hebrew, Arabic and English. Jerusalem is the only city mentioned in the Bible for which we are specifically urged to pray. But what about your city and my city? Let’s pray fervently for our neighbours to come to know Christ. Pray that the soul-winning ministry of 100 Huntley Street will be more and more effective as we give to keep the ministry strong.

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.

 

Key Verse: Deuteronomy 27:26

Cursed is the one who does not confirm all the words of this law by observing them. And all the people shall say, “Amen!”

 

It is understood that the laws to be written on the stones erected after crossing into the Promised Land were only those found here in Deuteronomy 27. To write all the laws of Moses in this way would be impossible. Whitewashing the stones and then writing on them, possibly with charcoal, would not be permanent as would engraving in the stones, as was the case with the Ten Commandments. Jesus gave us two laws which sum up all the Law. First, love God, and second, love our neighbour as ourselves (Luke 10:27). When the young man came to Jesus to ask about eternal life (Matthew 19:16-22), Jesus said, “Keep the commandments.” The youth replied, “Which ones?” Jesus gave only six and then went directly to the heart of the young man. Jesus said, “Sell what you have and give to the poor.” This revealed what was written on his heart. What commandments are written, not on tablets of stone, but on our hearts? (2 Corinthians 3:3). Let’s meditate on this throughout today. Amen!

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, write on my heart Your Word, I pray. Grant me the grace to love You more, and to express this love by also loving my neighbour more. In Jesus’ Name I ask these mercies. Amen!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

Throughout my childhood, I thought I understood that unless I kept certain rules, I was not going to Heaven when I died. By the time I was 15, I had given up on keeping the rules. Then at 16, in June of 1953, in a high school auditorium, I went forward at the invitation of an Evangelist. An older man opened his Bible and asked me to read John 6:37. I read the words of Jesus, “Him that comes to Me I will in no way cast out.” The man said, “You’ve come to Jesus, right?” I answered, “Yes.” Then the man said, “What does Jesus do when you come to Him?” I answered, “He receives me!” Instantly, I knew that my salvation was not about keeping certain rules, but about believing that Jesus would not lie, and that His Word is true. At that moment, I was transformed; I became a new creation; I was born into a new life in Jesus! I’ve just paused to sing the song, “Tell Me the Story of Jesus, Write on My Heart Every Word” (click here to sing along). My heart is filled with joy.

Yours for our hearts to be filled with Jesus!

David

P.S. I will be forever grateful that someone paid for the gasoline and gave me a ride from Pembroke, Ontario, to Ottawa (100 miles) the night I was saved. Lots of people gave in the offering that night to pay to rent the auditorium and to pay the cost to bring Evangelist Jack Wrytzen from New York City to Canada. Years later, Syd Healey, my boss at the garage where I worked part time while I was in high school, gave the first offering of $300.00 to start the Crossroads television ministry in 1962.

Tuesday, December 29, 2020

A HOLY PEOPLE

Today’s Reading: Deuteronomy 25-26

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).

 

People praying at the rock in the Garden of Gethsemane where Jesus prayed all night before he was arrested. The church that now covers it is called the Church of All Nations.

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.

 

Key Verse: Deuteronomy 26:19

…and that He will set you high above all nations which He has made, in praise, in name, and in honor, and that you may be a holy people to the Lord your God, just as He has spoken.

 

We are a “holy people.” Believing in Jesus and following Him makes this a fact. Ephesians 2:21 calls us, “a holy temple.” To see how special we are in God’s eyes, read Ephesians 2:11-22.

Two practices stand out in today’s reading. First, the sandal and the kinsman redeemer. Note Deuteronomy 25:9 and then turn to a wonderful love story, Ruth chapter 4. Note verse 7 (click here). Second, paying the tithe, 10% of our increase. To read more about this practice, we may want to read Malachi 3:6-12. This last book in the Hebrew Scriptures has much to say about giving. The Greek Scriptures, our New Testament, speaks of giving in many places. The one that comes to mind is 1 Corinthians 16:2, where Paul encourages us to set aside our offerings on the first day of each week. It seems that the early believers in Jesus paid the tithe (they were all Jews) and then did much more in offerings above their tithe. Remember the words of Jesus to the rich young ruler. Jesus was asking for his all (Mark 10:17-22). Our question should not be, “How much should I give?” but, “How much of that which You, Lord, have given me should I use for myself?” Let’s meditate on that thought.

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, please give me the grace of disciplined consistency in listening to You as I read Your Word each day and in faithful fervency as I talk with You in my prayer time. May I see spiritual input in my life to be even more important than physical food and drink. In Jesus’ Name I pray, Amen!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

Because of the practice of giving produce to God, I asked my son, Reynold, for a garden picture. The Garden of Gethsemane was the place where Jesus gave everything back to His Father.

I find it interesting that throughout this present age, the age of the Church, a wide variety of giving practices has been employed. For example, my Father, Rev. Dr. Roy Mainse, in his ordination commitments, was not to own property personally. He was 40 when I was born in 1936, and he wrote that while his brothers received an inheritance, such as the family farm, he would not receive an inheritance. He was in the ministry (Methodist/Holiness Movement) and his needs were provided by the congregations, college, and missionary society which he served. During my time as a boy living at home, the residence, complete with old furniture from the 19th century, was provided. I remember the red-letter day when Dad came home with a new fridge. We actually owned it. Things changed along the way, and Dad and my step-mother owned a home when Dad retired. He passed away 42 years ago next month. I’m older now than he was when God took him home. He was removing the snow from his driveway and steps when his heart simply stopped. My memories of his total dedication to the cause of Christ are a motivation for me in my service to God and people.

Yours for learning how to give back to God that which He has given me,

David

Monday, December 28, 2020

DON’T DELAY!

Today’s Reading: Deuteronomy 23-24

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).

 

A mill stone found in Capernaum. Today’s reading points out the absolute essential nature of the top and bottom stones in the preparation of food for survival.

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.

 

Key Verse: Deuteronomy 23:21

When you make a vow to the Lord your God, you shall not delay to pay it; for the Lord your God will surely require it of you, and it would be sin to you.

 

Family life, societal life, personal and corporate health practices, financial matters, justice issues, and care for the poor are all covered in our reading. We might do well to follow some of these instructions today. For example, as the photograph illustrates, there are upper and lower millstones needed to grind wheat, corn, etc. The creditor is not to deprive the miller of his means of income (Deuteronomy 24:6). What if we followed the instructions here for a honeymoon lasting a full year (Deuteronomy 24:5)? This practice is recommended to bring happiness to a new wife. Interest-free loans and not entering someone’s home to repossess borrowed items are all good ideas. And our key verse is so important. An unpaid pledge is serious business. It is a betrayal of our word. The old saying is, “Our word is our bond.” Then there is the last verse of our reading and the word “remember.”

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, please bring to my remembrance those experiences from the past that I need to think about. May I have grace to learn from my mistakes and from my successes also. May I also learn from the experiences of the Children of Israel. In Jesus’ Name, Amen!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

I well remember the occasion when Norma-Jean and I made a pledge to the building fund of Bethel Church in Hamilton, Ontario. I had been Pastor there several years before, and when I went full time as an itinerant Evangelist, Norma-Jean and the children continued to participate in the life of that congregation. It was time, by vote of the people and the leadership of the Pastor, to build a new church building. Our pledge was a significant amount. Our date for paying up, Dec. 31, 1976, came and went and I had not paid the pledge. At the same time, our house was for sale, as we knew we must move to Toronto in order to facilitate the move from the weekly Crossroads and Circle Square telecasts to daily live television. But it was not selling. Finally, in desperation, my wife and I went to the bank, borrowed the money, and made an appointment to visit the Pastor to present our cheque, almost two months late. As far as we can calculate, unknown to us, at the very time I laid the cheque on the Pastor’s desk, Ray Edwards, our realtor, closed the deal to sell our house. I don’t believe the timing was accidental. I learned that God takes pledges very seriously.

Yours for financial integrity,

David

P.S. A year end is here again, and while Norma-Jean and I don’t have any unpaid pledges, we want to give sacrificially to help Crossroads Christian Communications with a year end gift. Here’s my question to all my blog partners. Will you join Norma-Jean and me in giving a much-needed extra year end gift to Crossroads? Your cheque must be dated and your envelope post marked before midnight December 31st or you can give online by clicking HERE…or call toll free 1-800-265-3100 with credit card in hand. God bless you with His loving care. David and Norma-Jean.

Sunday, December 27, 2020

HE WAS CURSED, WE ARE BLESSED

Today’s Reading: Deuteronomy 21-22

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).

 

Two men, along with many others, present their prayers at the Western Wall in Jerusalem. This is the retaining wall for the Temple in Jerusalem. Jesus would have worshipped in the Temple courtyard just above and to the east. This is the closest Jews today can come to the actual Temple site. This is the reason the Wailing Wall is another name for this Herodian structure. Orthodox Jews consider themselves to be in mourning ever since the destruction of the Temple in 70 A.D.

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.

 

Key Verse: Deuteronomy 22:4

You shall not see your brother’s donkey or his ox fall down along the road, and hide yourself from them; you shall surely help him lift them up again.

 

When accused by religious Jews of breaking the laws of the Sabbath by healing a man, Jesus referenced our key verse and exposed their double standard by reminding them that they would indeed pull their animal out of the ditch on the Sabbath (Luke 14:1-6). If we want to discover what Jesus thought of the efforts to keep all the Mosaic laws, read the entire 23rd chapter of Matthew (click here). We might also consider Deuteronomy 21:22b & 23b where our reading points us forward to the One who hung on a tree. It may be valuable for us to read Galatians 3:10-14. Jesus was executed in the worst possible way. Not only did He endure the tortures of the Cross, He also carried the stigma of being “accursed.” The people observing knew well that anyone hanged on a tree is accursed of God. Jesus took on Himself the curse imposed on the human race because of the sin of our first parents. By faith, and because of Jesus, we are not cursed; we are truly blessed.

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, as I’ve just read from Matthew 23 and Galatians 3, I realize more than ever how blessed I am. Please help me to never take Your blessings for granted, presuming on Your grace by doing those things which I know have resulted from the “curse.” You forgive my sins and You also give me the grace to stop sinning. Thank You, Jesus! Amen!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

An old friend and mentor, the late Rev. J. H. Blair, walked the final steps with the last man hanged for murder in the Barton Street Jail in Hamilton, Ontario. In 1953, Harry Lee was hanged for the crime of first-degree murder. Pastor Blair told me that this man repented before God for all of his sins while maintaining that he was innocent of murder right to the end. I believe I will see Harry Lee in Heaven. The Scripture says that “Whosoever shall call on the Name of the Lord shall be saved.”  I am on a one-way street to eternity. There are no U-turns. Over 1,000 people call the Crossroads/100 Huntley Street prayer lines every day. Many calls are about getting right with God. Kind, loving, non-judgmental people are waiting for those calls. The toll-free number is 1-866-273-4444.

Yours for knowing the salvation for which Jesus hung on a tree,

David