Matthew 27:46 – Forsaken

Matthew 27:46
And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?

-Jesus endured a punishment that no human body should ever endure; beatings, scourging, and ultimately crucifixion.  Things that simply cannot be fully explained by the words we use to describe them.  Yet nowhere in scripture do we find evidence of the Lord crying out until the moment His Father had forsaken Him- the same separation that awaits all of those who die without Christ.  Be not deceived, Hell is more than just fire and harsh treatment of the body (although those would certainly be bad enough), it is also the agony of living out eternity separated from God’s love and light.  “And I say unto you my friends, Be not afraid of them that kill the body, and after that have no more that they can do. But I will forewarn you whom ye shall fear: Fear him, which after he hath killed hath power to cast into hell; yea, I say unto you, Fear him.”  (Luke 12:4-5)


Acts 16:16-19 – Most High God

Acts 16:16-19
 And it came to pass, as we went to prayer, a certain damsel possessed with a spirit of divination met us, which brought her masters much gain by soothsaying:
17 The same followed Paul and us, and cried, saying, These men are the servants of the most high God, which shew unto us the way of salvation.
18 And this did she many days. But Paul, being grieved, turned and said to the spirit, I command thee in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her. And he came out the same hour.
19 And when her masters saw that the hope of their gains was gone, they caught Paul and Silas, and drew them into the marketplace unto the rulers,

-Has anybody ever been confused by this section of scripture?  Why would someone demon-possessed point to Paul and Silas as knowing the way of salvation?  It’s important to realize that the area of the world Paul and Silas are visiting is the very seat of pagan mythology.  A Jewish ear or a Christian ear would hear “Most High God,” (El-selyon) and identify that as the one true God of the Bible (Genesis 14:20). But to other cultures who worship many gods that are always ranked by power or prominence, there were many “highest gods”; the title has been attached to Zeus, Isis, and Baal- just to name a few. A pagan hearer might understand the term to refer to whatever deity he or she considered supreme.  This could possibly be part of the reason behind Paul’s rebuke of the woman.  What was true in the time of pagan gods is still very much an issue in our modern culture.  In an age where everyone is worshiping something and “god” means two different things to two different people, Satan doesn’t need to convince us that Jesus isn’t the way; he just needs to convince us that Jesus isn’t the only way.

Romans 9:20 – Asking and Questioning

Romans 9:20
 Nay but, O man, who art thou that repliest against God? Shall the thing formed say to him that formed it, Why hast thou made me thus?

Philippians 4:6-7
 Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.
7 And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

-Life’s many trials bring with them hard questions; questions that can be difficult to even speak much less demand an answer. While I would advise against questioning God, at the same time I would highly encourage you to take your questions to God.  God alone possesses the answers to all our questions and even in cases where He doesn’t share the answers for which we are looking, He is also the only one who can provide peace in the face of uncertainty.  The line between asking God and questioning God is small but infinitely important.  To question God is to doubt His power and ability; to ask God is too have faith that He is God, but at the same time recognize that our meager faith needs His special attention.


Genesis 19:5-11 – In The Grip of Sin

Genesis 19:5-11
 And they called unto Lot, and said unto him, Where are the men which came in to thee this night? bring them out unto us, that we may know them.
And Lot went out at the door unto them, and shut the door after him,
7 And said, I pray you, brethren, do not so wickedly.
Behold now, I have two daughters which have not known man; let me, I pray you, bring them out unto you, and do ye to them as is good in your eyes: only unto these men do nothing; for therefore came they under the shadow of my roof.
9 And they said, Stand back. And they said again, This one fellow came in to sojourn, and he will needs be a judge: now will we deal worse with thee, than with them. And they pressed sore upon the man, even Lot, and came near to break the door.
10 But the men put forth their hand, and pulled Lot into the house to them, and shut to the door.
11 And they smote the men that were at the door of the house with blindness, both small and great: so that they wearied themselves to find the door.

-While the Lord’s Angels visited with Lot on their journey to bring judgment to the city of Sodom, the men of Sodom came to Lot’s door with a well-placed example of why the Lord had seen fit to destroy the city.  This is a stark example of the power of sin which we should all take to heart.  Notice the reaction of the Sodomites in verse 11 when the Angels strike them with blindness; “they wearied themselves to find the door“!  You would think that being struck blind for your sin would be enough to make you rethink your decisions, but these men continued following their desire to get into Lot’s house.  What’s true for the sin in their lives is true for the sin in our lives; it we let it in, we may not be able to let it go no matter what it costs us.


2 Kings 6:8, 14-17 – Horses and Chariots of Fire

2 Kings 6:8, 14-17
 Then the king of Syria warred against Israel, and took counsel with his servants, saying, In such and such a place shall be my camp.
14 Therefore sent he thither horses, and chariots, and a great host: and they came by night, and compassed the city about.
15 And when the servant of the man of God was risen early, and gone forth, behold, an host compassed the city both with horses and chariots. And his servant said unto him, Alas, my master! how shall we do?
16 And he answered, Fear not: for they that be with us are more than they that be with them.
17 And Elisha prayed, and said, Lord, I pray thee, open his eyes, that he may see. And the Lord opened the eyes of the young man; and he saw: and, behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire round about Elisha.

-When Elisha’s servant looked around in verse 15, he saw that the Syrian forces had completely surrounded the city- evil was everywhere.  In fear, the servant cried out to Elisha for guidance.  What did Elisha do?  Did he instruct the servant to run and hide?  Did he tell the servant to figure out a way to make peace with the enemy?  No.  Elisha simply showed his servant that God was moving and that no matter how powerful the enemy seems God will always be more powerful.  Evil is everywhere these days and seems to be growing more powerful by the day.  Our course of action is the same now as it was in 2 Kings– don’t run from the enemy, don’t surrender to the enemy; look in God’s word and be reminded that “greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.” (1 John 4:4)


James 5:7-8 – Precious Fruit

James 5:7-8
 Be patient therefore, brethren, unto the coming of the Lord. Behold, the husbandman waiteth for the precious fruit of the earth, and hath long patience for it, until he receive the early and latter rain.
8 Be ye also patient; stablish your hearts: for the coming of the Lord draweth nigh.

-The world is bad and getting worse every day.  Why does the Lord allow it to continue?  The answer is given throughout scripture but is very beautifully worded here in James 5.  The Lord is waiting for the “precious fruit of the earth” (v7); that is, all of the souls who will be saved between now and when He does return.  If the Lord decided to return early, He would be cutting off that number of souls who would have gotten saved had He waited.  The faster God comes, the faster He must pass out judgment.  But God is not quick to pass out judgment.  He is “longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.” (2 Peter 3:9)  If you are saved today, pray for those souls still in danger of everlasting judgment.  If you are lost, why not make today the day you let go of everything and embrace Jesus.  It may be that you are the “precious fruit of the earth” for whom the Lord is waiting.


1 Corinthians 12:4-7 – Talent

1 Corinthians 12:4-7
 Now there are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit.
5 And there are differences of administrations, but the same Lord.
6 And there are diversities of operations, but it is the same God which worketh all in all.
But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal.

-Talent; we all have it in some form or another. Everyone’s talent is different but they are all equally special because they are all a gift from the Lord. What do you do with these special blessings? Do you utilize your talent in service to the Lord and dedicated to the furtherance of His will?  Do you pursue selfish, sinful desires with your talent? Maybe you don’t use it at all and instead shut it up inside to waste away. What a shame to waste something so precious.  What a shame to stand before the Lord in judgment and have to explain what you did (or didn’t do) with a gift that He saw fit to give you.


Matthew 4:6 – As It Is Written

Psalm 91:11-12
 For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways.
12 They shall bear thee up in their hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone.

Matthew 4:6
 And saith unto him, If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down: for it is written, He shall give his angels charge concerning thee: and in their hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone.

-Notice how Satan misrepresents Psalm 91 here while tempting Jesus.  By taking the verse out of context, the Devil tempts Jesus into tempting God the Father to “prove” Himself.  Jesus’ answer shows divine wisdom and His victory in this encounter goes without saying, for He is the Word of God.  But how would you or I do?  Satan has been studying the Bible a lot longer than any of us have.  He knows the Bible better than we do and he’s not afraid to use it as a tool to deceive us.  If Satan gave us a twisted verse of scripture, would we be able to see through it or would we be deceived.  Even if you can’t quote a Bible verse, do you have the discernment to take what you have heard and go study it yourself?  The wicked will certainly try to trick you, but even the righteous can lead you astray unintentionally.  The only sure word is the word you get directly from God and the only way you’ll get that is to make time to be in the Word of God.


Matthew 5:9 – Blessed Are The Peacemakers

Matthew 5:9
 Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.

-We live in a contentious society; the accepted principle for getting your way seems to be forcing someone else into submission.  Yet nowhere in scripture do I read where the Lord says “blessed are the war makers”.  The most combative people we meet in the course of a day may seem to get an early advantage, but are they really getting ahead?  If you believe Jesus, then they are absolutely not getting ahead and peace is the better way.  The next time you have a score to settle, forgive that person for Jesus’ sake instead (Ephesians 4:32); the next time you are certain you can win an argument, don’t bother.  Some people may be more receptive than others, but remember who Jesus said are blessed- the peacemakers.  Don’t wait for someone else to extend an olive branch, make peace happen.


Proverbs 2:10-11, 16-19 – Though He Fall…

Proverbs 2:10-11, 16-19
 When wisdom entereth into thine heart, and knowledge is pleasant unto thy soul;
11 Discretion shall preserve thee, understanding shall keep thee:
16 To deliver thee from the strange woman, even from the stranger which flattereth with her words;
17 Which forsaketh the guide of her youth, and forgetteth the covenant of her God.
18 For her house inclineth unto death, and her paths unto the dead.
19 None that go unto her return again, neither take they hold of the paths of life.

-The Bile teaches that “a just man falleth seven times, and riseth up again: but the wicked shall fall into mischief.” (Proverbs 24:16)  This tells me two things:  1) We are all going to fall; you may not want to and I may not either but it’s going to happen.  More than once.  2) If you fall is not nearly as important as where you fall.  The just and the wicked both fell in Proverbs 24, but only the just man got back up.  Why?  Because the wicked man had fallen into mischief and became “snared in the work of his own hands”. (Psalm 9:16) Like stepping on a bear trap in the woods, sin does more than trip you, it takes hold of you.  Consider Lot in Genesis 13:12; the Bible tells us that he “pitched his tent toward Sodom.”  He set his course towards iniquity and his eventual fall “vexed his righteous soul.”  (2 Peter 2:8)  Consider the “strange woman” here in Proverbs 2; “none that go unto her return again” because her house inclines toward death.  Now consider the one who leans on the Lord; “Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down: for the LORD upholdeth him with his hand.” (Psalm 37:24) Every day the Lord sets before us “life and good, and death and evil” (Deuteronomy 30:15).  Every choice we make will either steer us towards God or away from Him.  Before the next time we fall, we need to stop and ask one question; “which way am I leaning?”