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In Every Thing


“Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God,” Philippians 4:6.

One important lesson a mature Christian learns is that no problem or situation is too small to take to the Lord in prayer. Albert Barnes states, “There is nothing which pertains to body, mind, estate, friends, conflicts, losses, trials, hopes and fears, in reference to which we may not go and spread it all out before the Lord.”  We take time to pray for great needs or answers to serious situations but suppose we start our day with prayer that does not end until we conclude it with amen before we close our eyes at night. Throughout the day we keep the prayer line open to Heaven which includes an attitude and words of thankfulness toward God for His graciousness.
We, however, often let other things steal our time and attention toward God. Praying to God makes us keenly aware of His hand on every aspect of our lives. What if, before we take a step toward the door, we take the time to whisper a prayer of thankfulness for safety, for guidance over our thoughts and intentions and for others. “Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints” (Eph. 6:18).

REFLECTION
Prayer is a free benefit of a gracious God; do not waste another day without using it.
Beverly Barnett

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The Kind of Christian I Am!


 

IT’S STILL ALL ABOUT ME!

 

Author - William Andrew Dillard

 

The Kind of Christian I Am!
Some folks believe that trusting Jesus, and becoming His disciple is surrendering life and its potential to a static life of religion. Oh, how the devil delights in spreading that lie! The truth is that in Christ, nothing is lost but the condemnation of sin, and the new life in Him is continuous gain upon gain. Joyfully, in Christ, life is still all about me, but in a much better way! Think with me about this.
Why did God leave heaven and become a man? It was to fulfill the types and promises of the Old Testament, and to pay the penalty of sins on behalf of mankind. He did this for me! You see, it really is all about me!
Why did He provide an everlasting salvation for all who repent of sins and trust Him as the personal Savior, especially me? Oh, yes, it is all about me!
Why did He create the living organism known as His body, the church? He did it that I might learn of Him, grow in grace and knowledge. Yes, it is all about me!
Did He not promise His dear children new life, and a new, incorruptible body, even me? Oh, yes! It is about me!
Does He not give us the opportunity to mature in the faith once delivered to the saints? Will that not qualify us to rule and reign with Him in the age that is about to happen? Does this include me? Indeed! It is all about me!
He will show me how an entire universe may be destroyed and return to the unseen state? I will see how creation is done. Because once resurrected I will ever be with the Lord, I will have a bird’s eye view of the creation of new heavens and a new earth! Hallelujah, it is all about me!
Who then will get to live in the New Jerusalem on the new earth, but his disciples of every age? That includes me! It is indeed all about me! Who then has the joy of studying, praying, coalescing the rightly divided Word that takes one from mountaintop to mountaintop? Among others, it is I! Thank the Lord it really is about me!
Dear reader this is for you, too, because of God’s love. I claim all these blessings for myself within the constraints of the Blessed Word of God because that is the kind of Christian I am!

 

 

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YE ARE THE “WHAT?” OF THE WORLD???


 

William Andrew Dillard

 
The Kind of Christian I Am!
Jesus said, “Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid.” Matthew 5:14. Matthew 5:1-2 makes it clear that this statement is made to His disciples rather than to the multitudes from whom he had retreated. Think with me about what this means!
The idea of this statement being made to a group instead of to an individual is reinforced by the comparison to a city set on an hill. Moreover, here is something beautiful about the King James Version of the Bible. Some folks don’t like the archaic English, but the translation is distinctly true to the original Greek by distinguishing singular from plural and nominative from objective case in the second person. “Ye” and “you” are plural, the first nominative and the other objective in grammatical case. So what we have here is Jesus referring to a singular group as plural, “ye,” in the nominative form. Hence, it is understood that this reference is to His church which this group of saved, baptized disciples were. So, it is His church, the pillar and ground of the truth; the fullness of Him that filleth all in all that is the light of the world, and as a city set on an hill that cannot be hidden.
The individuals that make up the church are addressed in the following two verses. Men do not light a candle and put it under a bushel, but in the candlestick that the benefit of light may be realized. The candlestick is presented in the Bible as a type or symbol of the church.
Furthermore, such lighted candles are to let their light shine before men. This accomplishes two things: men will behold (be influenced) by that light, and it will glorify the Heavenly Father. The terminology in verse 16 is “Let your light so shine before men…” Here the second person “your” is plural indicating a direct address to everyone who are numbered in the group or church.
“Light and darkness,” indicating opposite states are also used to indicate knowledge as opposed to ignorance, and righteousness as opposed to evil. These latter things are what Jesus referenced.
Make no mistake about it. Men become aware quickly of one who is faithful to the Lord’s church, and who lives in accord with the teachings of Christ Jesus. They also note quickly those who “say but do not do,” and categorize them as hypocrites. This fails to dispel the darkness, and to glorify the Heavenly Father.
The Psalmist David declared, “Let the redeemed of the Lord say so….” Psalm 107:2. Redeemed folks should be happy folks. Redeemed folks should jump at every chance to glorify God by relating what He has done for them in providing eternal salvation, and an acceptable avenue of service. If they do this, they will be letting their light shine! I firmly believe every true Christian should be such a light in this darkened world. That is the kind of Christian I am!

 

 

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January 4, 2014 Dose of Reality by Joseph Harris Number 314


 

 

I appreciate the wit and wisdom of Bro. Harris. He is a wordsmith.
                                                            
Comments on Current Events in Government, Religion, Culture, and the Family, from a Conservative Biblical Perspective


  

      

 

Are You a Thermostat or a Thermometer?

In almost every modern home, there is a little box on a wall called a thermostat. It controls the climate in the house. Also contained in that box is a thermometer, which measures the temperature inside the house. The thermostat responds to the temperature of the thermometer, based on its setting and will turn the heating/cooling unit on or off depending on the setting. One measures, one makes a difference.

Are you a thermostat or a thermometer? A lot of Christians are nothing more than a thermometer. They take on the temperature of their environment. At church, they are holy, kind, patient and considerate. Away from the church crowd, they are rude, crude, impatient and act like their worldly environment. They do nothing more than reflect and emulate their environment.

Thermostat Christians make a change in the temperature of their environment. When backbiting begins, they refrain and instead use edifying words. When confronted in anger, they answer softly and not in wrath for “The wrath of man worketh not the righteousness of God”, according to Brother James. They are not affected by the cold or the heat. They walk to the beat of the Holy Spirit, since they are filled with Him and they make a difference in their environment.

When Peter stood by the fire warming himself, as Jesus was being tried illegally, he took on the climate of the world. When confronted with his identity and association with Jesus, he lied, then swore. Peter reflected the temperature of the world. He was a thermometer.

When Demas forsook Paul and loved this present world, he was a thermometer and of no use to Paul or God. The Macedonian believers, however, became a thermostat and made a difference and along with Paul, became “ensamples to all that believe in Macedonia and Achaia” (I Thess. 1:7) and they also became a thermometer as they took on the climate of Paul and God, “And ye became followers of us, and of the Lord…” (I Thess. 1:6).

Three well known thermostats in the Bible were the Hebrews in Daniel who would not bow to the king. When everyone else was doing it, they absolutely refused to bow to a man made image. They were so locked in to God that they vowed to not bow whether, God preserved them or not. The issue for them was not deliverance, but integrity.

Oh God give us some thermostat Christians who will stop reflecting the temperature of this world and its filth, and who are more concerned about pleasing the Holy God of the universe, as they set the temperature of Godliness in their family, church, work place and community.


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Dose of Reality is written by Joseph Harris and the content sometimes contains sarcasm and humor for emphasis of truth.


 

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The Kind of Christian I Am!


William Andrew Dillard

 

KNOW THE MAP OF LIFE
The Kind of Christian I Am!
The great cross-country auto race was lining up, as the story goes. Each car was occupied by a driver and a navigator. The 1500 mile race would take them through variant terrain and elevation as well as in urban and remote environments. On the second day of the race one car was far ahead; so far that no others were in sight. It was then that an unmarked crossroads appeared without any clear signs of which one was the road of the route. The driver turned to the navigator and asked which road they should take. The navigator replied that he did not know. When asked why he did not know, he replied that he was so sure that they would not be in the lead and that they could safely follow the others that he failed to study the route for himself.
Oh, I know what you are thinking: That is unthinkable, even outright stupid! Well, hold on! That may be true, but dare we take a look at a parallel, but much bigger and more important scenario? Think with me!
In spite of the babblings of so many eggheads of pseudoscience, each member of our species is a creation of the Divine Architect of the universe. Each living person on the planet has been admitted to the race of life with definitive purpose and directives. Moreover, it is given that the information so vital may be known and understood, and starting with step one, followed to a victorious finish with Creator commendations.
Now, let’s see: We are at a crossroads. Which way should we go? What are we to believe? What are we to do? How should we live? What is our story to tell to the nations? Please don’t tell me you failed to read the directions, and were counting on following the crowd.
Oh, those directions: What, and where are they? They are combined in a very neat, concise package called The Holy Bible (doubtless there is one or more of them in your home). There are sixty-six books bound between those covers. If you have not read at least thirty-three of them at least once, just what is your excuse for taking up space on the planet other than contributing to the overall working of antichrist? And, if you have read that much at least once, then you know Who is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. But have you embarked on that narrow road, or are you still at the crossroads, still a follower of the crowds, and sure to be a loser in the race.
Today is the accepted time of correcting course. God loves you so much! He is not willing that you should perish, but that you should come to Him in repentance of sin, and gain the knowledge of the truth. I emphatically affirm these things are true because that is the kind of Christian I am!

 

 

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THE FAR-REACHING, AMAZING GRACE OF GOD


 

Authored by William Andrew Dillard

 

The Kind of Christian I Am!
My friend, the late Dr. C.N. Glover, an able Missionary Baptist minister, and one of three founders of Missionary Baptist Seminary, wrote several books, and in later life penned a song which others set to music and placed it in the ABA Hymnal. The title of the song is “The Grace of God Amazes Me.” Over the vicissitudes of time, disciples of the Lord Jesus have all stood in absolute awe as they studied and contemplated the amazing grace of God. Some have considered that the enormity of their evil deeds placed them beyond the grace of God, and asked, “How far does the grace of God extend?”
Think with me about that!
Men err when they consider that evil and atrocious deeds make them more lost than others who live a good, moral life though estranged from Christ Jesus. The truth is all men are sinners. There are no exceptions. Natural sinners are lost….. even…. as lost as lost can be! The unrepentant men, moral or perpetrators of evil deeds are in the same boat. They are lost. It follows that one cannot become any more lost than…. lost! The good news is that the grace of God extends to all men! The most terrible person on earth may be saved when repenting of sin and trusting Christ Jesus as his personal Savior. God’s grace reaches that far!
Consider that the grace of God extended to John Newton, the captain of a slave ship. He was heavily involved in the capture of African natives, and transporting them to the human auction blocks. God convicted him. He was saved, and became a preacher of the gospel that stirred all England. Moreover he gave the Christian world its most beloved song, “Amazing Grace.” Additionally, the grace of God extended to William Cooper who suffered greatly from deep depression, but in his cry to God was heard, saved, and went on to give us such moving hymns as “There is a Fountain Filled With Blood.” The grace of God extended to Saul of Tarsus who made havoc of the very church of the Lord Jesus Christ as he imprisoned them, and consented to their death. Later, after a,meeting with Jesus, he took the name of Paul, (little guy). He declared himself to be the chiefest of sinners. How he rejoiced in the amazing grace of God!
Millions testify: “The grace of God reached even me.” Indeed, it extends to the far reaches of earth while it is “today.” You are not beyond the grace of God, but you can sin away your day of grace. “Today” the Creator, Redeemer will hear the sinner’s cry of repentance. I am adamantly certain of this fact of God’s Word, and that is the kind of Christian I am.

 

 

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Render to All Their Dues


Render to All Their Dues

Romans 13:1-7

Render therefore to all their dues: tribute to whom tribute is due; custom to whom custom; fear to whom fear; honour to whom honour,” Romans 13:7.

  

What would happen if I decided one day that I would stop paying my house payment, car payment or income taxes? Is that really a viable option for a responsible citizen, much less a Christian? Aside from the immediate consequences like losing my home, my car, paying fines or even imprisonment, there would be long-term consequences as well. There would not be a bank that would take a risk in giving me a loan and my credit scores would plummet. Why? Because when I default in paying what I owe, it says something about my character.

God reminded Christians to pay what they owed, whether it was taxes or revenue, honor or respect, because when we follow through on our commitments and obligations, it says much about our character. Our character speaks to the world about the character of the God we worship and serve. How can we expect our friends and neighbors to believe us when we tell them about the life-changing gospel of Christ if our own lives are not changed for the better, or if they cannot trust us to fulfill our obligations? Christians are obliged to be law-abiding citizens and represent God well. Our only purpose on this earth is to communicate the good news that Jesus paid a debt He did not owe so that we could be forgiven a debt we could not pay.

JUST A THOUGHT

Will you fulfill your obligations for God’s glory today?

Mark Clements

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THE KIND OF CHRISTIAN I AM! A Truthful Christian!


 

William Andrew Dillard

 

A most interesting and intriguing question is that reverberating from the lips of the Roman magistrate Pontius Pilate who said to our Lord, “what is truth?” That question ever remains the point of division among men. Pseudo-scientists reject elements of faith in search of a truth they will not find. Philosophers offer variant, opposing viewpoints of what they think is truth. Religious leaders propagate diametrically opposing views all in the name of truth. Worse than all the others, they purport that the truth they espouse comes from God. Surely, the fierceness of judgment is ever increasing. But back to the question, “What is truth?”
Some say there is mathematical truth; medical truth, moral truth, religious truth, historical truth, etc. Why do these divisions exist? They are man-made, and exist mainly due to man’s desire to achieve an ecumenical mastery of life on the false premise that he is on an evolving scale of existence, without acknowledging his Creator. In that rejection, he is allowed to proceed to the ultimate global disaster by the very grace of the Creator he insists does not exist. Let it be underscored that truth is truth no matter what discipline of life it primarily affects, and that all truth comes from God.
Jesus asked our Heavenly Father to “Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.” John 17:17. It is God Who created and set in order every aspect of creation, thus it is His Word that is the ultimate and prevailing truth. Thus did Jesus say to His disciples of then and now, “And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” John 8:32
So, where does all the variant lines of so-called knowledge purporting to be truth originate? Jesus plainly identifies them as coming from Satan, saying, “. . .He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. . .” John 8:44. On the other hand, we are told of the Holy Spirit that is given to God’s people, “But the anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye shall abide in him.” I John 2:27.
Accordingly, the Spirit of God is altogether true, and teaches His people in all things that are true! It is the Word of God that is true; hence, the Spirit of God impresses upon searching hearts the unity, symmetry, and harmony of magnificent truth presented in His Holy Word. All who live in this manner walk in truth, not in total separation from the flesh, but in spite of it. I fully commit to these lines of thought because that is the kind of Christian I am!

 

 

 

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Think It Not Strange


 

1 Peter 4:12-16

 

Yet if any man suffer as a Christian, let him not be ashamed; but let him glorify God on this behalf,” 1 Peter 4:16.

 

Last summer, I was driving my car back from a city reach mission trip to Canada, when in the heat of the day, my air conditioner stopped working. Sometimes I like surprises, but this was not a surprise I enjoyed. We rode the rest of the way home in one hundred degree weather with no A/C. A few days later, we discovered that a coolant hose had been punctured because it was rubbing against the frame of the car. When we discovered that, it was obvious why the A/C had stopped working, and we fixed it.

 

When it comes to living by faith, many Christians are like me on the mission trip. We expect everything to go problem free with little to no discomfort. Unfortunately, that is the opposite of what God tells us to expect. In reality, a person living by faith in Jesus Christ is an anomaly among the people of the world, and whenever our faith collides with the culture, there is friction and tension. In the text, Peter told us that, not only should we not be surprised when we suffer because of our faith, but we should anticipate suffering with rejoicing. If we endure negative circumstances because of our faith, that is a sign to us that our faith is real and we are walking in obedience, therefore we should glorify God, gladly wearing the name Christian.

 

 

JUST A THOUGHT

 

Will you rejoice in God in good times and bad today?

 

 

Mark Clements

 

 

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William Andrew Dillard – HEBREW HONEYCOMB AIR CONDITIONED CHRISTIANS


 

“And because iniquity shall abound , the love of many shall wax cold.” Matt. 24:12
The past few decades of vaunted progress have given Adam’s race no few creature comforts, not the least of which is air conditioning. It is almost a necessity in southern parts of the country where high temperatures and equally high humidity send all who are able scurrying to the cool indoors. Of course, a very large crowd of Christians will endure extreme heat, humidity, rain, etc. for hours at a sporting event, but would never subject themselves to a short worship service if the air is not conditioned for comfort. This underscores the point I am attempting to make.
In the Hebrew Old Testament, the common word for “cold” as in lower temperatures is “Qal.” Its Greek equivalent in the New Testament is “psucho” which specifically refers to a lowering of temperature by the process of blowing or evaporation; the same thing as modern air conditioning. Metaphorically, it denotes a cooling of love, zeal, desire for a thing, and names the responsible, causative agent: the abounding of iniquity. To be more specific, it is the individual reaction to the abundance of iniquity. What does this mean?
Iniquity is sin, to be sure, but a specific type of sin. The term means “no law” or “without law” and specifically to proceed in religious affairs not knowing, nor wanting to know, what the rules of God (His Word) teaches. In the vernacular it may be stated, “I know what I want to do, or believe, so don’t confuse me with the facts.”
It is sometimes difficult for New Testament church members to follow the plain teaching of the Word when others all around them make a loud claim to be Christian, but have little to no regard for the Word. Such cooling for God, His Word, His church is not a sudden turn of events, but a slow, consistent process. Discouragement pervades the psyche of the nominal Christian who is by virtue of spiritual immaturity, totally unsuited for pressure, ridicule, or persecution in any form. He then finds himself aligning more closely with the unfaithful and practitioners of iniquity: thus is he air conditioned, air conditioned, cooling, colder, cold! One need not be highly intelligent to identify this as a current, widespread reality, but though it is happening as Jesus said it would, one does not have to be identified among the “many” in that process.
Consider that “God reacts to man as man reacts to God!” is indeed a true statement. Hear the apostle James, “Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded.” There is much joy and excitement in witnessing this age come to a close. Doubtlessly, but though troublesome and sometimes most stressful, this is the grandest time to be a knowledgeable Christian on the planet, but you can’t see it if you have waxed cold.

 

 

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