cwkennedy

Weekday devotionals for Christians

What He Really Asked For…

Mark 10:46-52
(46) And they came to Jericho: and as he went out of Jericho with his disciples and a great number of people, blind Bartimaeus, the son of Timaeus, sat by the highway side begging.
(47) And when he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to cry out, and say, Jesus, thou Son of David, have mercy on me.
(48) And many charged him that he should hold his peace: but he cried the more a great deal, Thou Son of David, have mercy on me.
(49) And Jesus stood still, and commanded him to be called. And they call the blind man, saying unto him, Be of good comfort, rise; he calleth thee.
(50) And he, casting away his garment, rose, and came to Jesus.
(51) And Jesus answered and said unto him, What wilt thou that I should do unto thee? The blind man said unto him, Lord, that I might receive my sight.
(52) And Jesus said unto him, Go thy way; thy faith hath made thee whole. And immediately he received his sight, and followed Jesus in the way.

5. His call for help began with his call for mercy – vs. 47+ 48
What did Bartimaeus really want? He wanted mercy.  He showed wisdom by asking for mercy first. While this thought might be a little odd, understand that healing for him came through the vehicle of mercy from Jesus Christ, the Great Physician.  Not much is said, usually, about mercy in this story; but his healing came after he asked for mercy. Notice that the beggar was not fooled about his situation. So often our pride, stubbornness, etc… will prevent us from healing because in order for us to get the healing we need, we must first ask and beg for the Lord’s mercy.  Mercy is not getting the bad things that we really deserve.  Pride fools us into thinking that we are good and do not need mercy because we are good.  Remember this:
Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall. (Proverbs 16:18)
6. He overcame because Jesus had mercy on Him. – vs. 52
Do not fall for the trap that you do not need Jesus! We need Jesus! We cannot do what is needed with out His power, mercy, and grace! When Jesus stopped and summoned for Bartimaeus to come to Him, Jesus asked what he wanted.  Bartimaeus replied with a request to receive his sight. When we can show wisdom and in humility ask for mercy, we might be surprised as to what God might do for us!

When was the last time you asked for mercy? That’s right….YOU! When was the last time you asked for mercy? Make sure that you do not allow your pride to fool you into thinking that you are all good on your own and that you do not need mercy. I am not trying to be rude or unkind; I just want to point out that all of us need healing in some area of our life and we should start our request by asking for mercy!

7. The only one that really helped him was Jesus! – vs. 52
The only real help any of us get is from Jesus! Now before I get crucified; let me explain. I am not minimizing the importance of the human help that we get from others. I greatly appreciate all that has been given to me from others. I realize though that :
The king’s heart is in the hand of the LORD, as the rivers of water: he turneth it whithersoever he will. (Proverbs 21:1)
All of the help that I have received from every human hand came because they were following the leading of the Lord! I really appreciate those people who follow the Lord’s leading. Some of you who might read this are ones that the Lord has blessed me with. I know most of you who read this and realize that you want to follow the Lord Jesus and that is why you do the good things that you do! But remember, our help comes from the Lord! God is so good to all of us and one of the evidences is the presence of good people in our lives. Real healing for Bartimaeus came only from Jesus when no other human would help him. We should remember that, when others fail us Jesus never will!

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August 11, 2017 Posted by | Devotional | , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Pride Has A Steep Price

Psa 10:1  Why standest thou afar off, O LORD? why hidest thou thyself in times of trouble?

Psa 10:2  The wicked in his pride doth persecute the poor: let them be taken in the devices that they have imagined.

Psa 10:3  For the wicked boasteth of his heart’s desire, and blesseth the covetous, whom the LORD abhorreth.

Psa 10:4  The wicked, through the pride of his countenance, will not seek after God: God is not in all his thoughts.

It is interesting to note what God’s actions are concerning the wicked.  Notice what the wicked does in these few verses and you will see why God chooses not to be around the wicked.

The wicked in his pride:

1. Persecutes the poor.  He is like a bully: always picking on someone who he can push around.  Notice the word persecute.  It is not bother, irritate, etc.  It is persecute.  Webster’s Dictionary defines persecute as:

In a general sense, to pursue in a manner to injure, vex or afflict; to harass with unjust punishment or penalties for supposed offenses; to inflict pain from hatred or malignity. That is what the wicked does to the poor.   God protects the poor and supplies there need.
2. Boast’s his heart’s desire.  He brags on the evil that he wants to do.
3. Blesses the Covetous.  God abhors the covetous.
4. Does not seek after God.

I am amazed at what some people allow their pride to do in their life.

Pro 16:18  Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall.

Pro 29:23  A man’s pride shall bring him low: but honour shall uphold the humble in spirit.

Will you allow your pride to get in the way of things and hinder what God has for you?  Only you can deal with your pride.

1Pe 5:6  Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time:

March 22, 2012 Posted by | Devotional | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Finger Pointer!!

Romans 2:1   Therefore thou art inexcusable, O man, whosoever thou art that judgest: for wherein thou judgest another, thou condemnest thyself; for thou that judgest doest the same things.

We all have done it.  We will most likely do it today.  We all know someone in our lives that could make a living off judgement if it carried a paycheck.  Why is it so easy to judge?   Better yet…. Why is it so easy to do? Why are we so good at it?

I should say we think we are good at it.  We are really only good at hurting people’s feelings and getting right out of the way of God’s will in this part of our lives.  It  is true that some of our walk with Christ may just have something to do with people you don’t agree with or even worse…  DON’T LIKE.

As the scripture above states, this isn’t something we should over look.  I really believe this is the fall of most of our brothers and sisters.  The judgement of our self, first.  Then of others.  Then we get really crazy with it and began to be a sideline judge of what God may think of us or others.  We began to play who is more religious games.  Before we know it we are not even reading our bible to get closer to God.  We are just running around with it in our hand and forget who is really in charge of this life we are living.

Where is the answer you ask?  I believe it comes right down to where your heart is.  If your heart is still being controlled by you.  Then it will be impossible to not fall into the inexcusable.  If we just take a few seconds when judgement looms and think of what we are doing.  Give God the situation and work hard to find a way to be DIFFERENT in the situation.  Most of the time the actions you are about to judge in others are just a defense they have built.  They built it to defend themselves from judgement.  It is a never ending loop if someone doesn’t put a stop to it.  Be that person today please.  Retire from Finger Pointers of America and join a  movement that has eternal benefits.  Love on someone you would have judge today.  Start with YOU!!

-ERN

Wishing everyone a safe and Happy New Year.  May you receive God’s blessings this upcoming year with great joy.

December 30, 2011 Posted by | Devotional, Sunday School | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Be The Horse

Luke 4:2   Being forty days tempted of the devil. And in those days he did eat nothing: and when they were ended, He afterward hungered.

How long have you been tempted lately?

We get so overwhelmed by our current life issues it hinders our walk with Christ.  We get tunnel vision and sometimes may forget the bigger picture.  40 day is a very long time to suffer through something.  For most of us four minutes is a long time to suffer through anything.  Jesus after being tempted by the best of tempters and not eating along with that just waited in faith for his father to help him.  He stepped back in all them small moments and noticed the bigger picture.  Of course, he was God in a human body but I am sure it was still mentally challenging.

I would like to challenge everyone this morning to take another look at what is going on in your life today. No matter how it seems right now IT IS TEMPORARY.  That is one promise this guy can make.  EVERYTHING here on earth is temporary.  Now, here is when it gets interesting.  You are not a prisoner to situations of your life.  You are an active and willing ACTOR in it.  That’s RIGHT.  You can choose to be or do anything you have enough FAITH to do.  If you have faith in God to see you through.  I really mean some active faith.   You will handle your “40 day temptation” with much faster results by being the horse.  Lets stop acting like the blade stuck in the ground.

Lets make a promise to each other today.  No longer will I be the tool of the harvest.  I will be the harvest itself with Christ’s guidance.

-ERN

December 29, 2011 Posted by | Devotional, Sunday School | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Joseph’s Obedience

Mat 1:20 But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost.
Mat 1:21 And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins.
Mat 1:22 Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying,
Mat 1:23 Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.
Mat 1:24 Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife:
Mat 1:25 And knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name JESUS.

 

I started a little series on Joseph and I want to continue it today.  I have listed the first 4 points.  I will add one more.

1. Joseph did right, even when his ancestors and relatives did wrong.

2. Joseph reacted slowly.

3. Joseph respected Mary, even when he didn’t trust her.

4. Joseph waited and thought about what should be done, before he did anything.

5. Joseph obeyed God.  I want to point out a few things on this point:

1. He had to listen, to hear the instructions.  Sometimes we disobey God and do not intend to disobey, because we are to busy talking and not listening.  Have you ever told your child to be quiet so that they can listen to your instructions?  That is what God feels.  By the way, were you listening in church yesterday?  Were you in church yesterday?  God is talking, the question is Are you listening?

2. He obeyed, even when others did not understand.  This can be hard when you have loved ones looking at you like you are crazy.  If God tells you to do something then you should do it.  By the way, make sure it is God telling you to do it and not yourself convincing you that what you want to do is of the Lord.

3. He experienced embarrassment from obeying God.  Sometimes God’s instructions embarrass our pride.  That is ok, because our pride will destroy us.  If you do not understand what I mean, then do right in front of others that are not doing right.  They will not make you feel good.  The Will of God is not embarrassing at all, but fulfilling it in the eyes of those who do not understand God’s will can be embarrassing.  Joseph walked around with a pregnant fiance, at a time when that was shameful.  Will you be willing to sacrifice your pride for God’s will?

December 12, 2011 Posted by | Devotional, Sunday School | , , , , , | Leave a comment

God Needs An Empty Cup

 

Eph 5:18  And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;

Mat 5:6  Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.

Last week I talked about hungering after righteousness.  I want to point out another aspect of being filled.  Instead of using food and the human stomach to illustrate this devotion, I want to use a cup.  It is a good thing to hunger after righteousness.  It is wonderful to thirst for things that are Godly, but there are some things that hinder the “filling up” that we so desire for God to do to us and for us.

If  we are to get filled from God we must then make room for God to fill us up:

1. We must empty ourselves of our own ideas of God.  We have a Bible that tells us about God, but there is also a lot of areas that we do not understand about God.  Sometimes our pre-conceived ideas of God hinder and limit what God is able to do through us and to us.

2. We must empty ourselves of our own pride.  Pride gets in the way of a lot of things.  One of the most important things that it hinders is the work of God in our lives.

Pro 16:18  Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall. 

Our pride motivates us to do some things that we will eventually regret.  But for some reason, we always allow our pride to dictate our action.  We must empty ourselves of this if we intend for God to use us and fill us.

3. We must empty ourselves of our own ways.  Many times….most of the time our own solution gets in the way of God’s solution.  We want God to come through for us all of the time, but we do not empty our selves of our own solutions and therefor God will not fill us with His plan.

How bad do you really want to be filled?  God can only fill you according to the space that He is given to fill.  Will you be able to empty yourself so that God can fill you?  The choice is yours…what will you do with it?

November 21, 2011 Posted by | Devotional | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

What God Really Wants

1Pe 5:6 Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time: 
1Pe 5:7 Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you. 
1Pe 5:8 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:

I have fallen prey in the past to the thought that God loves me, but will punish me as quickly and as soon a He can and does so without any remorse.  This thinking is wrong and is often a result of my own sin nature trying to figure out what God will do and Who He is, when His Word will tell me what He does and Who He is.  I have heard some people share their thoughts with me on how God will “swing His big club and knock me out when I step out of line.”  This thinking is wrong also.  While God is a jealous God  (Deu 4:24  For the LORD thy God is a consuming fire, even a jealous God), I believe He does not want to do hurt any of us, even when we sin and mess-up.  Satan wants to hurt us, not God.  Satan wants us to be discouraged, not God.  Satan wants us to give up and not be useful any more, not God.  This is one of the many reasons why God put this verse in the Bible: Rom 5:20  Moreover the law entered, that the offence might abound. But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound.  

So what stops God from doing what He really wants to do to us and for us, like blessing us and lifting us up?  The answer lies in the following verses:

1Jn 1:9  If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 

Jas 4:10  Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up. 

1. We must confess our sins.  When we do, He will cleanse us.  He is the only one that can cleanse us; not you , not me, not a priest, not a rabbi, not any human being can cleanse you.

2. If we humble ourselves in the sight of God, He will lift us up.  This is why pride is so dangerous and for many it is intoxicating.  Many people will not humble themselves; they refuse to do it.  They believe that if they do that, then that will show weakness.  Rather, it shows foolishness because:

Pro 16:18  Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall. 

don’t be like the fool and refuse to humble yourself in the sight of God.  When you do that:

1. God won’t have to humble you.

2. God will lift you up.  THIS IS WHAT HE REALLY WANTS TO DO TO YOU!

October Bible Reading Schedule

18. Ezra 5-8:20

I Corinth. 3:5-4:21

Psalms 29-30:12

Prov. 20:26-30

19. Ezra 8:21-10:44

I Corinth. 5-6:20

Psalms 31:1-18

Prov. 21:1-3

20. Nehemiah 1-5:13

I Corinth. 7:1-40

Psalms 31:19-32:11

Prov. 21:4-7

21. Nehemiah 5:14-9:21

I Corinth. 8-9:18

Psalms 33:1-22

Prov. 21:8-12

22. Nehemiah 9:22-12:26

I Corinth. 9:19-11:2

Psalms 34:1-22

Prov. 21:13-16

23. Nehemiah 12:27-Esther 3:15

I Corinth. 11:3-34

Psalms 35:1-28

Prov. 21:17-20

24. Esther 4-10:3

II Corinth. 12-13:13

Psalms 36-37:11

Prov. 21:21-24

October 19, 2011 Posted by | Devotional, Sunday School | , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment