New Every Morning

Sunrise

This I recall to my mind, therefore I have hope. The Lord’s lovingkindnesses indeed never cease, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness. ‘The Lord is my portion,’ says my soul, ‘Therefore I have hope in Him’” (Lamentations 3:21-23).

We sometimes hear it said that each day is a gift. This is certainly true, yet we need to know why this is true. It is about more than the simple fact that we are still alive. Each day is a gift because of God and what He provides for us each day.

In the passage above, Jeremiah reflected upon the goodness of God even as he and the nation were going through severe suffering (hence the name of the book Lamentations). There was still evidence of God’s care for them and a reason to have hope if they would focus on Him more than their present troubles.Continue Reading

Thankful: Conclusion

Thankful

Over the last few weeks, we have considered some reasons why we are to be thankful to God. We are to give thanks for His word because it shows us the way of salvation and what we should do to please Him. We are to show gratitude for the blessings that we receive in this life that have been provided to us by God. We must be thankful for God’s mercy which allows us the opportunity to be forgiven of our sins and have fellowship with Him. We also ought to always be grateful for the hope that we have through Christ that allows us to look forward to an eternal reward in heaven.Continue Reading

Thankful (Part 2): Thankful for Our Blessings

Thankful

For everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with gratitude; for it is sanctified by means of the word of God and prayer” (1 Timothy 4:4-5).

It is easy for us to focus on the troubles we face in life. We also tend to look at others who have more than us and wonder why we are not able to enjoy the riches or other benefits that they have. However, we usually only view this in one direction. There are certainly hardships and inequalities in life; but too often we tend to view ourselves in the role of the victim, forgetting how truly blessed we are. If we look at others who are “better off” than we are, there are many others who could look at us in the same way. We have much for which we should be thankful. In this article, we are going to focus on the temporal blessings of this life.Continue Reading

Man Does Not Live by Bread Alone

Bread

The book of Deuteronomy contains many reminders for God’s people that were given to them before entering the promised land of Canaan. They were reminded of the law, of their wilderness wanderings, and of God’s care for them. In the passage below, they were reminded of some of the blessings the Lord had provided, including how God sent manna from heaven for them to eat.

You shall remember all the way which the Lord your God has led you in the wilderness these forty years, that He might humble you, testing you, to know what was in your heart, whether you would keep His commandments or not. He humbled you and let you be hungry, and fed you with manna which you did not know, nor did your fathers know, that He might make you understand that man does not live by bread alone, but man lives by everything that proceeds out of the mouth of the Lord” (Deuteronomy 8:2-3).

The Israelites needed food and God provided it. It may not have been what they would have preferred, but it was what they needed.

We continually face challenges in our lives – just as the Israelites faced after they left Egypt. During these times, we should consider some of the lessons from this passage.Continue Reading

Social Issues (Part 13): Materialism

Social Issues

Materialism is about valuing physical things over spiritual things. This could be in the form of money or possessions. It is often associated with those who are rich, yet those who are poor can also be guilty of being materialistic.

Those who fall into the trap of materialism will find themselves in one of two categories: (1) they do not believe in God and, therefore, do not value the spiritual blessings and rewards He offers; or (2) they believe in God but do not recognize the danger posed by material things and how they can distract us from focusing on spiritual things. Regardless of the category in which one may be, the result is the same – a disregard of spiritual things in favor of physical things.Continue Reading

Turning Blessings into Curses

Honey

Have you found honey? Eat only what you need, that you not have it in excess and vomit it” (Proverbs 25:16).

In the Bible, honey is often used to symbolize God’s great blessings for man. When God told Moses of His plan to bring the Israelites out of Egypt and to the promised land of Canaan, He emphasized the goodness of the land by describing it as “a land flowing with milk and honey” (Exodus 3:8). Yet as the wise man pointed out in the verse above, that same blessing can be turned into something with a negative impact on us.

It is possible to take the good things with which God blesses us and turn them into something bad for us. This can be done by misuse, abuse, or excess. In this article, I would like to notice a few examples of how this can be done with certain blessings.Continue Reading

A Year of Jubilee

Year of Jubilee

The start of a new year is seen by many as a time to restart – enact changes, make resolutions, set goals, and so on. Obviously, these things can be done any time of the year; but the start of a calendar year makes a natural break that can be used to spur us on to start anew in some way.

In the Law of Moses, there were instructions about a time to “restart” or begin again. It was the year of jubilee that occurred every fifty years.

You are also to count off seven sabbaths of years for yourself, seven times seven years, so that you have the time of the seven sabbaths of years, namely, forty-nine years. You shall then sound a ram’s horn abroad on the tenth day of the seventh month; on the day of atonement you shall sound a horn all through your land.

You shall thus consecrate the fiftieth year and proclaim a release through the land to all its inhabitants. It shall be a jubilee for you, and each of you shall return to his own property, and each of you shall return to his family. You shall have the fiftieth year as a jubilee; you shall not sow, nor reap its aftergrowth, nor gather in from its untrimmed vines. For it is a jubilee; it shall be holy to you. You shall eat its crops out of the field” (Leviticus 25:8-12).

As we begin a new year, there are several lessons that are good for us to learn from this year of jubilee.Continue Reading