Engage the Word Blog

Saturday, 03 November 2012

For the wedding of the Lamb has come, and his bride has made herself ready. Fine linen, bright and clean, was given her to wear.”

We are the spotless bride of Christ.  Have we made ourselves ready? 

We see the beast being defeated and thrown into the lake of fire.  We see the judgement of the dead.  Why are these things written?  It is to motivate us to action.  How will we respond?

What is God saying through His Word?

Posted on 11/03/2012 12:18 AM by Bryan Mose
Friday, 02 November 2012

I was reminded of a story about a basketball coach who was famously tough on his players.  A reporter once asked a player, "don't you get tired of coach yelling at you all the time".  The player's response: "No, I get more upset when he stops yelling at me".  "Why's that?" quipped the reporter. "Because when he stops yelling, I know he doesn't care about helping me any more".

I am always moved when I read "Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest and repent" God loves us enough to discipline us.  And, he always extends the opportunity to repent.

As God examines these churches, he finds things they could be doing better.  To all of them, he extends the opportunity to make it right.

"To the one who is victorious, I will give the right to sit with me on my throne, just as I was victorious and sat down with my Father on his throne."  Let's be counted among those who were victorious through Christ.

What is God saying to you today?

Posted on 11/02/2012 12:30 AM by Bryan Mose
Thursday, 01 November 2012

What an amazing picture of love.  How do we know what love is? 

"Jesus Christ laid down his life for us."  What is our response?  We should love the world and lay down our lives for those around us.  I wonder sometimes if we have forgotten this picture.  How do we respond to that today?  How are we doing in laying down our lives for our brothers and sisters?

"We love because he first loved us."  It's because of Jesus that we can love others.  It is because of God's love for us.  Even though he knew our hearts, he loves us in spite of ourselves and reaches out to us. 

What is God saying through His Word to you?  Who do you need to love today?

Posted on 11/01/2012 12:44 AM by Bryan Mose
Wednesday, 31 October 2012

It thrills my soul to think about  being "filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy" at the salvation Jesus purchased for me.

But, read on.  Out of that joy we are to "set your hope on the grace to be brought to you when Jesus Christ is revealed at his coming".  And "not be conformed to this world".

Does it encourage you to know this: "But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light."

Life a life that is pleasing to God and points others toward Him.

What is God saying to you today?

Posted on 10/31/2012 12:29 AM by Bryan Mose
Tuesday, 30 October 2012

There's a lot here, no question.  But, a few things jump out at me.

First "But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us." (4:7).  We are just clay vessels.  The gospel deserves the finest vessels, but God has chosen to use in in our weakness, simple clay pots.  It's so we can't boast.  We must lay "me" down, literally let it die of malnourishment.  Then we can truly be effective for Christ.

Paul continues to paint this picture by telling us that we are outwardly wasting away (but inwardly renewed), that our earthly body is but a tent (but we have an eternal house in Heaven).

Finally, I am encouraged by the verse in the reading today:

I tell you, now is the time of God’s favor, now is the day of salvation. (6:2).  We need to shout it from the rooftops.

What is God saying through His Word?

Posted on 10/30/2012 8:34 AM by Bryan Mose
Monday, 29 October 2012

I am encouraged by the effect of unity on the church in Colosse.

Notice how the gospel spread.  Paul praises them for the way they care for each other.  This is quite a contrast from the division and anxiety we read about in Phillipi.

I am particularly encouraged today by verse 17.  "In Him all things hold together".  Isn't it great to know that when it seems like everything is falling apart, we have an all-powerful God holding them together?

What is God saying to you today?

Posted on 10/29/2012 8:19 AM by Bryan Mose
Sunday, 28 October 2012

This is a short passage, but there's a lot here for us.

First, notice in verses 2-3 that Paul is addressing division in the church.  How does division hinder the work of the Holy Spirit?  Can we be effective with division?

Secondly, notice the effect on the rest of the church. Paul tells them not to be anxious. Instead, he tells them to rejoice and seek the Lord with thanksgiving.

Finally, he tells them to direct their minds away from the division and toward good things: "Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things." 

What is God saying through His Word today?

Posted on 10/28/2012 12:36 AM by Bryan Mose
Saturday, 27 October 2012

The armor of God.  How do we put on the Armor each day?

Notice the importance of each piece.  No piece is less important than another and all of them work together to make us ready for battle each day.

Psalm 18 tells us: "It is God who arms me with strength and makes my way perfect. He makes my feet like the feet of a deer; he enables me to stand on the heights. He trains my hands for battle; my arms can bend a bow of bronze. You give me your shield of victory, and your right hand sustains me; you stoop down to make me great."  Amen

What is God saying through His Word (the sword) today?

Posted on 10/27/2012 12:29 AM by Bryan Mose
Friday, 26 October 2012

Today we see the contrast between living by the Spirit or by the flesh.

Look at the encouragement to "keep in step with the Spirit".  What does that mean in your life today?

Notice the stern warning in 6:7-8.  What a stark contrast. 

Our goal is to become sensitive to the Holy Spirit. Join me in asking God to teach us to hear his still small voice and to be sensitive to promptings from the Spirit that he’s placed inside you. Then, believe the truth that he will guide you through the decisions and details of your life.

What is God saying to you today?

Posted on 10/26/2012 9:32 AM by Bryan Mose
Thursday, 25 October 2012

What an encouraging passage today.

There is now no condemnation.  The law was useful to show us our sin, but it had no power to set us free.  We are free in Christ Jesus.

Paul challenges us and God calls us "in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us." 

What is God saying to you today?  What challenges do you face where you need God's help to overcome?

Posted on 10/25/2012 12:15 AM by Bryan Mose
Wednesday, 24 October 2012

Paul was a man of great reason.  He was born and raised a Jew and had the best Jewish education and training that one could ask for.  However, he was sent for the Gentiles.

He wanted to preach in Rome.  It was the center of power, culture and at this time, the center of the world.  Many would be afraid of such a task.

Do you sense Paul's passion as he shares his testimony before Festus.  Look at his boldness: "The king is familiar with these things, and I can speak freely to him. I am convinced that none of this has escaped his notice, because it was not done in a corner. King Agrippa, do you believe the prophets? I know you do.” (26:26-27).

What is God saying to you today?  What is your mission field?

Posted on 10/24/2012 12:13 AM by Bryan Mose
Tuesday, 23 October 2012

There are a lot of observations here.  But, today I think about how easy we have it as American Christians.  We are relatively free to share our faith and the Gospel message without a lot of fear.  Certainly, the tide is turning and people are more likely to challenge or question us.  But, there is very little chance we are going to be stoned as Paul was in our reading today.

I wonder if there is a day coming when we will be persecuted for sharing the Gospel.  I wonder what our response will be to that.  I mean, we don't appear to be too bold in today's climate.  How will we respond if/when we are persecuted?

My prayer is that our response will be like that of Paul and Barnabus "And the disciples were filled with joy and with the Holy Spirit." (13:52) or "But after the disciples had gathered around him, he got up and went back into the city." (14:20).

It's amazing how when we are truly spreading the Gospel, led by the Spirit, nothing can stop us.

What is God saying through His Word today?

Posted on 10/23/2012 12:56 AM by Bryan Mose
Monday, 22 October 2012

Today we see the story of Phillip.  Phillip's obedience is remarkable.  He didn't question the direction to go or the prompting of the Spirit to speak to the Ethiopian. 

One thing strikes me here.  Phillip was so sensitive, so saturated with God's word that he was immediately able to answer the questions posed by the Ethiopian.  Are we ready for the same?  This just emphasized to me the importance of entering God's presence through His Word and prayer each day.  It makes us sensitive to His leading and it prepares us to be ready with an answer.

The response of the Ethiopian is incredible "Look, here is water. What can stand in the way of my being baptized?"  What a celebration. 

What is God saying to you today?

Posted on 10/22/2012 8:50 AM by Bryan Mose
Sunday, 21 October 2012

I love reading Acts.  It encourages me so much and it shows us a picture of how "church" should work.

A few things strike me in this reading. 

Peter heals a beggar.  Nothing wrong with that.  But, they are taken before the Sandhedrin and asked "By what power or what name did you do this?"  Wow, what an amazing opportunity presented to Peter to speak.  So, he shares the gospel in an manner that is respectful, but irrefutable.  Are we ready to give an answer for our hope?

Then, the Sanhedrin asks them to just stop talking about Jesus.  Peter's response is so great.  "Which is right in God’s eyes: to listen to you, or to him? You be the judges! As for us, we cannot help speaking about what we have seen and heard.”  Wow!

I have to ask myself that same question.  How can I help but to speak about what I have seen and heard? 

How is God speaking to you today?

Posted on 10/21/2012 12:06 AM by Bryan Mose
Saturday, 20 October 2012

There is a lot in today's passage as well.  But, as I was reading, something struck me.

Pilate's question in verse 38, "What is truth?".  It is asked in response to Jesus in verse 37 "You say that I am a king. In fact, the reason I was born and came into the world is to testify to the truth. Everyone on the side of truth listens to me".

We live today in a world that is asking the same question as Pilate, "What is truth".  I've said many times that it only takes a trip to the bookstore and a quick glance down the self help aisle to see that we live in a world looking for the answer to that very question.  As I think about a few days ago when we began speaking about loving our neighbors. 

We are being sent out to share the truth.  I don't believe that you work where you do by accident or live where you live as a coincidence.  God has placed us where we are to share the truth.  We live in a lost and dying world desperately searching for meaning and truth.  We serve a Savior who testifies to the truth.  Let's connect them.

What is God's Word saying to you today?

Posted on 10/20/2012 12:54 AM by Bryan Mose
Friday, 19 October 2012

There's so much here.  On one hand, we see Satan entering one disciple and wanting to sift another.  Judas was so close to Jesus during his ministry.  Peter is determined to remain loyal even "to death".  Jesus assures him he has prayed (interceded) for him.  We have one who is intereding for us every day. When you think about Judas and Peter, you realize the spiritual forces at work and see that overcoming sin is not accomplished through willpower alone.  Only through the blood of Jesus can it be done. 

Luke tells us that a dispute arose as to who was going to be the greatest.  I love Jesus' response "Instead, the greatest among you should be like the youngest, and the one who rules like the one who serves."  (v. 26).  Jesus tells then in verse 37: "It is written: ‘And he was numbered with the transgressors; and I tell you that this must be fulfilled in me. Yes, what is written about me is reaching its fulfillment.”  This is a reference back to Isaiah 53:12.  Read it today.  See how Jesus "poured his life into death".  It's a powerful thought.

Finally, we see the disciples falling asleep as the Lord asks them to watch and pray.  How many times do we fall asleep when it comes to spiritual matters?

What is God saying through His Word today?

Posted on 10/19/2012 12:20 AM by Bryan Mose
Thursday, 18 October 2012

As we read today I am reminded of Matthew 22: 36-40.  There, Jesus tells us that loving the Lord with all your heart, soul, mind and strength is the "Greatest commandment".  He goes on verse 40 to tell us that "All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments" (v 40)  of loving our Lord and our neighbor.

I want to challenge you today to love your neighbor.  Really think about what that would look like.  It take us out of our comfort zones.  Wouldn't it be great if next week in the home meetings if we had 1 new person in each of the homes?

How is the Word speaking to you today?

Posted on 10/18/2012 12:59 AM by Bryan Mose
Wednesday, 17 October 2012

This passage has always amazed me.  Here is a man set free from the bondage of demon possession.  The people were so afraid of this man that they put him in the cemetary and chained him.  Yet, when he is set free from these demons, they "began to plead with Jesus to leave their region" v. 17. 

What is our response to Jesus?

I really am challenged today by Jesus' response to the man.  The formerly demon-possessed man is ready to drop everything and follow Jesus.  His response: "Go home to your own people and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how he has had mercy on you" (v. 19).

Are we telling our own people how much the Lord has done for us?  I know I could be doing much better.

What is God saying through His Word?

Posted on 10/17/2012 9:49 AM by Bryan Mose
Tuesday, 16 October 2012

Today, we read about Jesus walking on water.  Remember yesterday's "amazed" at the lack of, or amazing amount of, faith.  Jesus again says "“You of little faith,” he said, “why did you doubt?” (14:31)

Why do we doubt?  What about our faith doesn't let us trust Jesus with reckless abandon?  We allow the storms or even the calm around us to limit our picture of what Jesus can do.

What is God saying to you today?

Posted on 10/16/2012 12:20 AM by Bryan Mose
Monday, 15 October 2012

Today's reading is full of parables.  Each one could be a whole sermon or study.  But, why do you think Jesus teaches us in parables? 

I am challenged today by the realization that the wheat and the tares grow together.  That means that some of the people we sit in church with each Sunday, we may not see in Heaven.  Are we grasping that reality?  Does it break us and lead us to stand in the gap for them?

Finally, the chapter ends with Jesus' inability to do miracles in Nazareth.  Scripture says in Mark's account (Mark 6:6) "He was amazed at their lack of faith."  Amazed, but not in a good way.  "For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart." (Hebrews 4:12).  Read Matthew 8:5-13.  Here, a Roman (non-Jewish) centurion had so much faith that he knew that if Jesus sent word or spoke healing over his servant, it would be done.  Matthew 8:10 says: "When Jesus heard this, he was amazed and said to those following him, “Truly I tell you, I have not found anyone in Israel with such great faith."  That is the same word "amazed" that He used in today's reading. 

What is God saying to you through His Word today?

Posted on 10/15/2012 9:06 AM by Bryan Mose
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