“Fools Errand”

PRAYING FOR FAMILY, FRIENDS, CHURCH AND

Don’t fall to the deceiving spirits (Idols and ideologies) of this world (Jer 10:11–16). #BewareOfDeceivingSpirits #StandSecureInTheTruthOfGod #Fool’sErrand

MORNING WATCH NOTES:

All the deceitful idols and ideologies of this world will vanish. They are on a fool’s errand who create and follow after those things that are contrary to and are bent on destroying the God of the Heavens, the people of the world. Deceiving spirits promise happiness and power. But in the end deliver only chaos and destruction.

Jehovah God who created and preserves the earth and all that is in it, who commands the wind and rain, will destroy every stronghold that stands against him and deceives his people. His great love for his people will bring seasons of discipline (ref 9:13–16). Judgment will reveal in whom the real power lies. Lord, I stand secure in you to keep me from the deceiving spirits of this world.

The “Only Good”

PRAYING FOR FAMILY, FRIENDS, CHURCH AND

Find your hope in the only true and living God, Jehovah (Jer 10:6-10). #NoGodLikeJehovah #OneTrueGod #GodTheOnlyTrueGood

MORNING WATCH NOTES:

Jeremiah draws a sharp contrast between the wisdom of God and a deaf, dumb, wooden, “no god.” There is no comparison. Name the image, name the ideology that is set before us to idolize and venerate as the summum bonum (highest good) in life. It is infantile in comparison to Jehovah God.

There is no God like Jehovah: all wise, all powerful, all merciful, all present and among us. He speaks, he counsels, he guides, he listens to us and understands. He gives grace to the humble. Oh Lord, you are not the “highest good.” You are the only good; the living, true and eternal God (Jude 1:25). In you alone I put my hope.

Scarecrow gods

PRAYING FOR FAMILY, FRIENDS, CHURCH AND

Trust God; neither fear nor depend on the idols or ideologies of this world (Jer 10 1–6 look). #FalseGods #TrustJehovahGod

Would You Trust These Advisors?

MORNING WATCH NOTES:

Listen to what the Lord says to Israel. Do not act like nor fear others who worship dead idols. How ridiculous: a man cuts down a tree. Another man carves an image, made up in his own mind, out of the dead wood. Another man paints and decorates it. Others stand the image up and nail it down so that it won’t fall.

Men lost in idolatry worship a lifeless image made by hand. It is a block of inert wood. It is like an empty headed scarecrow stood up in a field. It can’t speak. It can’t walk, so men carry it. Men call it their God. Really? God says, do not fear nor worship such man-made images (or ideologies). They are no gods. They can neither harm you nor do you any good.

“Lord [Jehovah God], there is none like you. You are great, and your name is full of power.“ You revealed yourself to us. You are Immanuel, God with us (Mat 1:23). In Jesus, you walked among us and spoke to us (Heb 1:2). I worship you alone.

Timeless Benediction

PRAYING FOR FAMILY, FRIENDS, CHURCH AND

May you know and rest in the timeless assurance of God (Jud 1:24,25; Heb 4:3). #ToGodAscribeAllPowerAndMajesty

MORNING WATCH NOTES:

Here is a benediction that the apostle Paul would be proud of (see Paul’s benediction Rom 16:25). “All glory to God“ who stands watch over the souls of his called out ones. He will deliver them “faultless“ into his very holy presence (Eph 5:27).

“All glory to God“ who alone has rescued us in Christ Jesus our Lord from an eternal hell. “All glory to God“ for his timeless greatness/splendor, his power and authority – that is “before all time, in this present time and beyond times and times to come.“ In these last days, awaiting Christ return, we may rest confidently in our God.

Lord, words fail this aged sentry to express my trust in your absolute power and majesty. But it is where my soul comes down to rest, even “the rest of God (Heb 4:3). What a blessed and timeless benediction!

Do The Unexpected

PRAYING FOR FAMILY, FRIENDS, CHURCH AND NATION

Treat those antagonistic towards the faith with Mercy and Prayer (Jud 1:22,23). #Mercy #TheUnexpected

MORNING WATCH NOTES:

How do I treat and pray for those who malign faith in Christ and the biblical values I hold dear? Do the unexpected thing. Be merciful towards others whose faith is faltering; rescue those who have gone to the dark side. But do so cautiously, hating the sin and not getting caught up in their departure from faith. Galatians 6:1 comes to mind.

Certainly praying for those who malign the faith is implied here and made clear in Luke 6:28. As hard as it may be, pray for those who live and think contrary to you. Do the unexpected thing. Pray for them. Over time your attitude towards them will change. Mercy will kick in. Lord, create in me a desire to act mercifully towards those who have faltered or left the faith and to pray for them.

A Gibraltar Faith

PRAYING FOR FAMILY, FRIENDS, CHURCH AND NATION

Stand fast in your faith; encourage the faithful (Jud 1:17–21). #StandFastInFaith #EncourageTheFaithful

“The Rock”

MORNING WATCH NOTES:

So, what are the sentry’s standing orders in these “last days,“ in the face of those who make a mockery of biblical values and live a hedonistic lifestyle, who create division and who do not live by the Spirit of God? Jude answers: Be strengthened in the faith (have a “Gibraltar“ sized faith).

Build one another up who do follow God faithfully. Be prayerful for each other (and those who deny the faith). Look forward to the merciful coming of Christ and eternal life. Thus you will stay safe in the saving, keeping grip of God‘s love. Lord, make of this old sentry a Gibraltar of faith to my friends and family. May I work tirelessly to encourage the faithful in my orbit of influence.

PRAYING FOR YOU WHO ARE

READING THIS BLOG TODAY

Vaccinated

PRAYING FOR FAMILY, FRIENDS, CHURCH AND NATION

Walk humbly before God and man (Jude 1:11). #BeHumbleBeforeGodAndMen

MORNING WATCH NOTES:

I can avoid becoming apostate myself by avoiding the characteristics of three men listed in Jude. Don’t be like Cain, Balaam, or Korah of old. Cain was indifferent to God‘s instructions. He thought he could do things how he wanted. Balaam was greedy and used religion for his own selfish ends. Korah outrightly denied God. He led a rebellion against God.

There is one characteristic I can develop that would vaccinate me against a spirit of apostasy. Micah 6:8 points me to “humility.” The example of Christ points me to “humility“ (Phi 2:5–7). If I put God first in my life and the interests of others ahead of my own, I can walk humbly and avoid a spirit of apostasy. Lord, may I walk always humbly before you and before men.

Faith Defenders

PRAYING FOR FAMILY, FRIENDS, CHURCH AND NATION

Remain faithful to God‘s word and the gospel message (Jude 1:3). #DefendTheFaith #TestTheSpirits #StudyGodsWord #ConfessSin #ConnectWithGodsPeople #ShareYourFaith #Pray

MORNING WATCH NOTES:

Jude has a lot to say about false teachers (apostate deceivers). He minces no words and is clear about their judgment. So how does one remain vigilant and loyal to the faith?

My thoughts are these:

1) Be filled with the Spirit (Eph 5:18)

2) Know God‘s word. Read it, study it, meditate on it and memorize it (2Ti 2:15; Psm 119:11)

3) Make prayer a priority in your life (Col 4:2; Phi 4:6)

4) Stay in close fellowship with other believers (Heb 10:25);

5) Examine closely what teachers are saying about God’s word (1Jn 4:1–3; Act 17:11);

6) Maintain a right relationship with God. Confess sin and trust him for forgiveness (1Jn 1:9);

7) Be a faithful witness and share your faith in Christ regularly (Mat 28:19,20; Act 1:8).

Lord, keep this old sentry filled with your Spirit that I may remain always faithful to your Word and to the Gospel message. I will be a…

“FAITH DEFENDER”

Standing Against Evil & Deceiving Spirits

PRAYING FOR FAMILY, FRIENDS, CHURCH AND NATION

Seek first the rebuke of God against deceiving spirits and evil authority in this world (Jude 1:5-11). #StandingAgainstSatan #StandingAgainstDeceivingSpirits

“The Lord Rebuke You Satan!”

MORNING WATCH NOTES:

Jude 1:9 presents an interesting account of a dispute between Michael the Archangel and Satan over the body of Moses. Nothing further is known about this specific account. Any explanation is conjecture. What we do know is that when Moses died, God buried him (Deu 34:5-8).

We also know that there is a mighty war being waged against evil in this world (2Co 4:3,4; 1Jn 5:19). The war against evil is also being waged in spiritual realms as well (Dan 10:12-14).

I take the Bible at its word. I believe it to be the inspired, inerrant word of God. I accept Jude’s account at face value. Read verse nine in context (vv5-11). After some study and prayer, this is my humble conclusion about Jude’s account:

Even the Archangel of Heaven, Michael, does not take matters into his own hands when dealing with those who have authority (bestowed or otherwise). Even satanic authority.

Michael doesn’t call Satan names. He doesn’t make accusations. He doesn’t command decrees. He doesn’t pronounce any curses. HE CALLS FORTH THE REBUKE OF GOD against the archenemy enemy of Christ. “The Lord rebuke you.” This same prayer is used against Satan in Zech 3:1,2 where he is the accuser of Yeshua, God’s High Priest (See note at the bottom*).

Herein lies a key weapon in the battle against deceiving spirits and evil authority in this world or in the church. PRAYER! Prayer that calls forth the the LORD of Hosts, the Mighty Commander of Heaven’s Armies to fight our battles.

PRAYER is a powerful and mighty weapon against evil. PRAYER, calling forth God’s intervention, will bring down all the mighty, all the corrupt, all the arrogant, all the perverted and (in this text) all the apostate. Prayer for God’s intervention into the affairs of men and the affairs of the church is the first plan of action, not a last resort. God will fight your battles (Exo 14:14). This is what I believe to be the point of Jude 1:9.

Jude is saying, in context, to this old sentry that I must be alert to apostate teachers (or any other deceitful authority), alert to the evil they represent. I must not be drawn into their web of deceit and assassination of the truth of the Gospel. BUT IN PRAYER, CALL ON THE POWERS OF HEAVEN TO INTERVENE. This is how I should respond first to those in any seat of authority. Then follow God’s counsel from there.

* Little is known about Jude’s accounting of the argument between Michael and Satan. But the phrase “The LORD rebuke you” is used elsewhere (eg. Zech 3:1-4). That should signal some thoughts of validation in Jude. My study of the Zechariah passage reveals to me that the prophet had a vision of the high courts of Heaven. The High Priest, Joshua [or Yeshua – symbolic of Christ], is standing before the LORD. Satan is at his side accusing him. “And the LORD said to Satan, ‘I, the LORD [rebuke you], I reject your accusations, Satan. Yes, the LORD, who has chosen Jerusalem, rebukes you.’”

But it is not the sin of the High Priest in Zechariah’s passage that is represented here. It is all the sin of Israel, as it were, represented in him, and what befalls the nation, that is the image here. The “filthy clothes” of the High Priest is the familiar symbol of sin before God; and he wears it, just as he wore his sacerdotal dress before God, in his official capacity.

The High Priest was the embodiment of the nation. He stands before the judgment seat, bearing not his own but the people’s sins. This is a for-shadowing of our High Priest, Christ Jesus. He stands bearing all the sin, all the filth, of the world on the cross at Calvary. He is our substitution. He would die for our sin, be buried with our sin, then be raised from the dead cleansed from all our sin and clothed in robes of righteousness. This Christ did for all of mankind. HALLELUJAH!

It is for Satan’s accusations of the Son of Man, our High Priest; it is for Satan’s defiance of truth, that the Scriptures announce…

“The LORD rebuke you Satan.”

Comments Welcome

Shameless; Out Of Control

PRAYING FOR FAMILY, FRIENDS, CHURCH AND NATION

Be alert to false teaching; seek to know and speak the truth of the Gospel (Jude 1:10-13,16). #DefendTheFaith #BeTrueToChristsTeaching #KnowTheTruth

MORNING WATCH NOTES:

Jude closes the section of his letter in a flurry of examples of how false teachers (apostates) in the church are anything but clean, decent, pure, moral, honest or good. They were moreover corrupt, sinful, degenerate and reprobate. They were selfish, greedy, deceitful, full of pride and deny the supernatural.

False teachers in the church represent shameless lives out of control, focused purely on self. They will be judged accordingly. Lord, this sentry is on notice of their presence; my guard is up. I will seek to know and speak truth myself.

Rightly Related To God

PRAYING FOR FAMILY, FRIENDS, CHURCH AND NATION

Be certain you are rightly related to God (Jud 1:5–8,10). #RightlyRelatedToGod #BeDiscerningOfTruth

MORNING WATCH NOTES:

An implied question arises out of the first few verses in Jude: would God really be that hard on false teachers? (ANS is YES!) Jude reminds us, God punished his own people for turning away from their faith (Deu 2:14). Paul points to this as a warning for those who abandon the faith (1Co 10:5–10). Jude goes on to point out that angels who defied heaven and left in rebellion are now imprisoned awaiting eternal judgment (Gen 6:1-6; 2Pe2:4).

Last reminder: Sodom and Gomorrah were destroyed by fire for their immorality and perversion (Gen 19:24). Apostate teachers were/are no different. They are immoral, rebellious and mock the supernatural. They are headed for a fiery end. Lord, I rejoice to know that I am in a right relationship with you. May I be discerning of those who espouse deceitful religious doctrines.

The 5th Column*

PRAYING FOR FAMILY, FRIENDS, CHURCH AND NATION

Be alert & defend against Sin’s tyrannical deceptions; live a life devoted to God (Jude 1:4). #BewareThe5thColumn #Apostasy #Heresey #NoLongerASlaveToSin

MORNING WATCH NOTES:

If I am to “defend the faith“ [core principles of salvation] (v3), what am I defending it from? Jude explains that ungodly people had deceitfully wormed their way into the church [an apostate “5th column”*]. They were teaching, espousing a heresy that used “God’s marvelous grace“ to permit living immoral lives (grace is abundant so have fun, sin the more).

These apostate forces (still at work today) denied the true call of Jesus to righteous, holy living. Paul and others in The New Testament condemned this heresy (eg. Rom 6:12–18). I am alert to Sin’s deception. Sin is no longer master over me. Jesus is my new master. Lord, you have freed me from the Sin master. It is you that I now freely serve.

* A fifth column is any group of people who undermine a larger group from within, usually in favor of an enemy group or nation.

One Immutable Truth

PRAYING FOR FAMILY, FRIENDS, CHURCH AND NATION

Hold fast to the truth, that one “faith” entrusted to you (Jude 1:3). #OneFaith #DefendTheFaith

Truth; Chiseled In Stone

MORNING WATCH NOTES:

Jude further explains “the faith“ I am to defend. It is that faith “entrusted once for all time to God’s people.“ This “faith“ is the one eternal truth given in the gospel – that Christ lived a sinless life and became the sinless sacrifice for all men. In his death he satisfied God’s righteous anger against sin. Christ died that our sin be forgiven. He was buried and raised from the dead to secure men’s eternal life (1Co 15:1-4).

There may be different denominations, but there is only one “faith.” That is the Gospel of Jesus Christ, given “once for all time“ [its chiseled in stone]. Those who claim some “new truth” are false teachers (liars) and lead men away from the truth. Lord, my confidence rests in the sole immutable truth of the Gospel.

“This We’ll Defend”

PRAYING FOR FAMILY, FRIENDS, CHURCH AND NATION

Defend the principles of the Gospel from all attacks (Jude 1:3). #DefendTheFaith

MORNING WATCH NOTES:

I am called to duty, to “defend the faith.” John MacArthur explains this “faith.“ He says, “It’s not describing a subjective act of faith; it’s referring to the content of Christianity, the Gospel, the whole body of doctrine that makes up Gods revelation.” Believers (I) have a duty to defend this “FAITH“ from any false teaching that would minimize its effect or impact.

The U.S. Army motto is, “This We’ll Defend.” What is that? It’s not subjective acts of freedom; it is the content, the whole doctrine of “LIBERTY” and what that means to America, even to the world. The soldier is called upon to defend that liberty from all aggressors.

In the same way, I am called upon to “defend the faith” and all that it means to those who have believed and will believe the Gospel.

Lord, THIS I WILL DEFEND!

Forever Assured

PRAYING FOR FAMILY, FRIENDS, CHURCH AND NATION

Be assured of God’s complete work of grace in your life (Jude 1:1,2). #Grace #Mercy #Peace #Love #GospelAssurance

MORNING WATCH NOTES:

Jude writes to Christians across the centuries. He writes to me. Jude, the brother of Jesus, writes to all who have believed the Gospel. His opening prayer for us (me) is that we stand firm in the Gospel call of God, our father, who secures us by his Son, by the Shepherd’s care of Jesus.

Jude prays that we would receive more mercy, peace and love. That is, the supply of mercy for our sin, peace for our anxieties and love for our conditional acceptance of others is full, abundant and never ending. Whatever our need for mercy, peace and love, it is in eternal supply. Lord, I have no fear of slipping from your grasp or falling short of the Gospel attributes of faith and action.

What Will Transform A Nation?

PRAYING FOR FAMILY, FRIENDS, CHURCH AND NATION

Seek to experience and live out the transforming power of the Gospel (Jude 1:1). #TransformingPower #TheGospelTruth

MORNING WATCH NOTES:

Jude is considered to be, along with James his brother, a half brother to Jesus. This is interesting in that at one point these brothers were both skeptics (Jhn 7:3–5), thought Jesus was mentally off (Mrk 3:21). Yet, we find them in the Upper Room with their mother, Mary (mother of Jesus) at Pentecost after the resurrection (Acts 1:14).

Jude humbly recognizes his true place in the life of Christ – “a servant.” He and his brother James went from skeptics to leaders in the early church. This is nothing short of the transforming power of the Gospel. Lord, my faith to continue to pray and witness rests in the power of the Gospel to transform people and nations.

Knot So Tangled

“Then I said, ‘I take joy in doing your will, my God, for your instructions are written on my heart.’” ‭‭(Psalms‬ ‭40:8‬ ‭NLT‬‬)

MORNING WATCH NOTES:

When I began my “Spiritual R&R” on July 29, twenty-one days ago, I did not know the Gordian Knot of perplexity that I would face. I did not know how desperately I would need to create some space and time in my life for God to speak to my heart.

Within a couple of days of beginning my Spiritual R&R, I ran headlong into a spiritual dilemma (God knows our need even before we ask – Mat 6:8). It was not life-threatening. Nor would I call it a crisis. It was simply a matter of untangling some things in my life and finding the assurance of God’s will. It led me through 21 days of prayer, counsel and searching in God’s word.

I did not expect the dilemma. Nor did I expect from where or how the answer would come. But I can say with all certainty that our God is a mighty and all-knowing God. There is no knot in life so complex that God cannot untangle. There is no dilemma that I face for which God has not already prepared the path forward.

THE TAKE AWAY?

I didn’t really understand the need or the prompting in my heart from God to step back from my normal routine of reading God’s word and prayer. I needed to draw more deeply from his well. My confession is this: I know that if I am obedient to God, he will always see me through. I’m a better man for it. ALWAYS!

On A Spiritual “R & R”

When I served in Vietnam (1968-69), I was sent on a time of “R & R” (Rest and Recuperation). It was necessary to avoid what they call “battle fatigue.” The soldier leaves the field of battle temporarily, to rest and restore the mind, body and soul.

The Bible calls us to times of Spiritual R&R (Repent & Refresh). That is what happens in revival:

“Jesus said, ‘Come away to a deserted place all by yourselves and rest a while.’ For many were coming and going, and they had no leisure even to eat.” – Mark 6:31

Peter said, “Therefore repent and return, so that your sins may be wiped away, in order that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord;” -Acts 3:19

Isaiah, “For thus said the Lord God, the Holy One of Israel, ‘In returning and rest you shall be saved; in quietness and in trust shall be your strength.’ But you were unwilling,” – Isaiah 30:15

God’s word teaches me that “times of refreshing” come from God when I “willingly” step away from the battle and travel deep into renewal territory. Some call this a directed retreat. It is a time set aside intentionally to sit before God with an open Bible, an open mind and heart and listen to him. To repent of anything that interrupts my relationship with him and be quiet before him.

I never know when God might lead me into a Spiritual R&R, or for how long I might be in such an R&R. It has been at least a year since my last one. It was about ten days to two weeks long .

About a month ago some dear friends invited us to the Texas Hill Country for a stay with them. Then, a week ago, God spoke to me and said, “Son, I want you to step away and refocus on me.”

I said, “Yes, Sir.”

So, the exhortation and the opportunity to step away for a Spiritual R&R have led me to do just that.

I am writing so you will know that This BLOG will be silent for a period. But be assured, this prayer sentry may be absent from this prayer post, but not absent from the war. I will look forward to returning as soon as God gives me leave to do so.

“Walk The Talk”

PRAYING FOR FAMILY, FRIENDS, CHURCH AND NATION

Seek to maintain a pure heart with God (Jer 9:25,26). #WalkTheTalk #BeWhatYouProclaim

MORNING WATCH NOTES:

Originally, for the Jew, circumcision was done as a sign of their Covenant with God. It reflected for them their obedience to God, their dedication to God (Gen 17:9–14). Paul, the Hebrew scholar, taught in the New Testament, that circumcision is of no spiritual consequence if a person has no change of heart towards God (Rom 2:28,29).

In Jeremiah, God was saying the same thing to his rebellious people. They followed the outward expressions of ritual (the letter of the law). But inwardly their hearts were far from God. They were no doubt appalled that Jeremiah would say they were no different than every other sinful pagan nation around them. In judgment, God would not discriminate between them.

Lord, what the prayer sentry says or does by rote/ritual won’t deliver him/her from judgment, but the condition of our heart towards you.

The Dawn Of “Mourning”

PRAYING FOR FAMILY, FRIENDS, CHURCH AND NATION

May there be godly sorrow for sin, a turning to God for mercy, justice and righteousness (Jer 9:17–24). #GodlySorrow #Repentance #JusticeAndMercy

MORNING WATCH NOTES:

The dawn of real mourning is rising upon Judah. Her unconfessed sin has led to God’s discipline/judgment:

1) The people must leave their land. Homes have been destroyed and children are cut down in their youth – they no longer play in the streets. There is no more gathering of young men in the market square.

2) Dead bodies will be left scattered everywhere and no one will be left to bury them.

3) But, the righteous shall be gathered together. Their boast will be in the unfailing love, justice and righteousness of the Lord.

At the end of God’s judgment is the hand of God reaching out to those who put their faith in him. This is the delight of God.

Today America is being overrun with an insurgence of unwarrantable people (many who wish to do us harm). Drugs, violence and declining birth rates are destroying our children. The market squares (businesses) are being gutted, looted and destroyed, taking her economy down with it.

Judgment/discipline is coming upon my beloved country. Wealth is being decimated by the decisions of the powerful. The poor and weak are being devastated by radical social and economic policies. All the while, this beloved country boasts in her power, might and independence. She worships at the altar of self-reliance and serves other gods (who are no gods). She is selling out to her enemies and thumbing her nose at the God of her forefathers; the God who made her good and made her great.

The Dawn of Mourning,” judgment of arrogance and godlessness is on the horizon. But for those faithful to Jehovah-God there will be an unfolding of mercy, justice and righteousness. They will understand that God delights in such things. They will see hope in the midst of devastation.

Oh, to be counted among those faithful. May those faithful grow in numbers every day. May this great land know the dawning of a spiritual awakening of national proportions. May revival spread like a great prairie fire across our land. Oh Lord, make it so!

“Ghosted”*

PRAYING FOR FAMILY, FRIENDS, CHURCH AND NATION

May we heed every call to repentance; live faithfully for God (Jer 9:10–16). #TheHighCostOfAbandoningGod #Ghosted #TurnNowToGod #Repentance

MORNING WATCH NOTES:

God set in motion a plan for his people (using the pagan nation, Babylon) to bring severe judgment and discipline upon them (Jeremiah weeps bitterly). The land of Judah will be made a desolate wilderness and Jerusalem a heap of ruins. No one will go there or travel there. It will be a ghost town.

“Why?“ God asks. He answers – because his people had abandoned him, broke their promises to him. They went their own stubborn way and worshiped Baal gods (who are no gods). God would scatter them to places they never heard of. It is a tragic and frightening thing for any people (nation) to turn their backs on God.

Lord, may every prayer sentry (their beloved nation) take seriously any daily call to repentance and live faithfully for you.

* Ghosted (an Urban definition): – a term used to describe when a person closely known to another, stops taking their calls and answering their texts. These actions are usually preceded by many a broken promise to “hang out,” be friendly or romantically attached or “catch up” on the part of the “Ghoster.” Such was God to Judah after their many broken promises to follow him.

The Trouble With Lying

PRAYING FOR FAMILY, FRIENDS, CHURCH AND NATION

May our hearts be truthful to ourselves, to God and to others (Jer 9:3-9). #ToTellTheTruth

MORNING WATCH NOTES:

I am trying to answer the question, why is lying such an offense to God? Most of the culture of Judah (and ours today) had no problem with lying. But God sees lying as tragic and sinful. Some definitions for lying helped me to begin to understand why God hates lying so much: cheating, thwarting, subverting, exaggerating, perversion, sneaky, dishonesty, faithless, defrauding, deceitful, falsehood, misleading, double-dealing, misrepresenting, diluted, full of guile, two-faced, unreliable, tricky, shifty.

But the word that got my attention was, “prevarication.“ It means to straddle; it comes from a word meaning, “to bend outwards or bow-legged.“ The Hebrew word used here reveals “lying” as to bend (note v3), to be crooked (Jeremiah uses this word more than any other OT book) Ultimately it means to shape or bend our words in such a way as to deceive and/or hurt others. It is this intention of the heart that so raises God’s ire. That is why “truth telling” is included as a criterion for entering into worship of God (Psm 24:3-6). “Truth,” according to God, “will set you free” (Jhn 8:31,32).

Lord, this ol’ sentry has known his share of “lying” days. May it now and forever be that a heart of truth be my greatest asset with God and man.

Lying Lips

PRAYING FOR FAMILY, FRIENDS, CHURCH AND NATION

May our lips know only the truth; may we be discerning of truth (Jer 9:3-9). #TellTheTruth #WhereAreTheTruthTellers

MORNING WATCH NOTES:

In the larger scheme of things, it seems like “lying” would be way down on the list of things that offend God. But lying is an abomination to God (Pro 12:22). Judah, God’s people, were slanderous, stood against the truth, were untrustworthy, defrauding, scheming and conniving against friends and family. They were good at lying, stacking lie upon lie and refused to acknowledge God. God asks, “How can I not bring judgment on this behavior?”

People often have a problem with telling the truth (not just politicians). We lie because it is in our nature to lie. Lying is the way we deflect blame and responsibility for our own sin and wrong doing. We lie to give ourselves the advantage. Our lies will often mean someone else is intentionally harmed. Lies deny others the benefit of knowing the truth. How will God not judge any nation that breeds a culture of lying? Lord, may my lips know only truth.

The Lord Victorious

“Lion of Judah” The Lord our God

Yesterday I was speaking on the phone with a dear friend from California. He was telling me about several mutual friends who were and are facing life threatening and debilitating illnesses. We spoke of our compassion for them; what long time friends they have been. But my friend who is normally pretty positive seemed troubled in his soul.

Our conversation then slipped into a brief discussion of the direction of our beloved nation. Of course, how one feels about America today depends entirely on one’s perspective and persuasion. The problem however, is not perspective. It is that there is so much animosity and vitriol between neighbors. We do not trust one another. So, whoever is in the minority becomes TERRIFIED of what will happen to us as a nation if the “other side,” the antagonists if you will, have the power.

ALWAYS,

one or the other of us is

TERRIFIED!

The whole conversation haunted me all day yesterday and into the night. This morning I awoke with a lingering pain in my heart over our conversation. Over dear friends who are facing dyer Illnesses. Over my friend and his deep compassion for other troubled souls. Over our beloved nation that is so divided.

“Lord, I need a little healing balm this morning, a little comfort.”

This is what God said to me:

The common enemy in all our devastation, whether it is sicknesses or political ideology, is the ruler of this world. It is Satan himself. He is the enemy of the body. He is the enmity between men. He is the perpetrator of sickness and the source of all our division, fears and terror.

This verse came to me. “My enemies [Satan is the real enemy] trample on me all day long, for many attack me proudly [sickness may attack me without mercy]. [BUT] When I am afraid, I put my trust in you. In God, whose word I praise, in God I trust; I SHALL NOT BE AFRAID. What can flesh do to me?” – Psalm‬ ‭56:2-4‬ ‭

The Lord spoke to me further…

…“So have no fear of them, for nothing is covered that will not be revealed, or hidden that will not be known. What I tell you in the dark, say in the light, and what you hear whispered, proclaim on the housetops.”

“And do not fear those who [or that which] kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell. Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? And not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father. But even the hairs of your head are all numbered.”

“Fear not, therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows. So everyone who acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven, but whoever denies me before men, I also will deny before my Father who is in heaven.” – Matthew‬ ‭10:26-33‬ ‭

So, this morning I am taking my stand against every weapon of Satan that might be fashioned against me, my friend, our other mutual hurting friends and my “neighbor” who may think differently than I.

I am declaring that the enemy of every man, woman and child is Satan. I will pray for the sick and bereaved. I will pray for my neighbor – no matter what the ideology, race or gender. I can declare that Satan is a liar and a deceiver of all men. He may even deceive the very elect of God. But let it be known today by the word of God that the enemy is exposed for who he is. May one prayer set thousands of Satan’s emissaries in this world to flight. May many prayers of the Saints set hundreds of thousands to flight.

The Lord declares it.

May we believe it.

May we declare it ourselves.

THE LORD OR GOD IS VICTORIOUS !!!

“Everybody, Lies A Little”

PRAYING FOR FAMILY, FRIENDS, CHURCH AND NATION

May we always speak the truth in life (Jer 9:3) #BeATruthTeller

MORNING WATCH NOTES:

So what is the big deal with lying? According to blues musician, B.B. King, “Everybody, Lies A Little.“ The people of Judah were a lying people. They took a stand against the truth. The people of our modern culture, think some lying is okay. Lying is common. It comes natural. [Ever notice how a child needs no instruction on the art of lying?] Yet, it is listed with the “really bad” things, like immorality, stealing, murder and dishonoring God.

Lying is a sin against God (v 9; also, Pro 12:22). it is the opposite of the truth. It goes against all for which God stands. Lying is, according to the NIV translation of the Bible, the native language of the Devil (Jhn 8:44). A French national speaks French. The Devil is from Hell, where the native language is Lying. That is the Devil’s “go to” language. He doesn’t have to think about it. That is just his language. He lies. As humans born into sin, our native language is lying. Only a true relationship with God can change our sin nature and make us truth tellers.