Monday, January 18, 2010

New Thru30 Weekly Thought #2

New Thru 30 Week 2.
Yeehaw! One week done. How many of you were like me and needed a grace day to catch up?
You will read the second Gospel (Mark) and several of the Epistles, or letters. Keep in mind that each letter was originally written to a different audience and was trying to communicate a different point. For example, James was written to Jewish Believers who had gone too far with ignoring the law of God, while Galatians was written to Gentile converts who were being told that they needed to adhere to the Jewish law. There is strong language in both letters and both letters are completely true for us today.

Daily Key Verses:
Day 1: Mark 8:34-35
Day 2: James 2:14-17
Day 3: 1 Corinthians 8:9
Day 4: 2 Corinthians 8:10-12
Day 5: Romans 8:1-4

Keep reading. Don't Give Up!


FEARLESS 03: Benaiah Follow Up

Feeling FEARLESS? Week three of the series has passed and the stories of God raising up and backing up His people keep coming. It is awesome to see holy boldness in action. Give a listen to the podcast and then work through some of these questions. Or if you want to just do the questions, then go for it. There are some discussion type questions in here so why not find someone to talk these through with.

1) Who was Benaiah? He was:
• One of the top five soldiers in Israel.
• A General in the Israeli army
• Captain of King David’s bodyguards.
• Benaiah was a lion killer!
2) Lion chasers know that the bigger
their God is the smaller lions become.
3) Lion chasers understand that playing it safe is risky.

• On a scale of 1 (play it safe) to 10 (risk it all) how much of a daredevil were you as a kid?
• What is the riskiest thing you have ever done?

1. What is the lion you need to chase and conquer? How did you develop this fear? What ttribute or truth about God do you need to focus, in order to conquer your lion? To chase your lion, you’ll have to take a “first step.” What is the first step you need to take to conquer your fear?
2. Our God is the Indescribable One. Though none of us have words to explain His goodness, try. Who is God to you? “My God is . . .” If this is who we truly believe God is, why are we afraid of the lions in our life?
3. When is taking a risk foolish and when is it honoring to God? Where in your life are you playing it safe? What are you trying to protect? If we are to experience God for who He truly is, we must take risks. What risk are you willing to take in order to trust Christ as your only source of power and life? (see Philippians 3: 8-10) What doubts do you need to overcome?
4. In the near future, over what battle would you like God to cause you to be victorious? Do you feel like you are fighting any battles all by yourself? In what way can we, as a LifeGroup, provide reinforcements?
5. If your funeral was this week, how would others describe your relationship and service to your King? For what do you want to be remembered? What kind of spiritual legacy do you want to leave your children or grandchildren? In what areas of your life would your family say you were “fearless”?

1. Name your lion(s) and face your fears. Honestly acknowledge your fears to God and ask Him to help you overcome any unbelief. What truth about God do you need to focus on this week? Each time you are confronted by your lion, shift the focus of your thoughts to how big and awesome your God is and watch your lion shrink.
2. Where in your life have you been playing it safe? What first steps are you willing to take this week? What do you need to risk, long term, in order to accomplish God’s purpose in this area? Ask your Life Support Group to pray for you as you take your first steps towards conquering your fears.
3. Write you own psalm describing how big your God is to you, personally. You might incorporate some of your favorite promises. For example: “My God is always faithful. He will never, ever leave me or forsake me.” (Hebrews 13:5b) “My God is powerful and mighty. Nothing is too difficult for Him.” (Jeremiah 32:17)

1. Read about other mighty heroes of faith in Hebrews 11:1-3, 6-12, 32-39.
• What is faith according to Hebrews 11:1 and 6? Why is faith so important to God? What does God tell us about the creation of the world? (v 3) How are we to understand or accept what we cannot see? What role does faith play in our relationship with God? (v 6)
• List each hero, the risk he/she took, and the victory experienced. What did they believe about God? Put yourself in their shoes. What fears would you need to overcome in order to trust in God as they did?
• How does this passage disprove the idea that faith always leads to earthly blessing? (vv 35-38) What truth about God do you need to believe in order to trust Him and take risks even if you don’t receive an earthly reward or blessing? Why does the author of Hebrews say that “the world was not worthy of” the heroes of faith mentioned in Hebrews 11:38?
2. Read about Benaiah in 2 Samuel 23:20-23.
• Besides killing a lion, what other heroic deeds did Benaiah accomplish? God had called Benaiah to be a soldier and to serve King David. What do you think made Benaiah a great soldier and leader?
• What has God called you to do, in service to your King Jesus? What is the scariest or most difficult aspect in what God has called you to do? What lion(s) do you need to chase and conquer in order to become all God has created you to be?

John 14:27; 2 Timothy 1:7; Hebrews 11; 2 Corinthians 4:16-18, 5:7; Romans 8:15, 37; Psalm 3:3-6; 56:1-4, 91; Deuteronomy 31:6; Isaiah 12; Daniel 6, 10:19



So there you are, thousands of people chasing after you, screaming for your death. Is it laser tag? No. I'm actually thinking of Pharaoh's army chasing every last one of God's people into extinction in the Red Sea until God turned the tables. This is how Israel praised Him for that salvation.

Exodus 15:11-14, 16, 21 (New Living Translation)

11 "Who is like you among the gods, O LORD—
glorious in holiness,
awesome in splendor,
performing great wonders?
12 You raised your right hand,
and the earth swallowed our enemies.

13 "With your unfailing love you lead
the people you have redeemed.
In your might, you guide them
to your sacred home.
14 The peoples hear and tremble;


16 Terror and dread fall upon them.
The power of your arm
makes them lifeless as stone
until your people pass by, O LORD,
until the people you purchased pass by.


21 "Sing to the LORD,
for he has triumphed gloriously;
he has hurled both horse and rider
into the sea."

We serve a God unlike any other. When faced with death, you can praise him because he leads you with love. Christ has purchased you with His blood, and He will look after His own.


Sunday, January 17, 2010


A long time ago, actually, 2,900 years ago, Elijah was a prophet. During a drought he asked a widow for a drink and a bite to eat. She basically said, "You're nuts! I've only got enough to make for my son and me, and then we're going to die." But, listen to what Elijah says:

1 Kings 17:13-16 (New Living Translation)

13 But Elijah said to her, "Don't be afraid! Go ahead and do just what you've said, but make a little bread for me first. Then use what's left to prepare a meal for yourself and your son. 14 For this is what the LORD, the God of Israel, says: There will always be flour and olive oil left in your containers until the time when the LORD sends rain and the crops grow again!"

15 So she did as Elijah said, and she and Elijah and her son continued to eat for many days. 16 There was always enough flour and olive oil left in the containers, just as the LORD had promised through Elijah.

God still provides just like that.


Saturday, January 16, 2010

Deep Water

You know who I like? The Allstate guy! He's just so reassuring. I mean, maybe in real life he's a well-paid actor for an insurance company that just wants money, but boy does he look reliable. Like the kind of guy you want around when you're in deep water.

Luke 5:4-8, 10-11 (New International Version)

4 [Jesus] said to Simon, "Put out into deep water, and let down the nets for a catch."

5 Simon answered, "Master, we've worked hard all night and haven't caught anything. But because you say so, I will let down the nets."

6 When they had done so, they caught such a large number of fish that their nets began to break. 7 So they signaled their partners in the other boat to come and help them, and they came and filled both boats so full that they began to sink.

8 When Simon Peter saw this, he fell at Jesus' knees and said, "Go away from me, Lord; I am a sinful man!"


10 Then Jesus said to Simon, "Don't be afraid; from now on you will catch men." 11 So they pulled their boats up on shore, left everything and followed him.

That was the start of a beautiful relationship. So when Christ's plans don't make sense, just remember that he will never let you slip through His hands.


Friday, January 15, 2010


Are you a karaoke kid? Well here's a little encouragement to sing!

Ephesians 5:18-19 (New Living Translation)

18 Be filled with the Holy Spirit, 19 singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs among yourselves, and making music to the Lord in your hearts.

So sing it out!


Thursday, January 14, 2010


Leadership in the church is supposed to teach and motivate believers to follow god. In his letter to Titus, Paul tells leaders.

Titus 2:15 (New Living Translation)

You must teach these things and encourage the believers to do them. You have the authority to correct them when necessary, so don’t let anyone disregard what you say.

Hebrews 13:17 (NLT)

Obey your spiritual leaders, and do what they say. Their work is to watch over your souls, and they are accountable to God. Give them reason to do this with joy and not with sorrow. That would certainly not be for your benefit.

As Christians, we got to be accountable to our leaders, because they are accountable to God. Not only that, let's encourage our leaders! Leadership is often difficult--leadership is hard. And leaders need our support and prayers.


Wednesday, January 13, 2010

The Tongue of Power

Words can bring life. Or they can do more damage than sticks and stones.

James 3:2, 6 (New Living Translation)

We all make many mistakes. For if we could control our tongues, we would be perfect and could also control ourselves in every other way.


The tongue is a flame of fire. It is a whole world of wickedness, corrupting your entire body. It can set your whole life on fire, for it is set on fire by hell itself.


Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Lookin' Fabulous!

There is nothing better to clothe yourself in than cashmere--right? Well, actually...

Colossians 3:12-15 (New Living Translation)

12 Since God chose you to be the holy people he loves, you must clothe yourselves with tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. 13 Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others. 14 Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds us all together in perfect harmony. 15 And let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts. For as members of one body you are called to live in peace. And always be thankful.

Did you get all that? Well, while you're getting dressed, put on Romans too:

Romans 13:14 (New Living Translation)

14 Instead, clothe yourself with the presence of the Lord Jesus Christ.

You look fabulous!


Monday, January 11, 2010

New Thru30 Weekly Thought #1

Matthew 16:13 says, "Who do people say the Son of Man is?" & Matthew 16:15 says, "Who do you (my disciples) say I am?"

One of the primary questions being answered by the Gospel testimonies is, "Who is Jesus?" As you read, remember that everything points to the fact that He is the Christ!

Daily Key Verses:
Day 1: Matthew 11:4-6
Day 2: Matthew 27:37-40
Day 3: Matthew 28:18-20
Day 4: Acts 2:42-47
Day 5: Acts 11:25-26

Keep the faith. Don't Give Up!


FEARLESS 02: Shadrach, Meshach & Abednego Follow Up

Feeling FEARLESS? Week two of the series has passed and the stories of God raising up and backing up His people keep coming. It is awesome to see holy boldness in action. Give a listen to the podcast and then work through some of these questions. Or if you want to just do the questions, then go for it. There are some discussion type questions in here so why not find someone to talk these through with.


When your faith is tested by fire:

1) Obey God’s commands instead of man’s expectations.

2) Believe God’s truth instead of the facts.

3) Believe God, don’t just believe in God.


• Who is someone you admire for standing up for what they believe?

• What do you admire most about the three men in this story?


1. What “fiery trials” have you endured that strengthened your faith? Why does God use trials to purify or strengthen our faith in Him? What other purposes does God have for fiery trials?

2. In what areas of life are you most tempted to follow people’s expectations instead of God’s commands? In what areas are you tempted to compromise your convictions? (at work, at home, with finances, with friends, etc.)

How can we gain the faith and courage to not compromise? Pray for one another to have the courage and faith like Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego.

3. What is the difference between believing in God and believing God?

What are you believing God for? Which is more difficult for you: obeying God’s commands, believing God’s truth, trusting God’s plan? How do each of these relate to believing God as opposed to just believing in God?

4. What has been your closest brush with death or disaster? How did God reveal His presence with you during this time? What are you believing God for, regardless of the outcome? How can we continue to trust God even “if He does not” rescue us from the painful circumstances of life? (see Hebrews 13:5-6)

5. Can your faith handle the fire? What would most test your faith in God?

(Loss of a parent or close friend? Persecution? Rejection? Loss of health or possessions? Something else?) How can we develop the kind of faith that will enable us to stand strong when facing fiery trials?

6. Share a time when you stood up for Christ instead of bowing down to man. In what area of your life do you feel God may be calling you to take a stand?

How can we, as a Life Support Group, stand with you and pray for you?


1. What fear has kept you from standing up for Christ? Honestly acknowledge this fear to God and ask Him to help you overcome any unbelief. What truth about God do you need to remember when you’re afraid? Faith is not the absence of fear but the inner confidence that God is with you and for you, no matter what!

2. In what area of your life are you being tempted to compromise your convictions and/or rationalize disobedience? Make a list of the facts, as you know them, and then above this list write what is true about God. Jesus said that “truth sets us free” not the facts. Ask the Lord to remind you of the truth each time you are tempted to make decisions based only on the facts.


1. Read Daniel chapter 3. The theme of the book of Daniel is God’s sovereignty over the kingdoms of men (2:21; 5:21)

• What did Nebuchadnezzar declare about Daniel’s God in chapter 2:45-47?

Why do you think the king later built a golden statue and commanded that it be worshiped? What were the consequences when someone disobeyed the king’s order? Who told the king that Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego refused to bow down to the golden image? What do you think was their motive?

• What was Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego’s response to the king’s command (16-18)? What would you do if you had the choice of bowing before an image of gold or getting thrown into a fiery furnace? What would you be willing to risk in order to remain faithful to the Lord? How fireproof is your faith?

• What miracles did Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego experience as a result of their faith and obedience? Who joined them in the fiery furnace? What impact did this make on Nebuchadnezzar? (vv 27-30) How did God use this fiery trial to display His sovereignty and power?

2. Read 1 Peter 1:6-9. 3:13-18, 4:1-2, 12-14.

• What did Peter say we may have to suffer and why? (1: 6-7) What is the outcome of our faith once it has been tested? How can we know that our faith is genuine? (1:8-9)

• What do you fear most about suffering? How can suffering for doing right be a blessing? What does our response to unjust suffering reveal to others? (3:14-15) How prepared are you to explain your hope in Christ? How does suffering cause us to cease from sin? (4:1-2) Why should we not be surprised by the fiery trials we go through? (4:12-13)


Psalm 91:9-11; Isaiah 43:1-5a, 50:10; Hebrews 10:38-39,11:6, 32-39, 12:2;

James 1:2,13, 2:17; 1 Peter 1:6-9, 4:1-14; James 2:17-24


The Proof Is In The Living

So, you've been going to church, having your own personal matins and maybe doing some Bible readings. . You think you've got this Christian thing down? Well, alright smarty pants, time to prove it

James 3:13-14, 17-18 (New Living Translation)

13 If you are wise and understand God's ways, prove it by living an honorable life, doing good works with the humility that comes from wisdom. 14 But if you are bitterly jealous and there is selfish ambition in your heart, don't cover up the truth with boasting and lying.


17 But the wisdom from above is first of all pure. It is also peace loving, gentle at all times, and willing to yield to others. It is full of mercy and good deeds. It shows no favoritism and is always sincere. 18 And those who are peacemakers will plant seeds of peace and reap a harvest of righteousness.

So, kind of like AA, you need to admit the problems you have to be a peacemaker. I know, it's almost more frustrating knowing what God wants because we're still human, and we still mess up. But don't give up.


Sunday, January 10, 2010

Use Your Powers For Good

College students are awesome at thinking up creative ways to prank one another--like dying the skin of a freshman with drink mix so that students that attend morning classes look like visitors from another planet. The writer of Hebrews talks about using our powers of creative thinking towards a different goal.

Hebrews 10:24 (New Living Translation)

24 Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works.

The result may not be a freshman that looks like an alien, but rather, Christians that live differently. Christians that are walking examples of how to live a different sort of life.


Saturday, January 9, 2010


Ever feel a little awkward?

Ephesians 1:5-6 (New Living Translation)

5 God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. This is what he wanted to do, and it gave him great pleasure. 6 So we praise God for the glorious grace he has poured out on us who belong to his dear Son.

Let's be honest, we're all pretty bizarre, but Jesus is okay with that.


Friday, January 8, 2010

Swords Up

Hebrews 4:12 (New Living Translation)

12 For the word of God is alive and powerful. It is sharper than the sharpest two-edged sword, cutting between soul and spirit, between joint and marrow. It exposes our innermost thoughts and desires.

This is exciting and, well, terrifying. We are accountable to God Who sees everything. The good news is, He gives us His Word to help us see ourselves how He does.


Thursday, January 7, 2010

Relax, He's Here To Help

You know how it is when you're driving along and a cop drives up behind you. You start checking your speed and your seatbelt, feeling nervous because you're sure you've done something wrong.

Colossians 1:19-23 (New Living Translation)

19 For God in all his fullness
was pleased to live in Christ,
20 and through him God reconciled
everything to himself.
He made peace with everything in heaven and on earth
by means of Christ's blood on the cross.
21 This includes you who were once far away from God. You were his enemies, separated from him by your evil thoughts and actions. 22 Yet now he has reconciled you to himself through the death of Christ in his physical body. As a result, he has brought you into his own presence, and you are holy and blameless as you stand before him without a single fault.

23 But you must continue to believe this truth and stand firmly in it.

God isn't a cop, and through Him, everything you've done is made right!


Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Family Plan

k, these first verses, were probably some of the hardest verses to memorize when I was a kid--it was like a tongue-twister. But now that I'm older, these are some of the most mind-blowing words ever written.

John 1:1-4, 10-14 (New Living Translation)

1 In the beginning the Word already existed.
The Word was with God,
and the Word was God.
2 He existed in the beginning with God.
3 God created everything through him,
and nothing was created except through him.
4 The Word gave life to everything that was created,
and his life brought light to everyone.


10 He came into the very world he created, but the world didn't recognize him. 11 He came to his own people, and even they rejected him. 12 But to all who believed him and accepted him, he gave the right to become children of God. 13 They are reborn--not with a physical birth resulting from human passion or plan, but a birth that comes from God.

14 So the Word became human and made his home among us.

God--THE God--became a man, became one of us so that we could become His children and live with Him forever? Sign me up!


Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Seek The Lord

Got a beautiful little passage from Isaiah for you today.

Isaiah 55:6-9 (New Living Translation)

6 Seek the LORD while you can find him.
Call on him now while he is near.
7 Let the wicked change their ways
and banish the very thought of doing wrong.
Let them turn to the LORD that he may have mercy on them.
Yes, turn to our God, for he will forgive generously.

8 "My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts," says the LORD.
"And my ways are far beyond anything you could imagine.
9 For just as the heavens are higher than the earth,
so my ways are higher than your ways
and my thoughts higher than your thoughts.

What better way to start the year than with your daily dose of the Bible.


Monday, January 4, 2010

New Thru30

Here comes a challenge for the new year and for the new decade. This will not be an easy thing to accomplish but the benefits will far outweigh the sacrifice.

Starting Sunday January 10th we are going to dive into reading the entire New Testament in 30 days. The reading plan has been designed to walk through the New Testament chronologically. That means you will be reading books of the New Testament in the general order that they were written. There are also built in two grace days a week so that you will have time to rest (or catch up).

If that sounds too intense then just make it 60 days.

This is going to be a life changing experience for all those who commit to the process and keep up with the plan.

(If you would like the reading plan then just let me know and provide me with an email address to send it to)

Happy New Year! Happy New Decade!
Don't Give Up. Start Well!


FEARLESS 01: Gideon Follow Up

Battles are inevitable but victory is not. We often find ourselves fighting enemies that are stronger than we are. So how do you stand fearless when there's so much at stake? Be inspired by accounts from God's word about average people who became champions and overcame insurmountable odds. Do you have what it takes? Experience "FEARLESS" to find out once and for all.

Take a listen to week one and then work through these thoughts by yourself or with some friends. You can even just work through the study without listening to the podcast if you really want. :)


What are some success philosophies that are popular today?

Share a time when you experienced God’s strength through your weakness?


1. Graham defined a “practical atheist” as a person who believes in God but lives as if God doesn’t exist. In what area of your life are you dangerously tempted to be a practical atheist?

2. God saw Gideon as a mighty warrior. Gideon saw himself as weak and one of the least? What are some wrong beliefs about yourself that God is helping you to overcome? What does God say about you in His Word?

What would it look like in your behavior if you believed what God says instead of your feelings, weaknesses or circumstances?

3. What promises did God make to Gideon? (see Judges 6:12,14,16,22) What does Gideon’s questions reveal about why he lacked trust in God? (6:13-15)

What circumstances in your life make it difficult for you to trust God?

4. What battle are you facing today that gives you cause for concern? What has fear kept you from doing that God wants you to do? What are you going to do about it? What risks are you willing to make in order to experience God’s strength and sufficiency?

5. In what way was Gideon just an average guy with common fears and weaknesses?

In what ways can you relate to Gideon? Where are you uncertain,

cautious or afraid of God’s will or calling for your life? What are some of your negative absolutes? In what way are you feeling weak and outnumbered?


1. What has fear kept you from doing that God is calling you to do? Address your fears by honestly acknowledging to God your mistrust of Him. Be honest about any wrong beliefs about yourself and any negative absolutes that you have believed. Begin rejecting these thoughts and replacing them

with what God says. Build up your faith in God by focusing on His promises, His character and His past faithfulness.

2. How has depending on your own sufficiency or focusing on your weaknesses, kept you from experiencing God’s strength? What risk does God want you to take in order to experience His strength through your weakness? When thinking or speaking of your

weaknesses or your negative circumstances, end your thought with but God . . . Example: I feel weak and inadequate but God is my adequacy ( 2 Cor.3:5-6).


1. Read Judges 6.

• Prior to Gideon saving the day, what was the situation in Israel? (vv1-6)

What did the oppressed and fearful Israelites do? (v7) How did God respond?

(vv7-10) What did the Lord declare to Gideon? How did he respond?

What questions did Gideon ask the Lord? What do Gideon’s questions reveal about his fears?

• Make a list of all the Lord’s declarations and promises to Gideon. Which of these promises apply to us today? How difficult is it for you to simply take God at His Word and trust His promises? Why is God’s word sometimes not enough to convince us to trust God?

• What fleeces (signs) did Gideon put out to test the Lord? When have you tried the “fleece” method of determining God’s will? What was the result?

Like Gideon, were you tempted to do it again?

• In one night, Gideon tore down an alter to the false god, Baal, built another and made sacrifices to the true God. What role do you think this played in the defeat of the Midionites? What would you like to “tear down” in your life?

What would you like to “build up” to the glory of God?

2. Read Judges chapter 7 through chapter 8 verse one.

• Why did God want to reduce the size of Gideon’s army? What significance does God’s method of selecting the 300 man army have? Why did God choose the men that lapped water? What was God trying to teach Gideon?

• Why did God have Gideon spy on the enemy’s camp? (vv9-12) How did God confirm for Gideon that he had truly heard from God? What means has God used to encourage and build up your faith?


Deuteronomy 6:13-19; Judges 6-8:1; Psalm 56:2-4; Isaiah 43:1-5


I Must Become Less

If Jesus was the main event, John was the opening act. He warmed up the crowd, but now it was time to turn over the spotlight to Jesus.

John 3:26-30 (New Living Translation)

26 So John's disciples came to him and said, "Rabbi, the man you met on the other side of the Jordan River, the one you identified as the Messiah, is also baptizing people. And everybody is going to him instead of coming to us."

27 John replied, "No one can receive anything unless God gives it from heaven. 28 You yourselves know how plainly I told you, 'I am not the Messiah. I am only here to prepare the way for him.' 29 It is the bridegroom who marries the bride, and the best man is simply glad to stand with him and hear his vows. Therefore, I am filled with joy at his success. 30 He must become greater and greater, and I must become less and less.

John understood that if he tried to hold on to the spotlight, people would be looking at him, not Jesus.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

The Torch

It's the passing of the torch.

Matthew 3:13-17 (New Living Translation)

13 Then Jesus went from Galilee to the Jordan River to be baptized by John. 14 But John tried to talk him out of it. "I am the one who needs to be baptized by you," he said, "so why are you coming to me?"

15 But Jesus said, "It should be done, for we must carry out all that God requires." So John agreed to baptize him.

16 After his baptism, as Jesus came up out of the water, the heavens were opened and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and settling on him. 17 And a voice from heaven said, "This is my dearly loved Son, who brings me great joy."


Saturday, January 2, 2010

Jesus' Birth Afterparty

Well, the presents have been unwrapped and if you're like me, you're finishing off the last 18 Christmas cookies. Things are really starting to slow down. Maybe, after Jesus' birth, things really started to slow down...? Wait, I can't back that up.

Matthew 2:7-12 (New Living Translation)

7 Then Herod called for a private meeting with the wise men, and he learned from them the time when the star first appeared. 8 Then he told them, "Go to Bethlehem and search carefully for the child. And when you find him, come back and tell me so that I can go and worship him, too!"

9 After this interview the wise men went their way. And the star they had seen in the east guided them to Bethlehem. It went ahead of them and stopped over the place where the child was. 10 When they saw the star, they were filled with joy! 11 They entered the house and saw the child with his mother, Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasure chests and gave him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh.

Herod was a sneaky jerk--in my humble opinion--but the wise men knew this Child was so much more than a tiny baby boy. I guess that's why they called them the wise men. I'm wondering about their gifts though--you ever smelled frankincense? It's a little weird.


Friday, January 1, 2010


Mary wasn't the only one expecting. Shortly after Jesus was born, she and Joseph took the newborn Jesus to the temple and were met by an old man named Simeon.

Luke 2:28-35 (New Living Translation)

28 Simeon was there. He took the child in his arms and praised God, saying,

29 "Sovereign Lord, now let your servant die in peace,
as you have promised.
30 I have seen your salvation,
31 which you have prepared for all people.
32 He is a light to reveal God to the nations,
and he is the glory of your people Israel!"

33 Jesus' parents were amazed at what was being said about him. 34 Then Simeon blessed them, and he said to Mary, the baby's mother, "This child is destined to cause many in Israel to fall, but he will be a joy to many others. He has been sent as a sign from God, but many will oppose him. 35 As a result, the deepest thoughts of many hearts will be revealed. And a sword will pierce your very soul."

Have you met the Saviour yet?