But the word of God continued to spread and flourish. Acts 12:24
Throughout the history of the world there have been different things that have spread and appeared as though they would never stop.
Empires spread across the world as though to conquer the entire world. Viruses have spread across nations or the world, appearing to destroy everyone and everything. Draught has spread, leaving a lot of disaster in its path.
Although many things have spread widely and sometimes rapidly, all of these things have come to an end. They only flourished for a time.
As the church was going through extreme persecution, the word of God kept spreading and flourishing.
At the time a major disaster strikes, it does not appear as if it will ever end. With the finite mind and eyes of man, most do not see any hope or light at the end of the tunnel.
Believers looking at this world will see that evil is on the rise. More and more evil is being done and accepted. America, as a whole, has turned itself away from Godly principles to sin. Persecution of Christians is on the rise, getting worse all the time.
Yet, despite this rise in evil, God’s word is still alive and active. It is flourishing in the hearts of men and women who read it and make it a part of their lives. His word is changing lives, even today under great evil.
People are seeing God do great works in and through them. They have the hope that God’s word and promises provide that God will win the war in the end.
During the time a believer keeps his eyes and hearts upon God and His word, he will have hope. He will be able to see what God is doing and is going to do.
Every day you may have some struggles and see that, what appears to be, the world is winning the war. Stop and take a moment to read God’s word. Allow God’s word to penetrate your heart and see what God can do in you.
Now share that word with someone else. God can use it to change the hearts and lives of other people. His word will continue to spread, if you allow it to do so in your life, the lives of others around you and in the world.
Today I pray that you will know Jesus as your Savior; that you will know God’s word for your life; that you will spread God’s word everywhere you go; that you will see God’s word spreading and flourishing; and that many will believe God’s word to them.
Title: Unmuzzled: Escaping Sexual Sin, Satan’s Grip On Men
Author: J S Shelton
Publisher: J S Shelton
Unmuzzled: Escaping Sexual Sin, Satan’s Grip On Men (book review)
One of the most common struggles that men have, both in the church and outside the church is with sexual sins. The author begins the book describing his life experiences on how he was muzzled by Satan with sexual sins. He reveals how it started out with just some thoughts and later led to actions.
Shelton calls it a muzzling, because when a Christian man falls into sexual sin, he does not want to talk about it or even admit it to anyone. Satan holds him captive to the sin.
Once this sin is admitted, he shows what the Bible says on how to get away from it. He points out how God always makes a way to get away from sexual temptations, but that a person must be willing to accept and choose that path. In the process of choosing God’s path, it takes the muzzle off of the man and allows him to talk about it and change, rejecting the temptations.
The acronym that he uses to help one remember the steps is: S.A.F.E. Stay away. Flee. Escape.
One of the things that I really enjoy about this book is the amount he uses scriptures for all of his points and calls to action. Not only does he use scripture, but he applies it to every day life of most people.
Shelton is a husband and father who has struggled with sexual sin to an extreme degree, but has been set free by the power of God’s word and Holy Spirit guiding him. His desire is to set other men free from being muzzled by Satan with this sin.
This book is a simple read, without any high level, college speaking. He asks many questions and calls for action in each chapter. Each chapter is only a few pages, so it makes for short time to read a chapter and give you time to think and act on what you read.
Whether you struggle with this sin or not, I highly suggest reading it. It can help you overcome it, if you struggle, or it can help you help someone else that is struggling with this sin.
So watch yourselves. If your brother or sister sins against you, rebuke them; and if they repent, forgive them. Even if they sin against you seven times in a day and seven times come back to you saying ‘I repent,’ you must forgive them. Luke 17:3-4
Many people in the world look for ways to get revenge against someone who did them wrong. They do not seek reasons to forgive, but to punish.
People feel as if they have the right to get vengeance for things done wrong. The more the punishment, the more pleased they are.
Jesus tells the people to be willing to forgive someone. If a person sins, he is to be rebuked, then if he repents, he is to be forgiven, regardless of how many times he sins in a day.
Forgiving someone is something many people in the church struggle with doing. They will act as the world does in wanting a person punished rather than forgiven.
It begins when a person sins or hurts one and that person does not reach out to point out what occurred. The one who did wrong is not given a chance to repent, and then when he does repent, he is often not forgiven. Just like the world, many seek vengeance rather than forgiveness.
Every believer must remember how many times Jesus has already forgiven them for all their sins against Him. God never turns away or rebukes someone who has repented, He forgives immediately.
If Jesus is willing to forgive, every believer must be willing to forgive those who repent of doing something wrong. Only if a person does not repent, does a believer not have to forgive.
Forgiving someone shows God’s love to that person and to others watching. It is revealing who God and what He is like.
Just like Jesus was sinned against, there have been people who have sinned against you. Be willing to go to that person and point out what was done wrong. Give the person a chance to repent, just as God gives you opportunities to repent.
If the person repents, then be willing to forgive them, just as Jesus has forgiven you. Do not hold on to bitterness, anger and vengeance against someone, but release it to God.
Remember how many times God has already forgiven you and will continue to forgive you when you repent. Do the same to others.
Today I pray that you will know Jesus as your Savior; that God will give you strength to confront those who have harmed you; that you will have God’s love to forgive those who repent; and that you will be a testimony of God’s love and forgiveness to others.