John 18:36 No Physical Fight

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Jesus said, “My kingdom is not of this world. If it were, my servants would fight to prevent my arrest by the Jewish leaders. But now my kingdom is from another place.” John 18:36

Jesus had been arrested and was going through a trial. The leaders did not believe that He was who He said He was. They were asking Him if He was the king of the Jews. Jesus points out that His kingdom is not one of this earth, it was not a physical kingdom, but one from somewhere else.

There has been times that Christians have been known to be violent in standing up for Christ. During the middle centuries, the church went on crusades in order to kill of the believers of false religions. It was a physical effort to build God’s kingdom on this earth.

In more recent times, there have been some “Christians” who have been extremely violent against unbelievers. Some have been known for blowing up abortion centers in an attempt to stop the sin going on there. In the process people are killed and not given the chance to believe in Jesus and change.

Jesus did not use any physical violence in the process of building His kingdom. He never harmed any person, no matter how good or bad that person was. His method of building His kingdom was using love.

Love is something that is not of this world. This world is ruled by the devil, who does not believe in love other than the love of self. The world claims to show love, but it is selfishness and hate for others.

People will not be won over to Jesus, by striking them and cutting them down. They can only be won over by showing love, mercy, and grace. These are the very same things that Jesus showed you.

The kingdom of God is from heaven. It is filled with love, not violence. You do not need to use force to get people into His kingdom.

Jesus did not need physical protection, because He was in God’s hands. In the same way, you do not need physical protection. You are in God’s hands and are of a different world.

Since you are from a different world, the ways of doing things are different. Live the life of love, mercy and grace as you reach out to build God’s kingdom, not force.

I pray today that you will know God’s love for all people; that you will use God’s love to reach the lost; that you will not fight in the physical against this world; and that God will strengthen you to show His love to this world.

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John 3:17 Not To Condemn

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For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. John 3:17

Condemnation is something that runs very high in this world. It occurs regardless of whether a person is a believer or not. People blame others for what happens and condemns their actions.

People are quick to look at the Old Testament laws and how some required death. Then they apply that to the entire Bible and are quick to condemn other people. Or non-believers will believe that all the Bible does is condemn them.

Believers will often read the bible and grab onto teachings against sin, then they will point out those sins in the lives of others. When they see those sins, they are fast to condemn a person as a non-believer and going to hell. They focus on speaking against the sin, rather than pointing out God’s willingness to forgive and showing His great love.

While it is true that a person who does not believe in or follow Jesus is on a path to hell, Jesus never went around condemning people to hell. His entire purpose of His life and ministry was to save people. He wanted to point out what God has done for them. The only people Jesus was harsh with, were the people who claimed to be believers in God, yet did not follow Him and even fought against Him.

If a believer just points out sin and that a person is going to hell, but never points to Jesus and His love, there will be little expectation that the non-believer will ever change. There is no love to draw him to Jesus.

The only time Jesus is going to do condemnation is when He returns to wipe out all sin for all time. At that point people who do not follow Him will be condemned for all eternity. Until then, His focus is to seek and save the lost. God wants every person to be saved.

When you are speaking to others, you need to be like Jesus. Put away all condemnation. Point out God’s great love and mercy. Present Jesus to the people so that they can be saved.

Allow God to choose when and how a person is condemned. You do the work of bringing people to Jesus to be saved.

How many can be saved through your testimony of love?

I pray today that you will know God’s love for the lost; that you will not speak condemnation on anyone; that you will present God’s love and mercy to this world; and that many will know Jesus through your words and actions.

Luke 22:50-51 No More Violence

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And one of them struck the servant of the high priest, cutting off his right ear. But Jesus answered, “No more of this!” And he touched the man’s ear and healed him. Luke 22:50-51

Jesus and the disciples had been in the garden praying. Judas had left and got the high priest to arrest Jesus. As the high priest and some soldiers came to arrest Jesus, one of the disciples draws his sword and cuts off the ear of a servant. Jesus stops him heals the servant’s ear.

When a person is getting arrested, it is very common to see him fight back and resist the arrest. People do not want to get arrested. In the process of resisting the arrest, often it can get very violent. Often innocent bystanders are the ones who get hurt the most.

People will fight arrest even more when they are innocent of doing anything wrong.

They will even fight for someone else who is innocent and getting arrested. Jesus had been completely innocent and one of the disciples decided to fight for Him. However, that was not the way Jesus wanted things to go. He was willing to be arrested.

In fact, He needed to be arrested. Getting arrested was a part of God’s plan to have Jesus crucified, which was a part of God’s plan to bring salvation to the world.

There are times when believers today are falsely dealt with. In many countries they are arrested, while in some countries, they are not arrested but are dealt with in a bad manner.

Each time something occurs, a believer must choose what to do. He must be in tune with what God is doing and what God wants him to do. Jesus knew that He had to be arrested, so there was no reason to fight back. He did not show violence, but love and care.

When someone falsely accuses you or treats you wrong because of your belief in Jesus, what will you do?

If you are like the world, you will fight back with violence and a vengeance.

Acting like Jesus, you will go forward and love the enemy and do good to them. You will not show violence to defend yourself. Be willing to accept what God has placed in your path, instead of fighting back. Fight with love and care, not violence, it does no good.

I pray today that you will know God’s love for all enemies; that you will know God’s plan for your life; that you will accept all God puts in your path; and that you will be a witness for Jesus in every situation.

Luke 11:4 A Dangerous Request

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“Forgive us our sins, for we also forgive everyone who sins against us. And lead us not into temptation.” Luke 11:4

The disciples asked Jesus to teach them how to pray, so Jesus gave them a model type of prayer. Part of it said that the person is to ask God to forgive them, just as or because he forgives everyone himself.

This prayer that Jesus gave the disciples has become known as “the Lord’s prayer.” Many people and churches pray this prayer on a regular basis. There is a Christian radio station that does this prayer on the radio everyday at noon.

Since Jesus taught this model of prayer, it has to be a good prayer to make. However, many people probably pray it without really thinking about what this prayer says or asks.

In this prayer it asks God to forgive them, just as or because they forgive others that sin against them.

This brings up the real question: do people forgive others?

Everyday people are being hurt by others. Some hurt them on purpose, while others do it by accident. These hurts are sins against another person. Many people, not only in the world, but also in the church, are not willing to forgive that person who hurt them. Grudges and vengeance is held against that person.

Many churches and church families have been split because of anger against someone who has hurt them. Harsh judgement is called down upon people who have harmed someone or it did wrong. Chances for restoration and forgiveness are very slim.

Families, that call themselves Christians, are split up because of sins against each other. Divorce, fights, abandonment, and vengeance occur because people are sinned against. The anger sits in the heart for years, often for life. People are hurt and are unwilling to forgive. There are some ‘Christian’ believers who hold hatred for a past hurt for decades, because they are unwilling to forgive.

If every believer was to really pray this prayer from their heart, how many would God actually be able to forgive if He forgives as they forgive?

You have to examine your own life before you make this prayer. Are you willing to do what this prayer asks? Have you done what you would say with saying this prayer?

Be willing to forgive others, just as Christ Jesus has been willing to forgive you. Allow God to forgive you.

I pray today that you will have the love for others as God had for you; that you will forgive others as Jesus forgave you; that God will strengthen you to release all past hurts and pains; and that you will live for God all the days of your life.

Luke 10:3 A Lamb Among Wolves

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Go! I am sending you out like lambs among wolves.” Luke 10:3

Jesus had been teaching the disciples for some time. Now He chooses to send them out to start working on their own at spreading the gospel message. He tells them that there is a great harvest and a lot to do. He then says He is sending them out as a lamb among wolves.

Wolves are a predator type animal that farmers do not like. When wolves are hungry they will seek farm animals for food. One of the challenging things with wolves is that they do not work alone, they always work in packs. A group of wolves will surround and animal in order to take it down for food.

Lambs are one of the easiest animals for a wolf to prey upon, because a lamb never physically fights. They are very calm and just follow a leader. Lambs eat grass and not other creatures, so they are never a threat to another animal.

Jesus tells the disciples that they would be like a lamb as they are sent out. They are not going with a physical power and fight. The disciples were going in God’s power and word. They were to show love and compassion.

The world is like the wolves. They seek to destroy and devour the lambs…the innocent people, followers of Jesus.

People in this world will work in packs trying to take down believers. Vicious rumors and lies will be spread about believers and God. All over the media, Christians are being mocked and ridiculed. A life that promotes everything against God is being promoted as good.

At times the world will even get physical with believers. Around the world there are believers who are being physically abused and tortured for their belief in Jesus.

As the world is acting like a wolf, believers are to be like a lamb. They are to be innocent and not physically fighting back. They are not to destroy and kill, but to love and bring life.

Each day as you go out, you must look at your life and see how you are portraying yourself. Are you being like the wolves and not bringing the life changing message to this world? Are you blending in with the wolves?

Or are you working to gather a harvest for God? Bring the gospel message of love and salvation to this world.

I pray today that you will know God’s love for all people; that you will be known as a believer in Jesus; that you will not return evil for evil; and that you will work to gather the harvest for God.

Luke 9:54-55 No Time For Condemnation

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When the disciples James and John saw this, they asked, “Lord, do you want us to call fire down from heaven to destroy them?” But Jesus turned and rebuked them. Luke 9:54-55

Jesus was on His way to Jerusalem and He had sent some disciples ahead into a Samaritan village to get it ready for Him. After the people rejected Him, James and John wanted to destroy the people. Jesus rebuked John and James for wanting to do that.

People are very quick to judge and want to destroy other people. This is very true when the other people do not act or think in the same way. This explains why there are so many different wars and battles going on around the world. People do not agree, so they choose to fight.

Just as John and James were quick to want to destroy the people, so are many believers. Sometimes they are quick to want to destroy another believer, but it is very common for them to want to destroy non-believers.

The world will act a certain way or promote a sinful action because that is who they are. Many believers are very quick to condemn them and want God to destroy them. This has been seen with abortion clinic doctors or terrorists.

Jesus said that the world would reject believers because it rejected Him. Jesus did not go out and start condemning the world because they rejected Him. He still showed love and compassion.

Condemning someone who is doing what they do because of who they are is not showing love. It is not giving the person a chance to change. If Jesus would have destroyed that village, the people would never have had another chance to believe in Him.

Believers can condemn the action, but must be careful not to condemn the person. That is the job Jesus is to do.

When people are not acting correctly or are working against you, know that you are going through what Jesus had gone through. You are not above Him. He went through rejection and still loved the people, so will you.

Take time to pray for the person. Be a shining light of who Jesus is and how He would react. Do not be like the world and condemn right away and be willing to have the other person destroyed. Show God’s love and compassion.

I pray today that you will know God’s love for all people; that God will give you strength when people reject you; that you will not be quick to condemn others; and that you will show God’s love to all people.