Moment With The Master

Moment With The Master

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The Way

Tuesday, May 14, 2024

But this I confess to you, that according to the Way which they call a sect, so I worship the God of my fathers, believing all things which are written in the Law and in the Prophets. (Acts 24:14)

“The way” is an expression used six times in Acts. (Acts 9:2; 19:9,23; 22:4; 24:14,22)  True Christianity is not founded on the religious doctrines of men, but solely upon the truth that comes from God.  Jesus said, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me. (John 14:6) The only way to truly follow God is by following His way.

There are many ways men choose to worship, but “the way” is according to God’s word and not according to man.  Some erroneously called “the way” a sect, but this so-called sect followed all that was written in the Law and the prophets.  A sect is based upon the self-willed opinions of men, but those who serve God according to “the way” are devoted to the composite of all that God has stated in his will.  In this context Paul states that this so-called sect believed in all that the Law and prophets had stated about a resurrection from the dead. (vs.15)

Through the ages man has been tempted to “pick and choose” from God’s word as it pleases him.  There is a constant peril to bring central truths to the foreground and treat them as if they are the whole.  When someone else points to certain inadequacies of this religion they are labeled with the charge of heresy.  However, the real heresy is this group that is devoted to missed truths and half-truths.  Before long someone will give this religious group a label and others will gladly follow.

Gods’ truth never needs the bolstering of any human court or judge.  God asks man to embrace and follow his will.  His word can win its own way.  It can take of its own purity.  It can cast off all unworthy additions.  Truth wants the open air and sunshine.  We need an absolute and unquestioning confidence that God’s word is no danger.  God has clearly given us all that we need to know to truly follow him. (II Peter 1:3)  Our mission is to discover, follow, and contend for it.

By George Slover

Money and Your Children

Tuesday, April 30, 2024

“Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is there will your heart be also.”  (Matthew 6:19-21)

Jesus teaches us about the frailty of earthly treasures.  He reminds us of the value of treasures in heaven.  Unfortunately, through advertising, we are bombarded with the opposite message.  We are seduced into believing that true happiness is sparkling private pools, deserted tropical beaches, and suites in lavish hotels.  Children are duped into believing that they are the most deprived creatures on earth if they don’t own expensive designer clothing and the latest high-tech toy.   Consider four important lessons about money and your children. 

First, teach them that money doesn’t buy love or happiness.  Jesus teaches that happiness is found in character, not in things.  (Mt. 5:1-12)  We must teach our children that proof of affection is not in an overpriced gift, but in establishing rules for building character.  Help them to see how the advertisers lie.  Are those children in the ad really happy because they’re wearing clothes from Gap or because the rocket ship is really flying?  Help your children to not be fooled by such deception.

Second, set the right example.  Children need to see moms and dads making sacrifices for the Lord and his cause instead of Dads working long hours so he can own the weekend “get away” or the new sports car.  Teach them right choices in how and why you spend money.  Show them how to save and invest especially in eternal things.  (I Tm. 6:17) 

Third, teach them how to share.  Most of us had to be taught how to share.  We must first share with God, then with our neighbors.  “It is more blessed to give than to receive”.  (Acts 20:35)  If we will teach them how to be generous, we will be introducing them to one of life’s greatest pleasures.

Fourth, teach them of the value of eternal things.  That coveted car brings temporary enjoyment, but tomorrow it is old and no longer satisfies.  (Ecless 5:10)  The world’s possessions begin to rust, but God promises an inheritance that “fades not away”.  (I Pt. 1:4) 

Where is your treasure?   Is it on earth or in heaven?

By George Slover

Living the Rat Race

Tuesday, April 23, 2024

I returned and saw under the sun that— The race is not to the swift, Nor the battle to the strong, Nor bread to the wise, Nor riches to men of understanding, Nor favor to men of skill;
But time and chance happen to them all.” (Ecclesiastes 9:11)

In the preceding verse (Ecclesiastes 3:10) the Preacher exhorts us to give all our power to the endeavors of life, because the time is coming when all such labors will come to an end. But in the verse above Solomon is preparing us for possible failure in these pursuits. What is then is the meaning of this verse?

Is the Preacher telling us that all of life is just a gamble? Is he saying that we are just left to blind fate without any activity of God? Did God just wind up the clock and leave us to our own fate without his intervention and care? The answer is no!

The marvelous work of God is all over this great book. In chapter 3, we learn that men live under the times and the seasons appointed by God (3:1–11). Please note the number of times “God“ is referenced: “the work of God”; “the gift of God”,and “God has put eternity in our heart“. From these verses, we learn that God, not fate, is in control. We depend on God, and we must submit to God.

Just what is meant by our verse? First, the Preacher reminds us that God has given us a work to do (3:12, 13), and the hands to accomplish that good (9:10).  He has given us companions (4:9–12; 9:9) with which to share that good. In chapter 3 and 9 we see that it is God’s desire for us to work diligently and to enjoy the fruit of our labor. But be careful. Don’t forget what is of greater importance.

In the midst of our earthly pursuits God allows for there to be a dose of reality. The reality of death is there (3:20; 9:3).  And God allows for days of prosperity and adversity (Ecclesiastes 7:13,14). There are times, when the “race is not to the swift“. This inequity may be due to the interference of evil men, or to the intervening work of God. It is during these times that painful, but necessary lessons are learned, and we are reminded to keep the “rat race” of life in perspective.  

It is tempting to neglect our eternal goals and commitment to God to pursue earthly goals. However, human ability alone cannot guarantee success. The interest that we have in this world can be removed in a heartbeat. But, through Jesus Christ we can have the assurance and guarantee of an eternal life in his presence. 

By George Slover

Until Shiloh Comes

Tuesday, April 16, 2024

The scepter shall not depart from Judah, Nor a lawgiver from between his feet, Until Shiloh comes; And to Him shall be the obedience of the people. (Genesis 49:10)

The dying vision of Jacob to his sons is recorded in Genesis 49.  The aged patriarch is miraculously foretelling the future of each of his sons.  We wish to consider what he specifically prophesies about Judah.

The reference to Judah as a lion crouched down is a precursor of Jesus “the lion of the tribe of Judah”.  (Revelation 5:5)   The scepter, an emblem of regal command, looks forward to the time when king would rule over Israel.  Jacob’s prophecy forecasts a succession of kings from Judah until “Shiloh” comes.  Ultimately, Jesus of Nazareth, from the tribe of Judah and linage of David (Acts 2:29-31), would sit on a throne reigning over a spiritual kingdom.  

The name “Shiloh” expresses rest or peace.  The Messiah would come to answer man’s greatest need.  Sin separates God and man, but Jesus died to reconcile the two.  (Ephesians 2:11-18)  Thus, Jesus is also called the “Prince of Peace”.  (Isaiah 9:6)

For what would “Shiloh” come?  He would come to gather all nations to Himself (Isaiah 2:2, 3); to redeem mankind, both Jews and Gentiles (Galatians 3:26-29); to bear the sins of mankind (Isaiah 53:11, 12); to teach people the way of life (John 11:25); to reign over His people (Colossians 1:13); and to give them victory over death. (I Corinthians 15:57)

God worked through the nation of Israel to prepare the World for the coming of “Shiloh”.  The Law of Moses convinced of sin and pointed the way to Christ (Galatians 3:24).  The Old Testament prophets declared God’s purpose in the person of Christ.  In the fullness of time God fulfilled his promises.

Why should we doubt God’s acceptance of us or His desire to help?  The work of Christ is not a newly revised thing.  God has been thinking about us for a long time! All of our imperfections are known to God, yet He bids us to trust the work of Christ.  He is the only rest giver.  To Him belongs all the honor and praise!

By George Slover  


God Isn’t Through

Tuesday, April 09, 2024
“A bruised reed He will not break, and smoking flax He will not quench; He will bring forth justice for truth.  (Isaiah 42:3) 

This great passage is found in the midst of Isaiah’s Messianic prophecies.  “My servant” (vs.1) is God’s servant, the Messiah.  We know this prophecy had a specific reference to Jesus from an account found in Matthew’s gospel (Mt.12:15-21).

Isaiah, in very vivid terms, speaks of the nature of the Messiah’s ministry.  He tells us that it would be 1) universal in scope ministering to the Gentiles, 2) based upon truth, and 3) without much fanfare.  These promises were certain and sure because the God who “created the heavens” foretold these things. 

In anticipation of the Messiah, one would look forward to the gentle nature of his ministry.  He would come ministering to the weak and the outcasts.  The figures found in verse 3 are proof of this.  The “bruised reed” and the “smoking flax” represent the kind of people toward whom God is patient.

The reed grew in river marshes and was used for making writing instruments.  They were so plentiful that a broken reed was considered worthless.  The flax was used as a wick in a lamp.  When it gave off more smoke than light it was snuffed out and thrown away.  Those two pictures represent those to whom Jesus ministers!  He will mend the reed and fan the flax – hoping for a flame!  He is so tender and so patient with us.  God isn’t through!
When counseling a weak brother, remember the exhortation of Paul – “support the weak”.  (I Thess.5:14)  When we are down on ourselves we must remember the patience of Jesus!  He still cares and is still “working’ on me”. 
By George Slover  

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