INSTITUTE FOR CREATION RESEARCH

  DAYS OF PRAISEJune 25, 2020
Satan’s Wiles
“Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.” (Ephesians 6:16)

Our goals as victorious warriors or even survivors in the battle at hand include neutralizing the enemy’s tactics as well as defeating him. The Christian wants to live above the fray, being successful in his efforts to “quench all the fiery darts of the wicked,” as we saw in our text. The third verse of the hymn “Higher Ground” expresses this desire well.

I want to live above the world,
Though Satan’s darts at me are hurled;
For faith has caught the joyful sound,
The song of saints on higher ground.

The passage surrounding our text captures the warrior’s spirit well. The fighter is to don with care his entire armor (Ephesians 6:13) and protect his “loins girt about with truth” and wearing the “breastplate of righteousness.” He must be protected from head to toe, “shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace” (v. 14-15) and standing with the helmet of salvation on his head. The text gives further instructions, perhaps more important than all the others, for it instructs “above all, taking the shield of faith.” Our faith, our belief in God, and the knowledge of the Word of God provide the necessary and winning power for the battle. “For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith” (1 John 5:4).

The final item mentioned in this important passage is the striving together of the saints for the common goal, praying together and beseeching God for His blessings. “Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit” (Ephesians 6:18) makes victory more certain in both the short run and the long. What bliss to catch the joyful sound of faithful saints on higher ground. JDM

 

TRUTH FOR LIFE

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June 25

Hear Today’s Program

Finding True Rest

But the dove found no place to set her foot.

Genesis 8:9

Reader, can you find rest apart from the ark, Christ Jesus? Then consider that your religion may be in vain. Are you satisfied with anything short of a conscious knowledge of your union and interest in Christ? Then woe to you. If you profess to be a Christian while finding full satisfaction in worldly pleasures and pursuits, your profession is probably false. If your soul can stretch herself at rest and find the bed long enough and the blanket broad enough to cover it in the chambers of sin, then you are a hypocrite and far away from any proper thoughts of Christ or awareness of His preciousness.

But if, on the other hand, you feel that if you could indulge in sin without punishment, that would be a punishment itself, and that if you could have the whole world and live in it forever, it would be quite enough misery not to be separated from it, for your God—your God—is what your soul longs for, then be of good courage, you are a child of God. With all your sins and imperfections, take this for your comfort: If your soul has no rest in sin, you are not as the sinner is! If you are still crying after and craving after something better, Christ has not forgotten you, for you have not quite forgotten Him.

The believer cannot do without his Lord; words are inadequate to express his thoughts of Him. We cannot live on the sands of the wilderness—we want the manna that drops from heaven; the pitchers of self-confidence cannot produce for us a drop of moisture, but we drink of the rock that follows us, and that rock is Christ. When you feed on Him, your soul can sing, “He who satisfies me with good so that my youth is renewed like the eagle’s”;1 but if you don’t have Him, your wine cellar and well-stocked pantry can give you no sort of satisfaction: Learn to lament over them in the words of wisdom, “Vanity of vanities, all is vanity!”

1) Psalm 103:5

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Living Life in Jesus’ Name.

CARE INSTRUCTION FOR A LIFE WORTH LIVING

Amidst all the confusing and distorted notions, Scripture speaks with brilliant clarity. “Whoever claims to live in him must walk as Jesus did” (1 John 2:6, NIV). To pursue spiritual life means simply this: To know Jesus more intimately and to live as if he were in your place. It is to orderyour life in such a way that you stay connected to Christ, thinking as he thought, speaking as he spoke, and walking as he walked.

Certainly, this imitation of Christ will look different for each person, expressing itself through that person’s unique temperament, abilities, and circumstances. But there is a common denominator. At the core of Jesus’ teaching is the command to love God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength, and to love other people as you love yourself. (Mark 12:30–31).

What would this kind of life look like if you actually lived it out? Let’s face it—you could chalk up this concept as another idea that sounds good but isn’t really practical. Yet God is inviting you to make each moment of everyday a chance to learn from him how to master the art of life.

The apostle Paul put it like this: “Whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus.” (Col.3:17, NIV)

In the Bible, names often reflect a person’s character. So to do something in Jesus’ name means to do it in a way consistent with his character—to do it the way Jesus himself would. Paul’s teaching is very comprehensive on this matter. He says, “Whatever you do. . . .” And in case anyone misses his point, he adds, “. . . whether in word or deed. . . .” And in case anyone misses that he says, “. . . do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus” (italics added for emphasis).

Your spiritual life is simply your whole life—every minute and detail of it—from God’s perspective. In other words, God isn’t interested in your spiritual life. God is simply interested in your life. And every moment is an opportunity to do life in Jesus’ name.

One fully devoted follower, Brother Lawrence, put it this way: “(W)hat makes you think that God is absent from the maintenance shop but present in the chapel? . . . Holiness doesn’t depend on changing our jobs, but in doing for God’s sake what we have been used to doing for our own. Seriously—repair the equipment for God, answer the abusive phone calls for God, concentrate fully on the job you’re doing for God. He isn’t obsessed with religion— he’s the God of the whole of life. But we need to give it to him, consciously turning it over into his hands. Then whatever we’re doing—provided it is not against his will—becomes an act of Christian service.” —David Winter, Closer Than a Brother (on the life of Brother Lawrence)

All of the everyday stuff of life can be filled with his presence—if you are. You can do what you’re doing right now as Jesus would do it in your place. And if you do, you too will know the joy of true spiritual life.