Family Talk Night Light for Couples

GOD’S GIFT

“The man and his wife were both naked, and they felt no shame.” Genesis 2:25

In previous generations, some people believed women were not supposed to enjoy sex. Even today some Christians still feel that sex between marital partners is somehow sinful or “dirty.”

But there’s nothing biblical about either viewpoint. The Lord created us as sexual beings and gave us the gift of physical intimacy as a means for expressing love between husband and wife. In the biblical account of the Garden of Eden, we are told that “a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh.” The Bible says that before sin entered the picture, the first husband and wife were unashamed of their nakedness (Genesis 2:24–25).

Scripture also uses sexual symbolism to describe the relationship between God and man. (Look, for example, at Isaiah 62:5Jeremiah 7:9 and 23:10Ezekiel 16; Hosea; Ephesians 5; and Revelation 19:6–7.) In addition, Solomon’s Song of Songs clearly celebrates sexual pleasure between married lovers. We suggest that you set time aside to read that book together.

As designed by God, sexual desire in marriage is more than an afterthought or a means to guarantee procreation. That’s why we can wholeheartedly say, “Let’s ‘make love’ the way our God intended!”

JUST BETWEEN US…

  • While growing up, did you receive positive or negative messages about sex?
  • How do you think this has affected our love life?
  • Do you think of sex as a gift from God? Is there anything about our love life that you’d like to tell me?

Dear God, thank You for making Your wonderful intentions for married sex so clear in Scripture. Where we have trampled on this gift, forgive us. We want so much to “make love” Your way. Amen.

  • From Night Light For Couples, by Dr. James & Shirley Dobson
    Copyright © 2000 by James Dobson, Inc. All rights reserved.

Family Talk Night Light for Parents

A MEASURE OF MERCY

God has bound all men over to disobedience so that he may have mercy on them all. Romans 11:32

I (JCD) was invited to speak at a church service many years ago, and I made two big mistakes. First, I decided to speak on the discipline of children. Second, I brought my kids to the church with me. I should have known better.

After delivering my witty, charming, and informative message, I stood at the front of the sanctuary answering questions from a group of about twenty-five parents. As I dispensed further wisdom, we all heard a crash in the balcony. I looked up in horror to see nine-year-old Danae chasing five-year-old Ryan over the seats, giggling and stumbling and running through the upper deck. It was one of the most embarrassing moments of my life. How could I go on telling the mother in front of me how to manage her children when mine were tearing down the church?

At frustrating times like these, I urge you to show a measure of mercy to your rambunctious little ones. No matter how hard you strive to implement a flawless system of discipline in your family, there will be times when it breaks down. Children will be children. If the Father of creation can grant mercy to His disobedient children (Romans 11:30–32), we can do the same to ours.

BEFORE YOU SAY GOOD NIGHT…

Do you ever expect more from your children than you should?

Are you merciful toward your kids even as you discipline them?

Are you most concerned about your image or your kids’ character?

Father, as we raise our daughters and sons, remind us that You are the author of their childish ways. As we teach them, lead us to attitudes of patience, understanding, and mercy. Thank You for our kids! Amen.

  • From Night Light For Parents, by Dr. James & Shirley Dobson
    Copyright © 2000 by James Dobson, Inc. All rights reserved.

God Generously Gave Us Jesus

“For what the law was powerless to do because it was weakened by the flesh, God did by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh to be a sin offering.”—Romans 8:3 (NIV)

As you saw yesterday —and hopefully listed—there is no shortage of examples of God’s generosity. The list is endless. And while everything we can think of, everything we can list, are amazing blessings and gracious gifts from God, there is one act of generosity that stands heads and shoulders above anything else, and it’s detailed in John 3:16 (NIV): “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”

There is truly no greater example of God’s generosity than the gift of Jesus Christ. Like Paul says in Romans 8:3, we were completely powerless to save ourselves; we were hopeless and in dire need of rescue. But the extent of His generosity goes beyond that. Why? Because we weren’t innocent victims; we were God’s enemies (Romans 5:10)—unrighteous (Romans 3), wretched (Romans 7:24), and deserving of death (Romans 6:23).

Think about this for a minute: It’s one thing to be generous to the poor or to rescue innocent, helpless children from a fate they don’t deserve. It’s another thing to be generous to a murderer or thief; to rescue an evil, wicked person. “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8 NASB).

That is the beauty and great mystery of the gospel in a nutshell. It’s in the overwhelming and completely undeserved generosity of God the Father to send Christ to bear our curse, to pay our debt, to die in our place. “He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him” (2 Corinthians 5:21 NASB).

Here is what we want you to understand above all else through this study: For the Christian, a lifestyle of generosity toward others should be a natural response to the generosity of God in sending Christ to save and redeem us. It should be a byproduct of the Spirit of Christ in us.

From the inside out, Jesus challenges our natural mind to embrace the heavenly reality that the most fulfilling life is the generous life in which we empty ourselves for the sake of others (Philippians 2). Sadly, many Christ-followers lack joy in their walk because they never enter, embrace, and experience a generous way of life.

If we’re seeking Him daily, growing in our discipleship walk with Him, being transformed by His Spirit, and conformed to His image, then the qualities of God we’ve discussed this week will pour out of us. As we become more like Christ, this will be evident in our generosity. A generous lifestyle is a byproduct of a deep, abiding, growing relationship with Christ. Why? Because generosity is not only a quality of our God, but it is also a form of worship. And when we abide in Him, we want to worship Him in every way possible, through every avenue of our lives.

Our great reward comes from glorifying Christ and experiencing a deeper, more profound and faith-filled relationship with Him because we are becoming more like Him. If nothing else sticks in your mind and heart throughout these four weeks, we hope this does. If it does, this month of teaching will have been worth it.

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What Is This Power? . .

Daily Update September 8 Hear Today’s Program
. And what is the immeasurable greatness of his power toward us who believe, according to the working of his great might that he worked in Christ when he raised him from the dead. Ephesians 1:19-20 The resurrection of Christ, and our salvation, was brought about by nothing less than divine power. What will we say of those who think that conversion is accomplished by the free will of man and is due to his own kindly disposition? When we begin to see the dead rise from the grave by their own power, then may we expect to see ungodly sinners turning to Christ by their own endeavors. It is not the word preached, nor the word read in itself; all quickening power proceeds from the Holy Spirit. This power was irresistible. All the soldiers and the high priests could not keep the body of Christ in the tomb; death itself could not hold Jesus in its grip: Just as irresistible is the power displayed in the believer when he is raised to newness of life. No sin, no corruption, no devils in hell nor sinners on earth can resist the hand of God’s grace when it intends to convert a man. If God omnipotently says, “You shall,” man will not say, “I shall not.” Notice that the power that raised Christ from the dead was glorious. It reflected honor upon God and caused dismay in the hosts of evil. So there is great glory to God in the conversion of every sinner. It was everlasting power. “Christ being raised from the dead will never die again; death no longer has dominion over him.”1 So we, being raised from the dead, do not go back to our dead works or to our old corruptions, but we live to God. “Because I live, you also will live.”2 “For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.”3 “Just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life.”4 Finally, in the text note the union of the new life to Jesus. The same power that raised the Head works life in the members. What a blessing to be quickened together with Christ! 1) Romans 6:9
2) John 14:19
3) Colossians 3:3
4) Romans 6:4
Devotional material is taken from “Morning and Evening,” written by C.H. Spurgeon, revised and updated by Alistair Begg. Copyright © 2003, Good News Publishers and used by Truth For Life with written permission. Share this devotional:         Email a Friend
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