VIDEO Perspective

Two matadors are surprised by bull

Lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven. Matthew 6:20


After being drafted by Indianapolis, NFL quarterback Sam Ehlinger was asked how he felt preparing for possibly starting in an NFL game. He replied, “Just the perspective that I’ve been able to gain through adversity, through life—things in my life—it’s really put into perspective what we’re on this earth to do.” He was thinking of the deaths of his father and brother. 

Ehlinger, a Christian, said that football is just a game. “And as much as everybody here loves it, and as much money that flows into the business and things that happen like that, at the end of the day it is just a sport.” He said he didn’t want to make football his life or his death. And afterward he tweeted a picture of Matthew 6:19-21—underlined in his Bible and bearing this caption: “We will spend a short amount of time here compared to eternity!”[1]

While the things of this world are passing away, we’re promised eternal life. We mustn’t place our trust in the world. God uses adversity to help us keep our perspective on what we’re on earth to do.

Let’s keep our eyes on eternity!

I’ve always kind of viewed the locker room as my mission field. Wherever God calls you, that’s where God calls you to be a missionary.
NFL Quarterback Ryan Tannehill

[1]Andrea Morris, “‘This is just a game,’” CBNNews, August 24, 2021.

Sermon on the Mount – Matthew 6:19:21 – In Depth – Pastor Chuck Smith – Bible Studies

Rescued from Powerful Enemies

[God] rescued me from my powerful enemy. 2 Samuel 22:18

In 2010, at the age of ninety-four, George Vujnovich was awarded the bronze star for organizing what the New York Times called “one of the greatest rescue efforts of World War II.” Vujnovich, son of Serbian immigrants to the US, had joined the US Army. When word arrived that downed American airmen were being protected by rebels in Yugoslavia, Vujnovich (who wanted to go on the mission himself, but could not) put together a three-man team that parachuted into the country and located the pilots. The soldiers were divided into small groups and taught how to blend in with the Serbs (wearing Serbian clothes and eating Serbian food). Then, over months, each small group was walked out one at a time to C-47 transport planes waiting at a landing strip they’d cut out of the woods. Vujnovich helped rescue 512 elated, joyful men.

David described the elation of being rescued by God from enemies who’d hemmed him in with no escape. God “reached down from on high and took hold of me,” David said, “he drew me out of deep waters” (2 Samuel 22:17). King Saul, enraged with jealousy, hounded David, ruthlessly seeking blood. But God had other plans. “He rescued me from my powerful enemy,” David recounted, “from my foes, who were too strong for me” (v. 18).

God rescued David from Saul. He rescued Israel from Egypt. And in Jesus, God came to rescue all of us. Jesus rescues us from sin, evil, and death. He’s greater than every powerful enemy.

By:  Winn Collier

Reflect & Pray

Where do you feel hemmed in, with no escape from lies you believe or sin that binds you? How do you see Jesus coming to rescue you?

All-powerful God, I need to be rescued. If You don’t help me, I’m finished. I have no escape. So I’m turning to You. Please help me.

Unashamed to Share the Gospel

Like Paul, we as believers should have no shame or fears in sharing God’s merciful gift of salvation with others

2 Timothy 1:6-12

Yesterday we saw how Paul understood the awesome responsibility of being entrusted with the gospel. Knowing he’d one day give an account to the Lord for how he carried out his calling, the apostle was willing to suffer for Christ’s sake to accomplish the task. As believers, we also have an obligation to share the gospel with whomever God places in our life. And we would be wise to consider what our level of commitment is. 

Paul felt compelled to tell people about the Savior. In fact, he said, “Woe to me if I do not” (1 Cor. 9:16). No matter how anyone treated him, he wasn’t ashamed of the message of Christ. And he kept warning unbelievers about the eternal consequences of ignoring the Lord’s gracious offer of salvation.

We may not want to warn people about God’s judgment, for fear of driving them away from Him. But in reality, people living in spiritual darkness are already far from the Lord and need to hear about His offer of forgiveness. Paul was even willing to die to get the message out. If we let ourselves be inspired by his example, we may discover unexpected boldness to share our faith.

The Christian’s Power

“And…the exceeding greatness of his power to us-ward who believe.” (Ephesians 1:19)

The power of the triune Creator, as displayed in the resurrection of Christ, is directed toward us! We can be certain that we will never fully comprehend that, but the Scriptures provide several clear statements that will help us get some usable grasp on this resource.

  1. We receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on us (Acts 1:8). The Holy Spirit indwells every believer (John 14:17; 1 Corinthians 6:19) and is therefore readily accessible to all believers (Ephesians 3:20).
  2. We use the power of God every time we preach the gospel (Romans 1:16; 1 Corinthians 1:18), whether to one person or to thousands.
  3. We learn of the power of God through “great and precious promises” (2 Peter 1:3-4). Indeed, those promises involve “all things that pertain to life and godliness.”
  4. We see the results of the power of God in our lives when our characters reflect “all patience and longsuffering with joyfulness” (Colossians 1:11).

The Lord desires “that [we] might be filled with all the fulness of God” (Ephesians 3:19) and “strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man” (v. 16). The purpose of this empowering is to be “rooted and built up in him, and stablished in the faith” (Colossians 2:7), “able to comprehend…the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge” (Ephesians 3:18-19).

“Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, Unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen” (vv. 20-21). HMM III

Third Movement: May Your Good Spirit Lead Me On Level Ground

Let me experience Your faithful love in the morning for I trust in You. Reveal to me the way I should go, because I long for You. Rescue me from my enemies, Lord; I come to You for protection. Teach me to do Your will, for You are my God. May Your gracious Spirit lead me on level ground. For Your name’s sake, Lord, let me live. In Your righteousness deliver me from trouble, and in Your faithful love destroy my enemies. Wipe out all those who attack me, for I am Your servant (Psalm 143 vv. 8-12).

At the moment of rebirth, when the human spirit is “yielded and still,” the Holy Spirit moves in to make his home and provide assistance for our pilgrimage with God.

Even David anticipated something of this divine exchange, I think. His despairing prayer, filled with strong, virile verbs, is the night sky against which the dazzling stars of God’s grace through his Spirit are displayed.

Guide— David prays, “Review to me the way” (v. 8), sensing that God’s guiding Spirit will not leave him stranded, not remove him from the unfailing love that is everlasting.

Enabler—“Rescue me from my enemies” (v. 9), he continues. It is the Spirit of God who enables and empowers. David’s many military coups were a result of divine intervention by the Enabler.

Teacher— “Teach me to do Your will,… May your gracious Spirit lead me on level ground” (v. 10). The Holy Spirit is our Teacher/Interpreter. It is he who explains spiritual mysteries and levels the ground of our understanding.

Comforter— “For Your name’s sake, Lord, let me live… deliver me from trouble” (v. 11). God’s Spirit whispers words of encouragement and calls to our minds his mighty works in our behalf. He banishes discouragement and puts a song in our hearts!

Personal Prayer

O Lord, fill me with your Spirit today. Guide me, enable me, teach me, comfort me. I need help as I continue my pilgrimage.

Plenty of Time for You”

God, how difficult Your thoughts are for me to comprehend; how vast their sum is!—Psalm 139:17

The constituent parts of personality are predicted of God on almost every page of the Bible. “I will raise up a faithful priest for Myself. He will do whatever is in My heart and mind,” said the Lord to Eli in 1 Samuel 2:35. This shows (if it needs showing) that God has a mind with which He thinks.

God has emotions also—another aspect of personality. Some modern-day theologians claim that God is unable to feel, but clearly this is not supported by Scripture. God can be angry (Ps 2:12), jealous (Zch 1:14-15), merciful (Ps 78:38), and joyful (Dt 30:9). These are just a few of the emotions which Scripture talks about, but there are many more. Again, God chooses and decides. “The Lord regretted that He had made man on the earth … Then the Lord said, ‘I will wipe off the face of the earth mankind … together with the animals, creatures that crawl, and birds of the sky'” (Gn 6:6-7).

While the majority of people believe in some kind of God, many view Him as being so great that He cannot possibly take a personal interest in such insignificant creatures as ourselves. Dr. Henry Norris Russell, one of the great astronomers of this century and a Christian, once gave a talk on the vastness of the universe. Afterwards, someone asked him this question: “How is it possible for such a great and infinite God to have time for me?” This was his reply: “An infinite God can dispatch the affairs of this universe in the twinkling of an eye, thus giving Him plenty of time for you.”


O Father, help me in the midst of every trial and difficulty to drop my anchor in this reassuring and encouraging revelation: no matter what my problem, You always have plenty of time to give to me. I am so deeply, deeply thankful. Amen.

Further Study

Heb 4:12-16; Ps 2:12; 78:38; Zch 1:14-15; Dt 30:9

Can you think of other Scriptures showing God’s emotions?

What is God able to do through Christ?

“Fear Not”

Luke 2:10

Why is it that in the movies, whenever aliens come to Earth, they always announce to a wary populace, “We come in peace,” even when they don’t?

When the angels appeared on the scene in Bethlehem to herald Jesus’ birth, Scripture records that they said to the shepherds, “Fear not” (Luke 2:10 KJV) Easy for them to say, since they were not the ones who had just been scared half to death.

The shepherds had no companions other than the sheep. No comfy sofa. No Nintendo. No ESPN. Theirs was a boring, thankless job: caring for smelly, stupid sheep. In the middle of one of those tedious nights, angels in gleaming white robes packed the sky singing, “Glory to God in the highest. Peace on earth!” Standing in front of them was an angel, dressed in a brilliant robe. Guess what he said? Right—”Fear not.”

“Fear not, for I have great news and you are getting it first. In the City of David is born the Christ, the Messiah. Go and see this for yourselves. Don’t mind the angel choir. They have been practicing for thousands of years and there is no holding them back any longer! Now go and see.”

The shepherds immediately ran to see the Christ who came to save His people from their sins. There was no vote, no discussion.

At times we need to be careful and deliberate in our choices. But there are other times when we need to take a leap of faith into God’s unknown adventure. What if the shepherds had said, “We don’t have good enough clothes for a king,” or “What will people think?” They wanted to see the Lord firsthand and didn’t care about anything else.

Most people would have been content to hear the concert and go home, but not the shepherds. They seized the opportunity to know the Savior for themselves.

The angel came with news of hope and forgiveness for ordinary people. Perhaps this Christmas you will hear the message “Fear not” and discover Jesus’ love for yourself. Unlike scheming aliens, the angels carry a message of love that is totally true and trustworthy.

Discover the Lord firsthand, with fear, reverence and excitement—just like the shepherds did.

A. Kenneth Wilson, The War Cry