VIDEO Canceled

The servant’s master took pity on him, canceled the debt and let him go. Matthew 18:27, NIV

Jesus Christ believes in only one kind of cancel culture—He wants to cancel all our sins! Colossians 2:13-14 says, “God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, having canceled the charge against our legal indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us; he has taken it away, nailing it to the cross” (NIV).

Unlike the cancel culture which tries to erase those who don’t agree with it, Christ’s love for us cancels our sins, and His love will never be canceled. We can go on living for Him in a culture that is increasingly hostile and judgmental.

In Matthew 18, Jesus told of a man who owed the king millions of dollars. The king forgave the debt. But the forgiven man refused to cancel the debt of a man who owned him a much lesser amount, and it came back to haunt him. Because God’s love has canceled our debt, we should forgive others. This is the right kind of cancel culture. Practice forgiveness wisely; the rest of the world will take notice!

Those who call [God] their Father will display something of His character and show a forgiving attitude toward others. F. F. Bruce

The Impossibility of Salvation, Part 1 (Luke 18:18-27)

Grandmother Research

He will take great delight in you. Zephaniah 3:17

Researchers at Emory University used MRI scans to study the brains of grandmothers. They measured empathetic responses to images that included their own grandchild, their own adult child, and one anonymous child. The study showed that grandmothers have a higher empathy toward their own grandchild than even their own adult child. This is attributed to what they call the “cute factor”—their own grandchild being more “adorable” than the adult.

Before we say, “Well, duh!” we might consider the words of James Rilling, who conducted the study: “If their grandchild is smiling, [the grandmother is] feeling the child’s joy. And if their grandchild is crying, they’re feeling the child’s pain and distress.”

One prophet paints an “MRI image” of God’s feelings as He looks upon His people: “He will take great delight in you; in his love he will . . . rejoice over you with singing” (Zephaniah 3:17). Some translate this to say, “You will make His heart full of joy, and He will sing loudly.” Like an empathetic grandmother, God feels our pain: “In all their distress he too was distressed” (Isaiah 63:9), and He feels our joy: “The Lord takes delight in his people” (Psalm 149:4).

When we feel discouraged, it’s good to remember that God has real feelings for us. He’s not a cold, far away God, but One who loves and delights in us. It’s time to draw close to Him, feel His smile—and listen to His singing.

By:  Kenneth Petersen

Reflect & Pray

How have you felt the pleasure of God? How does this make you feel?

Dear God, help me to feel Your smile upon me.

The Blessings of Patience

Upon reaching the destination, we sometimes realize the greater blessing came from the journey Galatians 6:9

It took Leo Tolstoy six years (and at least seven drafts) to write War and Peace, but his novel now stands as one of the greatest literary masterworks of all time. Ludwig van Beethoven waited even longer to bring his finest composition—Symphony No. 9—to the stage. It took a whopping three decades.  

What if these men had simply given up? What if they hadn’t pushed through all the frustrations and setbacks? What if they’d listened to all the people telling them it couldn’t be done? They’d have been the poorer for it—and so would we. 

Sometimes God’s promises can also feel far away and too difficult to reach. That’s why many people look for shortcuts. After all, they reason, if God makes a promise, wouldn’t He want us to attain and enjoy it as quickly as possible? Not necessarily. When we try to manipulate circumstances and “help” the Lord fulfill His promise, it’s possible for us to get in the way of the good things He has in mind for us. For this reason, we must be patient and remember that part of the blessing is the trust and wisdom gained while waiting.

When We Abide in Christ

“Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me.” (John 15:4)

The Lord Jesus has told us to be careful always to “abide” in Him. The Greek word means “remain,” “endure,” “continue,” or “dwell.” He is to be our motivation, our standard, our home, our everything. When we do abide thus in Him, the Scriptures indicate that it will make a great difference in our lives right now, as well as in the life to come.

For example, “he that saith he abideth in him ought himself also so to walk, even as he walked” (1 John 2:6). Furthermore, “whosoever abideth in him sinneth not” (1 John 3:6). Love for our Christian brethren will be evident, for “he that loveth his brother abideth in the light” (1 John 2:10). We will obey His Word, for “he that keepeth his commandments dwelleth [same word] in him, and he in him” (1 John 3:24).

In Christ’s discourse on the vine and the branches (John 15:1-16) are several wonderful promises to the Christian. “He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit” (v. 5). “If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you” (v. 7). “These things have I spoken unto you that my joy might remain [same word] in you, and that your joy might be full” (v. 11). “I have chosen you…that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain” (v. 16).

If we dwell in Christ, we actually are abiding in the Father and the Spirit also. Jesus said that “the Spirit of truth…dwelleth with you,” and “[my Father and I] will come unto him, and make our abode with him” (John 14:17, 23).

Therefore, let us “abide in him; that, when he shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at his coming” (1 John 2:28). HMM

“Success” Is A Seductive Mistress

“Success” does indeed have its rewards. Therefore the temptation to parade the accouterments of achievement in front of others in order to garner their admiration is almost irresistible! After all,

If youve got it, FLAUNT IT!“(But subtly, of course.)

Let’s just admit that it’s hard to be humble when you’re soooo good!

God is not against success. But He is against pride. And the pride that often accompanies our success can indeed be seductive.

Take for example the experiences of:


But after Uzziah became powerful, his pride led to his downfall. He was unfaithful to the Lord his God… “(2 Chronicles 26:16)


After Rehoboams position as king was established and he had become strong, he and all Israel with him abandoned the law of the Lord.“(2 Chronicles 12:1)


Jeshurun grew fatfilled with foodheavy and sleek. He abandoned the God who made him and rejected the Rock his Savior.“(Deuteronomy. 32:15)

Because “SUCCESS” IS A SEDUCTIVE MISTRESS we would be wise to heed sage old King Solomon — who himself was seduced by his success — when he prayed:

Give me neither poverty nor riches, but give me only my daily bread. Otherwise, I may have too much and disown you and say, Who is the Lord? Or I may become poor and steal, and so dishonor the name of my God.“(Proverbs 30:8, 9)

QUESTION: How well are you handling your “success” in the eyes of the Lord Jesus?

  • Is He pleased as He observes you, His humble, self-sacrificing, and gracious servant? Or:
  • Is He grieved by a pride-ridden life that is locked on to spiritual cruise-control?

All His saints are in Thy hand.”

Deuteronomy 33:1-3, 6-17

Deuteronomy 33:1

They had worried but they had not wearied him. Evil was their recompense, but ardent was his love. He died with a blessing on his lips.

Deuteronomy 33:2

saints or holy ones

Deuteronomy 33:3

Love made the Lord reveal himself through Moses; but what shall we say of the divine manifestation in Christ Jesus? Herein is love made perfect!

Deuteronomy 33:6

God grant that our little churches may live and become strong.

Deuteronomy 33:7

May the like blessing be upon each believer. Strength sufficient is what we need and all we need; strength to waste would be no blessing.

Deuteronomy 33:9

This alludes to the fidelity of the tribe of Levi upon several trying occasions, when they not only held fast to the Lord, but became the executioners of divine vengeance upon their own brethren. Being found faithful, they were entrusted with the sacred ministry.

Deuteronomy 33:12

The Lord was the strength of Benjamin, and graciously placed his power where Benjamin carried his burden—between his shoulders.

Deuteronomy 33:13

that is, for the fountains and springs which arise from the bowels of the earth,

Deuteronomy 33:14

The sun of prosperity and the moon of adversity each produces its choice graces.

Deuteronomy 33:16

This was the crowning mercy. Lord, give us this, and we are well content;

Deuteronomy 33:17

The separated one, though persecuted by his brethren, received the richest blessing and the double inheritance. The more we are set apart for the Lord, the more of blessing shall we receive; and as to the persecution brought on us thereby, we may cheerfully bear it as a light and momentary affliction.

The people whom the Lord hath brought

From Egypt’s cruel land,

For whom with wondrous deeds he fought

Are ever in his hand.

Stronger than death his love is shown;

Right well he doth defend;

And having freely loved his own

He’ll love them to the end.

God Does Not Have Power: God Is Power

God hath spoken once: twice have I heard this; that power belongeth unto God. Psalm 62:11

It is hard for us sons of the machine age to remember that there is no power apart from God! Whether physical, intellectual, moral or spiritual, power is contained in God, flows out from Him and returns to Him again. The power that works throughout His creation remains in Him even while it operates in an atom or a galaxy!

The notion that power is something God separates from Himself and tosses out to work apart from Him is erroneous. The power of nature is the Presence of God in the universe. This idea is woven into the Book of Job, the Psalms and the Prophets.

The writings of John and Paul in the New Testament harmonize with this Old Testament doctrine, and in the Book of Hebrews it is said that Christ upholds all things by the word of His power.

We must not think of the power of God as wild, irrational energy coursing haphazardly through the world like a lightning stroke or a tornado. This is the impression sometimes created by Bible teachers who keep reminding us that dunamis, the Greek word for power, is the root from which comes our word “dynamite.” Little wonder that sensitive Christians shrink from contact with such a destructive and unpredictable force.

The power of God is not something God has: it is something God is! Power is something that is true of God as wisdom and love are true of Him. It is, if we might so state it, a fact of His being, one with and indivisible from everything else that He is. The power of God is one with God’s will and works only as He wills that it should. It is His holy Being in action!