Daily Devotional, Year 2 – April 19 (To Die Is Gain!?! Part 2: “Love Not The World!”)

By admin On February 27th, 2015

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 “Complete List of Daily Devotionals”

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Daily Devotional, Year 2 – APRIL 19

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To Die Is Gain!?! Part 2: “Love Not The World”

To read Part 1, click here… “November 30th (To die is gain!?!)”

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“He that loveth his life shall lose it;

and he that hateth his life in this world

shall keep it unto life eternal.”

John 12:25

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“To die is gain”

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What kind of insanity is that statement? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:PaulT.jpg“To die is gain?”

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That can’t be a verse from the Bible!

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There has to be a mistake somewhere!

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Actually, this is part of a confession made by the Apostle, Paul.

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Listen… “For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.” Philippians 1:21

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paul wikimedia US public domain

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WORLD AND CHURCH IN AGREEMENT

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The fact is, Paul had no qualms about dying.

.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Decapitaci%C3%B3n_de_San_Pablo_-_Simonet_-_1887.jpg

He says several times, that dying in Christ is far better than living in this ungodly world.

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Now of course, such a statement as that would be considered pure madness by the people of the world.

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Well, after all, the Bible says that they are, “having no hope, without God in the world”.

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So understandably, they could never accept such an idea!

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Decapitación of Paul – by Simonet – 1887 – Wikipedia – US Public Domain

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HATING THIS PRESENT WORLD

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So just what should our position be, regarding our life in this world?

.http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:At_a_loss.svg

Listen to the very words of Jesus… “He that loveth his life shall lose it; and he that hateth his life in this world shall keep it unto life eternal.” John 12:25

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So why would Jesus say this?

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Doesn’t He want us to be happy?

 

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Question Marks – At a loss – svg – Wikimedia Commons – Share-Alike License

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A SUFFERING WORLD

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Apotheosis.jpg

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While perhaps 50% of the world may be having a good time, it must be remembered that the rest are suffering!

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So when Jesus came down to this world, He was ever mindful of the needs of those around Him.

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Of course, it is NOT the sick, dying and suffering who caused Jesus so much grief.

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Oh yes, Jesus greatly grieves for those who are suffering!

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But even more than those, it is the ones who are having a good time in the world, and hate Him for His condemnation of their beloved world, that makes Jesus so sad!

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Apotheosis of War – Wikimedia – US Public Domain

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THE DEVIL’S WORLD

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Martin,_John_-_Satan_presiding_at_the_Infernal_Council_-_1824.JPG

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The Christian must be ever reminding himself, just who is “the god of this world”. 2nd Corinthians 4:4.

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We live in a world of selfish pleasures. And for the perishing world, there is nothing wrong with enjoying this world.

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But for those of us who have been called out, we must keep fulfilling our great commission to purify our hearts, and conform our lives into Christ’s likeness!

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Listen, as John exhorts us to turn our backs on this selfish world… “Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.” 1st John 2:15, 16

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So here is the revelation, that all those who love this present world have not the love of God in their hearts!

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Satan presiding at the Infernal Council- Wikpedia – US Public Domain

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SUFFERING CHRISTIANS

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Now, there are many Christians who are going through intense trials, either from physical ailments, or from the Devil, as he strives to make thehttps://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Christianandapollyon.jpgm as miserable as he possibly can!  

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Listen to Paul, as he describes this… (Paul) confirming the souls of the disciples, and exhorting them to continue in the faith, and that we must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of God.” Acts 14:22

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So if any Christian does not go through, “much tribulation”, then that Christian needs to consider this… “If the Devil isn’t coming against me, is it possible that both he and I are traveling in the same direction?” 

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Christian and Apollyon – Wikipedia – Public Domain

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CORINTHIANS: A PLEASURE-DRIVEN CHURCH

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The Apostle, Paul, while attempting to make sense to the Corinthian Church, to abandon their pleasure-seeking lives, tried to present to them the http://lavistachurchofchrist.org/Pictures/The%20Early%20Church%20Artwork/target8.htmlproper balance in the Christian life. 

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This next passage is a condensed description of that proper tension…“But in all things approving ourselves as the ministers of God, in much patience, in afflictions, in necessities, in distresses, In stripes, in imprisonments, in tumults, in labours, in watchings, in fastings…as dying, and, behold, we live; as chastened, and not killed. As sorrowful, yet alway rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing all things.” 2nd Corinthians 6:4, 5, 9-11

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So in this above passage, Paul was describing the curious dichotomy in the Christian’s life.

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It is a heavenly joy which flows from within, even amidst the trials and sorrows of this life!

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Paul Shipwrecked – Acts 27:41-44 – www.lavistachurchofchrist.org – Public Domain

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TODAY’S CHURCH ALSO LIVING IN PLEASURE

companys-coming - revised

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Satan’s old weapons of the Dark Ages were, “burning-at-the-stake”, “the Rack”, and many other torture devices!

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But his new weapons of today’s cornucopian super-society are, “materialism”, “television”, “Internet devices”, “pleasure resorts”, “social clubs”, “sports”, “sensual music”, “nicer homes”, “nicer cars”, “bigger toys”, “fatter bank accounts”, “enviable careers”, and a long list of other similar pleasures and pursuits!  

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The following verse from James, really speaks to today’s Church… “Ye have lived in pleasure on the earth, and been wanton; ye have nourished your hearts, as in a day of slaughter.” James 5:5

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In other words, we’re in the very same position as that pleasure-loving Corinthian Church!

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INNOCENT PLEASURES OF LIFE

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Now, does the Christian get to experience any enjoyment in life?

.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Sunset_at_Huntington_Beach.jpg

Well, of course we do!

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To enjoy the beautiful things of nature, is a big part of the Christian life!

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To see our babies engaging in childish antics makes us laugh!

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To enjoy our daily bread!

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To feel the warmth of the morning Sun!

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There are countless innocent God-given joys and pleasures which still exist in nature!

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Sunset at Huntington Beach – Wikimedia – Share-alike License 

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HEAVENLY JOYS TOO!

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But the Christian also has many added joys, which the world cannot comprehend: to rejoice in reading God’s Word!

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To spend time alone with God in secret prayer!

.http://blog.travelpod.com/travel-photo/jeastty/3/1303829593/mall-witnessing.jpg/tpod.html

To tell others about God’s wonderful Salvation!

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To receive an answer to our prayers!

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To realize that God has created this world, where the remnants of its former majesty and splendor still remain!

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To experience the same agape love for the souls of humans that Jesus had!

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These are just a few of the many joys which flow like rivers of living waters, out of the Christian, throughout the day! 

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Mall witnessing, Panama City, Panama

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WE SHALL DOUBTLESS COME REJOICING

http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Moses_Viewing_the_Promised_Land_Frederic_Edwin_Church.jpg

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But though we may be in heaviness for a season, we have the following promise… “He that goeth forth and weepeth, bearing precious seed, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him.” Psalm 126:6

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The Christian has something to look forward to, which makes all our sufferings worthwhile: to realize that when this short life is over, we will go on to live forever in a land flowing with rivers of joy, in which we will never grow old…

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Listen… “For, behold, I create new heavens and a new earth: and the former shall not be remembered, nor come into mind. But be ye glad and rejoice for ever in that which I create” Isaiah 65:17, 18

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Moses Viewing the Promised Land – Frederic Edwin Church – WIKIMEDIA – PUBLIC DOMAIN.

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To read Part 3 of this series, click here… “April 26 (To Die Is Gain!?! Part 3: “Heavenly Joy!”)”

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TODAY’S PRAYER…

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“Dear Lord, help my faith to grow. Help me to become like Paul, in my faith-walk. Let me grow in grace and in the knowledge of Jesus, so that I may meet life’s challenges with such an unwaivering faith in Thy precious promises…

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READ MORE…

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To explore deeper into this subject, please read… “Running The Christian Race (Part 1: Paul & John: Our Role Models)”

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THE END

.Soldiers of the Cross - Armor-Up!

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TODAY’S FEATURED HEAVENLY SIGN

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WOMAN ON THE ALTAR CONSTELLATION

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This “Altar” Constellation is only seen in winter through spring, in mid-sky. It is to the south of the “Fleeing Woman Constellation” (AKA Ursa Major or The Big Dipper).

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The “Fleeing Woman of Revelation 12” Constellation is in the northeastern sky in this sketch. You would be facing east and looking very high up almost to mid-sky to see this constellation group this way. The altar is farther south but still in the eastern sky. This altar is commonly known as Leo Major“, with the smoke rising beingLeo Minor“.

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A little farther down this page is the sketch of this same constellation in the latter part of winter, when you look at them facing westward. You will notice that what looked like Gospel seed being cast from her left hand and left foot (see “Woman of Revelation 12-The Fleeing Woman” article for explanation of casting “Gospel Seed”) now appears like smoke or incense rising from the altar.

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It is not clear why the altar is sideways in back of the Woman. It would make more sense if it were directly under the Woman. However, the Lord must have some spiritual truth to convey concerning this odd positioning of the Altar. The 7 Stars (Big Dipper) is easy to see with its very bright 7 stars. But the Revelation 12 Woman (Ursa Major) must be seen on a dark starry night, away from city lights.

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THE ZODIAC CONSTELLATION NAMES

It is not the purpose of www.theheavensdeclare.net to give any validity to the Zodiac or any pagan deities. But the common names of many constellations (such as Scorpio or Sagittarius, etc.), must be given, solely for the purpose of locating them on star-charts.

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READ MORE…

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To explore deeper into this subject, please read… “Woman of Revelation 12, (“The Woman on the Altar”)” or you can also read… “The Flower of Heaven Constellation”

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TOMORROW…

“April 20 ( Wake-up Call, 911)”

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20+ MINUTE AUDIO STUDY IN JEREMIAH 

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YOU ARE ENCOURAGED TO BEGIN FOLLOWING THIS 650+ AUDIO BIBLE STUDY THROUGH THE BOOK OF JEREMIAH EACH DAY ON THIS DAILY DEVOTIONAL.

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THIS STUDY #475 IS PRESENTED BY THE LATE HAROLD CAMPING OF FAMILY RADIO…

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above picture: Prophet Jeremiah – www.christianimagesource.org – Public Domain

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