Today’s Devotional – May 10th (Luther’s Penitence & Paul’s Toughness )

By admin On May 9th, 2014

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“Complete List of Daily Devotionals”

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Today’s Devotional – May 10th

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Luther’s Penitence & Paul’s Toughness

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Martin Luther was a very dedicated monk in the apostate churchttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Luther95theses.jpgh of Europe.

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Unfortunately, the Bible was not in the hands of the people of those days, and so Luther’s ignorance of grace caused him to go about his Salvation, as if it depended on being earned by his own good works!

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And so, Luther, as well as many other monks of those days, would perform various acts of penance, types of fastings and self denial, and other such, “self-cleansings”.

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And by these means, he hoped to eventually merit Salvation.

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Luther95theses wikipedia US public domain

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LUTHER DISCOVERS GOD’S GRACE

.http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Ravensburg_Stadtkirche_Reformatorenfenster_Luther_detail_1.jpg

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Now, of course, as his own writings revealed, Luther finally discovered the Bible, and through its knowledge he eventually came to understand the concept of Salvation through the atoning blood of Jesus Christ.

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Yes, one day, as he was crawling up the, “steps of penance”, it came to him like a bolt of lightning… “The Just shall live by faith!” And this Bible verse became the mantra for his future ministry.

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And as a result, the world finally came out of the religious fog of ignorance, which lay heavily upon Europe in those days!

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Luther – Wikipedia – public domain

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PAUL’S LIFE OF SELF-DENIAL

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Now, the Apostle, Paul, after his conversion, fully comprehended, “Salvation by grace”.

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Yes, God hashttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:PaulT.jpg chosen Paul, not only to be the human role-model for the Church, but also to properly define what it means to be, “saved by grace”, through faith in the atoning blood of Christ.

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And yet, in spite of his knowledge of grace, Paul also denied himself many of the pleasures and comforts of life.

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No, Paul didn’t crawl over broken glass, or flog himself, like those misled Christians in the Dark Ages. But Paul did engage in much fasting, many sleepless nights in prayer, and generally lived a life of self-denial.

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Yes, Paul lived a life of many hardships, most brought on by natural circumstances, as he journeyed thousands of miles, to spread the Good News in foreign lands.

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Paul the Apostle-Artist-Valentin de Boulogne or Nicolas Tournier- circa 1500s

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.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Luther95theses.jpghttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Probably_Valentin_de_Boulogne_-_Saint_Paul_Writing_His_Epistles_-_Google_Art_Project.jpg

So, just what was the difference between Paul and Martin Luther? After all, both men were dedicated to God. And both men believed in living a life of self-denial.

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PAUL’S MASTERY OVER HIS FLESH

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Well, let’s allow Paul to speak for himself… “Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain. And every man that striveth for thhttp://lavistachurchofchrist.org/Pictures/The%20Early%20Church%20Artwork/target8.htmle mastery is temperate in all things…But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.” 1st Corinthians 9:24-27

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So Paul here is stating his purpose for denying himself many, “creature comforts” of life… “But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.”

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Yes, Paul compared the Christian life to a race that must be run. And an important part of that race is to be “temperate in all things”. And so, Paul knew the importance of keeping control over his body, lest he became a slave to his fleshly appetites. 

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Paul Shipwrecked Acts 27:41-44-www.lavistachurchofchrist.org–public domain

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LIVING IN A CORNUCOPIA

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

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So how does all this translate into modern-day Christianity?

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Just how do we relate to Paul and his many admonishments to, “Thou therefore endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please Him who hath chosen him to be a soldier.”? 2nd Timothy 2:3, 4

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Well, as Christians today, many of us live in a very affluent society.

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Becoming a true disciple of Jesus requires all.

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Those who presume that they can continue to enthusiastically pursue the pleasures and cares of this life will eventually find themselves spiritually bankrupt!

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People on Times Square Wikimedia Commons share-alike license

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THE UPWARD PATHWAY

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Through daily contemplation of the Bible, through unceasing prayer, and through fiery trials, we become imperceptibly changed.

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And little-by-little, our lives become more and more in harmony with Christ.

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And then, one morning, we will awaken to realize, that we are now living that same self-sacrificing life that Christ (and Paul) lived!

 

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TODAY’S PRAYER…

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“Dear Lord, Help me to be a follower of Paul, even as he was a follower of Jesus. Let me not be deceived to think that any good works will merit Salvation in any way…

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READ MORE…

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To explore deeper into this subject, please read… “The Crown of Revelation 12: What Is “The Time of Jacob’s Trouble”?” or you can also read… “Moon Into Blood Trilogy: 1st Face: The Night Watchman”

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THE END

.Orion Constellation at Eagle Ridge

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TODAY’S FEATURED HEAVENLY SIGN

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THE NARROW WAY: THE PILGRIM’S PATHWAY

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“Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.” Matthew 7:13-14

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Winter Constellations in West

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This most amazing phenomenon is seen throughout the winter. Although it can be observed most of the winter, it is seen best when it is the western part of the sky, at winter’s end (The end of winter being the final scene of this heavenly Gospel story). Orion , the Dragon, and the Glorious White Horse are beginning to descend into the western horizon (sketch to right is Winter Constellations descending into western horizon. This can actually be seen as early as December, in the pre-dawn hours).

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And at this point it is apparent that the Fleeing Woman of Revelation 12 Constellation is veering toward the two bright stars, known as Castor and Pollux (sketch to left). But the Wide Gate Stars are composed of the two brightest stars of the Auriga Constellation, known as the star, Capella, and the star, Menkalinan. The two stars, Castor and Pollux, make up the concept of the Orion’s Narrow Gate Stars.

Revelation 12 Woman & Orion's Gate & Wide Gate.

This can even be observed into June in the western sky (for a short time just after dark). While a dark night is best for seeing the Woman Constellation, the 4 stars which comprise the Narrow Gate/Wide Gate Stars can be seen even under mediocre conditions. It begins with the Fleeing Woman of Revelation 12 Constellation (AKA Ursa Major) going towards these two doors.

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The sketch to left shows, the two doors are each composed of two bright stars. The two bright stars that comprise the Narrow Gate are the two brightest stars of the Orion the Reaper’s sickle. The two stars that comprise the ‘Wide Gate’ Stars are the two brightest stars of the wave of water that comes out of the Dragon Constellation’s mouth (for explanation of “Wave of Water”, just click here). The stars that make up the ‘Narrow Gate’ are about half the width of the Wide Gate (see sketch below left).

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Revelation 12 Woman chooses Narrow Way

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(For more information on Orion’s sickle, just click here, “Orion The Reaper”. )

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Editor’s note: These sketches on this page are merely sketches. The stars are not in their exact place. However, they are close enough to find them in the night sky. But as with most stars, it takes persistence to finally locate them.

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READ MORE…

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To explore deeper into this subject, please read… “Revelation 12 Woman & The Narrow Gate Stars (Orion’s Gate to Heaven)”

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TOMORROW:

“May 11th (Thy Will IS Done in Earth!)”

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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 #128 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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