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Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Day 31 of Pastor Chris' Paraphrase of Proverbs Deovotional


Day 31  If you choose to get married, the person you choose will be the greatest influencing factor in your life.  Marriage is far deeper than romantic feelings and passion. It is a partnership for life.  It is two people becoming one flesh.  It is a symbol of Christ's love for His church.  Choose wisely or choose not to marry.

Pastor Chris' Paraphrase of Proverbs 31:10-12
10-12 A really good wife is a truly rare treasure.  She’s worth more than diamonds.  Her husband trusts her with his whole heart and she blesses his life.  She helps and never hurts him all the days of her life.

Everyone puts a lot of pressure on you to get married and they have all these oversimplified sentiments about marriage that have very little to do with the reality of married life.  Don't fall for the world's folly.  A wise person knows marriage is not required (Jesus never married).  It is perfectly normal and acceptable and often best to remain single and celibate.  If you choose to marry, choose a godly spouse who shares your core values and compliments you well.  Love your spouse like Jesus loves you.  They are the single most important thing in your life--more important than your kids, your job, your friends, your family, your hobbies, your possessions, or anything else.  A really good wife (or husband) is a truly rare treasure.

Prayer
"Loving God, you know everything about me and my spouse.  Help us to love each other the way You love us so we can help each other become all that You want us to be.  Amen."

Read Proverbs Chapter 31
New American Standard Bible
Pastor Chris’ Paraphrase
Proverbs 31

The Words of Lemuel

1 The words of King Lemuel, the [a]oracle which his mother taught him:

2 What, O my son?
And what, O son of my womb?
And what, O son of my vows?

3 Do not give your strength to women,
Or your ways to that which destroys kings.

4 It is not for kings, O Lemuel,
It is not for kings to drink wine,
Or for rulers to desire strong drink,

5 For they will drink and forget what is decreed,
And pervert the [b]rights of all the [c]afflicted.

6 Give strong drink to him who is perishing,
And wine to him [d]whose life is bitter.

7 Let him drink and forget his poverty
And remember his trouble no more.

8 Open your mouth for the mute,
For the [e]rights of all the [f]unfortunate.

9 Open your mouth, judge righteously,
And [g]defend the rights of the afflicted and needy.

Description of a Worthy Woman

10 An excellent wife, who can find?
For her worth is far above jewels.

11 The heart of her husband trusts in her,
And he will have no lack of gain.

12 She does him good and not evil
All the days of her life.

13 She looks for wool and flax
And works with her [h]hands [i]in delight.

14 She is like merchant ships;
She brings her food from afar.

15 She rises also while it is still night
And gives food to her household
And [j]portions to her maidens.

16 She considers a field and buys it;
From [k]her earnings she plants a vineyard.

17 She girds [l]herself with strength
And makes her arms strong.

18 She senses that her gain is good;
Her lamp does not go out at night.

19 She stretches out her hands to the distaff,
And her [m]hands grasp the spindle.

20 She [n]extends her hand to the poor,
And she stretches out her hands to the needy.

21 She is not afraid of the snow for her household,
For all her household are clothed with scarlet.

22 She makes coverings for herself;
Her clothing is fine linen and purple.

23 Her husband is known in the gates,
When he sits among the elders of the land.

24 She makes linen garments and sells them,
And [o]supplies belts to the [p]tradesmen.

25 Strength and dignity are her clothing,
And she smiles at the [q]future.

26 She opens her mouth in wisdom,
And the [r]teaching of kindness is on her tongue.

27 She looks well to the ways of her household,
And does not eat the bread of idleness.

28 Her children rise up and bless her;
Her husband also, and he praises her, saying:

29 “Many daughters have done nobly,
But you excel them all.”

30 Charm is deceitful and beauty is vain,
But a woman who [s]fears the Lord, she shall be praised.

31 Give her the [t]product of her hands,
And let her works praise her in the gates.


Footnotes:

  1. Proverbs 31:1 Or burden
  2. Proverbs 31:5 Lit judgment
  3. Proverbs 31:5 Lit sons of affliction
  4. Proverbs 31:6 Lit bitter of soul
  5. Proverbs 31:8 Lit judgment
  6. Proverbs 31:8 Lit sons of passing away
  7. Proverbs 31:9 Lit judge the afflicted
  8. Proverbs 31:13 Lit palms
  9. Proverbs 31:13 Or willingly
  10. Proverbs 31:15 Or prescribed tasks
  11. Proverbs 31:16 Lit the fruit of her palms
  12. Proverbs 31:17 Lit her loins
  13. Proverbs 31:19 Lit palms
  14. Proverbs 31:20 Lit spreads out her palm
  15. Proverbs 31:24 Lit gives
  16. Proverbs 31:24 Lit Canaanite
  17. Proverbs 31:25 Lit latter days
  18. Proverbs 31:26 Or law
  19. Proverbs 31:30 Or reverences
  20. Proverbs 31:31 Lit fruit
Proverbs 31

The Sayings of King Lemuel

1-3 Here’s an oracle King Lemuel’s mom taught him:
What would I say to the son I carried in my womb, the one I dedicated to God?  Don’t waste your time on women or throw away your life as a king.

4-7 Lemuel, it’s not good for kings to drink a lot of wine or for rulers to crave alcohol.  Their drinking may make them break their own laws or violate the rights of those in their care.  Alcohol is for people who are dying; wine is for people with a heavy heart.  They drink to forget their worries and troubles.

8-9 Speak up for those who are powerless; fight for the rights of the forgotten.  Speak up, do the right thing, and make sure the poor and needy are treated fair.

A Really Good Wife

10-12 A really good wife is a truly rare treasure.  She’s worth more than diamonds.  Her husband trusts her with his whole heart and she blesses his life.  She helps and never hurts him all the days of her life.

13-18 She buys the best raw materials and enjoys making things by hand.  She’s like the delivery man that brings surprise packages from far, far away; she brings the best, most delightfully unexpected food you can’t hardly ever get.  She gets up before the sun’s even out to start cooking for her family and she organizes the day’s events for the girls who’ll be helping her.  She inspects property and buys it; she invests her money in a profitable vineyard.  She’s a healthy, tireless hard worker.  She works late into the night to make sure her investments payoff.

19-25 She keeps her hands busy on the spindle spinning thread.  She is generous to the poor and warmly welcomes those who are in need.  She’s not afraid of snow because her family is warmly dressed in the very best clothing.  She puts together the best outfits, her’s are the finest material in splendid colors.  Her husband stands out to everyone in town and is welcome among the most important people in town.  She also sells fine clothing and supplies scarfs to the merchants.  She wears strength and dignity like a beautiful dress and joyfully looks forward to a very bright future.

26-27 Wisdom pours out every time she opens her mouth and her words shows everyone how to be kind. She’s never lazy. She manages her household well.

28-29 Her children proudly stand to bless her; her husband praises her too:  “Of all the good women in the world, you are the very best of all!”

30-31 A charming woman can mislead you and her physical beauty is an empty virtue, but a woman who reveres the Lord shines with His glorious splendor.




New American Standard Bible (NASB)
Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation
Pastor Chris’ Paraphrase of Proverbs (PCP)
Copyright © 2018 by Chris Mullis

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Day 30 of Pastor Chris' Paraphrase of Proverbs Devotional


Day 30  It is wise to know when enough is a enough.  It is even wiser to know your own heart and what scarcity and abundance do to you.  Wisest of all are those who are willing to deny themselves for their own good and the good of others.

Pastor Chris' Paraphrase of Proverbs 30:7-9
7-9 God, I only ask for two things; please give them to me before I die:

First, don’t let me be a liar or dishonest.

Second, please don’t make me too rich or too poor.  Just feed me what I need every day and nothing more. Otherwise, I might get so full of myself I turn away from You saying, “Who is this ‘Jehovah’?” Or if I am too poor, I might insult Your holy reputation by stealing.

The human appetite is a beast that never stops growing.  Our natural tendency is to want more and more.  We are never really satisfied.  People with real wisdom understand the brokenness of their own sin-sick heart and seek a new one from God.  Ask God for a new heart and practice being satisfied with less.  Those who are truly satisfied in life are not those with the most and biggest toys; it is those who have learned to be satisfied with that which God gives them.

Prayer
"Lord, give me a knew heart to replace my broken one.  Help me to practice satisfaction until I learn to be happy with everything You give and want nothing more.  Amen."

Read Proverbs Chapter 30
New American Standard Bible
Pastor Chris’ Paraphrase
Proverbs 30
The Words of Agur

1 The words of Agur the son of Jakeh, the [a]oracle.
The man declares to Ithiel, to Ithiel and Ucal:

2 Surely I am more stupid than any man,
And I do not have the understanding of a man.

3 Neither have I learned wisdom,
Nor do I have the knowledge of the Holy One.

4 Who has ascended into heaven and descended?
Who has gathered the wind in His fists?
Who has wrapped the waters in [b]His garment?
Who has established all the ends of the earth?
What is His name or His son’s name?
Surely you know!

5 Every word of God is tested;
He is a shield to those who take refuge in Him.

6 Do not add to His words
Or He will reprove you, and you will be proved a liar.

7 Two things I asked of You,
Do not refuse me before I die:

8 Keep deception and [c]lies far from me,
Give me neither poverty nor riches;
Feed me with the food that is my portion,

9 That I not be full and deny You and say, “Who is the Lord?”
Or that I not be in want and steal,
And profane the name of my God.

10 Do not slander a slave to his master,
Or he will curse you and you will be found guilty.

11 There is a [d]kind of man who curses his father
And does not bless his mother.

12 There is a [e]kind who is pure in his own eyes,
Yet is not washed from his filthiness.

13 There is a [f]kind—oh how lofty are his eyes!
And his eyelids are raised in arrogance.

14 There is a [g]kind of man whose teeth are like swords
And his jaw teeth like knives,
To devour the afflicted from the earth
And the needy from among men.

15 The leech has two daughters,
“Give,” “Give.”
There are three things that will not be satisfied,
Four that will not say, “Enough”:

16 [h]Sheol, and the barren womb,
Earth that is never satisfied with water,
And fire that never says, “Enough.”

17 The eye that mocks a father
And [i]scorns a mother,
The ravens of the valley will pick it out,
And the young eagles will eat it.

18 There are three things which are too wonderful for me,
Four which I do not understand:

19 The way of an eagle in the sky,
The way of a serpent on a rock,
The way of a ship in the middle of the sea,
And the way of a man with a maid.

20 This is the way of an adulterous woman:
She eats and wipes her mouth,
And says, “I have done no wrong.”

21 Under three things the earth quakes,
And under four, it cannot bear up:

22 Under a slave when he becomes king,
And a fool when he is satisfied with food,

23 Under an unloved woman when she gets a husband,
And a maidservant when she supplants her mistress.

24 Four things are small on the earth,
But they are exceedingly wise:

25 The ants are not a strong people,
But they prepare their food in the summer;

26 The [j]shephanim are not mighty people,
Yet they make their houses in the rocks;

27 The locusts have no king,
Yet all of them go out in ranks;

28 The lizard you may grasp with the hands,
Yet it is in kings’ palaces.

29 There are three things which are stately in their march,
Even four which are stately when they walk:

30 The lion which is mighty among beasts
And does not [k]retreat before any,

31 The [l]strutting rooster, the male goat also,
And a king when his army is with him.

32 If you have been foolish in exalting yourself
Or if you have plotted evil, put your hand on your mouth.

33 For the [m]churning of milk produces butter,
And pressing the nose brings forth blood;
So the [n]churning of anger produces strife.

Footnotes:

  1. Proverbs 30:1 Or burden
  2. Proverbs 30:4 Lit the
  3. Proverbs 30:8 Lit words of falsehood
  4. Proverbs 30:11 Or generation
  5. Proverbs 30:12 Or generation
  6. Proverbs 30:13 Or generation
  7. Proverbs 30:14 Or generation
  8. Proverbs 30:16 I.e. The nether world
  9. Proverbs 30:17 Lit despises to obey
  10. Proverbs 30:26 Small, shy, furry animals (Hyrax syriacus) found in the peninsula of the Sinai, northern Israel, and the region round the Dead Sea; KJV coney, rig NASB badgers
  11. Proverbs 30:30 Lit turn back
  12. Proverbs 30:31 Lit girt in the loins
  13. Proverbs 30:33 Lit pressing
  14. Proverbs 30:33 Lit pressing
Proverbs 30

The Sayings of Agur

1 The sayings of the prophet Agur, Solomon’s son, which he gave to Ithiel and Ucal:

2 I’m the crudest person I know.  I’m an idiot.  

3 I haven’t learned anything and I’m completely unaware of what’s holy.

4 Who’s been up to heaven and back?  Who’s cupped his hands together to hold all the winds?  Who can soak up all the water on earth with the hem of his robe?  Who created everything you find in this world? What’s his name? Who’s his son?  Tell me if you know.

5 Everything God says is pure.  He protects those who trust Him. 

6 Don’t put words in His mouth or He’ll scold you and everyone will know your lie.

7-9 God, I only ask for two things; please give them to me before I die:
First, don’t let me be a liar or dishonest.
Second, please don’t make me too rich or too poor.  Just feed me what I need every day and nothing more. Otherwise, I might get so full of myself I turn away from You saying, “Who is this ‘Jehovah’?” Or if I am too poor, I might insult Your holy reputation by stealing.

10 Don’t badmouth a worker to their employer.  They will curse you and you will pay for what you said.

11-14 A scornful generation disrespects fathers and criticizes mothers. A hypocritical generation thinks they’re perfect but is really filthy with sin. An arrogant generation looks down on others and thinks it’s better than everyone else. A greedy generation wants more and more, even taking advantage of the poor and needy, but they are never satisfied.

15-16 The leech’s two daughters beg constantly, “More! More!”  Three things are never satisfied; four have never even said the word “enough”: the grave, a woman longing for a child, the thirsty dessert, and a burning fire.  These are never fully satisfied.

17 Eyes that roll when their father speaks or stare contemptuously when their mother tells them to do something will get pecked out by ravens in the river valley and eaten by vultures.

18-19 There are three things that are just beyond me; four I’ll never understand: how an eagle soars in the sky, a snake slithers through the rocks, a ship sails on the ocean, and how a man loves a woman.

20 This is what a cheating wife does:  she devours a man and wipes her lips. She looks around innocently and says, “What? I didn't do anything.”

21-23 Three thing make the earth quiver beneath us; four completely exhaust it:  a bondservant who becomes a king, a fool who always has plenty to eat, a hateful woman who somehow gets married, and a servant girl who takes her mistress' place.

24-28 There are four things that are so small, but they are more clever than the wisest people:  tiny little ants aren’t strong at all, but they store up food all summer long, hyraxes are weak and shy, so they make their home high up in the desolate rocks, locusts have no one to lead them, but they still swarm out together like an army to cut everything to pieces, lizards, which are easy to catch, but live everywhere--even in the king’s palace.

29-31 There are three things that walk around full of pride; four full of magnificence: the lion, which is the king of the beasts and doesn’t run from anyone, a rooster strutting his stuff, a male goat ready to butt his opponent, and a king parading before a people who love him.

32-33 If you’re bragging about yourself like an idiot or have a bad attitude, please keep your mouth shut; because if you press curds, it makes cheese and if you punch a nose it bleeds.  Well, if you keep pushing someone who’s angry, it’s going to cause big trouble.



New American Standard Bible (NASB)
Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation
Pastor Chris’ Paraphrase of Proverbs (PCP)
Copyright © 2018 by Chris Mullis

Monday, November 19, 2018

A Kingdom with a Mission


Introduction
Those who follow Jesus Christ--who fall down before Him and worship Jesus as Lord and Savior--are God’s chosen people, a royal priesthood.  We are citizens and kings and queens in the Kingdom of God.  We live in this world, which is not our home, as royal ambassadors.  Often, we find we live in hostile territory, for the people and systems and attitudes and philosophies of this world are opposed to the Kingdom of God and His rightful rule.  So, Christians trust in Jesus and we endure the trials of this life, even as we live with the dignity and confidence of God’s royal family.  We trust what Jesus said.  Jesus promised He was coming back and when He comes, the Kingdom of God will come completely.  This world and all it’s brokenness will melt away and God will make Heaven and Earth perfect once again.  There will be no more sin or sorrow or suffering or death.

It’s a wonderful vision of hope.  We long for the Day.  Unfortunately, Christians sometimes grow so comfortable with the hope that Someday Jesus will come and fix all the brokeness around us that we forget we have a job to do while we are here.  “Someday,” we think, “God will make all things right.  Someday, we will go to heaven.  Someday, we will sit on thrones and rule in the Kingdom of God.”

But Jesus gave us a mission to accomplish today.  We are not to stand idly by waiting for Someday to come.  In fact, Jesus had harsh words for all those who do nothing during the wait.  We are on a mission to spread the Kingdom of God all around us.  This is not optional.  It is what true followers of the King do.  It is how we live.

Jesus’ Disciples wanted to know when the world as we know it would come to an end and the Kingdom of God would be fully realized.  They wanted to know how they would know it was coming (Matthew 24:3).  Jesus gave them some clues. He said fear mongering, devastating wars, religious imposters, and natural disasters would all precede His return to usher in the full Kingdom of God.  He warned sin and persecution would be rampant in the world.  We already see some of these these signs in the world around us:  hurricanes and wildfires, political leaders and media outlets telling blatant lies, the Bible being scorned and forgotten, pastors caught up in scandals, and heresy being taught in the church.  

But Jesus also said in Matthew 24:14, “The Good News about the Kingdom will be preached throughout the whole world, so that all nations will hear it; and then the end will come.”

So the faithful have important work to do.  The signs of the times ought not to dissuades us from our important work.  To the contrary, it should make us more determine.  Our mission is urgent.  We don’t know how much time we have left--years, days, or hours?  But this we do know:  Jesus is coming again and we are closer now to Jesus second coming than we ever were before.

People need to be careful.  So many people--especially “good people” (and this includes a lot of people who go to church) have the mindset that everything is just going to be ok in the end.  That feeling of false-security makes so many complacent and lazy.  For if you feel like you don’t have to do anything but sit back and wait, then you’ll forget about God’s Kingdom and His mission.

Jesus warned His Disciples (and us) about that very danger.  And that’s the subject of my message today.  As a king in the royal priesthood of God, I share three warnings Jesus gave for everyone waiting for his return.  The warnings are found in three parables Jesus taught in the 25th chapter of the Gospel of Matthew about what His followers should do while they wait for His return.  These are some of the last lessons Jesus taught before he was arrested and crucified. 

Read Matthew 25
Parable 1 - The Parable of the Ten Virgins - Matthew 25:1-13 
Parale 2 - The Parable of the Three Servants and the Master's Silver - Matthew 25:14-30
Parable 3 - The Parable of the Sheep and Goats - Matthew 25:31-46
The overall theme of all three parables is this:  Jesus is coming, but no one knows when.  Therefore, we can’t waste any time.  We need to get ready and stay ready, because we don’t know the day or the hour He will return.  You can’t wait until the last minute to get ready.  You must use all the time you have to prepare for the coming of the King.

Jesus’ First Warning - Make Sure You Spirit is Ready.  (The Parable of the Ten Virgins - Matthew 25:1-13)
In order to be ready spiritually, you need to have the fruit of the Holy Spirit.  I preached a whole sermon series on these recently.  You can read them on my blog or watch videos of the sermons on my church’s Facebook page.  

Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self control.  These are the virtues the Holy Spirit wants to grow in us.  Now, you can’t grow these yourself.  They are a product of the Holy Spirit.  They grow in us as we cooperate with the Holy Spirit.  We can’t make them grow, but we can create in our hearts an environment that nurtures their growth.  

Growing the Fruit of the Spirit takes time.  It doesn’t happen overnight.  That’s why it’s imperative that you don’t wait.  You need to start now!  Jesus said it’s urgent, because you don’t know when He might return.  We you be ready?  Will you have enough oil for your lamp?  You see, you can’t borrow it from anyone else.  

Our mission then (besides making sure we have “oil in our own lamps”) is to make encourage our friends, our family, our neighbors, everyone to open their hearts to the Holy Spirit too that He might grow in their lives love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self control.  We can’t give them these virtues, but God can and He will if they will turn from their sins and turn to Jesus Christ.  We must urge them to, because the Kingdom of God is near!

Jesus’ Second Warning - Make Sure You Invest Your Resources in the Kingdom
(The Parable of the Three Servants and the Master’s Silver - Matthew 25:14-30)
The Kingdom of God has a mission.  We want everyone to repent of their rebellious sin and turn to God.  He is the King of kings and Lord of lords, the rightful ruler of all.  We want everyone to willingly bow before our King and know the joy of His love.  This mission--to make disciples of Jesus Christ--is our number one priority.  It comes before everything else.

We are blessed with many different resources--time and money (of which there never seems to be enough), but also our talents and abilities (reference Last Wednesday’s talent show).  All these things are given to us by God and He expects us use them in the Kingdom’s mission to make disciples of Jesus Christ.  It doesn’t care how much you have.  Some have more ability than others, some more time, some more talent.  But we’ve all been given something to invest.

We won’t be judged on how well we did so much as whether we tried.  God knows our ability and our limitations.  He is not upset when we try and come up short.  What disappoints God most is when we are too afraid to try or (worse) too distracted by other things to invest ourselves fully in God’s Kingdom.  What will you do when you come face to face with the great King of kings and must reveal what you did with all He gave you in this life?  Will you say with trembling voice, “I was so afraid to use what you gave me so i buried it and kept it hidden away.”  Or worse, will you find you must confess with fearful tears in your eyes, “I wasted most of my life and most my time and most of my money and most of my talent chasing the fleeting things of this world instead of investing in the Kingdom’s noble goals.”  And where will all your trophies be then?  What will you have to show for all your striving.  Nothing.  And there you will stand, empty handed before the Lord of lords.  And what of your friends and neighbors, your family, and those you worked with?  What will you do when they testify against you, “She knew King and she never introduced me!  He saw me running towards destruction, and he never cried out to warn me!  They knew how to be saved and they never told me!”

Jesus’ Third Warning - Make Sure You Show Compassion to Those in Need.  (The Parable of the Sheep and Goats - Matthew 25:31-46)
God has been so patient and compassionate with us.  Jesus’ amazing grace saved us from our sins and restored us to a perfect relationship with our Creator God.  He brought many of us out of very miserable situations; some of us are still in the process of being rescued.  He makes us kings and queens in His royal priesthood when we trust Jesus.  It’s all too magnificent to believe!  We have so much to be thankful for this week!

We may be tempted to set back and just enjoy basking in the glory of it all—to spend all our time feasting in the Kingdom.  There are times for that.  Thanksgiving is a feast to celebrate all for which we are thankful.  Chief among all our blessing is the gracious gift of salvation is Jesus Christ .  And every Sunday is an occasion for us to come and worship—to sing praises to the God of our salvation, to join with our brothers and sisters in the royal family of God and glorify his name and lift up our hearts in joyous adoration.

However, we can’t be lazy or complacent in God’s Kingdom.  There’s too much at stake.  Jesus is coming soon and we better be ready.  There’s too much hurting and suffering in this world.  There are so many others who need compassion and saving too.  To forget or neglect them is the ultimate insult to the Savior who gave everything to come rescue us when we absolutely didn’t deserve it. 

So, Jesus’ final warning to the royal family of God is to make sure you show compassion to those in need.  And I want to make sure you know this about Jesus’ warning.  He specifically instructs His followers to show compassion to certain people.  In Matthew 25:35-36 he said, “For I was hungry, and you fed me. I was thirsty, and you gave me a drink. I was a stranger, and you invited me into your home. 36 I was naked, and you gave me clothing. I was sick, and you cared for me. I was in prison, and you visited me.’
Jesus clearly wants us to focus on helping people who are in need—people who are hungry and thirsty, people who are considered strangers, people who are naked (not adequately clothed and are vulnerable), people who are sick (physically or mentally), and those who are in prison.

Now, most folks who go to church regularly don’t mind sending a card to a friend when they’re sick.  We don’t mind going out to lunch with someone from our Sunday school class after church.  And we love it when a new family visits church on Sunday—especially if they seem like a nice family who has it all together.  But what about feeding a hungry stranger down at the City of Refuge on a Monday night?  Or how would you feel about sitting down to eat with a complete stranger who stopped by the church for a Wednesday night supper even though they looked dirty or smelled like cigarette smoke?  And when was the last time you visited someone in prison?  Have you ever?  Have you ever even written a letter to someone in prison?

At the end of the Age, when Jesus comes back, some people will inherit the Kingdom He prepared for them and others will be cast into hell and Jesus says the decision will be based on how we treat—not the rich, not the well-to-do family who visits our church, not our friends we feel comfortable around, but on how we treat—those who are hungry and thirsty, who are strangers to us, who are don’t have adequate clothing, and those who are sick and in prison.

Invitation to Join the Mission
Those who believe in Jesus Christ, who have been saved by His grace and bow to Him as Lord, are on a mission.  Our mission is to make disciples of Jesus Christ—to share the Good News about God’s Kingdom throughout the whole.  We have plenty to share it with right here in Whitfield County.  There is a time for celebrating and a time for work.  For many, this week will be a time of resting and celebrating Thanksgiving.  Sunday worship is also a time to celebrate.  I hope you enjoy the rest and celebration.  But then remember, there is a time for work too.  And we serve in a Kingdom with a mission.  When the feast is over, when the celebration is done, it’s time to get back to the work of the Kingdom.  I invite you today to make a commitment to join the mission—to intentionally choose to:
· Make sure your spirit is ready
· Make Sure You’re Investing Your Resources in the Kingdom
· Make Sure You Show Compassion and Love to Those in Need

Day 29 of Pastor Chris' Paraphrase of Proverbs Devotional


Day 29  Children are the biggest investment in a parent's life.  You will spend more time, money, and energy on them than anything else.  A wise investment early on can yield a life of rewards.  However, being neglectful, lazy, distracted, or wavering in your discipline will lead to serious problems later.

Pastor Chris' Paraphrase of Proverbs 29:1, 15, & 17
1 There is no hope for stubborn people who always ignore correction.  They will soon be broken beyond repair.

15 It’s better to correct children with a switch so they learn wisdom.  Let children have their own way now and they’ll turn out to be a disgrace.

17 Discipline your kids and they will give you peace; they will fill your life with joy.

Invest wisely in your children.  You have about 13 years to teach them what they need to know; the rest is just supervision and letting go.  Be brave, firm, diligent, and consistent to teach and discipline them well.  Pray for guidance to know when to hold them tight and when to let them go.  Seek all the grace and help you can get and enjoy the blessings.

Prayer
"Father, thank You for being the perfect parent to me.  Guide me that I may follow Your example with my own children.  Help me understand how to discipline them, when to hold them tightly and when to let them go.  And may they bring glory to Your name all their life.  Amen."

Read Proverbs Chapter 29
New American Standard Bible
Pastor Chris’ Paraphrase
Proverbs 29
Warnings and Instructions
1 A man who hardens his neck after much reproof
Will suddenly be broken [a]beyond remedy.

2 When the righteous [b]increase, the people rejoice,
But when a wicked man rules, people groan.

3 A man who loves wisdom makes his father glad,
But he who keeps company with harlots wastes his wealth.

4 The king gives stability to the land by justice,
But a man who takes bribes overthrows it.

5 A man who flatters his neighbor
Is spreading a net for his steps.

6 By transgression an evil man is ensnared,
But the righteous sings and rejoices.

7 The righteous [c]is concerned for the rights of the poor,
The wicked does not understand such [d]concern.

8 Scorners set a city aflame,
But wise men turn away anger.

9 When a wise man has a controversy with a foolish man,
[e]The foolish man either rages or laughs, and there is no rest.

10 Men of bloodshed hate the blameless,
But the upright [f]are concerned for his life.

11 A fool [g]always loses his temper,
But a wise man holds it back.

12 If a ruler pays attention to falsehood,
All his ministers become wicked.

13 The poor man and the oppressor [h]have this in common:
The Lord gives light to the eyes of both.

14 If a king judges the poor with truth,
His throne will be established forever.

15 The rod and reproof give wisdom,
But a child [i]who gets his own way brings shame to his mother.

16 When the wicked [j]increase, transgression increases;
But the righteous will see their fall.

17 Correct your son, and he will give you comfort;
He will also [k]delight your soul.

18 Where there is no [l]vision, the people are unrestrained,
But happy is he who keeps the law.

19 A slave will not be instructed by words alone;
For though he understands, there will be no response.

20 Do you see a man who is hasty in his words?
There is more hope for a fool than for him.

21 He who pampers his slave from childhood
Will in the end find him to be a son.

22 An angry man stirs up strife,
And a hot-tempered man abounds in transgression.

23 A man’s pride will bring him low,
But a humble spirit will obtain honor.

24 He who is a partner with a thief hates his own life;
He hears the oath but tells nothing.

25 The fear of man [m]brings a snare,
But he who trusts in the Lord will be exalted.

26 Many seek the ruler’s [n]favor,
But justice for man comes from the Lord.

27 An unjust man is abominable to the righteous,
And he who is upright in the way is abominable to the wicked.

Footnotes:

  1. Proverbs 29:1 Lit and there is no remedy
  2. Proverbs 29:2 Or become great
  3. Proverbs 29:7 Lit knows the cause
  4. Proverbs 29:7 Lit knowledge
  5. Proverbs 29:9 Lit He
  6. Proverbs 29:10 Lit seek his soul
  7. Proverbs 29:11 Lit sends forth all his spirit
  8. Proverbs 29:13 Lit meet together
  9. Proverbs 29:15 Lit left to himself
  10. Proverbs 29:16 Or become great
  11. Proverbs 29:17 Lit give delight to
  12. Proverbs 29:18 Or revelation
  13. Proverbs 29:25 Lit gives
  14. Proverbs 29:26 Lit face
Proverbs 29
1 There is no hope for stubborn people who always ignore correction.  They will soon be broken beyond repair.

2 Everyone cheers up when the people in control do the right thing, but they moan when the ungodly come to power.

3 People who love wisdom give their parents true joy, but you’ll waste all your money if you hang out with adulterers.

4 Honest rulers give stability to their land, but those who twist justice for money ruin it.

5 Someone who flatters their neighbor is really setting a trap for them.

6 Immoral people fall into a trap when they cross the line, but those who live the right way sing for joy.

7 People who live right are fair to the poor who are barely getting by; the ungodly could care less.

8 People who mock sarcastically fan the flames of anger around them, but a more careful person calms everybody down.

9 When a wise man has a dispute with a fool, there will be sarcastic ranting but no resolution.

10 Bloodthirsty people hate the innocent and try to kill those who live right.

11 Only a fool trumpets their opinion out when they’re angry; a wise person restrains themself.

12 If a ruler is swayed by lies, his advisors will all be dishonest.

13 The poor and the tyrant have something in common: Jehovah gave them both life.

14 If a ruler is fair to the poor, his honor will be remembered forever.

15 It’s better to correct children with a switch so they learn wisdom.  Let children have their own way now and they’ll turn out to be a disgrace.  

16 When the ungodly are in charge, people sin more and more, but those who live right will see the ungodly fall apart.

17 Discipline your kids and they will give you peace; they will fill your life with joy.

18 Without God’s vision, people are totally exposed and vulnerable; you can’t believe how happy they are to be clothed with God’s Law.

19 It takes more than words to correct a bondservant.  They may understand and still not obey.

20 You’ve seen people who always say things without thinking.  A fool is better off than they are.

21 A worker that’s pampered his whole life will cause you as much grief as a spoiled rotten child.

22 An angry man fights about everything and a hot-head is always crossing the line.

23 Pride leads to humiliation; a humble spirit finds honor.

24 You must really hate yourself if you share a thief's stolen property.  You can’t tell anyone where it came from, even if you swear an oath.

25 It’s a trap to always worry people are out to get you; just trust Jehovah to keep you safe.

26 Everyone wants to go see important people for help, but Jehovah is the source of justice.

27 People who live right can’t stand to be around bad people.  The ungodly can’t stand to be around those who live for God.


New American Standard Bible (NASB)
Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation
Pastor Chris’ Paraphrase of Proverbs (PCP)
Copyright © 2018 by Chris Mullis