These words of our Lord should give us pause for thought.
Each of us must ask ourselves if we are on the narrow path.
““Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.” Matthew 7:13-14 NIV
How do we enter through the narrow gate? Consider this as you ponder these words today.
There is but one way to heaven, and his name is Jesus! it may sound nonsensical, as how can a man be a path to heaven? But Jesus is no me a man, but God in human form.
Our feeble attempt at goodness are not sufficient to overcome the greatness of our sinfulness. Someone must pay the penalty for sin… Either we do, or we look for a substitute.
Thank God for Jesus! Who pays the price of our sin so that we may go free!
Jesus is the only way to heaven. No one comes to the father except through him. as you meditate on these verses today, praise God for Jesus!
If you live outside of the UK, it may be difficult to grasp the magnitude of feeling surrounding the death of Queen Elizabeth II.
Talking to many people about this, lots feel a genuine sense of loss at her death. Few have actually met her, and yet have been impacted by her passing.
Her many decades of service, her kindness, and her Christian faith all play a part in this.
Another reason people have felt her death so profoundly is because it reminds us of our own losses. for me, this event has reminded me of my own late grandmother – who we affectionately referred to as the Queen of our family.
If you are experiencing loss at the moment, the pain of grief, or have been reminded of such things, then I pray for you today.
Heavenly father, we thank you for the life and service of our late Queen. we pray for her family at the moment, asking you to comfort them, and indeed, to comfort all those who feel her loss.
Lord, I pray for all of those who are reminded of their own grief at the moment. May you also comfort them, strengthening them and giving them peace.
Let us remember, with Thanksgiving, those we have lost. we thank you, dear God, for the impact these people have had on our lives. We pray to, that we may be a positive influence in the lives of those around us.
We thank you heavenly father, for your grace and mercy toward us. May you bless King Charles and the UK government with wisdom at this time, as they lead the nation.
As we consider the Christian example of our late Queen, may the nation of the UK return to faith in Christ.
“After this I looked, and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and before the Lamb. They were wearing white robes and were holding palm branches in their hands. And they cried out in a loud voice: “Salvation belongs to our God, who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb.”” Revelation 7:9-10 NIV
My family and I are experiencing a challenging time at the moment. this means I am blogging on the go, and so please excuse any formatting or lack thereof!
Over the past few days, I do not think I have stood still for one moment! My time with God has been seriously restricted, as has my time in his word.
Can you relate? Have you had similar seasons in life?
I rejoice that I have had opportunities to store God’s word in my heart in the past, and can draw on those resources now.
I strongly encourage you to hide God’s word in your heart during the sunny seasons in life. Life will always throw times of trouble at us, but we can prepare ahead of time.
This verse tells us that by hiding God’s word in our hearts, we will reduce the risk of sin. The more Bible we have within us, the stronger we will be to face temptation when it comes. And temptation is harder to resist during times of trouble, when we are tired or stressed.
Today I share a timely post from Nicola over at Eaglesight – A blog I highly recommend!
I find myself feeling overwhelmed at the moment, trying to keep up with the demands of life and family. so this reminder in due season that Christ is my anchor and loves me dearly, is much appreciated.
How about you?
Nicola also links to another blog by Alan, which I also encourage you to have a read of.
I woke in the early hours with thoughts racing through my mind of all the tasks I had not done and were overdue. As I went through them one by one I …
We have been studying our way through the sixth chapter of Daniel in a short series of posts.
In the first one – An Excellent Man – we thought about how Daniel conducted himself, and what lessons there are for us in our modern world. In part two – No Compromise – we saw another aspect of Daniel’s excellence, in that he absolutely refused to compromise his faith irrespective of the consequences. He was prepared to die in the Lion’s Den rather than deny his God. In our third instalment – No Way Out – we see that King Darius is tied up in his own words, and finds no escape.
Seeing no way out, King Darius is forced to have Daniel arrested.
Then the king gave a command, and Daniel was brought and thrown into the den of lions. The king said to Daniel, “May your God, whom you constantly serve, rescue you Himself!” 17 A stone was brought and laid over the mouth of the den; and the king sealed it with his own signet ring and with the signet rings of his nobles, so that nothing would be changed concerning Daniel. 18 Then the king returned to his palace and spent the night fasting; and no music or entertainment was brought before him, and he remained unable to sleep.
Daniel 6:16-18 Amp
Verse 16 is somewhat matter of fact. It simply says the king commanded, Daniel is arrest and then thrown into the den. I think it is interesting that we have yet to hear Daniel utter a single word. Even now, as he is taken by force, the Bible does not record him protesting or arguing or begging at all. Now I am not saying Daniel remained silent throughout the whole affair, simply that the Bible does not record him saying anything. Is that relevant? Is there some hidden gem here? Perhaps, or perhaps not. One point I do draw out is that we have not the merest hint of Daniel speaking foolish or idle words, and this is in stark contrast to King Darius who regretted his commands.
The king says to Daniel, “May your God, whom you constantly serve, rescue you Himself!” I emphasise the words “your” and “constantly.”
The king recognises that this God is Daniel’s God. Darius sees that there is a personal relationship between Daniel and his God. This will be important later on when we close out the chapter – so keep it in mind.
I also note that Daniel did not just serve God, but constantly served Him. It implies that Daniel has no apparent lapses or displays half-hearted worship. Instead, Daniel is steady and unshakeable in his walk with God. Indeed, that very commitment is what has landed him in the den of lions. We noted from verse 10 of this chapter that when Daniel hears that the law forbidding prayer to anyone but King Darius has been signed, he goes straight home and prays – three times a day – just as he always had. Daniel is steadfast in prayer, and everyone knew it. What a lesson for us! Are we so dedicated? Are we so unshakeably steady? Do people look at us in church on a Sunday and wonder if we’ll still be following Christ in a week’s time? I pray not!
So, Daniel is lowered into the pit, and as I said above, no mention is made of him having said a word. Yet this passage is not dissimilar to another situation we find earlier on in the book of Daniel. Earlier on in Daniel 3, we read the account of his three friends and they are commanded to worship an idol in the form of a giant golden statue. They refuse. Like Daniel, they now faced death – not from lions, but from a raging furnace turned up seven times hotter than normal. As they are arrested and thrown in, they tell the king of the day (Nebuchadnezzar) “Our God is able to rescue us, and even if He does not, we will still not bow down and worship this idol.”
Daniel was seemingly not present at the fiery furnace, or at least no mention is made of him. I wonder if he was familiar with the account though, and if he knew the words that his friends had spoken. If so, perhaps he would have been saying to the king, “My God is able to rescue me from the mouths of these hungry lions, but even if he does not, I will not pray to you Darius.”
Whatever you are going through right now, you can take these words as your own. “Jesus is well able to rescue me from this [death, illness, job loss, persecution, insert your own situation here] but even if He does not, I will still follow Him with all my heart.”
A stone is placed over the mouth of the den, and it is sealed with the king’s seal so that no one can interfere. This should remind us of another den/tomb, sealed with another stone, which was also sealed/guarded so that no one could interfere…. And look how that turned out!
So Darius returned to his palace, refuses food and entertainment, and spends the entire night worrying about Daniel. Daniel meanwhile, is in the den, and we know not what is happening to him. As I close this post, I wonder who of the two had the better night’s sleep? The king, by worrying, could not change the outcome. Neither could Daniel. Perhaps as he rested and trusted in his God, Daniel was able to curl up and sleep right next to the lions.
You know doubt know how the story ends, and if not, we will find out next time. The important question for me is why? And what, if anything, is the lesson for us as the church? I will try to draw this out next time, and bring this series to an end. If you have enjoyed it, do share with someone else. And as ever, thanks for reading.