the good seed 2022 Monday, December 05, 2022 6:06 AM GMT+1
       Reset Password        Click here to sign up.
 
daily devotionals online
Home
       our daily bread
Our Daily Bread
       the good seed
The Good Seed
       the LORD is near
The LORD is near
       andrew wommack
Andrew Wommack
       billy graham
Billy Graham
 
christian topics
Christian
       general topics
General
       interesting topics
Interesting
 
 

The Good Seed Daily Devotional for 2022

Topics

Saturday, December 31, 2022

The days and years of our life

We do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal.

Today, if you will hear his (God’s) voice, do not harden your hearts.

2 Corinthians 4:18; Hebrews 4:7.

The days and years of our life
Solomon, the king reputed for his wisdom and intelligence was also exceedingly rich (2 Chronicles 9:22.23). Yet all his experience led to one final conclusion that might surprise us: “Vanity of vanities, all is vanity” (Ecclesiastes 1:2). This expression correctly characterises...More



Friday, December 30, 2022

It was easy to see that he was quite satisfied with the...

He was despised, and we did not esteem him.
Isaiah 53:3.

It was easy to see that he was quite satisfied with the reason he gave for not accepting the calendar that I offered him. No, he didn’t want one this time, as its place on the wall was already taken.

My thoughts now are not occupied with the place where the calendar hung, nor whether it got dusty on a shelf or landed in the rubbish bin. I am concerned about the place that Jesus Christ would like to have in our life. Could that be occupied by other things?

We know the saying: “Tell me who you go about with, and I’ll tell you...More



Thursday, December 29, 2022

The bridge over the Firth of Tay

If you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised him from the dead, you will be saved. … For the scripture says, Whoever believes on him will not be put to shame.
Romans 10:9.11.

The bridge over the Firth of Tay
On the 28th December 1879 a hurricane was raging over the east coast of Scotland, wind force 10 to 11. The two mile long bridge over the estuary of the Firth of Tay was regarded as a technical masterpiece that would surely withstand any amount of strain.

At 7:00 p.m. a train was approaching from the south. It slowed down, so that the...More



Wednesday, December 28, 2022

Perhaps

All things work together for good to those who love God.
Romans 8:28.

Perhaps
From his imprisonment in Rome the apostle Paul sent Onesimus, a runaway slave, back to his master Philemon, During his flight Onesimus came into contact with the apostle and was converted to Jesus Christ. Paul ordered him to return to his master with a letter in which Philemon was requested to welcome his slave benevolently. Paul wrote: “Perhaps he departed for a while for this purpose.” The slave’s escape became the occasion of his conversion and the means by which his master Philemon could regard him as “a beloved...More



Tuesday, December 27, 2022

The aberrations of unbelief

After Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men from the east came to Jerusalem, saying, Where is he who has been born King of the Jews? … When Herod the king heard this, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him.
Matthew 2:1-3.

The aberrations of unbelief
In the account of the visit of the Magi who came to worship the Child Jesus, the cruelty of Herod is equalled only by his lack of logic.

Here the unbeliever takes the announcement of the Magi seriously. He already sees in the Child a usurper to the throne. If he exists, Herod thinks, he...More



Monday, December 26, 2022

However could this happen?

The word … preaching peace through Jesus Christ … you know: … Jesus … went about doing good, … for God was with him.
Acts 10:36-39.

However could this happen?
Christmas is the festival of the year for many. But Jesus is absent. One historian even rejoiced that Christmas had become what it originally was: a heathen feast without God.

You must have heard of Jesus Christ. Who is the Man after whom the years A.D. (Anno Domini – in the year of the Lord) have been numbered since His coming?

It is true that His birth took place discreetly. The only ones informed at the...More



Sunday, December 25, 2022

The young Child and His mother

Great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifested in the flesh.

God sent forth his Son, born of a woman.

They saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down and worshipped him.

1 Timothy 3:16; Galatians 4:4; Matthew 2:11.

The young Child and His mother
The young child Jesus was born in Bethlehem. Some wise men from the east, aware of His birth through the presence of a star, came to worship the future King of the Jews. King Herod heard of Him and sought to kill Him out of jealousy, but God instructed Joseph how to keep “the young Child and His mother” safe....More



Saturday, December 24, 2022

This “tender plant”, of which the prophet Isaiah had foretold that...

He shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground.
Isaiah 53:2.

This “tender plant”, of which the prophet Isaiah had foretold that it would appear like a root out of dry ground, was none other than the Lord Jesus Christ.

His genealogy as the Messiah, His lineage at the time of His birth resembled rather a stump than a royal family tree. Both Mary, the mother of Jesus, and Joseph were descendants of the kingly house of David. But they were poor without any sign of royal majesty.

The prophet Micah had stated long before: “But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah,...More



Friday, December 23, 2022

At Christmas time a young boy was once asked by his teacher...

The desire of all nations shall come.

Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and bear a Son, and they shall call his name Immanuel, which is translated, God with us.
Haggai 2:7 (J.N.D.); Matthew 1:23.

At Christmas time a young boy was once asked by his teacher, “What would you like best of all for Christmas?” The boy thought of the framed picture at home with the photo of his father, whom he had loved so much and who was no longer there. Then he said quietly, “Most of all I would like my Daddy to come out of the frame and be with us again.”

The boy had expressed in words people’s...More



Thursday, December 22, 2022

This verse from the Bible casts light distinctly on the circumstances...

When Herod the king heard this, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him.
Matthew 2:3.

This verse from the Bible casts light distinctly on the circumstances prevalent among the inhabitants of Jerusalem at the time of Jesus’ birth. Jesus Christ, the promised King of the Jews, who had been expected for so long, had finally been born; yet none of the elite among the nation was aware of it. King Herod’s ignorance need not surprise us: he was not an Israelite, but an Idumean, a descendant of Esau, Jacob’s brother. Shouldn’t the Jewish scribes have known of this great event? Weren’t they expecting the...More



Wednesday, December 21, 2022

An altar, a tent and a well

He (Isaac) built an altar there and called on the name of the LORD, and he pitched his tent there; and there Isaac’s servants dug a well.
Genesis 26:25.

An altar, a tent and a well
In Beersheba Isaac received a personal message from God that strengthened the patriarch’s life of faith (v. 24). What he then undertook in Beersheba we can apply spiritually for ourselves.

Isaac built an altar and called upon the name of the LORD. The altar speaks of the basis of our fellowship with God. Because Jesus Christ died on the cross, we have, as the redeemed, free access to God. Through prayer...More



Tuesday, December 20, 2022

The Redeemer Jesus Christ

In him (Jesus Christ) we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace.
Ephesians 1:7.

The Redeemer Jesus Christ
The Bay of Rio de Janeiro is a magnificent, picturesque site. The city of more than six million inhabitants is dominated by the gigantic statue of The Redeemer Christ. Almost 125 feet high, it has become the emblem of the city. Like the crosses erected at road junctions in parts of the country, it is part of the countryside. Among the inhabitants of the city who cast a glance at it, or the thousands of people who view the monument every...More



Monday, December 19, 2022

The language of nature

Since the creation of the world his invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead.
Romans 1:20.

The language of nature
God is the Author of two great books that He has placed at the disposal of mankind: the Bible and nature. Through his intelligence man should be able to discern and recognise the eternal power and deity of the One who is the origin of everything and therefore its Creator.

It is, however, only “by faith” that we understand that the worlds were formed by the word of God, so that whatever is seen...More



Sunday, December 18, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (72)

His parents said these things because they feared the Jews, for the Jews had agreed already that if anyone confessed that he was Christ, he would be put out of the synagogue. Therefore his parents said, He is of age; ask him. So they again called the man who was blind, and said to him, Give God the glory! We know that this man is a sinner. He answered and said, Whether he is a sinner or not I do not know. One thing I know: that though I was blind, now I see.
John 9:22-25.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (72)
The blind man’s parents feared the religious leaders and referred them back to their son...More



Saturday, December 17, 2022

Foolishness and weakness – attributes of God?

The foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men.

The message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.

1 Corinthians 1:25.18.

Foolishness and weakness – attributes of God?
If the first of today’s verses above were not in the Bible, no-one would dare to attribute such characteristics to God! How can God, the Creator of the universe display weakness, and how can one assert that “God, alone wise” (Romans 16:27) can be foolish?

Here the apostle Paul uses terms that...More



Friday, December 16, 2022

Perilous unawareness

God … has appointed a day on which he will judge the world in righteousness.

Prepare to meet your God.

Acts 17:30.31; Amos 4:12.

Perilous unawareness
We are travelling at quite a speed. Ahead of us a car has several cycles on its roof, but they have not been securely fixed. Our children are quite amused. Suddenly one of the cycles breaks free, overturns and crashes on to the road causing sparks to fly. A scream, a quick turn of the steering-wheel, and we pass the scene of the mishap safe and sound. Behind us, unfortunately, we hear screeching brakes, then a crash; there has been a...More



Thursday, December 15, 2022

What kind of freedom?

If the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed.

Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free.

John 8:36; Galatians 5:1.

What kind of freedom?
Many men have risked their lives, and some have lost it, in the search for freedom. Today there is definitely more political liberty than there was a century ago. But is that true liberty? Aren’t we all subject to many influences and thereby enslaved, even captured in many ways without always realising it?

One Man showed what true liberty is: Jesus Christ. In the gospel we discover a perfect Man whose...More



Wednesday, December 14, 2022

Doing the wrong thing at the wrong time and in the wrong place is...

Jonah had gone down into the lowest parts of the ship, had lain down and was fast asleep.
Jonah 1:5.

Doing the wrong thing at the wrong time and in the wrong place is disastrous. But that was precisely Jonah’s situation. God had ordered him to go to Nineveh. But in disobedience to God Jonah went on board a ship bound in the opposite direction. At first everything seemed to go well. Jonah fell asleep in the ship. But his sleep did not last long. The Lord sent a violent storm, and the rougher the waves became, the harshness of the sailors’ tone increased, as they bombarded Jonah with questions. They...More



Tuesday, December 13, 2022

For many years a professor of bionics has been travelling in...

Marvellous are your works, and that my soul knows very well.
Psalm 139:14.

For many years a professor of bionics has been travelling in the desert, searching for mechanisms in nature that will provide examples suitable for technical application. His endurance paid off when the explorer combed the ground on the edge of the Sahara desert one night with a searchlight: he discovered a spider that can form a wheel with its eight legs. It enables the spider not only to roll down the dune passively, but also to accelerate its rolling motion by manipulating its legs.

The professor recognised thereby the...More



Monday, December 12, 2022

Returning home

Know therefore and see that it is an evil and bitter thing that you have forsaken the LORD your God, … says the LORD God of hosts.
Jeremiah 2:19.

Returning home
A stubborn, self-willed son left home, breaking his father’s heart. That mattered little to him: he wanted to lead his own life. This depicts typically those who run away from God, although God has provided for them so well.

Where did he go? “To a far country” (Luke 15:3). He lived riotously, wasted all that he had and ruined his soul. In order to survive he undertook the most degrading work possible. He was hungry, but...More



Sunday, December 11, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (71)

But the Jews did not believe concerning him that he had been blind and received his sight, until they called the parents of him who had received his sight. And they asked them saying, Is this your son, who you say was born blind? How then does he now see? His parents answered them and said, We know that this is our son and that he was born blind; but by what means he now sees we do not know, or who opened his eyes we do not know. He is of age; ask him. He will speak for himself.
John 9:18-21.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (71)
Having heard of the healing of the blind man, the neighbours turned to...More



Saturday, December 10, 2022

Deciding the best way (2)

I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing; therefore choose life, that … you … may live.
Deuteronomy 30:19.

Deciding the best way (2)
Nila had to make the decision whether to choose the broad or the narrow way. He would either simply continue living as before or he would have to accept Christ as His Saviour and Lord. If he decided on the discipleship of Christ, then he had various things to put in order, above all with the lord of the manor whom he had frequently deceived. A struggle raged in his heart.

Nila harnessed his best reindeer and set off. The decision...More



Friday, December 9, 2022

Deciding the best way (1)

Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it.
Matthew 7:13.14.

Deciding the best way (1)
Nila was an inhabitant of Lapland. In his youth he had not taken what is yours and what is mine very seriously. It didn’t really matter whether the reindeer he killed belonged to his own herd or to a neighbour’s. And he really enjoyed cheating travelling salesmen, who too often took advantage of people. Very occasionally...More



Thursday, December 8, 2022

Forgiveness is a wonderful thing...

You are a God ready to pardon, gracious and merciful, slow to anger, abundant in kindness
Nehemiah 9:17.

Forgiveness is a wonderful thing. It means being free of guilt: it gives relief and peace. This is the case in personal relationships between people, when one has become guilty and the other forgives. It is all the more so in our relationship with God.

Forgiveness presumes that the guilty party recognises and confesses his guilt. That is where the problem often begins.

A boy, who had committed an offence, once came to his father and asked, “Papa, will you forgive what I have...More



Wednesday, December 7, 2022

During the forty years that the children of Israel wandered through...

He who gathered much had nothing left over, and he who gathered little had no lack. Every man had gathered according to each one’s needs.
Exodus 16:18.

During the forty years that the children of Israel wandered through the wilderness God provided them with manna, “bread from heaven” (v. 4). Every morning it lay on the ground around the camp. The Israelites simply had to go out and gather it up.

God wanted them to gather it according to their need. Some ate more than others; so they gathered more. But what God provided sufficed for all every day without exception. There was never any lack,...More



Tuesday, December 6, 2022

At our Christian bookstall in the town an elderly gentleman to whom I...

Each of us shall give account of himself to God.
Romans 14:12.

At our Christian bookstall in the town an elderly gentleman to whom I chatted reacted amicably and with interest. I spoke to him about the love of God, who does not want people to be lost on account of their sins. God therefore sent Jesus Christ into the world to die on the cross for sinners, so that they can be saved for the glory of heaven.

The man listened attentively and accepted the calendar that I offered him. A few hours later he suddenly re-appeared and told me enthusiastically that he had given the calendar to his neighbour:...More



Monday, December 5, 2022

Whoever reads the biblical reports of the crucifixion of...

The people stood looking on. But even the rulers with them sneered, saying, He saved others; let him save himself if he is the Christ, the chosen of God.
Luke 23:35.

Whoever reads the biblical reports of the crucifixion of the Lord Jesus must surely conclude that there is no limit to man’s wickedness. The Saviour’s tormentors didn’t even stop insulting Him when He was already hanging on the cross, suffering dreadful pain. They mocked Him by contemptuously demanding that He should save Himself. That would prove to them that He was truly the Christ, the Redeemer promised by God. They stated that “He...More



Sunday, December 4, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (70)

They brought him who formerly was blind to the Pharisees. Now it was a Sabbath when Jesus made the clay and opened his eyes. Then the Pharisees also asked him again how he had received his sight. He said to them, He put clay on my eyes, and I washed, and I see. Therefore some of the Pharisees said, This man is not from God, because he does not keep the Sabbath. Others said, How can a man who is a sinner do such signs? And there was a division among them. They said to the blind man again, What do you say about him because he opened your eyes? He said, He is a prophet.
John 9:13-17.

Thoughts on the Gospel of...More



Saturday, December 3, 2022

What an element water is! We drink it from a...

I will pour water on him who is thirsty and floods on the dry ground.
Isaiah 44:3.

What an element water is! We drink it from a glass, admire it in a lake, need it to cook, and feel it on our skin when we shower. People have fought for it and died through lack of it. Little wonder that the Bible often uses it to illustrate refreshment and blessing!

Today’s verse uses this image to show how God will grant blessing in the future by pouring out water on thirsty souls. Those who benefit by it will “spring up … like willows by the watercourses” (v. 4).

Even today God provides us with...More



Friday, December 2, 2022

The painting, “The Flood” by the French artist Nicolas...

The kings of the earth, the great men, the rich men, the commanders, the mighty men, every slave and every free man hid themselves in the caves and in the rocks of the mountains, and said to the mountains and rocks, Fall on us and hide us from the face of him who sits on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb! For the great day of his wrath has come, and who is able to stand?
Revelation 6:15-17.

The painting, “The Flood” by the French artist Nicolas Poussin (1594-1665) depicts profound hopelessness and despair.

In the centre of the picture a boat capsizes before a waterfall with a man...More



Thursday, December 1, 2022

Bartimæus

Blind Bartimæus, the son of Timæus, sat by the road begging. And when he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to cry out and say, Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!
Mark 10:46.47.

Bartimæus
Blindness had forced Bartimæus to beg, but it also led him to the Lord Jesus Christ. Through his handicap and his poverty he was in great need; so he could not remain silent, when he heard that Jesus, the promised Redeemer, was nearby.

The people around him reacted angrily, but that did not trouble Bartimæus. And Jesus actually heard his cry, stood still and had Bartimæus brought...More



Wednesday, November 30, 2022

We know that God has revealed Himself in Jesus Christ in a...

He chose us in him, … having predestinated us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will.
Ephesians 1:4.5.

We know that God has revealed Himself in Jesus Christ in a twofold relationship: as God and as the Father. Our blessings, too, are to be understood in this relationship: on the one hand in His perfect nature as God, on the other with His affection as our Father.

That God predestinated us to the adoption as sons shows that He has brought us into a wonderful loving relationship with Himself as our Father, which is no less than that which exists...More



Tuesday, November 29, 2022

A painting by Rembrandt

Christ … suffered once for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God.

He was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities, the chastisement for our peace was upon him, and by his stripes we are healed.

1 Peter 3:18; Isaiah 53:5.

A painting by Rembrandt
An art gallery in Munich exhibits a picture by the Dutch master Rembrandt. It shows Jesus being crucified. In this painting a man wearing a blue beret is helping to put up the cross on which Christ was nailed. The explanation of this anachronism: the man with the beret is the painter...More



Monday, November 28, 2022

The Mediator between God and men

There is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself a ransom for all.
1 Timothy 2:5.6.

The Mediator between God and men
When the first human couple listened to Satan’s voice and sinned, a cleft arose immediately between God and His creatures. It seemed to be unbridgeable. Job, that man of faith who was so severely tested, expressed this very thought, “Nor is there any mediator between us, who may lay his hand on us both” (ch. 9:33).

But we must heed the astonishing revelation given to the prophet Isaiah: “He saw that there was no man,...More



Sunday, November 27, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (69)

Therefore the neighbours and those who previously had seen that he was blind, said, Is not this he who sat and begged? Some said, This is he. Others said, He is like him. He said, I am he. Therefore they said to him, How were your eyes opened? He said, A man called Jesus made clay and anointed my eyes and said to me, Go to the pool of Siloam and wash. So I went and washed, and I received sight. Then they said to him, Where is he? He said, I do not know.
John 9:8-12.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (69)
A blind man had been healed by Jesus and could now see. People who knew the blind beggar could...More



Saturday, November 26, 2022

Christianity, a relationship with Jesus

Jesus said to his disciples, If anyone desires to come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.

They are not of the world, just as I am not of the world.

Matthew 16:24; John 17:16.

Christianity, a relationship with Jesus
Has Christianity achieved its aim, or has it failed? Two thousand years have passed since Jesus came to earth and gave His life to save human beings. The world does not seem to have improved. Social injustice, a flood of violence and immorality are the dominant characteristics of the world today. And the countries with a Christian culture are...More



Friday, November 25, 2022

An apparent conversion

The ones on the rock are those who, when they hear, receive the word with joy; and these have no root, who believe for a while and in time of temptation fall away.
Luke 8:13.

An apparent conversion
Yes, there is such a thing, unfortunately! Signs of being affected by religious emotions do not necessarily signify conversion. Someone may, for example, be very distressed, because he must bear the consequences of some sin. He acknowledges his lost state and longs for redemption. He starts to occupy himself with the Christian faith, but time passes and difficulties arise in his life, and everything...More



Thursday, November 24, 2022

Don’t scorn warnings!

He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.

Jesus … delivers us from the wrath to come.

John 3:36; 1 Thessalonians 1:10.

Don’t scorn warnings!
When there is an earthquake, the first shaking is often followed by another, sometimes more violent and dangerous. The pause between the two gives one the possibility to find a safer place so as to save one’s life. History, however, provides enough examples of people who despised the first warning while the moments of respite...More



Wednesday, November 23, 2022

Intimidation

Pilate said to him (Jesus), Are you not speaking to me? Do you not know that I have power to crucify you? Jesus answered, You could have no power at all against me, unless it had been given you from above. Therefore the one who delivered me to you has the greater sin.
John 19:10.11.

Intimidation
Jesus had spent the night without any sleep. He had been subjected to several interrogations. They had mocked Him, scourged Him and put a crown of thorns on His head. The governor Pilate thought he could assert his authority over Him in this condition by saying, “Are you not speaking to me?” His...More



Tuesday, November 22, 2022

The Creator’s signature

The heavens declare the glory of God and the firmament shows his handiwork.

The LORD by wisdom founded the earth; by understanding he established the heavens.

Psalm 19:1; Proverbs 3:19.

The Creator’s signature
An astronaut who returned from space exclaimed: “I did not meet God.” A philosopher said one day, “God is dead.” The scholar Einstein declared more modestly, “Through mathematics I know that God exists, but I cannot find God through mathematics.” By that he meant that one must believe in a God who has revealed Himself to mankind through the harmony of all that...More



Monday, November 21, 2022

Seven years ago yesterday the weekend began quite normally in...

Behold, now is the day of salvation.

Prepare to meet your God.

2 Corinthians 6:2; Amos 4:12.

Seven years ago yesterday the weekend began quite normally in Paris. Restaurant terraces, concert halls, stadiums were full of people seeking enjoyment and relaxation. Then in the course of the evening a series of brutal terror attacks caused the death of 130 people, many of them still young.

Some days later a day of state mourning was held with a service of remembrance in the Dôme des Invalides. For a period of ten minutes there was utter silence while the names of the victims were read out....More



Sunday, November 20, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (68)

I must work the works of him who sent me while it is day; the night is coming when no-one can work. As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world. When he had said these things, he spat on the ground and made clay with the saliva; and he anointed the eyes of the blind man with the clay. And he said to him, Go, wash in the pool of Siloam (which is translated, Sent). So he went and washed, and came back seeing.
John 9:4-7.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (68)
The man born blind gave the Lord the opportunity to carry out the works of God on him. In His love Jesus could not rest, so long as...More



Saturday, November 19, 2022

Regeneration

Jesus answered, Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God.

Having been born again … through the word of God which lives and abides for ever.

John 3:5; 1 Peter 1:23.

Regeneration
During his train journeys through France, Switzerland and Italy the evangelist Dapozzo held a minor inquiry. He asked one hundred people this question: “Are you a born again Christian?” The only people who really understand the question are those who have believed in Jesus Christ. The answers were varied and sometimes revealed indignation:...More



Friday, November 18, 2022

The end of the age (2)

Look at the fig tree and all the trees. When they are already budding, you see and know for yourselves that summer is near. So you also, when you see these things happening, know that the kingdom of God is near. … Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will by no means pass away.
Luke 21:29-33.

The end of the age (2)
Jesus Christ had spoken of the upheaval and the fears that will precede His return to earth. He now adds a parable that shows clearly that we are living today at the end of the age.

The fig tree is a well-known illustration of the people of Israel (Hosea 9:10; Luke...More



Thursday, November 17, 2022

The end of the age (1)

There will be signs in the sun, in the moon, and in the stars, and on the earth distress of nations with perplexity, the sea and the waves roaring; men’s hearts failing them for fear and the expectation of those things which are coming on the earth, for the power of the heavens will be shaken. Then they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. Now when these things begin to happen, look up and lift up your heads, because your redemption draws near.
Luke 21:25-28.

The end of the age (1)
With these prophetic words Jesus Christ draws our attention to the end time, the...More



Wednesday, November 16, 2022

What is left in the basket?

Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly.

Receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your soul. But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.

Colossians 3:16; James 1:21.22.

What is left in the basket?
Some people have an excellent memory. It is said that Cyrus, the king of Persia, remembered the names of all the soldiers in his enormous army. Whatever the capacity of our own memory is, it is mostly selective. We store and ruminate over frustration and deception experienced in daily life but soon forget our own faults and the lessons we...More



Tuesday, November 15, 2022

A group of coal miners were waiting outside the wages office to...

The wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Romans 6:23.

A group of coal miners were waiting outside the wages office to receive their pay packet for the week’s work.

An elderly man stepped up to them and asked them, “Are you waiting for your wages?” They all nodded. “That is only right,” he said, “for you have all done your work and truly earned your pay. But have you heard of another payment of wages that you would rather do without?” No-one answered. The elderly man took out his Bible, opened it and read, “The wages of sin is...More



Monday, November 14, 2022

Thirsting for eternal life (2)

He who believes in the Son has everlasting life.

He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life.

John 3:36; 1 John 5:12.

Thirsting for eternal life (2)
To adolescents life seems very long, but it seems short when one has reached the fifties. On passing seventy, one notices that our days are counted. Is it possible that there is nothing more after this life? Deep down in ourselves we sense the answer must be “No!” and the Bible confirms it (Ecclesiastes 3:11).

Eternal life is granted when we believe in Jesus. It does not start with...More



Sunday, November 13, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (67)

Jesus hid himself and went out of the temple, going through the midst of them, and so passed by. Now as Jesus passed by, he saw a man who was blind from birth. And his disciples asked him, saying, Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind? Jesus answered, Neither this man nor his parents sinned, but that the works of God should be revealed in him.
John 8:59-9:3.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (67)
In chapter 8 of this gospel the emphasis lies on Jesus’ sayings. He told His listeners what He had heard from the Father (v. 26). In chapter 9 the emphasis is on His...More



Saturday, November 12, 2022

Our need of forgiveness (1)

I will forgive their iniquity, and their sin I will remember no more.

They brought to him a paralytic lying on a bed. When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, Son, be of good cheer; your sins are forgiven you.

Jeremiah 31:34; Matthew 9:2.

Our need of forgiveness (1)
Who doesn’t need forgiveness to wipe out the past? Who doesn’t long for a life of peace with God that will continue into the future?

Hidden secrets that obsess us and guilty acts commit­ted with full knowledge, and that make us ashamed, remain anchored in our memory. Who can free us from them?...More



Friday, November 11, 2022

An impressive exhibition on the subject “Egyptian Mummies” in a...

I know your works, that you have a name that you are alive, but you are dead.
Revelation 3:1.

An impressive exhibition on the subject “Egyptian Mummies” in a large town attracted many interested persons. More than 220,000 visitors participated in 2,800 guided tours. Those mummies were not only of historical interest; they can also provide important instruction in matters of faith. A pastor made the following comparison that accurately illustrates today’s verse above.

“The Egyptians knew how to embalm their corpses so effectively that corruption hasn’t taken place to the present day. Such...More



Thursday, November 10, 2022

When we look for something, we are usually concerned to...

Seek the LORD while he may be found, call upon him while he is near.

Seek the LORD … , seek his face ever­more.

Isaiah 55:6; Psalm 105:4.

When we look for something, we are usually concerned to find something lost or hidden – preferably for all time. Seeking can, however, have another meaning, e.g. desiring or striving for something.

In a happy marriage both meanings apply: the husband and wife have sought and found their partner for life. They are happy and need not seek any more. But because they love each other, they constantly seek their company, which strengthens their...More



Wednesday, November 9, 2022

In contrast to other kings of Judah, Jehoshaphat sought to...

Jehoshaphat dwelt at Jerusalem; and he went out again among the people from Beersheba to the mountains of Ephraim, and brought them back to the LORD God of their fathers.
2 Chronicles 19:4.

In contrast to other kings of Judah, Jehoshaphat sought to live and reign according to the will of God. He abolished idolatry from the land and saw to it that the people were taught from God’s law. God approved of Jehoshaphat and his obedience and gave him power and wealth (cf. ch. 17:312; 18:1).

Suddenly, however, Jehoshaphat’s greatness became a snare for him. He had become “increasingly powerful” (ch....More



Tuesday, November 8, 2022

It was a grey November day: the telephone in our office rang...

Having made peace through the blood of his cross.
Colossians 1:20.

It was a grey November day: the telephone in our office rang.

”There has been a serious traffic accident. Several people and vehicles are involved. The cause is unclear.” We were commissioned to survey the scene by the district attorney.

On the way to the place of the accident many thoughts went through my mind. What would we find there? Then we saw it: utter chaos, several badly damaged vehicles, goods from lorries were lying everywhere, police and ambulance crews and – sadly – a hearse: someone had suffered...More



Monday, November 7, 2022

Repentance

Repent therefore and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out.

God … now commands all men everywhere to repent.

Acts 3:19; 17:30.

Repentance
What repentance isn’t:

Repentance is not a sense of fear. Countless people call upon God in situations that are apparently hopeless. But when the difficulty has passed, and they are no longer afraid, they continue living as godlessly as before.

Repentance is not the same as pricks of conscience. Judas, who betrayed Jesus, was so conscious stricken that he was driven to suicide. But that was not...More



Sunday, November 6, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (66)

Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day, and he saw it and was glad. Then the Jews said to him, You are not yet fifty years old, and have you seen Abraham? Jesus said to them, Most assuredly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I AM. Then they took up stones to throw at him; but Jesus hid himself and went out of the temple.
John 8:56-59.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (66)
God had chosen Abraham to produce a countless progeny, God’s “people for himself” (Deuteronomy 7:6). In the eyes of the Jews no-one was greater than that patriarch.

The Lord did not hesitate to respond to their...More



Saturday, November 5, 2022

It was customary for the Romans to inscribe the name of...

Pilate wrote a title and put it upon the cross. And the writing was: JESUS OF NAZARETH, THE KING OF THE JEWS.
John 19:19.

It was customary for the Romans to inscribe the name of convicts on a slate; so the Roman governor Pilate had the inscription, “Jesus of Nazareth, the King of the Jews” fixed to the cross. It corresponded to the accusation brought against Him by the Jewish leaders. Whoever expressed the right to the title of king without permission from Rome was considered a rebel and was punished by death through crucifixion.

How wrong it had been to pronounce the Lord Jesus guilty! He had...More



Friday, November 4, 2022

In the early 1960’s a young Russian girl named Irina was...

There is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself a ransom for all.
1 Timothy 2:5.6.

In the early 1960’s a young Russian girl named Irina was sitting in school bored to death. The lesson was about atheism – once again! “There is no God. Only a few idiots believe in him.”

Irina said to herself, “If that is true, then it should be sufficient to tell us two or three times and then stop. They have to say it again and again with so much hatred. So there must be a God, and He must be strong.”

At first that annoyed her, for, if God...More



Thursday, November 3, 2022

Hunger or thirst never again? (1)

Jesus said to them, I am the bread of life. He who comes to me shall never hunger, and he who believes in me shall never thirst.

Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.

John 6:35; Matthew 4:4.

Hunger or thirst never again? (1)
The multitude thronged around Jesus. The evening before they had wanted to make Him king, because He had given them food by means of a miracle. But then He had withdrawn to the mountain alone, for no man is entitled to bestow any dignity on the Son of God. In addition, their motives were transparent: they merely...More



Wednesday, November 2, 2022

Joseph was a sensitive young man and also his...

Joseph … asked Pharaoh’s officers who were with him in the custody of his lord’s house, saying, Why do you look so sad today?
Genesis 40:6.7.

Joseph was a sensitive young man and also his father Jacob’s favourite son. His brothers had sold him as a slave. We might have expected Joseph to look sad under these circumstances. He had served Potiphar, his Egyptian master, devotedly and diligently. And this, together with his faithfulness to God, was what caused his imprisonment. If he had been sad in prison, one could have understood it. Joseph must undoubtedly have had times of deep, heartfelt trouble;...More



Tuesday, November 1, 2022

What a responsibility the saints have...

I found it necessary to write to you exhorting you to contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints.
Jude 3.

What a responsibility the saints have! They are called upon to uphold the faith in its pristine form at all costs. But who are the saints?

The first day of this month is designated as “All Saints’ Day” in the calendar of certain ecclesiastical systems. On my bookshelves I have various reference works. One of them defines a saint as “a person declared to be holy by the Christian church because of her or his qualities or good works”. Reading my Bible,...More



Monday, October 31, 2022

No mediator

A certain woman had a flow of blood for twelve years. … When she heard about Jesus, she came behind him in the crowd and touched his garment. … Immediately the fountain of her blood was dried up, and she felt in her body that she was healed of the affliction.
Mark 5:25.27.29.

No mediator
“Sir, as you are an evangelist, tell me how to find inner peace.”

“Jesus Christ alone can grant it to you.”

“I have been seeking it for ten years, and I doubt it more and more.”

“Your situation is not normal, for Jesus says, ʻPeace I leave with you, my peace I...More



Sunday, October 30, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (65)

Are you greater than our father Abraham, who is dead? And the prophets are dead. Who do you make yourself out to be? Jesus answered, If I honour myself, my honour is nothing. It is my Father who honours me, of whom you say that He is your God. Yet you have not known Him, but I know Him. And if I say, I do not know Him, I should be a liar like you; but I do know Him and keep His word.
John 8:53-55.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (65)
Jesus had said, “If anyone keeps my word, he shall never taste death.” His enemies regarded that as proof that Jesus had a demon. Their argument was:...More



Saturday, October 29, 2022

How to follow Jesus

Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us.

He who says he abides in him (Jesus) ought himself also to walk as he walked.

Titus 3:5; 1 John 2:6.

How to follow Jesus
Someone stated in astonishment: “Jesus brought a message of hope and peace. I don’t understand why no-one applies it.” More than 2,000 years after His coming to earth people still speak of the sound teaching that Jesus gave us. Certain sayings of His are powerful and attractive: “Love one another, as I have loved you” (John 13:34). “Love your enemies, do good, and...More



Friday, October 28, 2022

A last minute testimony

I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.
Galatians 2:20.

A last minute testimony
A French magazine collected several testimonies of men condemned to death in certain states of the U.S.A. They were remarks made before their execution. Many revealed rebellion, but what Michael W. H. expressed was moving:

“First I should like to express my sincere regret to the family of Amy (his victim). I have caused them a lot of pain,...More



Thursday, October 27, 2022

Can’t one make an occasional mistake?

God...now commands all men everywhere to repent, because he has appointed a day on which he will judge the world in righteousness by the man whom he has ordained.
Acts 17:30.31.

Can’t one make an occasional mistake?
“Good morning! I’m bringing this appliance back that I bought last week. It doesn’t correspond to the requirements I told you about.” A shrug of the shoulders was the only excuse with the comment: “Everyone can make a mistake.” True enough, when it is merely a matter of minor faults. There are, however, choices and circumstances in our life when we cannot afford to err....More



Wednesday, October 26, 2022

Moses lived in Pharaoh’s house for forty years...

By faith Moses … refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter, choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, … esteeming the reproach of Christ greater than the treasures in Egypt.
Hebrews 11:24-26.

Moses lived in Pharaoh’s house for forty years. It was not wasted time; it had its value; but the years of seclusion in Midian were far more profitable.

Moses might well have had an excellent education in Egypt and acquired extensive knowledge, but “the treasures of Egypt” did not qualify him for his future duties. They faded into insignificance by comparison with the...More



Tuesday, October 25, 2022

The rich tend to trust in their wealth and not in...

Jesus … said to them (his disciples), How hard it is for those who have riches to enter the kingdom of God! And the disciples were astonished at his words. But Jesus answered again, … Children, how hard it is for those who trust in riches to enter the kingdom of God! It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.
Mark 10:24.25.

The rich tend to trust in their wealth and not in God. That is the great danger of riches and prosperity.

A Christian once had a conversation with an extremely wealthy lady. He sensed her interest in biblical...More



Monday, October 24, 2022

The law that God gave his people Israel in the wilderness was...

The law was given through Moses, but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.
John 1:17.

The law that God gave his people Israel in the wilderness was “holy and just and good” (Romans 7:12). It shows us, especially in the ten commandments, God’s righteous claims on mankind and the way our life is led. Apart from Jesus Christ, however, no-one has succeeded in fulfilling God’s holy demands. The law shows us our shortcomings. It exposes our sins, but does not give us the strength to change our lives and do good. The law gives the diagnosis, but has no medicine for it; it merely states the judgment:...More



Sunday, October 23, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (64)

I do not seek my own glory; there is one who seeks and judges. Most assuredly, I say to you, If anyone keeps my word, he shall never see death. Then the Jews said to him, Now we know that you have a demon. Abraham is dead, and the prophets; and you say, If anyone keeps my word, he shall never taste death.
John 8:50-52.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (64)
We can only wonder at the perfect Man, Jesus Christ, who is eternal God at the same time. How calmly He reacts to the worst insult cast at Him: ascribing a demon to Him. What He once said: “I am meek and lowly of heart” (Matthew 11:29) now...More



Saturday, October 22, 2022

God’s righteousness is our subject today...

When King David came to Bahurim, … a man … whose name was Shimei, the son of Gera, … came out, cursing continuously as he came. And he threw stones at David and at all the servants of King David.
2 Samuel 16:5.6.

God’s righteousness is our subject today. With the world full of injustice nowadays, most people no longer believe in such a thing, since God does not react. The Bible explains: not yet! An instance in the life of David, the king of ancient Israel, makes this clear.

Simei was an Israelite from the tribe of Benjamin. He had insulted the king grievously and rebelled against his...More



Friday, October 21, 2022

It was no easy position being the wife of Pilate...

While he (Pilate) was sitting on the judgment seat, his wife sent to him, saying, Have nothing to do with that just man, for I have suffered many things in a dream because of him.
Matthew 27:19.

It was no easy position being the wife of Pilate, who was governor over the Roman province of Judea. Her homeland and relatives were far away in Italy. Her husband had been entrusted with the difficult mission of keeping the stubborn Jews in check. One night the woman had a dream that troubled her so much that she decided to warn her husband during Christ’s trial: “Have nothing to do with that righteous...More



Thursday, October 20, 2022

God is love. That sounds good, but is it true?

God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son that whoever believes in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
John 3:16.

God is love. That sounds good, but is it true? There is so much trouble and suffering in the world, so much injustice. Isn’t one compelled to ask where God’s love is to be seen?

So long as everything has gone smoothly in our life, we have believed that God is love. Then a storm arose that shattered everything. And then we began to wonder about the love of God, or not?

Nevertheless God truly is love. To believe it, one must have a convincing...More



Wednesday, October 19, 2022

In the Old Testament we find numerous types that...

He (Aaron) shall take some of the blood of the bull and sprinkle it with his finger on the mercy seat on the east side; and before the mercy seat he shall sprinkle some of the blood with his finger seven times.
Leviticus 16:14.

In the Old Testament we find numerous types that speak of the Lord Jesus and His work of redemption. Among them the “Great Day of Atonement” in Leviticus 16 is of particular significance.

However, the perfection of the Lord Jesus is far superior to the types. He did not need to bring an offering for any sins of His own and then for the people (cf. Hebrews 7:27). Aaron,...More



Tuesday, October 18, 2022

The conversation on the train dealt first with...

With the heart one believes unto righteousness.
Romans 10:10.

The conversation on the train dealt first with general world affairs but then turned to Christian subjects. The elderly lady liked to talk about them. She had been a church-goer since her childhood and had had a sound Christian upbringing that had marked her character to old age.

There had indeed been strokes of fate in her life, yet she still believed in God, in his Son Jesus Christ, in heaven and hell, and in the last judgment. That did not satisfy her opposite number, however. Why not? Were there flaws in her faith? Was it merely...More



Monday, October 17, 2022

A woman came to a well in Sychar to draw...

The woman said to him (Jesus), Sir, you have nothing to draw with, and the well is deep. Where then do you get that living water?
John 4:11.

A woman came to a well in Sychar to draw water. She did so regularly. The water was soon used up, and she had to repeat the process, go to the well, pull the vessel up and carry her heavy jug back into the city. It would soon be empty again.

It is no different for most people in search of fortune or joy. They do everything possible to get it, but next day it is gone. Permanent joy does not come from one’s own efforts.

Today a weary traveller is...More



Sunday, October 16, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (63)

Which of you convicts me of sin? And if I tell the truth, why do you not believe me? He who is of God hears God’s words; therefore you do not hear, because you are not of God. Then the Jews answered and said to him, Do we not say rightly that you are a Samaritan and have a demon? Jesus answered, I do not have a demon; but I honour my Father, and you dishonour me.
John 8:46-49.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (63)
Here Jesus really comes to the point! His enemies need to prove Him guilty of any one sin. Was there anyone who had ever observed any lapse on His part? What a statement is expressed in...More



Saturday, October 15, 2022

Even the Lord Jesus was surprised at the words and the...

The centurion answered and said, Lord, I am not worthy that you should come under my roof. But only speak a word, and my servant will be healed.
Matthew 8:8.

Even the Lord Jesus was surprised at the words and the faith of that Roman centurion. Let us examine the details more closely. The officer had asked the Lord to heal his servant. It is remarkable enough that the centurion sympathised with his suffering servant. But he was firmly convinced that Jesus Christ could heal, and even at a distance!

Such a thing was unheard of even among believing Jews. Hardly any of them would have expected it of...More



Friday, October 14, 2022

No opinion?

Who do you say that I am? Simon Peter answered and said, You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.

We know that this is indeed the Christ, the Saviour of the world.

Matthew 16:15.16; John 4:42.

No opinion?
While in exile at Saint-Hélène Napoleon received from France a Bible embellished with the imperial arms. In his idleness and boredom he started to read it, and his interest was captured by the Person and work of Jesus Christ. The comparison of Jesus Christ’s life with his own career made a profound impression on him.

Out walking one day, he suddenly stopped and...More



Thursday, October 13, 2022

He had become rich through extortion...

Jesus … looked up and saw him, and said to him, Zacchaeus, make haste and come down, for today I must stay at your house.
Luke 19:5.

He had become rich through extortion, was despised by his compatriots, small in stature, but fit enough to climb a tree. The chief tax collector Zacchaeus had discovered a way to see Jesus of Nazareth.

The One he wanted to see was the Saviour, Jesus Christ, who had been born to die, but had escaped the murderous intention of a cruel king, grown up inconspicuously in Nazareth, and shown obedience to his parents. At the start of His ministry He had been “anointed...More



Wednesday, October 12, 2022

“I am ready” – just three words...

He (Peter) said to him, Lord, I am ready to go with you, both to prison and to death.
Luke 22:33.

“I am ready” – just three words, yet they are the key to understanding why Peter stumbled on the pathway of faith.

The Lord had just warned him, “Indeed, Satan has asked for you, that he may sift you as wheat.” How did Peter respond? “I am ready.” His intention was honest enough, for he loved the Lord. But he was not yet aware of what his old nature was capable of. He had not yet learned “that in me (that is, in my flesh) nothing good dwells” (Romans 7:18).

If I am proud of...More



Tuesday, October 11, 2022

Seeking and finding

With you is the fountain of life; in your light we see light.
Psalm 36:9.

Seeking and finding
We are shopping in one of the branches of a gigantic chain of furnishing businesses. Between magazine racks, chests of drawers and other more or less useful containers that help to keep order in a house an advertising slogan catches my eye: “Life is easier if you find what you are looking for!”

It was clear that the writer simply wanted to further business. It was also clear that the seeking and finding here referred exclusively to objects that we might have mislaid, material things that we...More



Monday, October 10, 2022

Christians who proclaim the message of the love of...

Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God. … Then the LORD God called to Adam and said to him, Where are you?
Genesis 3:8.9.

Christians who proclaim the message of the love of God and offer people a Bible repeatedly notice a strange reaction: some recoil determinedly; they are extremely reluctant to accept the book.

What is the cause? Many refuse to have anything to do with religious matters. Or the Bible reminds some of churches with solemn organ music or a man in a cassock, things that they have abandoned long ago.

It is also possible that some have been put...More



Sunday, October 9, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (62)

Why do you not understand my speech? Because you are not able to listen to my word. You are of your father the devil, and the desires of your father you want to do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it. But because I tell you the truth, you do not believe me.
John 8:43-45.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (62)
Is your experience similar to that of Jesus’ listeners? You read the Bible, the Word of God, without understanding what it is...More



Saturday, October 8, 2022

A prisoner, but happier than a king!

Agrippa said to Paul, You almost persuade me to become a Christian. And Paul said, I would to God that not only you, but also all who hear me today, might become both almost and altogether such as I am, except for these chains.
Acts 26:28.29.

A prisoner, but happier than a king!
The apostle Paul could hardly be envied. Although he loved his nation dearly, the multitude in Jerusalem almost killed him. He had been freed by the Roman occupational forces and was then taken from one court of justice to another and finally remained a prisoner.

Now the apostle had been brought before King...More



Friday, October 7, 2022

A normal Nigerian policeman (2)

What will it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul?
Mark 8:36.

A normal Nigerian policeman (2)
While on holiday I turned the radio on one morning. A sermon was being preached. From the thousands of Bible verses, the speaker had chosen the very verse Mark 8:36! Annoyed, I switched off. But I couldn’t get the verse out of my head. Finally, I spent many days on that holiday reading the Bible.

A friend noticed my newly found interest and advised me to read John’s gospel and then the epistle to the Romans. I did so. It seemed to me that the Bible had been...More



Thursday, October 6, 2022

A normal Nigerian policeman (1)

What will it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul?
Mark 8:36.

A normal Nigerian policeman (1)
In 1978 I entered the Nigerian police service. Like every policeman in Nigeria, as a custodian of the law I enjoyed a certain amount of power and some privileges over my compatriots. We all understood this to be part of our profession.

In April 1983 there was a fatal road accident between the capital Lagos and Ibadan. Two people were killed, and three others severely injured. Together with a colleague I had to clarify the details of the accident. I ordered him to...More



Wednesday, October 5, 2022

Knowing, valuing and realising

That good thing that was committed to you, keep by the Holy Spirit who dwells in us.
2 Timothy 1:14.

Knowing, valuing and realising
In today’s verse the apostle Paul speaks of a certain possession entrusted to Timothy. What is meant by it? It is the glorious truth set down by God in the Bible for mankind, especially the facts of the Christian faith. We know Him as our God and Father, who has revealed Himself in His Son. We also know the mystery of Christ and His Church. These invaluable treasures of our faith must be firmly held for their preservation. How is that possible?

The...More



Tuesday, October 4, 2022

When a missionary once asked a dying woman whether she wasn’t...

Having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. … Much more then, having now been justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him.
Romans 5:1.9.

When a missionary once asked a dying woman whether she wasn’t afraid of appearing before God, her reply was, “No, for I am justified.” – “What do you mean by that?” – Astonished, she answered, “You know very well. When I stand before God, Jesus is there. I shall be behind Him, so that God will see only Christ and not me. And if God asks me anything, I shall keep silent, for Christ will answer...More



Monday, October 3, 2022

Some people form an over-hasty judgment on the...

I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes.
Romans 1:16.

Some people form an over-hasty judgment on the gospel, God’s message to mankind: “It is ineffective. There are still murderers and deceivers!”

Well, imagine a firm that produces lawn-mowers. The firm grows, and the managing director holds talks with customers and suppliers. The site of the firm is well looked after, but directly next to it is a large neglected area overgrown with weeds, a real eyesore, but an eye-catcher for all who visit the firm. Some visitors remark...More



Sunday, October 2, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (61).

Now you seek to kill me, a man who has told you the truth which I heard from God. Abraham did not do this. You do the deeds of your father. Then they said to him, We were not born of fornication; we have one father – God. Jesus said to them, If God were your father, you would love me, for I proceeded forth and came from God; nor have I come of myself, but he sent me.
John 8:40-42.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (61)
If any nation on earth had least to do with immorality, then it was the Israelites. If any people claim to have God as their Father, they would be the first. But when Jesus came to...More



Saturday, October 1, 2022

Today’s verse from the Bible does not say that God has...

A man’s heart plans his way, but the LORD directs his steps.
Proverbs 16:9.

Today’s verse from the Bible does not say that God has planned and determined every detail of a person’s life beforehand. If that were so, God would be responsible for all the evil that a person does. However, God does not surrender His authority: He sets limits to people’s actions and has the prerogative to direct their thoughts and steps in individual cases, so that His own beneficial plans come to pass. A good example of this is in connection with the birth of Jesus Christ.

At the time Augustus ruled over the...More



Friday, September 30, 2022

Your money or your life!

What profit is it to a man, if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?

Their silver and their gold will not be able to deliver them in the day of the wrath of the LORD.

Matthew 16:26; Ezekiel 7:19.

Your money or your life!
Someone once wrote that everyone given the choice of emptying their money-box or being killed preferred abandoning their wealth and saving their life. Everybody’s most precious treasure is definitely his life. But there is the life of the body and also that of the soul, and God draws our attention to a...More



Thursday, September 29, 2022

The Deity of Jesus Christ (3)

All things were created through him and for him. And he is before all things, and in him all things consist.
Colossians 1:16.17.

The Deity of Jesus Christ (3)
Jesus is called God by the apostles. In Romans 9:5 Paul declares that He is “over all, the eternally blessed God,” and in Titus 2:13: “our great God and Saviour Jesus Christ”. Warning us to guard against idols, the apostle John proclaims by contrast: “This is the true God and eternal life” (1 John 5:20).

Jesus will eventually reign over all as God. Already in Psalm 8 the greatness of creation is contrasted with the...More



Wednesday, September 28, 2022

Are we sincerely pleased to hear that God has...

Rejoice with those who rejoice.
Romans 12:15.

Are we sincerely pleased to hear that God has blessed others? For Christians this should be a matter of course, for God has joined believers in their fellowship together as members of one body. This makes it normal for a Christian to rejoice in all the good that God grants others: “If one member is honoured, all the members rejoice with it” (1 Corinthians 12:26).
We find a fine example of commonly shared joy in the epistle to the Philippians, the epistle of joy. The apostle Paul was prepared to sacrifice himself in his service for the Lord and the...More



Tuesday, September 27, 2022

The wrath of God

He who believes in the Son has everlasting life: and he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.

For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men.

John 3:36; Romans 1:18.

The wrath of God
In the early years of the twentieth century a church in Croydon, then a town just south of London, had a godly minister who had the salvation of his parishioners at heart. One Sunday evening two frivolous young men entered the church and sat through the evening service. The preacher’s sermon was on the subject...More



Monday, September 26, 2022

The Deity of Jesus Christ (2)

God...has spoken to us by his Son, … the brightness of his glory and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power.
Hebrews 1:1-3.

The Deity of Jesus Christ (2)
Many texts from the Bible testify of the deity of Jesus Christ. Jesus Himself affirmed His deity and received worship as God.

Jesus was called God by the Father Himself. We are profoundly touched by the prophetic word in Psalm 102:24, where Jesus Christ declares, “I said, O my God, do not take me away in the midst of my days.” The Father replies, “Your years are throughout all...More



Sunday, September 25, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (60)

I know that you are Abraham’s descendants, but you seek to kill me, because my word has no place in you. I speak what I have seen with my Father, and you do what you have seen with your father. They answered and said to him, Abraham is our father. Jesus said to them, If you were Abraham’s children, you would do the works of Abraham.
John 8:37-39.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (60)
How proud the religious Jews in those days were of being the descendants of Abraham! But however advantageous natural descent may be for respect and prosperity in this world, it offers little security for the...More



Saturday, September 24, 2022

The love of Christ

That Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend … what is the width and length and depth and height – to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge.
Ephesians 3:17-19.

The love of Christ
However vast man’s knowledge may be, one thing surpasses all else. The Bible tells us what it is: knowing the love of Christ. It is not theoretical, abstract knowledge: it depends on the place that Jesus has in our thoughts and affections. And it has visible consequences in our life.

Christ’s love differs from human...More



Thursday, September 22, 2022

The Deity of Jesus Christ (1)

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. … And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld his glory.
John 1:1.14.

The Deity of Jesus Christ (1)
If there is one truth that has been under attack from the beginning of Christianity right up to our own day, it is the deity of Jesus Christ. People have been content to describe Him as a good man or a reputable prophet, but in either case no more than a man, whereas the Bible affirms His divine origin in connection with His humanity. While distinct in Person, His nature is identical to that of God the...More



Wednesday, September 21, 2022

A God who grants blessing

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ.
Ephesians 1:3.

A God who grants blessing
In the epistle to the Ephesians God gives us a glimpse of His own heart. We learn that all things flow from Him. He is the source and giver of all blessings. In these early verses there is no mention of sinners or sin. The subject is God’s eternal plan of blessing, which, irrespective of the fact that man became a sinner, motivated His heart to grant people in Christ infinitely rich blessings (vv. 4-5). That those whom...More



Tuesday, September 20, 2022

Sitting opposite me was a...

By this we know love, because he laid down his life for us.
1 John 3:16.

Sitting opposite me was a 20-year-old man. We were engaged in a conversation about faith in God. So I offered him a Christian booklet. He refused it, annoyed. He would have nothing to do with such a God.

Cautiously, I tried to discover what he meant by that. “If God takes away a mother of four children, can He be a God of love? I was nine when my mother died.” – “When my mother died, I was also nine,” I replied. He immediately turned round and looked hard at me. “It was a long time ago,” I continued, “but I do...More



Monday, September 19, 2022

The Bible speaks of you and me

Man dies and is laid away; indeed he breathes his last and where is he?

How can a man be righteous before God?

I know that my redeemer lives.

Job 14:10; 9:2; 19:25.

The Bible speaks of you and me
There are questions that haunt me day and night, e.g. what is the sense of my life? Where did I come from, and where am I going? Why all the suffering and evil? Could the experience of Job give us an answer?

This Biblical character led an irreproachable religious life, and one day he saw his life rocked by an incomprehensible series of misfortunes. He began to ask...More



Sunday, September 18, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (59)

They answered him, We are Abraham’s descendants, and have never been in bondage to anyone. How can you say, You will be made free? Jesus answered them, Most assuredly, I say to you, whoever commits sin is a slave of sin. And a slave does not abide in the house for ever, but a son abides for ever. Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed.
John 8:33-36.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (59)
Jesus had told His Jewish listeners, “The truth will make you free”. These were by no means flattering words; they presumed that those addressed were bondservants and enslaved. They were...More



Saturday, September 17, 2022

Jesus, tempted by the devil (3)

Then he (Satan) brought him (Jesus) to Jerusalem, set him on the pinnacle of the temple and said to him, If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down from here, for it is written, He shall give his angels charge over you to keep you, and, In their hands they shall bear you up, lest you dash your foot against a stone. And Jesus answered and said to him, It has been said, You shall not tempt the LORD your God. Now when the devil had ended every temptation, he departed from him until an opportune time.
Luke 4:9-13.

Jesus, tempted by the devil (3)
The third temptation was of a religious character....More



Friday, September 16, 2022

Jesus, tempted by the devil (2)

Then the devil, taking him up on a high mountain, showed him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time. And the devil said to him, All this authority I will give you, and their glory; for this has been delivered to me, and I give it to whomever I wish. Therefore, if you will worship before me, all will be yours. And Jesus answered and said to him, Get behind me, Satan! For it is written, You shall worship the LORD your God, and him only you shall serve.
Luke 4:5-8.

Jesus, tempted by the devil (2)
In the first temptation Satan attempted to find a starting-point in Jesus’ physical needs to...More



Thursday, September 15, 2022

Jesus, tempted by the devil (1)

Jesus, being filled with the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness, being tempted for forty days by the devil. And in those days he ate nothing, and afterward, when they had ended, he was hungry. And the devil said to him, If you are the Son of God, command this stone to become bread. But Jesus answered … , Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God.
Luke 4:1-4.

Jesus, tempted by the devil (1)
When Adam, the first man, was tempted by Satan in the Garden of Eden, he lived in the most favourable circumstances, yet he succumbed to...More



Wednesday, September 14, 2022

People pass on, God remains

He (Elisha) took the mantle of Elijah that had fallen from him, and struck the water, and said, Where is the LORD God of Elijah? And when he also had struck the water, it was divided this way and that; and Elisha crossed over.
2 Kings 2:14.

People pass on, God remains
Elisha had been called to be the prophet Elijah’s successor. After they had crossed the Jordan together, a chariot of fire drawn by horse of fire suddenly appeared and separated them. Elijah was taken up to heaven in a whirlwind. The prophet had left this earth.

We can have a similar experience, if not so spectacular as...More



Tuesday, September 13, 2022

Pipa lived in Guyana, a country in the north-east of...

The blood of Jesus Christ … cleanses us from all sin.

He himself is the propitiation for our sins.

1 John 1:7; 1 John 2:2.

Pipa lived in Guyana, a country in the north-east of South America. He was a sorcerer and a staunch enemy of the gospel. One day, however, his conscience was awakened, and he said to the missionary who lived and worked there, “You are right. I am a very godless man. Yet you don’t even know about the hidden sins in my heart.”

Pipa pointed dejectedly to his heart and added. “It’s all lying there like the weight of a mountain.”

The missionary...More



Monday, September 12, 2022

Many people say their prayers at pre-determined times of...

Through him (Jesus Christ) we … have access by one Spirit to the Father.

In Christ Jesus our Lord … we have boldness and access with confidence through faith in him.

Ephesians 2:18; 3:11.12.

Many people say their prayers at pre-determined times of the day. Some believe that prayers should be said in consecrated places. Since God has no visible house on earth in which He dwells, such questions are of secondary significance.

Praying means speaking with God. We speak as though with a friend who is interested in me and well disposed towards me. Born again Christians have such a personal...More



Sunday, September 11, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (58)

And he who sent me is with me. The Father has not left me alone, for I always do those things that please him. As he spoke these words, many believed in him. Then Jesus said to those Jews who believed him, If you abide in my word, you are my disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.
John 8:29-32.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (58)
Reading John’s gospel, we are struck by the number of times that the Son of God mentions that the Father had sent Him. Jesus thus had a mission to fulfil that He on one occasion also called His “work” (ch. 17:4). Whatever...More



Saturday, September 10, 2022

The prisoners-of-war, who built the bridge over the River Kwai, suffered...

Jesus answered, … “For this cause I have come into the world, that I should bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth hears my voice.
John 18:37.

The prisoners-of-war, who built the bridge over the River Kwai, suffered not only from the hostility of the conquerors, but also from the local population. A single exception were the villagers who welcomed them with friendliness and encouragement. As Christians they endeavoured to radiate something of Christ and of God’s goodness and love to mankind.

This experience made Ernest Gordon and his colleagues consider whether Christianity...More



Friday, September 9, 2022

They came to know Jesus Christ (1)

Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.
Matthew 5:16.

They came to know Jesus Christ (1)
In 1942 the British officer, Ernest Gordon (1916-2002), was taken prisoner in Japan. With many other prisoners-of-war he was engaged on the construction of a railway line between Thailand and Burma by the River Kwai. The inhuman living conditions led to despair and even to distrust and envy among themselves. Additionally there was the rejection by the natives, whose villages they passed through on the way to work.

There was, however,...More



Thursday, September 8, 2022

There was a video presentation in a museum that...

Destruction and misery are in their ways; and the way of peace they have not known.
Romans 3:16.17.

There was a video presentation in a museum that shocked me. Violent acts by human beings were denounced. Dreadful scenes succeeded one another. I shall refrain from giving details. The impressions are still imprinted on my memory.

The history of the human race is one of warfare, terror and devastation, of blood and tears. After the experiences of our times no-one will dispute that.

What is the solution? Peace agreements have often failed. Dictators have possibly been able to establish...More



Wednesday, September 7, 2022

How honourable it is for someone when God can give such a fine...

Amaziah was twenty-five years old when he became king, and he reigned twenty-nine years in Jerusalem...And he did what was right in the sight of the LORD; but not with a loyal heart.
2 Chronicles 25:1.2.

How honourable it is for someone when God can give such a fine testimony: “He did what was right”. This is not said of many kings of Israel or Judah. Unfortunately, however, Amaziah’s testimony does not end there. The final part has a sad ring about it: Amaziah had not taken a determined, uncompromising stand on God’s side.

Later we learn that Amaziah served the gods of the Edomites. Did...More



Tuesday, September 6, 2022

A phenomenal hurricane

The LORD answered Job out of the whirlwind, … Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth? … Have you entered the springs of the sea, or have you walked in search of the depths?
Job 38:1.4.16.

A phenomenal hurricane
On the 6th September 2017 the islands of St. Barthélemy and St. Martin were struck with full force by Irma, the most powerful tropical cyclone ever recorded in the Atlantic with winds reaching 180 m.p.h., torrential rain and devastating waves. The hurricane left considerable material damage and a population in a state of shock. A responsible politician stated, “This...More



Monday, September 5, 2022

2,000 years ago the greatest wonder occurred that this earth has...

We implore you on Christ’s behalf, be reconciled to God. For he made him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in him.
2 Corinthians 5:20.21.

2,000 years ago the greatest wonder occurred that this earth has ever seen. A human being lived on earth who never sinned. In all things he did what was right according to God’s judgment. It did not start at the age of 20 or 40. From earliest childhood He did only what pleased God.

You have already guessed: it can only have been Jesus Christ, the Son of God. He was the only One whose life corresponded perfectly to...More



Sunday, September 4, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (57)

I have many things to say and to judge concerning you, but he who sent me is true; and I speak to the world those things that I heard from him. They did not understand that he spoke to them of the Father. Then Jesus said to them, When you lift up the Son of man, then you will know that I am he, and that I do nothing of myself; but as the Father taught me, I speak these things.
John 8:26-28.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (57)
We have seen that Jesus’ words reveal who He really was. Human beings often use words to conceal the truth about themselves.

Here we learn that Jesus’ words...More



Saturday, September 3, 2022

“It’s not so important whether you get better or...

Whenever I am afraid, I will trust in you. In God (I will praise his word), in God I have put my trust; I will not fear.
Psalm 56:3.4.

“It’s not so important whether you get better or not. What is decisive is that you put your life in God’s hand and trust Him; what He does is good and right.” These words had just been spoken to Mr Tian by his cousin.

They spoke together for a long time. The fear that had plagued the Chinese man on his sickbed gave way to Christ and His light. There was much that Mr Tian still did not understand, but He surrendered his life to Jesus and took the first step...More



Friday, September 2, 2022

Many years ago the following happened in...

Trust in him at all times, you people; pour your heart out before him; God is a refuge for us.
Psalm 62:8.

Many years ago the following happened in Chung King, China: Mr Tian was the proprietor of a fashionable café that was full of patrons from morning to evening and was a profitable concern. One day, however, a doctor diagnosed tuberculosis in that successful businessman.

Tuberculosis – the word shocked Mr Tian like a death sentence. Fear held his soul in its claws. For him night had fallen.

He was admitted to hospital. The doctor stressed the need for absolute rest. If only his...More



Thursday, September 1, 2022

These are the words of a desperate man, someone who can no longer endure...

The bitter of soul, who long for death, but it does not come, and search for it more than hidden treasures, … rejoice exceedingly and are glad when they can find the grave.
Job 3:20-22.

These are the words of a desperate man, someone who can no longer endure life. He regards the grave as a place of rest, where problems are abolished, and longs for it. When troubles are excessive, such thoughts can arise. All earthly cares indeed end with death. Does that make it a good way out?

All is by no means over with death. The Bible and our conscience, too, tell us so. Everyone will one day rise from the...More



Wednesday, August 31, 2022

Two details in today’s verse from the Bible deserve our...

Submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.
James 4:7.

Two details in today’s verse from the Bible deserve our particular attention.

In the first place, we are assured that the devil will flee from us, if we resist him. This means that we, as believers, are not spared the enemy’s temptations. We are saved and freed from his power; so, as the Lord’s own people, we shall certainly reach our heavenly goal. Nevertheless the enemy will use his cunning to make us stumble with the consequence that the Lord will be dishonoured and our peace of heart will be troubled.

If we...More



Tuesday, August 30, 2022

Are you a Christian?

If you abide in my word, you are my disciples indeed.

The disciples were … called Christians.

John 8:31; Acts 11:26.

Are you a Christian?
There is a form of Christendom that is very fashionable; it speaks only of love of one’s neighbour and of the poor, of mutual aid and of solidarity. Now true Christianity that has resulted from the teaching of Christ is much more than that. It certainly insists on the value of love and generosity, but only because they are motivated by the love that is in God Himself and which surpasses human thought.

The Bible tells us that God created...More



Monday, August 29, 2022

Are the Bible and Christian faith opposed to man’s...

Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding.
Proverbs 3:5.

Are the Bible and Christian faith opposed to man’s intelligence? Not at all!

Mankind is God’s masterpiece. He was created in the image of God and was to subject the earth to himself (cf. Genesis 1:27.28). For this purpose God gave him intelligence, talent and strength. With these qualities he has achieved great, even sensational things. With his telescope he has discovered new galaxies, and distinguished the smallest atoms with his microscope. He thinks and researches, combines and programmes – and...More



Sunday, August 28, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (56)

He said to them, You are from beneath; I am from above. You are of this world; I am not of this world. Therefore I said to you that you will die in your sins; for if you do not believe that I am he, you will die in your sins. Then they said to him, Who are you? And Jesus said to them, Just what I have been saying to you from the beginning.
John 8:23-25.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (56)
The Lord made a marked contrast: on the one hand He was “the light of the world”, on the other, they rejected the light. Seen morally, they were “from beneath” under Satan’s power. Jesus was from...More



Saturday, August 27, 2022

In the midday heat at the height of summer I was...

By grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.
Ephesians 2:8.9.

In the midday heat at the height of summer I was cycling past the parched lawns of the almost empty park. The large pond was still in the brilliant sunshine.

Suddenly I stopped, startled. A turtle lay under a tree far from its natural element of water. How did it get there? In its desperate situation it was trying to get away from there to the safety of the water, but in vain! The weight of its shell was too great, and its legs too weak. All around...More



Friday, August 26, 2022

3:38 a.m. should find most of us fast asleep.

Pharaoh, king of Egypt, is but a noise. He has passed by the appointed time!
Jeremiah 46:17.

3:38 a.m. should find most of us fast asleep.
3:38 a.m. on the 26th August 2016. The church clock on the tower in Amatrice in Italy stopped, marking the inconceivable: the earthquake that shook Central Italy, surprising 231 people in their sleep and leaving them dead.

3:38 a.m.. The earthquake destroyed practically the entire village. The church tower alone remained standing as a warning sign, continuously showing 3:38 – until the end of October, when another earthquake caused the tower to...More



Thursday, August 25, 2022

Invitation to a wedding (6)

He (the king) said to him, Friend, how did you come in here without a wedding garment? And he was speechless. Then the king said to the servants, Bind him hand and foot, take him away, and cast him into outer darkness; there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
Matthew 22:12-14.

Invitation to a wedding (6)
All were dressed according to the royal provision, except one who stood there, wearing his own clothes. The king spoke to him, but he failed to respond. He was cast “into outer darkness”. The wedding reception finally takes place endlessly. That man had been so close, but was now a...More



Wednesday, August 24, 2022

The Apostle Paul’s friendly tone is particularly conspicuous in his...

I do not write these things to shame you, but as my beloved children I warn you.
1 Corinthians 4:14.

The Apostle Paul’s friendly tone is particularly conspicuous in his epistles to the Corinthians, for it was in the church there that much needed to be corrected. We read of divisions, quarrels, envy, fornication, and even of court cases. Some even doubted Paul’s calling as an apostle.

How would we have reacted to such behaviour? Possibly with an ultimatum? But the apostle chose another better way, a more spiritual one. He stated their problems explicitly, holding nothing back. Nevertheless the...More



Tuesday, August 23, 2022

God commands all to be converted. By that is meant a...

You turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God, and to wait for his Son from heaven.
1 Thessalonians 1:9.10.

God commands all to be converted. By that is meant a radical change of direction. Previously one distanced oneself from God; on conversion one turns towards Him.

Many people think, “I do believe in God, but why should I be converted?” This question is by no means new. At the time of the prophet Malachi, some 2,450 years ago people had this problem: “Return to me, and I will return to you, says the LORD of hosts. But you said, ʻIn what way shall we return?ʼ Will a man...More



Monday, August 22, 2022

Invitation to a wedding (5)

When the king came in to see the guests, he saw a man there who did not have on a wedding garment.
Matthew 22:11.

Invitation to a wedding (5)
The perspective in the parable now changes. We have entered the hall where the reception will be held. The guests are present, and the king appears. Scrutinising the guests, he notices a man incorrectly dressed. It was the custom in the east at that time for the bridegroom to provide suitable attire for the guests at the wedding. So long as they wore it, no-one need feel embarrassed or out-of-place.

One person was present who did not think it...More



Sunday, August 21, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (55)

Then Jesus said to them again, I am going away, and you will seek me, and will die in your sin. Where I go you cannot come. So the Jews said; Will he kill himself, because he says, Where I go you cannot come?
John 8:21.22.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (55)
The Son of God came into this world as its light to bring people out of darkness (cf. ch. 12:46). But they preferred darkness to light. Then the Lord Jesus told the leaders of the Jews that He was about to go away, but they would seek Him in vain. They wanted a political Messiah who would satisfy their worldly ambitions and lusts, one...More



Saturday, August 20, 2022

Eat, drink and be merry! This is everyone’s...

Soul, you have many goods laid up for many years; take your ease: eat, drink, and be merry!

Bring the fatted calf here, and kill it; and let us eat and be merry.

Luke 12:19; 15:23.

Eat, drink and be merry! This is everyone’s wish. And God would dearly grant it to us. Both of today’s verses express it, but in an entirely different context.

In the first instance a farmer was expecting a good harvest, but he had insufficient storage capacity for the grain. He therefore decided to demolish his barns and build bigger ones. After the harvest he would say, “Soul, you have many goods laid...More



Friday, August 19, 2022

Before the young man found faith in Jesus Christ, he had...

Jesus said to them, Have you never read the scriptures: “This was the Lord’s doing”?
Matthew 21:42.

Before the young man found faith in Jesus Christ, he had never read the Bible or attended a church service. But God found him, and he started reading the Bible just at the time when he badly needed it.

The Bible course that he had started dealt with Matthew’s gospel. But it proceeded so slowly that he read on well ahead. He had soon finished the four gospels in his pocket New Testament. Then someone drew his attention to the Old Testament. His reaction was: “What’s the good of that? How...More



Thursday, August 18, 2022

Invitation to a wedding (4)

Then he (the king) said to his servants, The wedding is ready, but those who were invited were not worthy. Therefore go into the highways, and as many as you find, invite to the wedding. So those servants went out into the highways and gathered together all whom they found, both bad and good. And the wedding hall was filled with guests.
Matthew 22:8-10.

Invitation to a wedding (4)
The king has still not cancelled the wedding. He wanted to celebrate it, but with whom? The guests first invited proved to be unworthy: they refused the invitation, ignored it, some even reacted with...More



Wednesday, August 17, 2022

Intercession

Epaphras, who is one of you, a bondservant of Christ, greets you, always labouring fervently for you in prayers, that you may stand perfect and complete in all the will of God.
Colossians 4:12.

Intercession
The believers in Colosse had opened their ears to the ingenious thinking of philosophers. They ran the danger of having their souls lured away from Christ and the Word of God.

Epaphras knew the believers in Colosse well and was aware of the present state of their faith. He noticed that the Lord Jesus no longer had the prime place in their hearts. What could he do for their...More



Tuesday, August 16, 2022

Only one step

He who hears my word and believes in him who sent me has everlasting life, and shall not come into judgment, but has passed from death into life.
John 5:24.

Only one step
A group of high-spirited young people filled the bus. A passenger took a seat near them and opened his Bible. In order to make the others laugh, one said jocularly but with a serious expression, “Excuse me, can you tell me the way to paradise?”

The man looked the youth in the face with a friendly smile and answered calmly but resolutely, “Paradise is only one step away from you. Won’t you take that step...More



Monday, August 15, 2022

The invitation to a wedding (3)

They (the guests invited to the wedding) made light of it and went their ways, one to his own farm, another to his business. And the rest seized his servants, treated them spitefully, and killed them. But when the king heard about it, he was furious. And he sent out his armies, destroyed those murderers, and burned up their city.
Matthew 22:5-7.

The invitation to a wedding (3)
The drama with those rebellious guests continued. First, they said, “No!” The second time they contemptuously gave no reply. They were simply not interested: they went about their normal business. Some even responded...More



Sunday, August 14, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (54)

They said to him, Where is your Father? Jesus answered, You know neither me nor my Father. If you had known me, you would have known my Father also. These words Jesus spoke in the treasury as he taught in the temple; and no-one laid hands on him, for his hour had not yet come.
John 8:19.20.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (54)
Jesus had spoken of His heavenly Father, who had sent Him and given witness of Him (ch. 5:37). Thereupon the Pharisees asked Him where His Father was. Could this be an indirect assertion that Joseph, Mary’s husband was no longer alive? Their question reveals at any rate...More



Saturday, August 13, 2022

Never again!

The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked; who can know it? I, the LORD, search the heart … to give every man according to his ways, according to the fruit of his doings.
Jeremiah 17:9.

Never again!
“Never again!” How often have we heard this horrified cry? It is uttered at anything unbearable: murderous wars, the atrocity of genocide, inconceivable terrorism etc. One wishes that we might learn lessons from the past, but what is the use? Blood continues to flow in many regions of the globe, and the lack of balance everywhere justifies worrying. The fact is that, despite...More



Friday, August 12, 2022

What is news?

The gospel of Christ … is the power of God to salvation for everyone ho believes.
Romans 1:16.

What is news?
Every newspaper reporter knows the quotation of a famous American journalist: “Dog bites man – no news; man bites dog – that’s news.” News must be something that really catches people’s attention. Routine matters interest no-one; so newspapers blaze eye-catching headlines on their front page to ensure that the article is read.

The word “gospel” signifies “good news”. The Greek original, “evangelion”, was the word used for the news a messenger brought...More



Thursday, August 11, 2022

Invitation to a wedding (2)

A certain king … sent out his servants to call those who were invited to the wedding; and they were not willing to come. Again he sent out other servants, saying, Tell those who are invited: See I have prepared my dinner, my oxen and fatted cattle are killed, and all things are ready. Come to the wedding.
Matthew 22:2-4.

Invitation to a wedding (2)
One can hardly believe what we have read here: “They were not willing to come”. The invited guests proved to be disloyal subjects, rebels, who did not wish to celebrate with the king and showed disrespect for his son.

The king sent out...More



Wednesday, August 10, 2022

When God told Gideon to go and save the people from the hand of...

Tear down the altar of Baal that your father has, and cut down the wooden image that is beside it; and build an altar to the LORD your God.
Judges 6:25.26.

When God told Gideon to go and save the people from the hand of the Midianites, he felt totally incompetent for the task. He saw no means of help, either in his family or in himself. Gideon said, “My clan is the weakest in Manasseh, and I am the least in my father’s house” (vv. 14:15). But that was not what mattered. Precisely because Gideon did not feel strong enough, he was the fitting instrument in God’s hands.

God countered...More



Tuesday, August 9, 2022

A spring of life

Blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD, and whose hope is in the LORD. For he shall be like a tree planted by the waters, which spreads out its roots by the river, and will not fear when heat comes.
Jeremiah 17:7.8.

A spring of life
There has been a period of drought, and the few trees in the garden present a lamentable sight. On land a few yards further down the hill stands a healthy green willow tree that has clearly not been affected by the dry weather. What is its secret? The tree was planted near a subterranean vein of water, from which its roots can draw sufficient water. As a result, it...More



Monday, August 8, 2022

The invitation to a wedding (1)

Jesus … spoke to them again by parables and said, The kingdom of heaven is like a certain king who arranged a marriage for his son, and sent out his servants to call those who were invited to the wedding.
Matthew 22:1-3.

The invitation to a wedding (1)
Once again the Lord Jesus told a parable. This parable deals with the kingdom of heaven. It does not describe a kingdom in heaven, but one on earth that is governed according to heavenly principles.

First the persons involved are named:

The king represents God, as we shall see in the course of these meditations. God invites...More



Sunday, August 7, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (53)

You judge according to the flesh; I judge no-one. And yet if I do judge, my judgment is true; for I am not alone, but I am with the Father who sent me. It is also written in your law that the testimony of two men is true. I am one who bears witness of myself, and the Father who sent me bears witness of me.
John 8:15-18.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (53)
The Pharisees revealed their self-assurance: having expressed their judgment on the guilty adulteress, they then passed judgment on the Son of God. How stubborn they were! On the one hand they judged by appearances (cf. John 7:24), then they...More



Saturday, August 6, 2022

Herod the tetrarch was Herod Antipas, the second son of the cruel...

At that time Herod the tetrarch heard the report about Jesus and said to his servants, This is John the Baptist; he is risen from the dead, and therefore these powers are at work in him.
Matthew 14:1.2.

Herod the tetrarch was Herod Antipas, the second son of the cruel king Herod the Great. Herod Antipas spent his childhood in Rome. After the death of his father he became governor of Galilee and Perea. The evangelist Matthew reported the beheading of John the Baptist, for which Herod Antipas was responsible. What was the background to this heinous deed? Adultery: Herod had divorced his first wife to marry...More



Friday, August 5, 2022

The piggy bank

Cause me to hear your loving kindness in the morning, for in you do I trust; cause me to know the way in which I should walk, for I lift up my soul to you. Deliver me, o LORD; from my enemies; in you I take shelter.
Psalm 143:8.9.

The piggy bank
The Perez family’s dog started barking in the courtyard one night. Everyone got up at once. They knew that guerrilla fighters were hidden near their village. The evening before some of them had come and extorted money from them. The children clung to their parents’ hands in fear.

Amid loud banging at the front door coarse voices demanded,...More



Thursday, August 4, 2022

The devil actually exists. But he takes care to...

There shall not be found among you anyone who … conjures spells or a medium, or a spiritist, or one who calls up the dead. … The LORD your God will raise up for you a Prophet like me from your midst, from your brethren. Him you shall hear.
Deuteronomy 18:10.11.15.

The devil actually exists. But he takes care to conceal himself and to play down the occult and his various artful ways. Magic, witchcraft and extra-sensory perception are trivialised in many science fiction novels and films, and even in popular children’s books. In this way inhibitions are destroyed and the occult becomes more attractive. How...More



Wednesday, August 3, 2022

Some parents make the same mistake nowadays as Isaac and Rebecca did...

Esau was a skilful hunter, a man of the field; but Jacob was a mild man, dwelling in tents. And Isaac loved Esau, because he ate of his game, but Rebecca loved Jacob.
Genesis 25:27.28.

Some parents make the same mistake nowadays as Isaac and Rebecca did so long ago. They give preference to one of their children; the others struggle with all their might to get their parents’ affection and recognition – and the whole family suffers as a result.

It was no different with Isaac and Rebecca. Their two sons quarrelled and opposed each other, but God brought them together again. He wishes to heal...More



Tuesday, August 2, 2022

Open doors – even behind bars!

See, I have set before you an open door, and no-one can shut it.
Revelation 3:8.

Open doors – even behind bars!
All over the world God is constantly opening doors daily for people to hear the good news of Jesus Christ. A few years ago two missionaries from Africa reported how even a barred door opened:

“Alongside our work in the schools, the Lord opened a prison door here. Months previously preachers had requested that they be permitted to enter the prison to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ to the inmates. There was no reaction. So we occasionally went there to give the visitors...More



Monday, August 1, 2022

In this incident Jesus was sought out by a...

The same day the Sadducees, who say there is no resurrection, came to him. … Jesus … said to them, You are mistaken, not knowing the scriptures.
Matthew 22:23.29.

In this incident Jesus was sought out by a Jewish religious faction who maintained that there is no life after death. In contrast to the strict Pharisees, the Sadducees were the liberal theologians of their day. Both these groups were hostile towards Christ and regularly asked Him catch questions.

How did the Lord Jesus deal with the Sadducees’ questions? First of all, He listened carefully to them. With an absurd story they...More



Sunday, July 31, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (52)

Then Jesus spoke to them again, saying, I am the light of the world. He who follows me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life. The Pharisees therefore said to him, You bear witness of yourself; your witness is not true. Jesus answered and said to them, Even if I bear witness of myself, my witness is true, for I know where I came from and where I am going, but you do not know where I come from and where I am going.
John 8:12-14.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (52)
The Pharisees had caught a woman in the act of adultery and taken her to Jesus. In their hypocritical self-righteousness...More



Saturday, July 30, 2022

This woman was bent over with her face hopelessly looking...

There was a woman who had a spirit of infirmity eighteen years, and was bent over and could in no way raise herself up. But when Jesus saw her, he called her to him, and said to her, Woman, you are loosed from your infirmity. And he laid his hands on her, and immediately she was made straight, and glorified God.
Luke 13:11-13.

This woman was bent over with her face hopelessly looking down. She had been like it for eighteen years, seeing nothing but the ground and her feet. She couldn’t possibly raise her eyes to look at the sky.

It is no different for many people in this world. The...More



Friday, July 29, 2022

Anne’s question

If anyone sins, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. And he himself is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the whole world.
1 John 2:1.

Anne’s question
Anne has just come into contact with the gospel. She is well disposed towards it, but one question troubles her: “How could Christ expiate my sins on the cross before I ever committed them?”

Let us suppose that a school playground is built on the edge of a ravine. As the children lose the ball when it goes through the wire fencing, the teacher forbade playing on that side of...More



Thursday, July 28, 2022

The cross of the Son of God

Now from the sixth hour until the ninth hour there was darkness over all the land. And about the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? That is, My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?
Matthew 27:45.46.

The cross of the Son of God
How did the people whom Jesus had come to save treat Him? Not as a king, nor as a prophet, nor as a righteous person, not even as a human being. Those earthworms, with their vehement hatred, humiliated Him to the point of saying, “I am a worm, and no man, a reproach of men” (Psalm 22:6). They estimated His worth at thirty...More



Wednesday, July 27, 2022

Restoration, refreshment and guidance all form part of...

He restores my soul; he leads me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.
Psalm 23:3.

Restoration, refreshment and guidance all form part of the Lord Jesus’ service on our behalf.

This shows His care and considerate attention for every step that we take. We are refreshed and guided.

“He restores my soul” means that He fortifies it with spiritual strength. This is not a mere momentary experience, after which we are more despondent than we were previously. The Lord always grants us lasting strength for what lies ahead. Such untiring attention keeps us dependent on Him and...More



Tuesday, July 26, 2022

Silently the coffin with its adornment of flowers was...

The light of the wicked indeed goes out. … He is uprooted from the shelter of his tent, and they parade him before the king of terrors.
Job 18:5.14.

Silently the coffin with its adornment of flowers was lowered into the grave and disappeared from sight. The funeral was over. People hurried off, getting away from the scene of death.

At the cemetery gate I met a former colleague from a theatrical group. We conversed about times we had together acting. “You know,” I recalled, “when the final curtain came down after a bad performance, there was nothing more we could do about it. Complaints and...More



Monday, July 25, 2022

The Lord Jesus has promised to take all who...

I will come again and receive you to myself.

And thus we shall always be with the Lord.

John 14:3; 1 Thessalonians 4:17.

The Lord Jesus has promised to take all who trust in Him for salvation to be with Him for eternity. When it actually happens, can you imagine what the newspapers will report on the following day? Headlines like: “Millions of the world’s inhabitants disappear” will bring varied reactions. Some will rejoice at first: they will never again be troubled by gospel preaching; there will be countless houses to occupy and bank accounts to plunder etc. Others may be perturbed by the...More



Sunday, July 24, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (51)

Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst. When Jesus had raised himself up and saw no-one but the woman, he said to her, Woman, where are those accusers of yours? Has no-one condemned you? She said, No-one, Lord. And Jesus said to her, Neither do I condemn you, go and sin no more.
John 8:9-11.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (51)
Jesus and the adulteress were left there alone. The tension of this incident in the region of the temple was dissipated. The plan of the scribes and Pharisees to emerge victorious had been thwarted. They were the ones embarrassed; not the Lord. Unable to...More



Saturday, July 23, 2022

The Bible tells us repeatedly that God hears...

O you who hear prayer, to you all flesh will come.

This poor man cried out, and the LORD heard him, and saved him out of all his troubles.

Psalm 65:2; 34:6.

The Bible tells us repeatedly that God hears. He hears us when we cry to Him in troublesome situations. Indeed, He hears our groaning and sighing: He hears and is ready to come and help (cf. Exodus 3:7.8).

Among people it is often the subordinate one who listens to his superior, the pupil to his teacher, the workman to his boss; and it is difficult for us to find a listening ear in someone in a high position. But God is quite...More



Friday, July 22, 2022

The lost child (2)

In my distress I called upon the LORD, and … he heard my voice.

In the day when I cried out, you answered me, and made me bold with strength in my soul.

Psalm 18:6; 138:3.

The lost child (2)
The unwanted colporteur is on his way to the next village. Meanwhile he kneels down in the snow to pray urgently for the missing baby. Suddenly he hears a baby crying. The sound seems to come from a disused well. Xi is shocked to find a tiny child wrapped in a blanket but blue with cold. It is the stolen baby, a little girl. She had been thrown away, because the people in the town would buy only...More



Thursday, July 21, 2022

The lost child (1)

I have even called you by your name. … I am the LORD, and there is no other; there is no God besides me.
Isaiah 45:4.5.

The lost child (1)
The scene is China towards the end of 1989. In the snow and icy wind the colporteur Xi is selling Bibles and gospels. In the mountainous country of the province of Gansu he goes from village to village. When he arrives in the final village of his tour, he notices at once that something is wrong. People are standing together in small groups.

“Good morning, everybody. I have some good news for you all.”

“Be quiet, will you? We have...More



Wednesday, July 20, 2022

The book of Job relates the history of a man who was...

Job answered the LORD and said, … I have heard of you by the hearing of the ear, but now my eye sees you.
Job 42:1.5.

The book of Job relates the history of a man who was put to the test through God’s silence. Struck down unexpectedly by the death of his children and a grave illness, he at first accepted his suffering as from the hand of God. He was still able to praise the LORD’s Name (cf. ch. 1:21; 2:10).
When his friends then visited him, they sat in silence by him for a whole week. Then Job poured out his trouble and had to endure the accusations of his friends, who accused him of secret sins....More



Tuesday, July 19, 2022

Did you say “sin”?

Against you, you only, have I sinned, and done this evil in your sight.

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

Psalm 51:4; 1 John 1:9.

Did you say “sin”?
When we hear what people say, we must conclude that there are many different ideas regarding the concept of sin. One says that sin is an idea of yesteryear, a medieval concept that the church used to instil fear in believers and keep them in its grip.

Another might suggest that offences worthy of imprisonment are sin, like murder, kidnapping,...More



Monday, July 18, 2022

I am (11)

Jesus … said to them, Whom are you seeking? They answered him, Jesus of Nazareth. Jesus said to them, I am (he). … Now when he said to them, I am (he), they drew back and fell to the ground.
John 18:4-6.

I am (11)
This series of meditations on the well-known sayings of the Lord Jesus in John’s gospel began with a pointer to His divine glory. We should like to conclude it in similar fashion.

After the Lord had lovingly prepared His disciples for His imminent return to heaven and the subsequent period of time, He commended them to His Father in prayer. Then He stepped out, fully...More



Sunday, July 17, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (50)

Jesus stooped down and wrote on the ground with his finger, as though he did not hear. So when they continued asking him, he raised himself up and said to them, He who is without sin among you, let him throw a stone at her first. And again he stooped down and wrote on the ground. Then those who heard it, being convicted by their conscience, went out one by one, beginning with the oldest even to the last.
John 8:6-9.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (50)
How would Jesus react to the Pharisees’ catch question? Would He condemn the adulteress according to the law, or would He graciously let her go...More



Saturday, July 16, 2022

In Matthew’s gospel the Lord Jesus is described as...

They shall call his name Immanuel, which is translated, God with us.
Matthew 1:23.

In Matthew’s gospel the Lord Jesus is described as the King of Israel. But another thought is also found throughout this gospel, namely, that God wishes to be with His people. In eternity there will be a new heaven and a new earth; then God will dwell with men (Revelation 21:1.3). But even in the present age He wants to be with those who belong to Him.
In the first chapter we read why He wishes to be with mankind: “He will save his people from their sins” (v. 21). The name “Jesus” translated actually means “The...More



Friday, July 15, 2022

The European royal houses formerly had absolute power in their...

The king’s heart is in the hand of the LORD, like the rivers of water; he turns it wherever he wishes.
Proverbs 21:1.

The European royal houses formerly had absolute power in their lands. They claimed to have been appointed “by God’s grace”. Today monarchs have merely a representative function as a rule; the real power lies in parliaments and governments.

Kings of past ages and heads of governments today think and plan. And God has given them, as He has to all, the possibility to make morally justifiable decisions.

For all their decisions and actions they will one day have to...More



Thursday, July 14, 2022

Two of Jesus’ disciples were returning downcast from...

They constrained him (Jesus), saying, Abide with us, for it is toward evening, and the day is far spent. And he went in to stay with them.
Luke 24:29.

Two of Jesus’ disciples were returning downcast from Jerusalem to their home village of Emmaus. The leaders of the people had condemned their Lord and Master in a totally unjust court case. Now he had died on the cross. Every hope that their nation would be liberated and conditions would improve had been dashed.

On their journey a stranger suddenly joined them. At first it seemed as if he had heard nothing of the events in Jerusalem. Then an...More



Wednesday, July 13, 2022

The marriage of the Lamb that will take place in heaven shortly before...

Let us be glad and rejoice and give him glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and his wife has made herself ready.
Revelation 19:7.

The marriage of the Lamb that will take place in heaven shortly before the establishment of the millennium has many parallels to a wedding as we know it: we find great joy mentioned, and also fine clothing, invited guests and, of course, the bride and the bridegroom (vv. 7-9) But there is one vast difference: It is not the bride who is the centre of attraction here, but the Bridegroom. It is His marriage, the marriage of the Lamb.

Christ, who is the Lamb, has...More



Tuesday, July 12, 2022

At the start of the 20th century a lady regularly distributed...

I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh.
Ezekiel 36:26.

At the start of the 20th century a lady regularly distributed printed copies of the sermons of a well-known preacher in the streets of a European capital city. One of the coachmen in the square outside a station had repeatedly accepted the leaves.
One Sunday, however, he refused one with the remark that he no longer wanted to read the sermons. The lady asked him politely, “Why not?” He answered, “If I go on reading them, I shall have to change...More



Monday, July 11, 2022

I am (10)

I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without me you can do nothing.
John 15:5.

I am (10)
The branches grow out of the stem of the vine to bear the fruit that the vine-grower awaits. If a branch is removed from the vine, the flow of the sap so vital to maintain life is interrupted, and no fruit will result.

The prophet Isaiah had already used the illustration of a vineyard to depict God’s earthly people Israel. He described the assiduous care applied to ensure that a good harvest could be anticipated. But when the time for...More



Sunday, July 10, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (49)

Now early in the morning he came again into the temple, and all the people came to him, and he sat down and taught them. Then the scribes and Pharisees brought to him a woman caught in adultery. And when they had set her in the midst, they said to him, Teacher, this woman was caught in adultery, in the very act. Now Moses in the law commanded us that such should be stoned. But what do you say? This they said, testing him, that they might have something of which to accuse him.
John 8:2-6.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (49)
After their dispute with the officers of the law (concerning their failure...More



Saturday, July 9, 2022

John the Baptist called upon the people of Israel to...

In those days John the Baptist came preaching in the wilderness of Judea, and saying, Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.
Matthew 3:1.2.

John the Baptist called upon the people of Israel to repent. That means, they should change their attitude towards God, they should acknowledge that they had sinned and from then on lead their life according to God’s will. The reason for him preaching this message was that the promised Messiah and His kingdom were about to appear. Jesus Christ would soon be seen in public. The long-awaited, promised Messiah had finally come.

Repenting, i.e. regretting...More



Friday, July 8, 2022

God’s wonders

God ... does great things and unsearchalbe, marvellous things without number.
Job 5:9.

God’s wonders
If we look through a telescope or a microscope, we discover in wonderment the extraordinary work of the great architect of the universe: God. Here are three examples:

The temperature. At the centre of the sun it is 15 million degrees centigrade (27 million °F), and we are about 90 million miles away from it, just the right distance for the earth’s temperature to be suitable for life. Why wasn’t the earth placed twice as far away or even nearer? Was it chance or intention?
The...More



Thursday, July 7, 2022

Why was the Lord Jesus “moved with compassion” over this...

When Jesus went out he saw a great multitude; and he was moved with compassion for them, and healed their sick. When it was evening, his disciples came to him, saying, This is a deserted place, and the hour is already late. Send the multitudes away, that they may go into the villages and buy themselves food. But Jesus said to them, They do not need to go away. You give them something to eat.
Matthew 14:14-16.

Why was the Lord Jesus “moved with compassion” over this crowd? Weren’t they all more or less wicked sinners? Weren’t many of their problems caused by their failure to lead their lives with God?...More



Wednesday, July 6, 2022

True faith

Faith is the substantiating of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.
Hebrews 11:1 (J.N.D.).

True faith
Today’s verse from the Bible has less to do with saving faith than the effective faith in a Christian’s everyday life. It describes two salient characteristics of faith:

“Faith is the substantiating of things hoped for”. As Christians we have a sure hope. The Lord Jesus will return to take us into our heavenly home. This glorious future, of which the Bible assures us, has an effect on our daily life, if it is already a reality for us through faith. Instead of...More



Tuesday, July 5, 2022

Many peace pacts have been concluded between nations since...

There are many plans in a man’s heart, nevertheless the LORD’s counsel – that will stand.
Proverbs 19:21.

Many peace pacts have been concluded between nations since the end of the Second World War. In the mean time peace has prevailed in Western Europe for over seventy years. For this we can be truly thankful. However, the Bible predicts that in the not too distant future a massive economic and political crisis will arise in Europe. Governments will then hand over power to a single man – and it will not be for their peace and blessing!

“God has put it into their hearts to fulfil his...More



Monday, July 4, 2022

I am (9)

I am the way, the truth, and the life. No-one comes to the Father except through me.
John 14:6.

I am (9)
Death means eternal separation from God; so even the simplest soul can understand that life must be present to enable man to dwell in the Father’s house. With God only eternal life counts, for all human life ends with physical death, as we all know, unless the rapture of the Church, when Christ returns for His own, takes place beforehand.

The Lord Jesus Christ is life. In the introductory verses to his gospel the apostle John writes of Him: “In him was life, and the life was the...More



Sunday, July 3, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (48)

Nicodemus … , being one of them, said to them, Does our law judge a man before it hears him and knows what he is doing? They answered and said to him, Are you also from Galilee? Search and look, for no prophet has arisen out of Galilee. And everyone went to his own house. But Jesus went to the Mount of Olives.
John 7:50-8:1.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (48)
Hadn’t the Pharisees just maintained that none of the leaders and Pharisees believed in Jesus? How fanaticism leads to erroneous ideas!

Quite unexpectedly someone appeared who was both a leader and a Pharisee: Nicodemus. We...More



Saturday, July 2, 2022

The “cut flower” society

God created man in his own image; in the image of God he created him.
Genesis 1:27.

The “cut flower” society
In 1944 a professor of Stanford University, U.S.A., made the following comparison:

“The great danger of our age is that we belong to a ʻcut flowerʼ society. However beautiful cut flowers are and whatever ideas we have for keeping them, they must die. They die because they have been separated from their nourishing roots.” Then comes the comparison:

“We try to preserve the dignity of the individual, ignoring the fundamental belief that everyone is made in the...More



Friday, July 1, 2022

In the books of the Bible written by the apostle John light is...

The true light was that which, coming into the world, lightens every man.
John 1:9 (J.N.D.).

In the books of the Bible written by the apostle John light is an important subject alongside life and love. In John’s gospel we read that Christ said of Himself: “I am the light of the world” (ch. 8:12).
What does this imagery mean? In the first place, another statement by John helps us: “God is light, and in him is no darkness at all” (1 John 1:5). In the Bible darkness stands for evil, light for what is pure and good. That God is light signifies that God is good absolutely.

By contrast,...More



Thursday, June 30, 2022

Come up here!

Not everyone who says to me, Lord, Lord, shall enter the kingdom of heaven. … Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord. … Then I will declare to them, I never knew you.

Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved.

Matthew 7:21-23; Acts 16:31.

Come up here!
On the 30th June 1859 the tightrope walker Charles Blondin crossed the Niagara Falls on a rope 330 metres long before thousands of enthusiastic spectators. He repeated the exploit seventeen times with additional variations: on stilts, pushing a wheelbarrow, with a sack on his shoulders, making perilous jumps etc. It...More



Wednesday, June 29, 2022

When the Jews, who had returned from Babylon, entered...

Though fear had come upon them because of the people of those countries, they (the children of Israel) set the altar on its bases; and they offered burnt offerings on it to the LORD.
Ezra 3:3.

When the Jews, who had returned from Babylon, entered their home town of Jerusalem, a desolate scene of devastation met their eyes. Seventy years previously the soldiers of the new Babylonian king Nebuchadnezzar had made a thorough job of the destruction. How forlorn they must have felt amid all those ruins. And it may have been the first time they became properly aware that the present inhabitants of the land regarded...More



Tuesday, June 28, 2022

I just couldn’t!

My grace is sufficient for you, for my strength is made perfect in weakness.

I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

2 Corinthians 12:9; Philippians 4:13.

I just couldn’t!
Commenting on the expression, “My grace is sufficient for you”, an evangelist confirmed that God’s grace enables us to face anything. One of his listeners sought him out the next day to embarrass him by asking him point-blank:

“Have you the grace to die as a martyr?” – “No,” was the immediate reply, “but today I have the grace to take the meeting for which I have been...More



Monday, June 27, 2022

I am (8)

I am the way, the truth, and the life. No-one comes to the Father except through me.
John 14:6.

I am (8)
It is exceedingly difficult to define the truth in positive terms. On the other hand, it is relatively easy to say what it is not by using negative phrases. With the help of a man of God with a clear understanding of His Word it is possible to give the following explanation:

The truth is a divine property that serves as a measuring standard, so that everything can be assessed in its actual character, whether it be good or bad, whether men, angels or demons; even God Himself can be...More



Sunday, June 26, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (47)

The officers came to the chief priests and Pharisees, who said to them, Why have you not brought him? The officers answered, No man ever spoke like this man. Then the Pharisees answered, Are you also deceived? Have any of the rulers or the Pharisees believed in him? But this crowd that does not know the law is accursed.
John 7:45-49.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (47)
Jesus’ presence and His sayings enraged people. Some of His opponents wanted to arrest Him. But none dared to do so. Nothing can happen in this world, unless God allows it.

But there was another reason for the failure...More



Saturday, June 25, 2022

Five 14-year-old girls, all friends, were on holiday by the...

I am poor and sorrowful; let your salvation, o God, set me up on high.
Psalm 69:29.

Five 14-year-old girls, all friends, were on holiday by the North Sea. At low tide they were searching for shells in the mud flats and had forgotten the time. High tide came, and the narrow channel through which they had walked, filled with water. The way back to the mainland was cut off.
Ahead of them was an inhabited island that seemed near enough. They set off in that direction. Suddenly they were standing before a shipping channel and saw nothing but water. Only then did they telephone for help. The water was rising...More



Friday, June 24, 2022

Hell and the second death

Blessed and holy is he who has part in the first resurrection. Over such the second death has no power. … The lake of fire: this is the second death. And anyone not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.
Revelation 20:6.14.15.

Hell and the second death
In the book of judgments, the Revelation, there is a third expression for hell: “the second death”. What does it mean? Everybody is destined to die once. God had warned Adam that, if he disobeyed, he would die (Genesis 2:17). Since then death has been the earthly end of every human being. Afterwards, as God states,...More



Thursday, June 23, 2022

The reality of hell

Everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels.

How can you escape the condemnation of hell?

Jesus who delivers us from the wrath to come.

Matthew 25:41; 23:33; 1 Thessalonians 1:10.

The reality of hell
You may think this hardly a pleasant subject, and you would be right! But the object of this calendar is not to present a choice of soothing texts, but God’s complete message to mankind. The word “hell” appears frequently in the Bible; so we cannot simply pass over it. We deal with the subject in the light of the Word of God with the wish that no reader should...More



Wednesday, June 22, 2022

The privilege and hope of God’s children

Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when he is revealed, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is.
1 John 3:2.

The privilege and hope of God’s children
Believers’ greatest hope might be fulfilled at any moment. Jesus Christ will come again and take His own to be with Him in His Father’s house. Shortly before His return to heaven He assured His disciples: “If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to myself; that where I am, there you may be also” (John 14:3). There in the...More



Tuesday, June 21, 2022

Jehoiakim, the king of Judah, was admittedly in a difficult situation. His...

It happened, when Jehudi had read three or four columns, that the king cut it with the scribe’s knife, and cast it into the fire that was on the hearth, until all the scroll was consumed.
Jeremiah 36:23.

Jehoiakim, the king of Judah, was admittedly in a difficult situation. His land was occupied by the troops of the Babylonian empire, and the capital Jerusalem besieged. At this time the prophet Jeremiah announced the conquering of the city at God’s command. It was a difficult task, for the way despots dealt with unpleasant admonishers and their writings is well known. In this case it was not a message...More



Monday, June 20, 2022

I am (7)

I am the way, the truth, and the life. No-one comes to the Father except through me.
John 14:6.

I am (7)
Shortly before His death on the cross, the Lord Jesus informed His disciples about His return to His Father’s house, to which He would introduce them at a later point in time. He told them that they knew the way, at which Thomas protested their ignorance of both the destination and the way there. The Lord then pointed out three essentials for attaining the Father’s presence: the proper and exclusive way, the truth and everlasting life.

The significance of knowing the right way...More



Sunday, June 19, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (46)

Many from the crowd, when they heard this saying, said, Truly this is the prophet. Others said, This is the Christ. But some said, Will the Christ come out of Galilee? Has not the Scripture said that the Christ comes from the seed of David and from the town of Bethlehem, where David was? So there was a division among the people because of him. Now some of them wanted to take him, but no-one laid hands on him.
John 7:40-44.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (46)
The wonderful sayings of Jesus and His friendly invitation to come to Him in faith left a deep impression on many people. However, instead of...More



Saturday, June 18, 2022

This story might well bear the title “Ingratitude is the world’s reward.” One...

There was a little city with few men in it; and a great king came against it, besieged it, and built great snares around it. Now there was found in it a poor, wise man, and he by his wisdom delivered the city. Yet no-one remembered that same poor man.
Ecclesiastes 9:14.15.

This story might well bear the title “Ingratitude is the world’s reward.” One might add a few thoughts about our forgetfulness and then go on with our normal routine. But what does it really mean? Simply this: the town represents man’s soul, lonely and defenceless. The great king can be compared to Satan, who is ready to conquer and...More



Friday, June 17, 2022

The screen

You have turned for me my mourning into dancing; … o LORD, my God, I will give thanks to you for ever.
Psalm 30:11.12.

The screen
A man who had had a serious accident lay in his hospital bed. There he had plenty of time to consider things. As the prospects of healing were uncertain, he also thought about death.

One day a nurse suddenly put a screen round his bed. The man understood what that meant for him: he had little time left to live.

On the wall opposite his bed hung a text from the Bible: “Come to me, all you who labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you...More



Thursday, June 16, 2022

A certain ruler came to the Lord and asked Him a question that...

A certain ruler asked him, saying, Good teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?
Luke 18:18.

A certain ruler came to the Lord and asked Him a question that occupied him intensely and made him feel uneasy. “What must I do to inherit eternal life?” He put the question to Jesus, recognising Him to be a “good teacher” who was able to interpret Old Testament scriptures correctly.

“You know the commandments,” Jesus answered and quoted five examples.

“All these things I have kept from my youth”, replied the ruler.

You still lack one thing,” the Lord Jesus...More



Wednesday, June 15, 2022

How grace teaches us

The grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men, teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age.
Titus 2:11.12.

How grace teaches us
Every time the grace of God leads someone to conversion and faith in the Lord Jesus it gives us a cause for amazement and thanksgiving. It is not our own desert, but sheer grace that saves a sinner from judgment and puts all things right with our holy God. But God’s grace towards the redeemed souls does not end there. It is available for them daily to help and enable...More



Tuesday, June 14, 2022

Manaen and Herod

In the church that was at Antioch there were certain prophets and teachers, Barnabas, Simeon, … Lucius … (and) Manaen, who had been brought up with Herod the tetrarch.
Acts 13:1.

Manaen and Herod
Two names, the first one unknown, the second well known in history. These two men had grown up together. In today’s verse God acquaints us with these two persons. Manaen was a teacher in the early Christian company in Antioch. He had received Jesus Christ as his Saviour and Lord and learned to love and serve Him. He was thus very useful for the early Christians.

Herod, on the other hand,...More



Monday, June 13, 2022

I am (6)

I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me, though he may die, he shall live. And whoever lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this?
John 11:25.26.

I am (6)
It must have been overpowering for Martha to be confronted with a statement by the Lord Jesus so rich in meaning only a short time after her brother’s death. Martha believed in the resurrection; however, for her it was an event of the future, due to take place at the end of the age. Seeing the resurrection personified before her was something she could not grasp. But her faith came to her aid, for she...More



Sunday, June 12, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (45)

On the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, If anyone thirsts, let him come to me and drink. He who believes in me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water. But this he spoke concerning the Spirit, whom those believing in him would receive; for the Holy Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified.
John 7:37-39.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (45)
The Feast of Tabernacles was approaching its end. On the eighth day there was to be a holy convocation for the people of Israel, which was the climax of their joy...More



Saturday, June 11, 2022

The apostle John deals with three great subjects in his epistle: life, light...

God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God in him.
1 John 4:16.

The apostle John deals with three great subjects in his epistle: life, light and love. He speaks of divine love from experience. When he speaks of himself in his gospel, John calls himself simply “the disciple whom Jesus loved”. He was so full of the assurance that the Son of God loved him! Here are a few aspects of God’s love:

God is love. This is stated in today’s verse. Divine love exceeds all love on a purely human plane, for God’s love has one particular quality: He loves us unreservedly without...More



Friday, June 10, 2022

If one wishes to come to God, must one give up one’s personality or...

This people honours me with their lips, but their heart is far from me. And in vain they worship me, teaching as doctrine the commandments of men.

Repent, and believe in the gospel.

Mark 7:6.7; 1:15.

If one wishes to come to God, must one give up one’s personality or be forced to adapt oneself to the form of a religion?

Not at all! Jesus Christ Himself vehemently opposed compulsory formality and traditions. He reprimanded the religious leaders of His day, who, with their regulations, hindered people from coming to God. Moreover, God created people with varied characters. How could He...More



Thursday, June 9, 2022

God: the Creator and Saviour

By faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that the things which are seen were not made of things which are visible.
Hebrews 11:3.

God: the Creator and Saviour
I grew up in an atheistic family. From early on I was taught that religious faith was not only useless but even bad. Like my father, who was a scientist, I totally rejected any form of religiousness or spirituality. I myself became a biochemist.

Today I am a Christian, and have a profound sense of God’s grace. The redeeming power of the Lord Jesus never fails to astound me.

What led me...More



Wednesday, June 8, 2022

Who is Jesus?

No-one has seen God at any time. The only begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, he has declared him.

Christ came, who is over all, the eternally blessed God.

John 1:18; Roman 9:5.

Who is Jesus?
Some years ago a book appeared entitled “How did Jesus become God?” The way this title presents Jesus Christ is entirely false; the Bible states the very opposite: God became Man in Jesus, His only begotten Son. Indeed, “the Word became flesh and dwelt among us” (John 1:14). This verse, which is the basis of Christian faith, contains a truth that is surprising and a...More



Tuesday, June 7, 2022

Anne is feeling uneasy this evening. She lives in a remotely situated...

Call upon me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you, and you shall glorify me.

Before they call, I will answer; and while they are still speaking, I will hear.

Psalm 50:15; Isaiah 65:24.

Anne is feeling uneasy this evening. She lives in a remotely situated house. Her husband and son left the house in the morning. Now a heavy storm has forced her to seek other accommodation for the night.

The thought of having to spend the night alone only increases Anne’s fear. Doubtful figures have been roaming about the neighbourhood recently. So Anne knelt down and asked God for protection. She...More



Monday, June 6, 2022

Since that memorable day of Pentecost almost 2,000 years ago, when the...

The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God.
Romans 8:16.

Since that memorable day of Pentecost almost 2,000 years ago, when the Holy Spirit was “poured out” upon the apostles, all Christians have received the Holy Spirit by laying claim to the redemptive work of Jesus Christ in faith (Acts 2:33; Ephesians 1:13).
The gift of the Holy Spirit has an extremely blessed effect in every department of a Christian’s life. Through the Spirit of God


  • they are testified to be children of God;

  • they have free access to God in prayer...More


    Sunday, June 5, 2022

    Ten days after the ascension of the Lord Jesus the feast of Pentecost, the...

    When the day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing, mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.
    Acts 2:1-4.

    Ten days after the ascension of the Lord Jesus the feast of Pentecost, the Jewish harvest festival, was celebrated in Jerusalem. It was one of the three great feasts, at which...More



    Saturday, June 4, 2022

    The purpose of our conscience

    Give to your servant an understanding heart … that I may discern between good and evil.

    How much more shall the blood of Christ … cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?

    1 Kings 3:9; Hebrews 9:14.

    The purpose of our conscience
    To distinguish between good and evil we need a moral sense organ, a kind of measuring instrument. But every measuring instrument has to be calibrated to give a correct reading. Our conscience can be good, weak, burdened or hardened, and also needs an established standard, which we do not have in ourselves.

    Take this example:...More



    Friday, June 3, 2022

    Paul White was a missionary doctor in the land known today as...

    As the children have partaken of flesh and blood, he himself (Jesus) likewise shared in the same, that through death he might destroy him who had the power of death, that is, the devil, and release those who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage.
    Hebrews 2:14.15.

    Paul White was a missionary doctor in the land known today as Tanzania. One evening a whirlwind blew over the steppe and damaged the roof of the men’s ward. White described it as follows:

    “Two Africans lay in the ward with broken legs. One was almost healed and could already walk about, but the other was...More



    Thursday, June 2, 2022

    Disappearance

    O LORD, how manifold are your works! In wisdom you have made them all. The earth is full of your possessions.
    Psalm 104:24.

    Disappearance
    The last known male white rhinoceros died in March 2018. This species, of which only two females remain; is in danger of dying out. “When I hear of the destruction of a species, for me it is like all the works of a great writer disappearing”, said Theodore Roosevelt.

    We do not know which writer he was thinking of. But are not the vegetal and animal species, in their extraordinary diversity, the works of God, that “great writer”? Each species...More



    Wednesday, June 1, 2022

    What hinders us?

    You ran well. Who hindered you from obeying the truth?
    Galatians 5:7.

    What hinders us?
    A Christian’s life is often compared with a race in the Bible. The thought of soon being with our Lord spurs us on to run towards the heavenly goal with all our energy.

    However, it frequently happens that we slow up on the way to heaven or even come to a stop.

    There are various reaons for this.

    Pehaps we have committed some sin and are not prepared to put things in order with God and other people. With our conscience weighing on our mind, we lack both the strength and the joy...More



    Tuesday, May 31, 2022

    A gigantic image with feet of clay

    Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will by no means pass away.

    The earth and the works that are in it will be burned up.

    Matthew 24:35; 2 Peter 3:10.

    A gigantic image with feet of clay
    Our title describes something that appears to be solid but in fact is very fragile. It is taken from an account in the Bible (Daniel ch. 2). Nebuchadnezzar, the head of the Chaldean empire, had a strange dream. He saw a great statue made of four different parts. The prophet Daniel was able to explain its meaning to him. He said that this giant with feet of clay represented four different...More



    Monday, May 30, 2022

    I am (5)

    I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives his life for the sheep. … I am the good shepherd; and I know my sheep, and am known by my own.
    John 10:11.14.

    I am (5)
    What love there must have been in the heart of the Lord Jesus Christ to sacrifice His life for His sheep! David, Israel’s great king, had, as a boy, chased after a lion and a bear to snatch a lamb from their jaws, but that is a poor illustration of the love and devotion of the Saviour for the sheep of His flock, for through God’s preservation David managed to kill both the lion and the bear and escape with his life. To deliver...More



    Sunday, May 29, 2022

    Thoughts on the Gospel of John (44)

    The Pharisees heard the crowd murmuring these things concerning him, and the Pharisees and the chief priests sent officers to take him. Then Jesus said to them, I shall be with you a little while longer, and then I go to him who sent me. You will seek me and not find me, and where I am you cannot come. Then the Jews said among themselves, Where does he intend to go that we shall not find him? Does he intend to go to the dispersion among the Greeks and teach the Greeks? What is this thing that he said: You will seek me and not find me, and where I am you cannot come?
    John 7:32-36.

    Thoughts on the Gospel of...More



    Saturday, May 28, 2022

    Free of charge – but at what a cost!

    You were bought at a price.

    You … have redeemed us to God by your blood.

    1 Corinthians 6:20; Revelation 5:9.

    Free of charge – but at what a cost!
    We occasionally hear: “It’s too easy to say that it’s enough to believe to be saved!” We could reply: “Too easy for whom: for man, or for God?”

    In love God welcomes man just as he is, a sinner, and gives him eternal life. He makes him His child in order to receive him in His heaven. What does He demand in return? Only faith and trust. Believing is the simplest means of salvation there could be. It is within the grasp...More



    Friday, May 27, 2022

    It was dark, but the barrier tempted them and was easy to overcome. So...

    There is born to you this day in the city of David a Saviour, who is Christ the Lord.
    Luke 2:11.

    It was dark, but the barrier tempted them and was easy to overcome. So the two youths set about exploring the abandoned building site. Then one of them stumbled but held on to his companion and pulled him down with him into the soft mud of the excavated pit.

    In his panic the one shouted to the other, “Help me! Get me out of this! I’m up to my knees in this muck!” But the other one snorted, “You fool! I’m stuck just as much as you!” Neither of them could get free; so they had to shout for...More



    Thursday, May 26, 2022

    In His great love toward mankind the Son of God humbled Himself in...

    Therefore God also has highly exalted him and given him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
    Philippians 2:9-11.

    In His great love toward mankind the Son of God humbled Himself in a twofold manner: Jesus Christ, the eternal Son of God and Creator of the world became Man, entered His creation and lived on this earth. Then He went to the cross and voluntarily sacrificed His life for us. For that...More



    Wednesday, May 25, 2022

    A heroic act

    David said with longing, Oh, that someone would give me a drink of the water from the well of Bethlehem, which is by the gate.
    2 Samuel 23:15.

    A heroic act
    After David had expressed his wish, three of his faithful companions became active: “The three mighty men broke through the camp of the Philistines, drew water from the well of Bethlehem, which is by the gate, and took it and brought it to David” (v. 16).

    Their names are unknown and should remain so. But the action of these three heroes of David’s motivate every Christian to emulate them in the discipleship of the...More



    Tuesday, May 24, 2022

    Some time ago the case of a 23-year-old student caused a...

    You who say, Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, spend a year there, buy and sell, and make a profit; whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour that appears for a little time and then vanishes away. Instead you ought to say, If the Lord wills, we shall live and do this or that.
    James 4:13-15.

    Some time ago the case of a 23-year-old student caused a sensation. She had become infected with the so-called lassa fever on a journey through West Africa. During the final days of her journey she had not felt well and had therefore returned to Europe...More



    Monday, May 23, 2022

    I am (4)

    I am the door. If anyone enters by me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture.
    John 10:9.

    I am (4)
    We all know what a useful function doors have. We could not do without them; every day we use them to gain access to buildings, rooms and cupboards, or to secure our private domain against undesirable visitors. How good it is that the Lord Jesus regarded Himself as an ever open door when He uttered the words of the verse above. Everyone may enter to be saved and thus come into the security enjoyed by the entire flock of the Good Shepherd, for He Himself tends and guards it. If we...More



    Sunday, May 22, 2022

    Thoughts on the Gospel of John (43)

    Then Jesus cried out, as he taught in the temple, saying, You both know me, and you know where I am from; and I have not come of myself, but he who sent me is true, whom you do not know. But I know him, for I am from him, and he sent me. Therefore they sought to take him; but no-one laid a hand on him, because his hour had not yet come. And many of the people believed in him, and said, When the Christ comes, will he do more signs than these which this man has done?
    John 7:28-31.

    Thoughts on the Gospel of John (43)
    Some inhabitants of Jerusalem thought they knew where Jesus had come from. But they...More



    Saturday, May 21, 2022

    Life without an end?

    The LORD kills and makes alive.

    He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.

    1 Samuel 2:6; John 3:36.

    Life without an end?
    Extracts from a recent journal: “A Californian company has just unveiled a research project that visualises discovering secrets of human health. … The company’s objective is to extend the limit of ageing and even of death thanks to new technology. We could then detect early on any anomalies in the human body, so as to correct them and prolong life to the point of...More



    Friday, May 20, 2022

    Two centurions in the gospels (2)

    When the centurion, who stood opposite him (Jesus), saw that he cried out like this and breathed his last, he said, Truly this man was the Son of God.
    Mark 15:39.

    Two centurions in the gospels (2)
    The second centurion in the gospels was the captain in charge of the crucifixion of Jesus and the criminals. He had possibly made his soldiers mock Jesus, spit at Him and strike Him on the head. It was probably not the first execution he had participated in, but this one was out of the ordinary. The main victim had an unusually noble bearing. He ignored the insults and prayed for His executioners. He...More



    Thursday, May 19, 2022

    Two centurions in the gospels (1)

    The centurion answered and said, Lord, I am not worthy that you should come under my roof. But only speak a word, and my servant will be healed.

    By grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God.

    Matthew 8:8; Ephesians 2:8.

    Two centurions in the gospels (1)
    One would hardly expect to find two captains of the Roman legion in the gospels. Being used to commanding, they were not gentle, and their role in the occupational army didn’t seem suitable to turn them to Jesus, that Jew despised even by His compatriots.

    The first of them was...More



    Wednesday, May 18, 2022

    The love of money

    If riches increase, do not set your heart on them.

    We brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. And having food and clothing, with these we shall be content, … for the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil.

    Psalm 62:10; 1 Timothy 6:7-10.

    The love of money
    When the passion for money occupies someone, he will never be satisfied, for money cannot bring true peace of mind, being a deceitful power. It claims to ensure security, but does not keep its promises.

    Money, moreover, works havoc in man’s heart; it wins his confidence, but...More



    Tuesday, May 17, 2022

    “All this I must leave behind!”

    When one becomes rich, when the glory of his house is increased; ... when he dies he shall carry nothing away; his glory shall not descend after him.
    Psalm 49:16.17.

    “All this I must leave behind!”
    Jules Mazarin (1602-1661), the French cardinal and diplomat, was the minister ruling over France for a long period. He built up an enormous fortune through his income from numerous offices. In Paris he had his own palace built to accommodate his extensive library and many valuable paintings.

    Shortly before Mazarin’s death the Count of Brienne witnessed how he once again had dragged...More



    Monday, May 16, 2022

    I am (3)

    I am the light of the world. He who follows me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.
    John 8:12.

    I am (3)
    Almost the whole of Europe was enveloped in total darkness nightly during World War II. If the moon and stars disappeared behind the clouds, people ran the risk of colliding with persons and objects everywhere in the streets. As a result of our modern street lighting hardly anyone knows what real darkness is.

    It is just as black inside the human heart: not a ray of divine light can penetrate, unless the Lord Jesus dwells there. Scripture says of Him: “That was the...More



    Sunday, May 15, 2022

    Thoughts on the Gospel of John (42)

    Some of them from Jerusalem said, Is this not he whom they seek to kill? But look! He speaks boldly, and they say nothing to him. Do the rulers know indeed that this is truly the Christ? However, we know where this man is from; but when the Christ comes, no-one knows where he is from.
    John 7:25-27.

    Thoughts on the Gospel of John (42)
    What the Lord had taught publicly aroused amazement among some citizens of Jerusalem. They clearly knew that the Jewish leaders wished to kill Him (cf. John 5:18), in contrast to the multitude who could hardly believe that anyone had such an intention (cf. v. 20). Did...More



    Saturday, May 14, 2022

    Jesus Christ is God

    Jesus Christ. This is the true God and eternal life.

    God was in Christ reconciling the world to himself.

    1 John 5:20; 2 Corinthians 5:19.

    Jesus Christ is God
    Jesus Christ is not a “superman”, the greatest philosopher, the wisest of men, the most revered of the founders of religions – He is God, but He took a body like ours. For human beings this is a unique, incomprehensible fact. He was born, having been conceived by the Holy Spirit. That is why it is a serious matter to refuse Jesus Christ: it means refusing God. However, believing in Him is the door to a relationship with...More



    Friday, May 13, 2022

    From darkness to light (2)

    He (God) is gracious to him and says, Deliver him from going down to the pit; I have found a ransom.
    Job 33:24.

    From darkness to light (2)
    “The blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanses us from all sin” (1 John 1:7). I re-read those words and said, “That doesn’t apply to a murderer like me!”

    The following night I had the greatest struggle of my life. My heart called to God for mercy, and He answered me. I found peace in the morning. God gave me the assurance that Jesus had died for my sins, too. So I was ready to go into death with the Lord Jesus.

    The death sentence...More



    Thursday, May 12, 2022

    From darkness to light (1)

    Blessed be the LORD God, … who only does wondrous things!
    Psalm 72:18.

    From darkness to light (1)
    When I once visited a prisoner under sentence of death in the condemned cell, I wondered at the gleam on his face. He then told me his story:

    “Three years ago I was sentenced to death for murder. After the sentence was pronounced I returned to my cell, which became a living hell for me. The thought of approaching death plagued me day and night. I still had a few weeks to live, then certain death, then: eternity!

    The more I tried to rid myself of the thought, the more it...More



    Wednesday, May 11, 2022

    Three consequences

    We glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance character; and character hope. Now hope does not disappoint.
    Romans 5:3-5.

    Three consequences
    The Lord Jesus has not promised us an easy life. We go through much tribulation that God has sent or permitted to test our faith.

    When it states” “We glory in tribulations”, it does not mean that the difficulties we experience bring us joy. That would not be rational. It rather signifies that we should rejoice over the positive effects that it has on our life.

    The apostle indicates three...More



    Tuesday, May 10, 2022

    Saved!

    It pleased God … to save those who believe.

    He (Jesus) is able to save to the uttermost those who come to God through him.

    1 Corinthians 1:21; Hebrews 7:25.

    Saved!
    If you are being swept away by a river in flood, you need someone to save you. If you find yourself in a building on fire without being able to escape, you need someone to save you. If you are in debt and cannot pay, you ask for aid. These examples are the type of deliverance that the Bible alludes to, when it states that God saves those who believe.

    What does Jesus save us from? He rescues us from the flood...More



    Monday, May 9, 2022

    I am (2)

    I am the bread of life. He who comes to me shall never hunger. … If anyone eats of this bread, he will live for ever.
    John 6:35.51.

    I am (2)
    Bread is proverbially the staff of life. In the figurative sense in which the Lord Jesus compares Himself with bread, He is more than a mere support. He is life itself. Having once tasted of Him, one never experiences hunger again. That does not simply mean that any appetite for other things, such as various forms of entertainment, is overcome. Hunger is satisfied once for all time, for this inexhaustible form of nourishment contains life instead of merely...More



    Sunday, May 8, 2022

    Thoughts on the Gospel of John (41)

    Jesus answered and said to them, I did one work, and you all marvel. Moses therefore gave you circumcision (not that it is from Moses, but from the fathers), and you circumcise a man on the Sabbath. If a man receives circumcision on the Sabbath, so that the law of Moses should not be broken, are you angry with me because I made a man completely well on the Sabbath? Do not judge according to appearance, but judge with righteous judgment.
    John 7:21-24.

    Thoughts on the Gospel of John (41)
    Let us again consider the situation in which Jesus found Himself here. He was concerned solely with being God’s...More



    Saturday, May 7, 2022

    Corporate worship

    On the first day of the week … the disciples came together to break bread.
    Acts 20:7.

    Corporate worship
    Do we gather together every Sunday, the Lord’s Day, to keep His feast of remembrance according to His wish? If so, can our hearts be unaffected when we consider that God the Father sent His only begotten Son to earth, giving Him into death, and that the Son came voluntarily to accomplish the great work of redemption amid all the suffering connected with it?

    Our hearts must surely wish to respond by praising and worshipping both Father and Son for their grace and mercy. The Holy...More



    Friday, May 6, 2022

    Although Carmen, a young lady, appeared to be healthy, she was...

    Seek the LORD, while he may be found, call upon him while he is near.

    Incline your ear, and come to me, hear, and your soul shall live.

    Isaiah 55:6.3.

    Although Carmen, a young lady, appeared to be healthy, she was desperately unhappy. She had been made aware that she was a sinner. She knew that, should she die, she would have to face God with her guilt. So for some time she lived with the fear of dying. A friend advised her to attend the concert of a famous musician to drive away her sombre thoughts. Although she had her doubts, she was finally persuaded and went.

    She hadn’t noted the...More



    Thursday, May 5, 2022

    Jesus Christ is “the Prince of life”; He said of...

    Knowing that Christ, having been raised from the dead, dies no more. Death no longer has dominion over him.
    Romans 6:9.

    Jesus Christ is “the Prince of life”; He said of Himself: “I am … the life” (Acts 3:15; John 14:6). There was a time when death had briefly “dominion” over Him. Jesus never merited death, which is the consequence of sin. As He never sinned, but was absolutely holy and righteous, He was, in contrast to all other human beings, not inevitably subject to death.

    So why was there a time when death had “dominion” over Him? It was because Jesus Himself voluntarily bore...More



    Wednesday, May 4, 2022

    “Saul! Saul!”

    Suddenly a great light from heaven shone around me. And I fell to the ground and heard a voice saying to me, Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me? So I answered, Who are you, Lord? And he said to me, I am Jesus of Nazareth, whom you are persecuting.
    Acts 22:6-8.

    “Saul! Saul!”
    The narrative: Young and full of ardour, Saul thought “he must do many things contrary to the name of Jesus of Nazareth” (Acts 26:9). He persecuted Christians to the point of having them killed. But when he went to Damascus to prosecute them, a dazzling light shone from heaven and he heard: “Saul, Saul, why are...More



    Tuesday, May 3, 2022

    The man sitting in front of me was one of the richest...

    To him who does not work but believes on him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is accounted for righteousness.
    Romans 4:5.

    The man sitting in front of me was one of the richest and best known persons in the district. He started the conversation by saying, “You are speaking to the greatest criminal in the town.” My spontaneous reply was, “Thank God!” He jumped up from his chair. “What? You are pleased that I am the greatest criminal?” – “No, no,” I calmed Him down, “but I am glad to be talking to someone who knows and admits that he is a sinner.”

    “Well,” he said, “so...More



    Monday, May 2, 2022

    I am (1)

    Jesus said to them, Most assuredly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I AM.
    John 8:58.

    I am (1)
    This verse was the concluding statement of the controversy with the Lord Jesus, in which the Jews denied His deity and heavenly origin. They recognised His words quoted from the Lord’s answer to Moses’ question as to his authorisation when He approached the children of Israel with the promise of deliverance from their bondage in Egypt: “I am that I am.” The Jews acknowledged Moses’ mission as God-given, but as soon as Jesus Christ asserted His deity, they showed their true condition of heart....More



    Sunday, May 1, 2022

    Thoughts on the Gospel of John (40)

    He who speaks from himself seeks his own glory; but he who seeks the glory of the one who sent him is true, and no unrighteousness is in him. Did not Moses give you the law, yet none of you keeps the law? Why do you seek to kill me? The people answered and said, You have a demon. Who is seeking to kill you?
    John 7:18-20.

    Thoughts on the Gospel of John (40)
    During the period of the Feast of Tabernacles Jesus’ teaching surprised the Jewish leaders. He had never been seen in the Pharisees’ schools. Jesus explained to them that He was One sent to propagate God’s doctrine.

    Couldn’t...More



    Saturday, April 30, 2022

    In many practical matters of life moderation or...

    Jesus said ..., I am the way, the truth, and the life. No-one comes to the Father except through me.
    John 14:6.

    In many practical matters of life moderation or “the golden mean” is advisable, and rightly so. However, there are issues in which any thought of taking a neutral position is out of the question. When it is a matter of eternal truths and the way to seek God, there are no alternatives. In Matthew 7 the Lord Jesus Christ speaks of

    a broad and a narrow way,
    a wide and a narrow gate,
    a bad and a good tree,
    a foolish and a wise man,
    a house built on sand and one built...More



    Friday, April 29, 2022

    He had never seen his mother’s face, neither the sun, nor...

    One thing I know, that though I was blind, now I see.
    John 9:25.

    He had never seen his mother’s face, neither the sun, nor a flower. He had never been able to cast a glance at himself or see his own face in a mirror, because he had been blind from birth.
    He earned his living by begging. When he reached home every evening, he couldn’t see how dirty he had become from the dust in the streets of Jerusalem.

    There he was again begging, when Jesus passed by. The blind man did not notice the Saviour looking at him. He did not realise that he was the centre of attention; then he felt clay being...More



    Thursday, April 28, 2022

    In the reports in the gospels we read of a young man who...

    The love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. ... But you ... flee these things.

    What profit is it to a man, if he gains the whole world and loses his own soul?

    1 Timothy 6:10.11; Matthew 16:26.

    In the reports in the gospels we read of a young man who was exceedingly rich and, at the same time, of an exemplary moral standing, which is not always the case. What then did he lack? The decisive thing: eternal life. There he was, standing before the One who could grant it, Jesus, the Son of God. He needed to take only a single step, but he didn’t do so; instead he went away sad (cf. Matthew...More



    Wednesday, April 27, 2022

    The Christians in Colosse were in grave danger of being...

    In him dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily.
    Colossians 2:9.

    The Christians in Colosse were in grave danger of being deceived by the influence of false teachers who sought to draw them away from the Lord. It was not so much a question of their giving up their faith in Christ as of placing other things alongside Him, such as philosophy (human wisdom), traditions (commandments and man’s doctrine) and other elements (worshipping angels). That would result in their losing sight of Him as the Head.
    God met this development by showing the Colossians through the apostle Paul the pre-eminence that the...More



    Tuesday, April 26, 2022

    In order to clarify the meaning of the gospel, the good news, the...

    I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes.
    Romans 1:16.

    In order to clarify the meaning of the gospel, the good news, the apostle Paul makes some significant statements about it right at the beginning of his epistle to the Romans. He calls it “the gospel of God”, and points out that God Himself is the author or the source of this good news. And since it is about the message of His Son, Jesus Christ, it is also called “the gospel of his Son” (v. 9).

    The main subject and central point of the gospel is the Son of God, the Lord...More



    Monday, April 25, 2022

    No-one had expected that! The manager, up to then so...

    O king, let my advice be acceptable to you; break off your sins.
    Daniel 4:27.

    No-one had expected that! The manager, up to then so influential and successful, had fallen from grace through some dubious business and was dismissed from the firm from one day to the next. “The time after that was dreadful,” he said. “I should not like to experience the first six to eight weeks again.” That he was suddenly without a secretary and a chauffeur was the least of his troubles.

    Others before him have fared much worse. Powerful rulers have lost all their possessions and had to eke out an existence by...More



    Sunday, April 24, 2022

    Thoughts on the Gospel of John (39)

    Now about the middle of the feast Jesus went up into the temple and taught. And the Jews marvelled, saying, How does this man know letters, having never learned? Jesus answered them and said, My doctrine is not mine, but his who sent me. If anyone wills to do his will, he shall know concerning the doctrine, whether it is from God or whether I speak on my own authority.
    John 7:14-17.

    Thoughts on the Gospel of John (39)
    The Feast of Tabernacles lasted seven days (Leviticus 23:34). Halfway through Jesus entered the temple area to teach the people. It was not to obtain public recognition, nor to catch...More



    Saturday, April 23, 2022

    An angel announced the name that the Son of God should...

    You shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.
    Matthew 1:21.

    An angel announced the name that the Son of God should bear on earth long before His birth: Jesus. The name itself reveals God’s wondrous plan, for Jesus means: the Lord is salvation.” That was precisely the point of His coming into the world. So God became Man in the Person of Jesus. He wished to “save his people from their sins”.

    In the first place Christ came to His earthly people Israel, who had strayed far from God. Did they even know that they were His people, the people of the living God? By no...More



    Friday, April 22, 2022

    During the reign of terror of the Red Khmer in Cambodia...

    God may speak in one way, or in another, yet man does not perceive it.

    God has spoken once, twice I have heard this: that power belongs to God.

    Today, if you will hear his voice, do not harden your hearts
    .
    Job 33:14; Psalm 62:11; Hebrews 3:7.

    During the reign of terror of the Red Khmer in Cambodia Song had to flee to Thailand to escape genocide. Of the twenty-five companions on the dangerous road to exile only seven reached their destination after surviving the most difficult conditions. All the others died or were killed on the journey.

    Song then spent four years in a refugee...More



    Thursday, April 21, 2022

    In John 19, vv. 1-16 we see Jesus Christ at His trial before the...

    Pilate then went out again, and said to them, Behold, I am bringing him out to you, that you may know that I find no fault in him....Then he delivered him to them to be crucified.
    John 19:4.16.

    In John 19, vv. 1-16 we see Jesus Christ at His trial before the Roman governor Pilate.

    The atmosphere is hostile towards the accused. In the course of the proceedings Pilate repeatedly stated that Jesus was innocent (cf. John 18:38; 19:4.6). But it was all to no avail. It became clearer and clearer that the accusers, the religious leadership of Israel, wanted to be rid of this troublesome Man. They put...More



    Wednesday, April 20, 2022

    The tribe of the Levites had a privileged place among the...

    The Levites...shall carry the tabernacle and all its furnishings; they shall attend to it and camp around the tabernacle.
    Numbers 1:50.

    The tribe of the Levites had a privileged place among the people of God. God had sanctified them for Himself. Their assignment stood in connection with the tabernacle, God’s dwelling among His people. This tent, which could be dismantled, had to accompany the people on their wilderness journey. One of the most important tasks of the Levites was to carry the tabernacle and its furnishings.

    All that is written in the Old Testament is intended as an example for our...More



    Tuesday, April 19, 2022

    The trial of the Lord Jesus Christ revealed irregular...

    Again the high priest asked him, saying to him, Are you the Christ, the Son of the Blessed? Jesus said, I am.
    Mark 14:61.62.

    The trial of the Lord Jesus Christ revealed irregular legal proceedings indeed! The religious leaders try the case against the innocent One during the night, and the sentence of death has already been decided. Only the reason for the verdict has to be found. Enough witnesses appear, but that was insufficient for the verdict, as they contradicted one another. For all their astute argumentation, probably discussed beforehand, God did not allow His Son to be declared guilty for...More



    Monday, April 18, 2022

    The Egyptain pyramids are famous because the mummified corpses of...

    He said to them, Do not be alarmed. You seek Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified. He is risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid him.
    Mark 16:6.

    The Egyptain pyramids are famous because the mummified corpses of the Pharaohs are there. In London Westminster Abbey is famous because the mortal remains of English monarchs and many other respected persons rest there. Mohammed’s grave is revered because of the stone coffin and the bones it contains. The well-known heroic burial place, Arlington Cemetery in Washington is famous as the resting-place of many prominent Americans.

    Between all...More



    Sunday, April 17, 2022

    God raised Christ from among the dead! Holy Scripture witnesses this...

    Jesus of Nazareth ... whom God raised up, having loosed the pains of death, because it was not possible that he should be held by it.
    Acts 2:22.24.

    God raised Christ from among the dead! Holy Scripture witnesses this fact just as clearly as it emphasises painstakingly elsewhere that Jesus Himself rose again in the power of an endless life (cf. John 2:19, 10:18; Hebrews 7:16).

    This second aspect is connected with His being the Son of God (Romans 1:4), while the former truth stresses His perfect manhood. So Peter, too, here speaks of the Man Christ Jesus, the Man whom the Jews had “taken by lawless...More



    Saturday, April 16, 2022

    Normally people are reticent to speak derisively of the...

    The chief priests also, mocking among themselves with the scribes, said, He saved others; himself he cannot save.
    Mark 15:31.

    Normally people are reticent to speak derisively of the dead; their natural feelings hinder them. But when Jesus Christ, the Son of God, suffered agonizing pains while hanging on the cross, He was a target for man’s contempt.

    It was not only the soldiers and the common people who scorned Him there, but, above all, the leaders of His people, too. They had seen how He had saved others, yet they refused to accept that He had performed those miracles with divine authority and...More



    Friday, April 15, 2022

    It was a shameful place where the Lord Jesus sacrificed...

    When Jesus had cried out with a loud voice, He said, Father, into your hands I commend my spirit. Having said this, he breathed his last.
    Luke 23:46.

    It was a shameful place where the Lord Jesus sacrificed His life: on the cross between two criminals. People had taken Him there, yet He had gone voluntarily. They had wanted to kill Him more than once, but He had passed through their midst.

    Now His hour had come. Of His own accord, He took our place in the judgment of God. He did not die like the criminals who breathed their last amid the cruel ill-treatment of the Roman soldiers. He had refused the...More



    Thursday, April 14, 2022

    At first sight one might think that there is no connection between...

    He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds. He counts the number of the stars; he calls them all by name.
    Psalm 147:3.4.

    At first sight one might think that there is no connection between these two verses. However, it is the very order of these verses that gives us courage. We might think that we were of no significance for God among the milllions of people. Yet He reminds us that He knows each one of the much greater number of the stars.

    Dear reader, you are not only of statistical importance for God: He not only knows your name, but also the innermost state of your soul, which no-one in...More



    Wednesday, April 13, 2022

    Who can imagine himself in Joseph’s situation here! Though...

    Joseph’s master took him and put him into the prison, ... where the king’s prisoners were confined.
    Genesis 39:20.

    Who can imagine himself in Joseph’s situation here! Though innocent, Joseph was condemned on the ground of a base lie. This must be one of the hardest trials to bear. Yet we read of no word by which he sought to justify himself. His life was in the hand of God who never errs in His leading and whose word eventually “tested him” (Psalm 105:19). Joseph never lost sight of this fact.
    Peter wrote (1 Peter 2:19.20): “This is commendable, if because of conscience toward God, one...More



    Tuesday, April 12, 2022

    In the 1980’s several French journalists and diplomats were...

    Who is God, except the LORD? And who is a rock, except our God?
    Psalm 18:31.

    In the 1980’s several French journalists and diplomats were hostages for several months or even years. They lived in extremely difficult conditions. Some of them tell of their spiritual experiences during this long imprisonment.
    Roger Auques states: “The kidnappers allowed me to keep my Bible. ... My time as a hostage was necessary to make me think about God again. God is a rock, as it says in the psalms.”

    Marcel Carton reports: “I don’t know how many times I read the same novels, but also and especially the...More



    Monday, April 11, 2022

    The eternal God, the Creator of heaven and earth has...

    All scripture is given by inspiration of God.

    Prophecy never came by the will of man, but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit.

    2 Timothy 3:16; 2 Peter 1:21.

    The eternal God, the Creator of heaven and earth has revealed Himself to mankind. In creation itself His eternal power and Godhead can be clearly seen (Romans 1:21).

    In addition, God has made His presence known again and again in the course of world history by His sayings and actions, particularly in connection with His earthly people.

    However, we see the greatest revelation of God in His Son, Jesus...More



    Sunday, April 10, 2022

    Thoughts on the Gospel of John (38)

    When his brothers had gone up, then he also went up to the feast, not openly, but as it were in secret. Then the Jews sought him at the feast and said, Where is he? And there was much complaining among the people concerning him. Some said, He is good; others said, No, on the contrary, he deceives the people. However, no-one spoke openly of him for fear of the Jews.
    John 7:10-13.

    Thoughts on the Gospel of John (38)
    Hadn’t Jesus told His brothers, “I am not yet going up to this feast”, when they suggested that He should go to Jerusalem? Indeed He had. And He went nevertheless. We should not,...More



    Saturday, April 9, 2022

    Harold Hestekind, a missionary in China, was cycling down a...

    We know that all things work together for good to those who love God.
    Romans 8:28.

    Harold Hestekind, a missionary in China, was cycling down a street in Shanghai. His wife was following him. Suddenly she cried out, “Harold!” He looked round and saw that she had been knocked down and had fallen under a bus. Harold could only pray, “O God, stop the wheels!” And the bus stopped with the rear wheels directly behind his wife. Some policemen ran up and took down the details of the accident.

    Mrs Hestekind was taken to hospital where they discovered that she had a severe, but not life-threatening...More



    Friday, April 8, 2022

    Many people who have come to the Lord Jesus Christ cannot...

    Most assuredly I say to you, he who hears my word and believes in him who sent me has everlasting life, and shall not come into judgment, but has passed from death into life.
    John 5:24.

    Many people who have come to the Lord Jesus Christ cannot rid themselves of the doubt whether they might not be lost again. They do not dare to respond with a definite “No!” They think of their weak faith in everyday life, their failures and wrongdoings; then doubts arise as to whether eternal life can never be lost.
    Now the Bible states in Romans 11:29: “The gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable.” God will...More



    Thursday, April 7, 2022

    Stephen, a small African boy, was seven years old when...

    When my father and my mother forsake me, then the LORD will take care of me.
    Psalm 27:10.

    Stephen, a small African boy, was seven years old when his mother left him. Her son soon lived on the streets. He satisfied his hunger from white people’s waste bins and slept under a bridge. At the age of fourteen he joined a violent gang and later a Marxist organisation that sought to liberate the land and gave him the task of causing unrest among the population of his town.

    On the edge of the town a tent mission was taking place. Armed with petrol bombs Stephen, now 19 years old, mixed in with those...More



    Wednesday, April 6, 2022

    The Lord Jesus had spent a troublesome night. One of...

    They ... put a scarlet robe on him. When they had twisted a crown of thorns, they put it on his head.
    Matthew 27:28.29.

    The Lord Jesus had spent a troublesome night. One of His disciples had betrayed Him, another had denied Him. More than once the high priests had interrogated Him before the Sanhedrin (the Jews’ council), then finally pronounced His death sentence. Then daybreak came.

    In order to prevail with their plan of having Jesus killed, they took Him to Pilate, for the sentence could not be carried out without the Roman governor’s consent. He had to pass judgment. Although convinced of...More



    Tuesday, April 5, 2022

    David had felt God’s nearness and preservation both in...

    He restores my soul.
    Psalm 23:3

    David had felt God’s nearness and preservation both in good and bad times, especially when he was in great danger. However, his faith was not always so strong that he could endure difficulties without sensing defeat. Occasionally he became despondent when fleeing from king Saul; he did not put absolute trust in God.

    David once said that he would one day suffer death at the hands of Saul, even if God had anointed him king. Discouraged, he and his 600 faithful followers fled to the Philistines, the enemies of the people of God, and there led a life of deceit and...More



    Monday, April 4, 2022

    Many people have indeed forgotten God. They...

    Consider this, you who forget God, lest I tear you in pieces, and there be none to deliver.
    Psalm 50:22.

    Many people have indeed forgotten God. They no longer reckon with Him, nor do they want to know anything about Him. But God is there. He inquires after His creatures; He is not indifferent as to their fate. He does not want them to fall a victim to judgment without any hope of salvation, which must confront all who ignore Him.
    We can already see the consequences of this conscious rejection of God: “Even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a debased mind, to...More



    Sunday, April 3, 2022

    Thoughts on the Gospel of John (37)

    Then Jesus said to them, My time has not yet come, but your time is always ready. The world cannot hate you, but it hates me because I testify of it that its works are evil. You go up to this feast. I am not yet going up to this feast, for my time has not yet fully come. When he had said these things to them, he remained in Galilee.
    John 7:6-9.

    Thoughts on the Gospel of John (37)
    Jesus’ brothers had told Him to go to Jerusalem to give proof of His supernatural abilities. He should win everyone over to Himself and liberate the people from the Romans.

    “My time has not yet come”, the...More



    Saturday, April 2, 2022

    In the 19th century the pioneer missionary, Robert...

    We ourselves were also once foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving various lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful and hating one another. But when the kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man appeared, not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit.
    Titus 3:3-5.

    In the 19th century the pioneer missionary, Robert Moffat, lived among the Bantu peoples for five decades by the Orange River. His abilities as a farmer, gardener, carpenter and smith helped him to make contact with...More



    Friday, April 1, 2022

    Today’s verse from the Bible comes from one of...

    Friend, how did you come in here without a wedding garment? And he was speechless.
    Matthew 22:12.

    Today’s verse from the Bible comes from one of the parables that the Lord Jesus Christ told so as to explain clearly to His listeners things not easily envisaged. The issue here is: what condition must be fulfilled for someone to spend eternity in God’s presence in heaven?
    A king wished to give a wedding feast for his son. Special guests were invited, but despite being asked twice to attend, they did not come. Their daily routine was more important. So they disdained the privilege.

    Now the...More



    Thursday, March 31, 2022

    The end of the world

    The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.
    2 Peter 3:9.

    The end of the world
    Many scientists agree that the beginning of our universe was a kind of gigantic explosion. Others have come to the conclusion that if there was a sudden start, there will probably be a sudden end, too.

    We do not need complex scientific calculations to confirm the declarations of the Creator Himself. We read in the first verse of the Bible: “In the beginning God created the...More



    Wednesday, March 30, 2022

    True greatness

    Our Lord Jesus Christ, … though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, that you through his poverty might become rich.

    The Son of God … loved me and gave himself for me.

    2 Corinthians 8:9; Galatians 2:20.

    True greatness
    Some years ago a humanitarian charity made contact with a former president of the United States, requesting that he should undertake certain responsibilities for them. He accepted their offer, but to their surprise stated that he would prefer manual work to an important post on the committee. That man, who had governed one of the biggest countries in the...More



    Tuesday, March 29, 2022

    Two or three years of my life

    None of these things move me; nor do I count my life dear to myself, so that I may finish my race with joy, and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God.

    Christ … has loved us and given himself for us.

    Acts 20:24; Ephesians 5:2.

    Two or three years of my life
    In June 2012 an Italian footballer declared: “I would willingly give two or three years of my life for a place in the final of the European Cup.” The passion for the game and perhaps the personal glory that he might get from it dominated his whole life.

    Such an...More



    Monday, March 28, 2022

    God’s plan

    Through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin.

    Our Saviour Jesus Christ … has abolished death and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel.

    Romans 5:12; 2 Timothy 1:10.

    God’s plan
    Countless people do not believe in God. Others believe only in a “God of love” who would not interfere with people’s lives. However, God does not want us to have a vague idea of Him, for He has plans for us, and for each one in particular. Certain people suppose that the end of life is “going to heaven” but their knowledge about it goes no further.

    To...More



    Sunday, March 27, 2022

    Thoughts on the Gospel of John (36)

    Now the Jews’ feast of tabernacles was at hand. His brothers therefore said to him, Depart from here and go into Judea, that your disciples also may see the works that you are doing. For no-one does anything in secret while he himself seeks to be known openly. If you do these things, show yourself to the world. For even his brothers did not believe in him.
    John 7:2-5.

    Thoughts on the Gospel of John (36)
    There were three great annual feasts in Israel: the Passover, the Feast of Weeks and the Feast of Tabernacles, which was the last in the Jewish year. During this joyful feast Israelites dwelt in...More



    Saturday, March 26, 2022

    In dire trouble

    About the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? That is, My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?
    Matthew 27:46.

    In dire trouble
    On the cross of Calvary Jesus Christ suffered excruciating pains. For three hours He had suffered under the scornful eyes and contemptuous calls of a crowd of curious onlookers.

    At twelve o’clock midday the sun darkened. Three further horrific hours followed. No-one dared to utter a word. During this period of time God poured out His judgment on His own Son, who “bore our sins in his own body on the tree” (1...More



    Friday, March 25, 2022

    The son I lost

    God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have everlasting life.

    He who did not spare his own Son but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?

    John 3:16; Romans 8:32.

    The son I lost
    There were two trials in court that morning: first of all a thick, incriminating dossier on an accident that cost the life of a 23-year-old young man. Then a young delinquent of the age of 23, a habitual thief, was brought before the judge. He explained that he had been brought up in a home for...More



    Thursday, March 24, 2022

    Have you forgotten Him?

    My son, give attention to my words, incline your ear to my sayings. … Keep them in the midst of you heart; for they are life to those who find them.
    Proverbs 4:20-22.

    Have you forgotten Him?
    Stop complaining! God has created a wonderful, varied world with sun and snow, the sea for your sense of adventure, the desert for your understanding of immensity and the trees and flowers for their beauty. What do you make of these things?

    He has given you simple advice for leading your life: “Do not steal; do not kill; honour your father and mother.” Have you kept it?

    He promises...More



    Wednesday, March 23, 2022

    Christ in the place of honour

    He put all things under his feet, and gave him to be head over all things to the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills all in all.
    Ephesians 1:22.23.

    Christ in the place of honour
    With the work of redemption accomplished, God raised the Lord Jesus up from among the dead, received Him in heaven and accorded Him the place at His right hand. There God had set Him in the highest possible position: Christ stands, as a Man, over the mighty angels in heaven and over all human beings on earth.

    His pre-eminence will be visible to all in the future, when the Lord Jesus appears...More



    Tuesday, March 22, 2022

    A slip of paper

    The scripture says, Whoever believes on him will not be put to shame.
    Romans 10:11.

    A slip of paper
    A man once said to a Christian who was doing pastoral work, “I refuse to believe in Jesus Christ, because I have been cheated in financial affairs by someone who called himself a Christian.” – “Is that the only reason?” the pastor asked. “Yes!” The other retorted. – “Then I suggest that we take that down in writing.” He took out his notebook and wrote: “The reason why I am not a Christian is that someone who claimed to be a Christian robbed me out of some money.” He tore the...More



    Monday, March 21, 2022

    The great choice

    See, I have set before you today life and good, death and evil. … I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing; therefore choose life.
    Deuteronomy 30:15.19.

    The great choice
    Life involves an uninterrupted succession of choices to make. They may have to do with the present or the future, merely concerning insignificant daily problems or, on the contrary, they may extend over our whole life and, what is extremely earnest, our eternal future.

    If you do not know God, you resemble a traveller who has reached a road junction. There are two roads before you to choose from....More



    Sunday, March 20, 2022

    Thoughts on the Gospel of John (35)

    Jesus answered them, Did I not choose you, the twelve, and one of you is a devil? He spoke of Judas Iscariot, the son of Simon, for it was he who would betray him, being one of the twelve. After these things Jesus walked in Galilee, for he did not want to walk in Judea, because the Jews sought to kill him.
    John 6:70-7:1.

    Thoughts on the Gospel of John (35)
    How the Lord Jesus must have rejoiced when His disciples told Him that they intended to stand by Him! They said: “We have come to believe and know that you are the Christ”, the Holy One of God (v. 69). Yet they had to remember that it was...More



    Saturday, March 19, 2022

    Pharisees and Herodians on the same course – what a...

    Some of the Pharisees and the Herodians … said to him, Teacher, we know that you are true, and care about no-one; for you do not regard the person of men, but teach the way of God in truth.
    Mark 12:13.14.

    Pharisees and Herodians on the same course – what a remarkable coalition! The Pharisees were zealous about the law of Moses and the religious Jews’ traditions that had been added over the centuries, whereas the Herodians were probably officials of the tetrarch Herod Antipas, who ruled over Galilee.

    Now a legation of both groups was on a common mission. Before they came out with their...More



    Friday, March 18, 2022

    A pointed sermon

    Therefore you are inexcusable, o man, whoever you are who judge, for in whatever you judge another you condemn yourself; for you who judge practise the same things.
    Romans 2:1.

    A pointed sermon
    “I enjoyed your sermon yesterday,” a farmer said, when the pastor visited him. “But there was only one thing: I wish that you had preached even more pointedly. But please don’t take offence.”

    “No, indeed! Perhaps the sermon could have been more pointed.” – “Yes, especially when you spoke about conversion and greed. You wouldn’t believe what skinflints we have in the...More



    Thursday, March 17, 2022

    The decision that the leaders of the Jews had to make...

    The governor answered and said to them, Which of the two do you want me to release to you? They said, Barabbas.
    Matthew 27:21.

    The decision that the leaders of the Jews had to make would have great consequences: Jesus or Barabbas? Barabbas was a terrorist, a robber who had participated in a revolt and committed murder in it, too. The Romans made short work of robbers and rebels: it meant death by crucifixion. So Barabbas would land in prison and face execution.

    Jesus Christ had been condemned to death by the highest court of the Jews for calling Himself the Son of God. Wasn’t He the Son of God? Hadn’t...More



    Wednesday, March 16, 2022

    Now and afterwards

    No chastening seems to be joyful for the present, but painful; nevertheless, afterward it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.
    Hebrews 12:11.

    Now and afterwards
    In Hebrews 12 the educational dealings by God, our heavenly Father, with believers are compared with the upbringing of children by their natural father. But there is one fundamental difference: our God and Father always acts perfectly, whereas earthly fathers can err considerably.

    We do, however, recognise one parallel: in both cases the form of correction causes no joy at the time....More



    Tuesday, March 15, 2022

    Why believe the Bible? (2)

    The word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit.
    Hebrews 4:12.

    Why believe the Bible? (2)
    When we received Jesus Christ into our life as Saviour and Lord, we knew something of the content and message of the Bible. It was not logical proof that made us believe at the time. Having felt the sharpness of the blade, one does not need a formal proof that a sword is really a sword. Nor is it necessary for anyone standing in bright sunlight to ascertain that the sun really exists.

    The message of the Bible affected...More



    Monday, March 14, 2022

    Why believe the Bible? (1)

    I call to remembrance the genuine faith that is in you, which dwelt first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice, and I am persuaded is in you also.

    From childhood you have known the holy scriptures which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.

    2 Timothy 1:5; 3:15.

    Why believe the Bible? (1)
    Some of our readers may wonder why so many Christians believe the Bible absolutely. Other religions and philosophies of life also have ancient traditions. There are various answers to this question.

    Some Christians have had a similar...More



    Sunday, March 13, 2022

    Thoughts on the Gospel of John (34)

    From that time many of his disciples went back and walked with him no more. Then Jesus said to the twelve, Do you also want to go away? But Simon Peter answered him, Lord, you have the words of eternal life. Also we have come to believe and know that you are the Christ, the Son of the living God (or: the Holy One of God J.N.D.).
    John 6:66-69.

    Thoughts on the Gospel of John (34)
    Many people had followed Jesus. They had tasted His goodness and wanted to experience more. But when Jesus stated that the natural man by himself can achieve nothing that will please God, they turned away disappointed. It...More



    Saturday, March 12, 2022

    Victim or victor in temptation?

    Each one is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desires and enticed. Then when desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin, and sin, when it is full-grown, brings forth death.
    James 1:14.15.

    Victim or victor in temptation?
    The Irish author, Oscar Wilde, once wrote: “I can resist anything – except temptation.” It is a sentence full of irony and self-criticism, but it expresses the truth, and not only for himself!

    Since the first human couple transgressed God’s commandment, everyone has the inclination to do wrong and evil in himself. That is fatal: when a temptation affects...More



    Friday, March 11, 2022

    A missionary in Africa made a great effort to convert...

    Rejoice in the Lord, always. Again I will say, rejoice!
    Philippians 4:4.

    A missionary in Africa made a great effort to convert an elderly tribal chief to Christianity. However, the preacher did not know his Bible too well. In his opinion the Christian dogma of faith consisted to a great extent in prohibitions that he endeavoured to put across to the aged chief.
    The old man listened patiently. Finally he said, “You are telling me that I must not take my neighbour’s wife.” – “Right!” said the missionary. – “Nor his ivory, nor his oxen?”- “Quite right.” – “And I mustn’t do a war...More



    Thursday, March 10, 2022

    What distinguishes a Christian?

    The disciples were first called Christians in Antioch.
    Acts 11:26.

    What distinguishes a Christian?
    Christians, as the Word of God describes them, are disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ, i.e. people who follow Christ and reflect His essential characteristics.
    A Christian is someone who has made a radical change in his life: formerly he led his life without God according to his own mind. Now, however, he knows Jesus Christ as His Saviour and Lord; he likes to hear His voice and follows Him (Ephesians 2:1-13; John 10:27).
    A Christian has the forgiveness of his sins (Ephesians...More



    Wednesday, March 9, 2022

    For whom did Christ give Himself?

    Christ … has loved us and given himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God.

    Christ … loved the church and gave himself for her.

    The Son of God … loved me and gave himself for me.

    Ephesians 5:2.25; Galatians 2:20.

    For whom did Christ give Himself?
    In the three verses above we read that Christ “gave Himself”, i.e. He gave Himself, body and soul, voluntarily, going as far as the supreme sacrifice, His death on the cross.

    “Christ … has given Himself for us, an offering and sacrifice to God.” God wished to save the sinners that we were, and Jesus...More



Tuesday, March 8, 2022

It sounded as though the young lady was reciting...

Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.
Acts 4:12.

It sounded as though the young lady was reciting the recipe for a cake: she believed in some of the Sermon on the Mount, and in some words from the Koran, and also in reincarnation. That summed up her individual faith. She said she had an easy conscience and gave us the impression that she was content.

Is being content with our own thought-out faith sufficient? Isn’t it more important what God thinks of it? Can such a mixture give security in sickness and death? Such...More



Monday, March 7, 2022

A victim of thieves

Jesus … said, A certain man went down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell among thieves, who stripped him of his clothing, wounded him, and departed, leaving him half dead.
Luke 10:30.

A victim of thieves
The world is God’s creation. However, since the majority of people will not serve God, they have become dependent on Satan. Jesus Christ calls this great adversary “the ruler of this world” (John 12:13). So we need not be surprised, if we “fall among thieves”, as it were, in the world and suffer harm.

We mean primarily harm in our soul. This could be harm that we ourselves...More



Sunday, March 6, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (33)

The words that I speak to you are spirit, and they are life. But there are some of you who do not believe. For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were who did not believe, and who would betray him. And he said, Therefore I have said to you that no one can come to me unless it has been granted to him by my Father.
John 6:63-65.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (33)
“This is a hard saying!” was the complaint of the people who had first been attracted to Jesus, because His miracles impressed them. However, the Lord pointed out the divine origin of His words: They are “spirit and they are...More



Saturday, March 5, 2022

From Buddhism to Christ (2)

Give me your heart.

If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.

Proverbs 23:26; 2 Corinthians 5:17.

From Buddhism to Christ (2)
Sarah’s report continued: “From that day on I regularly attended those meetings of young Christians. I wanted to learn more of this God, who seemed to know me so well. I was astonished to discover that this God takes the first step towards the one suffering, whereas in Buddhism the people have to go to Buddha. Then I also recognised that Jesus died for me on the cross to save me from my...More



Friday, March 4, 2022

“God, if you exist … ” (1)

See, o LORD, that I am in distress; … my heart is overturned within me, for I have been very rebellious.

You drew near on the day I called on you, and said, Do not fear!

Lamentations 1:20; 3:57.

“God, if you exist … ” (1)
This was Sarah’s report: “I was brought up as a Buddhist, but was never convinced of that religion. My mother and I once took part in a Buddhist festival. The people there gave an impression of contentment as they repeated their mantras, whereas I was dreadfully bored. When the time came for blossoms to be strewn before the Buddha, I asked my mother, “Why...More



Thursday, March 3, 2022

Has it ever been your experience that you wanted to...

He … immediately got into the boat with his disciples and came to the region of Dalmanutha. Then the Pharisees came out and began to dispute with him, seeking from him a sign from heaven, testing him.
Mark 8:10.11.

Has it ever been your experience that you wanted to assist someone, and your help was shamefully refused? When the Lord Jesus Christ visited the towns on the Lake of Gennesareth, He healed the sick and suffering. At the same time His sayings and preaching gave His listeners practical help for their life, in particular spiritual light for the uncertain and seekers. Such a visitor should have been...More



Wednesday, March 2, 2022

Acting without the Lord’s leading

Simon Peter said to them, I am going fishing. They said to him, We are going with you also. They went out and immediately got into the boat, and that night they caught nothing.
John 21:3.

Acting without the Lord’s leading
Seven disciples set out to fish on the lake. The Lord had not instructed them to do so. They were acting on Peter’s initiative. Although some of them were experienced fishermen, their expedition proved a miserable failure: “they caught nothing”. When they returned to dry land in the early morning, Jesus was standing on the shore. He asked them, “Children, have you any...More



Tuesday, March 1, 2022

In the parable of the sower that Jesus Christ told...

A sower went out to sow, and as he sowed, some seed fell by the wayside, and the birds came and devoured them. Some fell on stony places where they did not have much earth; and they immediately sprang up because they had no depth of earth. But when the sun was up they were scorched, and because they had no root, they withered away.
Matthew 13:3-6.

In the parable of the sower that Jesus Christ told the seed falls on four different types of soil. The seed itself is an illustration of the Word of God, while the pathway on which some seed fell stands for a hard heart that the Word fails to...More



Monday, February 28, 2022

You are well worth it!

Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us.

We do not present our supplications before you because of our righteous deeds, but because of your great mercies.

Titus 3:5; Daniel 9:18.

You are well worth it!
This title has been taken from an advertisement for a cosmetic product. It proved very successful and one might wonder why. Could it be that it flatters the good opinion that everyone who reads it has of himself or herself?

What are we really worth? God created every human being in His image according to His likeness (Genesis...More



Sunday, February 27, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (32)

Many of his disciples, when they heard this, said, This is a hard saying; who can understand it? When Jesus knew in himself that his disciples complained about this, he said to them, Does this offend you? What then if you should see the Son of man ascend where he was before? It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing.
John 6:60-63.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (32)
The Lord’s remarkable instruction had a heart-searching, challenging effect on the multitude (v. 36), on the Jewish leaders (vv. 41.42.52) and even on His disciples (vv. 60:61), some of whom were offended. His...More



Saturday, February 26, 2022

Saying yes or no to God

Through this man (Jesus Christ) is preached to you the forgiveness of sins; … by him everyone who believes is justified.
Acts 13:38.39.

Saying yes or no to God
By crucifying Jesus, men showed the wickedness in their hearts, but at the same time God manifested His love toward us in passing the judgment that we deserved on His Son.

Because Jesus Christ sacrificed His life for us, God forgives us and grants us eternal life. It is a gift that those who believe in Him accept joyfully.

But human beings are capable of and responsible for saying yes or no to God. If anyone wilfully...More



Friday, February 25, 2022

Which way?

Jesus said to him, I am the way, the truth, and the life. No-one comes to the Father except through me.
John 14:6.

Which way?
In a square in a large European city a stranger asked a passer-by, “Can you tell me how far it is from here to the main station?” The answer he received was: “If you continue on the way you are going at the moment, it is about 25,000 miles. But if you turn round and go in the opposite direction, you’ll be there in five minutes.”

This amusing incident should make us think of our own life’s journey. We could be in the same situation as the tourist in...More



Thursday, February 24, 2022

Reconciliation with the God of peace

If when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of his Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.

Be reconciled to God.

Romans 5:10; 2 Corinthians 5:20.

Reconciliation with the God of peace
Two friends are arguing. Their previously good relationship is becoming tense, on the point of breaking up. They stop speaking to each other: communication has become too difficult. Gradually these friends become strangers to one another. Such an outcome can be avoided solely by reconciliation. Then friendship and harmony are...More



Wednesday, February 23, 2022

Torn between numerous demands in the family, their profession and...

They (two of Jesus’ disciples) said to one another, Did not our heart burn within us while he talked with us on the road, and while he opened the Scriptures to us?
Luke 24:32.

Torn between numerous demands in the family, their profession and social life, people have difficulty in maintaining their balance. Believers are also faced with this problem. With more and more to be accomplished every day, the number of hours is insufficient. Don’t we often say, “I haven’t the time!”? However, in order to live as true Christians, we need to be always prepared to listen to our God and Father without being...More



Tuesday, February 22, 2022

Too proud for the Saviour

As he (Jesus) drew near, he saw the city and wept over it, saying, If you had known, even you, especially in this your day, the things that make for your peace.
Luke 19:41.42.

Too proud for the Saviour
Jesus Christ wept over the city of Jerusalem. Why? Because its inhabitants refused to acknowledge that He had come to them with the one purpose of truly helping them. In another place He laments: “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the one who kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were...More



Monday, February 21, 2022

Excuses for ignoring the Bible

The message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.
1 Corinthians 1:18.

Excuses for ignoring the Bible
“I don’t understand what I read.”

Certain passages of the Bible may seem difficult to understand, being complicated or too abstract. The evangelist Spurgeon said: “It is wonderful to see how a text from the Bible that is hard like stone gives off sparks when struck by the steel of prayer.” Before reading, ask God, who inspired the text, to give you understanding.

“Religion...More



Sunday, February 20, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (31)

He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood abides in me, and I in him. As the living Father sent me, and I live because of the Father, so he who feeds on me will live because of me. This is the bread which came down from heaven – not as your fathers ate the manna, and are dead. He who eats this bread will live for ever. These things he said in the synagogue as he taught in Capernaum.
John 6:56-59.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (31)
Some of the succeeding statements in verses 50 to 58 seem to be a repetition of the same subject, because they sound so similar. Whoever examines them more closely,...More



Saturday, February 19, 2022

Through a magnifying glass

When that which is perfect has come, then that which is in part will be done away. … Now we see … dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I also am known.
1 Corinthians 13:10.12.

Through a magnifying glass
I was admiring a large painting in a museum, when a small boy came along and, for a joke, started looking at the picture through a magnifying glass. I asked him to describe the picture for me. He took his magnifying glass and started listing many details. Here was a bunch of flowers, there sat a robin etc. In this way the boy saw nothing but tiny...More



Friday, February 18, 2022

”Jesus, have mercy on me!” (6)

Then Jesus said to him, Go your way; your faith has made you well. And immediately he received his sight and followed Jesus on the road.
Mark 10:52.; (concluded)

”Jesus, have mercy on me!” (6)
Bartimæus had come across to the Lord Jesus in faith. Once he had expressed his need, the Lord was ready to assure him that his wish had been granted. “Go your way; your faith has made you well.” Bartimæus was healed: he could now see.

The healing of this blind man is an illustration of how Jesus Christ is still prepared to heal people of spiritual blindness, i.e. blindness regarding God...More



Thursday, February 17, 2022

The inhabitants of the island of Nias, near Sumatra, were...

The people who sat in darkness have seen a great light, and upon those who sat in the region and shadow of death light has dawned.
Matthew 4:16.

The inhabitants of the island of Nias, near Sumatra, were formerly head-hunters. One islander reported what the gospel of Jesus Christ had brought about among his people:

“Until the gospel came to us, we resembled people stuck in a swamp and sinking deeper and deeper; we were being ruined, body and soul. Our vice corrupted us, and our constant fear of evil spirits and the horror of death was wearing us down.

Then we heard the good news of...More



Wednesday, February 16, 2022

The mystery of godliness (7)

Without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifested in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen by angels, preached among the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up in glory.
1 Timothy 3:16.

The mystery of godliness (7)
The mystery of godliness ends with the statement that Christ was received in heaven in glory. It is the climax of the description of the Lord’s piety and of great significance for a godly life.

The words “received up” in the New Testament frequently describe Jesus’ ascension (e.g. Mark 16:19; Acts 1:2). His ascension was no...More



Tuesday, February 15, 2022

“Jesus, have mercy on me!” (5)

Jesus answered and said to him, What do you want me to do for you? The blind man said to him, Rabboni, that I may receive my sight.
Mark 10:51.

“Jesus, have mercy on me!” (5)
Bartimæus was now standing in front of Jesus, waiting for the Saviour’s response to his call. Jesus had heard him and had him brought before Him. The blind man now had to wait and see how He would react to his plea for his sight.

Jesus did not heal him immediately. Bartimæus had asked for mercy. The Lord Jesus wanted him to be more specific despite His knowledge of the man’s condition. Therefore He asked,...More



Monday, February 14, 2022

Tolerance or benevolence?

There is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself a ransom for all.
1 Timothy 2:5.6.

Tolerance or benevolence?
Tolerance is in modern times one of the highest virtues. It is reckoned to be an essential precondition for harmonious cooperation among people and as a means of combating fanaticism, prejudice and discrimination. Intolerance, on the other hand, is certainly the cause of disagreement, whether in families, social strata or internationally.

We must, however, all admit that we can easily be tolerant in matters that barely concern us,...More



Sunday, February 13, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (30)

The Jews therefore quarrelled among themselves, saying, How can this man give us his flesh to eat? Then Jesus said to them, Most assuredly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. For my flesh is food indeed, and my blood is drink indeed.
John 6:52-55.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (30)
Jesus first spoke of the manna, the wilderness food of the people of Israel, then proceeded to the bread of life, a type of Himself who had become Man....More



Saturday, February 12, 2022

Up in the loft

As the heavens are high above the earth, so great is his mercy toward those who fear him; as far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.
Psalm 103:11.12.

Up in the loft
Martina had been brought up in a Christian family, but then she had led her life not according to the will of God, but as she herself pleased: twenty long years without God, twenty wasted years including adultery, divorce and imprisonment.

One day she found a Bible up in the loft. It wasn’t her intention to seek after God, but God sought her! Martina opened the book and by...More



Friday, February 11, 2022

”Jesus, have mercy on me!” (4)

Jesus stood still and commanded him to be called. Then they called the blind man, saying to him, Be of good cheer. Rise, he is calling you. And throwing aside his garment, he rose and came to Jesus.
Mark 10:49.50.

”Jesus, have mercy on me!” (4)
“Jesus stood still.” These few words reveal the Saviour’s sympathy. And it applies to everyone who realises his sinful state. The Son of God came to earth to die on the cross for sinners. This shows the greatness of His mercy. Bartimæus was important to Him, as is everyone who turns to Him in dire need.

Jesus said, “Call him!” The...More



Thursday, February 10, 2022

Peter and John, apostles of Jesus, had healed a lame man who...

Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said, … Let it be known to you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead, by him this man stands here before you whole. This is the stone which was rejected by you builders, which has become the chief cornerstone. Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.
Acts 4:8-12.

Peter and John, apostles of Jesus, had healed a lame man who was begging at a gate of the temple in Jerusalem. They explained to the...More



Wednesday, February 9, 2022

The mystery of godliness (6)

Without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifested in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen by angels, preached among the Gentiles, believed on in the world.
1 Timothy 3:16.

The mystery of godliness (6)
“That … which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled” (1 John 1:1). Thus the apostle John summarised the time that he and the other eleven disciples spent together with the Lord Jesus. He was indeed present and seen, even if His appearance was not conspicuous.

Today He is hidden from human sight. The Lord had...More



Tuesday, February 8, 2022

”Jesus, have mercy on me!” (3)

Then many warned him (Bartimæus) to be quiet; but he cried out all the more, Son of David, have mercy on me. So Jesus stood still.
Mark 10:48.49.

”Jesus, have mercy on me!” (3)
We may well understand why the crowd was angry over Bartimæus shouting so loudly. Everyone wanted to hear what Jesus said and witness what He did. Their expectations were disturbed by his desperate pleading; so they endeavoured to silence him. It would have been better, if they had simply taken him to Jesus Christ: then he would have stopped shouting. Was it egotism or indifference that overshadowed any feeling for...More



Monday, February 7, 2022

A Christian lady once said: “At the age of eight I...

The LORD has appeared of old to me, saying, Yes, I have loved you with an everlasting love; therefore with loving kindness I have drawn you.
Jeremiah 31:3.

A Christian lady once said: “At the age of eight I made friends with a classmate whose family believed in Jesus Christ. In our home God was never mentioned. Nevertheless I had questions about God early on.

Later my friend invited me to a meeting of young Christians. There I heard

a)that the Son of God came to earth to save people;

b)that Jesus bore the guilt of lost sinners and its punishment on the...More



Sunday, February 6, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (29)

I am the bread of life. Your fathers ate the manna in the wilderness and are dead. This is the bread which comes down from heaven, that one may eat of it and not die. I am the living bread which came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live for ever, and the bread that I shall give is my flesh, which I shall give for the life of the world.
John 6:48-51.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (29)
In the course of their discussion with Jesus the Jews had mentioned the manna in the wilderness. In their view that miracle was much greater than the single occurrence they had experienced...More



Saturday, February 5, 2022

The raising of Lazarus from the dead makes it abundantly plain...

When he (Jesus) heard that Lazarus was sick, he stayed two more days in the place where he was.
John 11:6.

The raising of Lazarus from the dead makes it abundantly plain that Jesus is the Son of God (cf. Romans 1:4). Today we should like to consider one detail of the report. The two sisters of Lazarus, who had fallen gravely ill, sent this message to Jesus: “Lord, behold, he whom you love is sick” (v. 3). They were well acquainted with Jesus; He had frequently been their guest. Now their brother was very ill. Tactfully, so as not to give Jesus a direct order to come to them, they simply described the...More



Friday, February 4, 2022

“Jesus, have mercy on me!” (2)

When he (Bartimæus) heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to cry out and say, Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!
Mark 10:47.

“Jesus, have mercy on me!” (2)
Blind Bartimæus was aware that a great multitude was passing by. That gave him hope for pity and perhaps some small donations. Then he learned just who was passing by: Jesus of Nazareth. How astonishing for him! Bartimæus cried out: “Jesus, Son of David!”

Jesus was the miracle worker, the carpenter and teacher from Nazareth, that small, insignificant town that once caused one to ask: “Can anything good come...More



Thursday, February 3, 2022

In April 1943 during the Second World War the Scottish pastor...

In the day when I cried out, you answered me, and made me bold with strength in my soul.

The LORD will perfect that which concerns me; your mercy, o LORD, endures for ever.

Psalm 138:3.8.

In April 1943 during the Second World War the Scottish pastor Donald Caskie, who lived in France, was taken prisoner for helping allied soldiers to flee from France.

He later wrote about his imprisonment: “It was an extremely humiliating experience that could easily make a person despair. But my knowledge of the Bible preserved me.” His Bible was, in fact, confiscated, but he said: “I had it in my...More



Wednesday, February 2, 2022

The mystery of godliness (5)

Without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifested in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen by angels, preached among the Gentiles.
1 Timothy 3:16.

The mystery of godliness (5)
The first three statements about the Lord Jesus concern His life and work from His birth to the ascension. Now we shall consider a fact that has had great significance since the glorification of the Lord Jesus. It is “the preaching of Jesus Christ” (Romans 16:25).

It concerns the gospel, the good news that is made known: “He who believes and is baptised will be saved; but he...More



Tuesday, February 1, 2022

“Jesus, have mercy on me!” (1)

Now they came to Jericho. As he went out of Jericho with his disciples and a great multitude, blind Bartimæus, the son of Timæus, sat by the road begging.
Mark 10:46.

“Jesus, have mercy on me!” (1)
We have here one of the many short reports in the gospels with a wealth of content. A life full of need (Bartimæus), hearts void of understanding (the multitude), and the love and mercy of the Lord Jesus.

Jesus Christ was on His final journey that took Him from Jericho to Jerusalem, where He would be crucified a few days later. A “great multitude” followed Him, among them surely...More



Monday, January 31, 2022

What a surprise!

The grace of our Lord was exceedingly abundant with faith and love which are in Christ Jesus.
1 Timothy 1:14.

What a surprise!
A burglar crept cautiously through the garden, forced the door of the terrace open and entered the house. With his torch that he had dimmed he made his way through the rooms and searched them. Then he heard a car coming up the drive and stopping in front of the garage. In his haste he grabbed a bundle of banknotes on a chest of drawers and fled.

What a surprise he got when he examined his booty! What he had stolen was not banknotes, but a pile of Christian...More



Sunday, January 30, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (28)

No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him; and I will raise him up at the last day. It is written in the prophets, And they shall all be taught by God. Therefore everyone who has heard and learned from the Father comes to me. Not that anyone has seen the Father, except he who is from God; he has seen the Father. Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in me has everlasting life.
John 6:44-47.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (28)
The Jewish scribes revealed their disapproval of Jesus by murmuring, when He claimed to have come from heaven (vv. 41-43). They thus proved what...More



Saturday, January 29, 2022

He didn’t want to be healed!

Heal my soul, for I have sinned against you.

The chastisement for our peace was upon him, and by his stripes we are healed.

Psalm 41:4; Isaiah 53:5.

He didn’t want to be healed!
The man whom I saw stretched out in the sun on the ground near one of the city’s gates was begging.

When a tourist passed by, he would pull up his trouser leg to show a wound covered with dust, while he held out his other hand with a sad expression. That wound needed treatment! In the hospital opposite he could have received all the care necessary. A friend from the district explained to me that...More



Friday, January 28, 2022

“I am the bread of life”

Jesus said to them, I am the bread of life. He who comes to me shall never hunger; and he who believes in me shall never thirst.
John 6:35.

“I am the bread of life”
Everyone knows how important bread is. Bread means life. The Lord Jesus used this everyday illustration to explain a spiritual truth. He said that He Himself is the bread of life. Therefore whoever receives Him will never again suffer spiritual hunger in his heart and soul, for in contrast to the daily nourishment that sustains life, he has come to know Him who is life itself and who alone gives life. Bread must be eaten. The Lord...More



Thursday, January 27, 2022

A budding policeman

There is no creature hidden from his sight, but all things are naked and open to the eyes of him to whom we must give account.
Hebrews 4:13.

A budding policeman
Jamie was a young Canadian boy living in Ottawa in the eighties. One day he went shopping with his mother to buy what he longed for: a siren for his tricycle imitating that of the police. On the way home Jamie tried out his siren. The strident sound startled a man coming towards him, who stopped terrified, then ran off after throwing away the bag he was carrying. Jewels scattered over the pavement.

Jamie’s mother picked them...More



Wednesday, January 26, 2022

The mystery of godliness (4)

Without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifested in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen by angels.
1 Timothy 3:16.

The mystery of godliness (4)
When the Lord Jesus was on earth, not only the visible world looked upon Him, but also the world of angels. Angels had been created long before they beheld their Creator for the first time at the birth of Jesus. But then they immediately rejoiced audibly: “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, goodwill towards men” (Luke 2:14).

The Son of God on this earth fully occupied the attention of the angels....More



Tuesday, January 25, 2022

He has paid for you

When we were still without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. … While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
Romans 5:6.8.

He has paid for you
A Christian was preaching the good news of Jesus Christ in a town in Canada. A man entered the hall under the influence of drink and started to abuse those present. When some tried to take him outside, he became violent and insulted the preacher. The police had to intervene, and one month later legal action was taken against him. Since he could not pay the fine imposed by the court, he was sentenced to a few weeks in...More



Monday, January 24, 2022

A slight change of direction, or a total return?

They return, but not to the Most High.
Hosea 7:16.

A slight change of direction, or a total return?
In the course of a lifetime many people are forced to make a correction in the course they have taken, because they notice that things cannot continue on the pathway they are following.

Businessmen who have spent their working life making a success of their career retire early in order to enjoy life at last.

People who have been leading an unhealthy way of life pay more attention to the food they eat and undertake physical activity to promote their health.

Persons...More



Sunday, January 23, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (27)

The Jews then complained about him, because he said, I am the bread which came down from heaven. And they said, Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? How is it then that he says, I have come down from heaven? Jesus therefore answered and said to them, Do not murmur among yourselves.
John 6:41-43.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (27)
Jesus had provided His listeners with bread, but the spiritual teaching that He added was rejected. Only a few minutes before the people had pleaded, “Lord, give us this bread always” (v. 34). Now they were complaining. They...More



Saturday, January 22, 2022

The first miraculous sign performed by the Lord Jesus happened...

This beginning of signs Jesus did in Cana of Galilee, and manifested his glory; and his disciples believed in him. After this he went down to Capernaum, he, his mother, his brothers, and his disciples, and they did not stay there many days.
John 2:11.12.

The first miraculous sign performed by the Lord Jesus happened at a wedding in Cana. He turned water into wine. It was a matter of six large vessels containing an average of some 22 gallons each, and the wine was of the best quality! Through this sign Jesus manifested His glory as the Son of God, the promised Redeemer (ch. 1:14; 20:30.31).

As wine...More



Friday, January 21, 2022

The right one to serve God in prison (2)

The Spirit of the LORD God is upon me, because the LORD has anointed me to preach good tidings to the poor, he has sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound.
Isaiah 61:1.

The right one to serve God in prison (2)
After being imprisoned I was subjected to a harsh interrogation and finally led to a squalid cell in which there were other prisoners. They were a pathetic group of dirty, famished human beings. They had suddenly become my companions for an indefinite period.

One man looked at me and asked, “Why...More



Thursday, January 20, 2022

The right one to serve God in prison (1)

I heard the voice of the LORD; saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then I said, Here am I! Send me.

How shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher?

Isaiah 6:8; Romans 10:14.

The right one to serve God in prison (1)
I was troubled by the problems confronting my compatriots who were suffering greatly under a totalitarian government. Preachers were being executed, Christians cast into prison and Bibles burnt.

I decided to visit Christians living in isolated districts to encourage them and bring them new...More



Wednesday, January 19, 2022

The mystery of godliness (3)

Without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifested in the flesh, justified in the Spirit.
1 Timothy 3:16.

The mystery of godliness (3)
We have seen that true godliness is connected with the eternal Son of God becoming Man in the fullness of time. Now we learn that He was “justified in the Spirit”.

“Justified” in this context cannot mean that he was exonerated from guilt. That can apply only to those accused and found innocent. “Justified in the Spirit” signifies that He was declared or proven to be righteous, as if a judge had found a person...More



Tuesday, January 18, 2022

The Lord Jesus was speaking here of people who belonged to Him through...

My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of my hand.
John 10:27.28.

The Lord Jesus was speaking here of people who belonged to Him through faith. He called them “my sheep” and that characterised them.

“My sheep hear my voice”. A simple sentence, but what a significance for those who have been saved through Christ’s shed blood! Other voices may be audible, but they do not interest them. This one voice alone means so much to them!

“I know them”....More



Monday, January 17, 2022

Groping about in the dark

Arise, call on your God; perhaps your God will consider us, so that we may not perish.
Jonah 1:6.

Groping about in the dark
When someone feels helpless, being void of any ideas when trying to come to terms with a problem, he is, metaphorically speaking, groping about in the dark. It is improbable that he will ever succeed, unless by pure chance.

The prophet Jonah was on a ship that was in dire trouble out at sea. The sailors were calling on their gods in their fear. When nothing availed, the captain went up to Jonah, saying the words of today’s verse: “Call on your God; perhaps your...More



Sunday, January 16, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (26)

I have come down from heaven, not to do my own will, but the will of him who sent me. This is the will of the Father who sent me, that of all he has given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up at the last day. And this is the will of him who sent me, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in him may have everlasting life; and I will raise him up at the last day.
John 6:38.40.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (26)
These three verses deal with two aspects of the will of God the Father. In the first place we read of His will concerning Jesus Christ, His Son. Those whom the Father has...More



Saturday, January 15, 2022

Michelangelo Buonarroti (1475-1564) was one of the greatest artists of...

And I, if I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all peoples to myself.
John 12:32.

Michelangelo Buonarroti (1475-1564) was one of the greatest artists of the western world, known as a painter, sculptor and architect, but he also left some masterly poems behind. In his last sonnet he takes stock of 80 years, comparing his life with a journey over a stormy sea in a rocking boat. He is well aware that, at the end of this journey, he will have to account for all his activity.
Michelangelo knows that his devotion to art will not help him in this. So he looks ahead and ends with the words: “Neither...More



Friday, January 14, 2022

Luke reported the feast that Levi made for the Lord Jesus in...

He (Jesus) went out and saw a tax collector named Levi, sitting at the tax office. And he said to him, Follow me. So he left all, rose up, and followed him. Then Levi gave him a great feast in his own house.
Luke 5:27-29.

Luke reported the feast that Levi made for the Lord Jesus in his house. When Jesus called him, Levi left everything, his work and his habits, to follow Him. The first thing on this new pathway was a feast for Jesus. People of all kinds came to this feast, which was in honour of Jesus.

The self-satisfied, religious Pharisees (whose name means “separated”) wouldn’t think of...More



Thursday, January 13, 2022

According to human standards God’s message, the gospel, would be...

We preach Christ crucified, … to the Greeks foolishness, but to those who are called … Christ, the power of God and the wisdom of God.
1 Corinthians 1:23.24.

According to human standards God’s message, the gospel, would be doomed to failure.

It is a message that speaks of weakness: an itinerant preacher announced it for three and a half years 2,000 years ago and was then crucified in weakness (cf. 2 Corinthians 13:4). Indeed, the message of the cross means nothing but “foolishness” to many (1 Corinthians 1:18).

Those who made it known were weaklings: they were unknown,...More



Wednesday, January 12, 2022

The mystery of godliness (2)

Without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifested in the flesh.
1 Timothy 3:16.

The mystery of godliness (2)
The word “godliness!” or the fear of God does not so much indicate certain forms of piety that people observe; true godly fear is rather expressed by the fact that the Lord Jesus is the central Person in the life of a believer. He Himself must ever be before our eyes, not merely on Sundays or religious holidays.

The first statement about the Person of the Lord Jesus reveals a great wonder: the eternal Son of God became Man and revealed all...More



Tuesday, January 11, 2022

Pyrrhus lived from 319 to 272 B.C. He was the king of...

The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want. He makes me to lie down in green pastures; he leads me beside the still waters. He restores my soul; he leads me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.
Psalm 23:1-3.

Pyrrhus lived from 319 to 272 B.C. He was the king of the realm of Epirus in the north-west of Greece and was one of the leading warlords in the era following Alexander the Great. He achieved fame through conquering the Romans. In one of these victorious battles, however, he lost so many of his own soldiers that he exclaimed: “Another such victory and we are lost!” Even today a victory...More



Monday, January 10, 2022

In the parable of the prodigal son we cast a glance into God’s...

Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you, and I am no longer worthy to be called your son. Make me like one of your hired servants.
Luke 15:18.19.

In the parable of the prodigal son we cast a glance into God’s fatherly heart and see His joy when a sinner repents and turns to Him. But we see even more.

The prodigal son set out to return home. What he intended saying to his father we have read in today’s verses. He is still a long way from home, but when his father spots him, he is deeply moved and runs towards him and embraces him. The son starts to make his confession, but gets no...More



Sunday, January 9, 2022

Had the Jews in Galilee listened carefully? Clearly not! Beginning...

They said to him, Lord, give us this bread always. And Jesus said to them, I am the bread of life. He who comes to me shall never hunger, and he who believes in me shall never thirst. But I said to you that you have seen me and yet you do not believe. All that the Father gives me will come to me, and the one who comes to me I will by no means cast out.
John 6:34-37.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (25)
Had the Jews in Galilee listened carefully? Clearly not! Beginning with the manna in the wilderness, Jesus had just spoken of the “true bread from heaven”: “The bread of God is he who comes...More



Saturday, January 8, 2022

The living God changed my life

Having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.
Romans 5:1.

The living God changed my life
This is Michael’s report: “Through my religious upbringing I was constantly in touch with belief in God as a child. In my youth, however, I was influenced by the philosophy of Descartes and began to doubt everything religious. I considered my childish faith as naïve. Many of life’s vital questions remained unanswered however.

At the age of 20 I met a Christian lady who lived out her faith authentically and naturally. I started to see God and the...More



Friday, January 7, 2022

Religious tradition

This people honours me with their lips, but their heart is far from me. And in vain they worship me, teaching as doctrines the commandments of men.
Mark 7:6.7.

Religious tradition
When Jesus Christ lived here on earth there were countless religious persons in Israel. They held on to their Jewish traditions tenuously. But with most of them living faith in God was lacking. The Son of God, who could see into their hearts, unmasked their sanctimonious attitude, making it clear to them how empty and useless their external religious appearance was. Today, too, there are many who profess to be...More



Thursday, January 6, 2022

The prophet Elijah suddenly appeared on the scene and boldly...

As the LORD God of Israel lives, before whom I stand, there shall not be dew nor rain these years, except at my word.
1 Kings 17:1.

The prophet Elijah suddenly appeared on the scene and boldly confronted the wicked king Ahab. Elijah referred to the one true, living God, before whom he stood. He knew that he was seen and protected by God, and he served Him.

“The LORD, He is God!” was Elijah’s basic message (1 Kings 18:39) and the meaning of his name. These were words that shocked, penetrated and polarised the people, being out of place in the age in which he lived.

In chapter 16 of...More



Wednesday, January 5, 2022

The mystery of godliness (1)

Without controversy great is the mystery of godliness.
1 Timothy 3:16.

The mystery of godliness (1)
The content of this verse, which will occupy us on the following Wednesdays in more detail, has called forth wonder and worship among many believers.

Six meaningful statements about the Son of God are entitled “The mystery of godliness”. The word “mystery” occurs several times in the New Testament and generally indicates what was concealed in Old Testament times, but revealed by Christ and the apostles and prophets of the New Testament, and can now be understood by all born again...More



Tuesday, January 4, 2022

Standing in the limelight

Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am chief. However, for this reason I obtained mercy, that in me first Christ might show all longsuffering, as a pattern for all who are going to believe on him for everlasting life.
1 Timothy 1:15.16.

Standing in the limelight
How we love prominence! It is part of man’s nature to want to take the prime place. But here it is not a question of being the footballer of the year, the number one in the tennis rankings, or the world’s best skier, not even of being the world’s richest inhabitant.

Today’s text is about being the...More



Monday, January 3, 2022

How can someone be free and yet obey at the same time? For...

Now having been set free from sin, and having become slaves of God, you have your fruit to holiness, and the end, everlasting life.
Romans 6:22.

How can someone be free and yet obey at the same time? For many people this is a contradiction of terms. Freedom for them signifies the possibility of doing what pleases them or whatever enters their mind without any restriction. They say, “If I have to obey someone, then I am not free.”

Even Christians may be inclined to think so. But for whoever follows the Lord Jesus Christ and is guided by the Word of God the words “freedom” and “obedience”...More



Sunday, January 2, 2022

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (24)

They said to him, What sign will you perform then, that we may see it and believe you? What work will you do? Our fathers ate the manna in the desert; as it is written, He gave them bread from heaven to eat. Then Jesus said to them, Most assuredly, I say to you, Moses did not give you the bread from heaven, but my Father gives you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is he who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.
John 6:30-33.

Thoughts on the Gospel of John (24)
The Lord Jesus had told those who had followed Him to believe in Him whom God had sent, i.e. Himself. But they...More



Saturday, January 1, 2022

What a precious, comforting word this is! At the start of...

Your Father knows the things you have need of before you ask him.
Matthew 6:8.

What a precious, comforting word this is! At the start of a New Year it is especially encouraging: “Your Father knows.”
Do you feel pitiable or oppressed? Entrust yourself to Him, for your Father knows your situation perfectly. And with His love He wants to make you feel happy. He is “your shield and your exceedingly great reward” (Genesis 15:1).

Are you sad and troubled in your soul? Trust Him, for your Father knows the cause of your trouble. Keeping close to Him soothes your pain.

Are you...More




For enquiries, notifications and ad placement send mail to [email protected]
Copyright 2012 - 2022 All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy || Terms & Conditions