Psalm 113:2-3

Verse of the Day: Psalm 113:2-3

“Blessed be the name of the LORD From this time forth and forever. From the rising of the sun to its setting.  The name of the LORD is to be praised.” – Psalm 113:2-3 

I absolutely love these verses.  They cover times and places regarding the praises of God.  We are to praise Him without ceasing.  Verse two says we are to praise God starting now and continue forever.  Note the wording ‘from this time forth and forever.’  We are always to praise God.   We can praise Him with our voice, we can praise Him by our deeds. We can praise Him in our sharing of Him to the lost, we can praise Him in our encouraging of the brethren.  We praise Him when we trust in Him completely.  Living our lives in complete and total submission to God is an act of praise and worship.

Verse three addresses where we are to praise Him.  In the Hebrew, the intent of the phrase ‘from the rising of the sun’ denotes anything to the east of our position, for the sun rises in the east.  In the same way, the intent of the phrase ‘to its setting’ denotes anything to the west of our position, for the sun sets in the west.  And because the earth is round and if you continue to travel to the east, you will arrive at the same place from the west, and vice-versa, it covers our current position as well.

The main idea of these two verses is clear.  God is to be praised always and in all places.  The apostle Paul said it as clearly as it can be.  “Whether then, you eat or drink or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.” 1 Corinthians 10:31.  By giving God the glory, we are giving Him our praise as well.

William Funkhouser MDiv, ThD, Founder and President of True Devotion Ministries, Inc.

Acts 4:12

Verse of the Day Devotion: Act 4:12

“And there is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men by which we must be saved.” – Acts 4:12 

Peter and John were going up to the temple at the ninth hour which was the hour of prayer.  A man who had been lame from birth was sitting at the temple gate called “Beautiful” begging for financial assistance.  Upon seeing Peter and John, he requested financial help from them.  Then Peter and John looked at him and Peter said, “I do not possess silver and gold, but what I do have I give to you: In the name of Jesus Christ the Nazarene—walk!” Acts 3:6. Peter then helped him up and immediately his feet and ankles were strengthened, and he began to walk.  Many people saw this man walking and praising God, knowing that this was the man crippled and begging every day at the Beautiful Gate.

Now, Peter and John began teaching the people about Christ.  “And now, brethren, I know that you acted in ignorance, just as your rulers did also.  But the things which God announced beforehand by the mouth of all the prophets, that His Christ would suffer, He has thus fulfilled.  Therefore, repent and return, so that your sins may be wiped away, in order that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord;” Acts 3:17-19.  They are calling the leadership to return to true worship and adoration of the true God, not the one they were serving.  Note: There were around 5000 men who believed their word when the priests and the captain of the temple guard and the Sadducees came to have them arrested.

The next day, John and Peter were taken before the rulers, elders and scribes where they were asked by what power they healed this man.  Peter then, filled with the Holy Spirit, answered by saying that it was Jesus the Nazarene, whom they crucified and whom God raised from the dead; by His name this man has been healed and is standing before them.  He added then, “He is the STONE, WHICH WAS REJECTED by you, THE BUILDERS, but WHICH BECAME THE CHIEF CORNER stone.” Acts 4:11. And then they declared, by our focus verse, “And there is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men by which we must be saved.” Acts 4:12.

The word ‘salvation’ properly denotes any preservation or the keeping of anything in a “safe” state; a preserving from harm.  Also, it denotes deliverance of body or mind of the same, sickness, pain, danger, etc.  In the New Testament, it is normally applied to the Messiah, Christ, and what He came to do.  “For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost.” Luke 19:10. Mankind cannot, in and of themselves, become found.  We were separated from God and did not have the access Adam and Eve had prior to their sin.

What Peter was saying to the leadership was they did not have the power to provide this salvation.  Their adherence to the law and its rules and works could not provide what mankind needed.  There is only one name by which man can be saved, that being Jesus the Christ, the Son of God.  And these words pertain to us today as they did to those in the first century.  It is Christ alone, not through any other man or woman, prophet, idol or false god, teacher, leader or any false Christ. Salvation has its origin in God, and the Savior, He gave us, and cannot be originated by any power among people.

This word must be preached to all people, letting them know that Christ is the only answer to all our issues; physical, moral or spiritual.  Salvation from all these areas is only available by the Creator of all things.  Sin caused separation from God, sickness, pain, danger and all things that we suffer today.  And the Messiah, Christ is the only source of salvation from all these areas.  Our job is to go out and evangelize the world.  “And the master said to the slave, ‘Go out into the highways and along the hedges, and compel them to come in, so that my house may be filled.” Luke 14:23. Many are deluded that salvation comes from many sources, religions, works, etc.  It is our job to compel the world to come to God’s house through the only door possible, the death, burial and resurrection of Christ and the acceptance of this work. And we must not cave and give in to the arguments of those who question or debate us.  The answer is clear and immutable.  Stand strong and spread this good news to all we come in contact with.  In so doing, we will fill His house, thus pleasing Him and also help those who need and want salvation, receive it.  This is love, both of God and our fellow man.

William Funkhouser MDiv, ThD, Founder and President of True Devotion Ministries, Inc.

Colossians 3:17

Verse of the Day Devotion: Colossians 3:17

“Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father.” – Colossians 3:17 

Let us first look at Colossians 1:7. “just as you learned it from Epaphras, our beloved fellow bondservant, who is a faithful servant of Christ on our behalf, and he also informed us of your love in the Spirit.”  Colossians 1:7-8.  Paul refers to himself as a bondservant of Christ. The Greek word for bondservant is ‘doulos’ which translated is servant or slave. And since we are slaves to Christ, we are His and not our own.  For we became His when we accepted the work of Christ on the cross and the Spirit of God entered in and lives within us.  “However, you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you. But if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Him.” Romans 8:9  And we were bought with His blood.  “Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own?  For you have been bought with a price: therefore, glorify God in your body.” 1 Corinthians 6:20.

We are not our own.  When a slave does anything, it is at the command of his owner and master.  Anything we do for God we do because He has commanded us to do so.  It is not because we chose to do it, but we chose to obey Him.  This is important, for in reality not only does He command us what to do, but also helps us by working in us to do it.  “So then, my beloved, just as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure.” Philippians 2:12-13. His Spirit who resides in us will do the work He has called us to do, what we must do is submit to Him, and listen to Him so that we know what to do and how to do it.

And because He is our Lord and Master, anything we do must be in His name and not our own.  He is all knowing, and He knows exactly what is needed to fulfill His will not only in our lives, but in the lives of those He brings our way.  “And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.”  Romans 8:28. So, if He leads people to us, we must listen and allow Him to not only command us what we are to do, but also to submit to Him and allow Him to work in us to accomplish His good purpose.

So, as our focus verse tells us, whatever we do, whether it be in word by what we say, or in deed by what we do, we must do it in the name of Jesus.  This entails every outward thing we do.  And if we do it in Jesus’ name, then it must be what and how He would do it.  That is why we must submit to Him and allow His Spirit to guide us.  We must be humble enough to realize it is not our work, but His work that He does through us.  The knowledge we have is from Him.  The opportunities we have are from Him.  The timing of each work we do for Him is from Him.  And finally, the method by which we do this work is from Him.

We should be thankful to God every time we are given a task to do in the name of our Lord Jesus, for in accomplishing this task, we glorify Him in our submission to His Spirit and His will.  This is the greatest honor we could ever receive, being used by Him.

William Funkhouser MDiv, ThD, Founder and President of True Devotion Ministries, Inc.

Psalm 7:17

Verse of the Day Devotion Psalm 7:17  

“I will give thanks to the LORD according to His righteousness and will sing praise to the name of the LORD Most High.” – Psalm 7:17  

Through this week we will be looking at verses in the scriptures that speak of thankfulness to our God that is due to Him.  And our focus verse today is, “I will give thanks to the LORD according to His righteousness and will sing praise to the name of the LORD Most High.” Psalm 7:17.

We read in verse one the following. “A Shiggaion of David, which he sang to the LORD concerning Cush, a Benjamite. O Lord my God, in Thee I have taken refuge; Save me from all those who pursue me, and deliver me, lest he tear my soul like a lion, dragging me away, while there is none to deliver.” Psalm 7:1-2.  First, let us look at what a Shiggaion is.  This denotes a lyrical poem composed under strong mental emotion; a song of impassioned imagination accompanied with suitable music; a wild and passionate writing. 

He is under strong persecution by those who pursue him which speaks of his enemies.  And he cries out to God saying that he takes refuge in Him asking that God would save Him.  He then goes on to say, “O LORD my God, if I have done this, If there is injustice in my hands, If I have rewarded evil to my friend, Or have plundered him who without cause was my adversary, Let the enemy pursue my soul and overtake it; And let him trample my life down to the ground, And lay my glory in the dust. Selah.” Psalm 7:3-5.  It appears that he was falsely accused of something he did not do. He then cries out to God saying if He did do what he was accused of then let his enemy overtake him. 

Then he prays that God will vindicate him for he is innocent.  “Arise, O LORD, in Thine anger; Lift up Thyself against the rage of my adversaries and arouse Thyself for me; Thou hast appointed judgment. And let the assembly of the peoples encompass Thee; And over them return Thou on high. The LORD judges the peoples; Vindicate me, O LORD, according to my righteousness and my integrity that is in me.  let the evil of the wicked come to an end but establish the righteous; For the righteous God tries the hearts and minds.” Psalm 7:6-9.  David calls on God to arise and make it known what really happened. He is saying Your own people who compass your  altar, the faithful of the land, are full of gloomy apprehensions. They hear the charges against me; and see how I am persecuted. Their minds are divided; they know not what to think. For their sakes, return and ascend to the judgment-seat; and let them see, by the dispensations of your providence, who is innocent and who is guilty. David feared not to make this appeal to God; for the consciousness of his innocence showed him at once how the discrimination would be made.

He then states that he lays everything in God’s hands. “My shield is with God, who saves the upright in heart.” Psalm 7:10.  He trusted in God, knowing He would protect him and deliver him from his troubles. And because of all this, He gives thanks in our focus verse.  “I will give thanks to the LORD according to His righteousness and will sing praise to the name of the LORD Most High.” Psalm 7:17.  David says that because of all this, he will give thanks to God. That is, particularly as manifested in the treatment of the righteous and the wicked, protecting the one, and bringing deserved punishment upon the other. The purpose of the psalm is to show this. In the course of the psalm the author had declared his full conviction that this was the character of God, and now, in view of this, he says that he will render to him the praise and glory which such a character deserves. He will acknowledge him by public acts of praise as such a God; and will at all times ascribe these attributes to him. 

And I want to encourage all Christians to be thankful in all times, no matter how difficult things appear to be.  Nothing is too difficult for God; therefore we need to trust Him. “And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the first-born among many brethren; and whom He predestined, these He also called; and whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified.”  Romans 8:28-30.

William Funkhouser MDiv, ThD, Founder and President of True Devotion Ministries.

Psalm 103:1

Verse of the Day Devotion Psalm 103:1 

“Bless the LORD, O my soul; And all that is within me, bless His holy name.” –  Psalm 103:1

David starts this prayer with ‘Bless the Lord, Oh my soul’.  The word here translated bless is the Hebrew word baw-rak which is a primitive root meaning to kneel, and by implication to bless God as an act of adoration.  What is implied here is that David went before the Lord God with true humility, kneeling before Him and abundantly blessing and praising His God.  It no doubt also implies a mighty sense of gratitude to Him for all God has done for Him. 

Most of the time, the call to praise and worship is addressed to a worshipping community, such as a church, or to some other group of people.  And to be honest, most worship is done at a church with music and lyrics in the front.  And there is nothing wrong with this for when the Church gets together, and by Church I mean the people, we should always kneel or bow before Him giving thanks, worship, and praise which He absolutely deserves.  However, as we see in our focus verse, David calls on his own inner being to bless the Lord.  This act of worship involves his entire person. Humans bless the Lord by speaking well of him as they complement him publicly. Blessing, or praise, is the natural response to contemplating the Lord’s holy character, which provides an inexhaustible reason for extolling him. The psalmist’s praise of the Lord is intentional, as he focuses on various aspects of his greatness and goodness.   

However, how many of us bow before Him alone, where no one can see us and praise and worship Him privately as well?  How many of us go to Him alone and give Him the glory and praise due Him.  This can give us a wonderful time to praise Him with our own words, our own songs, and our own heart in the way that we feel at that time.  This is a beautiful opportunity to use, as theologian Albert Barnes puts it,  “all our powers and faculties; all that can be employed in his praise: the heart, the will, the affections, the emotions. The idea is, that God is worthy of all the praise and adoration which the entire man can render. No one of his faculties or powers should be exempt from the duty and the privilege of praise.”  

The one value of these opening words is that they show us that worship is not involuntary or automatic. It calls for the coordination of all that we are. We should not restrict our worship to the sanctuary, but we must make everywhere a potential place of worship. We should enter worship and praise with all that we have, dedicated to giving Him all due Him. Then we may render a service of praise that is worthy and acceptable.

In this daily devotion, I want to encourage us all, and I do include myself in this, to take time to get alone with God and offer praise and blessings to Him with all we have and are.  And I encourage everyone in these times to not only offer praise to Him but pray to Him as well and then sit quietly and hear what He has to say back to us.  There is nothing like a two-way conversation with God.  I have experienced it and I never want to miss this time again.  This may be difficult at first, but once it becomes natural, I believe you will find this time as important as anything else you do.

William Funkhouser MDiv, ThD, Founder and President of True Devotion Ministries. 

Job 1:21

Verse of the Day Devotion:  Job 1:21 

“He said, naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I shall return there. The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away. Blessed be the name of the LORD.” –  Job 1:21

Job in this verse is dealing with extreme loss, more than most, if not all, in this world has ever experienced.  He lived in the land of Uz, and based on Job 1:1, he “was blameless, upright, fearing God and turning away from evil.” Job 1:1b.  He had ten children, seven sons and three daughters and many possessions including seven thousand sheep, three thousand camels, five hundred oxen and five hundred female donkeys.  He also had many servants who worked for him to take care of all these animals and other things Job owned.  In verse three he is declared by the writer as “the greatest of all men of the east.” Job 1:3b. 

Now one day Satan came to God, who spoke to Satan saying, “Have you considered My servant Job? For there is no one like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, fearing God and turning away from evil.” Job 1:8. God said there was no one like him in all the earth, blameless and upright more than anyone else on the earth.  Satan responded by saying, “Does Job fear God for nothing? Have You not made a hedge about him and his house and all that he has on every side? You have blessed the work of his hands, and his possessions have increased in the land.” Job 1:9b-10.  Satan was essentially saying you have fortified him with spikes and spears. You have defended him with an unapproachable hedge. He is an object of your specific care and is not exposed to the common trials of life.  He then adds the following.  “But put forth Your hand now and touch all that he has; he will surely curse You to Your face.” 

God then responds to him by saying, “Behold, all that he has is in your power, only do not put forth your hand on him.  So, Satan departed from the presence of the LORD.” Job 1:12. Then Satan goes to work.  First, the Sabeans came and stole all the donkeys and oxen and killed the servants tending them.  Then, according to a servant who came to him, fire fell from the sky which he called “the fire of God” and burned up all the sheep and the servants in the field, consuming them.   Then the Chaldeans took all the camels and killed all the servants with them.  Then worst of all, “While he was still speaking, another also came and said, “Your sons and your daughters were eating and drinking wine in their oldest brother’s house, and behold, a great wind came from across the wilderness and struck the four corners of the house, and it fell on the young people and they died, and I alone have escaped to tell you.” Job 1:18-29. 

Because of all this, Job lost everything he had.  He lost all his oxen and donkeys, his sheep, his camels and all his servants.  And worst of all, his ten children were killed when the house they were meeting at collapsed due to heavy winds that came upon it.  And because of all this, he tore his garments, shaved or pulled out the hair of his head and threw dust or ashes on his head, and fell on the ground, which were acts by which immense grief was expressed. Job must have felt the bitterness of anguish when he was told that, in addition to the loss of all his property, his children suffered a terrible death.

However, his response was not what Satan expected.  “He said, Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I shall return there. The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away. Blessed be the name of the LORD.” Job 1:21 which is our focus verse.  Notice what happened here.  Job did not point to the evil men or the natural disasters that took everything away.  This would not have eased the sorrow he felt, but he looks at a higher place.  He chose to look to the Sovereign Lord of the universe and to put his trust in God’s goodness.  At times, God allows hard times to impact those who love Him, and during these times we must cling to the truth that God is good.  God is sovereign, and nothing could happen that God does not know about.  When the Lord gives, we must praise Him and be thankful.  And when the Lord takes away, we must also praise Him and be thankful.  We must always remember, no matter what happens, God has our best interests at heart.  “And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.” Romans 8:28.   We may mourn our losses, whether they be things or loved ones, however, we must remember that God loves us more than we can understand and therefore works in everything on our behalf.  So, no matter what happens, we must always look to Him and, as Job declared in our focus verse, “The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away. Blessed be the name of the LORD.” Job 1:21b. 

William Funkhouser MDiv, ThD, Founder and President of True Devotion Ministries. 

Exodus 20:7

Verse of the Day Devotion:  Exodus 20:7

“You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain, for the LORD will not leave him unpunished who takes His name in vain.” – Exodus 20:7  

Our focus verse this week speaks of the third commandment. This is a verse that many do not understand in the fullness meant.  Many believe this means using the Lord’s name as a swear word, and this is included in the meaning.  However, there is much more that is intended by this phrase.  First, let us look at the Lord’s names based on what scripture says.  His name plays an essential role in the scriptures. 

Let us look at several verses that show His glory is exhibited through His name.  “O LORD, our Lord, How majestic is Your name in all the earth, Who have displayed Your splendor above the heavens!” Psalm 8:1.  And this one, “He has sent redemption to His people; He has ordained His covenant forever; Holy and awesome is His name.”   Psalm 111:9. In both of these verses, God’s name is exalted.  It is holy and awesome because of who He is.  His name is who He is; exalted, holy and awesome.  However, many times it is used in a less than a positive manner, and unfortunately, this shows how those who speak this way see Him.

In the Lord’s prayer, we are taught the manner we are to  address God.  “Our Father who is in heaven, Hallowed be Your name.  Your kingdom come. Your will be done, On earth as it is in heaven.” Matthew 6:9b-10.  His name and majesty should be one of the foremost thoughts in our prayers.  But as I read recently, too often we barge into God’s presence with presumptuous ‘to-do lists’ for Him, without being mindful of His holiness, awesomeness and the vast chasm that separates our nature from His.  We must be careful when we go to Him in prayer that we remember who He is and our love for Him. 

Another way we take His name in vain is via hypocrisy.  By hypocrisy is meant making profession of God’s name, but not living up to that profession. If we call ourselves followers of God, then we should live as such.  This include making promises to God and not keeping them.  Also, when we make rash swearing in vows such as  “I swear to God I will do it.”  The scripture are clear about this.  “But let your statement be, ‘Yes, yes’ or ‘No, no’; anything beyond these is of evil.” Matthew 5:37.  The idea is that we should not make a vow anytime, except when required in civic matters.  For if we do not follow through, then we break our vow.  This leads to using the name of God lightly and carelessly.  Examples of this are “Oh my God” or the name Jesus Christ in a form not referring to Him. 

There is so much that can be said here.  However, what is important is that we understand any reference to the name of God in a way that does not refer to His greatness, holiness, exaltedness should never be done.  He is the almighty  God who has no beginning or end, created everything that is and loved us so much that He provided forgiveness of all our sins through the death, burial and resurrection of His Son Jesus.  Knowing this, we should see Him for who He is, the Almighty One, and at no time should we use His name in any way that does not bring Him glory, honor, and praise. And if we do we will suffer the consequences of this act however God chooses.  “for the LORD will not leave him unpunished who takes His name in vain.” Exodus 20:7b.  As Paul wrote “Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” Philippians 4:8.  And as we think in this way so we should speak this way as well.

William Funkhouser MDiv, ThD, Founder and President of True Devotion Ministries. 

1 Peter 4:14

Verse of the Day Devotion:  1 Peter 4:14 

“If you are reviled for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the Spirit of glory and of God rests on you.” – 1 Peter 4:14

One of the most difficult things to endure in life today is shame and humiliation.  Think about a time in your life when someone embarrassed you in front of others.  I can remember several times as a child when I was mocked or insulted for various reasons in the presence of others my age.  When experiencing this, we want to go away and hide in order to fight the shame laid upon us.  However, exposure to shame was a peculiarly harsh experience in a world where ‘losing face’ was taken much more seriously than in todays western culture.  In Old Testament times those who stood by their faith in Yahweh (God) experienced this disgrace.  David wrote in the sixty-ninth psalm the following. “Because for Your sake I have borne reproach; Dishonor has covered my face. I have become estranged from my brothers And an alien to my mother’s sons. For zeal for Your house has consumed me, And the reproaches of those who reproach You have fallen on me. When I wept in my soul with fasting, It became my reproach. When I made sackcloth my clothing, I became a byword to them. Those who sit in the gate talk about me, And I am the song of the drunkards.” Psalm 69:7-12.  It is unknown as to the why this occurred, but his adversaries were filled with reproach for him and they strove to dishonor him.

What Peter is laying out here is the idea that if we are reviled because of our Christianity and our love and service to Christ, then we should not be embarrassed, but we should realize that we are blessed because the Spirit of God and His glory rests on us.  For as the Spirit of God rested upon Christ, so does it rest upon those followers who are persecuted.  It is not surprising that we as His followers should have to endure suffering and humiliation in the same way because of our allegiance to Him.  There are many people who find the idea of God a silly and stupid belief.  Many scientists believe saying this universe has a beginning and it was through an eternal God who created it and filled it with all that exists is foolish and idealistic.

Peter uses this same thought in an earlier verse.  “But even if you should suffer for the sake of righteousness, you are blessed. AND DO NOT FEAR THEIR INTIMIDATION, AND DO NOT BE TROUBLED, but sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you, yet with gentleness and reverence; and keep a good conscience so that in the thing in which you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ will be put to shame.” 1 Peter 3:14-16. He again states that those who suffer for the sake of Christ shall be blessed.  We should not shy away from the truth, but speak it in good conscience, being completely truthful about the gospel as declared in His word.  We should never be ashamed of it but should declare it with all confidence. 

Jesus also addressed this in His Sermon on the Mount.  “Blessed are you when people insult you and persecute you, and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of Me. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward in heaven is great; for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.” Matthew 5:11-12.  He also refers to those insulted in the name of Christ as blessed.  However, He goes further by stating if we are reproached; called evil and contemptuous names; and ridiculed because we are Christians, we will have a great reward awaiting us in heaven.  The more someone suffers for Christ, the greater their reward.

Therefore, if we are shamed because of our relationship with Christ our Messiah, we should not back down and become quiet but should stand and proudly declare Jesus with no hesitation or humiliation. He is the creator of all there is and came here to die for our sins so we can be reconciled with the Father.  This truth is nothing to be ashamed of.  On the contrary, it is because of Him that we, as Christians, are God’s children and will live with Him for all eternity, giving Him the worship, praise and honor He more than deserves.  But those who are ashamed are given a powerful warning from Jesus.  “For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will also be ashamed of him when He comes in the glory of His Father with the holy angels.” Mark 8:38.  So, stand proud as a child of God in this defiled world.  He gave His life for us, should we not be willing to give everything including our lives for Him?

William Funkhouser MDiv, ThD, Founder and President of True Devotion Ministries. 

Revelation 20:15

Verse of the Day Devotion: Revelation 20:15 

“And if anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.”  Revelation 20:15             

Today, my wife, son and I were going through True Devotion Ministries doctrinal statement to make some minor adjustments where needed.  When we finally got to the eschatology section, this verse stood out in a major way to me.  It speaks of those who never accepted the work Jesus did on the cross; His death, burial and resurrection that paid the penalty for their sins. 

Here is the basic order of what will take place as written in Revelation 20.  First, Satan will be thrown into an abyss for a thousand years.  Then those who were killed because of their testimony of Christ and had not received the mark on their hand or forehead will come to life and reigned with Christ for a thousand years. .  (Revelation 20:1-6).

After the thousand years have been completed, Satan will be released, and he will gather together an army.  With them, Satan will surround the saints and Jerusalem, but will be defeated.  After this, he will be thrown into the lake of fire where the beast and the false prophet already are. Then the dead are to be judged, every one of them are to be judged, after which  death and Hades will be thrown into the lake of fire.  (Revelation 20:7-14).

Next, we see our focus verse.  “And if anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.” Revelation 20:15.  The final verdict will be decided based on whether our name is found in the book of life or not.  Those whose names are written in the book of life are those who are saved.  Those who are destined for eternal life.  They believe that Jesus is the Christ. As Jesus put it, “As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up; so that whoever believes will in Him have eternal life. For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.” John 3:14-16. 

Now, there is one important idea I want to bring out.  Those who do not believe, their names are not written in the Lambs book of Life.  We all know many people who are not saved.  Family, friends and acquaintances.  We see many people all over who are not saved.  Do we desire all our family members to have their names in the book?  Do we desire all our friends to have their names in the book?  It is up to us to make sure the names of everyone we know, and meet are found in the book of life.  We as Christians have a responsibility to share the gospel to as many as we have the opportunity to speak with.  Most unsaved have no idea what their future holds for them.  Make it a point to introduce them to the saving knowledge of Jesus.  God loves them and has called us to go out where He takes us and present the gospel.  “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Matthew 28:19-20.  And since no one can be a disciple unless they are saved, we are called to share the gospel.  Let us do what we can to introduce as many people as we can to Jesus, praying to get their names in the most important book in all of history.

William Funkhouser MDiv, ThD, Founder and President of True Devotion Ministries.