Spiritual Training

Spiritual Training X2

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October 24 - Evening

"For if those who depend on the law are heirs, faith means nothing and the promise is worthless, because the law brings wrath. And where there is no law there is no transgression.
Therefore, the promise comes by faith, so that it may be by grace and may be guaranteed to all Abraham’s offspring—not only to those who are of the law but also to those who have the faith of Abraham. He is the father of us all. As it is written: 'I have made you a father of many nations.' He is our father in the sight of God, in whom he believed—the God who gives life to the dead and calls into being things that were not."

- Romans 4:14-17

Do You Trust Your Ability Under Law or God's Promise In Grace?

In today’s verse Paul is comparing the dead end that comes from trusting your ability to obey the law with the life that comes from trusting God’s ability to keep his promise. In the case of trusting in the law, a man is actually trusting in himself while disregarding God. In the case of trusting in the promise, a man is trusting in God while disregarding himself.
A man who depends on his ability to be obedient is showing contempt for something God has promised to give them if they will simply trust God’s promise.
Paul sums up the reason for the law when he says:
            “Where there is no law there is no transgression.”

In the above statement Paul is simply capturing the need for law. The law identifies God’s absolute standards. When Paul says God did not give the law to save us, then, a man may ask,
“Why would God even give the law to people if it is worthless?”

The answer to this is in understanding that the law is valuable because it establishes boundaries. A violation of those boundaries is called a “transgression.” Until the transgression that results in death is identified there is no need for salvation and the promise of life. So, if there is no law there is no known transgression; where there is no transgression there can be no salvation. With no law there is no clear identification of the problem and so there is no search, no need, no desire for salvation.
The good doctor must be able to identify the disease before he can promise the cure. The wise patient must trust the good doctor's diagnosis of the problem before he can trust the doctor's promised remedy.
The foolish patient, in this case, would consider the diagnosis (the law) as the cure. Do not confuse the diagnosis (law) with the remedy (promise).
Baptizo (Gr) - Baptize (Eng) - the English word baptize is a direct transliteration of the Greek word baptizo. If the English translators had translated the Greek word baptizo instead of transliterating it, they would have translated it as "immerse," "dip," or "place into."
The verb form
bapto referred to:
- the act of dipping clothes into dye,
- placing a jar into water to draw water into it,
- to a ship that had been sunk
Do I realize the vengence is not justice?
Do I realize that when I try to "even the score" I will actually suffer?
I will not pay back a wrong in order to "even the score."

Bible Reading Descriptions Here


(morning only)

Complete Text


Recharged mind and soul to reengage life


Social Security
Sierra Leone - in a land of suffering the church can be a place of forgiveness and compassion.

The latrine, or public restroom, outside the theater in
Beth Shean, Israel.
(click on image for larger size)
Model of the north section of the City of David in
David's day (1000 BC).
(click on image for larger size)

Someone to Quote

"I used to ask God to help me. Then I asked if I might help Him. I ended up by asking Him to do his work through me." - James Hudson Taylor (1832-1905)

Something to Ponder

It is easier to build a boy than to mend a man.

Here’s a Fact

Names of Abram and his relatives Serug, Nahor, Terah are not merely Old Testament names, but names that also appear in Old Assyrian and Babylonian texts from the same time as Abram.


"Do not say, 'I'll do to him as he has done to me; I'll pay that man back for what he did.' "
-Proverbs 24:29

Coach’s Corner

Sometimes you know you are in God’s will because things work out so smoothly. Other times you know you are in God’s will because of the continuous difficulty and opposition you face.

2 Thessalonians 1
New International Version (NIV)
Paul, Silas and Timothy,
To the church of the Thessalonians in God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ:
Grace and peace to you from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
Thanksgiving and Prayer
We ought always to thank God for you, brothers and sisters, and rightly so, because your faith is growing more and more, and the love all of you have for one another is increasing. Therefore, among God’s churches we boast about your perseverance and faith in all the persecutions and trials you are enduring.
All this is evidence that God’s judgment is right, and as a result you will be counted worthy of the kingdom of God, for which you are suffering. God is just: He will pay back trouble to those who trouble you and give relief to you who are troubled, and to us as well. This will happen when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven in blazing fire with his powerful angels. He will punish those who do not know God and do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. They will be punished with everlasting destruction and shut out from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of his might 10 on the day he comes to be glorified in his holy people and to be marveled at among all those who have believed. This includes you, because you believed our testimony to you.
11 With this in mind, we constantly pray for you, that our God may make you worthy of his calling, and that by his power he may bring to fruition your every desire for goodness and your every deed prompted by faith. 12 We pray this so that the name of our Lord Jesus may be glorified in you, and you in him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ.
John 10:1-21
New International Version (NIV)
The Good Shepherd and His Sheep
10 “Very truly I tell you Pharisees, anyone who does not enter the sheep pen by the gate, but climbs in by some other way, is a thief and a robber. The one who enters by the gate is the shepherd of the sheep. The gatekeeper opens the gate for him, and the sheep listen to his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. When he has brought out all his own, he goes on ahead of them, and his sheep follow him because they know his voice. But they will never follow a stranger; in fact, they will run away from him because they do not recognize a stranger’s voice.” Jesus used this figure of speech, but the Pharisees did not understand what he was telling them.
Therefore Jesus said again, “Very truly I tell you, I am the gate for the sheep. All who have come before me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep have not listened to them. I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved. They will come in and go out, and find pasture. 10 The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.
11 “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. 12 The hired hand is not the shepherd and does not own the sheep. So when he sees the wolf coming, he abandons the sheep and runs away. Then the wolf attacks the flock and scatters it. 13 The man runs away because he is a hired hand and cares nothing for the sheep.
14 “I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me— 15 just as the Father knows me and I know the Father—and I lay down my life for the sheep. 16 I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen. I must bring them also. They too will listen to my voice, and there shall be one flock and one shepherd. 17 The reason my Father loves me is that I lay down my life—only to take it up again. 18 No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again. This command I received from my Father.”
19 The Jews who heard these words were again divided. 20 Many of them said, “He is demon-possessed and raving mad. Why listen to him?”
21 But others said, “These are not the sayings of a man possessed by a demon. Can a demon open the eyes of the blind?”

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