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Friday, March 29, 2019

Sunset on Delaware Bay (Photo by Duke)
Sunset on Delaware Bay
(Photo by Duke, Click on photo to enlarge)

"Set For Life"

Message summary: Is "everything we need" that was absolutely sufficient for Peter's original readers also sufficient for us who live in 2019? A billion times yes!!! In Christ we are set for life and eternity!

Listen to our message on your audio player.

"Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed" (Luke 12:15). "His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and goodness" (2 Peter 1:3).

During my visit to New York state last weekend we were in a very depressed area with many people living on various forms of "public assistance". It's a sad way to live for many reasons and yet, in our observation, it's often accompanied by poor choices in life.

I stopped in at a convenience store to buy a cup of coffee and waited behind a woman who was mulling over how to buy the right lottery tickets in a "game" called "Set For Life". She pulled out some $50.00 bills to "invest" in her quest for success.

"Set For Life" is a cruel lie to promote, especially since it comes from a morally bankrupt government preying on people already wrecking their lives with a promise of an easy way out. Here in Pennsylvania it seems wherever you go you see lottery sales and advertisements for playing the lottery along with advertisements for problem gamblers. There are many lottery ticket vending machines.

Many years ago I had a conversation with a longtime employee of the state welfare department who assured me from experience that the social costs of the state sponsored gambling ring are much greater than any "profits" the state makes and uses for "good causes". One method of deception used in the lottery is that people are able to choose how they want their money distributed when they place their bet or they're supposed to see their bet as an "investment". So many aspire to "winning" the lottery and other forms of gambling. They see the jackpot as the answer to their problems with cruel deceptions like "set for life".

What a contrast to the Lord's straightforward instruction in our first daily verse. "Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed."

Jesus continues to warn those who will listen: "Watch out!" That should get our attention. It means "to discern clearly". We sure need that don't we? What crass lack of discernment is used by those who stand in long lines hoping their "investment" will bring them the illusory pot of gold promised by the lottery. Of course, there are many other forms of greed that can overtake us so we must be on guard lest we fall prey to the devil's trap.

Greed is an insidious form of idolatry (Colossians 3:5), which many maturing believers battle against. The world screams in our ears in a variety of ways, "YOU DON'T HAVE ENOUGH!"

But God says in His Word, "My grace is sufficient" (2 Corinthians 12:9), "My God will meet all your needs according to the riches of His glory in Christ Jesus" (Philippians 4:19) and "His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness" (2 Peter 1:3). I especially find richness in the phrase "everything we need". Who will you believe today?

Is the "everything we need" that was absolutely sufficient for Peter's original readers also sufficient for us who live in 2019? A billion times yes!!! In Christ we are set for life here and now and for all eternity.

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Praying manDaily prayer: Father, when we place our trust in You we've only begun to tap into the unlimited resources You make available to the believer. You have blessed us with Your special favor and Your unsurpassed peace and it only gets better and better as we grow to know You more and more. The illumination of Your Word is truly a lamp unto our feet and a light unto our path revealing the mystery of Your Gospel to us. May we be found consistent from day to day growing in the grace and knowledge You give to us in the midst of varying daily experiences of life. Grow us in our discernment and help us to stay on our guard against greed in its various forms. It is in Christ's name that we pray. Amen.

Many years ago I preached a message about gambling and shared this daily encouragement message titled "Pleasing The Lord".

Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

"Everything We Need"  Video  Acappella

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Scripture references are from The Holy Bible: New International Version. © 1984 by International Bible Society; NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1995 by The Lockman Foundation, New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. and the King James Version.

Personal Mission Statement: "I am created by God to bring Him glory. Through God's Son Jesus Christ I have been redeemed and make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."

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