Sunday Scriptures — Our Founding Fathers Prayed

In Billy Graham’s devotional book, Hope for Each Day, he mentions a time at the early beginnings of the formation of the United States of America during a meeting of the Continental Congress in Philadelphia. The purpose was the ratification of the constitution.

The delegates to the Congress became angry with each other, and because they could not resolve their conflicts or agree on anything at all, the delegates gathered their belongings and headed for the door.

Reminds me of the attitude children have when they can’t get there way. If I don’t get my way, then I’ll take my ball and go home.

Fortunately for our country, one man had enough sense to offer the correct solution.

Benjamin Franklin spoke to the delegates. It is reported these were his words.

Wait a minute, gentlemen. This country was conceived in faith in God. Many of us here believe in prayer. Let us get upon our knees and pray to Almighty God and see whether God shall give to us the answer to our dilemma.

The delegates to the Constitutional Convention put aside their differences, and for the good of our country surrendered their egos to God, got on their knees and prayed. The Constitution of the United States of America was the result of their prayers.

We have no lesser challenge today.

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Then if my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and restore their land. 2 Chronicles 7:14 (NLT)

I wish you well.

Sandy

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Sunday Scriptures — Spiritual Warfare

By Sandy Kirby Quandt

In the book, Peace With God, Billy Graham states Christians have three distinct dangerous, vicious enemies who will use any method to defeat us in our Christian life; Satan, the world, and the flesh. So, we must be prepared to ward them off.

First off, Satan. We know he was defeated at the cross by Jesus, but he still has power to influence us toward sin. Just look at the names the Bible gives him. The wicked one. Devil. Murderer. Liar, and the father of lies. Adversary who seeks to devour. Serpent. Accuser of the brethren, and other none flattering titles.

Satan is not happy when anyone gives their life to Christ. In fact, it makes him really mad. Billy Graham says we shouldn’t rely on our feelings, because that’s where Satan attacks first. He’ll do whatever he can to tempt us and lead us into sin, to make us doubt, to discourage, and disappoint. Satan might tempt us by making us feel proud and important to make us confident in our our powers, instead of trusting in God.

There are a lot of ways the deceiver can tempt us; jealousy, hatred, envy. The father of all lies would like nothing more than for us to follow his example and become liars and lead others astray. He is powerful, crafty, and subtle. He is called the god of this world, the prince of this world, and the prince of the power of the air.

In his book Mr. Graham told a story regarding Satan’s attacks.

Years ago I heard my friend J. Edwin Orr compare the Christian attacked by Satan to a mouse being attacked by a housewife wielding a broom. The mouse does not sit there contemplating the housewife or the broom. It is busy looking for a hole — a way to escape. So we Christians under satanic attack should look for our “way of escape.”

He goes further to say, “The devil will tremble when you pray. He will be defeated when you quote or read a passage of Scripture to him, and will leave you when you resist him.”

Next, among our enemies is the world. Mr. Graham said when anyone asks him how to know what is “okay” to do, and what isn’t he tells them to “earnestly and prayerfully ask, ‘What would Christ have me to do?’ ‘Can I ask His blessing upon this particular thing for me?’ ‘What would Christ think about my amusements, recreation, books, companions, and television programs?’ ‘Could I ask Christ to go along with me to this particular event?’ Being omnipresent, He’ll be there anyway. The point is, should you?”

He continues by saying, “This does not mean that in society we are snobs or have a superiority complex, lest we be in danger of spiritual pride — which would be far worse than any worldliness. But today there are so many professing Christians who are walking hand in hand with the world that you cannot tell the difference between the Christian and the unbeliever. This should never be.”

Lastly, Mr. Graham addresses the third enemy we face; the lust of the flesh, which he calls that evil tendency of your inward self. “It is the battle of the self-life and the Christ-life. This old nature cannot please God. It cannot be converted, or even patched up. Thank God, when Jesus died He took you with Him, and the old nature can be made inoperative and you can “reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin” (Romans 6:11). This is done by faith.

Aren’t we glad we don’t have to fight these battles alone?

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For we are not fighting against human beings but against the wicked spiritual forces in the heavenly world, the rulers, authorities, and cosmic powers of this dark age. Ephesians 6:12 (GNT)

I wish you well.

Sandy

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Sunday Scriptures — Is The Righteous Judge to Blame?

by Sandy Kirby Quandt

Have you ever been asked how a loving God could send people to hell? Whenever I’m asked that question, I say, “God doesn’t send people to hell. People choose where they’ll spend eternity.” God provided a way for us to be saved through his Son Jesus. As the Righteous Judge, God isn’t to blame if we choose not to accept the gift of salvation he offers.

In one of Billy Graham’s devotions in his devotional, Hope for Each Day, Mr. Graham asks who’s to blame; the judge for sentencing the criminal, or the criminal for committing the crime? He goes on to ask if someone deliberately commits a crime and is caught, is the judge to blame for sentencing the criminal, or is the criminal to blame for the sentence he receives?

Yes. The judge is the one who hands down the sentence, but he did so by following the law. The judge is not the one who broke the law.

God, The Righteous Judge, like the earthly judge, hands down the sentence and consequences we, the criminals, deserve. When we break God’s laws, we can’t blame him for the punishment we receive. It’s our fault we sinned, not God’s.

But thanks be to God. When we belong to Jesus and claim him as our Lord and Savior, we don’t have to pay the penalty for our sins. Jesus took our debt upon his perfect sinless self and paid the debt we owed but could never pay with his blood sacrifice on the cross of Calvary.

We deserve the punishment, but the Righteous Judge made a way for us to be spared by not sparing his own son.

God loved the world so much he sent his only son to this world to die a horrible death for us. As the Righteous Judge, God is not to blame if we don’t accept his perfect gift.

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For God did not send His Son into the world to say it is guilty. He sent His Son so the world might be saved from the punishment of sin by Him. John 3:17 (NLV)

I wish you well.

Sandy

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Sunday Scriptures — VIP

Isaiahby Sandy Kirby Quandt

For Christmas this past December one of the gifts my son, Pie, gave me was Billy Graham’s Hope for Each Day Morning and Evening Devotions.

It’s a rather hefty-sized book of 755 devotions. One for the morning. One for the evening. Hence, the title. 🙂

Three years ago I wrote a blog post about a way cool VIP tour Pilot and I took of the Space Shuttle mock-up at Johnson Space Center. I found it interesting the January 6 morning devotion in Hope for Each Day titled, “Vision, Integrity, Presence” takes our concept of VIP and looks at it in a different way. A God-honoring way.

I’d like to share what Billy Graham said in his devotional.

  • V: VISION means seeing what can be done, what ought to be done, and how to get it done.
  • I:  INTEGRITY means a person is the same on the inside as he or she appears on the outside.
  • P:  PRESENCE means having God’s presence in our lives.

There you go. VIP. Vision, integrity, and presence. When we keep those three words in their proper perspective in our lives, I believe we will indeed become a true VIP – very important person – in the eyes of the One whose opinion truly matters.

How do you live with vision, integrity, and presence?

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Where there is ignorance of God, crime runs wild; but what a wonderful thing it is for a nation to know and keep his laws. Proverbs 29:18 (TLB)

I wish you well.

Sandy

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