John 3:16 Arrow For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life ^DREAM interpretation ministry




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The Word For Today-A Daily Update
TODAY'S WORD FOR TODAY

Start a journal of your spiritual journey


‘Moses wrote all the words of the LORD. And he rose early in the morning, and built an altar.’
Exodus 24:4 NKJV

The UCB Word for Today - 16 Jan 2018

One of the secrets of Moses’ great success in life was this: he spent time each day with God, and he wrote down what God told him. And you should do that too.

Here’s why. Writing
a) clarifies your thoughts;
b) gives you a permanent record you can refer back to;
c) allows you to measure your progress.

We only remember what we take time to record. One of the best-known American missionaries was Jim Elliot, who became a martyr for Christ in 1956 in Ecuador.

He kept a spiritual journal, and it makes interesting reading: ‘My devotional reading pattern was broken. I have never restored it…prayer as a single man was difficult…now it’s too hard to get out of bed in the morning…I’ve made resolutions on this score before now, but not followed them up.’

Such writings become a mirror that reflects your true spiritual condition – a condition it’s easy to forget unless it’s staring you in the face each day. Elliot, like all of us, struggled with the spiritual disciplines.

But unlike most of us, he kept a written record of his spiritual defeats as well as his spiritual victories. Keeping such a journal will force you to reflect on your heart’s true condition, record your progress, regain your lost momentum, reject your bad habits, reinforce your good habits, and help you to reach your spiritual goals.

Do you know any other discipline that offers such benefits? No? Then start a journal of your spiritual journey today.

Genesis 33-35, Matthew 10:1-16
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TODAY'S WORD FOR TODAY

The difference between Samson and Samuel (1)


‘Time would fail me to tell of…Samson…and Samuel.’
Hebrews 11:32 NKJV

The UCB Word for Today - 17 Jan 2018

Samson and Samuel are mentioned in the same Scripture, but there are big differences between them. You ask, ‘Why should I be interested?’ Because as a Christian, you are like them.

Each had a miraculous birth, so they’re a picture of those who’ve been born again and called to serve God. Paul writes, ‘These things happened to them as examples, and they were written for our admonition…Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall’ (1 Corinthians 10:11-12 NKJV).

Difference one: Finances. Samson was greedy and manipulating, whereas Samuel practised integrity.

One day Samson bet thirty Philistine princes that they couldn’t solve his riddle, saying, ‘If you cannot explain it to me, then you shall give me thirty linen garments and thirty changes of clothing’ (Judges 14:13 NKJV). Quite a wardrobe, eh?

Samson’s emphasis was ‘you shall give me’. He’s an example of Christians in business who discredit the cause of Christ by unethical practices, and those in ministry who twist the Scriptures and resort to emotional manipulation to raise money.

The world is watching, so let’s heed the Scripture: ‘Provide things honest in the sight of all men’ (Romans 12:17 KJV). Samuel was totally different.

After forty years of his exemplary leadership, the people paid this tribute to him: ‘You have not cheated or oppressed us’ (1 Samuel 12:4 NKJV).

When others can say that about you, you did it right! Jesus said, ‘Where your treasure is, there will your heart be also’ (Matthew 6:21 KJV).

The condition of your heart is revealed in how you handle finances.

Genesis 36-38, Matthew 1:17-42
TODAY'S WORD FOR TODAY

The difference between Samson and Samuel (2)


‘Get her for me, for she pleases me well.’
Judges 14:3 NKJV

The UCB Word for Today - 18 Jan 2018

Difference two: Relationships. ‘Then his father and mother said to him, “Is there no woman among the daughters of your brethren…that you must go and get a wife from the uncircumcised Philistines?”

And Samson said to his father, “Get her for me, for she pleases me well.”’ When it came to relationships, Samson was guided by his lower impulses instead of the principles of God’s Word.

And he paid dearly for it. Three times we read in Scripture: ‘Samson went down’ (v. 1 NKJV). He went down to Timnath and married the wrong woman.

He went down to Gaza and spent the night with a harlot. He went down to Sorek, ended up in the lap of Delilah, and lost his strength, his freedom, his reputation, his anointing, and his life.

Samuel, on the other hand, was raised up to purify the ministry. Eli the High Priest had two sons called Hophni and Phinehas that he had ordained to the priesthood, but they were taking bribes to cover sin and brazenly consorting with prostitutes.

There’s a lesson here for every redeemed child of God: ‘Do not be yoked together with unbelievers’ (2 Corinthians 6:14 NIV 2011 Edition). Is God being biased or unloving?

No, He’s being protective! When you’re ‘yoked together’ in a relationship with someone who doesn’t share your faith, your values, your goals, and your priorities, you end up in a tug of war with each pulling in a different direction.

When problems arise, as they surely will, what you need is someone by your side who turns to the same source you do for the solution - God.

Genesis 39-40, Matthew 11
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12:1-21TODAY'S WORD FOR TODAY

The difference between Samson and Samuel (3)


‘The LORD your God was your king.’
1 Samuel 12:12 NKJV

The UCB Word for Today - 19 Jan 2018

Difference three: Motives. Samson repeatedly dishonoured the Lord by his actions and his lifestyle.

That’s because he had no regard for God’s honour. What a contrast Samuel was!

When Israel wanted a king in order to be like all the surrounding nations, it broke his heart. He said to the people, ‘The LORD your God was your king.’

Honouring God was his highest priority. And there’s a lesson here for us, especially those in ministry. Every time someone steps behind a pulpit, they must check their ego and ask themselves the motive question: ‘Is my aim to make God look good, or myself look good?’

And it’s a hard question to answer. The Bible says, ‘For the LORD is the God of knowledge; and by Him actions are weighed’ (1 Samuel 2:3 NKJV).

The truth is that without the power of God’s indwelling Spirit, none of us have what it takes to do the job, and we must never forget that. The tragedy of Samson’s end is described in these two Scriptures:

‘He awoke from his sleep, and said, “I will go out as before, at other times, and shake myself free!” But he did not know that the LORD had departed from him’ (Judges 16:20 NKJV).

‘So it happened, when their hearts were merry, that they said, “Call for Samson, that he may perform for us.” So they called for Samson from the prison, and he performed for them’ (v. 25 NKJV).

Note the word perform. Without God’s grace and power we are all, at best, just performers. So stay humble, and seek only to exalt the Lord.

Genesis 41-42, Matthew


12:1-21TODAY'S WORD FOR TODAY

The difference between Samson and Samuel (3)


‘The LORD your God was your king.’
1 Samuel 12:12 NKJV

The UCB Word for Today - 19 Jan 2018

Difference three: Motives. Samson repeatedly dishonoured the Lord by his actions and his lifestyle.

That’s because he had no regard for God’s honour. What a contrast Samuel was!

When Israel wanted a king in order to be like all the surrounding nations, it broke his heart. He said to the people, ‘The LORD your God was your king.’

Honouring God was his highest priority. And there’s a lesson here for us, especially those in ministry. Every time someone steps behind a pulpit, they must check their ego and ask themselves the motive question: ‘Is my aim to make God look good, or myself look good?’

And it’s a hard question to answer. The Bible says, ‘For the LORD is the God of knowledge; and by Him actions are weighed’ (1 Samuel 2:3 NKJV).

The truth is that without the power of God’s indwelling Spirit, none of us have what it takes to do the job, and we must never forget that. The tragedy of Samson’s end is described in these two Scriptures:

‘He awoke from his sleep, and said, “I will go out as before, at other times, and shake myself free!” But he did not know that the LORD had departed from him’ (Judges 16:20 NKJV).

‘So it happened, when their hearts were merry, that they said, “Call for Samson, that he may perform for us.” So they called for Samson from the prison, and he performed for them’ (v. 25 NKJV).

Note the word perform. Without God’s grace and power we are all, at best, just performers. So stay humble, and seek only to exalt the Lord.

Genesis 41-42, Matthew
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TODAY'S WORD FOR TODAY

The difference between Samson and Samuel (4)


‘Thus far the LORD has helped us.’
1 Samuel 7:12 NKJV

The UCB Word for Today - 20 Jan 2018

Difference four: Accountability. Samson had an independent attitude and refused to be accountable to anyone else.

He was a ‘lone ranger’ who refused to work with others. And his erratic attempts at deliverance caused the Philistines to tax God’s people more and make their burdens heavier.

Samuel, on the other hand, worked in consensus with others. When he prayed and God gave Israel a spectacular victory over their enemies, he refused to take any of the credit.

‘Then Samuel took a stone and set it up between Mizpeh and Shen, and called its name Ebenezer, saying, “Thus far has the LORD helped us.”’ Samson was ‘me’ focused, but Samuel was ‘us’ focused.

The psalmist said, ‘Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity…for there the LORD commanded the blessing’ (Psalm 133:1, 3 NKJV). The secret of walking in God’s blessing is not to operate alone, but cooperate with others.

That’s how the New Testament church did it. ‘When they had further threatened them, they let them go…And being let go, they went to their own companions’ (Acts 4:21 23 NKJV).

When the apostles came under attack, ‘they went to their own companions’. They had relationships in place with those who knew how to advise and guide them, strengthen and encourage them, pray and share God’s Word with them.

You need such relationships too! And you can’t afford to wait until trouble comes before you establish them. Do it now, in the good times, and they’ll be there for you in the bad times.

Genesis 43-45, Matthew 12:22-50
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