An Odd Prescription [Podcast]

Mark 2:1-12

We tend to come to God primarily for physical needs—which He is willing to meet—but our relationship with Him is His first concern.

A few friends brought their friend to Jesus for healing, but Jesus’ odd prescription revealed a deeper need.

I’m So Sure

If you’ve ever felt the sting of a scorpion, you and I share a common awe at how something so small can produce a sting so painful. I get the same feeling from reading Obadiah, the shortest book in the Old Testament. Written to ancient Edom east of the Jordan River, Obadiah gives a stinging rebuke to the sin of pride.

Petra—the Lost and Found City of Wonder

(Photo: The Treasury facade at Petra, Jordan—the area of ancient Edom)

The geography of Edom provided an almost impenetrable fortress. Invading armies could enter only by snaking through difficult mountain passes. This location gave the people of Edom great national security and led to some colossal arrogance on their part. “The pride of your heart has deceived you,” the Lord told them, “you who live in the clefts of the rocks and make your home on the heights” (Obadiah 1:3, NIV).

The Edomites’ misplaced pride would later become their undoing.

Applying Edom’s Flaw To Our Lives

Edom’s geography bears a resemblance to our affluence today. Our self-reliant culture crows:

  • “Never take guff!”
  • “Depend on no one!”
  • “Save face at all costs!”

Pride alone fuels this counsel. When we feel self-secure, we sense no need for anything or anyone else—even God. Our physical resources tempt us to reject any external influence in our lives. But as the Lord told the Edomites, such an attitude smacks of overconfidence: “The pride of your heart has deceived you.”

Boasting is the voice of pride in the heart of the strong. Self-pity is the voice of pride in the heart of the weak. —John Piper

Just as arrogance would displace the Edomites, so our pride will betray us unless we walk with God in humility (see Micah 6:8). God never created us to live in independence from Him, but in dependence on Him. Our model of humility? The One who is gentle and humble of heart (Matthew 11:29). What an honor to rely on the Lord of whom alone we boast . . . and from whom alone we receive all we need.

If we’re honest, we have to confess that the last stronghold in our hearts is defended by pride.

Going Places with God- A Devotional Journey Through the Lands of the BibleLike This Post? Get the Whole Book!

This post is adapted from Wayne’s book, Going Places with God: A Devotional Journey Through the Lands of the Bible.
• These 90 devotional readings, each based on a specific place in the lands of the Bible, will help you apply the truths of God’s Word to your daily journey of faith.
• You’ll enjoy pertinent Scripture, inspirational quotes, photographs, maps, and a daily prayer.

After going places with God, you’ll never be the same.

CLICK TO GET YOUR AUTOGRAPHED COPY

Keeping First Things First-Thing [Podcast]

Mark 1:14-39

Feeling distracted these days? Even Christ didn’t do everything but He did do what He was called to do. Jesus’ top priority was preaching. Many distractions—which God also uses for His plans—but you can spend a whole ministry on physical needs.

Through time with the Father focus is realigned and legitimate needs are left undone.

Gotta Serve Somebody [Podcast]

Mark 1:1-13

Even though John the Baptist had crowds thronging to him he viewed himself as a servant who exalted Christ: “I am not fit to untie His sandals.”

Jesus’ own silent example reveals that the life of God’s servant finds itself pleasing to God, led by the Holy Spirit, tempted by Satan, and assisted by angels.

A Single-Hearted Devotion [Podcast]

1 Corinthians 7

As with all stages of life, being single provides unique opportunities. The married person has a divided devotion– but the single has the unparalleled privilege of serving God with a single-hearted devotion.

Even if one doesn’t have the gift of singleness, the believer’s task is not the quest for a mate– but serving God to the full potential of their singleness.