I Timothy 6:1-5 What kind of worker are you? Are you a worker who counts his employer worthy of all honor? Or do you work thinking that you really know more than the boss does? The first two verses admonish us to honor our employer. This command has its basis in the fifth commandment. The first verse also gives the reason. It is not just because we will get further ahead if we esteem our boss highly. It is because when we honor the boss, we honor God and His name. When we do not honor those in authority over us, we bring discredit to God’s very name. What a shame! Let us not walk in that way; let us walk in a way pleasing to God. Sing or read Psalter 26.
I Timothy 6:6-10 Are you content to be godly? That can be a hard thing sometimes.
When we make decisions based on godliness, we do not always get to do what we wish. We are not always able to please ourselves. We must be content with the necessities of this life, not the niceties. This can be hard in a world full of consumerism. This can be hard when others around us seem to have things much nicer than we do. We must just stop and say, if I do such a thing it is not godly for me and therefore I must not do it. It’s not easy, but there is the great gain we are promised by God. Sing or read Psalter 201 especially stanzas 1, and 5-7.
I Timothy 6:11-16 Are you fighting the fight of faith, young people? Every time you make a decision to do a certain thing you must fight the fight of faith. We must, you know. We cannot ignore the fight of faith when it is not convenient to battle. No soldier goes to war with that attitude. It is only when we are continually fighting that we can have the confidence of appearing before Christ unblamable. Like walking a godly walk, fighting the fight of faith is not easy but there is a great reward. Sing or read Psalter 202.
I Timothy 6:17-21 In the last verses of this chapter the Holy Spirit through Paul exhorts Timothy to keep that which is committed to his trust. What about us? Most of us have been brought up in the church and have been educated in covenant schools. Those of us who have been engrafted into the church later in life have also been entrusted with a great trust. What are we doing with it? What about tonight as we seek entertainment? Will it be entertainment that is worthy of those who have been committed with keeping a great inheritance? Will we disregard our birthright for a few hours of pleasure tonight? Keep that which is committed to you and receive the great gain that is promised by God. Sing or read Psalter 322.
Genesis 1:1-8 Genesis is the book of beginnings. Even the name indicates that truth. Throughout the book you find ideas such as creation, redemption, and the covenant to name a few. In these few verses we find that all things began with God. We read, “And God said…” Do you believe it? You had better because your salvation is based on that idea. Only by the almighty power of God are you saved. That is a truth that is begun in Genesis and finished in time. There is no other way for us. Sing or read Psalter 128.
Genesis 1:9-13 Have you ever considered how many types of plants there are in the world? Do you look for the parables found in them? Plants bring forth fruit. Some more than others, and some in different forms and amounts. But there is fruit there. Even thorns and thistles have their fruit. People bring forth fruit as well. Sometimes because of sin the fruit is not very abundant. The reprobate brings forth his fruit. We read “by their fruit ye shall know them.” Consider the plants and learn about the kingdom of heaven. Sing or read Psalter 220 especially stanzas 3-6.
Genesis 1:14-19; Psalm 8:3-4 When you look into the skies at night, can you not be impressed with the work of God’s hand? Do you doubt His greatness and power? Do you still think that you need to help God with your salvation? The moon, stars, and planets speak volumes about God. Saturn’s rings when viewed through a telescope leave me in awe about the majesty of our God. God’s creation speaks; using God’s word we must listen. We must also confess, “O Lord our Lord, how excellent is thy name in all the earth!” Sing or read Psalter 15.
Genesis 1:20-26 God gave the same command to all living creatures. “Be fruitful and multiply.” To the elect He gave this command because in that way He would be glorified by covenant seed being brought into this world and gathered into His kingdom. Are you considering that, young people? Do you date with a view to being married? Do you date with the view to being married to a godly spouse? Do you date with the view to dedicating your life to the covenant seed with whom God is pleased to give you – be they one or a quiver full? Children are not a nuisance; they are a great reward to godly parents. How do you view God’s command to “be fruitful and multiply”? Sing or read Psalter 359 especially stanzas 3 and 4.
Genesis 1:27-31 “It was good.” Could it be any other way? God pronounced His creation good. This was not pride; it was a statement of fact. Who are we to say that God did not speak and things were made? Who are we to say it took millions of years for this earth to come to its present state? Why don’t we want a God who is all powerful? If we don’t, we don’t want a God powerful enough to rescue us from our sins either. We must believe in creation to find any comfort in salvation. Why? Because God said it was good! Sing or read Psalter 287.
Matthew 6:1-4 Matthew 5-7 comprise the chapters which are often called the “Sermon on the Mount.” We really should know them by the title “The Sermon about the Kingdom and Its Citizens” because these chapters give us instruction on how we must act because we are citizens of the kingdom of heaven. Today’s verses give instruction on giving. You do give to kingdom’s causes, do you not? Liberal giving is expected of all citizens. Why, you may ask? Not so men notice but we give as an expression of thankfulness for the gift of salvation. How thankful are we? Sing or read Psalter 137 especially stanzas 1, 2, and 6.
Matthew 6:5-13 Prayer is the beautiful way in which God has given to us opportunity to talk to Him. Do you do it? Do you do it often? When we pray, we must pray to our heavenly Father who knows all things and does all things. Prayers, like the incense of the Old Testament, smell sweet because they pass through Christ who makes intercession for us with the Father. We must pray, and as Paul writes we must “pray without ceasing.” As citizens of God’s kingdom let us take advantage of the means of communication we have with our King, and let us be thankful in and for all things. Sing or read Psalter 9.
Matthew 6:14-18 Forgiveness is a wonderful thing. It is wonderful because by it two friends can be reconciled with each other and find the joy that fellowship brings. We must be quick to forgive our Christian brothers and sisters. We also must be quick to seek forgiveness from them. “Why?” we might ask. We seek and give forgiveness because our Father, the King, has forgiven us. What further example do we need! Forgiveness brings the peace and unity which has been lost back into the church. Forgiveness is a true mark of true citizens of the heavenly kingdom. Sing or read Psalter 61.
Matthew 6:19-24 How healthy is your savings account? No, I do not mean the one that you have in the bank around the corner. How is your spiritual savings account? Do you have treasures in heaven? Are you seeking to live spiritually so that you can appear before God with these treasures? No, these treasures will not get you into heaven. Only Christ can do that. But yet we are commanded to lay up spiritual treasures in heaven. We can only do that by living a life that is committed to the King of the heavenly kingdom. We can only do that by serving God with our lives. We cannot serve Satan in this life and God in the one to come. Our spiritual treasures come with us either into heaven or into hell. Sing or read Psalter 69.
Matthew 6:25-30 Girls and women, have you ever desired a dress the color of a certain flower, and then were unable to match that color exactly? You never will, you know. God colors the flowers, and His colors are unable to be matched. But that is a comfort as well. Even as God cares for every flower, He cares for every citizen of His kingdom. Sometimes as fathers we worry about how we are going to provide the necessities of life for our families. These verses tell us such worry is foolish. We have more important things to worry about. We need to be concerned about the spiritual welfare of our families. Food, shelter, and clothing will be provided for us by the King. Take thought about spiritual necessities and let the King provide for our physical lives. Sing or read Psalter 94 especially stanzas 1-4.
Matthew 6:31-34 Are you seeking the kingdom of God first? The key word in that question is first, you know. It is not enough to seek God; we must seek Him first all of the time. When we make any decision in our lives, we must make sure that the decision is in harmony with the characteristics of true citizens of the kingdom. When we are given money from any source, we must first seek the needs of Kingdom causes. When we do this, we can be assured that we will receive the blessing of the King. Our use of our selves, our time, and our money must always be guided by the principle of seeking God’s kingdom first. Sing or read Psalter 354 especially stanzas 1, 2, 4, and 6.
Psalm 55:1-7 David is troubled because of enemies who bothered him during his life. We, too, have things that bother us. Do we cry unto God as David did? Do we stop and make it a point of prayer to ask for deliverance from the troublesome things of this life? Like us sometimes, David wanted to get away from it all. This is not always possible or profitable. All things in this life are for our good. We must go to our God in prayer and ask for grace to bear with our afflictions. He will answer because He is good. Sing or read Psalter 150.
Psalm 55:8-16 As we read further in this Psalm we discover that the incident that prompts it was David fleeing from his own son Absalom. In verses 12-14 he mourns the fact that Ahithophel had betrayed the trust that they had together. Once again we see that man’s wishes are not always God’s. David would have preferred that the friendship continue. God determined that it would not. Are we willing to accept God’s determination for incidents in our lives? Are we willing to confess that “all things work together for the good of them that love God”? David did. Read verse 16 again and see for yourself. Sing or read Psalter 260 especially stanzas 1-4.
Psalm 55:17-23 David found answer to his troubles. Once again he thanks God for the answer to his many prayers. He prayed and God answered. We must pray, and God will answer. Let’s look at the answer in verse 22. The answer is a command to us. We must cast all our cares upon Jehovah. We do it with the confidence that He will hear and help us. What a comfort that is! This life is full of trouble and afflictions, but yet our God is able to care for us. We do not need to fear destruction when we have the promise that He will never suffer the righteous to be moved. What a blessing that only the child of God has! Are you casting your cares upon Him? Are you really doing it, or do you think you must share the load? Sing or read Psalter 329.
James 2:1-9 How do you treat your brothers and sisters in the faith? Do you treat them all the same, or do you play favorites? James gives to us instruction in this matter. The instruction of the Holy Spirit is to show partiality to no one. The basis for such instruction is that God shows no partiality, and we shouldn’t either. God has taken us – poor wretched sinners – and has given us all the benefits of His kingdom. What kind of gratitude do we show when we scorn our brothers and sisters in Christ? We do not keep God’s law when we ignore anyone whom God has gathered into His church. Sing or read Psalter 370.
James 2:10-13 Do you pick which of God’s commandments you wish to keep? Are some easier to keep than others? Do you keep some of the commandments some of the time? James tells us that this is impossible. When we break one of the commandments, we break them all. When we break one of the commandments, we destroy the completeness of God’s law. We must be holy because God who gave us the commandments is holy. Sing or read Psalter 40 especially stanzas 1, 2, 5, and 6.
James 2:14-26 Is being a Christian enough? Will you get to heaven just because you attend church most of the time or were born into a family that believes in God? No, it takes more than that. First of all there is the matter of faith. Faith is that gift of God which He gives to the elect. But then He commands that faith to be active. Why? That faith must be active in order to show gratitude for salvation. That faith is active as it works out salvation. Gratitude comes from the heart. It is not legislated or forced from the child of God. You are either thankful for salvation and show it, or you are not thankful and show that. When you have a lively faith, then you will receive the same assurance of Abraham or Rahab. Anything else only shows a dead person. Sing or read Psalter 79.
Amos 3:1-3 Who are your friends? Look at verse 3. Verse three states most assuredly that the child of God can have no friendships outside of those in the covenant. Anything else will lead to disaster. Young people, as you look for your mates in this world, are you looking for someone who agrees with you in faith? Don’t be sidetracked by someone who shares your worldly interests or desires. You have to walk through life with your spouse; make sure that he or she is someone who agrees with you in faith. Your rewards and joys will be plenty. Sing or read Psalter 156.
Amos 3:4-8 Reread verse 8. What do you think of those words? They give to us much responsibility. We have been blessed with the word of God. What are we doing with it? Are we telling it to the nations? Are we telling it to our neighbors? We must not hide the word of God from those around us. We must use it even if it means our discomfort. God has given us a tremendous treasure, but He has also given us a tremendous responsibility. Sing or read Psalter 175.
Amos 3:9-15 God had made the ten tribes of Israel his chosen people. They had rebelled against Him and had walked in their own way. Amos was called to preach judgment against these rebels. Their punishment was sure. They were going to be cut off in their generations. Their land was to be desolate, and their children were going to be taken captive. God will do the same to us if we rebel. When we deliberately walk in ways other than His, He will bring judgment upon us. That judgment will be both in this life and the life to come. Walk, people of God, in His ways and be blessed. Sing or read Psalter 166 especially stanzas 1-3.
I John 1:1-4 Is your joy full, young people? It will be if you do the things of these verses. The main impact of these verses is that we have fellowship with the Father and the Son. This can only be when we hear and see and follow the Word of life. It is a word that is far better than anything in the world. No word of man can compare with its greatness. Walk in and by that Word, and your lives will be full of joy! This is not my word or even John’s word. This is the word and promise of the Holy Spirit! Sing or read Psalter 270.
I John 1:5-10 Walking in the Light! What a joy! Are you walking in that light and experiencing the joy? How is that done? We see the two opposites – light and darkness. We need no clearer picture of the antithesis. God is light. We must walk in that light all of the time. It is that simple. Are we doing it? Sing or read Psalter 71 especially stanzas 1 and 3.
Psalm 4 Will you sleep in peace tonight? Will you lie down and close your eyes without a care for danger? David could. David knew danger. He knew what it was like to have enemies chase him. He knew what it was like to be bothered by sin. But yet he could confess that he could sleep. He could do this because he had confidence that Jehovah was watching over him. Do we have that confidence? We should. If we do not, we must pray and ask Jehovah to show us that he makes us to dwell in safety. Sing or read Psalter 5.
Psalm 15 How do we measure up with the man of verses 2-5? These verses give a description of a citizen of the kingdom of heaven. As we read through them, we see areas in which we fall short. What are we going to do about those areas? Notice the assurance in the last sentence. He that is the man who dwells in the courts of the Lord will never be moved. He who walks in evil has no such assurance. We must pray unceasingly that the Spirit will work in our hearts so that we can dwell in Zion. Sing or read Psalter 415 especially stanzas 2 and 6.