28th September 2020
THE DOGS? “Of them the proverbs are true: “A dog returns to its vomit,” and, “A sow that is washed returns to her wallowing in the mud.”” 2.Pet.2,22NIV A man preached about not to sin on the grace. Jesus has bought us so dearly. If we really sat down contemplating about what he had to go through in order to buy us back to Heaven, then we would not have trampled on his precious work of salvation like that. He was maltreated and tortured and in addition to this he carried a heavy burden on his back, namely the sins of the whole world, committed by all generations through all the ages. We do not have the right attitude if we think: Well, now I am saved so now I can live as I please. In that case, we sin on the grace and that is not good. Then the man read from the last chapter of the Bible: “Outside are the dogs, those who practice magic arts, the sexually immoral, the murderers, the idolaters and everyone who loves and practices falsehood. ” Rev.22,15NIV These are the ones who are not allowed to enter the New Jerusalem. Read the entire chapter 21 and 22, here you will get a thorough explanation of the New Jerusalem. But let's return to the Scripture. The dogs are the ones who are first mentioned out of this herd of sinners. Who are the dogs then? Peter touches this in 2 Peter 2:22: “Of them the proverbs are true: “A dog returns to its vomit,” and, “A sow that is washed returns to her wallowing in the mud.”” This means that people who have been saved turn back to the world and thus live as they did before. But Jesus prays in the high priestly prayer: “I have given them your word and the world has hated them, for they are not of the world any more than I am of the world. ” John 17,14NIV We live in the world but are not of the world. It is not possible to stand with one leg in each camp, because then we fall down between them. We are called to be light and salt in this world. Jesus hates the lukewarm. As lukewarm Jesus will spit us out of his mouth.(Rev. 3,16) Effie Campbell translated
27th September 2020
WITH JESUS IN THE BOAT I AM SAFE IN THE MIDDLE OF THE STORM ”When the disciples saw him walking on the lake, they were terrified. “It’s a ghost,” they said, and cried out in fear. ” Matt.14,26NIV Svein Andersen The disciples cried out in fear, "It is a ghost!" Then he came walking on the lake to them. Now we are there again, in the middle of a big and unexpected storm with waves washing over the entire world, and Jesus neither sleeps in the boat nor comes walking on the back of the Corona waves, no ..., He lives by faith in our hearts. He is closer to us than our own breathing. He loves us more than our own mother, and He prays for us more than anyone else, well, He lives to intercede for us! Do you need intercession? You have an intercessor sitting at the right hand side of our heavenly Father! You and I can safely lie down and get a good night's sleep without fear or worry for tomorrow, for it is already in His hand! He has commanded His angels to protect all who love Him, “For he will command his angels concerning you
to guard you in all your ways;” Psalm 91,11NIV. He has commanded the Holy
Spirit to comfort and guide us, and He Himself has prepared for us a dwelling
place in Heaven! Fear no more, and do not worry, for all your times are in His
hand, and all your days were numbered, long before any of them even came
It is so liberating to put one's life in the hands of the Lord when the Corona storm rages. It is freedom to live in the shadow of the Almighty and to be able to sing along to the hymn: "He is my defense, my castle, my God, in whom I trust!" The seriousness of the current worldwide situation of "disease creeping up on us in the dark" gives many people a new opportunity to stop and look at life and to find their way back to the peace of mind that only a personal devotional with the Word and prayer can give everyday life. An account of how I have spent my time and money over the past 10 years might change my financial plan if the Lord were to bless us with new years before His return. Then the days continue in storm as well as in sunshine. I begin the day with Jesus and the Words from Heaven, I give thanks and pray, I bless children and grandchildren, and I commit to church and mission. Why? Because He has so often given me grace and more grace than I have deserved and expected, and because He loved me - before I knew Him! Effie Campbell translated
26th September 2020 YOU ARE IN GOD'S WAITING ROOM “Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.” Psalm 27,14NIV God gave His people a remarkable message: “Three times a year all your men are to appear before the Sovereign Lord, the God of Israel. I will drive out nations before you and enlarge your territory, and no one will covet your land when you go up three times each year to appear before the Lord your God. ” Ex.34,23-24NIV Consider this! Three times a year they were to stop all work and spend time with God, worshiping him, seeking his guidance and his course for the future. Can you imagine what would happen if you did the same? Notice the words "enlarge your territory". Instead of losing something, you gain. Also note the words "I will drive out nations before you". As you worship God and wait for Him, the Lord will fight your battles. And one of the differences between you and God is that you are in danger of losing, but He has never lost a battle. Also note the words "no one will covet your land". You do not have to fear competition from others. God uses this "three times a year pilgrimage" to teach His people this main principle: "If you wait for me in worship, I will work for you." His words are, “but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” Isaiah40,31NIV You thus have two choices: Continue to rush about and stress - or take advantage of God's strength and His plans as you spend time with Him. "A Word for the Day" Effie Campbell translated.
25th September 2020 LOOK IN A NEW WAY “I remain confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.” Psalm 27,13NIV When you start looking at things from God's point of view, it changes your feelings. The only thing that keeps your old negative emotions running is your own thoughts. The old King James Version of the Bible says: “For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he:..” Provervs 23,7KJV When you start thinking the right thoughts, then your life will gradually start going the right way. But remember, you did not become negative in one day and that you will hardly become positive in a single day. So how do you get started? 1) You must do anything “excellent or praiseworthy ” Phil.4,8NIV and replace or put it instead of negative thoughts. You need to treat negative thoughts the same way as flies - sweep them away. With perseverance this is going to make you succeed. It is a conscious choice on your part to make! 2) Before entering the future, remind yourself of the faithfulness of God in the past. Shakespeare said, "Let neither day nor night pass by in desecration, but always remember what the Lord has done." David said, “I remain confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.” Psalm 27,13-14NIV We do not have more difficulties than other people, we just think more about them. If you want to experience a feeling, it must first be created in the mind before you can "produce" it. This is revolutionary, this is life-changing information - and it will change your life if you act in accordance with it! "A Word for the Day" Effie Campbell translated
24th September 2020
STICK TO WHAT YOU BELIEVE - AND GOD WILL HONOR YOU “... I have made a vow to the Lord that I cannot break.” ” Judges 11,35 NIV For months, Eric Liddell practiced wholeheartedly and was determined to win the 100 meter race at the 1924 Olympics. Most athletes believed he would win. But when he arrived at the games it became clear to him that the race would take place on a Sunday. This was a big problem for him because he did not think he could honor God if he ran on His holy day. He therefore called of the race and his fans were shocked by his decision. Some who had previously praised him to the skies now called him a great fool. A lot of pressure was put on him, but he stuck to his decision. Then they received a cancellation for the 400 meter race. This race was to take place on an everyday and Liddell was offered the vacancy. In fact, this was not his favorite discipline. The distance was four times as long as the one he had been preparing for for a long time. Still, he crossed the finish line as the winner and also set a new record of 47.6 sec. He won an Olympic gold medal and showed that he was not to be shaken from what he believed was right to do when it came to his faith, and his historic achievement was later portrayed in the award-winning film, "Chariots of Fire". Eric Liddell became even more famous when he became a missionary in China, where he later died in a concentration camp in 1945. He was like Jephthah, who said: “... I have made a vow to the Lord that I cannot break.” ” Judges 11,35 NIV The message that shines so clearly through the life of this man is: Stick to what you believe is right - and God will honor you. "A Word for the Day" Effie Campbell translated
23th September 2020
JESUS WEPT ”Jesus wept.” John 11,35NIV Can we become so utterly miserable and hopelessly despairing when we lose someone we love, when at the same time we also believe in the resurrection, where everything will one day be beautiful and good? Yes! In the first place God created us as human beings with emotions. If we do not accept these feelings, then we will have problems being whole and complete people. We would be dishonest towards ourselves if grief and perhaps also uncertainty and doubt did not strike us. Next, this is exactly what Jesus himself does in the verse above. And, of course, Jesus knows very well himself the wonderful plan that was laid in Heaven for the Fall. He knows that he himself has the power to make alive again, and he may well know that he will do just that a few minutes after this moment! And yet he weeps. He weeps because he sees. He sees the pain, the suffering, the hopelessness, and he feels himself how hurt you feel when death takes our lives from us. We can thus weep over the suffering, while clinging to hope. For even God himself weeps - also with you today. Effie Campbell translated
22th September 2020
THE LORD MAKES WATER TO WINE ““I am the Lord, the God of all mankind. Is anything too hard for me? ” Jer.32,27NIV They sat together under some trees in the plantation. - Some of them were drunk. Some were still at their full five and they were talking loudly. But the topic of the conversation was all the time: More to drink. At times, they became too loud and some used inappropriate language, screaming and howling. Suddenly a sober and handsomely dressed young man came over to them. He smiled and said, "Well, boys, how are you?" Everyone turned to him and they could easily recognize him: "Well, isn't it you, Ole?" It was now at least two years since they had last seen him. Everyone had heard that he had become "very religious". One of them was therefore quick on the trigger and asked. "Well, well, Ole, even though you are now converted you are not so foolish as to think that water can turn into wine are you?" The drunken young man started laughing. "No, such wonders are pure fabrication!" "Such wonders!" Their old friend becomes very upset and harsh in his voice and says aloud: - "Listen now, - my Savior can do far greater miracles than that! Just come with me home and see !!! The alcohol is turned into a happy home, a good wife, clothes, furniture and a whole family! ” ““I am the Lord, the God of all mankind. Is anything too hard for me? ” Jer.32,27NIV “For it is more than enough that in the past you have done as the Gentiles will, and lived a life of debauchery, lust, burning, wild parties, drunkenness, and improper idolatry. Now, when you no longer rush into the same stream of debauchery, they wonder and mock you for it, ”1.Pet.4,3-4 "Faith & Facts" E. Campbell translated
21th September 2020
THE PARISH CLERKS “... “We will not neglect the house of our God.”” Neh.10,39 NIV Among Jesus' ancestors, the names constantly change from known people to people we know nothing about. In Matt.1,13NIV we read: “Zerubbabel the father of Abihud, Abihud the father of Eliakim, Eliakim the father of Azor,”
Zerubbabel was a very famous man. He was one of those who brought home the Jews from the exile in Babylon. As for his descendants Abiud and Eliakim, we know nothing about who these men really were.
Inside the vestry in some churches there are mounted pictures of all the priests who have stood on the near pulpit, but there are no pictures of church servants such as clergies or organists. Why? The Bible does not only mention kings and priests but also singers and doorkeepers. 1.Chron.16,13 and 9,17.
God values and recognizes those who work in the forefront of public life; but he certainly also cares for and appreciates those of his humble servants who work backstage.
Take heart, you believers! Even though no one notices you and your deeds, God has you on his roll up in Heaven, and up there your reward awaits you. ”Those who have served well gain an excellent standing and great assurance in their faith in Christ Jesus. ” 1.Tim.3,13NIV E. Campbell translated
20th September 2020
DO NOT BE ASHAMED OF JESUS ““Whoever acknowledges me before others, I will also acknowledge before my Father in heaven. But whoever disowns me before others, I will disown before my Father in heaven. ” Matt.10,32-33NIV I am now 78 years old and it is with gratitude in my heart that I can look back to how the Lord, my God, has led me right from my youth. The great day of my life - at that time I had passed 40 years - came as a result of the Lord intervening twice in my life and showing His divine power. I cannot, of course, explain how it could be that these events took place; but one thing is certain: the events took place! And here I would like to tell you about everything, in honor of the Lord, and with prayer that you too may be allowed to meet him! When I was 17, I worked for Martin Breidal and his wife. They lived in Lågendalen in Larvik in Norway. These three years that I served them I felt good in every respect. However, there was one thing that was a heavy burden to me: I was scared to death of "all Christian". This attitude on my part nagged this couple for their great wish and prayer was that I would come to the meetings and hear about Jesus and become a personal Christian. But for me, even the thought of this was more than enough! Confessing faith in God created a horror inside me and I always avoided this. But by this time I was got measles and I got really sick. One of the nights when I was lying sick my eyes fell on the wall and there I saw in big golden letters above my bed: Matt.10,32-33. I did not understand how the text could come there like that. But I knew that what I saw had something to do with the Bible, a book that was completely unknown to me. The following morning I told the woman of the house what I had seen. She loved her Bible and quickly found the scripture. When she saw what was written there, she was immensely moved because she knew of the terrible fear of man that plagued me. She now read aloud: ““Whoever acknowledges me before others, I will also acknowledge before my Father in heaven. But whoever disowns me before others, I will disown before my Father in heaven.” Matt.10,32-33NIV Despite the fact that I had received this direct "Greeting from Heaven", I still did not take a definite stand and did not act in accordance with the calling. The years passed, and I still remained "neutral" and never dared confessing the name of the Lord. - - - - - 25 years went on like this and the situation was still unchanged. But then something happened again one night: Someone woke me and said that Martin Breidal was dead and that I had to leave the following morning for Lågendalen for the funeral! This amazed me. Of course, I had never been able to forget this noble couple for whom I had served in my youth. But had the man really lived right up until now? And what effect could it have that I was to go to his funeral? But, dear friend, because this "message" came to me three times that same night, I just had to obey, to put it bluntly. The journey lasted for three hours. Truly a strange journey ... When I finally arrived there, it turned out that I was just in time for Martin Breidal's funeral! The funeral was to be at 11 a.m. from the parish hall. This unique Christian brother and missionary had lived 99 years. He was known far and wide and was very loved. Many people had come to the funeral and the hall was packed. Then the amazing thing happened that the funeral turned into a true "reader meeting", like in the old days with testimonies and happy singing! There was no "funeral atmosphere". People praised the Lord for eternal life, and they praised His holy name. God's spirit worked and many people praised God with a loud voice! All this should be more than enough to terrify me. But it never happened. On the contrary! Something inside me melted, and for the first time in my life, I got up to testify and confess the name of Jesus! I testified about the words I received as a 17-year-old when I served at Breidal, and about the 25 years that had passed since then in disobedience to his specific calling. I told how I was awakened three times last night and told to go to this funeral, and how I had finally made a wholehearted decision for my Savior. When I came home later, everything became new to me, and after this great event, I have never been ashamed to confess Jesus' precious name! To him belongs all the glory! “Tro & fakta” = "Faith & Facts" E. Campbell translated
19th September 2020
THE PROMISES ”Then will the eyes of the blind be opened and the ears of the deaf unstopped. Then will the lame leap like a deer, and the mute tongue shout for joy. Water will gush forth in the wilderness and streams in the desert.” Isaiah 35,5-6NIV Dale stepped forward and struggled his way up to the pulpit carrying a giant book with thick pages. One of the elders adjusted the microphone for him while Dale flipped through the pages of the book – and stopped roughly in the middle of the book. He readjusted the dark glasses on his nose, as if he was able to see, and then he began reading: “Strengthen the feeble hands, steady the knees that give way; say to those with fearful hearts, “Be strong, do not fear; your God will come,” I immediately recognized the words of Isaiah, chapter 35. Dale's big clumsy book was the Bible, written in touch-typing. But that was not the entire Bible. The part he read from this morning included only a few books from the Old Testament. Most of the Bible was still at Dale's house, because he could not move all the books at once! The blind man continued to read with his hands running on the pages of the book his fingers sliding along small dot-shaped elevations in the paper. He read fluently and with an authoritative voice. Occasionally the fingers stopped as they encountered a staple on the page (It was his way of emphasizing a word). Dale appeared small behind the giant book on the large pulpit; but in my eyes he was a great person. The Bible must be hugely precious to Dale when you consider how much energy he spends reading it, to emphasizing a word, or simply to have it moved from his home to the church! I studied my own Bible, which I was sitting with in my lap, and realized that from that very day on, I had a slightly different view of the Bible. How precious is the Bible to you? Is it not time for you to open your eyes to see that the Bible is the word of God, a holy message from your Heavenly Father? Try reading Isaiah chapter 35 today and notice the truth and hope that are hidden for us in the word of God. Heavenly Father, thank you for loving us so much that you have revealed yourself to us through your word. Help me today to read it as if it was the first time. Joni Eareckson Tada
18th September 2020
WORKING “... Night is coming, when no one can work.” John 9,4 NIV There are people who do not bother working. In Paul's days, he traveled from village to village teaching the Gentiles about God. He also wrote letters to the places he had visited. In the Bible, God's will is written down, and now we will read a little from one of Paul's letters in the Bible: ”For even when we were with you, we gave you this rule: “The one who is unwilling to work shall not eat.”” 2. Thess.3,10 NIV God has given us a healthy body so that we can use it and not let others do the work for us. A person who does not work sins against God. The Lord calls us mildly and says, ““What do you think? There was a man who had two sons. He went to the first and said, ‘Son, go and work today in the vineyard.’” Matt.21,28NIV, and Jesus explains to us how it happens in Heaven. At least there is no dazing and laziness: “In his defense Jesus said to them, “My Father is always at his work to this very day, and I too am working.” ” John 5,17NIV Idlers and loafers have always existed, even in Paul's day: “We hear that some among you are idle and disruptive. They are not busy; they are busybodies. 12Such people we command and urge in the Lord Jesus Christ to settle down and earn the food they eat. ” 2Thessalonians3,11- 12NIV, and elsewhere he says, “and to make it your ambition to lead a quiet life: You should mind your own business and work with your hands, just as we told you, ” 1Thess.4,11NIV We should teach our future generations the joy and pleasure of working. Possessing large fortunes and a lot of possessions is no prerequisite for being happy. Happiness is the work itself, the service itself, that is, being allowed to be where God has set us.
E. Campbell translated
17th September 2020
"I AM YOURS, RIGHT UNTIL THE END ..."
““I tell you, whoever publicly acknowledges me before others, the Son of Man will also acknowledge before the angels of God. ” Luke 12,8NIV Rachel was in the middle of 5 siblings. She was a happy young girl - gripped by Jesus. She dreamed of becoming an actress and a missionary - and that was what she became. On the other side of the world, her father stands with her diary and reads over the phone what she wrote on the day of the year itself, the year after she was liquidated and thus became a martyr. "I do not know what this is; it feels like darkness is coming. It is so hard, so heavy and cold. Those who have been my friends are now turning their backs on me. I do not know why. But God, I trust in you, and you know that I have surrendered to you. I will give you my whole life and not just live for you when everything is easy and convenient. I am yours, right until the end ... ” What happened: On April 20, 1999, on Adolf Hitler's birthday, two armed students entered Columbine High School in Littleton, USA, and shot dead 13 people and then themselves. Among the dead were Rachel Scott, a 17-year-old Christian girl who represented a youth group in the congregation, and Cassie Bernall, who had been saved from abuse and spiritual worship 2 years earlier. Their lives were brutally taken from them with a shot, after answering the question of whether they believed in God with the words, "Yes, I believe!" This gave rise to shock waves and became a true test of faith for the others in the youth group. Many expected those who stood outside to say that this was proof that God does not exist or that he cannot protect those who believe in him. But it was the exact opposite that happened. Jesus is talking about the grain of wheat falling into the ground and dying. But after a short while, God lets life sprout again - thousand times bigger and stronger than if it were not something that fell into the ground and died. Of course, it was not God's will for Rachel and Cassie and 11 others at the school to be shot to death. But the following months He has shown time and time again that He is a God who can turn the most terrible acts of evil into victory and salvation. Because within a year, there were hardly any Christian youths in the United States who were not affected by these martyrs' courage to stand firm in their faith, whether or not it seemed to cost them their lives. "Yes, I believe!" has become a slogan in the true sense of the word. The idea of being prepared to even lose one's life for one's faith, should we face this, has ignited such a fire in thousands of young people that this phenomenon has not previously been seen in either the United States or the Western world as a whole. Darrel, Rachel Scott's father, travels to schools all over the United States and tells about his daughter and uses her testimony to ask the young people if they are really ready to wave goodbye to this life without having peace with God. Along with him is also Rachel's youngest brother, Craig, who is 16 years old. Craig was also at the same school and he saw his sister and another being shot but he survived the encounter with the killers because he played dead as they walked past him. Rachel Scott knew both men who comitted this crime. Just one week before, she had testified to them about Jesus. They shot Cassie Bernall right away after she had said yes to the question of whether she believed in God. But when the men reached Rachel Scott at the library, they already knew she was saved. They then fired four bullets into her body, however not fatally. Then one of them went over to her and asked if she still believed in God. She replied, "Yes, I believe in Him." They then killed her with a shot to the head. On April 16, just 4 days before the massacre, Rachel writes in her diary: "If you were to die today. What happens? Where would you end up? You have no promise of seeing tomorrow, only an opportunity. You may not get this opportunity. After death, what comes next? Where will you be in your eternity? Will you spend the eternity with a Father who loves you, or will you live away from God always? ”
16th September 2020
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. ” John 3,16 When the war broke out in 1940, Karla Stokke worked as an officer in the Salvation Army in Lakkegata 15 in Oslo. Olga Brustad was an assistant and she has told about this event: One day the phone did not work. It was impossible to connect with anyone. We then asked for help from a man to look at and repair the phone but he could only confirm what we knew that the connection had been cut of. - Tell me, young man, do you have a relationship with God? Stokke asked. This question took him by surprise and he replyed stuttering that he did not. "That is the most important thing of all on earth, young man," said Stokke. Remember that, because if we do not have a relationship with God down here on earth, well, then there will be no relationship in eternity either! And indeed, the relationship came about. It ended with Stokke and this young man praying to God together. The relationship must be established on this side. It is NOT something that gets established once we have come to the other side.
Effie Campbell translated
15th September 2020
of living water.’ ‘And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.’””
Once I was in the hospital many years ago, I noticed something strange. Even though I knew
that the women who were in my hospital were in great pain, none of them cried. Occasionally
I lay awake all night wanting to cry; but I was afraid to wake the others in the living room, and
then they might as well tease me in physiotherapy the following day. So I held back the tears.
When I was discharged, I heard about David, the warrior king, who was weeping. The pages
of the Psalms are salted and wet with his tears. I heard about the great, strong Peter, who
wept bitterly when he realized his sin. About Jesus it says ”... he offered up prayers and petitions
with fervent cries and tears to the one who could save him from death, and he was heard because
of his reverent submission. ”
When I heard about all this from the Bible, I dared to cry myself. Tears were no longer something
I was to be ashamed of or signs of weakness. And I am convinced that God will
one day wipe away all my tears.
God give you hope even if you find it difficult to hold back the tears. The Bible says that
”Those who sow with tears will reap with songs of joy.” Psalm126,5NIV This means that out
of your sorrow, God will give you the reward of joy that lasts forever. God, sometimes it
seems as if the pain and the difficulties will never end - Thank you for reminding me today
that the tears only last for a limited time.
How I look forward to the day when you yourself will wipe away the tears from the eyes of us
Joni Eareckson Tada
14th September 2020
THE LIE ““You shall not give false testimony against your neighbor. ” Ex 20,16NIV We know this text from Scripture. It is one of the Ten Commandments, and the meaning of it is that we must not lie to anyone. If we break the commandments, then nature strikes back. We know where we're going! The Bible is like a compass. It shows us the right way. It shows us the way to Heaven. In the United States, lie detectors are used in lawsuits. When people lie - even the most hard and tough criminals - the blood pressure rises, and this affects the lie detectors. Why? Because we and our body are not created to lie. The lie harms ourselves as well as others. That is why the eighth commandment says that we must not lie. If we lie, then nature strikes back with high blood pressure, for the nature of our body responds to the lie. I recently read this in the magazine “Troens bevis”="Proof of Faith". At first I thought: "Well, technology has become very advanced." But then I came to think of a story I had heard a few years ago, which shows us that our ourcenstors also knew that the body responds to lie. The story is as follows: Many centuries ago two men were charged with a heinous crime. Both men appeared in the courthouse, where the caliph was to make a decision in the case. They both got the opportunity to speak out and they defended themselves exemplary. Both said they had nothing at all to do with this crime. They were reportedly not at the scene of the crime at all when the crime took place, and they had not so much as heard of it. The caliph sat still for a while. Then he called in a servant. He whispered something in the servant's ear, who then left the room again. A moment later the servant returned with two bowls of uncooked rice. The caliph now commanded both men to take a spoonful of rice up in their mouths and chew the rice well in their mouths. The men now did as the caliph said, for they dared not do otherwise. They understood none of all this and found it very strange; but the servant had often done this before, so he knew how this was going to end. The men now chewed well and thoroughly. The rice was hard because it was uncooked. After chewing well and for a long time, the caliph said they were to spit the rice back down into the bowl. The caliph now rose from his chair and went over to each of the men, carefully examining the rice of both. Then he sat down again, pointed to one of them, and said, "You are welcome to get up and go home, you are innocent." The man happily jumped to his feet and quickly left the building. Then the caliph said to the other, "It is you who has committed the crime." The man now confessed his crime, but it surpassed his understanding how it was possible for the caliph to know the truth. Man is created in such a way that if we become afraid, lie and have a bad conscience, then the mouth produces less saliva. The caliph had examined the rice that the men had spat out very carefully. The rice of the first was a little wet, while the rice of the second was totally dry, and therefore there was no doubt as to whether the other was the culprit. The Bible gives us good advice. It says: “Therefore each of you must put off falsehood and speak truthfully to your neighbor, for we are all members of one body.” Eph.4,25NIV - - - - - - Satan is called the father of lies, for he was the first to lie. We are not to imitate him and become his disciples. Jesus, on the other hand, is the truth. We must flee from the lie and stick to the truth. Jesus speaks a lot about the lie in Revelation, and he warns us strongly against it. "Who are those who one day stand outside the gate of the new Jerusalem?" asks Jesus. “... everyone who loves and practices falsehood.”(Rev.22,15) and ”Nothing impure will ever enter it, nor will anyone who does what is shameful or deceitful, but only those whose names are written in the Lamb’s book of life. ” (Rev.21,27). And then he says something so eerie that we hardly dare mention it: “... and all liars—they will be consigned to the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second death.” ” (Rev.21,8,8) And now that we think about it, we well understand that it is not possible to have liars in heaven. It's not good at all if people go up there and lie. Then there is no heaven anymore. That is why lying is so serious. We must ask God to help us to the truth, and if we have lied, then we must correct it and ask God for forgiveness. Then we have also been promised that the blood of Jesus cleanses us whiter than snow.
13th September 2020
WISDOM ”let us draw near to God with a sincere heart and with the full assurance that faith brings, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water. ” Hebr. 10,22 NIV How would it be good to have the assurance of faith! A fully grown and mature faith. A faith that provides spiritual insight into spiritual truths and helps us become more convinced of things that we do not see. The Puritans said that the believers who have endured through great trials and temptations get full assurance in faith. When we have endured, the Spirit gives us assurance, and faith matures as a source of power in all areas of life. The eyes of the soul are strengthened and the spiritual wisdom is developed. If I have achieved anything through life in a wheelchair, then it is a greater assurance of faith. The trials have assured me of rich and deep spiritual truths. The Spirit has convinced me that “...in all things God works for the good of those who love him...” I know that I am never alone, and that Heaven is a reality. I am fully convinced that even the slightest act done in the name of Jesus opens up the powers of glory in Heaven. Such is life in the assurance of faith. Your trials and temptations may be God's way of using Hebrews 10:22 in your life. Through adversity, you can draw closer to God. Your heart can become more wholehearted. Faith grows to full assurance of wonderful spiritual truths. Remember that faith ”... is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see. ”
Joni Eareckson Tada
12th September 2020
MATERIALISM ““No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money. ” Matt.6,24NIV Bjørn Heimstad The fastest growing religion in the world today is not Islam or Christianity but materialism. But is materialism a religion, a worship of God? Yes, I believe it is, and the god of the materialism is called mammon. I have met discouraged and frightened fathers who are confused because the young generation does not go to the mosque except on very special occasions. They prefer to sit at home and watch music videos where they see wealthy artists from the western world and India, from Hollywood and Bollywood. Every single week parents call here to the office. They are in distress and worried about their adult children. The children have good jobs and are financially independent, but they have no interest in hearing the word of God. The Bible warns us. Jesus clearly states in his warning: ““No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money. ” Matt.6,24NIV Throughout the history of Israel in the Old Testament, we see a pattern that repeats itself: In difficult times, they repented and sought God. God was gracious and punished them as mildly as possible - and blessed the Jews in all areas, including the material. In good times, they often forgot to seek God. They found peace in everyday things, worldly things - and therefore reaped negative fruits. Paul says to those who are materially rich in the church: “Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment. ” ” 1.Tim.6,17NIV It is said clearly throughout Scripture that God does not mind that we have abundance in all areas, including financially and materialistically. The model of poverty does not come from the Bible but from the Middle Ages. Money is a good servant but a hard and terrible master. It is not dangerous to have money if it is not the case that the money has us. We were all shaken by the terrorist attack of September 11, 2001. The most optimistic here glimpsed an opportunity for revival among the Americans. And quite right. The first Sunday after 9/11, churches were packed all over the United States. But what amazed many was that it only took 2-3 weeks after the attack for the number of visitors to the churches to return to normal. Everything was as before. We survived and we still had food on the table every day. Materialism survived 11.9. The terror in the United States reveals how vulnerable we humans are. Anything can happen and anything can go wrong within just a few seconds. But as long as we have bread and entertainment, we can manage everything without God. Materialism is the latest crutch our people worship and cling to. Our people already have a religion they worship, and as long as this exists, well then they do not need the gospel. At least not before they can glimpse their own funeral and grave clothes with no pockets. After 1945, we built the welfare state while "building" God out of our daily lives. This is the greatest disaster that has befallen our country in recent times. What is materialism? Materialism is trying to satisfy our need with material things. Then we also seek security in the material values instead of having our security in God and in his promises. Materialism has also led people to flee into increasing workloads to anaesthetize the spiritual void.
E. Campbell translated, 62.21
11th September 2020
CHRIST AND THE TRUTH “Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” John14,6 NIV I believe that nothing is so beautiful, nothing so deeply heartfelt and marvelous, nothing so true, no one so wise, as bold and perfect as Jesus Christ. I say to myself that his equal does not exist and cannot be found either. If anyone can prove to me that the truth of our lives was not with Christ - then I would rather follow Christ than the truth.
Fjodor Dostojevsky, 62,20
10th September 2020
LOOK AT HIM SOLELY “The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, “Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!” John 1,29NIV The Persian king Cyrus is said to have captured a prince, his wife and children during a campaign. When they were brought before the king, Cyrus asked the prince: "What will you give me in return if I give you back your freedom?" "Half of my kingdom," replied the prince. "And if I release your children too?" asked Cyrus. "My whole kingdom!" "But what do you give me then if I give your wife her freedom?" "Myself!" Cyrus liked this answer, and so he gave them all their freedom without demanding any ransom. On the way home, the prince asked his wife if she had noticed how high-minded, noble and beautiful Kyros was. She answered: "I only saw him who was willing to give himself as a ransom for my freedom." If only the children of God learned to look to Jesus, who not only was willing to give himself as a ransom for our freedom, but who also did it. Let us look to him as our great example in humility and meekness, in faith and love, in prayer and work. Let us look at him who is the executor and originator of the faith - not at ourselves, the world or the faults and shortcomings of Christians. Let us look to Jesus and him only, who triumphed at Calvary and in our hearts, so that we may live our lives to the glory of our God. TDH translated
9th September 2020
A CONFIRMATION STORY ”Oh, the depth of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable his judgments, and his paths beyond tracing out!” Rom.11,33NIV A priest's story: Long time ago, I had among my candidates for confirmation a boy who was so raw and ugly in the mouth that I did not experience others like him. He was the reason I often lost patience, unfortunately
Only once did I soften my heart, that was when, after confirmation, I greeted him goodbye. He was to sail the oceans of the world. Then I said with tears in my eyes: “I have a feeling that you will face great ordeals and come in deep distress; but should that be the case, then consider, my dear friend, that you too can seek the Savior and that he has already been looking for you for a long time. ” The boy left, apparently as unaffected as he had come. Some years passed. And then one Sunday night I had worship. I sat in the vestry, preparing to go up to the pulpit. Suddenly a magnificent young sailor comes in to me. With great speed he steered directly towards me, grabbed my hands so tightly that I could have screamed and asked: “Don't you recognize me? I owe you my life, thanks to you I am blissful. ” He was the bad boy I've mentioned above. There was no time for many words, for when this hymn was finished I had to get up on the pulpit, and my sailor had to hurry down again to the ship at the quay. In a few words, he told me about his travels and dangers, about his sufferings and joys. Beatings and harsh words had long characterized his daily life. Then one day they were hit by a terrific hurricane. The ship went down and almost the entire crew drowned, and my poor boy drifted for two days at sea in a barrel. Every moment he feared the waves were going to grab him. "During this terrible ordeal," he said, "I thought a lot about what you, dear priest, said to me when we said goodbye to each other." And he now repeated word-for-word and with tears running down his cheek what I had said to him back then. "And from that day forward I have prayed every single day, and now I also know that I have a Savior and I am so happy." We both cried and I gave this magnificent young man a crush as we said goodbye to each other. The congregation was now already in the process of singing the last verse. I had to go up to the pulpit and he hurried down to the boat. And who knows on which ocean he is now drifting around. But I'm happy.
Wherever this young man is now, and even though I may never see him
again on this earth, I have the rock-solid conviction: the Lord has won him!
Gerh. Haaland, "Himmelveien" Effie Campbell translated
8th September 2020
CHRISTIANS EXPOSED BY BOMBS “as far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.” Psalms 103.12 NIV Reese Kauffman Satan loves to attack us and "drop bombs" on young and older believers concerning sin. We must carefully look at God's complete forgiveness regarding our own lives so that we become stronger against these attacks. We will now look at 4 clear images from the Bible that show what God has done with our sins. 1. God has removed our sins from us, erased them. Psalms 103,12 says, “as far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.” - If you move north from anywhere on this planet, you will eventually reach the North Pole, it cannot be avoided, and no matter which direction you choose from the North Pole, you will head south, but if you travel to the east or west, then you will always go east or west. These two never meet or cross each other. So far, God has removed our sins from us. Not because of something we have been guilty of, but by the grace of God. 2. The sinners are not seen. Another image of forgiveness is found in Isaiah 38,17: “Surely it was for my benefit that I suffered such anguish. In your love you kept me from the pit of destruction; you have put all my sins behind your back.” - When you put something behind your back, what do you do then? Remove it from your sight. That is exactly what God has done. He is not just turning his back, and it was no coincidence that our sins was put behind him. He threw our sins behind him. It is not possible to get them back. They are removed forever. The picture in Micah 7,19NIV says: “You will again have compassion on us; you will tread our sins underfoot and hurl all our iniquities into the depths of the sea.” - There are parts of the world's oceans that are too deep for humans to explore. These depths are many kilometers and no ship can drop anchor there. - We do not know much about the deep seas. Yet God has used them to explain what He has done to our sins. He did not just drop them from a boat at the dock area. He deliberately threw them out of there, from which they can never return. A perfect and unwavering act. 4. The sins are blotted out. Allow me to bring a new example from Isaiah43,25NIV: ““I, even I, am he who blots out your transgressions, for my own sake, and remembers your sins no more.” First, God blots out our sins. That they have been deleted means that they have been removed from the list. They are erased forever. I read about a man from Canada who in his youth committed a serious crime. He was convicted and it came to stand on his criminal record. He grew up and became a moral and honorable man; but his crime still figured on his criminal record. Later, the queen showed him mercy and the crime was deleted from the criminal record. Should someone after this have decided to examine his criminal record, then they could simply state that it was completely clean and blank. This is what is written in Isaiah's text. Although the record of transgression may be quite long, God deletes everything in it. It will be deleted and removed from the list. The second part of the verse says, "... remembers your sins no more." That does not mean he forgets our sins. Forgetting is a passive action, not remembering is an active action. He chooses not to remember our sins. When God no longer remembers our sins, our relationship with Him is changed. When God shows us grace, he actively chooses not to remember our sins. It is as if we have not sinned. We need to ponder how unimaginably great the grace of God really is when He takes care of our sins. By the grace of God, our sins are removed as far from us as the east is from the west. God has purposely thrown our sins behind him. Because of what Jesus Christ has done for us, our sins are thrown into the deepest part of the oceans, and from there they can never be recovered again. Our transgressions are completely removed from the list, and he no longer remembers them. The community that was broken between God and man has been restored. God's forgiveness is perfect!
"Guard my lambs" Effie Campbell translated
7th September 2020
GOD'S CARE “Lord, what are human beings that you care for them, mere mortals that you think of them?” Psalm 144.3NIV Like Jesus no one here on earth was, noone as gentle was like him, and a friend like him no sinner has, that saves those living in the dim. Whether you are weak or strong, like a saint, or you are struggling with doubts and temptations, Jesus still cares for you. I know you may be thinking, “Yes, Jesus cares for me in the same way he does for the whole world; but when it comes to individual persons, then it is others he has a greater interest in. I cannot figure out how to pray aloud, and misunderstand the Bible, and it turns out that I have a hard time letting go of old and stupid habits. Well yes, I know he cares for me, but not so much as for those who are more obedient than I am. No, that's not the case. The Lord's care for you does not depend on your efforts and accomplishments. His care for you has nothing to do with the personal problems and difficulties you are struggling with. It does not go well for you to confess and serve the Lord, for you always lose the battles in everyday life. It has no relevance. As a child of God, you matter. For you, dear believers, are covered by eternal love, and it follows you both night and day. A love full of unconditional care. ”Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.” 1.Pet.5,7NIV What other friend do you have who has you in his mind every single second, day and night? What other friend do you have that forgives seventy times seventy times and more? Surely, no one has ever cared for you the way Jesus has! O, greatest wonder, his joyful nest, that God, who rules over space and time, me little dust he gave the best gave the message, the words gentle rhyme: "You are my child, I Father of thine, for all eternity you are mine.
6th September 2020
THE GOSPEL “When he had received the drink, Jesus said, “It is finished.” With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.” John 19,30 NIV The gospel is wonderful. I have received forgiveness for all my sins. God has done everything. Now I have eternal life in Jesus. I am bought free and stand righteous before God. Jesus cried out on the cross, "It is finished." But before that happened, he had a hard fight in the Garden of Gethsemane, and on the cross he endured and suffered much for your and my sins. I want to thank Him for salvation and pray for strength to be able to live according to His will.
Effie Campbell translated
5th September 2020
HEAVEN HERE AND NOW ”But you have come to Mount Zion, to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem. You have come to thousands upon thousands of angels in joyful assembly, 23to the church of the firstborn, whose names are written in heaven. You have come to God, the Judge of all, to the spirits of the righteous made perfect,” Hebr.12,22-23NIV Do you see anything strange in this text from Scripture? It is the tense that the verb is in. The author of the letter of Hebrews says that we "have come" to Heaven. - The promise of the resurrection was not written for a distant future, but for the time here and now. God wants us to feel the joy and excitement here and now, to have an expectation of Heaven as if it was near us. He wants us to believe that we have already come to the heavenly Jerusalem. He wants us to be aware that we are already sitting with Christ in Heaven, that "our citizenship is in Heaven." As God sees it, Jesus' return is imminent, so it can come at any moment. If we learn to use our days in the perspective of eternity then the joy of resurrection becomes something that concerns the present. If we search our heart, our plans, words and deeds, to make sure we build on the rock then Heaven will appear to us just as close as our heartbeat. That which belongs to the future, the distant and the misty will come near to us and appear real to us. The kingdom of God is in the midst of you and within you, Jesus said, and this nourishes our longing for the kingdom of God to come in all its glory — whatever moment it may be. A living hope for Heaven will evoke the things that most Christians call invisible and distant. Such hope will reveal the heavenly dwellings, the joyous halls, and the worshiping crowds. This hope opens your ears so that you hear the heavenly tones and the angelic song.
4th September 2020
NO ONE EXCEPT JESUS “When they looked up, they saw no one except Jesus.” Matt.17,8 NIV Somewhere, the bishop, O. Olsen, tells of a round church in a mountain pass in the Alps. In the middle of the room hangs a cross, and on the walls of the church there are statues of prophets and apostles, and under each statue there is a text from the Bible. Here Isaiah is standing pointing to the crucified one, and we read: “But he was pierced for our transgressions...” Isaiah53,5 NIV The apostle Peter stands there and stretches his hands to the Savior with the words: ““He himself bore our sins” in his body on the cross, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; ... ” 1.Pet.2,24NIV There is John the Baptist, pointing with his stick at the cross: “...“Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!” John1,29NIV And under Jeremiah we read: ““Is it nothing to you, all you who pass by? Look around and see. Is any suffering like my suffering that was inflicted on me,” Lam.1.12 NIV Paul also stands there and testifies before the audience: ”...through Jesus the forgiveness of sins is proclaimed to you.” Acts 13,38NIV But when the guests leave the church again, they read above the inner door: “All the prophets testify about him that everyone who believes in him receives forgiveness of sins through his name.” ” Acts 10,43NIV What do we say - what do you say - about him? How we need to have Jesus as the unifying force in our lives and existence. May he also be allowed to be the driving force in all our work, then we will undoubtedly experience his blessings.
"A word along the way" E. Campbell translated
3rd September 2020
THANK GOD FOR THE INEXPRESSIBLE GIFT ““Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” Matt.11,28 If you were to express the wording that most precisely carries in itself the heaviest in human life, then the wording would sound: to nothing. The transient suffering and pain of all human life sighs and groans in this wording. And if you were to mention the term that implies the most difficult thing in human life, then it would undoubtedly be: set free. The battles and struggles of human life shake and tremble in this expression. But if, on the other hand, you were to mention the word that most precisely carries the brightest and richest, best and most beautiful on earth, would people then be able to agree on it at all? And perhaps those who pondered the deepest and longest on this matter wouldn't they simply have given up and admitted that what they had longed for the most, what they had tried to grasp in the brightest, richest, best and most beautiful moments, well there is no human expression or word for it. The human tongue cannot express it, for it is unspeakable. But those who were given the language to sing a new song of praise to God, those who were saved from the mists of hopelessness, where it is written in the scriptures of death and doom: to nothing. Those who by God's grace were saved and set free - though not without a struggle - well, they know that the brightest, richest, best and most beautiful in life is not just something we weak crave, which is unspeakable, but on the contrary, something revealed and preached to us in him, the incomprehensible gift of God, Jesus Christ. Jesus is the way, the truth and the life. He who, with all the fullness of God's love in his heart, reaches out his arms to all suffering and sighing people: "Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest." Matt.11,28 TDH translated
2nd September 2020
JESUS - THE SON OF MAN “For there is one God and one mediator between God and mankind, the man Christ Jesus, ” 1.Tim.2,5NIV Just imagine how good friends Jesus and John were. Their friendship was sincere, strong and beautiful. While on earth, they were always together. John is the only man under the cross.
There was also a special friendship between Jesus and Mary, Marthe's sister. He listened to her, and when she had washed his feet with her tears, he even said that people all over the world were to remember her for this. When we see these close friendships, we cannot but be filled with praise, because Jesus was ... a human. A man of flesh and blood. His heart felt pity. Tenderness shone out of his eyes. His arms embraced and his lips smiled. The hands touched. Jesus was a human being.
He asks us to perceive himself as the Son of Man. The core of Christianity is to know the Lord, Jesus Christ as high priest and king, as shepherd and life-giver. He is the cornerstone of the church. The church is also mentioned his body, his bride. To know the Son of man in all these contexts is to be dependent on him. Well that we love God and love man, Jesus. Thank you that you as the Son of Man understand every enthusiasm in man, that you feel every pain and have compassion on us, let your blessing rest upon us.
1st September 2020 GOD'S PROMISES ”Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. ” James 4,7 The word of God is a multitude of faith-strengthening promises. But often conditions are attached to the promises. They are like a arithmetical problem that needs to get out. An example is James 4,7: ”Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. ” Is it not wonderful that with the word of God we are able to resist our enemy? No matter how strong he seems to us, we can defeat him who intends to deceive us, to bring sorrow into our lives, to remove all hope and to send us into eternal perdition. We can resist and win! We thank God for such words. Effie Campbell translated
16th September 2020