Wednesday, February 28, 2018


LUKE 7:1-10

Luke 7:1 Now when he had ended all his sayings in the audience of the people, he entered into Capernaum.

Susie: Luke is a great journalist. He consistently gives us the setting for each episode of his account of the life of Jesus. In this case, the timing of this incident is right after the sermon Jesus preached on the plateau; and the place is Capernaum by the Sea of Galilee which Jesus used as a home base for much of His ministry.

Luke 7:2 And a certain centurion's servant, who was dear unto him, was sick, and ready to die.

Susie: Luke withholds the name of the centurion. Perhaps it is just not necessary in order to keep the focus on the miracle, or the gospel writers are protecting this Roman soldier from repercussions because of his friendship with the Jews and his belief that Jesus can perform miraculous healings.

Susan: This commander of a hundred men, dearly loved his servant. The servant was precious to him, like a member of the family. The Centurion’s servant was a death’s door.

Luke 7:3 And when he heard of Jesus, he sent unto him the elders of the Jews, beseeching him that he would come and heal his servant.

Susan: Since Jesus was Jewish, the centurion sent leaders of the local synagogue, people Jesus would respect, to ask Jesus to heal his servant.

Luke 7:4-5 And when they came to Jesus, they besought him instantly, saying, That he was worthy for whom he should do this: For he loveth our nation, and he hath built us a synagogue.

Susan: The Jewish leaders eagerly entreated Jesus to heal the centurion’s servant, saying that he was definitely worthy of Jesus’s ministry to his dying servant.

Susie: They reported that this particular centurion loved the nation of Israel and had even built the local synagogue. The scripture does not tell us if he was a “God-fearer,” someone who believed in the God of the Jews, or if he had actually converted to Judaism. But they recognized him as a good man who had been generous to them.

Luke 7:6-7 Then Jesus went with them. And when he was now not far from the house, the centurion sent friends to him, saying unto him, Lord, trouble not thyself: for I am not worthy that thou shouldest enter under my roof: Wherefore neither thought I myself worthy to come unto thee: but say in a word, and my servant shall be healed.

Susan: The Roman centurion humbly sent word to Jesus that He need not come to his house because he was not deserving to have Jesus under his roof. This is why he sent others to Him in the first place because he did not feel worthy to even be in the presence of Jesus. He said that Jesus only needed to command the illness to leave his servant’s body, and his servant would be restored to health.

Luke 7:8 For I also am a man set under authority, having under me soldiers, and I say unto one, Go, and he goeth; and to another, Come, and he cometh; and to my servant, Do this, and he doeth it.

Susie: Since he was a commander of men, this officer knew the concept of those under him being compelled to obey. Therefore, on some level, he knew from Christ’s reputation that illnesses had to obey His command. He had faith that this could even be accomplished from a distance.

Luke 7:9 When Jesus heard these things, he marvelled at him, and turned him about, and said unto the people that followed him, I say unto you, I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel.

Susan: Jesus commended the faith of the centurion to His disciples and all those who were within His hearing. He declared that He had not encountered as great a faith in all of Israel as that demonstrated by this Gentile soldier. Jesus was surprised by the genuine faith of the Roman centurion.

Luke 7:10 And they that were sent, returning to the house, found the servant whole that had been sick.

Susie: When the centurion’s messengers returned to his house, they found the servant completely well even though moments before he had been near death. You may want to read about this incident in Matthew chapter 8. Neither account reports whether this particular centurion then trusted in Jesus. In a similar situation, in John 4, after Jesus healed the son of a nobleman, they entire family believed and trusted in Jesus.

Ponder this and Apply it: Do you ever think, “If only Jesus were here. . .?” Mary and Martha had that thought when their brother Lazarus died. However, this Roman officer knew the Jesus did not even have to be present to heal his servant. He probably may not have expressed it this way, but Jesus is the omniscient (all-knowing), omnipresent (present everywhere at once), omnipotent (all-powerful) God who created everything! He IS present with us. In fact, if you have trusted Him for salvation, His Holy Spirit is WITHIN you! We need to pray knowing that our God is able to answer as long as what we ask is in accordance with His will. Meditate on this idea. Perhaps you may want to listen to the song “Same Power” by Jeremy Camp:

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Sunday, February 25, 2018


Luke 6:43-49

Luke 6:43-44 For a good tree bringeth not forth corrupt fruit; neither doth a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. For every tree is known by his own fruit. For of thorns men do not gather figs, nor of a bramble bush gather they grapes.

Susie: Jesus is about to compare people to plants. In my yard, I grew tomatoes, onions, lettuce, bell peppers, banana peppers, and broccoli in raised beds. However, in my lawn were weeds with prickly stickers and even poison ivy. I did not expect to find Romaine lettuce growing on the weeds or tomatoes on the poison ivy vines. The good plants produced delicious food, but the bad plants were an annoyance to be dealt with because they consistently produced stickers and itchiness. A plant is known by what it produces. People are known by the product of their lives as well.

Luke 6:45 A good man out of the good treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is evil: for of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaketh.

Susan: How does a man become “good?” We are not born that way:

Romans 3:10 As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one:

Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Susan: The only way a person’s heart can be turned from evil to good is not found in religion. It is found in the relationship with God offered as a free gift that Jesus, the Son, purchased when He paid the debt of our sin on the cross. Those who believe and trust in Jesus are filled with His Holy Spirit. It is that Spirit within us that cleanses our hearts and enables us to live in obedience to His word.

Susie: Once we surrender our hearts to Jesus’s control, we fill them with the good found in His word:

Psalm 119:11 (AMP) Your word I have treasured and stored in my heart, That I may not sin against You.

Susan: The Holy Spirit, the third person of the God-head, causes us to produce good fruit:

Galatians 5:22-23 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.

Luke 6:46 And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?

Susan: Jesus was addressing people who presented themselves as acknowledging Him as Master, as if they had relationship with Him, but did not obey Him, living any way they wanted. It is not enough to hear His teaching and say you trust Him. The ones who truly believe will act upon what they have heard.

Matthew 15:8 (NIV) “‘These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me.”

James 1:22  Don’t deceive yourselves by only hearing what the Word says, but do it!

Luke 6:47-48 Whosoever cometh to me, and heareth my sayings, and doeth them, I will shew you to whom he is like: He is like a man which built an house, and digged deep, and laid the foundation on a rock: and when the flood arose, the stream beat vehemently upon that house, and could not shake it: for it was founded upon a rock.

Susie: Most people understand the importance of a foundation in building a house. Whether your home is on a slab foundation or pier and beam, you know that it is critical to have a foundation that goes below the surface of the ground in order to support the house when the dirt shifts due to rainfall. We’ve all seen the commercials reminding us that “cracks are bad.” LOL In the next few verses, Jesus speaks to the importance of our spiritual foundation.

Susan: As believers, storms of life continue to assail us—work stress, personal loss, financial difficulties, worn out earth-suits—to name a few. When we have dug deep into God’s word and laid our foundation upon the unshakable truth of relying on Jesus alone for salvation, we will not be moved or blown away.

Susie: We will be able to stand in the day of God’s judgment because our faith in Jesus will cover us in His righteousness. He is our rock, and we shall not be moved because He Himself enables us to stand.

Romans 14:4 (NIV) Who are you to judge someone else’s servant? To their own master, servants stand or fall. And they will stand, for the Lord is able to make them stand.

Luke 6:49 But he that heareth, and doeth not, is like a man that without a foundation built an house upon the earth; against which the stream did beat vehemently, and immediately it fell; and the ruin of that house was great.

Susie: Matthew makes it clear that this house was not only directly on the earth, but on sandy soil! I love the Complete Jewish Bible translation:

Matthew 7:26-27 (CJB) But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not act on them will be like a stupid man who built his house on sand. The rain fell, the rivers flooded, the wind blew and beat against that house, and it collapsed — and its collapse was horrendous!

Susan: If one does not have Jesus as his/her foundation, he or she cannot stand in the struggles of every day life. The only way a person can stand firm in the day of God’s judgment is to stand on the relationship with Jesus, the Rock of our salvation, by the grace of God imparted to us by Jesus’s death on the cross and the victory of His resurrection from death.

Susie: This passage reminded me of a hymn we sang often in the church I grew up in. Edward Mote wrote this lyric around 1834, and immediately, the Lord used it to encourage the dying wife of a friend. Below is a link to hear “On Christ The Solid Rock, I Stand:”

Ponder This and Apply It: What is the foundation of your life? Is it your membership in a certain church or denomination? Is it the fact that you have been immersed in baptism? Is it that you try to be a “good” person? None of those answers will stand before a Holy, All-Knowing, All-Seeing God. Are you certain that your hope is in Jesus, the Rock of our salvation, alone; or are you trusting other things? Take stock of your commitment to Jesus today. Surrender your entire being to Him. Then the foundation of the rest of your life will stand strong no matter what you face on this earth, and you will be able to stand before a Holy God “dressed in His righteousness alone.”

Friday, February 23, 2018


Luke 6:37-42

Luke 6:37 Judge not, and ye shall not be judged: condemn not, and ye shall not be condemned: forgive, and ye shall be forgiven:

Susie: Jesus is not saying that we should never judge or discern but rather that we should not be hypocritical or judge on face value only. In other passages, Jesus speaks of judging righteously, not casting pearls before swine, being discerning, etc.:

John 7:24 Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment.

Matthew 7:6 Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you.

Hebrews 5:14 But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.

Susan: Jesus is saying not to rush to judgement but to take time to discern the truth and the appropriate action in a given situation, whether to separate yourself completely or how to handle the situation with the same mercy God has shown to you.

Susie: We should not be quick to condemn another person because we should remember that Jesus redeemed us rather than condemning us. The confrontation of sin in a person’s life should always be coupled with the offer of the solution for sin—surrendering one’s life to Jesus.  By the same token, one evidence of our changed life is the ability to freely forgive as we have been freely forgiven.  

Susan: When you come to a person out of concern and caring for them, they are more receptive to a confrontation of their sin, or as James Robison would say, “Carefrontation rather than confrontation.”

Ephesians 4:15 But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ:

Luke 6:38 Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again.

Gill’s Exposition of the Entire Bible as found on

Give, and it shall be given unto you,.... Give liberally of your worldly substance to indigent persons, as you have an opportunity, according to your ability, and as cases require: and it shall be returned again to great advantage; with great recompense, either in temporals or spirituals, or both. . .

Susie: This is in the context of not judging others rashly and harshly and forgiving as we have been forgiven. If we give generously to those in need—whether that be monetary, emotional, physical, or spiritual need—we will receive generously what the Lord knows we need. If we are stingy in giving, we will receive less. This is NOT in the context of giving a tithe or offering to God and does not promise monetary blessings in return for those who obey the Lord by giving.

Luke 6:39 And he spake a parable unto them, Can the blind lead the blind? shall they not both fall into the ditch?

Susan: If you are not living righteously, can you teach someone else how to live righteously? People learn more from what they see you do than what you say. Being a living example of following Jesus says more than mere words.

Luke 6:40 The disciple is not above his master: but every one that is perfect shall be as his master.

Luke 6:40 (VOICE) You can’t turn out better than your teacher; when you’re fully taught, you will resemble your teacher.

Susie: If you are the teacher, you have a responsibility to exemplify the teachings of Jesus in words and deeds because the one you disciple will eventually become your mini-me. If you are a new Christian, seek one who is living what they believe to mentor you because you will become like them as you mature. Of course, Jesus is our supreme teacher, and we all hope to emulate Him and become more and more Christlike.

Susan: Perfection, in this world, is impossible but we are to press on; and eventually when we graduate to our heavenly home, our graduation gift will be to be like Jesus.

Philippians 3:12(NIV) Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me.

1 John 3:2 (NIV) Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when Christ appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is.

Luke 6:41-42 And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but perceivest not the beam that is in thine own eye? Either how canst thou say to thy brother, Brother, let me pull out the mote that is in thine eye, when thou thyself beholdest not the beam that is in thine own eye? Thou hypocrite, cast out first the beam out of thine own eye, and then shalt thou see clearly to pull out the mote that is in thy brother's eye.

Susan: Don’t pick apart others’ lives until you have done a thorough examination of your own life. We should turn the critical eye on ourselves before trying to critique others in their walk with the Lord.

1 Timothy 4:16 (Phillips) Keep a critical eye both upon your own life and on the teaching you give, and if you continue to follow the line I have indicated you will not only save your own soul but the souls of many of your hearers as well.

Ponder this and apply it – Sometimes, those of us who have been in church for a long time can become judgmental of others. We tend to expect new believers and even non-believers to behave according to the Word of God, forgetting that at one time, we had to be taught and nurtured in obedience to Jesus. Take a moment and truly examine yourself. Look not only at your observable actions but at the condition of your heart. Before assessing another person’s life, ask the Lord to reveal any area where you need to conform to His ways. Forgive as He has forgiven you, give as generously as He has given you, and show mercy as He has shown it to you.

Tuesday, February 20, 2018


Luke 6:27-36

Luke 6:27 But I say unto you which hear, Love your enemies, do good to them which hate you,

Susan: Part of me wishes the Lord had left this passage out of His sermon.

Susie: Obedience to the command to love our enemies and be good to those who hate us can only be achieved by the power of the Holy Spirit within the believer.

Susan: This command is right up there with thanking God in and for everything, even my pain, no matter what.

Susie: It is one thing to say, “I choose to love my enemies,” but another thing entirely to do good things for them.

Susan: This seemingly impossible task is only possible as we are God’s instrument of compassion in the hands of the Holy Spirit.

Luke 6:28 Bless them that curse you, and pray for them which despitefully use you.

Susie: By “pray for them,” I do not think Jesus means to pray they go away and leave me alone. I should pray for God to draw them to Jesus and bless them as objects of His grace.

Susan: We should pray that Jesus draws them into the transformative reality of salvation.

Susie: When we see that type of prayer answered, our enemies become our brothers and sisters in the Lord. Reading the stories at is a humbling experience as so many of them express the desire to see the salvation of the very ones who persecuted them.

Luke 6:29 And unto him that smiteth thee on the one cheek offer also the other; and him that taketh away thy cloak forbid not to take thy coat also.

Susan: This is not a blanket statement that we are not to resist all forms of abuse. John MacArthur clarifies it well:

MacArthur Study Bible note on similar passage in Matthew 5:

5:39 not to resist an evil person. Like v. 38, this deals only with matters of personal retaliation, not criminal offenses or acts of military aggression. Jesus applied this principle of non-retaliation to affronts against one’s dignity (v. 39), lawsuits to gain one’s personal assets (v. 40), infringements on one’s liberty (v. 41), and violations of property rights (v. 42). He was calling for a full surrender of all personal rights.

Susie: In Matthew’s account of the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus says if someone forces a person to go a mile, he should go two. Roman soldiers could force a person to carry their pack for one mile only. By going that second mile voluntarily, the Christian would be doing good for their enemy.

Luke 6:30 Give to every man that asketh of thee; and of him that taketh away thy goods ask them not again.

Susie: If someone has a need you are able to meet, give to them willingly without expecting anything in return. This was not a new concept. The Lord set up “Sabbath Years” through Moses in which all debts were canceled.

Deuteronomy 15:1-2 (VOICE) Moses: At the end of every seventh year, cancel all debts.  This is how it will work: anyone who has made a loan to someone else will just let the debtor keep whatever he’s borrowed. That is, if the loan was made to a fellow citizen, to another Israelite, the lender won’t demand repayment because it has been announced that the Eternal is canceling all the debts of His servants.

Luke 6:31 And as ye would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise.

Susan: This is the principle that we were taught as children called “The Golden Rule.”

Susie: Jewish rabbis and even other religions taught a similar concept but stated it negatively—Do not to something to others that you would not want done to you. 

Susan: Jesus, however, elevated this and taught it in the affirmative. We are to do good things to and for others like we would want them to do for us because it is the right thing.

Susie: This is placed in the passage on doing good to our enemies which tells me we do not make an exception to the Golden Rule just because we do not think a person deserves to be treated well. We are to treat everyone like we would want to be treated.

Luke 6:32 For if ye love them which love you, what thank have ye? for sinners also love those that love them.

Luke 6:32 (NIV) If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners love those who love them.

Susie: Jesus is saying, “Don’t pat yourself on the back for returning love to someone who already loves you.” The greater love is to emulate the love of Jesus who loved us unconditionally even while we were His enemies.

Romans 5:8 But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.

Luke 6:33 And if ye do good to them which do good to you, what thank have ye? for sinners also do even the same.

Susie: I think of a couple of common sayings, “One good turn deserves another” and “I’ll scratch your back if you scratch mine.” It is fairly common, even among non-believers, to do something good for someone who has done something good for us.

Susan: Even evil people will return a favor. Even among criminals there is a semblance of a code of honor.

Susie: However, Jesus teaches that we are to do good for people even if they never have and probably never will return the favor.

Luke 6:34 And if ye lend to them of whom ye hope to receive, what thank have ye? for sinners also lend to sinners, to receive as much again.

Susan: If you lend when you know you will get it back, what has that garnered in the Kingdom of God? If you lend generously to others with no expectation of return, God is able to give back to you according to His will.

Susie: Do not expect anything from others, but rely on God to take care of your needs when you are generous to others.

Philippians 4:19 But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.

Luke 6:35 But love ye your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again; and your reward shall be great, and ye shall be the children of the Highest: for he is kind unto the unthankful and to the evil.

Susan: Giving generously, unconditionally and loving our enemies is foolproof evidence that we truly are the children of God.

Susie: In obeying these commands of Jesus, we are imitating His behavior because God gives generously to both believers and non-believers. For example, God provides sunlight and rain to grow crops for food not just for those who love Him but for all mankind.  This is what is known as “Common Grace.” It is the good that God does for everyone.

Luke 6:36 Be ye therefore merciful, as your Father also is merciful.

Susan: Mercy is a choice to be compassionate rather than punitive.

Micah 6:8 He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the Lord require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?

Numbers 14:18a The Lord is long-suffering and of great mercy forgiving iniquity and transgression

Ephesians 4:32 And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you.

Ponder this and apply it: You may not have an obvious enemy in the sense of someone who is persecuting you or at war against you. However, is there someone you cannot seem to forgive? Someone who has hurt you deeply? Pray for them. Ask the Lord to enable you to forgive and perhaps even show kindness to them. Forgive as He has forgiven you—unconditionally and completely even though you did not deserve it. 

Monday, February 19, 2018


Luke 6:20-26

This passage of the “Sermon on the Plateau” is similar to the “Sermon on the Mount” found in Matt. 5:1—7:29. It could be that Jesus used similar sermons on different occasions or that this was Luke’s account of the same account.

The IVP New Testament Commentary Series found on has an excellent article on Luke 6:20-26.

Luke 6:20 And he lifted up his eyes on his disciples, and said, Blessed be ye poor: for yours is the kingdom of God.

Matthew 5:3 Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

Susan: Many translations substitute the word “happy” for blessed, but blessed means much more than that. Blessed has the connotation of the favor of God resting on the individual who is the object of God’s grace.

Susie: God’s favor rests on those who are poor. Poor in what way?

Susan: Those who followed Jesus were often poor by financial measure because of being ostracized, disowned, and isolated from the Jewish community. Poverty could have also been a result of fleeing persecution.

Susie: As Matthew noted, this include those poor in spirit. Those who realize their spiritual poverty are the once who turn to Christ as the only means to salvation, knowing they could never earn or deserve God’s grace.

Susan: Those who recognize their impoverished souls and seek reconciliation with God and find freedom for the imprisonment of sin by trusting Jesus are the ones who are truly blessed.

Luke 6:21 Blessed are ye that hunger now: for ye shall be filled. Blessed are ye that weep now: for ye shall laugh.

Susie: The followers of Christ were often physically hungry, but then as well as now there is a greater implication which Matthew’s account brings out.
Matthew 5:6 Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.

Susan: Hungering and thirsting after righteousness is intensely desiring right relationship with, to be in covenant with your Creator. People who recognize that they need that above all else are being drawn by God. When they seek Him above all else, He will provide for their physical needs as well as the spiritual. They will lack no good thing.

Susie: When we realize our need and turn to Jesus, He fills us with the Holy Spirit who instructs us in righteousness. Next, Jesus addresses those who weep. Matthew used the word “mourn”.

Matthew 5:4 Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.
Susie: I ask myself, “Why or what are they mourning?” I’ve heard it preached that they were mourning their sinful state and would be comforted by salvation. Perhaps they were mourning family members lost due to persecution or the loss of relationships due to following Jesus. Either way, Jesus promises they will be comforted.

Susan: Jesus says in His word that those who have trusted and believed in Him shall be comforted even to the point of Him personally drying their tears. I am looking forward to that day because I have cried many bottles full (Psalm 56:8).

Revelation 7:17b and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes.

Susie: These “beatitudes” correspond with the messianic prophecy found in Isaiah which Jesus quoted in part when He preached in Nazareth:

Isaiah 61:1-3 The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me; because the Lord hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound; To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all that mourn; To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that he might be glorified.

Luke 6:22-23 Blessed are ye, when men shall hate you, and when they shall separate you from their company, and shall reproach you, and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of man's sake. Rejoice ye in that day, and leap for joy: for, behold, your reward is great in heaven: for in the like manner did their fathers unto the prophets.

Susan: The persecution spoken of here in Luke’s Gospel is directly linked to the person’s devotion to Jesus Christ and His message.

Susie: First century Christians were ostracized, even kicked out of, Jewish communities or even their own families. Later they would be persecuted by both Jews and Romans, even to the point of imprisonment or death. The Apostle Paul is a prime example of someone who suffered much persecution but realized He was truly blessed, an object of God’s grace.

Susan: Remember, do not think that you have been orphaned by God when you are persecuted. On the contrary jump for joy. He sees and knows your faithfulness, and your reward will be substantial by heavenly standards.

Susie: Jesus told His disciples they would be in good company because the Old Testament prophets were persecuted for proclaiming God’s truth as well.

Luke 6:24 But woe unto you that are rich! for ye have received your consolation.

Susie: Those who have focused their energy on amassing earthly wealth rather than treasure stored in Heaven have already received all the good they are going to get (Matthew 6:20 and Matthew 16:25). Rather than realizing their spiritual poverty, they relied on their own self-sufficiency.

Luke 6:25 Woe unto you that are full! for ye shall hunger. Woe unto you that laugh now! for ye shall mourn and weep.

Susan: Those who are relying on their own merit or wealth have stuff but no substance. The things of this world give momentary satisfaction at best. Even the things the Lord has given for us to enjoy here are fleeting. It is not until we are with the Lord forever and ever that we will be able to experience joy in its totality.

Susie: And that joy, that complete fulfillment is only for those who hungered and thirsted for the only essential thing, the righteousness of Jesus imputed to them because of His finished work on the cross.

Susan: Those who laugh mockingly, derisively, in a taunting manner toward those who believe in Jesus may think they have the last laugh, but they do not. They will mourn and weep when they realize they are separated from the Lord and His goodness forever.

Psalm 2:1-6 (VOICE) You are wondering: What has provoked the nations to embrace anger and chaos? Why are the people making plans to pursue their own vacant and empty greatness, Leaders of nations stand united; rulers put their heads together, plotting against the Eternal One and His Anointed King, trying to figure out How they can throw off the gentle reign of God’s love, step out from under the restrictions of His claims to advance their own schemes. At first, the Power of heaven laughs at their silliness. The Eternal mocks their ignorant selfishness. But His laughter turns to rage, and He rebukes them.
    As God displays His righteous anger, they begin to know the meaning of fear. He says, “I am the One who appointed My king who reigns from Zion, My mount of holiness.
    He is the one in charge.”

Luke 6:26 Woe unto you, when all men shall speak well of you! for so did their fathers to the false prophets.

Susan: When people direct all kinds of flattery toward you, watch out! In the Old Testament, it was the false prophets that were praised and elevated. See 1 Kings 22 for an example of false prophets.  

Susie: Yes. Remember that Jeremiah was a good guy and he was tossed into a cistern!

Ponder this: Would Jesus tell you that you are blessed or would He say, “Woe to you?” Have you recognized the fact that you are incapable of earning a place in Heaven because you could never be “good enough” or do enough good deeds? Have you seen yourself as “poor in spirit” and turned to Jesus to deliver you from your sin? If not, today is a good day to surrender your will to His will, to let go of your “right” to yourself and realize that the One who created you is the only One with the ability to direct your life correctly. If you need to talk about this with someone, we would be happy to hear from you. Simply click on the “contact/prayer/donate” tab on our website at and email us!

Thursday, February 15, 2018


Luke 6:12-19

Luke 6:12 And it came to pass in those days, that he went out into a mountain to pray, and continued all night in prayer to God.

Susan: Jesus spent dedicated, lengthy times of prayer prior to major decisions and events in His ministry. Concerning the selection of the Apostles, Jesus prayed all night long.

Luke 6:13 And when it was day, he called unto him his disciples: and of them he chose twelve, whom also he named apostles;

Susie: When the next day dawned, he called His disciples (learners) and chose twelve of them to be His Apostles (emissaries or sent ones). These twelve would be given special duties and authority. You can read an account of the initial calling of some of these Apostles at John 1:35-51.

Luke 6:14 Simon, (whom he also named Peter,) and Andrew his brother, James and John, Philip and Bartholomew,

Susan: The two teams of brothers, Simon and Andrew and James and John (sons of Zebedee), had been fishing partners on the Sea of Galilee when Jesus called them (Luke 5:4-11).

Susie: Philip and Bartholomew are mentioned together many times. It is believed that Bartholomew is the same person as Nathanael, who Philip brought to Jesus (John 1:45).

Luke 6:15 Matthew and Thomas, James the son of Alphaeus, and Simon called Zelotes,

Susan: Matthew, also known as Levi, had been a tax collector when he received the call to follow Jesus. In Mark, Levi is called the son of Alphaeus which leads some to believe that he and James the son of Alphaeus may have been brothers. Other commentators disagree.  Thomas called Didymus (the twin) in John 11:16 is most famous doubting that Jesus had risen (John 20:27).

Susie: After Jesus’s resurrection and the filling of the Holy Spirit, the apostles went out to evangelize. Thomas, once known as the doubter, went various places. There is evidence to confirm that he evangelized in India and was martyred there by being thrust through with a spear. He is buried in Mylapore, India, now a suburb of Madras. You can read more about this once doubter turned fearless evangelist at

Susan: Simon called Zelotes (Zealot) must have been a part of the political movement of that name.

Zondervan Illustrated Bible Dictionary:

Zealot - . . . the term Zealot refers to a violent Jewish sect in NT times that opposed Roman domination . . .

Susie: At first Simon the Zealot may have seen Jesus as the King who would finally overthrow Rome, but in time his zeal would be focused not on the earthly kingdom of Israel but being an Apostle of the Kingdom of God.

Luke 6:16 And Judas the brother of James, and Judas Iscariot, which also was the traitor.

Susie: Judas the brother of James was also known as Thaddeus (Matthew 10:3 and Mark 3:18). The biblical writers were always careful to differentiate between this faithful Judas and Judas from Iscariot who betrayed Jesus. For more information on what happened to the apostles after the resurrection, read Foxe’s Book of Martyrs. I personally believe it should be read by every believer.

Luke 6:17-18 And he came down with them, and stood in the plain, and the company of his disciples, and a great multitude of people out of all Judaea and Jerusalem, and from the sea coast of Tyre and Sidon, which came to hear him, and to be healed of their diseases; And they that were vexed with unclean spirits: and they were healed.

Susie: After appointing the twelve apostles, Jesus came down the mountain a bit and stood on a plain or plateau. His other disciples were there as well as a great crowd of people from the city of Jerusalem, the surrounding province of Judea, and even from as far away as the coastal towns of Tyre and Sidon.

Susan: All those people came to hear dynamic teaching and to be delivered of their diseases and maladies by the power that radiated from Jesus. Those who were oppressed or even possessed by unclean spirits (demons) were delivered as well.

Luke 6:19 And the whole multitude sought to touch him: for there went virtue out of him, and healed them all.

Luke 6:19 (MSG) Everyone was trying to touch him—so much energy surging from him, so many people healed!

Susan: The healing power of Jesus was unmistakable and obvious to all who heard Him that day.

Ponder this: We are infused with the power of Jesus because His Holy Spirit lives in and through us. We have the power to share the gospel with people and watch the Lord change their lives forever. Listen to the following song by Jeremy Camp: