Today's Good News

April 2004

4/1/04 Matthew Mt 27:64
So we request that you seal the tomb until the third day. This will prevent his disciples from coming and stealing his body and then telling everyone he came back to life! If that happens, we’ll be worse off than we were at first.”

WORLD
The world is always trying to control God. It thinks its power, plans and privileges will have an affect upon the eternal Lord. God’s plans will not be changed. You and I are charged with the responsibility of living in submission to the Lord Jesus. We ask Him for direction and obey His Word. Let us make sure that we are not joining in with the world and trying to control the Lord. It makes for a very disappointing experience.

4/2/04 Mark 6:14
Herod Antipas, the king, soon heard about Jesus, because people everywhere were talking about him. Some were saying, “This must be John the Baptist come back to life again. That is why he can do such miracles.”

WORLD
The world is always looking for miracles. Not to change their lives but to control their environment. For a Christian, miracles are simply a part of everyday life. Jesus opens our eyes to the activity of the eternal God in our everyday life. The Father wants a relationship with us, gives each one of us equal access and is always looking out for our best interest in love. What a miracle, that the Lord would be interested in me. I cannot control my world but I can surrender to the power of the Lord Jesus Christ. That surrender creates the ultimate miracle of a daily relationship with the Lord. Jesus saved me and wants to spend time with me. Thank you Lord.

4/3/04 Mark 8:35
If you try to keep your life for yourself, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake and for the sake of the Good News, you will find true life.

SERVICE
I am called to imitate Jesus. I am blessed to be able to grow in Christ likeness. God loves people most of all. When I act like Jesus I will serve those that I am with.

4/4/04 Mark 10:17
As he was starting out on a trip, a man came running up to Jesus, knelt down, and asked, “Good Teacher, what should I do to get eternal life?”

SURRENDER
Jesus calls me to surrender my life to him. This is not to deprive me of anything. Only Jesus knows the end from the beginning and everything that I will need each day. My surrender to Him first gives me eternal life. My surrender to Him daily gives me wisdom, mercy and grace. There is great joy in a personal relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ.

4/5/04 Mark 10:29-30
And Jesus replied, “I assure you that everyone who has given up house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or property, for my sake and for the Good News, will receive now in return, a hundred times over, houses, brothers, sisters, mothers, children, and property – with persecutions. And in the world to come they will have eternal life.

TRUST
Jesus tells me that I can trust Him. The physical world is passing away. If I cast my lot with the things of this world my entire life will be a journey of diminishing returns. Everything that I think counts will be destroyed. All the things I trust in are passing away. Jesus focuses on people. Christ teaches me how to care for and serve people. People are eternal. Jesus died for people. I can trust Jesus for my salvation, my life now and the life to come.

4/6/04 Mark 10:45
For even I, the Son of Man, came here not to be served but to serve others, and to give my life as a ransom for many.”

SACRIFICE
Jesus paid the price for my sin. His sacrifice has paid my debt and is exactly what I needed to be able to have a relationship with Him. I will incur the wrath of the world as I live for Jesus. I have full access to His empowerment of me as I live for Him. I can serve Jesus.

4/7/04 Mark 16:8
The women fled from the tomb, trembling and bewildered, saying nothing to anyone because they were too frightened to talk. Then they reported all these instructions briefly to Peter and his companions. Afterward Jesus himself sent them out from east to west with the sacred and unfailing message of salvation that gives eternal life.

FEAR
Jesus calms my fears. He is able to deliver me and will. I can live for Jesus and serve Jesus because He is Lord. His Lordship extends to every aspect of my life and reaches from this moment until eternity and beyond.
Jesus loves you.

4/8/04 Luke 4:4
But Jesus told him, “No! The Scriptures say, ‘People need more than bread for their life.’ ”

CHOICES
Life is full of choices. You and I make too many choices without the Lord’s guidance. We must make a living. We must work hard. We must allocate time every day without fail to get the Lord’s guidance for our life. A life poorly lived will create a poor life. Jesus would that we lead an abundant life.

4/9/04 Luke 6:9
Then Jesus said to his critics, “I have a question for you. Is it legal to do good deeds on the Sabbath, or is it a day for doing harm? Is this a day to save life or to destroy it?”

CHOICES
Everyday we choose to serve the Lord or serve self. Self-serving people are always looking for ways to blame someone else for their problems or difficulties. Those that serve the Lord are focused on caring for those around them. God loves people most of all. Life is real and bad things happen. Sometimes we do not nor will not know why. The issue is not why something happened. The issue is will I serve the Lord?

4/10/04 Luke 7:22
Then he told John’s disciples, “Go back to John and tell him what you have seen and heard – the blind see, the lame walk, the lepers are cured, the deaf hear, the dead are raised to life, and the Good News is being preached to the poor.

CHOICES
I choose Jesus. I choose to take everything that happens to me to the Lord. I choose to live in spite of the problems. I choose to serve and to sacrifice and while doing both to rejoice. Paul sang in a Roman prison. I will sing as I rejoice in the life that the Lord gave me. My life is merely a shadow and one day in eternity the real me will stand before the Lord of Glory for ever and ever and ever. Jesus is Lord.

4/11/04 Luke 8:14
The thorny ground represents those who hear and accept the message, but all too quickly the message is crowded out by the cares and riches and pleasures of this life. And so they never grow into maturity.

CHOICES
I am responsible for my life. I make the hard choices. I am the one that controls my time. I am the one that chooses to let the grace and wisdom of God pour out on my life or refuse the Lord’s help.

4/12/04 Luke 8:55
And at that moment her life returned, and she immediately stood up! Then Jesus told them to give her something to eat.

CHOICES
Real life is composed of real choices. There is no place in our lives to separate “church” from “daily life.” Jesus is God’s everything and He, the Lord, must be involved in all that we do. Miracles happen when we least expect it. When we are constantly with Jesus, He will constantly be guiding and directing our path. It is on the pathway of surrender and suffering for the Lord that miracles happen.

4/13/04 Luke 9:7
When reports of Jesus’ miracles reached Herod Antipas, he was worried and puzzled because some were saying, “This is John the Baptist come back to life again.”

CHOICES
The world is always self-centered and consistently chooses power, privilege and personal gain. Herod was superstitious and religious. His concern was not for John or the things of God. You and I are called to focus our life on the Lord. We will consistently operate out of weakness, selflessness and sacrifice. The Lord will consistently be glorified and victorious when we let Him have control of us.

4/14/04 Luke 12:25
Can all your worries add a single moment to your life? Of course not!

CHOICES
There are too many bad things to worry about in the world. I can spend my life in worry about things and events that I cannot change or I can give myself to Jesus and let the Lord change me. When I change the Lord will be victorious. All those things the world worries about will be non-issues in my life.

4/15/04 Luke 14:26
“If you want to be my follower you must love me more than your own father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters – yes, more than your own life. Otherwise, you cannot be my disciple.

CHOICES
For the world, love is always an emotion. Those that follow Jesus understand that love is an action. When my life is focused on Jesus and I love Him with all my heart, my actions to all those that I live with, family, friends and strangers will be care and concern. Real love is evidenced by Jesus working through me. In the flesh I will always put self first. In Christ I will put Jesus first. When Jesus is first I will be able to love people.

4/16/04 Luke 15:22-24
“But his father said to the servants, ‘Quick! Bring the finest robe in the house and put it on him. Get a ring for his finger, and sandals for his feet. And kill the calf we have been fattening in the pen. We must celebrate with a feast, for this son of mine was dead and has now returned to life. He was lost, but now he is found.’ So the party began.

CHOICES
Self centered people destroy their lives. Christ focused people identify where they are self-centered and self-serving and change. It takes real change to be able to forgive those that mistreat us. The truth is that when we learn to forgive we learn to live. Life isn’t about what I can get. Real life is about what I can give.

4/17/04 Luke 15:32
We had to celebrate this happy day. For your brother was dead and has come back to life! He was lost, but now he is found!'”

CHOICES
Love never gives up. Love is not a game where we win or lose. Love is a lifestyle that says “I value people.” God loves people most of all and that includes all people. I must be about the business of including people in my life and learn to stop excluding them. People have worth and value. When I forgive and love I am acting like Jesus.

4/18/04 Luke 17:33
Whoever clings to this life will lose it, and whoever loses this life will save it.

CHOICES
Jesus gives me life. When I stop claiming my rights and surrender to the Lord I will gain real life. I will reap what I sow. A life that sows mercy, grace and forgiveness will harvest great rewards in this life and the life to come. Give your life to Jesus and you will inherit an abundant life.

4/19/04 Luke 18:18
Once a religious leader asked Jesus this question: “Good teacher, what should I do to get eternal life?”

CHOICES
Jesus is the way, the truth and the life. I cannot do enough good to claim eternal life. I can surrender my life to Jesus and receive as His gift eternal life. People instinctively strive to know the Creator. Jesus is Lord and will give us that relationship with the Lord that we so desperately desire.

4/20/04 Luke 18:29-30
“Yes,” Jesus replied, “and I assure you, everyone who has given up house or wife or brothers or parents or children, for the sake of the Kingdom of God, will be repaid many times over in this life, as well as receiving eternal life in the world to come.”

CHOICES
Life is simple, solutions are hard. If I choose the Lord I will be able to deal with the great issues of my life that I will face as I journey towards the end of my life. People forget that life is a journey. In the process of this journey I plan today for the unknown events of tomorrow. I don’t know what will happen but I do know the One in charge of all things. He has my best interest at heart. Jesus loves me.

4/21/04 Luke 20:36
And they will never die again. In these respects they are like angels. They are children of God raised up to new life.

CHOICES
When we die in the Lord we will go immediately into His presence. We will be equal to the angels in spirituality, maturity and immortality. We are different from the angels in that we chose Jesus. What joy throughout eternity we will have as children of God. Think about the majesty and glory of the Lord. And we will be there forever. With that in mind, choose today to forgive someone you are holding a grudge against. That person the Holy Spirit has been prodding you to witness to, simply tell them about what Jesus has done for you. Let them know and let them decide.

4/22/04 Luke 21:34
“Watch out! Don’t let me find you living in careless ease and drunkenness, and filled with the worries of this life. Don’t let that day catch you unaware,

CHOICES
When I choose Jesus as my Lord and Savior I choose eternal life. The result of my choice will change my daily lifestyle. If I am the same today that I was before I knew Jesus, then chances are very good that I don’t know Jesus. When we know the Lord we will change.

4/23/04 John 4:36
The harvesters are paid good wages, and the fruit they harvest is people brought to eternal life. What joy awaits both the planter and the harvester alike!

CHOICES
God is in control. He will use me in a way that best fits me. If the Lord uses me to proclaim I can rejoice. If the Lord uses me to experience the harvest I can rejoice. The key is for me to choose to walk with the Lord everyday. Not because the world is blessing me but because the Lord loves me and I love the Lord.

4/24/04 John 5:24
“I assure you, those who listen to my message and believe in God who sent me have eternal life. They will never be condemned for their sins, but they have already passed from death into life.

CHOICES
The most important decision a person will ever make is to choose Jesus as their Lord and Savior. It has eternal consequences. It has current consequences. Choosing Jesus puts me in the Family of God. I am a child of God. My Father is actively involved in my daily life. I am actively seeking to serve the Lord.

4/25/04 John 5:26
The Father has life in himself, and he has granted his Son to have life in himself.

LIFE
Jesus gives life. It is a life that is joyous and abundant. It is a life that teaches me about the value and worth of every person.

4/26/04 John 5:28-29
Don’t be so surprised! Indeed, the time is coming when all the dead in their graves will hear the voice of God’s Son, and they will rise again. Those who have done good will rise to eternal life, and those who have continued in evil will rise to judgment.

CHOICES
I can choose Jesus as Lord and Savior of my life. Life is short and surprising. The things of the world will overrun us, distract us and abuse us. I may have chosen to put off making that decision. I may not get another chance. Jesus is coming back. Whatever I have chosen when that happens will be my choice. It will be too late to change if I have spent my life committed to the world and ignored the Lord.

4/27/04 John 5:39
“You search the Scriptures because you believe they give you eternal life. But the Scriptures point to me!

LIFE
Eternal life is in Jesus. It is His gift to us when we choose Him as Lord and Savior. Knowing about Jesus and not accepting Him is fatal. Salvation comes through Christ by faith to me. There are no grandchildren in God’s family.

4/28/04 John 5:40
Yet you refuse to come to me so that I can give you this eternal life.

LIFE
I came to Jesus because He loved me and offered me something unique, life. The world is blind, uncaring, misdirected, only the strong win, and caught up in destruction. Jesus cares for each and every person created. He would that none be lost. I wanted to be a part of that. Anyone can come to Christ. Jesus gives life.

4/29/04 John 6:27
But you shouldn’t be so concerned about perishable things like food. Spend your energy seeking the eternal life that I, the Son of Man, can give you. For God the Father has sent me for that very purpose.”

LIFE
Life is a vapor. It disappears rapidly. We have one chance. Time lost is time gone. I choose Jesus. He gives me life.

4/30/04 Mark 7:20
And then he added, “It is the thought-life that defiles you.
LIFE
I am responsible for what I think. Out of my heart come the things that I am focused on. Time with Jesus is the time that I give Him those bad, evil, misdirected thoughts. When I give them to Jesus He will give me the right kind of things to think about. I have a choice, I can surrender the evil in my heart to Jesus or spend a lifetime of being overrun and misdirected by myself.

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Clay Corvin

Clay Corvin is Co-Pastor at Bethel Community Baptist Church. He is the VP Business and Professor of Admin at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary. He was the pastor at the Brantley Baptist Center for twenty-five years. He is married to Carol Corvin and the father of three children and has three grandchildren.