Today's Good News

August 2001

08/01/01            Col. 1:1-2
This letter is from Paul, chosen by God to be an apostle of Christ Jesus, and from our brother Timothy.  It is written to God’s holy people in the city of Colosse, who are faithful brothers and sisters in Christ.

I believe in Jesus.  That makes me part of God’s holy people.  I am not qualified by my bank account, my skills, my lineage, my luck or my stature.  What qualifies me in the sight of God is the Lord Jesus Christ.

08/02/01 Isaiah 29:15
Destruction is certain for those who try to hide their plans from the LORD, who try to keep him in the dark concerning what they do! “The LORD can’t see us,” you say to yourselves. “He doesn’t know what is going on!”

If I say that I love the Lord do I treat others with care and concern or am I constantly criticizing those that are different than me? The Lord saved me and made me a member of His family. As a family member of the Lord Jesus Christ, I represent Him here on earth. When my actions are on display whose child do I act like?

08/03/01 Isaiah 32:18
My people will live in safety, quietly at home. They will be at rest.

When you are young, a good nights sleep is taken for granted. As I age I am reminded of how valuable a good nights sleep is. The Lord provides the opportunity for us to develop the kind of relationship that will enable us to live joyful, peaceful lives. His presence brings the safety that mankind yearns for.

08/04/01 Isaiah 38:1
About that time Hezekiah became deathly ill, and the prophet Isaiah son of Amoz went to visit him. He gave the king this message: “This is what the LORD says: Set your affairs in order, for you are going to die. You will not recover from this illness.”

Death is a distasteful subject. One out of one of us will die. None of us will escape death. Death brings tears of remorse and regret, so many unfinished projects, so many things unsaid. I am turning my attention to today. I will strive to remember that today is all I am promised.

08/05/01 Isaiah 43:1
But now, O Israel, the Lord who created you says: “Do not be afraid, I have ransomed you. I have called you by name; you are mine.

God knows my name. I am bought with a price. He has fully paid for me. I belong to him.

08/06/01 Isaiah 47:4
Our Redeemer, whose name is the Lord Almighty, is the Holy One of Israel.

God is able. I am confident that He is. He is able to meet every need of my life. He meets the needs of my life not because I am good and certainly not because I am worthy. He meets the needs of my life because He loves me.

08/07/01 Isaiah 53:6
All of us have strayed away like sheep. We have left God’s paths to follow our own. Yet the LORD laid on him the guilt and sins of us all.

I am a sinner. Unless I am willing to face my sinfulness I will continue to stumble and fall. When I deal honestly with my sin by admitting it to the Lord and walking away with Him from it I will never be free. If I control my life I will be a salve to my sin. If I let Jesus Christ control my life I will be free.

08/08/01 Isaiah 58:2
Yet they act so pious! They come to the Temple every day and seem delighted to hear my laws. You would almost think this was a righteous nation that would never abandon its God. They love to make a show of coming to me and asking me to take action on their behalf.

I listen to folks talk about how things should be. They discuss fairness and equity and goodness. Interesting that these same people seldom use God’s Word except to support their specific view. God’s Word begins in Genesis 1:1 and ends in Revelation 22:21. It is complete, total and authoritative. It is not negotiable. It is a divine revelation.

08/09/01 Col. 1:9
So we have continued praying for you ever since we first heard about you. We ask God to give you a complete understanding of what he wants to do in your lives, and we ask him to make you wise with spiritual wisdom.

I believe that the Lord wants me to pray for others. He wants me to pray that His will be done. He is pleased when I trust those that I am praying for to Him. My prayer for you is that the Lord blesses you and that His good purpose be accomplished in your life.

08/10/01 Col. 1:15
Christ is the visible image of the invisible God. He existed before God made anything at all and is supreme over all creation.

Jesus is never surprised by my failure. When I am sitting on the sidelines moaning over a defeat, He reminds me of how excited He is about my life. The plan he laid out for me before the foundation of the world was an exciting plan. My life is valuable and worthwhile. Jesus is Lord.

08/11/01 Col. 1:28
So everywhere we go, we tell everyone about Christ. We warn them and teach them with all the wisdom God has given us, for we want to present them to God, perfect in their relationship to Christ.

The Christian life is not a spectator event. I am charged with the responsibility of knowing God. To know the Lord I must spend time with Him, in His Word and in conversation. When I tell others about Jesus, I am simply telling what the Father has told me. It would be scary if I had nothing to tell.

08/12/01 Col 2:1-3
I want you to know how much I have agonized for you and the church at Laodicea, and for many other friends who have never known me personally. My goal is that they will be encouraged and knit together by strong ties of love. I want them to have full confidence because they have complete understanding of God’s secret plan, which is Christ himself. In him lie hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.

I am to pray for others. I need to pray for their physical well being. More importantly I need to pray for their spiritual development. Spiritual warfare is real. It is a tough battle. It is waged on a battlefield that I can only access through prayer.

08/13/01 Isaiah 64:6
We are all infected and impure with sin. When we proudly display our righteous deeds, we find they are but filthy rags. Like autumn leaves, we wither and fall. And our sins, like the wind, sweep us away.

I must never take my focus off of Jesus. Jesus deals with my sin. Jesus takes me to the Father. Without Jesus giving me guidance and direction every day I will flounder and fall.

08/14/01 Isaiah 65:17
“Look! I am creating new heavens and a new earth-so wonderful that no on will even think about the old ones anymore.”

Heaven will be a great place. When this life ends I will go to spend eternity with the Father. I must never forget that life will only improve. The dark tunnel that I often find myself in has an opening; it is Jesus Christ the Lord. He is God’s everything. Jesus brings me through this life into eternity with the Father.

08/15/01 Jeremiah 1:4
The Lord gave me a message. He said, “I knew you before I formed you in your mother’s womb. Before you were born I set you apart and appointed you as my spokesman to the world.”

God has a plan for my life. When I accepted Christ as my Lord and Savior that pre-existent plan for me came alive. God counted me successful, worthy and lovable. By His grace and my faith I accepted Jesus and got every good thing the Lord has for me.

08/16/01 Jeremiah 1:11-12
Then the Lord said to me, “Look Jeremiah! What do you see?” And I replied, “I see a branch from an almond tree.” And the Lord said, “That’s right, and it means that I am watching, and I will surely carry out my threats of punishment.”

I believe in the judgment of God. People who do not read the Old Testament forget that God’s Word begins in Genesis and ends in Revelation. The wisdom of the world will become foolishness before the Word of God.

08/17/01 Jeremiah 10:1-3
Hear the word of the LORD, O Israel! This is what the LORD says: “Do not act like other nations who try to read their future in the stars. Do not be afraid of their predictions, even though other nations are terrified by them. Their ways are futile and foolish. They cut down a tree and carve an idol.

Jesus has promised that He will guide me. He knows my future. He will walk with me every step of the way. He wants me to grow in my relationship with Him and to serve Him. He will take care of the future.

08/18/01 Jeremiah 16:19
LORD, you are my strength and fortress, my refuge in the day of trouble! Nations from around the world will come to you and say, “Our ancestors were foolish, for they worshiped worthless idols.”

I am going through a time when I feel particularly weak. The experience has been very good. I have had to rely totally on the Lord’s power. He has consistently met each one of my requests with renewed provision. He has calmed my anxiety, encouraged my soul and provided for my needs every time I have asked. This particular passage speaks from experience and the Lord has verified that experience in my heart.

08/19/01 Colossians 2:8
Don’t let anyone lead you astray with empty philosophy and high-sounding nonsense that come from human thinking and from the evil powers of this world, and not from Christ.

People are interesting. Some folks are extremely successful at a particular skill or have a phenomenal gift. It is hard for them to believe that they can’t reason their way to God. God’s Word clearly states that our relationship with the Father is based upon our belief in the Lord Jesus Christ. Jesus is God’s only resource for a lost world.

08/20/01 Colossians 2:9-10
For in Christ the fullness of God lives in a human body, and you are complete through your union with Christ. He is the Lord over every ruler and authority in the universe.

When we come to Jesus we have come to the Father. Jesus is God’s everything, he alone holds the meaning to life because He is life.

08/21/01 Colossians 2:13-14
You were dead because of your sins and because your sinful nature was not yet cut away. Then God made you alive with Christ. He forgave all our sins. He canceled the record that contained the charges against us. He took it and destroyed it by nailing it to Christ’s cross.

It’s hard to read this with a dry eye. Jesus took my sin. I think about some of the things I do that so deeply hurt the Father, and me. Jesus reached out and accepted the pain and agony of my sin and died for me.

08/22/01 Colossians 2:20-21
You have died with Christ, and he has set you free from the evil powers of this world. So why do you keep on following rules of the world, such as, “Don’t handle, don’t eat, don’t touch.”

I grew up without training in the things of God. When I committed my life to Christ, being a Christian seemed like an impossible dream. But, as I let the Holy Spirit have control of the everyday things in my life my habits began to change. Jesus ministered to me. He changed me from the inside out.

08/23/01 Colossians 3:1-2
Since you have been raised to new life with Christ, set your sights on the realities of heaven, where Christ sits at God’s right hand in the place of honor and power. Let heaven fill your thoughts. Do not think only about things down here on earth.

Today is always so real. I struggle with the surprises and disappointments. Often I get overwhelmed and forget that this is not the way it will always be. Eternity will be spent with Jesus. If I can trust Him with my eternal salvation surely I can trust him with my brief life.

08/24/01 Colossians 3:5
So put to death the sinful, earthly things lurking within you. Have nothing to do with sexual sin, impurity, lust, and shameful desires. Don’t be greedy for the good things of this life, for that is idolatry.

I am called to stop the sinful things I do. The first step is my responsibility. The power to keep walking is from the Lord.

08/25/01 Colossians 3:11
In this new life, it doesn’t matter if you are a Jew or a Gentile, circumcised or uncircumcised, barbaric, uncivilized, slave, or free. Christ is all that matters, and he lives in all of us.

I have no excuse. Jesus loves me. He loves me because He created me. My value is not based on worldly things, like skill or wealth or intellect, my value is based on the Lord’s love for me. I am His and He is mine.

08/26/01 Colossians 3:12
Since God chose you to be the holy people whom he loves, you must clothe yourselves with tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience.

I am the one that must change. When I survey the lives of those around me and notice all of their weaknesses and shortcomings, I am called to change. The only way that I can help others to grow is for them to see Jesus in me.

08/27/01 Colossians 3:13
You must make allowance for each other’s faults and forgive the person who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others.

I am the one that can forgive you. You may be wrong, I may be right but the bottom line is that whatever the situation is I can forgive you. Why you might ask? I can forgive you of whatever you have done to me because Jesus has already forgiven me.

08/28/01 Colossians 3:14
And the most important piece of clothing you must wear is love. Love is what binds us all together in perfect harmony.

When I am down and out and feeling unloved I turn to God’s Word. As I read and pray I am reminded that love is a gift. If I will give love I will get love. Amazingly with that change of focus the emotion of feeling unloved disappears. There is real healing in the activity of caring for others.

08/29/01 Colossians 3:15
And let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts. For as members of one body you are all called to live in peace. And always be thankful.

God is the author of peace. When I turn my life to Him one of the first benefits I receive is peace of mind and heart. As I accept His peace, my gratitude for His peace will increase the peace I have.

08/30/01 Colossians 3:16
Let the words of Christ, in all their richness, live in your hearts and make you wise. Use his words to teach and counsel each other. Sing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs to God with thankful hearts.

I thought I was smart. Christ has taught me wisdom. He has enabled me to take my knowledge and translate it into His language of the heart. My gifts and skills were given to me by Christ to minister to His children.

08/31/01 Colossians 3:17
And whatever you do or say, let it be as a representative of the Lord Jesus, all the while giving thanks through him to God the Father.

I am under orders. My opportunities for preaching and teaching are divine appointments. I think the Lord may want you to hear this. You are His child and agent. Be about His work.

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Clay Corvin

Clay Corvin is currently a Bible Teacher and occasional preacher at Bethel Community Baptist Church in New Orleans. He is the retired VP Business and Professor of Admin at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary after completing 38 years as their Business Administrator. 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. He ministers today as Co-pastor of the Bethel Community Baptist Church and seeks to share the Gospel with everyone. Jesus is Lord!