Wednesday, April 28, 2010

The Heart of the Action

2 Chronicles 25:1-2 Amaziah was twenty and five years old when he began to reign, and he reigned twenty and nine years in Jerusalem. And his mother's name was Jehoaddan of Jerusalem. (2) And he did that which was right in the sight of the LORD, but not with a perfect heart.

Here in the midst of so much kingship turmoil, we read of King Amaziah, king of the Southern Tribes of Judah. We read that his actions are right were they are supposed to be, but his heart is nowhere to be found.

I wonder how many Christians this describes today? They are doing the right actions - prayer, Bible reading, attending church, etc. - but their heart is not in it. Let's all take a moment and consider the heart of our actions.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Proverb in May Preview

Hello everyone. As I mentioned in church, we will begin a new program this coming May: A Proverb a Day in May. I am encouraging everyone in our church (and those of you who read this blog who do not attend our church) to read a Proverb a day (Ex: chapter 1 on the 1st, chapter 2 on the 2nd, etc.). Every morning at 6am EST, I will post a thought about that day's chapter for you to read along with the Proverb. Then, you are encouraged to leave your thoughts or questions in the comment section.

The goal is to encourage each other in our Bible reading, while at the same time fostering an atmosphere of discussion and edification. We spend so much of our time speaking and discussing subjects that, though not bad, do nothing to edify us spiritually. I would like to change that, so let me encourage you to get involved and not only read the chapter that day, but to discuss it here.

To leave a comment and read other people's comments and question, just click on the word "Comment" at the bottom of each blog post. If you leave a comment, do make sure that your name is attached (unless you want to remain anonymous), and check back on the comment section periodically to catch up on the discussion. If you are new to this blog, and blog's in general, please feel free to "practice" leaving a comment on this post.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Teen Workers needed for Metro Detroit Area

To all those who read this blog and live in Metro Detroit: our church is looking for a couple to come and work with our Teens. We can't do much financially at this time, but as we increase we will be able to do more. If you live in the area and are looking for a place to minister and have a heart for teens/children, pray and consider our Teen Department. You can read more about the opening at

If you are interested, give me a call at 734-721-8195. If no one answers, leave a message and I will call you back as soon as possible.

God Bless,
Pastor Brad Gilbert
1033 S. Wildwood
Westland, MI 48186

Friday, April 16, 2010

Judgment - Do It For The Lord

2 Chronicles 19:6 And said to the judges, Take heed what ye do: for ye judge not for man, but for the LORD, who is with you in the judgment.

Jehoshaphat, the king of the Southern Kingdom of Judah, just was rebuked by Jehu for aligning with Ahab and the Northern Tribe of Israel in their battle of Ramoth-gilead. But, in spite of his failure in this respect, God had a good thought about Jehoshaphat: 2 Chronicles 19:3 Nevertheless there are good things found in thee, in that thou hast taken away the groves out of the land, and hast prepared thine heart to seek God.

Jehoshaphat rebounds from his mistake and begins to restore order of worship in Jerusalem. We read in our text one of the first instructions he gives, which is to the judges that they should begin to judge the people. They were to be before the people judging right and wrong. In doing so, they were to remember how God judges people (vs. 7). While this may speak judicially, there is a wider application of Christians exercising daily judgment.

The common misconception today is that we are not to judge anyone, regardless of what they are doing. We are to turn a blind eye to anything that someone may do that is contrary to the Word of God. Yet, as Christians we are to judge righteous judgment. Now, we are NOT to condemn anyone - that is God's responsibility; we are to JUDGE what is right or wrong. When Christians no longer judge between right and wrong, they soon follow after wrong.

In exercising this judgment, we would do well to remember Jehoshaphat's advice and take heed how we do so since we are doing it for the LORD. It is a part of our service for God.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Who Do We Rely On?

2Ch 16:7 And at that time Hanani the seer came to Asa king of Judah, and said unto him, Because thou hast relied on the king of Syria, and not relied on the LORD thy God, therefore is the host of the king of Syria escaped out of thine hand.

Our text today occurs after the 12 Tribes of Israel were divided and now Asa was the king of 2 southern tribes of Judah and Baasha was the king of the 10 northern tribes of Israel. Asa had just experienced what he thought was a great victory. King Baasha, had built Ramah to prevent anyone from coming to Asa and Judah. Asa goes out to confront Baasha and many of Israel die in the conflict, and Baasha stops building Ramah. Afterwards, Asa comes and takes the materials that were being used for the building of Ramah and used them to build Geba and Mizpah for Judah.

Everything sounds great, except in my description I left out one important fact: Asa took all the silver and gold from the house of the LORD and hired the King of Syria to help them in the battle. Now, the seer Hanani came to Asa with a troubling message: the king of Syria has escaped because you did not seek the LORD thy God's help.

How many victories have we celebrated in our lives, that really weren't victories at all because we excluded the LORD from the battle? How many church's are caught up in the race to build a larger church audience, and have used the help of the world and not the LORD to do so? How many families have sought the advice of doctor's and counsellors in how to fix their marriage and their families and excluded God's blueprint for our marriages and families?

May we always seek the LORDS help and guidance in all that we do. The world may have a recipe for the result that we seek, but it will be at the expense of God's approval.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

What Goes Around Comes Around

Ecclesiastes 7:21-22 Also take no heed unto all words that are spoken; lest thou hear thy servant curse thee: (22) For oftentimes also thine own heart knoweth that thou thyself likewise hast cursed others.

Solomon makes an interesting point in this portion of Scripture that I have summarized this way: What Goes Around Comes Around. Solomon is warning the reader to not spend all your time trying to find out everything everyone is saying about you and not to get too worked up over the negative things you hear. Why is that - because you yourself have said negative statements about others.

I believe this is helpful advice for all born-again believers, but especially preachers. There comes a time when we must stand up for the truth and name names and set the truth in order, but that is not what I am talking about today.

I wonder how many preachers reading this get so worked up when someone in the congregation makes a negative statement about them, yet they see no problem spending the week publicly and privately criticizing other good, fundamentally sound preachers? We teach our people of the "dangers of dishing dirt," yet how many blogs, discussion boards, etc. are filled with those same preachers typing negative comments of others.

When we ourselves are always negative about others, we cannot be shocked when others are negative about us. What goes around comes around.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Book Review: Christian Encounters, Isaac Newton by Mitch Stokes

As an inventor, astronomer, physicist, and philosopher, Isaac Newton forever changed the way we see and understand the world. At one point, he was the world's leading authority in mathematics, optics, and alchemy. And surprisingly he wrote more about faith and religion than on all of these subjects combined....Newton saw the scientific world not as a way to refute theology but as a way to explain it.

This was another good little book in the series: Christian Encounters. The life of Isaac Newton is a fascinating one to me. He is so different than most of the modern scientist today, yet he is so influential in what they do. While most of academia does all that it can to eliminate God, Newton embraced God and faith. While, I do not agree with all of Newton's Theology, nevertheless, he is an important figure in history to study. His life shows how far science has fallen today, and author Mitch Stokes does a good job showing us this truth through the life of Isaac Newton.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Book Review: Cornerstone Biblical Commentary on 1-2 Chronicles

This was the first commentary that I have come across from the series, Cornerstone Biblical Commentary, and it was a commentary that I found helpful and useful. The book I was given covered 1-2 Chronicles. There is a wealth of information packed into this commentary. It gives excellent background information on the books, human authors, major themes, who it was written to, and then individual verse comments. But, because of all of the information that is given, it becomes a little "cluttered" at first glance and is a little difficult to navigate. But, once you get used to it, you can find the information quickly that you are looking for. The only personal drawback I have of the book is that it is based of the New Living Translation. But, just have out your King James Bible as you read it and you will come across a wealth of information as you prepare messages, or just want to dig a little deeper for your own personal knowledge.

Tyndale House Publishers has provided me with a complimentary copy of this book.