Seize the Moment – Day 821

 

Something Greater Than Solomon!

1 Kings 10

 

Good morning! This is Pastor Jerry Ingalls from New Castle First Baptist Church and today is Thursday, June 16.

 

Have you ever had a chance to meet a powerful or famous person? Did that person live up to your expectations?

 

King Solomon received many important visitors, and one of the most famous was the Queen of Sheba. After spending time with Solomon and inspecting every aspect of his kingship, she concluded in 1 Kings 10:6-7, “It was a true report which I heard in my own land about your words and your wisdom. Nevertheless I did not believe the reports, until I came and my eyes had seen it. And behold, the half was not told me. You exceed in wisdom and prosperity the report which I heard.

 

As a point of comparison, Jesus referenced this story in Matthew 12:42, “The Queen of the South will rise up with this generation at the judgment and will condemn it, because she came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon; and behold, something greater than Solomon is here.

 

To further illustrate this contrast, 1 Kings 10:23-24 explains of Solomon’s power and fame, “So King Solomon became greater than all the kings of the earth in riches and in wisdom. All the earth was seeking the presence of Solomon, to hear his wisdom which God had put in his heart.

 

What can possibly be greater than the greatest king on Earth?It is the Kingdom of God, the sovereign rule of God over all creation, Heaven and Earth, through the rightful kingship of the King of Kings, God’s only begotten Son, Jesus Christ. Jesus declared that He was ushering in “something greater,” and that was His wisdom, His riches, and His rule, which far exceed all who had ever come before Him, including King Solomon. Jesus has put all things in subjection under His feet (1 Corinthians 15:23-28).

Seize the moment and put your faith in King Jesus because He will never fall short of the power and fame ascribed to Him.
 
God bless you!
 
If you wo’uld like to receive a personal phone call today, all you have to do is dial the phone number below right now and one of us will call you soon.
 

YOUTUBE:

If you prefer a video, Pastor Jerry reads his devotion on YouTube as well. Click HERE to visit the page.
Videos are posted about a week after the devotion appears in the blog.

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Seize the Moment – Day 820

The Score at Halftime!

1 Kings 9

 

Good morning! This is Pastor Jerry Ingalls from New Castle First Baptist Church and today is Wednesday, June 15.

 

What is the least important statistic in sports? The score at half-time!

 

Fast forward 20 years and King Solomon’s building projectswere finished (1 Kings 9:10). As we get this glimpse of Solomon’s kingship, at the halfway point of his 40-year reign, we see that he has been blessed by God and was prospering in every way. Unfortunately, there were also strong indicators of his eventual defeat if he didn’t shore up his weak areas. God, like a good coach who challenges his players to play like champions in the second half of the game during the half-time locker room talk, confronted Solomon in 1 Kings 9:6-9:

 

But if you or your sons indeed turn away from following Me, and do not keep My commandments and My statutes which I have set before you, and go and serve other gods and worship them, then I will cut off Israel from the land which I have given them, and the house which I have consecrated for My name, I will cast out of My sight. So Israel will become a proverb and a byword among all peoples. And this house will become a heap of ruins; everyone who passes by will be astonished and hiss and say, Why has the Lord done thus to this land and to this house? And they will say, Because they forsook the Lord their God, who brought their fathers out of the land of Egypt, and adopted other gods and worshiped them and served them, therefore the Lord has brought all this adversity on them.”

 

Solomon did not heed the Coach’s wisdom and all of God’s warnings were fulfilled in the destruction of Jerusalem in Jeremiah 52. Regardless of the score at half-time in your life or ministry, live like a champion today, all the way to finish line (1 Corinthians 9:24-27).

 

Seize the moment and finish strong, persevere until the end(Matthew 24:13).

 

God bless you!
 
If you wo’uld like to receive a personal phone call today, all you have to do is dial the phone number below right now and one of us will call you soon.
 

YOUTUBE:

If you prefer a video, Pastor Jerry reads his devotion on YouTube as well. Click HERE to visit the page.
Videos are posted about a week after the devotion appears in the blog.

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Seize the Moment – Day 819

Blessed to be a Blessing!

1 Kings 8

 

Good morning! This is Pastor Jerry Ingalls from New Castle First Baptist Church and today is Tuesday, June 14. 

 

The word blessed has become common place in our culture recently. There is nothing wrong with using it if you know that God’s blessings always come with a stewardship responsibilitya charge from God to be a blessing!

 

There was a big celebration in Jerusalem, and throughout Israel, as the ark of God was relocated to the temple. As it was placed inside the most holy place, the cloud, the glory of God, filled the house of the Lord (1 Kings 8:1-11). God was with them! King Solomon spoke (12-21), gave a prayer of dedication (22-54), and then in verses 56-61, he blessed the people:

 

Blessed be the Lord, who has given rest to His people Israel, according to all that He promised; not one word has failed of all His good promise, which He promised through Moses His servant. May the Lord our God be with us, as He was with our fathers; may He not leave us or forsake us, that He may incline our hearts to Himself, to walk in all His ways and to keep His commandments and His statutes and His ordinances, which He commanded our fathers. And may these words of mine, with which I have made supplication before the Lord, be near to the Lord our God day and night, that He may maintain the cause of His servant and the cause of His people Israel, as each day requires, so that all the peoples of the earth may know that the Lord is God; there is no one else. Let your heart therefore be wholly devoted to the Lord our God, to walk in His statutes and to keep His commandments, as at this day.

 

Solomon’s blessing was filled with gratitude and faith, yet it also charged the people to live for God wholeheartedlyaccording to His commandments, and to bless the nations for His glory.

 

Seize the moment and walk in God’s blessing by living out God’s charge upon your life – you have been blessed to a blessing!

God bless you!
 
If you wo’uld like to receive a personal phone call today, all you have to do is dial the phone number below right now and one of us will call you soon.
 

YOUTUBE:

If you prefer a video, Pastor Jerry reads his devotion on YouTube as well. Click HERE to visit the page.
Videos are posted about a week after the devotion appears in the blog.

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Seize the Moment – Day 818

Acquire Wisdom and Get Understanding!

1 Kings 7

 

Good morning! This is Pastor Jerry Ingalls from New Castle First Baptist Church and today is Monday, June 13.

 

While it is important to be a competent and capable person, your character is of the greatest importance.

 

The construction of the temple was complete, and it was time for the intricate details to be crafted. Accordingly, in 1 Kings 7:13-14, King Solomon called upon the best artisan, a skilledworker who was filled with wisdom and understanding, “Now King Solomon sent and brought Hiram from Tyre. He was a widow’s son from the tribe of Naphtali, and his father was a man of Tyre, a worker in bronze; and he was filled with wisdom and understanding and skill for doing any work in bronze.

 

This passage is reminiscent of God’s words to Moses, during the building of the tabernacle, in Exodus 31:1-3: 

 

“See, I have called by name Bezalel, the son of Uri, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah. I have filled him with the Spirit of God in wisdom, in understanding, in knowledge, and in all kinds of craftsmanship.”

 

When God chooses a person for an important job, it is not only for their competency, but also for their character. The skilled artisans, who were selected by Solomon and Moses, were people of wisdom and understanding. This pairing of “wisdom and understanding” in the Bible is used to describe the quality of a person’s spiritual maturity – they feared God and listened for His instructions. Isaiah 11:2a details this truth in a messianic prophecy, “The Spirit of the Lord will rest on Him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding.”

 

God desires for His people to be empowered by His Spirit in all their work, and to not lean upon their own understanding, no matter how educated or trained. It is good to further your education and pursue your training, but don’t neglect the fear of the Lord!

 

Seize the moment and “acquire wisdom; and with all your acquiring, get understanding” (Proverbs 9:10).

God bless you!
 
If you wo’uld like to receive a personal phone call today, all you have to do is dial the phone number below right now and one of us will call you soon.
 

YOUTUBE:

If you prefer a video, Pastor Jerry reads his devotion on YouTube as well. Click HERE to visit the page.
Videos are posted about a week after the devotion appears in the blog.
 

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Seize the Moment – Day 816

Today’s hymn focus will be

Rock of Ages

Psalm 18:2 (NLT)               

 

The Lord is my rock, my fortress, and my savior; my God is my rock, in whom I find protection.

He is my shield, the power that saves me, and my place of safety.

 

Augustus Toplady first published this hymn in 1775 in an article entitled “Life a Journey”, stating: “if you fall, be humbled and do not despair. Pray afresh to God who is able to raise you up, and set you on your feet again.” He wanted people to realize that no matter how big the debt of our sin account, it is only the blood of Jesus that could pay that debt in full.  He rejoiced in the fact that Jesus is our place of safety and the rock to which we can anchor the ship of our life.

 

            Rock of Ages, cleft for me, let me hide myself in Thee,

            Let the water and the blood, from Thy wounded side which flowed

            Be of sin the double cure, save from wrath and make me pure.

 

We need to wake up and realize the truth of this ancient hymn that reminds us there is no one like our God. He is our Rock, our Hope and our Salvation. When in doubt, sing this song to remind your heart and mind Who our Rock is!

If you would like to receive a personal phone call today, all you have to do is dial the phone number below right now and one of us will call you soon.
 

YOUTUBE:

If you prefer a video, Pastor Ken reads his devotion on YouTube as well. Click HERE to visit the page.
Videos are posted about a week after the devotion appears in the blog.
 
If you’d like to hear the song, click on the link below:
 
1
Rock of Ages, cleft for me,
let me hide myself in thee;
let the water and the blood,
from thy wounded side which flowed,
be of sin the double cure;
save from wrath and make me pure.
 
2
Not the labors of my hands
can fulfill thy law’s demands;
could my zeal no respite know,
could my tears forever flow,
all for sin could not atone;
thou must save, and thou alone.
 
3
Nothing in my hand I bring,
simply to the cross I cling;
naked, come to thee for dress;
helpless, look to thee for grace;
foul, I to the fountain fly;
wash me, Savior, or I die.
 
4
While I draw this fleeting breath,
when mine eyes shall close in death,
when I soar to worlds unknown,
see thee on thy judgment throne,
Rock of Ages, cleft for me,
let me hide myself in thee.
 
 
 
 

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Seize the Moment – Day 815

 

The Heart of Worship!

1 Kings 6

 

Good morning! This is Pastor Jerry Ingalls from New Castle First Baptist Church and today is Friday, June 10. 

 

Why do we gather as the church? What is the heart of worship? Is it about a building, or a service with songs and a sermon, or is worship something more than all of these?

 

The detailed description of Solomon’s temple has two distinct parts in 1 Kings 6. Verses 2-10 describe the exterior and verses 14-38 describe the interior. While most of this chapter is focused on the details of the construction of the temple, the heart of the temple project is found in 1 Kings 6:11-13:

 

Now the word of the Lord came to Solomon saying, “Concerning this house which you are building, if you will walk in My statutes and execute My ordinances and keep all My commandments by walking in them, then I will carry out My word with you which I spoke to David your father. I will dwell among the sons of Israel, and will not forsake My people Israel.”

 

Obviously, the temple was an important place, but it should not be surprising that God would remind His people that at the heart of its construction, and its future usage, was the life of obedience to His commandments. God taught the heart of worship previously in 1 Samuel 15:22-23a, “Has the Lord as much delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as in obeying the voice of the Lord? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed than the fat of rams. For rebellion is as the sin of divination, and insubordination is as iniquity and idolatry.

 

While building projects, event planning, song selections, and sermon writing are important parts of how we practice our faith in contemporary Christianity, let us never forget that the heart of worship has always been, and will always be, obedience to God and His ways. We are the temple of His presence on the Earth (1 Corinthians 6:19-20).

 

Seize the moment and worship God by obeying His Word.
 
God bless you!
 
If you would like to receive a personal phone call today, all you have to do is dial the phone number below right now and one of us will call you soon.
 

YOUTUBE:

If you prefer a video, Pastor Jerry reads his devotion on YouTube as well. Click HERE to visit the page.
Videos are posted about a week after the devotion appears in the blog.
 

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Seize the Moment – Day 814

 

The Heavy Burden of Forced Labor!

1 Kings 5

 

Good morning! This is Pastor Jerry Ingalls from New Castle First Baptist Church and today is Thursday, June 9.

 

Have you ever been forced to do a job you didn’t like or want to do? Imagine being conscripted by the President to be a forced laborer for a grand national project in Washington DC.

 

First Kings 5:13-16 explained how Solomon conscripted 183,300 workers to do the hard labor of building the temple:

 

Now King Solomon levied forced laborers from all Israel; and the forced laborers numbered 30,000 men. He sent them to Lebanon, 10,000 a month in relays; they were in Lebanon a month and two months at home. And Adoniram was over the forced laborers. Now Solomon had 70,000 transporters, and 80,000 hewers of stone in the mountains, besides Solomon’s 3,300 chief deputies who were over the project and who ruled over the people who were doing the work.

 

These men quarried and cut the stones for the foundation of the temple, as well as transported and prepared the necessary timber for this grand national project in Jerusalem. Unstated in this account are the countless farmers, laborers, and servants who would support this undertaking and provide for the terms of the purchase agreement with Hiram, the king of Tyre (1-12).

 

We read through all this way too quickly! We remain deaf and blind to the suffering of the people living under the heavy burden of Solomon’s aggressive agenda. In 1 Kings 12:4, after forty years of Solomon’s rule, the people petition Solomon’s son Rehoboam, “Your father made our yoke hard; now therefore lighten the hard service of your father and his heavy yoke which he put on us, and we will serve you.” When he refused, the people rebelled (1 Kings 12:13-19). People can only take the heavy burden of forced labor for so long!

 

Seize the moment and find rest for your soul from the oppressive regime of sin by breaking the world’s heavy yoke and getting in the easy yoke of Jesus, His burden is light (Matthew 11:28-30).

God bless you!
 
If you would like to receive a personal phone call today, all you have to do is dial the phone number below right now and one of us will call you soon.
 

YOUTUBE:

If you prefer a video, Pastor Jerry reads his devotion on YouTube as well. Click HERE to visit the page.
Videos are posted about a week after the devotion appears in the blog.

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Seize the Moment – Day 813

 

God Keeps His Promises!

1 Kings 4

 

Good morning! This is Pastor Jerry Ingalls from New Castle First Baptist Church and today is Wednesday, June 8.

 

Are you waiting on God to fulfill a promise?

 

King Solomon’s reign was unique in the history of Israel. It was a time of rest for the nation as they experienced  the fulfillment of God’s promise to Abraham, according to 1 Kings 4:20-21, and 25:

 

Judah and Israel were as numerous as the sand that is on the seashore in abundance; they were eating and drinking and rejoicing. Now Solomon ruled over all the kingdoms from the River to the land of the Philistines and to the border of Egypt; they brought tribute and served Solomon all the days of his life. … So Judah and Israel lived in safety, every man under his vine and his fig tree, from Dan even to Beersheba, all the days of Solomon.

 

You may recognize the phrase “as numerous as the sand that is on the seashore” because it was a promise of God given to Abraham in Genesis 22:17, “indeed I will greatly bless you, and I will greatly multiply your seed as the stars of the heavens and as the sand which is on the seashore; and your seed shall possess the gate of their enemies.” God later reiterated this promise to Israel (Jacob) in Genesis 32:12.

 

God yoked the promise of abundance and the promise of rest with the giving of the Promised Land, which He covenanted to give to Abraham in Genesis 15:18. That was later affirmed by Moses to the twelve tribes of Israel in Deuteronomy 12:10, “He gives you rest from all your enemies around you so that you live in security.”

 

Just as God’s promises of abundance and rest were fulfilled in the days of Solomon, so they are today in Christ Jesus (John 10:10; Matthew 11:28-30; 2 Corinthians 1:20).

 

Seize the moment and wait upon the Lord with faith, hope, and love; God never fails to keep His promises!

God bless you!
 
If you would like to receive a personal phone call today, all you have to do is dial the phone number below right now and one of us will call you soon.
 

YOUTUBE:

If you prefer a video, Pastor Jerry reads his devotion on YouTube as well. Click HERE to visit the page.
Videos are posted about a week after the devotion appears in the blog.

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Seize the Moment – Day 812

 

The Opportunity of a Lifetime!

1 Kings 3

 

Good morning! This is Pastor Jerry Ingalls from New Castle First Baptist Church and today is Tuesday, June 7.

 

If God gave you the opportunity to ask for anything you want, what would you ask for? Before you give a flippant response to this question, take time to think deeply upon this opportunity of a lifetime. Your answer reveals your heart and determines the way in which you will walk.

 

Solomon is the new king of Israel, and, in his great wealth, he offered a large sacrifice to God, after which the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Ask what you wish me to give you” (1 Kings 3:5). Solomon’s response, in 1 Kings 3:9, pleased God: “Give Your servant an understanding heart to judge Your people to discern between good and evil. For who is able to judge this great people of Yours?”

 

A thousand years later, in Mark 10:51-52, a blind beggar was crying out to Jesus from the side of the road when Jesus responded, “‘What do you want Me to do for you?’ And the blind man said to Him, ‘Rabboni, I want to regain my sight!’ And Jesus said to him, ‘Go; your faith has made you well.’ Immediately he regained his sight and began following Him on the road.”

 

Two men, one a rich ruler and the other a poor beggar, are given the opportunity of a lifetime. The first received the ability to hear with his heart and the second the ability to see with his eyes. Both, in response, are invited to follow in the way to demonstrate that they have received the true gift – a relationship with the Gift-Giver. Today, God is offering you the same opportunity of a lifetime.

 

Seize the moment and “Delight yourself in the Lord; and He will give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the Lord, trust also in Him, and He will do it” (Psalm 37:4-5).

God bless you!
 
If you would like to receive a personal phone call today, all you have to do is dial the phone number below right now and one of us will call you soon.
 

YOUTUBE:

If you prefer a video, Pastor Jerry reads his devotion on YouTube as well. Click HERE to visit the page.
Videos are posted about a week after the devotion appears in the blog.

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Seize the Moment – Day 811

 

Deal with the Enemy Within!

1 Kings 2

 

Good morning! This is Pastor Jerry Ingalls from New Castle First Baptist Church and today is Monday, June 6.

 

Have you ever felt like the greatest threat to your own happiness and well-being was not from the outside, but from the enemy within?

 

In his final charge to Solomon, King David commanded the new king, to deal with the enemies within his own gates; he started with these instructions recorded in 1 Kings 2:2-4:

 

I am going the way of all the earth. Be strong, therefore, and show yourself a man. Keep the charge of the Lord your God, to walk in His ways, to keep His statutes, His commandments, His ordinances, and His testimonies, according to what is written in the Law of Moses, that you may succeed in all that you do and wherever you turn, so that the Lord may carry out His promise which He spoke concerning me, saying, “If your sons are careful of their way, to walk before Me in truth with all their heart and with all their soul, you shall not lack a man on the throne of Israel.”

 

Wisely, David gave Solomon God’s instructions for a king from Deuteronomy 17:18-20 and passed on to his son God’s covenantal promise from 2 Samuel 7:12-16. David believed the greatest threat to Solomon would be the enemies within the gate, including Joab and Shimei (1 Kings 2:5-9).

 

By the end of this chapter, it looked as if the enemies within the gate had been dealt with successfully. Except for one! Solomon seemingly didn’t deal with the worst of the enemies within the gate that David warned him of – himself! As we will see in the very next chapter, Solomon sowed the seeds of his own failure, not from a lack of wisdom, but from a lack of submission to God’s ways in the most intimate places of his life (Deuteronomy 17:17; 1 Kings 11:1-6).

 

Seize the moment and “watch over your heart with all diligence, for from it flow the springs of life” (Proverbs 4:23; Mark 7:15; Galatians 5:16-21; Romans 7:21-23).

God bless you!
 
If you would like to receive a personal phone call today, all you have to do is dial the phone number below right now and one of us will call you soon.
 

YOUTUBE:

If you prefer a video, Pastor Jerry reads his devotion on YouTube as well. Click HERE to visit the page.
Videos are posted about a week after the devotion appears in the blog.

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