Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Dial Daily Bread

Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread":

Meet Mr. Bezaleel, someone you probably don’t remember. He stands as one of the worthy members of the cast of heroes in the Bible story, but he gets neglected. He didn’t kill a Goliath as David did or tame lions in their den as Daniel did, but he was as blessed as they were with a special gift of the Holy Spirit that needs recognition today.

Mr. Bezaleel was gifted by the Holy Spirit in ways that we don’t normally recognize as His gifts: he gets a significant write-up in the Bible with his genealogy as a craftsman working in gold, silver, bronze, wood-carving and the like. But he is designated as being “filled with the Spirit of God” (Ex. 35:30-36:2). We have been na├»ve in assuming that the Holy Spirit blesses only (or mainly) with spiritual knowledge—that it’s on a higher plane of living. “Every wise hearted man in whose heart the LORD hath put wisdom” is on the same level (36:2).

Mr. Bezaleel can be the patron saint of all who have developed a special intricate expertise in a profession that is a blessing to life on planet earth, the “knowledge [that] shall be increased” promised to Daniel (12:4).

So, the gentleman who takes my crumpled Passat and makes it look new again (in Nairobi we call such, “panel beaters”), who has given him that skill? Exodus 35, 36 says, “the Holy Spirit.”

The physician spends long years memorizing all the little bones and nerves in your body, studying how diseases work, that he might be a blessing to you; the Holy Spirit gives him that skill. The rich man is not to “glory in his riches” (Jer. 9:23), neither is the physician to glory in his skill, but that he “understands and knows Me,” says the Lord, that I am “love” manifested in constant “lovingkindness.” Thank God when you are healed; it was really “the Great Physician” working through His servant (who may not even know who he is).

Be sure to check your e-mail for "Dial Daily Bread" again tomorrow.

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Robert J. Wieland's inspirational "Dial Daily Bread" phone message is available via e-mail to anyone who wishes to receive a daily portion of uplifting Good News. "Dial Daily Bread" is FREE. Due to travel or other circumstances, there may be intervals when "Dial Daily Bread" will not be sent.

Monday, July 30, 2007

Dial Daily Bread

Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread":

All this talk about “old/new covenant” may be perplexing to someone who honestly wonders what it’s all about, what’s the difference. We could apologize for bringing it up, but then we can’t—it’s in the Bible almost everywhere.

Nicodemus comes to Jesus “by night” (old covenant people love the dark) with some old covenant flattery (“we know You are a teacher come from God”) and gets a stark new covenant response: “The son of man must be lifted up so that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life” (John 3:1-15).

The fear-laden jailer in Philippi asks an old covenant question, “What MUST I DO to be saved?” and gets a new covenant answer: “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you shall be saved” (Acts 16:30, 31). (No obeying the law? “Believe” and there will be no end to your law-obedience.)

The 23rd psalm is probably the most new-covenantish chapter in the entire Bible (forgive me for coining a word!). Nothing about “the law”? Not a word about “doing” anything except following where the Good Shepherd “leads”? The old covenanter (again, forgive me!) would probably re-write it, “The Lord is my Dog who DRIVES me home” ( no, that’s not the idea). The Shepherd psalm is the “Come unto Me and I will give you rest” idea (cf. Matt. 11:28-30).

The LORD who is your Shepherd is the special name for the “our Father which art in heaven” who loves to hear us cry, “Abba, Father!” when we are in distress (Matt. 6:9, KJV; Rom. 8:15, 16). The very fact that your perplexed heart cries out those words is proof that He has “adopted” you into the family of God (a 23rd psalm idea). Read Romans 8 carefully, to see who you are.

The new covenant truth: you are not a “wolf” to be shot down; you are a “lamb” (a prodigal son) who has gone astray. That same LORD is the “father” who welcomes the prodigal home and puts the best robe on him (Luke 15:22). Flee where you wish but you can’t escape that new covenant love that pursues you (Psalm 139:9-12).

Be sure to check your e-mail for "Dial Daily Bread" again tomorrow.

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Robert J. Wieland's inspirational "Dial Daily Bread" phone message is available via e-mail to anyone who wishes to receive a daily portion of uplifting Good News. "Dial Daily Bread" is FREE. Due to travel or other circumstances, there may be intervals when "Dial Daily Bread" will not be sent.

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Dial Daily Bread

Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread":

You are praying for someone, a loved one; your heart is drawn out for that person. It’s the real thing, for you find yourself willing to be “accursed from Christ” for the sake of that person (cf. Rom. 9:1). That’s the genuine article that the Bible says is agape.

Moses had that kind of love, for he begged the Lord to remove his name from the Book of Life if He could not save rebellious Israel (Ex. 32:31-33).

The very intensity of your agape praying for your loved one is evidence that the Lord hears your prayers; He will not deceive you! And now you have something in common with the Lord Jesus, for He loves that person more than you have ever loved him/her. Now you two are working together!

Very likely your beloved has somewhere become alienated from “the commonwealth of Israel” (Eph. 2:12) because he/she has been inoculated with the virus of the old covenant, possibly in a “Christian” school or church. The “old covenant” “genders to bondage” (Gal. 4:24). There are probably millions around the world in various stages of spiritual bondage because of the machinations of old covenant thinking.

But do not give in to despair; you may be part (or a great deal) of the problem and not realize it, but now that you realize you have something in common with the Lord Jesus, you are on the way to recovery. If the agape of Christ leads you to experience the love that the apostle Paul or Moses had for Israel, that means that you have begun (maybe only begun!) to sense that the great controversy between Christ and Satan is an issue of greater importance than your own personal salvation. You are “growing up into Christ” (Eph. 4:15). Now your supreme concern is not (a) your own salvation, but (b) the salvation of someone else, and (c) the honor, the vindication, the reward that the Lord Jesus deserves for His great sacrifice of dying the world’s second death (Rev. 20:14). “Big idea”!

Be sure to check your e-mail for "Dial Daily Bread" again tomorrow.

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Robert J. Wieland's inspirational "Dial Daily Bread" phone message is available via e-mail to anyone who wishes to receive a daily portion of uplifting Good News. "Dial Daily Bread" is FREE. Due to travel or other circumstances, there may be intervals when "Dial Daily Bread" will not be sent.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Dial Daily Bread

Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread":

The Lord loves to “turn the captivity” of people who have suffered, and bring them out of the painful shadows of rejection into the bright sunlight of His favor.

Take Joseph for example. We think of the text that says “Rejoice O young man in thy youth and let thy heart cheer thee in the days of thy youth” (Eccl. 11:9, KJV). Boys should be full of fun. But Joseph at the age of 17 or maybe 18 is crying his eyes out one night in an agony worse almost than death—he has just been sold as a slave to some hard-hearted Midianites. A life of torture is before him, when he had thought that God’s favor was on him.

And those who sold him? His fellow church-members, his ten brothers in the faith. No, they are more than that—they are the church leadership of his day, for they were all older than he, the heirs of the glorious promises God made to Abraham’s descendants. Condemned to Egyptian slavery, Joseph appears to be God-forsaken, and he feels like it except for the little glimmer of faith he has.

His slavery goes from bad to worse and he ends up in a dark Egyptian prison. At least 12 or 13 years of this “chastisement” discipline go on; the Lord must have loved him enormously, for “whom the Lord loves He chastens and scourges every son whom He receives” (Heb. 12:5-9).

The Lord gave Joseph a little sunlight when he was made prime minister of the realm of Egypt and he realized that his painful suffering had prepared him to become the famine “savior” of the Middle East civilization of his day.

But still the years of soul captivity dragged on; his constant temptation was to think that the prophetic dreams of his boyhood were a deception; no one can suffer a deep, private pain more agonizing than the fear that the Lord truly has betrayed your trust. You can’t talk to anyone about it. Not until his ten brothers come and kneel before him in fulfillment of his prophetic childhood dream is Joseph finally led out into the bright sunshine of the heavenly Father’s vindication.

There are little Josephs all over the world today, people whose faith is tried to the utmost (it seems to them) when everything seems to shout at them that God has forgotten them. In some cases as in the life of the prophet Jeremiah, the pain goes on and on until death is the final release from it (then the Jews realized that he had been the prince of prophets).

If you must look through tears, remember that “God is love”—your “abba, Father” (Rom. 8:15-17) who has adopted you into His family. Remembering brings joy.

Be sure to check your e-mail for "Dial Daily Bread" again tomorrow.

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Robert J. Wieland's inspirational "Dial Daily Bread" phone message is available via e-mail to anyone who wishes to receive a daily portion of uplifting Good News. "Dial Daily Bread" is FREE. Due to travel or other circumstances, there may be intervals when "Dial Daily Bread" will not be sent.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Dial Daily Bread

Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread":

Some day, somewhere, someone, will understand the “everlasting gospel” of Jesus Christ so clearly that “another angel” will come down from heaven “having great power” and will “lighten the earth” with the glory of that full-orbed truth. Multitudes who now sit in darkness will see a great light and will come to it (Rev. 18:1-4; Matt. 4:16).

And it won’t be only “some one” who understands; there will be many who are in heartfelt union, around the world, of “every nation, tribe, tongue, and people” (14:6). No more theological squabbles! That unity will be as much a miracle as the insight of that “some one” who will see crystal clear what the gospel is with no contradicting confusion. That unity will be in fulfillment of the prayer of Jesus in John 17, “I do not pray for these alone, but also for those who will believe in Me through their word, that they all may be one, as You, Father, are in Me, and I [am] in You; that they also may be one in Us, that the world may believe that You sent Me” (vss. 20, 21). “The world” will not believe until they see that “one-ness.”

Those who will understand the gospel and be in union will receive “the seal of God in their foreheads” (Rev. 7:1-4), obviously a symbol of a heart understanding of truth that has also gripped the understanding of the mind; they will have pondered and studied; they will believe Jesus’ promise, “You will know the truth and the truth will make you free”(John 8:32).

They will graduate out of old covenant living into the bright sunlight of the new. The old covenant will no longer produce “bondage” in them, but they will “stand fast in the liberty wherewith Christ has made us free” (Gal. 5:6). They will overcome where ancient Israel stumbled and fell. Instead of “crucifying Christ afresh and bringing Him to an open shame” (Heb. 6:6), they will surrender self to be “crucified with Him” (Gal. 2:20).

As soon as they receive “the seal of God” and “follow the Lamb” [the crucified and risen “Savior of the world]” the enemy will launch against them his “mark of the beast” attempt to frighten them into submission (Rev. 13:16, 17); but “perfect love” [agape] has at last “cast out fear (1 John 4:18) and they are seated with Christ on His throne to bring to a triumphant close “the great controversy” with Satan (Rev. 3:21).

But must this glorious triumph of the gospel await a future generation? Are there some out there who long to see the victory come now?

Be sure to check your e-mail for "Dial Daily Bread" again tomorrow.

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Robert J. Wieland's inspirational "Dial Daily Bread" phone message is available via e-mail to anyone who wishes to receive a daily portion of uplifting Good News. "Dial Daily Bread" is FREE. Due to travel or other circumstances, there may be intervals when "Dial Daily Bread" will not be sent.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Dial Daily Bread

Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread":

When the Holy Spirit outpouring of the latter rain comes, will it sweep like a tidal wave throughout the church? Let history speak and tell us something:

An example is the birth of Jesus. The coming of Jesus of Nazareth did not do that for the scribes and Pharisees in Jerusalem. The great Messiah, the “Desire of all nations,” anticipated throughout the world, came in that humble birth of a Baby in a cowshed.

A handful of “wise men from the East” responded to the call of the Holy Spirit; in Jerusalem here was Anna, a very old woman, who came to see Him (Luke 2:32), and there was old Simeon who was ecstatic with joy at His birth (vss. 25ff.); but beyond them, no one that gets a mention in the Bible.

Apparently the lesson is clear: when the latter rain comes, no one will get a morsel of bread except the hungry ones who are famished for it, and no one will get a drink of water except the desperately thirsty ones. The latter rain may be falling in copious showers of grace all around us and we slip through the grand experience untouched, only to embrace a counterfeit cleverly done up by the “father of lies.” And then we would collide with the “mark of the beast” test—unprepared.

Some fearing and trembling is appropriate now.

“The high and lofty One who inhabits eternity” is wide awake and is responding to prayers that are arising here and there throughout the world. He “dwells in the high and holy place” but “also [only] with him who is of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones” (Isa. 57:15). He pays special attention to the prayers of “him who ... trembles at My word,” He says (66:2).

All around the world He is doing that today. Things are happening, beneath the surface.

Are you within His little circle?

Be sure to check your e-mail for "Dial Daily Bread" again tomorrow.

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Robert J. Wieland's inspirational "Dial Daily Bread" phone message is available via e-mail to anyone who wishes to receive a daily portion of uplifting Good News. "Dial Daily Bread" is FREE. Due to travel or other circumstances, there may be intervals when "Dial Daily Bread" will not be sent.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Dial Daily Bread

Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread":

The last page of the Bible invites us to come if we are thirsty, and “take the water of life freely” (Rev. 22:17). And Jesus says, “Come to Me” if we’re weary and heavy-laden, and He will give us “rest” (Matt. 11:28-30). So, we “come” and we are baptized, and we become members of the church. We are so happy at last to find fellowship in the Lord, heaven on earth.

And we continue to “read the Bible, and pray, and witness” like we’re always told to do. And we believe the Bible and say so, but then opposition and controversy arise. We’re tempted to wish that we had kept still. So, we are driven to our knees to pray, and we ask the Lord, “Why is this happening? I wanted peace, and now this ‘war’ has come!”

The Lord has indeed promised, “the one who comes to Me I will by no means cast out”! (John 6:37). As you wait quietly before Him in prayer, He answers your questions faithfully:

(a) If you keep your eyes on Jesus you will see a Man who was cruelly crucified because He told the truth. And He tells us all, “I did not come to bring peace but a sword” (Matt. 10:34). Deny self, take up your cross daily (Luke 9:23). But wait a moment—you never fight a battle alone! This is what you must believe.

(b) He faithfully promises, “‘I will never leave you nor forsake you.’ So we may boldly say, ‘The Lord is my helper; I will not fear. What can man do to me?’” (Heb. 13:5, 6). You choose not to be afraid, in the Lord. Then ... you’re not afraid.

(c) Even in the church, the Lord’s house, where we expect to find heaven on earth, we find conflict and even persecution. That’s where the most severe and painful conflicts come! But the Lord still assures you, He won’t forsake you.

(d) He loves the church for it is yet to become the Bride of Christ; and it does indeed have very severe problems within it, for Jesus tells the leadership of the church today that of all the “seven churches” of world history, you are the one outstandingly “miserable, poor, blind, and naked” (the little Greek word “ho” is there, the one; Rev. 3:17).

(e) Therefore do not give up on the church, the body of Christ, His Bride-to-be. The final victory in the “great controversy between Christ and Satan” comes at the very end and it requires that the church finally “overcome” and do what He says in Rev. 3:19—repent . It won’t at last be fear that motivates her, but a deeper appreciation of what it cost Him to save us. That melted-hearted repentance will come, it has to come; hang on!

Be sure to check your e-mail for "Dial Daily Bread" again tomorrow.

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Robert J. Wieland's inspirational "Dial Daily Bread" phone message is available via e-mail to anyone who wishes to receive a daily portion of uplifting Good News. "Dial Daily Bread" is FREE. Due to travel or other circumstances, there may be intervals when "Dial Daily Bread" will not be sent.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Dial Daily Bread

Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread":

If there is anyone out there in the world who feels unworthy of God’s goodness, let him think of the thief on the cross (the eventually believing one):

(1) His body is inert; all he has left are the functions of his eyes, his ears, his voice; so he can’t “do” any good works to merit God’s goodness. If he is saved at last, it must be totally “by grace.” The same with us.

(2) He sins even while he is crucified on his cross, for we read that he “reviled” the sinless Savior, the Son of God (Mark 15:32). He joined the unbelieving scribes and Pharisees and the rabble in ridiculing “the Son of God,” challenging Jesus to prove that He is the Son of God by coming down from the cross. He joined his fellow thief in this bitterness, and “cast the same in His teeth,” a vivid expression of his contempt (Matt. 27:44, KJV): “Let the Christ, the King of Israel, descend now from the cross, that we may see and believe,” they mock; and our thief is joining in heaping this bitter ridicule on Jesus (Mark 15:32). If anybody on earth proves himself unworthy of salvation, it must be this man!

(3) Jesus utters no word to rebuke him (or them).

(4) But then something happens: our thief does what Jesus didn’t do—he rebukes his fellow thief, “Do you not even fear God, seeing you are under the same condemnation?”(Luke 23:40).

(5) Then our thief confesses his unworthiness: “And we indeed justly; for we receive the due reward of our deeds” (Luke 23:41). Note: he takes a giant leap forward, by faith. He does the same thing that Paul later did by faith when he said, “I am crucified with Christ” (Gal. 2:20). He climbs up by faith to share the place of those who at last “overcome even as [Christ] overcame” to “sit with [Him] on [His] throne” (Rev. 3:21). Some of us have spent a lifetime learning how self can be “crucified with Christ,” and here this man has gotten there in a few minutes! (That should encourage us to believe that when the loud cry of Revelation 18 goes out to lighten the earth with glory, people will respond quickly and overcome.)

(6) Our thief confesses the sinlessness of Jesus: “this Man has done nothing wrong.”

(7) He prays to be saved from hell: “Lord, remember me when You come into Your kingdom” (Luke 23:42). Then he hears words that many a worldly billionaire would give anything to hear: “You will be with Me in paradise.”

Take heart, burdened soul; there is no higher place than that of this thief, or greater reward. Let’s join him where he is.

Be sure to check your e-mail for "Dial Daily Bread" again tomorrow.

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Robert J. Wieland's inspirational "Dial Daily Bread" phone message is available via e-mail to anyone who wishes to receive a daily portion of uplifting Good News. "Dial Daily Bread" is FREE. Due to travel or other circumstances, there may be intervals when "Dial Daily Bread" will not be sent.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Dial Daily Bread

Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread":

For people who loved the Bible, life in the early 1800s became exciting. Not one but many in different places had become convinced that the books of Daniel and Revelation contained vital truth, and the seal that had closed the book of Daniel for millennia (12:4) was now open! Highly respected scholars such as Sir Isaac Newton had discovered that in Bible prophecy a day is a symbol of a year. As a bleak wintry landscape comes to thrilling life with the awakening of spring, so serious minded youth in many places began studying those two prophetic books.

The long night of the Dark Ages had ended with the close of the “1260” years of papal oppression in 1798 (cf. Dan. 7:25, Rev. 12:6); the capture and imprisonment of the pope had inspired Thomas Carlyle to declare (mistakenly) that the papacy was dead forever. Now the chains that had bound people’s minds were broken; people could think and study and even speak! (Not the least exciting thing to happen was that 13 British colonies in North America had just won their independence!)

A Methodist pastor, Josiah Litch, recognizing that Revelation 9 was a prophecy of Islam, was moved to study into the time prophecy of the sixth “trumpet—the “an hour, and a day, and a month, and a year” allotted to the Muslim Ottoman Turks’ supremacy. Litch was concerned: the “day for a year” principle that Isaac Newton had alleged—was it really true? Would history uphold it?

That prophetic time period equaled in literal history a total of 391 years and fifteen days.

Relying on the most authentic history of that time, Gibbons’ Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, Litch took July 27, 1299 as the starting point (Gibbon had said, “The singular accuracy of the date seems to disclose some foresight of the rapid and destructive growth of the monster”). The Roman emperor in Constantinople had on that beginning date meekly surrendered its independence to the Ottoman Turks. The end of the 391 years and 15 days would be August 11, 1840.

Litch didn’t wait for the date to arrive; two years before he boldly published his prediction of what would happen, and many thousands watched anxiously. On that date, the Sultan of Turkey meekly surrendered his independence into the hands of the European powers. The year-day principle was firmly grounded in history!

Now comes a worldwide resurgence of interest in those prophecies about Islam combined with a clearer view of justification by faith that transcends both Calvinism and Arminianism. It’s a message that must lighten the earth with long-delayed glory (Rev. 18:1-4).

Be sure to check your e-mail for "Dial Daily Bread" again tomorrow.

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Robert J. Wieland's inspirational "Dial Daily Bread" phone message is available via e-mail to anyone who wishes to receive a daily portion of uplifting Good News. "Dial Daily Bread" is FREE. Due to travel or other circumstances, there may be intervals when "Dial Daily Bread" will not be sent.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Dial Daily Bread

Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread":

If you are under a cloud of fear, or not sure if the Lord accepts you, you do not understand His discipline, you feel like you are on the outside, you know you have sinned and you do not deserve His blessings, the party is going on inside and you feel “thrust into outer darkness,” the Father has commissioned His Son Jesus to minister especially for you:

“‘The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me,’” He says, “‘because He hath appointed Me to preach the gospel [good news] to the poor; He hath sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, to preach the acceptable year of the Lord’” (Luke 4:18, 19).

Even Christ’s enemies confessed that He “receiveth sinners” (15:2). The last page of the Bible welcomes all who are “thirsty” (Rev. 22:17). David has written the exact prayer for all to pray who feel that they are unworthy sinners: it’s Psalm 51; read it, on your knees.

“But there are so many things I must do and I don’t know how to do them all.” Well, two things in Hebrews 11:6: (1) you must believe that God exists, and (2) you must believe that “He is a Rewarder of them that diligently seek Him.” That is, that He is faithful love.

“But that’s my problem: I don’t know how to believe. I was born and bred in unbelief.” Wait a moment: God has already given you “a measure of faith” (Rom. 12:3), the gift of believing; no one can ever say that God has deprived him of faith! He has given you exactly the amount you need for eternal salvation. Now, choose to believe. But maybe it‘s as difficult for you as it was for the poor father of the devil-tormented son in Mark 4. He had come to the ordained pastors of the church (yes, the nine disciples at the foot of the mountain in Matthew 17) and they had failed to help him and he was distraught with a terrible fear (you would be, too, if the Lord’s own disciples, some of the Twelve, had pronounced your case hopeless!).

And then the Lord Jesus appears to dangle a great blessing before him, IF—“all things are possible to him that believeth” and in a burst of honesty you also cry out “with tears, ... Help Thou mine unbelief.” But that ellipsis contains your deliverance: “Lord, I believe ...” (9:17-24, KJV). You confess the battle raging in your soul: you believe and at the same time you disbelieve. Now, in the face of the most discouraging outlook, choose to believe. Let the tears come—that father cried and cried; then choose again. You can never perish while you pray that simple prayer; people wiser than I have said so.

Be sure to check your e-mail for "Dial Daily Bread" again tomorrow.

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Robert J. Wieland's inspirational "Dial Daily Bread" phone message is available via e-mail to anyone who wishes to receive a daily portion of uplifting Good News. "Dial Daily Bread" is FREE. Due to travel or other circumstances, there may be intervals when "Dial Daily Bread" will not be sent.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Dial Daily Bread

Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread":

Jesus said that anyone who is healthy doesn’t need a doctor (Luke 5:31). It would follow likewise, that any married couple who know what love is don’t need a marriage counselor.

But we live in a fallen world where the healthiest sometimes need a physician and the happiest of couples sometimes need some encouragement and reproof.

What a blessing when that Physician is Christ Himself and that Counselor is our Savior. In each instance, He is the One of whom it is said, “Unto us a Son is given” (Isa. 9:6); Christ became one of us, a member of the fallen human race who was Himself never sick and who never sinned. Yet whenever He healed the sick, He took their sickness upon Himself: “He ... healed all who were sick, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Isaiah the prophet saying: ‘He Himself ... bore our sicknesses’” (Matt. 8:16, 17). A supremely healthy Man bore sickness in His own body! (Let anyone who is sick ponder this.)

As a Marriage Counselor He is also “unto us a Son is given,” One of us. The most painful experience a good man can suffer is to be despised, rejected, hated by the one woman in all the world whom he truly loves, and Jesus has had that experience—in an infinite dimension. Because the “woman” is the “church” on which He has bestowed His supreme regard.

“Church” isn’t necessarily synonymous with the word “denomination,” but it is distinguished in Revelation 12:17 and 14:12 as the one that stands out distinctly different in that it “keeps the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus.” Thus it is different from “Babylon” which is “fallen” (14:8; 18:2). If this church keeps the commandments of God, it has had to “follow the Lamb wherever He goes,” and “in whose mouth there is no guile,” who is “without fault before the throne of God” (14:4, 5). There has been something in its earthly history that is different: there was a time when it eagerly and sincerely accepted every ray of truth that God permitted to shine on its pathway. No resistance; a betrothal that brought joy to the heart of the Son of God who is still and will be forever a human being as well, but “God with us.”

And then as “she” grew to maturity, “she” turned on Him in “cruel” rejection. “Impossible,” you say? It’s portrayed in Scripture in the Song of Solomon chapter 5. It’s the love story of the ages. And the alienation must and will be healed in at-one-ment, reconciliation, repentance. Don’t “divorce” yourself from the church. It is to become the bride of the Lamb when it learns to appreciate what the Lamb has suffered and given for it.

Be sure to check your e-mail for "Dial Daily Bread" again tomorrow.

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Robert J. Wieland's inspirational "Dial Daily Bread" phone message is available via e-mail to anyone who wishes to receive a daily portion of uplifting Good News. "Dial Daily Bread" is FREE. Due to travel or other circumstances, there may be intervals when "Dial Daily Bread" will not be sent.

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Dial Daily Bread

Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread":

The teens were shocked a bit, or at least interested, when I suggested that God has at His heavenly headquarters a special angel whose career is that of Chief Cartoonist. Of course, to them “cartoons” are funny papers; they haven’t come to the age that they appreciate political cartoons. But the idea is not outlandish. We read in Revelation 1:1 of how the Father, the supreme Ruler of the universe, takes those five steps in communicating to us the book of Revelation: [1] its source was He, who [2] “God gave [it] unto [His Son] Jesus Christ” with the ultimate goal [5] of giving it to us in a form we could assimilate, “to shew unto his servants things which must shortly come to pass.”

The huge mass of information would be greater than the Encyclopedia Britannica, beyond our comprehension; so in one of the five steps, it must pass through this special angel, the Cartoonist whose is this special task: “and He sent and signified it by His angel,” who then communicated it “unto His servant John” in a form that the lonely apostle on Patmos could transcribe: a slender little volume of 22 chapters. “Signified” is put in sign form.

The “cartoon” method of communication is illustrated in the book of Daniel. The pagan king Nebuchadnezzaar is given a dream (obviously crafted by this same “angel”) that depicts world history in the form of an “image” with a head of gold, breast and arms of silver, thighs of brass, legs of iron, and feet and toes of iron and clay mixed. And there we have the truth of world history that Charlemagne, Napoleon, Kaiser Wilhelm, even Hitler, battled against vainly. Europe simply will not “cleave.” The United States of America can “cleave” but not the states of Europe.

The same “angel” gave Daniel the visions of the four beasts coming out of the sea (ch. 7), etc. All it takes to understand these two books of Daniel and Revelation is some humble common sense and the patient willingness to let the holy book, the Bible, explain itself. “Humble” because the Holy Spirit has enlightened reverent-minded scholars in past centuries to dig for truth and have found it, and the common sense enables us to appreciate their contributions; but their mines, unlike the “49ers” gold mines, have not been exhausted; there is still precious truth yet to be discovered and understood—though it will never contradict previous truth.

The fifth step is you and I understanding and appreciating this “revelation” in the book that bears the name. Read it, as if for your life, as it may well be in the tumultuous times “which must shortly come to pass.” The “blessing” is promised; reading it brings happiness.

Be sure to check your e-mail for "Dial Daily Bread" again tomorrow.

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Robert J. Wieland's inspirational "Dial Daily Bread" phone message is available via e-mail to anyone who wishes to receive a daily portion of uplifting Good News. "Dial Daily Bread" is FREE. Due to travel or other circumstances, there may be intervals when "Dial Daily Bread" will not be sent.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Dial Daily Bread

Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread":

The marriage is on the rocks and healing seems impossible; a flood of bitter memories is almost all they have left between them. Yet they are church members and they both dread divorce and each knows he/she is unworthy (and incapable!) alone to raise the innocent children whom they have brought into the world. What once was love (or was it just fun for sex?) seems dead.

But there’s that nagging remembrance: our marital failure brings shame and disgrace on the Lord Jesus Christ, for He is the One who invented marriage, and the universe is watching.

When we think of Him as a cold infinite institution even bigger than the Pentagon, that doesn’t disturb us because what we do is a mere pinprick. But when we think of Him as a real human (divine) Person forever intimately given to us, a purpose begins to form in our souls—we can’t heap further pain on Him. Our marital failure is a re-crucifixion of the One whom the Jews nailed to a tree, and He still feels pain (and nakedness-shame).

Marital failures are serious; they drive spikes in His wrist and ankle bones. And He must bear listening to the sobs of innocent children.

Satan says this couple must have the pleasure of divorce so they can start again with someone else, or at least, find peace alone; and the children? Better off with the divorce, at least that’s what the world says (and if we forget Christ and heaven that seems true).

But we don’t want spiritual disaster; and yes we both love the children. So let’s welcome the path to healing; the Savior shows it to us in His word:

(1) Spend a full hour alone with Him, the best Marriage Counselor ever; accept the “chastening of the Lord”(read Heb. 12:4-12). (2) Be serious: turn off TV, radio, CD’s; humble your soul in quietness alone. (3) Welcome this “chastening of the Lord;” stop resisting it. (4) Let Him “slay” you (Job 13:15). Our text says “every son whom He receiveth,” so the “houseband” is the one primarily in need. (5) Don’t resist identifying yourself as “less than the least of all saints” (Eph. 3:8). In your broken-heartedness don’t reject that last word—you are one of His “saints.” (6) That’s a tremendously healthy gift of self-respect. (7) Rejoice, you’ve taken the first step in saving your marriage.

Be sure to check your e-mail for "Dial Daily Bread" again tomorrow.

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Robert J. Wieland's inspirational "Dial Daily Bread" phone message is available via e-mail to anyone who wishes to receive a daily portion of uplifting Good News. "Dial Daily Bread" is FREE. Due to travel or other circumstances, there may be intervals when "Dial Daily Bread" will not be sent.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Dial Daily Bread

Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread":

A new book about Islam has been published, ISLAM: GOD’S FORGOTTEN BLESSING, by a lay evangelist, Stephen Dickie, who has successfully proclaimed the everlasting gospel in a Muslim community in central Asia.

Thank God for this book and for this man’s ministry! Theologically, he believes that 2 + 2 = 4 and he says so; that’s refreshing! Instead of coming up with some new-fangled private interpretation of the “seven trumpets” of Revelation 8-11, this man humbly recognizes that the Holy Spirit has been working through the centuries and has enlightened reverent-minded Bible students who have clearly seen Islam in chapter 9. That truth is a key to unlocking the book of Revelation!

This author recognizes August 11, 1840 as the fulfillment of the “hour, and a day, and a month, and a year” of prophetic time in 9:15. He says let’s pay attention to the pioneer students of Bible prophecy, not that they were infallible (no one claims that!) but that the Holy Spirit was leading them as they were able to understand and follow. One author whom he rehabilitates is Uriah Smith whose book on Daniel and Revelation was a classic in the 19th century. Not everything written in the 19th century was horse and buggy thinking.

In fact, the Lord Jesus was prepared to bless those who then believed that 2 + 2 = 4 (in understanding Daniel and Revelation!). He wanted to send that “other angel” of Revelation 18 to lighten the earth with the glory of the message of Christ and Him crucified, the message that would have penetrated into the heart of Islam and reached its fourth part of world population. Many Muslims want to understand the Bible. Jesus has been deeply disappointed that His people have been so dilatory in believing and proclaiming truth.

An example of the disappointment that Jesus has had to endure is the story of that celebrated author Uriah Smith: he did have a basically correct view of Daniel and Revelation but he hardened his heart against “a most precious” new understanding of Romans, Galatians, and Ephesians which was what Paul actually said. Thus Smith knocked himself out of the running. And now much time has gone by and confusion has been prolific.

Dickie’s book respects the pioneers. It will not be the end of controversy, true; but it may be the beginning of the end of confusion. (P. O. Box 385, Kasson, MN 55944; sdickie@kmtel.com)

Be sure to check your e-mail for "Dial Daily Bread" again tomorrow.

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Robert J. Wieland's inspirational "Dial Daily Bread" phone message is available via e-mail to anyone who wishes to receive a daily portion of uplifting Good News. "Dial Daily Bread" is FREE. Due to travel or other circumstances, there may be intervals when "Dial Daily Bread" will not be sent.

Monday, July 09, 2007

Dial Daily Bread

Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread":

Millions of Christians around the world are studying today about King Josiah of Judah, the king who did everything just right. He knew that the kingdom of David of which he was now the ruler was virtually on the rocks; their very existence was only a millimeter away from national disaster, for God was on the verge of withdrawing His care and protection from them, leaving them to the tender mercies of the pagan Babylonians.

Hilkiah had found the book of Deuteronomy in the Temple; reading it brought the king to his knees and tears to his eyes. He was utterly sincere in his efforts to avert the national ruin he saw coming. He put his whole soul into a work of repentance as he saw it was needed; what he led the people into was a “national repentance” or one might say, a “corporate repentance.” It began in the king’s palace, the proper place for any national or corporate repentance to begin.

The dear Lord heard and answered the penitent king’s prayers—the God of heaven recognized Josiah and honored him before the world. The young prophet Jeremiah was ecstatic; at last the Holy Spirit is being enabled to work; the throne of David is being rehabilitated; Jeremiah hopes that there will be no more occasion for weeping his eyes out in anguish for the incomprehensible rebellion of God’s own people. The evidence indicates that they are repenting and doing what is right, for they are following their king (cf. 9:1, 2).

But that was exactly their problem—they were following their king. That’s what Israel did throughout their history—they followed their good kings like Hezekiah and Josiah and they followed their bad kings like Manasseh and Ahab. They never truly followed the Lord!

Josiah’s glorious work came to a sudden and abrupt end when he rejected the living demonstration of the Spirit of Prophecy. Everything depended on his discernment, the “eyesalve” that Christ offers His last days church. But Josiah didn’t discern the strange thing that God had done, which he normally couldn’t fathom—God had given Pharoah Necho that gift, and good king Josiah refused to believe it.

Against this inspired counsel, he went to war against the Egyptian king, was wounded by an Egyptian arrow, driven back to Jerusalem in his “ambulance” chariot (imagine his physical agony in that rough ride!), where he died and Jeremiah and the nation mourned.

Study the story in 2 Chronicles 34, 35; you will see evidence that the poor king knew only the old covenant, not the new. Then 36 is downhill, all the way to ruin. Now let us learn!

Be sure to check your e-mail for "Dial Daily Bread" again tomorrow.

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Robert J. Wieland's inspirational "Dial Daily Bread" phone message is available via e-mail to anyone who wishes to receive a daily portion of uplifting Good News. "Dial Daily Bread" is FREE. Due to travel or other circumstances, there may be intervals when "Dial Daily Bread" will not be sent.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Dial Daily Bread

Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread":

The Bible tells of “last things” that simple-minded people around the world can understand ( Lincoln said that God must love common people, He made so many of them):

* “The Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet of God” (1 Thess. 4:16; that’s the second coming of Christ that He promised in John 14:1-3—personal, visible, literal).

* There will be a mortal people living on earth who will welcome Him: “Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air” (vs. 17).

* Then and only then will this “mortality” be exchanged for “immortality,” because “we shall not all sleep but we shall all be changed, in a moment in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet ... This mortal must put on immortality” (1 Cor. 15: 51-53). Clear, simple!

* Those who at that day are “alive and remain” will be “the harvest of the earth.” Jesus Christ, as an eager Bridegroom longing to come to claim His Bride will be straining at the leash for the command that lets Him come but He must wait until “another angel [who comes] out of the temple ... [cries] with a loud voice, ‘Thrust in Your sickle and reap: for the time is come for You to reap; for the harvest of the earth is ripe’” (Rev. 14:14, 15). Jesus must follow directions! The timing of the permission depends on His people on earth.

* The context tells what “ripe” means: a group in mystic number “144,000” have “overcome even as [Christ] overcame and sat down with [His] Father on His throne” “without fault ... in whose mouth there is no guile” (3:21; 14:5). Impossible? No! It’s true.

*Being “ripe” means they have outgrown their former status of mere flower-girl at the “marriage of the Lamb,” now grown up to share with Him executive authority in bringing to a belated end the great controversy between Christ and Satan. Due to His people overcoming, He now can be acclaimed “King of kings and Lord of lords.”

Nobody dares be arrogant and say who will be in that mystic “144,000.” The Bible says there will be such a people who like Christ have “condemned sin” while living in the same “sinful flesh” He “took” in which He “condemned sin” and rendered it forever defeated (Rom. 8:3, 4; Heb. 2:14-17). The idea is a “blessed hope” to be cherished by all who have begun to appreciate the grace of God (Titus 2:11-13).

Be sure to check your e-mail for "Dial Daily Bread" again tomorrow.

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Please forward these messages to your friends and encourage them to subscribe. The "Dial Daily Bread" web page resides at: http://1888message.org/dailybread/

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Robert J. Wieland's inspirational "Dial Daily Bread" phone message is available via e-mail to anyone who wishes to receive a daily portion of uplifting Good News. "Dial Daily Bread" is FREE. Due to travel or other circumstances, there may be intervals when "Dial Daily Bread" will not be sent.

Saturday, July 07, 2007

Dial Daily Bread

Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread":

Your unworthy servant is simple-minded, neither theologian nor scholar, just a missionary to likewise simple minded people everywhere. To him the gospel must be clear and simple:

* The loving Creator is our personal heavenly Father (Matt. 6:9).
* He made us to be happy in sinlessness (Eccl. 7:29).
* But our first father Adam plunged us into sin (1 Cor. 15:22).
* “In the day” that we should sin, “thou shalt die,” the Father said (Gen. 2:17). The condemnation of Adam now passed on the whole human race because we are all children of Adam. (Adam brought it on us, not God!)
* But not one sinner in 6000+ years of “our history” has suffered that actual, real “condemnation.” It has only been a legal verdict hanging over us; this should be clear to all—otherwise we would all be dead forever! (Our first death is only a sleep, 1 Thess. 4:16.)
* But there has been One Exception: Christ, the Son of God, took upon Himself our humanity, became one of us, mortal as we; took on His sinless nature our sinful nature, specifically so He might bear that “condemnation” in Himself and set us free from it (Rom. 8:3, 4).
* It was on His cross that He endured its full brunt. The death He died was the real thing, the 100% outworking of that “condemnation” that now only legally hangs over us (Gal. 3:13; Deut. 21:22).
* Therefore, really and truly, up to this moment, He has saved us all from the second death that is our “condemnation.” “Every man” who breathes, believer or not, can shout, praise the Lord! (Gal. 5:1; Eph. 1:3-6).
* Other than Christ, not one human has suffered the “condemnation” thus far, no matter how bad he has been. No one will, until at the end of the 1000 years of Revelation 20:11-15.
* No matter who you are, or how sinful you have been, Christ has indeed saved you from that “second death,” so far! The fact you breathe is proof.
* Another name for all that is “grace” that abounds more than all our sin (Rom. 5:21).
*You cannot ever suffer eternal death unless you choose to resist and reject the gift that Christ has given you “in Himself” (vss. 15-18).

Leap for joy forever after!

Be sure to check your e-mail for "Dial Daily Bread" again tomorrow.

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Robert J. Wieland's inspirational "Dial Daily Bread" phone message is available via e-mail to anyone who wishes to receive a daily portion of uplifting Good News. "Dial Daily Bread" is FREE. Due to travel or other circumstances, there may be intervals when "Dial Daily Bread" will not be sent.

Friday, July 06, 2007

Dial Daily Bread

A prince in Israel, Herbert E. Douglass, has just passed his 80th and of course there was a celebration of family and friends. Your servant was invited to be present; he greeted the guest of honor as “spring chicken,” because, well, he has just turned 91.

The two of us are privileged to be among that select few who still serve the Lord as best they can in the rarified Mt. Everest atmosphere of their 80’s and 90’s. Are we few seeking to be among that special company who will welcome the return of the Lord Jesus as Paul describes them in 1 Thessalonians, “we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord”? ( 4:15). No, that could be arrogance; and that would be inappropriate for elders.

But let’s confess the truth: we do cherish what Titus 2:13 says is “the blessed hope.” We two, apparently, though far separated in youth, have both cherished it since we were about 12 when we individually unknown to each other were baptized into the fellowship of the church that professes to look for Jesus’ second coming.

Your servant was privileged to say a few words in the august gathering, from his now rather exalted status of an older birth date by a bit more than a decade. Remember, guest of honor, that Moses was 80 when he began his life work; the dear Lord has granted you a clear mind and a warm heart of love for “the truth of the gospel” (Gal. 2:5, 9). Don’t lay down your pen; let the Master quicken you and nerve you to speak to the hosts of Israel. Some will enter the Promised Land; don’t hesitate to hold your place among them as the Lord shall direct.

It’s always exhilarating to stand in defense of truth when it seems that all around you forsake it and would humiliate you for taking an unpopular stand. Douglass stood tall and erect in defense of this unworthy servant one day some 40 years ago in a committee of revered theologians and church administrators who were severely hostile; they smelled blood—this writer stood poised to be expelled from fellowship in the ministry by the loss of ministerial credentials when in a real sense Douglass saved his “life” (a pastor/missionary’s “life” is his career of ministry).

The end is not yet; there are a few more steps to the summit and the atmosphere gets more rare each new day. Whoever you are out there somewhere around the world who reads this trivial daily contribution, you can help; you are important. You can pray.

Please do.

Be sure to check your e-mail for "Dial Daily Bread" again tomorrow.

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Robert J. Wieland's inspirational "Dial Daily Bread" phone message is available via e-mail to anyone who wishes to receive a daily portion of uplifting Good News. "Dial Daily Bread" is FREE. Due to travel or other circumstances, there may be intervals when "Dial Daily Bread" will not be sent.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Dial Daily Bread

Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread":

It was the greatest love affair that has ever been on this earth: a man had met the woman of his dreams. His loneliness had been the most painful ever felt on earth, his life a profound emptiness until he came face to face with her—then suddenly his life was thrilled with meaning. She was the perfect fulfillment of his dreams, every cell of his being in love with her. There was “no rose in all the world” until she came, no star that shone until her light arose on him.

The one man who has known the most of what it means to be a man in love was Adam, and the woman whom he loved was Eve. She was indeed God’s gift to him, as the Hebrew tries to tell us, “an help meet for him,” KJV, or “answering to him” (Gen. 2:18). Just perfectly what his soul longed for.

And then she had transgressed the holy law of God, her sin the prototype of billions of sins on earth to come. And she seemed to be so happy in her new-found freedom of rebellion against God; a new life, a new freedom, a new wonderment. That gorgeous creature, the glorified serpent had introduced her to real l-i-f-e and she became an instant “missionary” for her new life treasure. She longed to share it with her husband. So Eve became the temptress of all time.

In a flash Adam knew what had happened when she handed him the forbidden fruit; God had not forbidden them to touch it—only to eat it. Holding it in his hand, Adam had not sinned. He knew what was involved; he saw these 6000+ years of anguish stretching before them. But oh, how could he separate himself from her, the woman of his dreams, his love? Seizing the fruit he thrust it into his mouth—love for her must win this struggle, not devotion to God. And so sin entered this world.

Has any man ever sacrificed the love of woman for fellowship with Christ? Christ Himself knows love for a “woman,” love that absorbs His soul. We sinful humans can only pray, “Lord, I believe; help Thou mine unbelief,” or transliterated, “Lord, I love You, but help my weakness in my love for her (or him)!”

None of us can be “worthy” of Christ; but He says the truth: there comes a time when we must yield “the dearest idol I have known, whate’er that idol be” in devotion to the One who went to hell for us, for He alone is agape (Matt. 10:37; Luke 14:26). We’re closer to Eden than we may have thought. Whom do we truly worship?

Be sure to check your e-mail for "Dial Daily Bread" again tomorrow.

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Robert J. Wieland's inspirational "Dial Daily Bread" phone message is available via e-mail to anyone who wishes to receive a daily portion of uplifting Good News. "Dial Daily Bread" is FREE. Due to travel or other circumstances, there may be intervals when "Dial Daily Bread" will not be sent.

Monday, July 02, 2007

Dial Daily Bread

ear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread":

Thank God, the Father, that:

(a) We have the Bible, both Old and New Testaments.
(b) We have the history of God’s dealings with His people of all ages.
(c) We have the Savior, the Son of God, who has been given to us for eternity,
(d) Who has redeemed us, predestinated us to salvation in Himself,
(e) Has “poured out His soul unto death,” thus has died the second death of the world,
(f) Has given us the gift of “the Comforter,” the Holy Spirit,
(g) Whose first work and thus the assurance of His presence is, that He convicts us of sin,
(h) And thus we know that we are not “orphans,”
(i) That we can pray “Abba, Father” and thus know that we have been “adopted,”
(j) That we have Psalm 130 and we can cry to God “out of the depths,”
(k) That we have the story of Gethsemane,
(l) That we have the story of the cross where the Son of God felt forsaken of His Father so that we may never feel that forsakenness.
(m) And thank God that we have the story of Ziklag.

David has been anointed of the Lord in his youth to be king of Israel; “the anointed of the Lord,” King Saul, has persecuted him mercilessly, and hunted him as though he were an animal. David has taken refuge in caves, has appeared forsaken of God. His anointing of the Lord has appeared to be only a joke. The deep pain of feeling forsaken, betrayed of God, has been inexplicably persistent, apparently endless and total and final (he doesn’t know that he is a symbol of Christ, that he must live out Christ’s coming rejection so that the grand and glorious Messiah must be “the Son of David”).

Now, Wall Street wouldn’t risk a dime on David’s future; his own men are talking of stoning him. Next to Christ at His cross, this seems to be the most disconsolate situation any servant of God has ever gotten himself into.

So what did David do? (a) He prayed, “bring me the ephod.” God responded, he felt certain that he must chase those who carried his family captive (he overtook them and saved his family). (b) David “encouraged himself in the Lord” (see 1 Sam. 30:1-6). When you feel that your life is in ruins as David’s was, count what you still have as gifts from the Lord. At your worst, you’re better off than many are! Say thank You to the Giver.

Be sure to check your e-mail for "Dial Daily Bread" again tomorrow.

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Robert J. Wieland's inspirational "Dial Daily Bread" phone message is available via e-mail to anyone who wishes to receive a daily portion of uplifting Good News. "Dial Daily Bread" is FREE. Due to travel or other circumstances, there may be intervals when "Dial Daily Bread" will not be sent.

Sunday, July 01, 2007

Dial Daily Bread

Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread":

Commentaries and scholarly tomes can line our library shelves, but if you want to understand something in the Bible, let the simple text speak.

Take that celebrated Romans 5 passage that the apostle wrote: the New English Bible makes it clear, and the Revised English Bible a trifle clearer yet. Note as we read (a), what is the “condemnation” that Adam brought on all mankind; and then in that light (b), note what is the salvation that Christ (as our “last” or second Adam) gave every one of us:

“God’s act of grace is out of all proportion to Adam’s wrongdoing. For if the wrong doing of that one man brought death upon so many, its effect is vastly exceeded by the grace of God and the gift that came to so many by the grace of the one man, Jesus Christ. And again, the gift of God is not to be compared in its effect with that one man’s sin; for the judicial action, following on the one offence, resulted in a verdict of condemnation, but the act of grace, following on so many misdeeds, resulted in a verdict of acquittal. If, by the wrongdoing of one man, death established its reign through that one man, much more shall those who in far greater measure receive grace and the gift of righteousness live and reign through the one man, Jesus Christ.

“It follows, then, that as the result of one misdeed was condemnation for all people, so the result of one righteous act is acquittal and life for all” (vss. 15-18).

Note, Adam’s “condemnation” on us is a “judicial action, ... [a] verdict of condemnation.” Not one human being has as yet suffered that actual, literal “condemnation” with the one exception of Jesus on His cross (“My God, why have You forsaken Me?”). It hangs over us but has never yet been effected (cf. Matt. 5:45).

Note again: what Christ did to reverse that “verdict of condemnation” on the entire human race is a judicial “verdict of acquittal” in the gift of Himself on the same human race. But note: we are given liberty to “receive” the gift or we can refuse it; those who “receive” it “reign” as kings “through the one man, Jesus” (there’s your simple John 3:16 “believing”).

The “condemnation ” and the “acquittal” are balanced, both with no input from ourselves. Both happened before we were born. What the second Adam did cancels what the first one did. When we receive His gift,” we experience at-one-ment with God and that includes reconciliation with His holy law. And there’s your beeline of truth simple and clear, direct through reams of musty commentaries. Look up, rejoice, “receive” the “gift.”

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