Friday, September 26, 2008

Dial Daily Bread

Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread,"

The economic meltdown is frightening to many people. I know some who desperately need just a little money in order to survive what may come.

What I think of is a passage in Isaiah: “The sinners in Zion are afraid; fearfulness hath surprised the hypocrites. Who among us shall dwell with the devouring fire? Who among us shall dwell with everlasting burnings?

“He that walketh righteously, and speaketh uprightly; he that despiseth the gain of oppressions, that shaketh his hands from holding of bribes, that stoppeth his ears from hearing of blood, and shutteth his eyes from seeing evil; he shall dwell on high: his place of defense shall be the munitions of rocks; bread shall be given him; his waters shall be sure ...” (33:14-16).

I don’t know how Isaiah could any more clearly speak of TV.

Any fiction in TV or movies is to be eschewed, and especially that which consists of violence.

Beware of the “love” of violence! The Lord has said something very severe about it: “The LORD trieth the righteous: but the wicked and him that loveth violence his soul hateth” (Psalm 11:5).

A violent movie on TV may be exciting for youth to watch; but what the Lord virtually says is, “You love violence? I will have to let you have what you love; I won’t deliver you from it in fact when it comes.”

To watch a violent movie involves a hardening of the heart; it is always inevitable. And a hardened heart will not find entrance into the Lord’s New Jerusalem, the City of peace.

I once gave Bible studies in a family where there was some welcome for them; but the papa in the family was not interested. I tried to interest him, but he was cold. His pastime? Pulling the wings off flies!

A tiny little bit of violence? I believe it had its dire effect on his soul.

Outside of the Holy City, the New Jerusalem, are those who “love and make a lie” (Rev. 22:15). In simple language, that means “fiction.”

Let us plead with the dear Lord to give us a love for truth!

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

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Dial Daily Bread

Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread,"

As the sun rises for another day, it looks down upon billions of people, each created in the image of God, each redeemed by the blood of the Son of God, but so few who understand His great sacrifice. The world is dark with misapprehension of God. And the statistics tell us that the percentage of Christians to world population is steadily shrinking. People who are wiser and more thoughtful than I am wonder how the gospel can ever be effectively proclaimed to these billions.

But as surely as the run rises upon the earth this morning, so surely does “the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in His wings,” says Malachi (4:2). That is, to “those who fear [His] name,” and they are many. Christ is “the light that shineth in darkness, and the darkness does not overcome it” (John 1:5). He is “the true Light, which lighteth every person that cometh into the world” (vs. 9).

If I feel a burden for these billions who misapprehend God, how much more did the apostle Paul feel the same burden: “How then shall they call upon Him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher? and how shall they preach, except they be sent ... that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!?” (Rom. 10:14,15).

Great questions! But Paul says there is a soul-winning ministry going on that we don’t know about: “Have they not heard? Yes verily.” Then Paul quotes Psalm 19:4 where David directly compares the sunrise with the light of the gospel that shines—no, that’s not the word— reflected (that’s better). Everyone who will look, who “fears His name,” can find today some evidence of the love of God for lost souls.

You and I are not headlights; but we can be like the reflectors on bicycles that glow in the dark when even a little light shines on them. And you, one of earth’s billions, can light someone’s path today with that reflected light from the Sun of righteousness. Then when evening comes you can be happy!

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Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Dial Daily Bread

Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread,"

Our “father” Abraham was an unusual person. His neighbors and relatives and friends were mystified by him.

They all knew that he was immensely wealthy, that he could well afford to build himself a magnificent palace to live in; but instead, he chose to spend the rest of his life living in a tent!

The Bible story is this: “By faith he [Abraham] sojourned in the land of promise, as in a strange country, dwelling in tabernacles [tents] with Isaac and Jacob, the heirs with him of the same promise” (Heb. 11:9).

That’s a surprising thing for any fabulously wealthy man to do—choose to live in a tent all his life! What was the “promise”?

“He looked for a City which hath foundations, whose builder and Maker is God” (vs. 10).

Abraham wanted to bear witness to the world of his day, and yes to the world of all ages since, of two truths:

(a) There is not a city in the world today that has “foundations” like the New Jerusalem. No city but that one will be left standing after the seven last plagues.

(b) Abraham anticipated what the Lord Jesus later said, “Labour not for the meat which perisheth, but for that which endureth unto everlasting life” (John 6:27).

(c) So, why waste your life energies investing in what at the last will prove to be worthless?

(d) Does this mean that the Lord wants all of us to live in tents today, because our “father Abraham” chose to live that way?

No, for Abraham’s choice was symbolic; he was “the father of the faithful.” But the dear Lord wants us to use sanctified common sense: knowing that we are living in the last days of Christ’s ministry in the Most Holy, it’s good common sense that we live simply and economically. We don’t want anyone to accuse us in the final judgment day of being selfish and arrogant; Jesus loves the wealthy believers, but He also dwells in the modest, humble home where His name is revered.

We want Him to feel at home as a Guest of honor in our homes today. “Having food and raiment let us be therewith content. But they that will be rich fall into many foolish and hurtful lusts. ...” (1 Tim. 6:8, 9).

Let’s keep our eyes open, looking for the New Jerusalem “which hath foundations.”

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

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Dial Daily Bread

Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread,"

Do you like to fight battles? Or do you like to run away from them? Many wonderful Christian people, members of the church, want peace so much that they refuse to get down in the arena where battles for the Lord must be fought. To tell the truth, they’d rather watch TV than study for themselves to know the truth about the issues in the great controversy between Christ and Satan.

But Paul says in 1 Timothy 6:12, “Fight the good fight of faith,” and Jude says that we “should contend [earnestly] for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints,” for there are “certain men crept in unawares” who seek to corrupt that faith (vss. 3. 4). And Jesus tells us quite clearly, “Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law. And a man’s foes shall be they of his own household” (Matt. 10:34-36).

Wow! Is this what it means to follow Christ?

“But,” says someone, “surely this doesn’t apply to conflicts WITHIN the church!?? The world is full of controversy; I go to church so I can find a place of rest and peace!”

Well, I must tell the truth. Revelation 12:17 says that the dragon, the devil, in these last days, is “wroth” with the true church, and has gone to make war with the remnant church, where his most fearful strategy is to make war within the church against the pure, true gospel of Jesus. If Satan can corrupt THAT, he hopes yet to win the war against Christ. So Peter’s advice is exactly what we need today: “Be sober, be vigilant.” “Resist” him “steadfast in the faith” (1 Peter 5:8, 9).

But please be sure that you have your wits about you; that word “sober” means to think carefully lest you end up “resisting” the true work of the Holy Spirit! If you do THAT, you’ve crossed that line beyond which repentance is impossible. The stakes in the great controversy are high; the only place where you can avoid the battle is the grave. And please don’t choose to go there! Get on your knees; study; learn; stay awake; “watch”; and stand “for the right though the heavens fall,” says one wise writer.

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

Monday, September 22, 2008

Dial Daily Bread

Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread,"

Abraham has won his undying fame not because of any “work” which he did, but because he believed that something that was obviously “dead” would live immediately (pre-day-of-resurrection) because of the promise of the Lord. And that was his “dead” sexual powers to sire offspring.

“Abraham believed God, and it [his faith] was counted unto him for righteousness” (Rom. 4:3).

But what was it that he believed?

“Against hope [he] believed in hope, that he might become the father of many nations, according to that which was spoken, So shall thy seed be” (vs. 18).

The normal unbelief of all mankind (in the face of God’s promise) ridiculed the idea that anyone as old as he was could function sexually and sire offspring; he was “dead.”

But God had said “I have made thee a father of many nations,” past-present tense. It’s already been done! (vs. 17). Nothing physical “told” Abraham that it was true; he had nothing to depend on except the naked promise of God which unbelief said was foolhardy. But chose to believe!

It was an effort of choice that Abraham made to believe what God had said when everything looked impossible.

And not only was Abraham called to believe that his own “dead” body could sire offspring; there was “the deadness of Sarah’s womb”(vs. 19) to be confronted. Abraham had to believe for himself and then he also had to believe for her! “He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God” (vs. 20).

The entire unfallen universe marveled at his faith and glorified God because of it. They rejoiced that now it was proven for all to see, that fallen, sinful, naturally unbelieving man, can overcome and can think and believe in harmony with the mind of God.

The salvation of the fallen human race was assured now!

I’d like to be there when the resurrected Adam meets the Life-giver, and I would like to hear the Lord Jesus tell him, “Well done, good and faithful servant.”

You too, want to learn to believe the promises the Lord makes to you!

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

Friday, September 19, 2008

Dial Daily Bread

What did Jesus Christ accomplish for the world?

Did He DO something for us?

Or did He merely make an OFFER to do something for us, provided ... , or if ... ??

The Samaritans were right when they declared Him to be “the Savior of the world” (John 4:42). He already is—not might be, or maybe, or perhaps, or if ...

And yet it’s the honest truth that the great majority of earth’s inhabitants do not receive Him as their Savior—at least not yet.

Romans 5 has the answer: the Lord Jesus accomplished for “all men” a “judicial verdict of acquittal” which makes it possible for the heavenly Father to treat every man as though he had not sinned (vss. 15-21; cf. NEB). This is because Christ died for the world; anything that happened on the cross is universal; the thief who was crucified with Jesus was promised “today” a place in the Lord’s eternal kingdom (Luke 23:43). So will everyone be promised “today,” who comes to Jesus and repents and makes of Him the same request.

That involves humbling your heart, to put yourself in the thief’s place! But it’s worth it. —Robert J. Wieland

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Dial Daily Bread

Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread":

Another question that perplexes people is how to understand Galatians
5:17 which says: “The flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit
against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other, so that
ye cannot do the things that ye would.” Everybody knows about this
unending conflict. The “flesh” is our fallen, sinful nature that all
humans inherit from the fallen Adam which is in constant war against
the Holy Spirit. Everything that the Holy Spirit inspires us to believe
or to do, the flesh resists, 24 hours a day. The “flesh” per se never
gets converted; the heart is converted, and we can receive “the mind of
Christ,” but the “flesh” stays fallen until Jesus comes.

There are two ways that this verse is understood: (a) the flesh is
stronger than the Spirit, so that means you cannot do the good things
that you want to do. Those who take this dismal view see Romans 7:15-17
as a comment on it, where Paul says “What I would, that do I not; but
what I hate, that do I.” If Paul teaches us that the Holy Spirit is not
as strong as our sinful flesh, can you think of any worse News than
that? Surely that shouldn’t be called “Good News”!

But there is (b) which understands Paul as saying that the Holy Spirit
is 24 hours a day “striving” against the flesh; and if we “walk with
the Holy Spirit” (Gal. 6:16), then we CANNOT do the evil things our
sinful flesh constantly prompts us to do! The Holy Spirit wins the
battle 24/7.

The context of Paul’s sad comment in Romans 7 is 8:1-4; don’t skip it!

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Monday, September 15, 2008

Dial Daily Bread

Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread":

The question haunts Christians everywhere: “Is it easy or is it hard to
be saved? Are we correctly representing the Lord Jesus if we tell
people that following Jesus is the difficult way to choose?” Many
people, especially youth, have somehow gained the impression that to be
a genuine, true Christian is the hardest thing anybody can do, and for
sure Jesus tells us we must “strive to enter through the narrow gate”
(Luke 13:22), and we must “compete” as “in athletics” (2 Tim. 2:5), and
according to the NIV in Matt. 7:14 Jesus said His way is “difficult ”
(the KJV says “narrow,” and that is the correct meaning of the Greek
word there; it is not “difficult”).

On the other hand, Jesus says in Matthew 11:28-30 that His “yoke is
easy,” and His “burden is light.”

Who are we to believe--those who represent Jesus as telling us His way
is “difficult,” or those who tell us He says His yoke is easy and His
burden light? The two positions are as far apart as the east is from
the west.

There is a mountain in the West that had a steep road going up. Model
T’s had trouble climbing it, they found it “difficult.” No one could
honestly deny that the road up Pike’s Peak was “difficult.”

But if someone installed a V-8 engine in the Ford, it could zip up the
mountain road with “ease.” Is the missing factor our lack of
understanding what Paul calls “the truth of the gospel” (Gal. 2:5, 14)?

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Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Dial Daily Bread

Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread":

All who have awakened spiritually to comprehend something of the great
controversy that rages between Christ and Satan, are disturbed. They
are concerned as they see that same great controversy raging in the
hearts of loved ones. Maybe it’s their children who are caught up in
the rebellion against Christ that permeates the teenage world. The
battles night and day are as intense as the struggle Christ had to
endure in Gethsemane when He threw Himself on the ground sweating drops
of blood. In His agony He sobbed as He prayed, “O My Father, if it is
possible, let this cup [My coming cross] pass from Me.” Then as the
hours dragged by, in agony of soul He cried, “Nevertheless, not as I
will, but as You will” (Matt. 26:39).

That was the destiny hour of the world, yes of the universe itself:
should He let Satan win? It wasn’t the physical torture that He
dreaded, no; it was the horror of hell. Not the Fahrenheit temperature
of the lake of fire, no; eternal separation from life and light,
eternal exile from the smile of His Father. (I read in yesterday’s
paper of a criminal facing 40 years in solitary confinement; “it’s
hell,” he wailed in court.) The human soul of Jesus, yes, His divine
soul, recoiled from the anguish that is the essence of
hell--self-condemnation to the uttermost (He was in process of being
“made to be sin for us who knew no sin,” 2 Cor. 5:21).

If your teens are going wild beyond your control, question: have they
seen those same tears in your eyes? Have you done what those wonderful
disciples of Christ did not do--“watch with [Him] one hour” in
Gethsemane (Matt. 26:40)?

We teach our little children to sing “Jesus loves me, this I know,” and
they are so sweet; but all they can do is sleep through Gethsemane.

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

Friday, September 05, 2008

Dial Daily Bread

Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread":

The question came up in a Bible class: “Why does the Bible say that
‘God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto Himself,’ when the world
has not been reconciled to Him? It’s still in rebellion against Him?”
(2 Cor. 5:19).

That’s profound! If we say that the world was legally “reconciled” by
Christ’s sacrifice on His cross (that’s when “God was in Christ,
reconciling the world”), then the question comes up: “What does it mean
to be ‘legally reconciled’ when experientially the world is not

(1) If the alienated world were honest and understood what Christ
accomplished, it would be reconciled because that revelation of the
justice and love of God “in Christ” was complete. No lingering question
was left: Christ’s self-emptying love was so total that He “poured out
His soul unto death” (Isa. 53:12), “emptied Himself” like you drain an
empty bottle dry (Phil. 2:7), “tasted death for every man” (cf. Heb.
2:9), and in that way He died the “second death” for the entire world
(cf. Rev. 2:11; 20:14). Therefore He is not “imputing [our] trespasses
unto [us]” (2 Cor. 5:19 again).

(2) That’s enough to “reconcile” any alienated person who is honest!
Therefore, it was an “objective” reconciliation accomplished; the truth
is there waiting for any honest person to see it and believe, and in
that way “BE reconciled.”

(3) The “subjective” reconciliation takes place in the next verse when
you and I “beseech” people, “ministering THE WORD of reconciliation,”
pleading, “Be YE reconciled to God” (2 Cor. 5:20). The “legal” or
“objective” reconciliation then becomes “subjective,” or

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Thursday, September 04, 2008

Dial Daily Bread

Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread":

It’s an enormous cataclysm of humanity that has taken place over the
past 26 years. It amounts to the greatest spiritual earthquake since
the sixteenth century, when the Protestant Reformation swept through
Europe and dominated the beginnings of the American Revolution. The
Founding Forefathers of this nation vowed to establish here a
government without a king, and to have a church without a pope. George
strongly opposed any infiltration of the papacy in the
affairs of the new nation. The only Roman Catholic president ever
elected bent over backwards in his insistence not to mix his religion
with his political leadership of the nation; he was heart-dedicated to
the American Constitutional principle of religious liberty and
separation of church and state. He vowed not to let his church
influence his political leadership.

The current outpouring of national adoration for John Paul II has been
phenomenal. The once Protestant nation has become overwhelmingly Roman
Catholic in public sentiment. It can be safely said that never has any
nation in history so reversed itself within one generation. A world

Meanwhile, beyond all excitement and glitter of pomp and wealth, the
words of the Bible quietly speak to those who reverence its message.
Never has the book of Revelation spoken more eloquently than now. Now
note the next cataclysmic event to absorb world attention: the message
of that “other angel” of 18:1-4 that must and will “lighten the earth
with glory.”

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Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Dial Daily Bread

Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread":

Have you ever been tempted to doubt you belong in God’s house? Does He
consider you a homeless outsider? When you feel sinful and unworthy and
have fallen short, you wonder. One day a Bible writer (who, we don’t
know!), came to the temple of the Lord in Jerusalem feeling guilty and
unworthy to enter in. Then he saw a sight that encouraged him: a little
sparrow had made its home in some little nook or cranny in the most
holy section of the Temple, right near the sacred altar. There it was,
twittering in joy, laying its eggs and rearing its young in that part
of Solomon’s glorious temple where even the ordinary priests had no
permission to enter! In fact, only the great high priest of Israel was
permitted to enter that twice-sacred spot, and that on only one day in
the entire year. And there was the little sparrow, totally unconcerned
about the stay-away rules of Leviticus, confident of a welcome in the
house of the Lord!

Then the poet wrote Psalm 84: “How lovely is Your dwelling place, O
Lord, Almighty! My soul yearns, even faints for the courts of the Lord.
. . . Even the sparrow has found a home, and the swallow a nest for
herself, where she may have her young, a place near your altar, O Lord
Almighty, my King and my God” (vss. 1, 3, 4).

It is possible that Jesus had that poem in mind when He told the
disciples, “Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them
will fall to the ground apart from the will of your Father. And even
the very hairs of your head are all numbered. So don’t be afraid; you
are worth more than many sparrows” (Matt. 10:29, 30). If you own a home
and if your soul is generous, you will enjoy making visitors feel
welcome. It will be fun for you. Jesus says, “Do not be afraid, little
flock, for your Father has been pleased to give you the kingdom” (Luke
12:32). That word translated “pleased” means that it’s fun for the
Father to do that! He enjoys welcoming sinners to His house. It’s
constantly “open house” night and day. “The Spirit and the Bride say,
Come!” (Rev. 22:17). Jesus says, “Come to Me, all you who are weary and
burdened” (Matt. 11:28). “Burdened” with what? More than carrying sacks
of cement or office work! “Burdened” with sin, convictions of
selfishness, vain regrets.

“Blessed [happy] are those who dwell in Your house” (Psalm 84:4). You
are invited; come as you are, don’t try to dress up first. For once the
Pharisees were right, “This Man welcomes sinners!” (Luke 15:2).

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