Police Devotion 2-6-2018

And when he had taken the book, the four beasts and four and twenty elders fell down before the Lamb, having every one of them harps, and golden vials full of odours, which are the prayers of saints. And they sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation; And hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth. And I beheld, and I heard the voice of many angels round about the throne and the beasts and the elders: and the number of them was ten thousand times ten thousand, and thousands of thousands; Saying with a loud voice, Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing. (Revelation 5:8-12)

In the beginning of Revelation 5, John the Apostle sees God the Father on His throne holding a sealed book. No one is worthy to open it, and John weeps. But then he hears the wonderful news! “…the Lion of the tribe of Juda, the Root of David, hath prevailed to open the book, and to loose the seven seals thereof” (Revelation 5:5). John continues to write, “And I beheld, and, lo, in the midst of the throne and of the four beasts, and in the midst of the elders, stood a Lamb as it had been slain, having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God sent forth into all the earth. And he came and took the book out of the right hand of him that sat upon the throne” (Revelation 5:6-7). The Lamb is Jesus, God the Son. “Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world” (John 1:29). He is the Lamb because His sacrificial death on the cross at Calvary paid our sin-penalty before a holy God, and then He rose again.

Now back to our passage. Look how much attention Jesus gets! “Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing.” No one in heaven will be thinking that he got there because he worked hard. He will know that he is in heaven and not in hell entirely because of Jesus: “…thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood…”

Some people are celebrities and have fame and attention on earth: actors, musicians, pro-athletes, people of power and influence. Do you have a favorite celebrity? What has he or she done for you personally? Could you just call your favorite celebrity on the phone? Probably not. They may be special to you, but you’re not special to them. They may even be decent people; which hopefully, they are. Still, they’re only human, and their celebrity status will one day be gone, like all things of earth: “…for the things which are seen are temporal” (2 Corinthians 4:18).

In heaven, though, for eternity, Jesus will have everyone’s attention, and He’ll deserve it all! If you’ve trusted Jesus as Saviour, you know that He did for you that which you couldn’t do for yourself! Here on earth you can draw near to Him by reading His Word and by prayer, but one day, you’ll see Him face to face!

And someday I shall see Him face to face
To thank and praise Him for His wondrous grace
Which He gave to me when He made me free;
The blessed Son of God called Jesus.”
Jesus is the Sweetest Name I Know by Lela Long

Won’t it be wonderful to see the Lord Jesus face-to-face and spend eternity with Him in heaven! Have you trusted in the Lord Jesus as your personal Saviour? If you aren’t sure but want to know more, please click “Helpful Links” on the top menu and then “How Do I Go to Heaven?” on the dropdown menu.

 

Brian Miller 2/6/2018

Cleveland Baptist Church | 4431 Tiedeman Road, Brooklyn, Ohio 44l44 | 216.671.2822

 

 

Police Devotion 1-31-2018

“It pleased Darius to set over the kingdom an hundred and twenty princes, which should be over the whole kingdom; And over these three presidents; of whom Daniel was first: that the princes might give accounts unto them, and the king should have no damage.  Then this Daniel was preferred above the presidents and princes, because an excellent spirit was in him; and the king thought to set him over the whole realm. Then the presidents and princes sought to find occasion against Daniel concerning the kingdom; but they could find none occasion nor fault; forasmuch as he was faithful, neither was there any error or fault found in him. Then said these men, We shall not find any occasion against this Daniel, except we find it against him concerning the law of his God.” (Daniel 6:1-5)

Daniel was one of many Jews taken captive by the Babylonians. God allowed him to be an adviser to both Babylonian kings, Nebuchadnezzar and Belshazzar. After the Medo-Persian empire defeated the Babylonian empire, God allowed Daniel to be in a place of service under the Median king, Darius. Darius liked Daniel, “…because an excellent spirit was in him; and the king thought to set him over the whole realm.” Darius may not have seen an excellent spirit in his other leaders, but he saw it in Daniel, which no doubt is why he made Daniel the first president. Daniel was a servant to God, first and foremost. So his earthly boss—whoever it was—got an honest, industrious worker that he could trust.

As a cop, you see how others work. You probably know who cares about doing a good job and those who don’t. If you’re a boss, you know who needs little or no supervision, and who needs to be checked on. By the way, if you’ve trusted Jesus as Saviour, your co-workers, bosses, and subordinates should see “an excellent spirit” in you. As Christ’s servant, you are honest, industrious and care about people.

Another point: Daniel may not have liked where he was, but God had him there for a reason. You may be somewhere you don’t want to be, with bosses you may not like. But God has you there, so give the Lord your best work:  1 Peter 2:18 says, “Servants, be subject to your masters with all fear; not only to the good and gentle, but also to the froward.” So respect your boss, whether he’s a good boss or not.

The others knew that Daniel prayed, and so they drafted a law that said no one could make a petition to anyone but King Darius (not even to God) for thirty days. Those who did would be put into the lions’ den. They tricked Darius into signing it. Daniel knew the law had been signed but he still prayed: “Now when Daniel knew that the writing was signed, he went into his house; and his windows being open in his chamber toward Jerusalem, he kneeled upon his knees three times a day, and prayed, and gave thanks before his God, as he did aforetime” (Daniel 6:10). Another point: do what God wants, and let the chips fall where they will.  

The other leaders were glad and told Darius what Daniel had done. Darius was angry with himself for signing the law. He tried to save Daniel from the lions’ den, but he couldn’t. The law had been written. So he sadly ordered Daniel to be thrown into the lions’ den. Early the next morning, he checked on Daniel and found he was unhurt and who told him, “My God hath sent his angel, and hath shut the lions’ mouths, that they have not hurt me” (Daniel 6:22). Darius ordered Daniel out of the lions’ den, and his accusers into it.

When we “Trust in the LORD, and do good” (Psalm 37:3), as Daniel did, God has wonderful ways of working things out.

Please click “Helpful Links” on the top menu and then “How Do I Go to Heaven?” on the dropdown menu to see how to have your sins forgiven by receiving the Lord Jesus as your personal Saviour.

                                                                                                       

Brian Miller 1/31/2018

Cleveland Baptist Church | 4431 Tiedeman Road, Brooklyn, Ohio 44l44 | 216.671.2822

Police Devotion 1-18-2018

“And the king sat upon his seat, as at other times, even upon a seat by the wall: and Jonathan arose, and Abner sat by Saul’s side, and David’s place was empty. Nevertheless Saul spake not any thing that day: for he thought, Something hath befallen him, he is not clean; surely he is not clean. And it came to pass on the morrow, which was the second day of the month, that David’s place was empty: and Saul said unto Jonathan his son, Wherefore cometh not the son of Jesse to meat, neither yesterday, nor to-day? And Jonathan answered Saul, David earnestly asked leave of me to go to Bethlehem:…Then Saul’s anger was kindled against Jonathan, and he said unto him, Thou son of the perverse rebellious woman, do not I know that thou hast chosen the son of Jesse to thine own confusion, and unto the confusion of thy mother’s nakedness? For as long as the son of Jesse liveth upon the ground, thou shalt not be established, nor thy kingdom. Wherefore now send and fetch him unto me, for he shall surely die. And Jonathan answered Saul his father, and said unto him, Wherefore shall he be slain? what hath he done? And Saul cast a javelin at him to smite him: whereby Jonathan knew that it was determined of his father to slay David.” (1 Samuel 20:25-28, 30-33)

King Saul was told by the prophet Samuel that because of his sin, he was through being the king. However, Saul wouldn’t give up the kingdom. He rebelled against God, and as a result, was miserable. By the way, if you rebel against God, you’re going to be miserable, too. David had been anointed king, killed Goliath, and became a national hero. But Saul thought David wanted to usurp the kingdom which made him want to kill David so he kept a javelin handy. He tried to kill David with it at least twice. Jonathan convinced Saul once not to kill David and didn’t think he’d try it again. Yet David suspected that Saul wouldn’t tell Jonathan his true plans. Jonathan was caught between love for God, friendship with David, and a desire to do right and his loyalty to Saul.

At his dinner table with Abner his general by his side, Saul sat by the wall with his javelin nearby. Why did he sit by the wall? Well, if you go into a restaurant on duty for lunch, don’t you sit where you can watch just in case some low-life comes in to rob the place? And if you’re off duty, especially with your family, you’re also (hopefully) armed. But you don’t sit in the corner at home, put your gun on the dinner table, or ask your partner to forsake his own family and sit at the dinner table with you. Preparation is one thing; paranoia is another. You need to be reasonable, and Saul definitely was not being reasonable.

David was supposed to be at Saul’s for dinner but asked Jonathan to tell Saul that he had another engagement. Saul noticed David’s absence the first night, but said nothing. The second night Saul asked where David was. Jonathan told Saul that he’d let David go to his other engagement. When Saul heard that, he flew into a rage. He told Jonathan that he’d never be king as long as David were alive, and demanded that David be brought to be killed. Jonathan never wanted to be king. He wanted God’s will, and argued with his father in David’s defense. Saul furiously threw his javelin at Jonathan, but missed.

Jonathan had battlefield courage to face danger, and moral courage to stand up for right. As a cop, you need both kinds of courage, too. God can provide you grace to face danger, and moral courage to stand for right against those who would do wrong, and to put up with the fallout afterward. Psalm 37:3 says, “Trust in the LORD, and do good.” God is also pleased when we do right: “I know also, my God, that thou triest the heart, and hast pleasure in uprightness.” (1 Chronicles 29:17).

If you want to see from the Bible how to know that your sins are forgiven and that you have a home in heaven, please click “Helpful Links” on the top menu and then “How Do I Go to Heaven?” on the dropdown menu.

Brian Miller 1/18/2018
Cleveland Baptist Church | 4431 Tiedeman Road, Brooklyn, Ohio 44144 | 216.671.2822

“Sorry, I’m Working that Holiday” by Debbie Miller

“Not that I speak in respect of want:  for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.” (Philippians 4:11)

As a cop’s wife, you learn to live with concerns that most wives don’t have: your husband’s safety, toxic media coverage, and bad politics, just to name a few. A more immediate and potentially frustrating day-to-day burden for a cop’s wife is the work schedule. Especially if your husband works patrol, police work is 24/7/365, weekends and holidays. At times he’ll have to work weekends. If he gets involved in some matter toward the end of the shift and goes into overtime, he has to do his job.

Times will come when your husband can’t attend functions like church, graduations, family gatherings, and weddings. Don’t complain and be discontented. You’ll likely just cause friction with him. Did you ever hear a preacher talk about the “Proverbs 31” woman, the model for Christian womanhood?

“Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies.” (Proverbs 31:10)

Well, the “Proverbs 31” woman has an evil twin, the “Proverbs 21” woman:

“It is better to dwell in a corner of the housetop, than with a brawling woman in a wide house.” “It is better to dwell in the wilderness, than with a contentious and an angry woman.” (Proverbs 21:9, 19)

The Proverbs 21 woman complains and argues. Don’t be the Proverbs 21 woman. If you make a habit of complaining, don’t be surprised when your husband spends more time in the garage, basement, or other “corner of the housetop”-type place to get away from you.

Paul said in our opening verse that he “learned” to be content, so apparently at some point he was not content with his circumstances. Yet God dealt with his heart and he learned to be content. If you’re not content with your spouse’s occupation, God can do the same with you as He did with Paul.

The work schedule can be a particular headache during the holiday season, but one practical way to make the best of it is simply to work around it. If he works days on Thanksgiving, schedule dinner for the afternoon. If he’s on afternoons, make it early. If he works nights, schedule it around his sleep. If he works Christmas, schedule the family gathering for the nearest off-day before December 25. If you have small kids, they probably won’t know the difference and they’ll still enjoy it.

1 Thessalonians 5:18 says, “In every thing give thanks:  for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.” So make it a point to be thankful. Giving thanks will help you to be content. Thank the Lord for your spouse’s job and willingness to work. Thank Him also for holiday pay, which is usually extra. Thank Him as well for your husband’s health and ability to work.

Your husband’s work schedule with all the functions he misses is tough for him, too; not just you. Determine that by God’s grace, you’ll support him and let the crazy work schedule bring you closer together, not further apart.

Do you know for sure that you will be in heaven when you die? If you don’t but want to know, please click “Helpful Links” on the main menu and then “How Do I Go to Heaven?” on the dropdown.

11/13/2017

Cleveland Baptist Church | 4431 Tiedeman Road, Brooklyn, Ohio 44144 | 216.671.2822

Police Devotion 11-14-2017

“For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope.” (Romans 15:4)

Deuteronomy 10:12-13 says “And now, Israel, what doth the LORD thy God require of thee, but…To keep the commandments of the LORD, and his statutes, which I command thee this day for thy good?” Note the last three words: “FOR THY GOOD.” God gave us the Bible for our benefit, not His.

2 Timothy 3:16 also says, “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness.” The Bible gives us good doctrine so we can discern what’s right doctrine about God and what’s not: “…if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them” (Isaiah 8:20). As 2 Timothy 3:16 also says, the Bible also gives reproof to point out bad conduct, correction for errors, and instruction in righteousness in living.

The Bible also gives believers something else—comfort. God calls Himself “the God of patience and consolation.” “Now the God of patience and consolation grant you to be likeminded one toward another according to Christ Jesus” (Romans 15:5). So He gave the Bible to be a source of comfort for us, “…that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope.”

Also, in the first paragraph, the passage says to “…keep the commandments of the LORD.” That doesn’t just mean “keep” as in “obey,” although it does mean that. It also means “keep” as in “retain.” Proverbs 4:4 and 4:21 say, “…Let thine heart retain my words: keep my commandments, and live.” And “Let them not depart from thine eyes; keep them in the midst of thine heart.” “Keep” also means to retain in your memory, so when some trial or discouragement comes, you can get comfort from God’s Word to help you deal with it: “Wherefore comfort one another with these words” (1 Thessalonians 4:18).

As a cop, you’ve no doubt had bad days because of people on the street, other cops, bosses, politicians, or the media. Even saved cops can expect the same problems other cops face: “…he [God] maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust” (Matthew 5:45).

Unfortunately, what do cops often do for comfort? Drink. Cops, of all people, know that alcohol never helps solve problems. Proverbs 20:1 says, “Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging: and whosoever is deceived thereby is not wise.” Yet they deceive themselves into thinking it’s a good thing when it’s not.

Some may take a ride on a motorcycle for comfort, or work out at the gym, neither of which is sinful. Yet none of these can comfort people’s hearts like God’s Word. Psalm 46:10 says, “Be still, and know that I am God.” Sometimes we need just to stop, open God’s Word, and let Him speak to our hearts.

God knows how to help cops with problems better than anyone else. So if you need comfort, take a little time to open your Bible and let the Lord minister to your heart: “This is my comfort in my affliction: for thy word hath quickened me” (Psalm 119:50). Most importantly, the Bible tells us how to receive Jesus as Saviour and have eternal life: “But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name” (John 20:31). If you have never seen how to have eternal life by receiving Jesus as Saviour, please click “Helpful Links” on the main menu and then “How Do I Go to Heaven?” on the dropdown.

Brian Miller 11/13/2017

Cleveland Baptist Church | 4431 Tiedeman Road, Brooklyn, Ohio 44144 | 216.671.2822 

Police Devotion 11-3-2017

“Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost.” (Romans 15:13)

God is “the God of hope.” The hope He gives is a good hope, a sure hope. He gives us joy and peace as we believe His Word, trusting His Word as truth. Picture a little kid at a third-story window of a burning house. Outside the window beneath him are eight big firefighters holding a safety net, yelling for him to jump. They can catch him and save him, but he has to believe on them, to accept their offer of salvation as truth, trust his life to them, and jump. If he does, he’ll be saved. If he doesn’t, he’ll perish in the flames.

That’s how you come to Jesus. You accept God’s truth that you’ve sinned and are separated from God: “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). And that your sins have condemned you to death and hell: “For the wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23). “And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire” (Revelation 20:14). You also accept that God the Son, Jesus Christ, died on the cross to pay your sin-debt, was buried, and rose again: “…Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures” (1 Corinthians 15:3-4). “Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree” (1 Peter 2:24).

Finally, you come to the risen Jesus, trusting Him entirely (believing) to forgive and save you when you receive Him: “…him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out” (John 6:37). “But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name” (John 1:12). Once you receive Jesus as Saviour, you can accept as truth God’s promise that Jesus has forgiven and saved you: “…He that believeth on me hath everlasting life” (John 6:47). He is God—He cannot lie.

God also has many more promises for believers than that. 2 Peter 1:4 says, “Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises.” Once you know Jesus as Saviour, you have many promises in His Word you can accept as truth. The more you read His Word, the more promises you’ll find to trust and rejoice in; the better you know Jesus and see His love for you, the more your love for Him grows.

More about Jesus in His Word, Holding communion with my Lord, Hearing His voice in every line, making each faithful saying mine. More about Jesus  by Eleiza E. Hewitt, John R. Sweney

You’ll be tempted at times not to believe His Word. For instance, God promised, “…I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee” (Hebrews 13:5). But if things aren’t going well in your life, you may think God has forsaken you. You may neglect your Bible, skip church, and become angry at God. Don’t trust your circumstances—trust God’s promises. God made promises. He meant them. You can trust God’s Word.

Do you feel your faith is weak? That can happen. The remedy to a lack of faith is God’s Word: “So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God” (Romans 10:17). This verse isn’t just for lost people to come to Christ to be saved. It’s also for saved people to grow in their faith.

Have you ever come to Christ, receiving Him as your Saviour? If you want to know more, please click “Helpful Links” on the main menu and then “How Do I Go to Heaven?” on the dropdown.

Brian Miller 11/3/2017

Cleveland Baptist Church | 4431 Tiedeman Road, Brooklyn, Ohio 44144 | 216.671.2822 

Police Devotion 10-24-2017

“Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you.” (James 4:8)

If you’re a cop, life can be busy. There’s your job, part-time job(s), court, and family. For a Christian on the job, it can be easy to let personal devotion time—Bible reading and prayer—go by the wayside. In a way, it’s like exercise. You know you need to exercise, but you work crazy shifts and often go into overtime. You may go from your regular job to your part-time job. By the time you get home, all you want to do is peel off the 15-20 pounds of gear you’ve been wearing for hours, shower, and crash. It’s easy to get out of the habit of working out and into the habit of eating the wrong stuff and too much of it. So you have to make a conscious effort at regular exercise, but it’s worth the effort.

So it is with personal devotion time. You can find time to do it because there’s always time for what is important. However, you will probably need to re-order your priorities a bit. You have to decide on purpose to spend time with God in His Word and prayer. Our Scripture says, “Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you.” So as believers, we can chose to draw near to God and enjoy a close fellowship with Him or chose not to. God wants us to enjoy fellowship with Him, and He with us. That’s why the verse is there.  

You draw near to God by reading His Word.  But don’t just flip open your Bible and glaze over some verses carelessly. Read it expecting the Lord to speak to your heart. Pray like the psalmist said in Psalm 119:18: “Open thou mine eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of thy law.” Here’s an illustration: if you’re a parent, you want your kids to obey you, but you should also want the affection of their hearts. Don’t just give orders and criticize all the time: “Clean your room, ” “Get off the phone,” “Don’t give me an attitude.” You need to correct them at times, but you also need to encourage them with words of care, guidance, and love. Isn’t it awful, by the way, to be at a call and hear parents yell and swear at their young kids? That’s a good way to lose a kid’s heart. Colossians 3:21 is in the Bible for a reason: “Fathers [and by logical implication, mothers], provoke not your children to anger, lest they be discouraged.”

God also wants to have the hearts of His children: “My son, give me thine heart,” (Proverbs 23:26). So His Word isn’t just a set of “Thou shalts” and “Thou shalt nots.” Yes, the Bible has commands, but it also has words of hope, wisdom, instruction, and encouragement. Psalm 19:7-8 says, “The law of the LORD is perfect, converting the soul: the testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple. The statutes of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart: the commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes.” When you have down time at work, which does happen, open your Bible. You make better use of time, and if another cop sees you reading the Bible, God can use it as an opening to talk with him about Jesus.

Prayer is also an important part of “drawing nigh to God.” 1 Peter 5:6-7 says, “Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time: Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.” Do you have cares as a cop? Things that bother you about the job, or about the department where you work? How about your family? All of us have cares. If you know Jesus as Saviour, don’t just fret about your cares. Cast them on God in prayer, “…for he careth for you.”

Do you have a relationship with God to begin with? Have you received Jesus Christ as your personal Saviour? If you’re not sure, please click “Helpful Links” on the main menu and then “How Do I Go to Heaven?” on the dropdown.

Brian Miller 10/24/2017

Cleveland Baptist Church | 4431 Tiedeman Road, Brooklyn, Ohio 44144 | 216.671.2822

Police Devotion 10-11-2017

“Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith” (Hebrews 12:1-2).

The author of Hebrews encourages readers who know Jesus as Saviour to live for Christ, to “…run with patience the race that is set before us.” He talks about “…so great a cloud of witnesses.” He’s talking about the people of faith mentioned in Chapter 11 from Abel to the prophets. He talks of how they lived and died victoriously by faith in the Lord. These people are witnesses by their lives; as God gave them grace to live for Him, even in tough circumstances, He can also do the same for us.

This passage gives us four points about serving Christ. First, it says to “…lay aside every weight.” A weight is something that may not be a sin but can waste time and energy if you spend too much time on it. Do you spend a lot of time chatting on Facebook, surfing the internet, or watching TV? Is anything more meaningful than serving the Lord, sharing Christ with people, or reading His Word?

The author also says to lay aside “…the sin which doth so easily beset us.” That’s talking about things we know are sinful. I John 1:8 says, “If WE say that WE have no sin, WE deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in US” [capitals added]. Even saved people struggle with sin. That doesn’t mean that we may as well just enjoy it. No. I John 1:9 says, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” If you struggle in a certain area of sin, find Bible verses that deal it. For example, if you’re tempted, with pornography or other things you shouldn’t see or hear, Psalm 101:3 is a great verse to think on:  “I will set no wicked thing before mine eyes.” As you think on verses about a sin you struggle with, God uses His Word to convict your heart and help you cleanse it out of your life.

The author also says to “…run with patience the race that is set before us.” Receiving Jesus as Saviour is the best decision you’ll ever make, but living for the Lord isn’t always easy. Days will come when you don’t feel like going to church, reading your Bible, serving the Lord, or praying. You may not think it’s doing any good. Be patient. Don’t quit. Look for help in God’s Word. If you’re discouraged, tell the Lord exactly how you feel. He already knows anyway: “…pour out your heart before him” (Psalm 62:8).

Finally, be “Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith.” Keep your focus on Jesus. He’s the One who died for your sins, was buried, and rose again. He’s the One you received as Saviour, who said, “…I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee” (Hebrews 13:5). Don’t quit on Jesus because of a fallout with another believer. You’d trusted Jesus to save your soul. Trust Him also to guide you in life and into eternity: “Thou shalt guide me with thy counsel, and afterward receive me to glory” (Psalm 73:24).

Spend time often in His Word to get His counsel to guide you. Call on Him often in prayer. Obey Him. Tell others about Him. Doing these thing will help you keep your focus on Him. You won’t be perfect—neither were the people in Hebrews 11—but you’ll see, by God’s grace, how you can live joyfully for Him.

Have you ever been born again by receiving Jesus as your personal Saviour, trusting entirely in Him to forgive you your sins and get you to heaven? If you haven’t but want to know how to do that, please click “Helpful Links” on the main menu and then “How Do I Go to Heaven?” on the dropdown.

Brian Miller 10/11/2017

Cleveland Baptist Church | 4431 Tiedeman Road, Brooklyn, Ohio 44144 | 216.671.2822

Police Devotion 10-3-2017

“And when he [Jesus] was departed thence, he went into their synagogue: And, behold, there was a man which had his hand withered. And they asked him, saying, Is it lawful to heal on the sabbath days? that they might accuse him. And he said unto them, What man shall there be among you, that shall have one sheep, and if it fall into a pit on the sabbath day, will he not lay hold on it, and lift it out? How much then is a man better than a sheep? Wherefore it is lawful to do well on the sabbath days. Then saith he to the man, Stretch forth thine hand. And he stretched it forth; and it was restored whole, like as the other. Then the Pharisees went out, and held a council against him, how they might destroy him.” (Matthew 12:9-14)

The Pharisees were part of the religious ruling class. They didn’t teach God’s Word and had an iron grip on the people. Then Jesus came along. He exposed their hypocrisy publicly and often. He told them things like, Ye are of your father the devil (John 8:44), and “…ye are not of God (John 8:47). He told people the truth about God when the Pharisees didn’t. Some of the Pharisees were honest enough to admit that He was come from God, but plenty of the Pharisees hated Him and wanted Him destroyed.

One common accusation against Jesus was that He broke the Sabbath. Old Testament law prohibited working on the Sabbath. They considered healing to be work. When Jesus healed on the Sabbath, He broke Jewish law which proved that He was not of God. Of course, the main purpose of Jesus’ Pharisee enemies was not to preach pure Jewish law but to destroy Jesus. That’s why they asked if it was lawful to heal on the Sabbath day, “…THAT THEY MIGHT ACCUSE HIM.” [capitals added]

Jesus replied that if a man had a sheep and it fell into a pit on the Sabbath, wouldn’t he get it out right away? And aren’t people more important than sheep? By the way, if you know any “animal rights” types who think animals are equal to humans, you could show them this passage.

Jesus never committed sin of any kind. 1 Peter 2:22 says Jesus “…did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth.” Now the penalty for sin is death and hell: “For the wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23). “And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire” (Revelation 20:14). Jesus didn’t owe that penalty—because He’d never sinned. We do owe that penalty because we’ve sinned. Yet He loved us and took our death penalty for us: “But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8). Jesus’ death paid our sin-debt completely. That’s why He said, It is finished (John 19:30) before He died. Then He rose again and is alive today! I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen (Revelation 1:18).

As a cop, you know that even law-abiding people don’t keep the law perfectly. You also know that cops don’t enforce the law perfectly. People also don’t keep God’s law perfectly. God didn’t give us the law so we can be saved by keeping it—because we can’t keep it. God gave us the law to show us our sin and our need for Jesus as Saviour: “Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin” (Romans 3:20). The law shows us our sin and points us to Christ, “Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree” (1 Peter 2:24).

You may believe in the God of the Bible and know about Jesus as the Saviour, but do you know for sure that you’ll be in heaven at the end of your life? If you don’t know for sure but you want to, click “Helpful Links” on the main menu and then “How Do I Go to Heaven?” on the dropdown.

Brian Miller 10/3/2017

Cleveland Baptist Church | 4431 Tiedeman Road, Brooklyn, Ohio 44144 | 216.671.2822

 

 

Police Devotion 9-21-2017

“Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden? And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden: But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch, lest ye die. And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die: For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.  And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat” (Genesis 3:1-6).

See the last part of the passage? It doesn’t say, “And when the woman thought of God’s command not to eat the fruit, she took…and did eat.” It also doesn’t say, “And when the woman thought of God’s warning that she would die, she took…and did eat.” That’s because Eve wasn’t focused on God’s command or His warning, but rather was focused on enjoying the fruit. Satan convinced her to doubt God’s Word: “Yea, hath God said?” He also got her to think she might escape the consequences of sin: “Ye shall not SURELY [capitals added] die” and to focus on the pleasure of the act. She and Adam ate, and the rest is history. Hebrews 11:25 talks of “the pleasures of sin FOR A SEASON [capitals added].” Sin has its pleasure, but it also has its price.

The story of Adam and Eve is true. Jesus said, “…he which made them at the beginning made them male and female” (Matthew 19:4). We see in this story how we inherited a nature to sin from Adam and Eve. We also see how Satan tempts—he strives to take our focus off God and off possible consequences, and focus on pleasure. This plan still works. Did you ever say a harsh word, then right away regret what you’d said? However, it was too late. Even if you apologized, you couldn’t take back what you said. Words really can hurt. Proverbs 12:18 says, “There is that speaketh like the piercings of a sword.” You thought about how you wanted to “let him (or her) have it,” and you didn’t think about God or about consequences.

Here’s another way temptation works. When two young singles want sex, do they think of God or of possible consequences? Not likely. They see and hear about the pleasure of sex from TV, movies, and music. The entertainment industry promotes it because it sells. The fact that the devil uses entertainment like that to promote sin is obviously irrelevant. If consequences come, like sexually-transmitted diseases, out-of-wedlock kids, lack of education, and welfare dependency, those in the entertainment world can be like the chief priests and elders when Judas Iscariot confessed to betraying Jesus. They can say, “What is that to us? see thou to that” (Matthew 27:4). Or to put it another way, “That’s your problem, not ours.”

Drunk drivers, drug dealers, robbers, and other criminals don’t focus on God’s will or on the ruin their sin can bring to innocent people, their loved ones, and even themselves. They focus on pleasure, and play right into Satan’s hand. His temptation is simple, yet so effective in destroying people’s souls. James 4:7 tells believers in Christ, “Resist the devil, and he will flee from you” (James 4:7).

One way to resist the devil is to fill your mind with Scripture. “Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee” (Psalm 119:11). Find Scriptures that deal with weak areas of your life. When you’re tempted in these areas, think on those Scriptures, ask the Lord to help you, and trust Him to do it—“my heart trusted in him, and I am helped” (Psalm 28:7).

Are you sure you’ll get to heaven? If not, please click “Helpful Links” on the main menu and then “How Do I Go to Heaven?” on the dropdown.

Brian Miller 9/21/2017

Cleveland Baptist Church | 4431 Tiedeman Road, Brooklyn, Ohio 44144 | 216.671.2822