Police Devotion 6-19-2018

“Who is left among you that saw this house in her first glory? and how do ye see it now? is it not in your eyes in comparison of it as nothing? Yet now be strong, O Zerubbabel, saith the LORD; and be strong, O Joshua, son of Josedech, the high priest; and be strong, all ye people of the land, saith the LORD, and work: for I am with you, saith the LORD of hosts:” (Haggai 2:3-4)

Here is a little background on this passage. God let the Babylonians take Judah into captivity for their continual sin against God. The Babylonians destroyed Jerusalem and the Temple. This captivity lasted seventy years. Eventually, the Babylonians were defeated by the Medes and Persians. Cyrus, the Persian king, let the Jews return to their homeland and rebuild the Temple.

At the time of this writing, the Jews had just laid the foundation of the new Temple. According to the passage, Zerubbabel was the governor of Judah. Joshua (not the Joshua who led the Israelites after Moses) was the high priest. When the foundation of the post-captivity Temple was laid, many older Jews were there who’d seen the previous Temple that King Solomon had built. According to Ezra 3:12, “…when the foundation of this house [the post-captivity Temple] was laid before their eyes,” many of the older Jews “… wept with a loud voice.”

Why did they cry? Verse 3 of the passage gives a clue: “Who is left among you that saw this house in her first glory? and how do ye see it now? is it not in your eyes in comparison of it as nothing?” Maybe they were sad that the new Temple wouldn’t be as splendid as the old one. Yet God assured them that no matter the size of the Temple, they still had Him: “…be strong, all ye people of the land, saith the LORD, and work: for I am with you, saith the LORD of hosts.” It was a new time, but God was still God.

Here’s the application: if you have, say, twenty or more years as a cop, you may be like the older Jews, in a way. You remember how the job was “when you were allowed to do police work,” and how it is now with all the restrictions, micromanagement, and toxic media. You may be discouraged at how cops aren’t able to do what they could before, and how criminals take advantage, and decent people in bad neighborhoods suffer (a fact which many people in power and set policy just can’t seem to get).

So what do you do? Quit? Let criminals run the streets? Better not. Restrictions or not, you may be the only defense these citizens have; you know it, and they know it. So do your best work and encourage younger officers to do their best, as well. Things aren’t like they were, but God is still on His throne. Police work is still a job that He ordained, no matter what anyone says to the contrary. If people in power set bad policy or generate a toxic environment for cops and decent people, that’s their sin, not yours.

Likewise, if you’re a Christian, don’t just lament about how bad things are nowadays. Jesus Christ still forgives sins, saves souls, and changes lives. The Bible is still true. God still answers prayer. The Great Commission is still in effect. God meant it when He said, “…I am with you, saith the LORD of hosts.” Trust His Word, share His gospel, and “…be strong, all ye people of the land, saith the LORD, and work.”

If you want to see in the Bible how to be sure of forgiveness for your sins and have eternal life by receiving Jesus Christ as your personal Saviour, please click “Helpful Links” on the top menu and then “How Do I Go to Heaven?” on the dropdown menu.

Brian Miller 6/19/2018

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

Police Devotion 4-20-2018

“Then Moses heard the people weep throughout their families, every man in the door of his tent: and the anger of the LORD was kindled greatly; Moses also was displeased.  And Moses said unto the LORD, Wherefore hast thou afflicted thy servant? and wherefore have I not found favour in thy sight, that thou layest the burden of all this people upon me? Have I conceived all this people? have I begotten them, that thou shouldest say unto me, Carry them in thy bosom, as a nursing father beareth the sucking child, unto the land which thou swarest unto their fathers? Whence should I have flesh to give unto all this people? for they weep unto me, saying, Give us flesh, that we may eat. I am not able to bear all this people alone, because it is too heavy for me. And if thou deal thus with me, kill me, I pray thee, out of hand, if I have found favour in thy sight; and let me not see my wretchedness. And the LORD said unto Moses, Gather unto me seventy men of the elders of Israel, whom thou knowest to be the elders of the people, and officers over them; and bring them unto the tabernacle of the congregation, that they may stand there with thee. And I will come down and talk with thee there: and I will take of the spirit which is upon thee, and will put it upon them; and they shall bear the burden of the people with thee, that thou bear it not thyself alone.” (Numbers 11:10-17)

As you can see, Moses was stressed out from the grief the Israelites gave him. They were complaining about the manna that God had provided. They said, “We remember the fish, which we did eat in Egypt freely; the cucumbers, and the melons, and the leeks, and the onions, and the garlick: But now our soul is dried away: there is nothing at all, beside this manna, before our eyes” (Numbers 11:5-6).

Did they really talk about how nice it was in Egypt? Had they forgotten the cruel bondage? How Pharaoh had their sons thrown into the river to drown or be eaten by crocodiles? “And Pharaoh charged all his people, saying, Every son that is born ye shall cast into the river, and every daughter ye shall save alive” (Exodus 1:22). Had they forgotten the plagues that God put on Egypt, sparing Israel? And how God destroyed Pharaoh and the mighty Egyptian army in the Red Sea? “…and Israel saw the Egyptians dead upon the sea shore” (Exodus 14:30).

Two lessons from the passage: first, don’t whine. Most of us are tempted to whine at some point. As a cop, you may be tempted to whine about the job because things aren’t perfect—they never are. But whining rarely does any good. If you’ve ever worked a tour of patrol duty with a whiny partner, you know how awful it is. Whining is also a bad testimony for Christ. If you know Jesus as Saviour but are tempted to whine, think instead of how the Lord brought you to Himself, and of things He’s done for you. As the Johnson Oatman hymn, says to do, count your blessings: “Count your blessings, name them one by one; Count your blessings, see what God hath done.”

Second, when something’s bothering you, pray and give God details. As Psalm 62:8 says, “…pour out your heart before him.” Look how much detail Moses put into his prayer. God knew what Moses needed, but He met Moses’ need when Moses prayed. Do you have problems you’re trying to work out? Before you do anything else, pray and give God details and ask for help.

If you’ve never seen in the Bible how to have eternal life by receiving Jesus Christ as your personal Saviour, please click “Helpful Links” on the main menu and then “How Do I Go to Heaven?” on the dropdown menu.

Brian Miller 4/20/2018

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

Police Devotion 4-12-2018

“Now Peter and John went up together into the temple at the hour of prayer, being the ninth hour. And a certain man lame from his mother’s womb was carried, whom they laid daily at the gate of the temple which is called Beautiful, to ask alms of them that entered into the temple; Who, seeing Peter and John about to go into the temple, asked an alms. And Peter, fastening his eyes upon him with John, said, Look on us. And he gave heed unto them, expecting to receive something of them. Then Peter said, Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk. And he took him by the right hand, and lifted him up: and immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength. And he leaping up stood, and walked, and entered with them into the temple, walking, and leaping, and praising God” (Acts 3:1-8).

Why did this handicapped man sit at the temple gate? Why not in the marketplace or another busy area?  Maybe he had faith in God. Or maybe he sat there because he knew people who believed in God would pass by him and out of fear of God and faith, they’d be moved to give him a donation.

People who ask for money may offer any number of stories. One man said he was a veteran of “Recon Special Forces Marine Corps.” Sounds impressive, except that Special Forces is in the Army, not the Marine Corps. A guy may tell you that his car broke down or it ran out of gas a mile away. Or maybe it is some other story that’s conveniently difficult to check. A man at the highway exit may hold a cardboard sign that says something like, “HOMELESS. PLEASE HELP. GOD BLESS.” Why put “GOD BLESS” on the sign? Does he really have faith in God, or does he think the phrase will improve his chances for a donation? Are these people legit, mentally ill, or just trying to get money for alcohol or drugs?

We don’t know and probably won’t take the time to find out. We do know that God loves them, that the Lord Jesus’ death paid for their sins, as well as ours, and that they’ll all go into eternity one day. So don’t just look on them with disdain, because “…there is no respect of persons with God” (Romans 2:11). Ever hear the saying, “There but for the grace of God go I?” If you’re saved, give him a gospel tract along with whatever you choose to give. If your church gives out food, tell him. God said that when His Word goes out, “…it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it” (Isaiah 55:11). Any effort to reach people for the gospel’s sake, no matter who they are, is never a waste of time: “…your labour is not in vain in the Lord” (1 Corinthians 15:58).

The biggest miracle for the man at the gate was not that he stood up and walked. The biggest miracle was that he trusted Jesus Christ as his personal Saviour, as evidenced by the fact that he “…entered with them into the temple, walking, and leaping, and praising God.” People were amazed to see this lame man walking. Peter told them, “And his [Jesus’] name through faith in his name hath made this man strong” (Acts 3:16). Peter explained to them that God used this miracle of healing to show them their personal need for the miracle of forgiveness of sin and salvation. “Unto you first God, having raised up his Son Jesus, sent him to bless you, in turning away every one of you from his iniquities” (Acts 3:26).

You may be perfectly healthy and not need a miracle of healing, but if you haven’t trusted in the Lord Jesus as your personal Saviour, you need the miracle of salvation. If you want to see in the Bible how to receive Jesus Christ as your personal Saviour, please click “Helpful Links” on the main menu and then “How Do I Go to Heaven?” on the dropdown menu.

Brian Miller 4/12/2018

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

 

 

 

Police Devotion 3-15-2018

“Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.” (Mark 16:15)

What’s the most dangerous job for a cop? Not the most dangerous assignment, as in patrol, SWAT, or Vice, but the most dangerous JOB? Many assignments can be dangerous, but the most dangerous JOB is actually confronting a subject. Whether you’re in patrol, traffic, Vice, SWAT, or anywhere else, you’re most likely to be wounded or killed confronting a subject. As long as violent criminals are willing to prey on innocent citizens, police work will always be dangerous, and the most dangerous part of the job will always be confronting a subject.  

But someone has to do it. The mice may all agree that a bell should be put on the cat, but someone has to do the dirty work. On a raid or “shots fired” call, you have some prior danger indicators, but on a traffic stop, for instance, you may not. When you approach a subject, you don’t know his intentions. He may go easy. He may not. He may be acting smooth, looking for an opening to attack. He may be young, strong, and a better fighter than you. He may not have a gun, until he grabs yours. Now he has one, and you don’t.  

When you confront subjects, you’re acting on behalf of innocent citizens. Without you, most of them would be at the mercy of thugs, which is what thugs want. So you have to confront subjects and take the risk. When you’re proactive in confronting subjects, though, it’s exciting because you’re doing something important that’s bigger than you—helping decent people against predators.

Now look at our opening verse. The Lord Jesus gave this command—often called the Great Commission—to His believers: “Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.” In other words, go tell people about Jesus and how they can receive Him as Saviour. Everywhere you go, tell people about Jesus.

Telling people about Jesus is the most important job of a Christian because people are not going to be forgiven for their sins and saved unless someone tells them about Jesus: “How then shall they call on him [Jesus] 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?” (Romans 10:14). In a way, though, it can also be scary—not dangerous scary, but uncertain scary. When you talk with someone about how he needs Jesus as Saviour, you don’t know how he’ll react. But it’s like confronting criminal subjects. You have to do it.

Even if someone is not receptive at first, you plant a seed in his heart by telling him about Jesus: “I have planted, Apollos watered;” (1 Corinthians 3:6). Or he may be ready to hear how to be saved. The greatest thing in the world is to share Christ with a sinner, he receives Jesus as Saviour, and his name is now “written in heaven” (Luke 10:20). Also, “there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner that repenteth” (Luke 15:10). And you rejoice that God has let you have a part in it.

When you go to a Bible-believing, soul-winning church and you’re active in sharing the gospel, you’re also part of something much bigger than you, but it’s far more important than arresting criminals. You’re “labourers together with God” (1 Corinthians 3:9) in reaching precious souls with the gospel.

If you’ve never seen in the Bible how to have eternal life by receiving Jesus as your personal Saviour, please click, “Helpful Links” on the top menu and then “How Do I Go to Heaven?” on the dropdown menu.

Brian Miller 3/15/2018

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

 

 

 

Police Devotion 3-6-2018

“And he [Jesus] spake this parable unto certain which trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others: Two men went up into the temple to pray; the one a Pharisee, and the other a publican. The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank thee, that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican. I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess. And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner. I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.” (Luke 18:9-14)

The Pharisees were a Jewish religious sect during Jesus’ days on earth. Their religion was a big show. Jesus said of them in Matthew 23:5: “But all their works they do for to be seen of men.”

The Pharisees didn’t care about people. They even said, “But this people who knoweth not the law are cursed” (John 7:49). How would you like to hear a clergyman say something like that? The Pharisees also weren’t close to God at all. In our passage, Jesus said the Pharisee “prayed thus with himself,” (boldface added); not with God. God wasn’t listening. On another occasion, some Pharisees started a confrontation with Jesus. He told them, “Ye are of your father the devil,” (John 8:44) and “ye are not of God” (John 8:47).

Look at the Pharisee’s prayer. He bragged about how he was better than others, and about the religious works he did. James 4:6 says, “God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble.” Pride is wicked before God, including religious pride. One day, “as Jesus sat at meat in the house, behold, many publicans and sinners came and sat down with him and his disciples. And when the Pharisees saw it, they said unto his disciples, Why eateth your Master with publicans and sinners?” (Matthew 9:10-11). It was like, “How can you sit with those people?” Pride shows itself with an unkind attitude toward people. The Pharisees “trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others.”

Jesus answered, “They that be whole need not a physician, but they that are sick. But go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance” (Matthew 9:12-13). Jesus came to earth to call sinners to repent and come to Him to be forgiven and saved. He promised, “him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out” (John 6:37).

That’s what the publican in our passage did. He saw that he was a sinner with no other hope but God’s mercy. He went to God for mercy and was saved. He “went down to his house justified rather than the other.” That’s how you come to Jesus: as a repentant sinner with nothing to bargain with. Forget the fact that you go to church, or you’re a cop, or you’ve done kind deeds. Don’t depend on your works like the Pharisee did. Good deeds didn’t pay your sin debt. Jesus’ death paid your sin debt. His resurrection is proof of that fact. That’s why Easter, also known as Resurrection Sunday, is so wonderful.

If you’ve never come to Jesus, trusting entirely in Him to forgive and save you, please do. If you want to see more about how to have forgiveness of sins and eternal life by trusting on Jesus as your personal Saviour, please click, “Helpful Links” on the top menu and then “How Do I Go to Heaven?” on the dropdown menu.

Brian Miller 3/6/2018

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

 

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