Saturday, May 19, 2018

Can a Camel Get Through an Eye of a Needle?


Jesus said, "It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God." (Matt. 19:24). A camel was the largest animal in Israel and a needle had the smallest opening. People in that day believed that a rich person was the most likely to make it into heaven. By combining these three things, Jesus created a totally impossible situation. The disciples were stunned in disbelief and said, “Then WHO can be saved?” (19:25).

Theologians over the centuries have tried to change the meaning of the text, trying to turn the impossible into the possible.  
In the 5th century, a person copying manuscripts changed the word "camel" (which is kamelon in Greek) to kamilon, meaning a rope or cable. The problem is, you can’t get a cable through the eye of a needle either. I have a hard time getting a thread through one.

In the 15th century, the opposite was tried—to enlarge the needle’s eye. Someone came up with the idea that the "eye of the needle" wasn't really a needle after all, but a small gate entrance to a city. According to this theory, the camel had to leave its load and crawl on its knees to get through the gate. Apparently when the architect designed the gates he forgot about all the camels needing to get inside the city!

But that theory isn’t correct either. Luke, who was a physician (see Col. 4:14), used the Greek word in Luke 18:25 for a surgeon's needle proving it was not a small gate. Jesus was literally talking about that big, lumpy animal going through a tiny, little hole.

What’s the point of Jesus' teaching? No one, whether rich or poor, is going to enter into heaven without God doing a miracle to get him or her there. A camel can go through the eye of a needle if it’s passed molecule by molecule through the eye and reassembled on the other side. Jesus said, “With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible” (Matt. 19:26), meaning ONLY GOD can get you there.

All you can do is realize how impossible it is to get into heaven and call out to God to save you. You can pray, “Lord, I can’t do anything to get myself into heaven but I believe you can get me there. Jesus, I believe you died for my sins so I can be forgiven. Come into my heart and save me. I give you my life.” If you sincerely prayed that prayer, the camel just went through the eye of the needle.  www.kentcrockett.blogspot.com  www.makinglifecount.net

Receive these devotionals (free) by email: You can subscribe in the box on the right at www.kentcrockett.blogspot.com (Your email will not be given out. You’ll receive an email when the new devotional is posted)

Making Life Count Ministries
P.O. Box 680174
Prattville, Alabama 36068-0174
www.makinglifecount.net  Twitter: @KentCrockett

Saturday, May 12, 2018

How Does God Feed Every Bird in the World?

Do you worry about how God will provide your needs? As Jesus was preaching the Sermon on the Mount, He looked at the faces in the crowd and could read their minds. They were worried about starving. They didn’t have refrigerators, canned food, or grocery stores like today. Most people didn’t know where their next meal was coming from. Then Jesus pointed in the air and said, “Look at those birds…Your heavenly Father feeds them.” (Matt. 6:26a)

Really? Did you just say that God takes responsibility for feeding every bird in the entire world? I’ve never seen a gigantic hand coming down from heaven, opening the beaks of every bird and dropping in worms. If He doesn’t feed them like that, how does He do it? He feeds the birds by guiding them to their food supply whether it’s worms, seeds, or bugs.

Jesus then applied this object lesson to everyone listening, hoping they would make the connection. “You are worth more than birds” (Matt. 6:26b). If the Lord feeds birds, won’t He also take care of His children?

Consider for a moment who’s instructing us not to worry. The Son of God—and it’s impossible for Him to lie. His reputation is at stake. But Jesus isn’t just telling everyone in the crowd not to worry. He’s also speaking to everyone who would be reading His words in the Bible. Jesus knew His words would be recorded in the Scriptures for people living in the future to read.

He knows what you need and how to get the provision to you—on one condition. He said, “But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness and all these things will be added to you.” If you’ll seek the Lord as your highest priority, you’ll never have to worry about your needs being met. When trust and follow the Lord, He promises to provide food and everything else you need. (The Sure Cure for Worry, pp.195-196) www.kentcrockett.blogspot.com www.makinglifecount.net ****************************************************************************************************

Receive these devotionals (free) by email: You can subscribe in the box on the right at www.kentcrockett.blogspot.com (Your email will not be given out. You’ll receive an email when the new devotional is posted)

Making Life Count Ministries
P.O. Box 680174
Prattville, Alabama 36068-0174
www.makinglifecount.net  Twitter: @KentCrockett    

Saturday, May 5, 2018

A Very Puzzling Parable


Jesus told a parable about a man who was thrown into hell for wearing the wrong clothes! In Matthew 22:2-14, a king gave a wedding feast to honor his son. In this parable, the king is God the Father and the son is Jesus. In those days, two invitations were sent out. The first invitation let the person know they were invited to the event. The second invitation announced the feast was ready. 

The king sent his servants out with the second invitation to let his invited guests know it was time to come to the meal. Instead of joyfully responding, the invited guests ignored the invitation. So the king decided to open up the feast to everyone.

He sent his servants out on the streets to invite strangers to the wedding feast for his son. This was unheard of!  Kings only invited prestigious people to events like this but this king invited everyone--including evil people (Matt. 22:10). Thieves, murderers, and prostitutes were invited to the feast to honor his son. This shows that God loves everyone and wants every person to be saved, no matter how evil they may be.

As the king was looking at the wedding hall filled with the guests who accepted his invitation, he spots a man who isn't dressed in wedding clothes. He asked him why he wasn't dressed appropriately. The man couldn't give an answer, so the king throws him into hell!  Now you're scratching your head, trying to figure out why he would do that.

In those days when a wedding was held, the host bought a wedding garment for each person to wear.  It was a free gift to the invited guests.  All the person had to do was put it on, which showed honor and respect for the person being married.  This man had no excuse because he refused the free gift from the king.  The interpretation is the wedding garment was "the robe of righteousness" (Isaiah 61:10). 

The man was at the feast just to get the free food and had no interest in honoring the son. Many people today want to go to heaven to get the free food but have no interest in living for the Lord in this life. On Judgment Day, they will be like the man who refused to wear the wedding garment.

God is inviting you to spend eternity with Him, but you must accept the invitation and receive the robe of righteousness.  Will you be at the wedding in the next life?
              CLICK HERE to read the entire sermon on this parable.  

****************************************************************************************************
Receive these devotionals (free) by email: You can subscribe in the box on the right at www.kentcrockett.blogspot.com (Your email will not be given out. You’ll receive an email when the new devotional is posted)

Making Life Count Ministries
P.O. Box 680174
Prattville, Alabama 36068-0174
www.makinglifecount.net  Twitter: @KentCrockett

Saturday, April 28, 2018

You're Scheduled for Surgery


A surgeon named Dr. Kane searched for a candidate to undergo surgery so he could prove that appendectomies could be done under local anesthetic. At last, a patient was found. He was prepared for surgery and wheeled into the operating room. A local anesthetic was applied, leaving the patient able to talk and respond as the surgery progressed.

As he had done hundreds of times, Dr. Kane located the appendix, skillfully removed it, and finished the surgery. During the operation, the patient complained only of minor discomfort. He recovered quickly and was dismissed two days later. Dr. Kane demonstrated that local anesthesia was a viable alternative, thanks to the willingness of a brave volunteer.

What I didn’t tell you was that the volunteer for surgery by Dr. Kane—was Dr. Kane. He performed surgery on himself and removed his own appendix! (The Voice of the Village, July/August 1996)

What attitude needs to be removed from you? Bitterness? Self-pity? You’re the patient—and but you’re also the doctor. Ephesians 4:31 says, “All bitterness, anger and wrath, shouting and slander must be removed from you." The only way to remove harmful attitudes is by performing self-surgery. You’re the only one who can do it.

Many people never change because they keep putting off the operation. So now you’re scheduled for surgery—to remove bitterness (or any other attitude) from your heart.
PRAY: "Lord, I choose to forgive (name the person) who hurt me. Forgive me for refusing to forgive. Right now, I am removing this cancer from my heart. I choose to let it go and move on with my life. Thank you for replacing the turmoil in my heart with peace."  www.kentcrockett.blogspot.com www.makinglifecount.net ****************************************************************************************************

Receive these devotionals (free) by email: You can subscribe in the box on the right at www.kentcrockett.blogspot.com (Your email will not be given out. You’ll receive an email when the new devotional is posted)

Making Life Count Ministries
P.O. Box 680174
Prattville, Alabama 36068-0174
www.makinglifecount.net  Twitter: @KentCrockett

Saturday, April 21, 2018

Not "HOW" but "WHO"


One of the greatest hindrances to faith is trying to figure out HOW God will answer your prayers. Quit asking yourself “HOW is this possible? HOW will God provide for me?” HOW does God perform miracles?” We think if God will simply explain everything to us ahead of time that it will increase our faith. It won’t.

When a blind man begged Jesus to give him sight, he didn’t ask Him to explain HOW He would do it: “Before you heal me, could you please tell me HOW you’re going to fix my eyes? It’s a problem with my optic nerve, isn’t it? Since you don’t have a scalpel, HOW will you get inside my head to perform surgery?”

Jesus didn’t reply, “Those are great questions that deserve an explanation. Here’s exactly how I plan to do the miracle and restore your sight…” Of course, Jesus never explained how He did miracles. He doesn’t want us concentrating on HOW our prayer will be answered but on WHO is able to bring it to pass.

When the angel Gabriel told the virgin Mary she would be pregnant with the Son of God, Mary asked, “HOW can this be, since I am a virgin?” Instead of explaining HOW, Gabriel answered WHO. “The Holy Spirit will come upon you and the power of the Most High will overshadow you” (Luke 1:34-35). (If God Knows What I Need, Why Should I Pray? p.37,41).

So if you’ll stop asking HOW God will answer your prayer, and instead focus on WHO has the ability to do the impossible, you’ll experience peace as you learn to trust Him.  www.kentcrockett.blogspot.com www.makinglifecount.net ****************************************************************************************************

Receive these devotionals (free) by email: You can subscribe in the box on the right at www.kentcrockett.blogspot.com (Your email will not be given out. You’ll receive an email when the new devotional is posted)

Making Life Count Ministries
P.O. Box 680174
Prattville, Alabama 36068-0174
www.makinglifecount.net  Twitter: @KentCrockett

Saturday, April 14, 2018

No More Than You Can Handle


A friend of mine was helping unload a moving truck. He was inside the truck handing out heavy boxes for men to carry to the house. My friend’s four-year-old grandson saw what they were doing and wanted to help. He couldn’t give the boy heavy objects, so he handed him little boxes to carry. He knew how much the boy could handle and wouldn't give him more than he could carryGod knows our limits and won’t give us more than we can handle. 

Here are three ways that He keeps burdens from being too great to bear.
1. God won’t reveal more than you need to know. Although you might think you’d like to see your entire future, you would live in dread of the upcoming trials if you knew they were coming. Jesus said, “I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now” (John 16:12). He gives information on a “need to know” basis. Life is a cinch by the inch but hard by the yard.

2. God sets limits on your trials. Just as bridges have a load limit, God places a “load limit” on our trials. “No temptation (Greek-"test") has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted ("tested”) beyond what you are able” (1 Cor. 10:13). God’s not going test us with more than we can bear.

3. God will give you the strength and wisdom to get through your problem. When Paul went through his “thorn in the flesh” difficulty, God told him, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is perfected in weakness” (2 Cor. 12:9). When we depend on God’s grace rather than our own human power, we will experience strength from God to get through the problem.

God may allow you to go the edge so you can experience His power, but He will never allow you to go over the edge. www.kentcrockett.blogspot.com www.makinglifecount.net ****************************************************************************************************

Receive these devotionals (free) by email: You can subscribe in the box on the right at www.kentcrockett.blogspot.com (Your email will not be given out. You’ll receive an email when the new devotional is posted)

Making Life Count Ministries
P.O. Box 680174
Prattville, Alabama 36068-0174
www.makinglifecount.net  Twitter: @KentCrockett

Saturday, April 7, 2018

Check Your Motives


When detectives try to solve a murder they ask themselves, "Who had a motive for doing this?" Was it someone who would inherit a fortune? (Greed) Was it a person who had something to hide and wanted to keep the victim quiet? (Felt threatened) Was it someone who was wronged by the victim? (Revenge) Was it a rejected lover? (Jealousy) Figure out the motive and you'll narrow down the list of suspects.

Motives lead to actions, although actions don’t always reveal motives. Proverbs 16:2 says, "All the ways of a man are clean in his own sight but the Lord weighs the motives." Jesus specifically instructed us how to correctly give offerings, fast, and pray to keep our motives in check (Matt. 6:1-6, 16-18). The Lord looks past our outward deeds to see why we’re doing it.

On the Day of Judgment, He “will bring to light the things hidden in the darkness and disclose the motives of men’s hearts, and then each man’s praise will come to him from God” (1 Cor. 4:5). If your heart is right, then what you do will also probably be right and God will reward it.

So as you go about your business today, check your motives. “Whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God” (1 Cor. 10:31) www.kentcrockett.blogspot.com www.makinglifecount.net ****************************************************************************************************

Receive these devotionals (free) by email: You can subscribe in the box on the right at www.kentcrockett.blogspot.com (Your email will not be given out. You’ll receive an email when the new devotional is posted)

Making Life Count Ministries
P.O. Box 680174
Prattville, Alabama 36068-0174
www.makinglifecount.net  Twitter: @KentCrockett