Psalm 27, a Psalm of David

27 The Lord is my light and my salvation;
Whom shall I fear?
The Lord is the strength of my life;
Of whom shall I be afraid?
When the wicked came against me
To eat up my flesh,
My enemies and foes,
They stumbled and fell.
Though an army may encamp against me,
My heart shall not fear;
Though war may rise against me,
In this I will be confident.

One thing I have desired of the Lord,
That will I seek:
That I may dwell in the house of the Lord
All the days of my life,
To behold the beauty of the Lord,
And to inquire in His temple.
For in the time of trouble
He shall hide me in His pavilion;
In the secret place of His tabernacle
He shall hide me;
He shall set me high upon a rock.

And now my head shall be lifted up above my enemies all around me;
Therefore I will offer sacrifices of joy in His tabernacle;
I will sing, yes, I will sing praises to the Lord.

Hear, O Lord, when I cry with my voice!
Have mercy also upon me, and answer me.
When You said, “Seek My face,”
My heart said to You, “Your face, Lord, I will seek.”
Do not hide Your face from me;
Do not turn Your servant away in anger;
You have been my help;
Do not leave me nor forsake me,
O God of my salvation.
10 When my father and my mother forsake me,
Then the Lord will take care of me.

11 Teach me Your way, O Lord,
And lead me in a smooth path, because of my enemies.
12 Do not deliver me to the will of my adversaries;
For false witnesses have risen against me,
And such as breathe out violence.
13 I would have lost heart, unless I had believed
That I would see the goodness of the Lord
In the land of the living.

14 Wait on the Lord;
Be of good courage,
And He shall strengthen your heart;
Wait, I say, on the Lord!

Why Faith?

“Now Thomas, called the Twin, one of the twelve, was not with them when Jesus came. The other disciples therefore said to him, ‘We have seen the Lord.’

“So he said to them, ‘Unless I see in His hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and put my hand into His side, I will not believe.’

“And after eight days His disciples were again inside, and Thomas with them. Jesus came, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said, ‘Peace to you!’ Then He said to Thomas, ‘Reach your finger here, and look at My hands; and reach your hand here, and put it into My side. Do not be unbelieving, but believing.’

“And Thomas answered and said to Him, ‘My Lord and my God!’

“Jesus said to him, ‘Thomas, because you have seen Me, you have believed. Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.'” John 20:24-29 NKJV

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Why is faith needed–because, like Thomas, we, too, can sometimes doubt,

so we need to continually go to God’s Word to push wrong thinking out.

Without faith, it’s impossible to please God–it’s a detriment to us as well.

How can we doubt God’s integrity, who’s provided heaven and escape from hell?

The truth about this…is that there’s a deceiver, who actively bombards with lies,

which is the reason God says to be vigilant in keeping His Word before our eyes.

And words of faith are like a refreshing breeze in the midst of a bad situation.

“Have faith in God,” Jesus said, which are His words to the people of every nation.

“For with God, nothing shall be impossible,” is another important Biblical quote.

We can even “walk on the water,” at His direction, boldly stepping out of the boat.

Author, Ravi Zacharias, called Thomas the “Questioning Apostle,” but doubt didn’t stay.

Thomas went on to serve in God’s kingdom, leading others to follow Christ and The Way.

So, just like Thomas, we can walk on in faith, despite doubts that have assailed us.

Fixing our eyes upon Jesus, we’ll be able to say, “God’s Word has never failed us!”

P. A. Oltrogge

“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” Hebrews 12:1-2 NIV

The above image of Jesus
used by permission of Bob Berran
at http://www.bobberran.com
See his Online Store to
purchase reprints of
various sizes.

Ravi Zacharias was the author of many Christian books. Having been born and raised in India, he spoke of the cited influence by Thomas, for Christianity, to a certain area of that country, historically in Kerala. He wrote of this in “Walking from East to West,” the autobiography of his own life, on pages 46 to 50.

Peace be with you

“Then, the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled, for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood in the midst, and said to them, “Peace be with you.” John 20:19 NKJV

Jesus came and stood in the midst of His disciples after He’d been raised from the dead.

He’s in our midst today, the eternal Prince of Peace–for us, His blood was shed.

Our Shepherd laid down His life for the sheep. He’s the chief cornerstone and our rock.

We praise God for what His Son has done and that we’re part of His blessed flock.

Nothing shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

In the midst of troubled times, He’s the mighty fortress, who, with trust, we look toward.

P. A. Oltrogge

Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on Thee: because he trusteth in Thee.” Isaiah 26:3 KJV

“But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you. Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” John 14:26-27 KJV

“I am the good shepherd; and I know My sheep, and am known by My own. As the Father knows Me, even so I know the Father; and I lay down My life for the sheep.” John 19:14-15 NKJV

“Now may the God of peace who brought up our Lord Jesus from the dead, that great Shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, make you complete in every good work to do His will, working in you what is well pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.” Hebrews 13:19-21 NKJV

“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God which surpasses all comprehension, shall guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7 NKJV

“For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 8:38-39 KJV (and all of verses 31-39)

“The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer; my God, my strength, in whom I will trust; my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.” Psalm 18:2 NKJV

“Therefore it is also contained in the Scripture, “Behold, I lay in Zion A chief cornerstone, elect, precious, And he who believes on Him will by no means be put to shame.” 1 Peter 2:6 NKJV

A lamp to my feet, a light to my path…

I can’t start my day, Lord Jesus, without first turning to You.
I need Your promised help to be able to see things through.

I need to know You’ll be walking with me, steadying me on my feet,
to handle any challenges today that I might possibly meet.

Of course, I know Your assurances, as written to us in Your Word;
but folding my hands in prayer to You reassures me that You’ve heard.

I’m relying on You for strength and peace and a faith that won’t retreat.
On paths my feet will tread, may I “see” beside my own, Your sandaled feet. 

P. A. Oltrogge

“Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.”
Psalm 119:105 KJV

“Hold thou me up and I shall be safe: and I will have respect unto thy statutes continually.” Psalm 119:117 KJV

“Then shalt thou walk in thy way safely, and thy foot shall not stumble.”
Proverbs 3:23 KJV

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways, acknowledge Him and He shall direct your paths.” Proverbs 3:5-6 NKJV

“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” Philippians 4:13 NKJV

“The Lord gives strength to his people; the Lord blesses his people with peace.” Psalm 29:11 NIV

“You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you!” Isaiah 26:3 NLT

“I indeed baptize you with water, but He who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.” (Said of Jesus by John the Baptist)
Matthew 3:11 NKJV

You may be blessed to view episodes of “The Chosen” (Dallas Jenkins, Director) on the life of Jesus.

Standing in the Need of Prayer

“Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men, for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence.  For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior,  who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. For there is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus, who gave Himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time,  for which I was appointed a preacher and an apostle—I am speaking the truth in Christ and not lying—a teacher of the Gentiles in faith and truth.” 1 Timothy 2:1-7 NKJV

At the end of the coming year, I’d like to be able to say…

I didn’t meet or pass by a person for whom I didn’t pray.

It doesn’t have to be long…and I can quietly intercede–

even praying to God in thought, for Him to meet their most urgent need.

P. A. Oltrogge

You may already be doing this, not wanting to miss someone who may need the Lord’s help in a particular way in their lives…and for some, most importantly, to come to know Him. It is a worthy goal, for there are surely many people who don’t even realize that they are standing in the need of prayer….

There’s still light in Goshen

The Lord was working out a major plan to set free–the captive Hebrew people of old. There would be ten plagues, so the actions of Moses and Aaron would need to be brave and bold.

When they came before Pharaoh, they had commands from the Lord on what to say or do, to warn him of, or initiate, every plague that his nation was soon to go through.

The ninth plague of darkness was so severe that the Egyptians couldn’t get around. For three days, the darkness was “felt” and thick, in the air and on the ground.

One of Egypt’s chief deities was the sun “god,” so such darkness proved the Lord’s might, to prevail over any of the “gods” of the Egyptians. Only His power could end the dark night.

But the Hebrews were under God’s protection; and, in the midst of that constant night, there was light in Goshen in their dwellings because God was in charge of their fight.

Today, people experience darkness, not of God and not a kind where you can’t visibly see, but darkness in their minds when they’ve not recognized “the door,” through which anyone’s able to go free.

Jesus pointed the way, saying, “If the Son, therefore, shall make you free, you shall be free indeed.” You can experience “Goshen” through God’s Son yet today, and you’ll have all of the light that you’ll need.

P. A. Oltrogge

“Then the Lord said to Moses, ‘Stretch out your hand toward heaven, that there may be darkness over the land of Egypt, darkness which may even be felt. So Moses stretched out his hand toward heaven, and there was thick darkness in all the land of Egypt three days. They did not see one another; nor did anyone rise from his place for three days. But all the children of Israel had light in their dwellings.” Exodus 10:21-23

“If the Son, therefore, shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.” John 8:36 KJV

“Again therefore Jesus spoke to them, saying, ‘I am the light of the world; he who follows Me shall not walk in the darkness, but shall have the light of life.’” John 8:12

“I am the door; if anyone enters through Me, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture. The thief comes only to steal and kill, and destroy: I came that they might have life, and might have it abundantly.’” John 10:9-10

“But even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing, whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine on them.” 2 Corinthians 4:3-4 NKJV

The Promise of God’s Enduring Mercy

As we enter into 2021, there are challenges that loom ahead, but we know we can rely on the Holy Spirit and God’s Word by which we’re fed.

It’s GOD’S MERCY that endures forever, and His steadfast love will never fail. Remember Emmanuel, God is with us, and His mercy endures through any stormy gale.

P. A. Oltrogge

“Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.” Matthew 1:23 KJV

“But this I call to mind, and therefore I have hope: The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is thy faithfulness.” Lamentations 3:21-23 RSV

“Then he (Jesus) arose and rebuked the wind, and said to the sea, ‘Peace, be still!’ And the wind ceased and there was a great calm.” Mark 4:39 NKJV

“Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever.”
1 Chronicles 16:34 NKJV

“(Thanksgiving to the Lord for His Great Works of Deliverance) Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever.” Psalm 107:1 NKJV

“Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is good!
For His mercy endures forever.
Let Israel now say,
‘His mercy endures forever.’
Let the house of Aaron now say,
‘His mercy endures forever.’
Let those who fear the Lord now say,
‘His mercy endures forever.’”
Psalm 118:1-4 NKJV

Thanksgiving to God for His Enduring Mercy

“Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is good!
For His mercy endures forever.

Oh, give thanks to the God of gods!
For His mercy endures forever.

Oh, give thanks to the Lord of lords!
For His mercy endures forever:

To Him who alone does great wonders,
For His mercy endures forever;

To Him who by wisdom made the heavens,
For His mercy endures forever;

To Him who laid out the earth above the waters,
For His mercy endures forever;

To Him who made great lights,
For His mercy endures forever—

The sun to rule by day,
For His mercy endures forever;

The moon and stars to rule by night,
For His mercy endures forever.

To Him who struck Egypt in their firstborn,
For His mercy endures forever;

And brought out Israel from among them,
For His mercy endures forever;

With a strong hand, and with an outstretched arm,
For His mercy endures forever;

To Him who divided the Red Sea in two,
For His mercy endures forever;

And made Israel pass through the midst of it,
For His mercy endures forever;

But overthrew Pharaoh and his army in the Red Sea,
For His mercy endures forever;

To Him who led His people through the wilderness,
For His mercy endures forever;

To Him who struck down great kings,
For His mercy endures forever;

And slew famous kings,
For His mercy endures forever—

Sihon king of the Amorites,
For His mercy endures forever;

And Og king of Bashan,
For His mercy endures forever—

And gave their land as a heritage,
For His mercy endures forever;

A heritage to Israel His servant,
For His mercy endures forever.

Who remembered us in our lowly state,
For His mercy endures forever;

And rescued us from our enemies,
For His mercy endures forever;

Who gives food to all flesh,
For His mercy endures forever.

Oh, give thanks to the God of heaven!
For His mercy endures forever.”

Psalm 136:1-26 NKJV

Celebrate Life

Celebrate the gift of life today—
don’t let troubles steal away your joy.
Jesus offers us abundant life,
while the devil only seeks to destroy.

There’s so much good to appreciate;
open your eyes to the blessings you’ll find.
And don’t let past disappointments cloud
today and your future that God has in mind.

P. A. Oltrogge

“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.” John 10:10 NASB

“The Lord will perfect that which concerns me; Your mercy, O Lord, endures forever; Do not forsake the works of your hands.” Psalm 138:8 NKJV

“The Lord will work out his plans for my life—
For your faithful love, O Lord, endures forever.
Don’t abandon me, for you made me.” Psalm 138:8 NLT

“But now, O Lord, You are our Father; we are the clay, and You our potter; and all we are the work of Your hand.” Isaiah 64:8 NKJV

“‘For I know the plans and thoughts that I have for you,’ says the Lord, ‘plans for peace and well-being and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.’” Jeremiah 29:11 AMP

“Finally brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things.” Philippians 4:8 NKJV

For great encouragement, see https://www.jerrysavelle.org/2021word/

Join the New Year’s Eve celebration this evening at 8:00 p.m. ET on http://www.govictory.com

Our Everliving Jesus

Jesus, the Son of God, was birthed by Mary and laid in a manger.
King Herod sought to kill Him, but He was kept from danger…
for His earthly father, Joseph, having been enlightened and driven,
by instructions in a dream that the angel of the Lord had given,
took the Child and His mother away to a distant Egyptian location.
And, there, the family stayed for a specified duration.

In later years, during Jesus’ ministry, others opposed Him, too.
But no one could actually harm Him until His ministry days were through.
The devil himself confronted Jesus, with temptations to disband
from loyalty to the Godhead and to all that was divinely planned.
Jesus was obedient, however, to His Father throughout His days.
Then, even death, with its finality, couldn’t hold Him—God be praised!

Today, some seek to downplay Jesus’ divinity or worldwide fame,
or they deny acknowledging the Lordship of His name.
But His is a name that’s above all names—an everlasting name,
a name through which we’re made righteous, for He took all our blame.
And one day every knee shall bow, acknowledging all that’s been said,
of Jesus Christ as Lord of all, who is surely the Church’s head.

Some, who are doubtful, try to put Jesus completely out of thought,
abandoning the Christian truths that they were previously taught.
But His is a name which we should praise, and certainly not ignore,
for there IS no other God—Jesus said, “I am the Door.”
How will we escape if we neglect so great a salvation,
which God has freely offered to all people of every nation?

It is through Jesus Christ that God has sought to bless us all.
He’s the one and only Savior sent to redeem us from man’s fall.
He’s the Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end…
and about whom the scriptures most assuredly were penned.
And, thankfully, we can bring to Jesus any problem, large or small.
He’s “The Everlasting Father,” on whom we’re privileged to call.

P. A. Oltrogge

“For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The Everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.” Isaiah 9:6 KJV

“Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am.” John 8:58 KJV

“Jesus said to him, ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me. If you had known Me, you would have known My Father also; and from now on you know Him and have seen Him.’ Philip said to Him, ‘Lord, show us the Father, and it is sufficient for us.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Have I been with you so long, and yet you have not known me, Philip? He who has seen Me has seen the Father; so how can you say, ‘Show us the Father’?” John 14:6-9 NKJV

Jesus said, “I and the Father are one.” John 10:30 NIV

“For if the word spoken through angels proved unalterable, and every transgression and disobedience received a just penalty, how will we escape if we neglect so great a salvation? After it was at the first spoken through the Lord, it was confirmed to us by those who heard, God also testifying with them, both by signs and wonders and by various miracles and by gifts of the Holy Spirit according to His own will.” Hebrews 2:2-4 NASB

“And He is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence.” Colossians 1:18 KJV

“And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.” Colossians 3:17 NKJV

“…casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.” 1 Peter 5:7 NKJV

The Manger

Jesus…

It’s a funny thing, but I never saw
Why You might have been laid in a bed of straw.
That’s where the animals came to feed,
And that was representative of our daily need
Of the Bread of Life, which, Jesus, You are.
We’re drawn to Your Word like wise men to a star.
To all people the angels proclaimed tidings of great joy,
By pointing to the birth of that God-indwelt boy,
Who lay down in the manger where the animals were fed.
Jesus–the Word was God–You’re our daily bread.

P. A. Oltrogge

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” John 1:1

Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; he who comes to Me will not hunger, and he who believes in Me will never thirst.” John 6:35

“And Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the city of Nazareth, to Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and family of David, in order to register, along with Mary, who was engaged to him, and was with child. And it came about that while they were there, the days were completed for her to give birth. And she gave birth to her first-born son, and she wrapped him in cloths, and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.” Luke 2:4-7