October 24, 2015
For… to Him are all things… To Him be the glory forever! Amen.” ..(Romans 11:36)
The Apostle Paul concluded the argument of his greatest theological masterpiece with an inspired benediction in which he declared that God is the Source of all things, He is the Power behind all things and the Glory of God is the purpose for all things.
When Paul puts these two words “all things” together, he is referring to all the things he has written about in his letter to believers in the city of Rome. He then concludes his inspired and the most comprehensive explanation of the Gospel ever written by quoting Isaiah: “Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments (decisions) and His ways past finding out!” That is followed by his benediction as referenced above.
I come to this truth on the day when many who love me are celebrating my 80th birthday. A secular motivational speaker, Dale Carnegie, wrote that the most beautiful sound in the world to a man is the sound of his own name. I disagree with him because there is a sense in which I do not even like the sound of my name. To me the most beautiful sound in the world is the name of Jesus Christ because apart from Him I would be a zero with the circle rubbed out.
As I reflect on Paul’s benediction I have made the commitment that I do not want to pour my life into any venture unless I am certain that God is the Source of it, He is the Power behind it and the glory of God is its purpose. How does this benediction impact your mindset?
Dick Woodward, 25 October 2010
Editor’s Note: As many of you know, Papa’s birthday is October 25th. This year he would have turned 85. Oh how we miss him(!) but today, as stated in this post 5 years ago, when we remember Papa, he would have us dwell in the Name of Jesus Christ & be challenged by Paul’s benediction – is God the source & power behind what we’re doing? Is God’s glory the purpose for what we do?
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Posted by Dick Woodward
May 26, 2015
“My Word… will achieve the purpose for which I sent it.” (Isaiah 55:11)
In a marvelous chapter taken from the prophesy of the one called “The prince of the prophets,” Isaiah tells us why he preached the Word of God. Earlier in this chapter he proclaimed that there is as much difference between the way we think and act and how God thinks and acts as the heavens are high above the earth. He tells us he preached the Word of God because God’s Word can bring about an alignment between the way God thinks and acts and the way people think and act.
There is a strong emphasis in Scriptures on the importance of our will being in alignment with the will of God. Jesus made his greatest prayer when He sweat drops of blood and prayed, “Not My will but Your will be done.” He taught His disciples and us to pray, “Your will be done in earth (or in their earthen vessels), as it is in heaven.”
The Word of God frequently describes the struggle between God and men like Moses, Job, Jonah, and many others who finally submit their will to the will of God – and the will of God is done in and through them on earth as it is in heaven. When God declares through Isaiah that His Word will not return to Him without accomplishing the purpose for which He sent it, I am convinced that this is the purpose God had in mind.
When you read, study and hear the Word of God proclaimed, will you let God accomplish this purpose for the Word of God? Will you let the Word of God bring about an alignment between your will and the will of God?
Dick Woodward, 28 September 2010
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Posted by Dick Woodward
March 12, 2013
“What are you doing here, Elijah?” (1 Kings 19: 9)
I find great meaning in the questions God asks people in the Bible. On our journeys of faith our loving God sometimes needs to ask us this question He asked Elijah. Where we place the emphasis in a statement can sometimes completely change its meaning. For example, we can say, “A woman, without her, man is lost!” Or we can say, “A woman without her man is lost! Using the very same words we can communicate two very different meanings.
God’s question to Elijah might have been “What are you doing here Elijah?” Or the question could simply have been “What are you doing here, Elijah?”
A very godly saint was named Bernard. A dog was named after him and so we usually think of a dog when we hear his name. He wrote this question on the inside of the door that led from his tiny cell out into the world: “What are you doing here, Bernard?”
It would be a good idea for us to have that thought engraved on the inside of our door so that every time we leave our home we would be confronted with our vision statement. It would be a good question to have engraved where we would see it as we leave our churches every time we worship or are inspired by great preaching and teaching.
It would also be a good question to ask and answer as we enter our places of business. Our workplace is where God has strategically placed us to be and have an impact for Christ in this world. We should, therefore, begin every day there with this question:
“What are you doing here?”
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Posted by Dick Woodward