Day 2/28 – Competition

Develop World Vision  – Matthew 28:19-20 (ESV). “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”  Matthew 28:19-20

“You do not preach for temporal gain. In sales, you only get credit for what you sell.  With the gospel, you get credit for proclaiming the gospel, irrespective of the response.”   Walter A. Henrichsen (“Walt H”)

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This email contains, sequentially: Memory Verse (above), Daily Devotion from “Thoughts From The Diary of A Desperate Man” by Walter A. Henrichsen (“Walt”), Scripture Reading  (read the entire Bible in 1 year), and Prayer Requests. 

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Competition

Day Fifty-nine

“Do you not know that in a race all the runners compete, but only one receives the prize? So run that you may obtain it…. I pommel my body and subdue it, lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified.”  1 Corinthians 9:24-27

The Bible does not prohibit competition.  Scripture says very little about it. Interestingly, nothing in the Old Testament political or economic system lends itself to competition.  God instituted no athletic events in the Old Testament Theocracy.  This does not mean that you cannot compete.  The believer is free to do whatever the Bible does not prohibit.  But you must be careful when you compete that you do not covet.  Competition is tied to covetousness,

contentment, and comparison.

Like the other three words, competition can either be good or bad.  You compete in a good sense when you, like Paul, strive for excellence in your walk with God. Paul, using the analogy of an athlete, says that the followers of Christ compete, but against only themselves.  How they run the race of life in comparison to others makes no difference; only the degree to which they maximize their own potential for the cause of Christ.

You sin when you compete with others for the limited resources of the world.   In such competition there is usually only one winner, and you win at the expense of your competitor.  This does not mean that you cannot compete.   Rather you cannot compete in such a way that you covet to win and are discontent when you lose.

When playing board games with my children, the game usually ended with tears of frustration while one lost to another.  We don’t mean by “good sportsmanship” that the loser does’t care; that is unrealistic.  Rather we mean that he should not reveal how deeply he cares.  The world’s system encourages competition. Beauty contests, gold medals in the Olympics, etc., encourage people to derive their significance from their ability to compete successfully.  Such competition is either the product of or leads to covetousness, and covetousness is idolatry.

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 Numbers 17-19 Mark 6:30-56 (New King James Version)

Numbers 17-19

The Budding of Aaron’s Rod

17 And the Lord spoke to Moses, saying: “Speak to the children of Israel, and get from them a rod from each father’s house, all their leaders according to their fathers’ houses—twelve rods. Write each man’s name on his rod. And you shall write Aaron’s name on the rod of Levi. For there shall be one rod for the head of eachfather’s house. Then you shall place them in the tabernacle of meeting before the Testimony, where I meet with you. And it shall be thatthe rod of the man whom I choose will blossom; thus I will rid Myself of the complaints of the children of Israel, which they make against you.”

So Moses spoke to the children of Israel, and each of their leaders gave him a rod apiece, for each leader according to their fathers’ houses, twelve rods; and the rod of Aaron wasamong their rods. And Moses placed the rods before the Lord in the tabernacle of witness.

Now it came to pass on the next day that Moses went into the tabernacle of witness, and behold, the rod of Aaron, of the house of Levi, had sprouted and put forth buds, had produced blossoms and yielded ripe almonds. Then Moses brought out all the rods from before the Lord to all the children of Israel; and they looked, and each man took his rod.

10 And the Lord said to Moses, “Bring Aaron’s rod back before the Testimony, to be kept as a sign against the rebels, that you may put their complaints away from Me, lest they die.” 11 Thus did Moses; just as the Lord had commanded him, so he did.

12 So the children of Israel spoke to Moses, saying, “Surely we die, we perish, we all perish! 13 Whoever even comes near the tabernacle of the Lord must die. Shall we all utterly die?”

Duties of Priests and Levites

18 Then the Lord said to Aaron: “You and your sons and your father’s house with you shall bear the [a]iniquity related tothe sanctuary, and you and your sons with you shall bear the iniquity associated withyour priesthood. Also bring with you your brethren of the tribe of Levi, the tribe of your father, that they may be joined with you and serve you while you and your sons arewith you before the tabernacle of [b]witness. They shall attend to your [c]needs and all the needs of the tabernacle; but they shall not come near the articles of the sanctuary and the altar, lest they die—they and you also. They shall be joined with you and attend to the needs of the tabernacle of meeting, for all the work of the tabernacle; but an outsider shall not come near you. And you shall attend to the duties of the sanctuary and the duties of the altar, that there maybe no more wrath on the children of Israel. Behold, I Myself have taken your brethren the Levites from among the children of Israel; they area gift to you, given by the Lord, to do the work of the tabernacle of meeting. Therefore you and your sons with you shall attend to your priesthood for everything at the altar and behind the veil; and you shall serve. I give your priesthood to youas a gift for service, but the outsider who comes near shall be put to death.”

Offerings for Support of the Priests

And the Lord spoke to Aaron: “Here, I Myself have also given you [d]charge of My heave offerings, all the holy gifts of the children of Israel; I have given them as a portion to you and your sons, as an ordinance forever. This shall be yours of the most holy things reservedfrom the fire: every offering of theirs, every grain offering and every sin offering and every trespass offering which they render to Me, shall bemost holy for you and your sons. 10 In a most holy placeyou shall eat it; every male shall eat it. It shall be holy to you.

11 “This also isyours: the heave offering of their gift, with all the wave offerings of the children of Israel; I have given them to you, and your sons and daughters with you, as an ordinance forever. Everyone who is [e]clean in your house may eat it.

12 “All the [f]best of the oil, all the best of the new wine and the grain, their firstfruits which they offer to the Lord, I have given them to you. 13 Whatever first ripe fruit is in their land, which they bring to the Lord, shall be yours. Everyone who is clean in your house may eat it.

14 “Every [g]devoted thing in Israel shall be yours.

15 “Everything that first opens the womb of all flesh, which they bring to the Lord, whether man or beast, shall be yours; nevertheless the firstborn of man you shall surely redeem, and the firstborn of unclean animals you shall redeem. 16 And those redeemed of the devoted things you shall redeem when one month old, according to your valuation, for five shekels of silver, according to the shekel of the sanctuary, which istwenty gerahs. 17 But the firstborn of a cow, the firstborn of a sheep, or the firstborn of a goat you shall not redeem; they areholy. You shall sprinkle their blood on the altar, and burn their fat asan offering made by fire for a sweet aroma to the Lord. 18 And their flesh shall be yours, just as the wave[h] breast and the right thigh are yours.

19 “All the heave offerings of the holy things, which the children of Israel offer to the Lord, I have given to you and your sons and daughters with you as an ordinance forever; it isa covenant of salt forever before the Lord with you and your descendants with you.”

20 Then the Lord said to Aaron: “You shall have no inheritance in their land, nor shall you have any portion among them; I amyour portion and your inheritance among the children of Israel.

Tithes for Support of the Levites

21 “Behold, I have given the children of Levi all the tithes in Israel as [i]an inheritance in return for the work which they perform, the work of the tabernacle of meeting. 22 Hereafter the children of Israel shall not come near the tabernacle of meeting, lest they bear sin and die. 23 But the Levites shall perform the work of the tabernacle of meeting, and they shall bear their iniquity; it shall bea statute forever, throughout your generations, that among the children of Israel they shall have no inheritance. 24 For the tithes of the children of Israel, which they offer up asa heave offering to the Lord, I have given to the Levites [j]as an inheritance; therefore I have said to them, ‘Among the children of Israel they shall have no inheritance.’ ”

The Tithe of the Levites

25 Then the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, 26 “Speak thus to the Levites, and say to them: ‘When you take from the children of Israel the tithes which I have given you from them as your inheritance, then you shall offer up a heave offering of it to the Lord, a tenth of the tithe. 27 And your heave offering shall be reckoned to you as though it werethe grain of the threshing floor and as the fullness of the winepress. 28 Thus you shall also offer a heave offering to the Lord from all your tithes which you receive from the children of Israel, and you shall give the Lord’s heave offering from it to Aaron the priest. 29 Of all your gifts you shall offer up every heave offering due to the Lord, from all the [k]best of them, the consecrated part of them.’ 30 Therefore you shall say to them: ‘When you have lifted up the best of it, then the restshall be accounted to the Levites as the produce of the threshing floor and as the produce of the winepress. 31 You may eat it in any place, you and your households, for it isyour [l]reward for your work in the tabernacle of meeting. 32 And you shall bear no sin because of it, when you have lifted up the best of it. But you shall not profane the holy gifts of the children of Israel, lest you die.’ ”

Laws of Purification

19 Now the Lord spoke to Moses and Aaron, saying, “This isthe [m]ordinance of the law which the Lord has commanded, saying: ‘Speak to the children of Israel, that they bring you a red heifer without [n]blemish, in which there isno defect andon which a yoke has never come. You shall give it to Eleazar the priest, that he may take it outside the camp, and it shall be slaughtered before him; and Eleazar the priest shall take some of its blood with his finger, and sprinkle some of its blood seven times directly in front of the tabernacle of meeting. Then the heifer shall be burned in his sight: its hide, its flesh, its blood, and its offal shall be burned. And the priest shall take cedar wood and hyssop and scarlet, and cast theminto the midst of the fire burning the heifer. Then the priest shall wash his clothes, he shall bathe in water, and afterward he shall come into the camp; the priest shall be unclean until evening. And the one who burns it shall wash his clothes in water, bathe in water, and shall be unclean until evening. Then a man who isclean shall gather up the ashes of the heifer, and store themoutside the camp in a clean place; and they shall be kept for the congregation of the children of Israel for the water of [o]purification; it isfor purifying from sin. 10 And the one who gathers the ashes of the heifer shall wash his clothes, and be unclean until evening. It shall be a statute forever to the children of Israel and to the stranger who dwells among them.

11 ‘He who touches the dead [p]body of anyone shall be unclean seven days. 12 He shall purify himself with the water on the third day and on the seventh day; thenhe will be clean. But if he does not purify himself on the third day and on the seventh day, he will not be clean. 13 Whoever touches the body of anyone who has died, and does not purify himself, defiles the tabernacle of the Lord. That person shall be cut off from Israel. He shall be unclean, because the water of purification was not sprinkled on him; his uncleanness isstill on him.

14 ‘This isthe law when a man dies in a tent: All who come into the tent and all who arein the tent shall be unclean seven days; 15 and every open vessel, which has no cover fastened on it, isunclean. 16 Whoever in the open field touches one who is slain by a sword or who has died, or a bone of a man, or a grave, shall be unclean seven days.

17 ‘And for an unclean personthey shall take some of the ashes of the heifer burnt for purification from sin, and [q]running water shall be put on them in a vessel. 18 A clean person shall take hyssop and dip itin the water, sprinkle iton the tent, on all the vessels, on the persons who were there, or on the one who touched a bone, the slain, the dead, or a grave. 19 The clean personshall sprinkle the unclean on the third day and on the seventh day; and on the seventh day he shall purify himself, wash his clothes, and bathe in water; and at evening he shall be clean.

20 ‘But the man who is unclean and does not purify himself, that person shall be cut off from among the assembly, because he has defiled the sanctuary of the Lord. The water of purification has not been sprinkled on him; he isunclean. 21 It shall be a perpetual statute for them. He who sprinkles the water of purification shall wash his clothes; and he who touches the water of purification shall be unclean until evening. 22 Whatever the unclean persontouches shall be unclean; and the person who touches itshall be unclean until evening.’ ”

Footnotes:

  • Numbers 18:1 guilt
  • Numbers 18:2 testimony
  • Numbers 18:3 service
  • Numbers 18:8 custody
  • Numbers 18:11 purified
  • Numbers 18:12 Lit. fat
  • Numbers 18:14 consecrated
  • Numbers 18:18 breast of the wave offering
  • Numbers 18:21 a possession
  • Numbers 18:24 for a possession
  • Numbers 18:29 Lit. fat
  • Numbers 18:31 wages
  • Numbers 19:2 statute
  • Numbers 19:2 defect
  • Numbers 19:9 Lit. impurity
  • Numbers 19:11 Lit. soul of man
  • Numbers 19:17 Lit. living

Mark 6:30-56

Feeding the Five Thousand

30 Then the apostles gathered to Jesus and told Him all things, both what they had done and what they had taught. 31 And He said to them, “Come aside by yourselves to a deserted place and rest a while.” For there were many coming and going, and they did not even have time to eat. 32 So they departed to a deserted place in the boat by themselves.

33 But [a]the multitudes saw them departing, and many knew Him and ran there on foot from all the cities. They arrived before them and came together to Him. 34 And Jesus, when He came out, saw a great multitude and was moved with compassion for them, because they were like sheep not having a shepherd. So He began to teach them many things. 35 When the day was now far spent, His disciples came to Him and said, “This is a deserted place, and already the hour islate. 36 Send them away, that they may go into the surrounding country and villages and buy themselves [b]bread; for they have nothing to eat.”

37 But He answered and said to them, “You give them something to eat.”

And they said to Him, “Shall we go and buy two hundred denarii worth of bread and give them somethingto eat?”

38 But He said to them, “How many loaves do you have? Go and see.”

And when they found out they said, “Five, and two fish.”

39 Then He commanded them to make them all sit down in groups on the green grass. 40 So they sat down in ranks, in hundreds and in fifties. 41 And when He had taken the five loaves and the two fish, He looked up to heaven, blessed and broke the loaves, and gave themto His disciples to set before them; and the two fish He divided among themall. 42 So they all ate and were filled. 43 And they took up twelve baskets full of fragments and of the fish. 44 Now those who had eaten the loaves were [c]about five thousand men.

Jesus Walks on the Sea

45 Immediately He [d]made His disciples get into the boat and go before Him to the other side, to Bethsaida, while He sent the multitude away. 46 And when He had sent them away, He departed to the mountain to pray. 47 Now when evening came, the boat was in the middle of the sea; and He wasalone on the land. 48 Then He saw them straining at rowing, for the wind was against them. Now about the fourth watch of the night He came to them, walking on the sea, and would have passed them by. 49 And when they saw Him walking on the sea, they supposed it was a ghost, and cried out; 50 for they all saw Him and were troubled. But immediately He talked with them and said to them, “Be[e] of good cheer! It is I; do not be afraid.” 51 Then He went up into the boat to them, and the wind ceased. And they were greatly amazed in themselves beyond measure, and marveled. 52 For they had not understood about the loaves, because their heart was hardened.

Many Touch Him and Are Made Well

53 When they had crossed over, they came to the land of Gennesaret and anchored there. 54 And when they came out of the boat, immediately [f]the people recognized Him, 55 ran through that whole surrounding region, and began to carry about on beds those who were sick to wherever they heard He was. 56 Wherever He entered, into villages, cities, or the country, they laid the sick in the marketplaces, and begged Him that they might just touch the hem of His garment. And as many as touched Him were made well.

Footnotes:

  • Mark 6:33 NU, M they
  • Mark 6:36 NU something to eatand omits the rest of v. 36.
  • Mark 6:44 NU, M omit about
  • Mark 6:45 invited, strongly urged
  • Mark 6:50 Take courage
  • Mark 6:54 Lit. they

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“You cannot know until after you believe and speak; that is the order: believe, speak, know.” Walt

PRAYER REQUESTS 

Praise Report: Sister Courtney surgery on the basil cell carcinoma close to one of her eyes was a success and was reported to be one of the smallest that the doctor ever saw. We also Praise God for the success of the delivery of her new baby girl and her quick recovery of having all 4 of her wisdom teeth surgically removed. All this happened over the last three weeks… Praise God!

Please Pray for Brother David Frear family going through testing times. 

Pray for Simon, Sister Sonia’s friend, needs heart and kidney transplant; and, above all needs to receive Jesus.  

Brother John LaPorte asks for Prayer this week as he seeks God’s Will in His life.  

Please Pray for Dave Ubank and his family. They are ministering and rescuing children and families in Syria directly affected by  Isis – Pray for their protection and their ministry.  For a short 2 minute video about Ubanks: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I_htIgIvgDM[/embedyt

Please Pray for Jim Nelson and family ministering in China. 

Please continue to Pray for Sister Kathryn to be able to teach first grade next year and that through her teaching skills with God in her instill in these first graders the Love of Christ.  

Pease continue to Pray for Brother Bob Summers that he have complete healing after his surgery for a blood clot in his brain.

Please continue to Pray for Sister Diana who is witnessing to young persons with confused doctrine.  Pray God would speak through her and provide His Holy Clarity directly this young person to Him. 

Please continue to Pray for Jamie to accept the Lord into her life and the Peace only He can give her. Jamie recently lost her man that she had been with for over the 30 years to suicide. 

Please continue to Pray for our nation that God would open all our eyes to the sin that is drowning us. Abortion, sex outside of marriage, hatred & divisiveness, greed, pride, only to name a few and only scratches the surface.  Please Pray and Fast for our nation to turn from this evil that is enveloping us.   II Chronicles‬ ‭7:14‬ ‭NKJV‬‬

“If My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.”

Please continue to Pray for our Brothers’ and Sisters’ struggling with various addictions. Pray that God would reveal Himself to them that all things are possible through Him… He can Cure any addiction … He is our Great Creator, He is our Savior, He is our Healer …He is our All and All!  

Please continue to Pray for the healing of baby Caden (Kevin Odor’s grandson) – born with Agenesis of the corpus callosum (rare neurological birth defect). 

Please continue to Pray for Sister Fabiola and her children in Mexico. And, please continue to Pray for her church caught up in the tragedies surrounding the murder of her husband, x-husband and one of her children.

Please continue to Pray for the Salvation of Hagen who is HIV positive and is deathly ill. 

We continue to ask for Prayers and Gods Grace and Mercy for Baby Grace and her parents, Lisa and Darren. 

Please continue to Pray for Alejandro Corral, his son Alejandro Jr., and his aunt Josefina. 

Please continue to Pray for Brother Steve Venable dealing with ALS. 

Please continue to Pray for our Persecuted Brothers and Sisters and their families that are suffering and giving their lives for our Faith.  10 WAYS TO PRAY FOR OUR PERSECUTED CHRISTIAN FAMILY.. Pray our brothers and sisters will:

1. Sense God’s presence (Heb. 13:5) 

2. Know we are praying for them (2 Tim. 1:3) 

3. Experience God’s comfort (2 Thess. 2:16–17) 

4. See God open doors to evangelism (Col. 4:3) 

5. Boldly share the gospel (Acts 4:29) 

6. Mature in their faith (Col. 1:28–29) 

7. Be granted wisdom in covert ministry work (Acts 9:23–25) 

8. Remain joyful amid suffering (Acts 5:41) 

9. Forgive and love their persecutors (Matt. 5:44) 

10. Be rooted in God’s Word (2 Tim. 3:16–17)

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Stand with your Brothers and Sisters in Prayer and Support. (See: The Voice of the Martyrs: https://www.persecution.com)

Please continue Pray for our President & government leaders that they will would seek God and Walk in His Ways.    

Please continue to pray for Biblical “headship” in families.

Please continue to Pray for all our children. 

Please continue to Pray that there would be a resurgence of Biblical “Fear of the Lord” in the church and in each of us… “to fear the Lord is the beginning of Wisdom.”

Please continue to Pray for Brother Ron Brink’s son who had 3+ military tours in Iraq and Afghanistan and who is now suffering brain damage and PTSD.  Pray for God’s Healing Power to fall upon Johnathon. (Ron is a 20 plus year missionary in Mexico with Touch Baja… for info on Touch Baja and how to touch the Mexican people for Christ, see http://www.touchbaja.com.)

Please continue to Pray for the Sharon India Foundation (“SIF”) to assisting the poor of India.  Through SIF: Widows have received medical treatment and been given quality sewing machines and training on how to use them to make a living. Orphans have been given free education in their neighborhood slum areas.  After natural disasters relief has been provided in the nature of medical, food items, blankets, clothing and building materials.  Bore wells have been successfully dug to provide fresh water to affected areas.  Water purification systems have also been given out on a limited basis. Special shoes have been purchased for lepers with ulcerated feet.  Thousands of books have been translated to assist in the ever growing discipleship outreach of E-Squared (Evangelism and Edification/Disciples).  Sharon India Foundation has no administrative costs and 100% of all donations go directly to the Indian pastors and their ministries. (Let’s reach India and beyond for Christ…see how you can help: https://sharonindia.org.)

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