Mark 7:13, “Making the word of God of none effect through your tradition, which ye have delivered: and many such like things do ye.”
Deuteronomy 4:2 clearly states “Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish ought from it . . . .” This same thought is repeated in the New Testament in Revelation 22:18-19 with very stiff penalties. Religious man is very swift to observe the part about not diminishing any of God’s commandments, but there seems to be an unwritten law that adding to them is okay. Every denomination has its own set of “do’s and don’ts” which aren’t found in scripture, and like those of the hypocritical Pharisees, their unwritten laws usually have to do with outward appearance.
We need to remember that adding to God’s commandments is just as bad as taking away from them. We need to speak when the Bible speaks, and be silent when the Bible is silent.
The commandments of God and the traditions of men are not the same thing and must always be clearly distinguished. Any attempt to place them on the same level will always result in making the Word of God of none effect. You have to either “lay aside” the commandment of God to keep the traditions of men or you have to “lay aside” the traditions of men to keep the commandments of God (Ex. 20:3). Church liturgy is tradition, as well as many of the “do’s and don’ts” taught by churches today. We can neutralize the positive power of God’s Word toward us, and nothing will do that quicker than elevating man’s traditions above God’s Word. God’s Word is still true (Rom. 3:3-4) and will not return to Him void (Isa. 55:11).
The Word will not profit anyone who doesn’t believe it, but God’s Word itself doesn’t lose any power. If some do not believe God’s Word, does that make God’s Word of no effect? The answer to this question is a resounding “no!” God’s Word still has its power to save, and it will profit you when you mix it with faith.
POWER IN PRAISE
Praise the Lord, for His mercy endures forever. —2 Chronicles 20:21
Willie Myrick was kidnapped from his driveway when he was 9 years old. For hours, he traveled in a car with his kidnapper, not knowing what would happen to him.
During that time, Willie decided to sing a song called “Every Praise”. As he repeatedly sang the words, his abductor spewed profanity and told him to shut up. Finally, the man stopped the car and let Willie out—unharmed.
As Willie demonstrated, truly praising the Lord requires us to concentrate on God’s character while forsaking what we fear, what is wrong in our lives, and the self-sufficiency in our hearts.
The Israelites reached this place of surrender when they faced attackers. As they prepared for battle, King Jehoshaphat organized a choir to march out in advance of their enemy’s army. The choir sang, “Praise the Lord, for His mercy endures forever” (2 Chron. 20:21). When the music started, Israel’s enemies became confused and destroyed each other. As the prophet Jahaziel had predicted, Israel didn’t need to fight at all (v.17).
Whether we’re facing a battle or feeling trapped, we can glorify God in our hearts. Truly, “The Lord is great and greatly to be praised” (Ps. 96:4).
Dear God, You are holy and good. I worship You today despite the problems that cloud my vision of You. Let my soul tell of Your glory forever.
Worship is a heart overflowing with praise to God
Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. – Colossians 3:15, NIV
As believers, we are commanded to be thankful. I believe this will happen naturally as we allow the peace of God to rule in our hearts. Peace is a choice. You don’t have to let things upset you. You don’t have to be anxious and worried. That word peace means to set at one again. When you set your mind at one with God and His Word, you will have peace. God also leads us by peace. If you don’t have peace about a decision, wait and follow the direction of the peace in your heart.
Remember, when you have peace, you can’t help but be thankful! You can’t help but have a song in your heart and a spring in your step! Choose today to let the peace of Christ rule in your heart and have an attitude of gratitude toward the Lord.
GOD WILL NEVER BE ANGRY WITH YOU
For this is like the waters of Noah to Me; for as I have sworn that the waters of Noah would no longer cover the earth, so have I sworn that I would not be angry with you, nor rebuke you. For the mountains shall depart and the hills be removed, but My kindness shall not depart from you, nor shall My covenant of peace be removed,” says the Lord, who has mercy on you ISAIAH 54:9–10
The good news of the gospel is that God will NEVER be angry with us. He only has to tell us this, but He wanted us to be so sure that He swore in His Word that He would never be angry with us again.
Today’s verses are from Isaiah 54, which is right after the famous messianic chapter of the sufferings of Christ in Isaiah 53. Therefore, Isaiah 54 is spelling out the triumphs and spoils of His sufferings.
Do you know why God will never be angry with us again? It is because of what Christ has accomplished for us! On the cross, God poured out all His anger on the body of His Son. Jesus exhausted all the fiery indignation of a holy God against all our sins. And because our sins have already been punished, God, who is a holy and just God, will not punish us today when we believe in what Christ has done. God’s holiness is now on your side. His righteousness is now for you, not against you. You are His beloved, in whom He is well pleased because of Jesus’ finished work!
When you believe this truth, you will have the confidence to face every challenge with boldness, knowing that you have God’s unmerited favor on your side!
IF YOU’RE A WIFE
Wives, submit to your own husbands… – Ephesians 5:22 NKJV
Some people use this Scripture to treat women like a doormat, and rob them of their voice and right to any leadership role. Read the Bible! Deborah led the nation of Israel. Huldah the prophetess spoke the Word of God to kings. Let’s read the Scripture again: ‘Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord.’ As a wife you are called to submit to ‘your own husband’, not to all men.
In God’s eyes men and women are equal (Galatians 3:28). Paul is not speaking about your ‘person’; he’s speaking about your ‘role’ in the home. As a human being, a general is not more important than a sergeant. But for an army to function successfully there must be a respected chain of command where one leads and the other follows. God doesn’t want you to squirm under your husband’s leadership, but snuggle up into the security that it should afford you. You can excel in your career yet still allow yourself to enjoy being nurtured, loved, and protected by your husband. Properly understood, your husband’s love and leadership do not rob you of your strength, they simply keep you in balance by allowing you to reconnect with your softness and femininity. But a word of caution: if you’re looking for a man to be ‘your everything’, forget it! God’s the only one who can be everything. By expecting perfection from your husband, you’re asking more from someone else than you can provide yourself.
Here’s God’s plan: ‘…she is your equal partner in God’s gift of new life. Treat her as you should, so your prayers will not be hindered.’ (1 Peter 3:7 NLT)