Whyte House Family Devotions #328 (04/14/18): “The Return of the Lord,” by Billy Graham


My family and I have had morning devotions, or family altar as some people call it, every day ever since my wife, Meriqua, and I were married 30 years ago. We have prayed and read the Bible together as well as other devotional books as a family, and it is the only reason why this family has stayed together, and the only reason why God has blessed our family and used our family in ministry all of these years. We read Ephesians 5 and 6 every morning as it relates to the role of each member of the family and how that we need to put on the whole armor of God to fight against the devil who is seeking to destroy our family and all Christian families, churches, and Christians. So, now after 30 years of doing this in our home, we are opening this up to others who don’t have a family to pray with, who don’t have a spouse, or who are single by choice, and to encourage all families who are still intact to go back to the family altar and have devotions together every morning. In these devotions, you may hear me deal with a temptation I’m facing in my life, you may hear me rebuke my wife about not doing what she should be doing, or you may hear me get on one of my children’s cases about something they’re doing. Don’t be shocked; this is real life.

SING “DOXOLOGY”

Praise God from Whom all blessings flow
Praise Him, all creatures here below
Praise Him above, ye heavenly hosts
Praise Father, Son and Holy Ghost
Amen

Billy Graham said, “As Christians, we have only one authority, one compass: the Word of God.”

——

RECITE: THE NEW NICENE CREED

We believe in one God,
the Father almighty,
maker of heaven and earth,
of all things visible and invisible.
And in one Lord Jesus Christ,
the only Son of God,
begotten from the Father before all ages,
God from God,
Light from Light,
true God from true God,
begotten, not made;
of the same essence as the Father.

Through him all things were made.
For us and for our salvation
he came down from heaven;
he became incarnate by the Holy Spirit and the virgin Mary,
and was made human.

He was crucified for us under Pontius Pilate;
he suffered, bled, died, and was buried.
The third day he rose again, according to the Scriptures.
He was seen alive by Mary Magdalene and the other women, the disciples and over 500 other brethren;
He ascended to heaven
and is seated at the right hand of the Father.
He will come again with glory
to judge the living and the dead.
His kingdom will never end.

And we believe in the Holy Spirit,
the Lord, the giver of life.
He proceeds from the Father and the Son,
and with the Father and the Son is worshiped and glorified.
He spoke through the prophets.

We believe in one holy universal and apostolic church.
We affirm one baptism for the forgiveness of sins.
We look forward to the resurrection of the dead,
and to life in the world to come. Amen.

——

EPHESIANS 6:4

And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.

So far, we have discussed how fathers may provoke their children to anger by capriciousness, unreasonableness, favoritism, selfishness, criticism without praise, demanding perfection, extremes of over- and under- discipline, insensitivity, not being available, breaking promises, lying, and hypocrisy. Stephen J. Cole continues in his commentary, “Fathers may provoke their children to anger by verbal and/or physical abuse. I wish I didn’t even have to mention this because it should be non-existent in Christian circles. But sadly, in many Christian homes, fathers not only yell at their children, but also call them names or say hurtful things or hit them in anger. While there is a place for properly spanking younger children, it is never okay to spank a child when you are not in control of your anger! And, Ephesians 4:29 applies to every word you speak to your children: ‘Let no unwholesome word proceed from your mouth, but only such a word as is good for edification according to the need of the moment, so that it will give grace to those who hear.'”

——-

PRAYER

——-

DEVOTIONAL PASSAGE: Psalm 126:4-6

4 Turn again our captivity, O Lord, as the streams in the south.

5 They that sow in tears shall reap in joy.

6 He that goeth forth and weepeth, bearing precious seed, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him.

Regarding this passage, Matthew Henry writes: “The beginnings of mercies encourage us to pray for the completion of them. And while we are in this world there will be matter for prayer, even when we are most furnished with matter for praise. Suffering saints are often in tears; they share the calamities of human life, and commonly have a greater share than others. But they sow in tears; they do the duty of an afflicted state. Weeping must not hinder sowing; we must get good from times of affliction. And they that sow, in the tears of godly sorrow, to the Spirit, shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting; and that will be a joyful harvest indeed.”

———

PRAYER FOR THE ESTATES
1. Clergy (church)
2. Government
3. People (citizens)
4. The press (media)
5. New media/Online journalists

PRAYER FOR CHURCH LEADERSHIP
– For all pastors, church leaders, denominational leaders, Bible teachers, missionaries, and ministry workers.

GOVERNMENT LEADERS

1 Timothy 2:1-2 says, “I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men; For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty.”

President Donald Trump and his administration
Vice President Mike Pence
First Lady Melania Trump
Second Lady Karen Pence
All White House staff including: Deputy National Security Advisor Ricky L. Waddell
All leaders of federal agencies including: Social Security Administration Deputy Commissioner Nancy Berryhill
All state governors including: North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum
All city mayors including: Bradenton, FL, Mayor Wayne H. Poston
All members of Congress including: Florida Representative Francis Rooney
All law enforcement officials including: Bradenton, FL, Police Chief Melanie Bevan
All military leaders including: Defense Secretary James Mattis / General Darren W. McDew, Commander of U.S. Transportation Command
Leaders of nations around the world including: Mauritania’s President Mohamed Aziz and Prime Minister Yahya Hademine
For the peace of Jerusalem

PRAYER FOR THE PEOPLE / CITIZENS

PRAYER FOR THE MEDIA

PRAYER FOR CURRENT EVENTS AROUND THE WORLD

– For calm to prevail in Israel where one person was killed and over 200 wounded in border protests
– For the comfort of the families of 6 people killed in a plane crash in Arizona
– For the comfort of the families of 6 people killed in a mudslide in Japan

PRAYER REQUESTS

Brother Bushebi
bless his ministry with Bibles for new Christians; provide for the orphans and widows; bless them with finances for ministry

Oltar
Heal all pain in his body

Jnbaptiste
be with his wife and daughter while they are away from him; deliver them from temptation

THOSE WHO HAVE ACCEPTED CHRIST AS SAVIOR

Ntenga
Ezekiel
Jairo

THOSE WHO HAVE RECOMMITTED THEIR LIVES TO CHRIST

Kizzy
Anne
Yohannes

DEVOTIONAL READING: “The Return of the Lord,” by Billy Graham

Philippians 3:20 says, “Our homeland is in heaven, where our Savior the Lord Jesus Christ is; and we are looking forward to his return…”

The Scriptures indicate that we are living in man’s day. But there is coming a day that will be called the Day of the Lord. In the midst of hopelessness, there is hope! And that hope is centered in the God-man, the Lord Jesus Christ. Now the will of man runs riot in the earth. Then the will of the Lord will alone be done. Until that time, we are under orders from the King of kings to proclaim His message. When we engage in evangelism, we are obeying His great command to “go and proclaim.” In doing so, we are hastening the day of His return.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

Now, if you do not know Jesus Christ as your Savior, allow me to show you how you can place your faith and trust in Him for Salvation from sin and Hell.

First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”

Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”

Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.”

Now that is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.

Romans 10:9 & 13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved… For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the Cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your Salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. I am sorry for my sins, and today I choose to turn from my sins. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. I trust Jesus Christ as my Savior and I choose to follow Him as Lord from this day forward. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.

If you just trusted Jesus Christ as your Saviour, and you prayed that prayer and meant it from your heart, I declare to you that based upon the Word of God, you are now saved from Hell and you are on your way to Heaven. Welcome to the family of God! I want to congratulate you on doing the most important thing in life and that is receiving Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour. For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”

Until next time, May the Lord Bless You!

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