For All Nations ( by Carley Evans )

God declares, “My house is a house of prayer for all nations.” (Isaiah 56:7, NIV)

When mankind lives in close proximity, they have the same language with “a common speech” (Genesis 11:1) They work together to build a tower to reach heaven so as “to make a name for [themselves].” (Genesis 11:4) With a common language, the evil of which mankind is capable is unlimited. God is not pleased, and confounds their plans by “confusing their language so they do not understand each other.” Then He “scatters them from there all over the earth.” (Genesis 11:7,8)

First, a common language, dialect and even culture. Then, many languages. Finally, many dialects and cultures resulting in a world divided.

Yet, God has another plan. He plans to bring all nations together again under one head, that is Christ Jesus.

Jesus Himself says, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to Me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I Am with you always, to the very end of the age.” (Matthew 28:18-20)

Heavenly Father, thank You that You love all cultures — that You created all languages and dialects; that You speak in all tongues so that anyone may understand Your Word. Help us to take the gospel message to every people everywhere. In Jesus’ Name, amen.


Remember Christ Jesus ( by Carley Evans )

“Be strong,” writes Paul to Timothy, who is both his spiritual brother and his spiritual son, “in the grace that is in Christ Jesus.” Paul encourages Timothy to “remember Jesus Christ.” (2 Timothy 2:8)

I tip my hat to Frank Viola, who speaks eloquently about Jesus being the solution to all of our problems; and how all of our problems originate in our looking for something higher, deeper and beyond Jesus. Mr. Viola catches my attention — he’s correct. Paul tells us the same truth — that Jesus is all we require if what we desire is to know the One true God.

Therefore, Paul reminds us to avoid “quarreling about words; it is of no value, and only ruins those who listen.” (2 Timothy 2:14) Instead, Paul tells us “to do [our] best to present [ourselves] to God as ones approved, workmen who do not need to be ashamed and who correctly handle the Word of Truth.” (2 Timothy 2:15)

And the Word of Truth is the gospel; and “God’s Word is not chained.” (2 Timothy 2:9) “Endure everything for the sake of the elect, that they too may obtain the salvation that is in Christ Jesus.” (2 Timothy 2:10) In the sum of all truths, the most important is: “Remember Jesus Christ.” (2 Timothy 2:8)

Faithless (by Carley Evans)

Jesus wants to know how long He’s going to need to bear with this “faithless generation” surrounding Him. His disciples are incapable of casting a spirit from a child — this spirit “seizes [the boy], throws him down” making him “foam and grind his teeth and become rigid.” (Mark 9:18) The parent assumes Jesus’ disciples are capable of performing the same healing miracles as Jesus, but they are not able to drive this spirit from this child.

When the spirit sees Jesus, “immediately it convulses the boy.” (Mark 9:20) The spirit is fully aware of Jesus’ true identity. Jesus asks the boy’s father a bit of medical history — how long has this been going on? Perhaps He even asks what happens during these seizures for the father tells Jesus of the boy being tossed into fire or water by the spirit.

Then, suddenly doubting Jesus’ power — after all, Jesus’ disciples were inept — the father says, “But if You can do anything, have compassion on us and help us.” (Mark 9:22)

And Jesus says, “If you can!” then declares that “all things are possible for one who believes.” (Mark 9:23)

And the father cries, likely in utter despair, “I believe; help my unbelief!” (Mark 9:24)

The smartest response ever is to verbalize belief and then admit to doubt. Believe as you can, but recognize that faith comes from God’s hand; it is not self-generated or even self-sustained.

Dear Father God, thank You for Your willingness to heal us. Thank You for helping us to believe when we are filled with doubts — doubts about ourselves and doubts about You. In Jesus’ Name, amen.