Their Own Desires

Their Own Desires By Kirk Hunt

For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables.

2 Timothy 4:3-4 NKJV

 

The classic strategy of a swindler is to promise “something for nothing.” The desires and lusts betray the “victim” more powerfully than the confidence man or woman. Unfortunately, this applies to God’s people as much as anyone else.

 

If you want anything more than God, it is a lust. If you want something enough to alter or deliberately misinterpret God’s Word, it is a lust. The desires for control, ego or status can be lusts, just like money, sex or power.

 

And there is always someone out there who will tell you what you want to hear. False teachers (read: con artists) will gear their lessons to the biggest paychecks, not your well-being or Godliness. Local or national, near or far, the false teachers we heap up for ourselves preach false stories that lead to destruction.

 

Why do you want what you want? What does the Bible say about what you want? What does the Bible say about how you are working to get what you want? The honest answers to these questions will tell you what you need to know about your desires.

 

Read and study the Bible yourself. Compare every “teacher” you hear to the Bible, our one true source. Do not let your own desires lead you astray.

 

Think: My own desires and lusts will lead me astray, if I let them.

 

Pray: “Lord, help me keep my desires on You.”

 

Copyright © April 2017, Kirk Hunt

This devotional is brought to you courtesy of CadreMen Press. You can purchase a copy of Blessed and Blessing: Devotionals For Gospel Champions from your favorite bookseller or directly from CadreMen Press.

Free In The Truth

Free In The Truth By Kirk Hunt

Then Jesus said to those Jews who believed Him, “If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”

John 8:31–32 NKJV

Lots of folks try to sell you the “secrets” of freedom. There are other folks who claim that they alone know the truth. Only Jesus and the Word of God have the truth, or can truly set you free. Everything else is either an error or a con.

The truth is not free. The price of truth is a lifetime of reading (studying) and thinking about (meditating on) God’s Word. Knowing God’s Word, even imperfectly, leads to more and greater freedom than you can imagine. Jesus wants you to abide in God’s Word.

Do not be intimidated by Scripture. Set aside a regular time (preferably daily) and read your Bible. Then think about how it applies to your life. You do not need a Theology degree to begin hearing everything God wants to say to you.

Suggestion: For a week, spend 10 minutes a day less on social media, and 10 minutes a day more on Scripture. You will be shocked at the difference it will make in your understanding of God’s Word and His truth.

Jesus’ words (in red) are simple. “Study my Word…the truth shall make you free.” No one with a Bible is locked out of real truth.

Real disciples abide in God’s Word (Scripture). Knowing God’s Word gives you the truth. The truth makes you free.

Are you free yet?

Think: God’s Word makes me free. Do I seek His Word?

Pray: “Lord, help me to love Your truth and righteousness.”

 

Copyright © February 2017, Kirk Hunt

This devotional is brought to you courtesy of CadreMen Press. You can purchase a copy of Blessed and Blessing: Devotionals For Gospel Champions from your favorite bookseller or directly from CadreMen Press.

Believe The Truth

Believe The Truth By Kirk Hunt

And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie, that they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness.

2 Thessalonians 2:11-12 NKJV

Apostle Paul wrote 2 Thessalonians to warn God’s people to love the truth and reject lies. The truth is often simpler and less complicated than the lie. The problem is that the lie appeals to something sinful in us.

All too short a time after the establishment of the Church at Thessaloniki, someone was teaching that Jesus had already returned and raptured His Church. Paul spoke against this apostasy but then addressed the deeper issue of loving the truth.

Paul states it is important for God’s people to cultivate a love for the truth. He states just as clearly that men and women can take “pleasure in unrighteousness.” Which do you choose; truth or unrighteousness?

Addicts believe the drug is a benefit. Adulterers believe in their reasons to lie and betray. Swindlers believe the money in your account is theirs, rather than yours. Of course, there are subtler ways to believe a lie, rather than the truth.

Do you love the truth, rather than a lie? Are you willing to believe a lie and be damned? The choice is binary. Either you seek God’s truth or you love the enemy’s lies. Believing the lie means accepting a delusion that leads to condemnation.

Believing the lie requires that you set aside the facts and data. Loving the truth makes it easier to spot the lies. Seek His righteousness. It is easier in the long-run.

Think: Do I really seek the truth, or do I prefer unrighteousness?

Pray: “Lord, help me to love Your truth and righteousness.”

 

Copyright © January 2017, Kirk Hunt

This devotional is brought to you courtesy of CadreMen Press. You can purchase a copy of Blessed and Blessing: Devotionals For Gospel Champions from your favorite bookseller or directly from CadreMen Press.

The King’s Actions

The King’s Actions By Kirk Hunt

Then Herod, when he saw that he was deceived by the wise men, was exceedingly angry; and he sent forth and put to death all the male children who were in Bethlehem and in all its districts, from two years old and under, according to the time which he had determined from the wise men.

Matthew 2:17 NKJV

King Herod actions cannot be seen as anything other than ruthless, cruel and monstrous. He ordered the death of every male child in Bethlehem and the surrounding areas. His purpose in murdering babies? Preserving his station and power.

Warned through a dream from God, the wise men outwitted and outmaneuvered Herod. Herod then resorted to brute force to achieve his ends. From his position of power and wealth, Herod delivered death to the cradles and cribs of Bethlehem.

The result? God’s omniscience and omnipotence again thwarted Herod. Jesus and His family found safety in Egypt. Herod could never have overthrown the building of God’s Kingdom, but he tried.

The massacre of the innocents is not all that is recorded of Herod’s reign. Herod established the Herodian Dynasty. He also re-built the Second Temple, expanded the Temple complex, and brought water to Jerusalem.

Herod’s construction projects and political accomplishments are not the mainstay of his legacy. Instead, he is remembered as a murderous, blood-soaked tyrant who impoverished his own people.

What actions are you taking? Are they part of building God’s Kingdom? When you stand before God, the True King, what will He say of your actions?

 

Think: Are my actions designed to build God’s Kingdom, or something else?

Pray: “Lord, help me to take the actions that build Your Kingdom.”

 

Copyright © December 2016, Kirk Hunt

This devotional is brought to you courtesy of CadreMen Press. You can purchase a copy of Blessed and Blessing: Devotionals For Gospel Champions from your favorite bookseller or directly from CadreMen Press.

The King’s Intent

The King’s Intent By Kirk Hunt

Now when they had departed, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream, saying, “Arise, take the young Child and His mother, flee to Egypt, and stay there until I bring you word; for Herod will seek the young Child to destroy Him.”

Matthew 2:13 NKJV

 

It turns out that King Herod had villainous intent. He did not intend to worship Jesus. Instead, he wanted to murder Jesus in the cradle, as a potential rival.

 

King Herod’s intent conflicted with God’s intent. Despite his position and power, Herod was frustrated in His purpose and Jesus lived. The King of Kings’ intent was realized.

 

Today is no different than yesterday. Men and women of power and influence try to frustrate the plans of God. Now, as then, the true King’s purpose will come to pass. The question is whether or not you will follow the true King’s intent.

 

God could have stationed literal angels around Joseph, Mary and Jesus, but He did not. God could have caused earthly zealots to protect Jesus and His family, but He did not. Instead, God told Joseph to take action. Obediently, Joseph gathered his family and escaped into Egypt.

 

We are called to take action per God’s intent. Too often we worry about what others will, will not or should do. God’s people should be quick to obey their true King. Follow God’s intent, especially when it means our actions are contrary to what we or others intend.

 

Think: Do I follow God’s intent or someone else’s?

Pray: “Lord, help me to have Your intent for everyone around me.”

 

Copyright © November 2016, Kirk Hunt

This devotional is brought to you courtesy of CadreMen Press. You can purchase a copy of Blessed and Blessing: Devotionals For Gospel Champions from your favorite bookseller or directly from CadreMen Press.

Do You Persecute?

Do You Persecute? By Kirk Hunt

Therefore, indeed, I send you prophets, wise men, and scribes: some of them you will kill and crucify, and some of them you will scourge in your synagogues and persecute from city to city

Matthew 23:34 NKJV
Read also Matthew 23: 31-36

 

Neither foreigners nor pagans persecuted any of the Old Testament prophets. Their own supposedly devout countrymen and kinsmen tortured and murdered them. Why? The greater your sin, the harder it is to hear the truth. Just ask Cheney, Goodman and Schwerner.

 

The prophets, scribes and others called God’s people back from sin and error. Often they were met with violent opposition. Even when Jesus walked the earth, men and women often met God’s truth with unrighteous responses.

 

James, Andrew and Michael left the safety of their homes to help register men and women to vote in their local elections. Instead of being congratulated for their American spirit they were brutalized and murdered under the cover of darkness. The very men (and women) charged with keeping them safe participated in the heinous act or protected the perpetrators.

 

The terrorists were American sons, born and bred on American soil. Their targets? Other Americans born and bred just as they were. Sort of.

 

Jesus was sent to the Cross for healing the sick then preaching grace and truth. Here in America, the land of my fathers, truth has also been met with violence and murder. Still, many brave souls continue to speak out God’s truth.

 

Roman hands may have swung the hammers, but it was Jewish priests and leaders who sought Jesus’ blood. What is your response? Do you persecute truth-tellers or do you respond in God’s grace?

 

Think: Do I encourage those who speak God’s truth, or do I persecute them?

 

Pray: “Lord, help me to hear Your truth and respond with grace and humility.”

 

Copyright © October 2016, Kirk Hunt

 

This devotional is brought to you courtesy of CadreMen Press. You can purchase a copy of Blessed and Blessing: Devotionals For Gospel Champions from your favorite bookseller or directly from CadreMen Press.

Which Voices Are Speaking?

Which Voices Are Speaking? By Kirk Hunt

 

And the Lord said to me, “The prophets prophesy lies in My name. I have not sent them, commanded them, nor spoken to them; they prophesy to you a false vision, divination, a worthless thing, and the deceit of their heart.

Jeremiah 14:14 NKJV

 

To my dismay, people I know, treasure and respect make poor choices and take disreputable actions. Despite what I know they know, their actions conflict with what I know of their character. It seems that there are voices in their lives that lead them down these unworthy paths.

 

The false prophets of Jeremiah’s era assured the nation of Judah that their continuing sin and corruption would not be held against them. Perhaps, the Babylonian conquest could have been averted, had Judah repented and returned to God. The voices of the false prophets convinced Judah to remain in their sinful ways, and the great captivity fell on the nation.

 

There are voices in my life as well. I trust, or trusted, certain men and women to speak into my life. Now, sometimes retroactively, I screen their words through Scripture. I am too often surprised at how poorly their words compare to the Word of God.

 

True prophets speak God’s truth. Their voices match Scripture. Their only agenda is to speak what God says.

 

You and I have voices, past and present, speaking to our hearts, minds and souls. Only the true prophets should be listened to. The routes you follow accurately report which voices you hear.

 

Think: The voices I listen to must agree with Scripture.

 

Pray: “Lord, help me to hear only Your voice.”

 

 

Copyright © June 2016, Kirk Hunt

This devotional is a ministry of http://devotionals.cadremenpress.com.

 

The Testimony Of Scars

The Testimony Of Scars By Kirk Hunt

 

The other disciples therefore said to him, “We have seen the Lord.”

So he said to them, “Unless I see in His hands the print [scars] of the nails, and put my finger into the print [scars] of the nails, and put my hand into His side, I will not believe.”

John 20:25 NKJV

 

Thomas wanted proof. Like the other disciples, he knew for certain Jesus had died on the Cross. Now, he wanted the same kind of certainty that Jesus again lived. He wanted to see and touch the scars of the living, breathing Jesus.

 

Enough hurt, pain and loss will rattle the confidence, or drain hope from, even those with iron wills and steel souls. Too often, the words of others mean nothing in those dark moments of distress. Only the testimony of scars can speak to those who seem to have lost everything.

 

“See? Jesus brought me through the same crisis.” “His Spirit carried me when I got the same late-night call.” “His grace healed me of the same illness.”

 

God’s people too often hide their scars. By hiding them, we also hide the evidence of God’s power and restoration in our lives. Only survivors have scars. Survivors speak with an authority that exceeds all others.

 

Thomas finally got his living proof of the resurrected Jesus. You also have proof of the resurrected Jesus. His power has brought you through. Your scars are irrefutable proof of His power and authority in the real world.

 

Think: My scars are irrefutable proof of God’s power and supremacy in my life.

 

Pray: “Lord, help me to use my scars to testify of You.”

 

 

Copyright © February 2016, Kirk Hunt

This devotional is a ministry of http://devotionals.cadremenpress.com.