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William MacDonald

When Jesus spoke these words, He was referring to a meeting of the church convened to deal with a sinning member who refuses to repent. Other efforts to handle the offender have failed and now he is brought before the church. If he still refuses to repent; he must be disfellowshipped. The Lord Jesus promises His presence at such a meeting called to deal with a matter of church discipline.

But the verse surely has a wider application. It is true wherever and whenever two or three are...

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William MacDonald

When we think of a heretic, we usually think of someone who holds and propagates views that are contrary to the great fundamental truths of the faith. We think of men like Arius, Montanus, Marcion and Pelagius who lived in the second and third centuries AD.

I do not propose to reject that definition of heretic but to broaden it. A heretic, in the New Testament sense, also includes anyone who obstinately promotes a teaching, even of secondary importance; that causes division in the...

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William MacDonald

God has irregulars in His army, and very often these are the ones who win the greatest victories. In their zeal for the Lord they seem eccentric. They use original methods instead of sticking to the traditional ones. They are always saying and doing the unexpected. They can murder the English language and violate every known rule of preaching and teaching, yet see great gains for God's kingdom. Often they are dramatic, even electrifying. People are shocked, but they never forget...

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Daily Devotional for August 10, 2022

The people said that it thundered (John 12:29).

William MacDonald

God had just spoken from heaven in clear, articulate tones. Some said that it thundered. They gave a naturalistic explanation for what was divine and miraculous. That is one attitude we can take toward miracles today. We can try to explain them away as nothing more than natural occurrences. Or we can say flatly that the age of miracles has passed. We can conveniently relegate them to a dispensational pigeonhole.

A third attitude is to go to the other extreme and claim to experience...

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William MacDonald

Picture Levi sitting at a table beside the highway, collecting taxes from those who passed by. If he was a typical tax-collector, he pocketed considerable sums of money instead of turning them in to the despised Roman government.

On this particular day Jesus passed by and said, "Follow me." A tremendous spiritual awakening took place in Levi's life. He saw his sins exposed. He realized the emptiness of his life. He heard the promise of better things. His response was immediate. "He...

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William MacDonald

These commandments of our Lord refer to our behavior toward all men, converted and unconverted, but we shall be thinking of them particularly in regard to financial dealings among individual Christians. It is sadly true that some of the most serious conflicts among believers arise over money matters. It shouldn't be so, but unfortunately the old adage still holds: when money comes in the door, love goes out the window.

A simple solution might be to forbid all financial dealings among...

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William MacDonald

In this exalted passage, the Messiah is describing some of the marvelous exchanges which He brings to those who receive Him. He gives beauty for ashes, joy for mourning, praise for heaviness.

We bring Him the ashes of a life burned out with pleasure, the ashes of a body ruined by liquor or drugs. We bring Him the ashes of wasted years in the wilderness, or the ashes of frustrated hopes and shattered dreams. And what do we get? He gives us beauty, the beauty of a dazzling bridal diadem....

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William MacDonald

Sometimes as I sit at the Lord's Supper, I have to ask myself, "What is the matter with me? How can I sit here and contemplate the passion of the Savior and not be melted in tears?"

An unknown poet faced the same questions; he wrote: "Am I a stone, and not a man, that I can stand,/ O Christ, beneath Thy cross,/ and number, drop by drop,/ Thy blood's slow loss,/ and yet not weep?/ Not so the sun and moon,/ which hid their faces in a midnight sky,/ while earth convulsed and groaned -...

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William MacDonald

Games 1:20) The picture is not an unfamiliar one. A church business meeting is in progress. A decision must be made. It is not about some great doctrine of the faith, but perhaps about building an addition, or painting the kitchen, or distributing some funds. A disagreement develops, anger rises, tempers flare and shouting erupts. A few strongminded vocal individuals finally prevail, then leave with the delusion that they have forwarded the work of God. Whatever else they have forwarded,...

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William MacDonald

The Lord Himself is righteous and loves to see His people acting in a righteous manner. He is pleased when believers instinctively make choices that are consistent with divine or moral law.

But it is not always easy in a world such as ours. We are constantly tempted to compromise in the areas of morals and ethics. Some or the temptations are blatant; others are insidious. It takes both discernment and backbone to walk a straight line.

It would not be possible to catalog all the...

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William MacDonald

What an interesting insight! The great, transcendent God doesn't take pleasure in the legs of a man!

We can think of this in connection with the world of athletics. The track star, lithe and swift, crossing the finish line with hands flung high in victory. The basketball player, streaking down the court to sink the winning basket. The football hero, muscular and strong, irresistibly plunging through the line.

The crowd goes wild. They are jumping, shouting, cheering (or...

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William MacDonald

Peter, James and John were on the mount with Jesus. Sensing that this was a significant moment in history and desiring to somehow preserve its glory, Peter proposed erecting three booths - one each for Jesus, Moses and Elijah. This, of course, would have put the Lord on the same level as the two Old Testament saints. God thwarted the project by enveloping them in a cloud. Luke tells us that "they feared as they entered into the cloud."

They shouldn't have feared. It was a cloud of...

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William MacDonald

The combination of golden apples in a setting of silver is pleasingly appropriate. The two go together well. It is the same with a golden word spoken at just the proper time. "A man hath joy by the answer of his mouth: and a word spoken in due season, how good is it!" (Proverbs 15:23).

A veteran missionary lady is dying in the cancer ward, still conscious but too weak to talk. A godly elder goes to her bedside just as the evening visiting...

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William MacDonald

The greatest of all investments is the investment of one's life for Jesus Christ. The important considerations in any investment are the safety of the principal and the rate of return. Judged on this basis, no investment can compare with the life that's lived for God. The principal is absolutely safe because He is able to keep that which we have committed unto him (2 Timothy 1:12). As for the income, it boggles the mind by its immensity.

In...

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