S O A P

S. O. A. P. Here’s Your 90 second AM Devotional! S-cripture: Jeremiah 16:15 Jeremiah, the prophet of God, gives a promise to future Israelis. The topic had been pain, sorrow, and punishment for their sins throughout the book, but, if for only a moment, Jeremiah speaks of “Brighter Days Ahead!” O-bservation: Jeremiah, the prophet of God, gives a promise to future Israelis. The topic had been pain, sorrow, and punishment for their sins throughout the book, but, if for only a moment, Jeremiah speaks of “Brighter Days Ahead!” A-pplication: When you really think about it, there weren’t many “Brighter Days Ahead” for Israel throughout history until 1948, when it became an independent nation again. Jeremiah writes at the onset of the Babylonian captivity, and after that, the people of Israel were scattered around the world. Then, of course, during Jesus’ time and that of the writers of the New Testament, they were under strict Roman rule. So the Old Testament people of God knew very little of the good times after their Babylonian takeover. So what does it say of us today? I believe it’s a Word to all believers everywhere that no matter how bad your struggle is, “Brighter Days Ahead” are always a part of our...

S. O. A. P. Here’s Your 90 second AM Devotional! S-cripture: Jeremiah 13:11 “For as a belt is bound around the waist, so I bound all the people of Israel and all the people of Judah to me,” declares the Lord, “to be my people for my renown and praise and honor. But they have not listened.” O-bservation: God had instructed the prophet Jeremiah to buy a linen belt and tie it around his waist in this passage. When he did, God then told him to take the linen belt off and hide it in the crevice of the rocks in a city called Perath, and Jeremiah did. Sometime later, he told Jeremiah to find it, and when he did, it was filthy. God said, “I tied the people of Israel and Judah around me like that linen belt, but they have become filthy with their worship of idols. I made them for myself, but they wouldn’t listen to me.” A-pplication: Whenever one studies the book of Jeremiah, that person is quickly turned to the present-day sins of one’s own country. It’s hard to read scripture that is thousands of years old and not say, “How does this impact me right now?” I believe this particular passage is...

S. O. A. P. Here’s Your 90 second AM Devotional! S-cripture: John 14:1a Do not let your hearts be troubled. O-bservation: Here Jesus spoke to his disciples about ANXIETY. First, he said, “Don’t let your hearts be troubled!” He then told them that they believed in God, so they must believe in Him as well. Then He got them to look forward to where they were headed. He let them know that He was preparing a place for them in heaven and that eventually, they would join Him there. A-pplication: You can imagine the anxiety these disciples were facing as the time for Jesus’ crucifixion drew near. They had all left their jobs over three years earlier to follow Him, and there had definitely been more HIGHS than LOWS. However, they knew things were about to change. Jesus knew exactly how they were feeling as they were looking toward the future without Him. His message here is, “Anxiety Be Gone!” We are living in a time that none of us on the planet ever dreamed we’d ever face. We are facing a resurgence of the COVID-19 Virus with new variants. This has caused anxiety among young and old alike and has left people on the verge of suicide....

S. O. A. P. Here’s Your 90 second AM Devotional! S-cripture: John 13:38a Then Jesus answered, “Will you really lay down your life for me?” O-bservation: This was quite a discourse between Jesus and His disciples. He had told them that He was getting ready to leave them and where He was going they could not come. But then he said, “Later on you will follow.” Peter replied, “Why I can’t I come now, Lord? I’ll lay my life down for you!” Then Jesus said, “Will you really lay down your life for me?” A-pplication: This is a familiar passage to “Followers Of Jesus.” Peter promised to lay his life down for the Lord and Jesus responded, “Before the rooster crows, you will disown me three times.” And of course it happened, just like Jesus said it would. When I read this story, even in the other gospels, I always think, “Promises, Promises!” I’m not saying that as a judgement against Peter. That’s an easy call. I’m really saying it about me. How many promises have I made to the Lord and then broken? The difference between Peter and me is that my mistake was not recorded in the Holy Scripture for all Christians to read for the...

S. O. A. P. Here’s Your 90 second AM Devotional! S-cripture: Jeremiah 5:1 Go up and down the streets of Jerusalem, look around and consider, search through her squares. If you can find but one person who deals honestly and seeks the truth, I will forgive this city. O-bservation: This is not Abraham asking God if God would spare the city of Sodom if Abraham could find “Just One” righteous person. NO! Through the prophet Jeremiah, God asks the people of Jerusalem to find “Just One” person in the city who was righteous. If anyone could, he would spare the whole city. But, unfortunately, there were not 10 righteous people in all of Sodom, and in Jerusalem there wasn’t even “Just One!” A-pplication: When you jam foolishness down people’s throats for a long time, after a while, there’s no one left to defend the cause of the masses. In Jeremiah’s day, God had called him to be a prophet. And by that, the Lord meant Jeremiah was to uproot, tear down, destroy, and overthrow. But then he said, “After you’ve done that, I want you to build and to plant.” In other words, when righteousness is nowhere to be found, the man or woman of God has to...

S. O. A. P. Here’s Your 90 second AM Devotional! S-cripture: Jeremiah 4:18 “Your own conduct and actions have brought this on you. This is your punishment. How bitter it is! How it pierces to the heart!” O-bservation: In this passage, God calls the nation of Judah, particularly the city of Jerusalem, out for being unwilling to take responsibility for their own evil actions. Jeremiah the prophet was the mouth of God against His own beloved nation for their iniquities. He said, “Your own conduct and actions have brought this on you!” A-pplication: Like the people who dwelled in Judah of old, we in the western world have arrived at a place I call Living In The Age Of “It’s Not My Fault!” Irresponsibility is the devil’s dwelling place. He leads people there and then lives with them, hoping they will never leave. When people are irresponsible, it throws a city or nation into chaos. To take the onus off of themselves, they divert the attention of the masses onto something of far less importance so they themselves will feel less pointed at by God. LGBTQ, animal rights, and the silencing of people and their voices by big tech are just a few of the issues that divert...

S. O. A. P. Here’s Your 90 second AM Devotional! S-cripture: Jeremiah 1:19 “They will fight against you but will not overcome you, for I am with you and will rescue you,” declares the Lord. O-bservation: This entire chapter has to do with the call of the Lord upon Jeremiah’s life and where his future would take him with God’s hand upon his life. In the previous verse, God calls Jeremiah a fortified city his enemies would try and tear down. However, the Lord said, “They will come against you, but they will not overtake you, for I am with you to rescue you!” A-pplication: I have read this chapter so many times through the years because this was the chapter the Lord used to confirm His call upon my life in 1971. I always have this thought whenever I read this passage: It’s better to have God on your side than all the armies of the world. All it takes is the Lord Almighty to fight your battles. I’ve been up against some pretty tough foes in my life but never once has the One who called me left me. Sometimes, in a moment of fear, this calm, settled peace will begin to flood my soul like a...

S. O. A. P. Here’s Your 90 second AM Devotional! S-cripture: John 9:25 He replied, “Whether he is a sinner or not, I don’t know. One thing I do know. I was blind but now I see!” O-bservation: From Scripture, we know that this adult man was born blind and regularly begged from others. When Jesus saw him, He healed the man, and people were thrown into an uproar. The Pharisees were incensed that Jesus would heal the man on the Sabbath, which Jewish law forbids. The Pharisees asked the man’s parents if Jesus was a sinner, and they said, “Ask our son. He is of age.” When the Pharisees asked the man who had been healed if Jesus was a sinner, he replied, “I really don’t know if he’s a sinner or not, but one thing I do know, I was blind, but now I see!” A-pplication: Jesus never asks us to speak on subjects we know nothing about. He only asks us to give our testimony to those who are inquiring about Him. In other words, our mandate from the Lord has always been, “Just Tell Them What You Do Know!” I hold an earned doctorate from a leading Christian university, but there is so much...

S. O. A. P. Here’s Your 90 second AM Devotional! S-cripture: John 8:18 I am one who testifies for myself; my other witness is the father, who sent me. O-bservation: Earlier the Pharisees had questioned Jesus because He was the only one testifying of His own validity. Jesus told them that between them and Him, He was the only one that knew where He had come from and where He was going. Jesus told them that in their own law, the testimony of two witnesses would make a matter true. Then Jesus said He would stand and testify of Himself, and “Oh, By The Way, my other witness is God, My Father.” A-pplication: In modern terms, when Jesus said His other witness was God His Father, it was a “Drop the mic” moment. In other words, what else needs to be said after that? You and I are Jesus followers. That means that yes, we must stand and witness about His saving grace in our lives. That can be intimidating at times, but if we can remember that we have another witness who will validate our witness, it’s easier for us to take our stand because when we do, we can then also say, “Oh, By The Way,...

S. O. A. P. Here’s Your 90 second AM Devotional! S-cripture: 2 Kings 23:22 Neither in the days of the judges who led Israel nor in the days of the kings of Israel and the kings of Judah had any such Passover been observed. O-bservation: King Josiah’s associates had found the Book of the Law in the temple in Jerusalem. It had been lost for so long. All of the people of God had forgotten its mandates.  When Josiah’s leaders read the law to him, he heard his name read, which had been prophesied 300 years earlier in 1 Kings 13:2 by the Man of God from Bethel. It so radically changed Josiah that he re-instituted the Passover Feast after tearing down all of the places of idol worship throughout Judah. A-pplication: Josiah was so shocked that his name had been prophesied 300 years earlier in the Book of The Law that he decided without hesitation to “Go With God!” Yes, it was a huge risk because such compromise had flooded the moral fiber of Judah that there could have been an uprising from every level of leadership in the land. But that didn’t happen! Why? I believe Josiah made up his mind with such a vengeance to...