Archive for the ‘Justice’ Category

August 2nd, 2015

Behold My Servant!

“Behold my servant, whom I uphold, my chosen, in whom my soul delights; I have put my Spirit upon him; he will bring forth justice to the nations. He will not cry aloud or lift up his voice, or make it heard in the street; a bruised reed he will not break, and a faintly burning wick he will not quench; he will faithfully bring forth justice. He will not grow faint or be discouraged till he has established justice in the earth; and the coastlands wait for his law.” Isaiah 42:1-4 (ESV)

Isaiah 40 marks a transition in the writings of Isaiah from warnings about exile to words of comfort in exile. The people of God have now been conquered by the Babylonians, as foretold in the previous chapters, and now Isaiah offers them a message of hope that actually foreshadows a greater hope for all of us. In chapter 42, we find the first of four “Servant Songs” in this epic prophetic work that promise the restoration of the Jewish people and foreshadow a coming messiah, who will achieve greater things for the good of the nations. This “chosen servant” will carry the favor of God and His Spirit and will establish justice upon the earth.

What an incredible message this is! When you look at this world and you see all of the injustice that exists, know that we are not without hope as the people of God in Babylonian captivity were not without hope. We have hope in this coming servant, Jesus Christ. He will establish justice and hold all of mankind accountable for their response to the one, true God of Israel and for their stewardship over what He has created.

When you see injustice, do not lose heart. The Lord has not forgotten us, for His Son suffered far greater injustice than we can see or imagine so that you and I could experience peace.

Grace and peace,

Jared Richard
Pastor of Mobilization & Young Adults (Online Devotional Guest Author)
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/jaredrichard

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Sunday, August 2nd, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Isaiah, Jesus, Justice.
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July 23rd, 2015

The Lord is Our Defender

“For the LORD will have compassion on Jacob and will again choose Israel, and will set them in their own land, and sojourners will join them and will attach themselves to the house of Jacob. And the peoples will take them and bring them to their place, and the house of Israel will possess them in the LORD’s land as male and female slaves. They will take captive those who were their captors, and rule over those who oppressed them.” Isaiah 14:1-2 (ESV)

The Lord is our defender. Sometimes in the midst of what we see to be injustice, we try to take matters into our own hands and fix the situation on our own. This kind of mentality, however, fails to appreciate the sovereignty of God and his orchestrating of all things for His glory and our good. If we are able to get ourselves out of a troubling situation, then we receive the glory for it. If, however, we rely upon the Lord to deliver us and He does so miraculously, in ways we could have never even imagined, then He alone receives the glory.

Do you allow the Lord to defend you, or do you try to defend yourself? When someone says something negative against you, do you try to explain it away or are you so blameless in the situation that people will eventually come to see the falsity of those statements? Are you so secure in the Lord, that fixing the words of people takes a back seat to pleasing the Lord?

We must be careful to not “defend” ourselves out of learning what God is trying to teach us in difficult moments. Rather, in the midst of these times, continue to seek the Lord and trust that when the time is right He will deliver you and, further, have made you a better follower of Christ.

Grace and peace,

Jared Richard
Pastor of Mobilization & Young Adults (Online Devotional Guest Author)
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/jaredrichard

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Thursday, July 23rd, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Isaiah, Justice, Sovereignty.
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July 8th, 2015

Justice and Mercy

“Give justice to the weak and the fatherless; maintain the right of the afflicted and the destitute. Rescue the weak and the needy; deliver them from the hand of the wicked.” Psalm 82:3-4 (ESV)

Imagine being transferred instantly before the throne of God. You are standing before God right now and you fall on your face before God and He asks you to give an account for your treatment of others. Where would that place you in the area of God’s approval and affirmation? How would you measure up to God’s standard of perfection?

God is a God of justice. And yes, God is a God of mercy. Without God’s justice, mercy would not exist. Without God’s mercy, justice would not exist. God declared His justice on your sin when Jesus took upon God’s wrath for your sin on the cross. God demonstrated His mercy by providing for the forgiveness of your sin. How will you treat others in light of what God has done for you?

  • “‘Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy.’” Matt 5:7 (ESV)
  • “‘Judge not, that you be not judged. For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and with the measure you use it will be measured to you.’” Matt 7:1-2 (ESV)

Our tendency is to use binoculars when judging our lives and using a microscope when judging the lives of others. Thank God for His mercy. God wants our conversation and our conduct to reflect the mercy we have received from Him. Treat others with the same mercy you have received from God. Rescue the weak and the needy.

Riding HIS Wave,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Wednesday, July 8th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Justice, Mercy, Psalms.
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May 6th, 2015

Keep the Faith

“So Saul died for his breach of faith. He broke faith with the Lord in that he did not keep the command of the Lord, and also consulted a medium, seeking guidance. He did not seek guidance from the Lord. Therefore the Lord put him to death and turned the kingdom over to David the son of Jesse.” 1 Chronicles 10:13-14 (ESV)

Where do you turn for guidance? What is your source for knowing God’s will? Saul drifted from God and forfeited his faith through his willful disobedience. Instead of seeking God for guidance, he consulted a medium. Instead of keeping the command of the Lord, Saul went his own way. He did not keep the faith. As a result, the Lord allowed Saul to be put to death and gave the kingdom to David.

You have the capacity to choose how you will live your life. You can embrace the way of selfishness and choose the way that satisfies your personal ambition and fleshly cravings or you can choose the way of the Lord. You can bypass the faith and take paths that are contrary to the will of God or you can seek the Lord and obey His promptings. The Apostle Paul, in his final letter to Timothy, affirmed the heavenly reward of keeping the faith.

  • “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Henceforth there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will award to me on that Day, and not only to me but also to all who have loved his appearing.” 2 Timothy 4:7-8 (ESV)

Fight the good fight. Finish the race. Keep the faith. The Lord will award you with the crown of righteousness.

Riding HIS Wave,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Wednesday, May 6th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category 1 Chronicles, Justice, Saul.
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August 2nd, 2012

Behold My Servant!

“Behold my servant, whom I uphold, my chosen, in whom my soul delights; I have put my Spirit upon him; he will bring forth justice to the nations. He will not cry aloud or lift up his voice, or make it heard in the street; a bruised reed he will not break, and a faintly burning wick he will not quench; he will faithfully bring forth justice. He will not grow faint or be discouraged till he has established justice in the earth; and the coastlands wait for his law.” Isaiah 42:1-4 (ESV)

Isaiah 40 marks a transition in the writings of Isaiah from warnings about exile to words of comfort in exile. The people of God have now been conquered by the Babylonians, as foretold in the previous chapters, and now Isaiah offers them a message of hope that actually foreshadows a greater hope for all of us. In chapter 42, we find the first of four “Servant Songs” in this epic prophetic work that promise the restoration of the Jewish people and foreshadow a coming messiah, who will achieve greater things for the good of the nations. This “chosen servant” will carry the favor of God and His Spirit and will establish justice upon the earth.

What an incredible message this is! When you look at this world and you see all of the injustice that exists, know that we are not without hope as the people of God in Babylonian captivity were not without hope. We have hope in this coming servant, Jesus Christ. He will establish justice and hold all of mankind accountable for their response to the one, true God of Israel and for their stewardship over what He has created.

When you see injustice, do not lose heart. The Lord has not forgotten us, for His Son suffered far greater injustice than we can see or imagine so that you and I could experience peace.

Chronological Bible Reading Plan: (Day 207:  Isaiah 40-43)

Grace and peace,

Jared Richard
Associate Pastor (Online Devotional Guest Author)
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/jaredrichard

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Thursday, August 2nd, 2012 at 1:00 am
Category Isaiah, Jesus, Justice.
Interact No Comments
July 23rd, 2012

The Lord is Our Defender

“For the LORD will have compassion on Jacob and will again choose Israel, and will set them in their own land, and sojourners will join them and will attach themselves to the house of Jacob. And the peoples will take them and bring them to their place, and the house of Israel will possess them in the LORD’s land as male and female slaves. They will take captive those who were their captors, and rule over those who oppressed them.” Isaiah 14:1-2 (ESV)

The Lord is our defender. Sometimes in the midst of what we see to be injustice, we try to take matters into our own hands and fix the situation on our own. This kind of mentality, however, fails to appreciate the sovereignty of God and his orchestrating of all things for His glory and our good. If we are able to get ourselves out of a troubling situation, then we receive the glory for it. If, however, we rely upon the Lord to deliver us and He does so miraculously, in ways we could have never even imagined, then He alone receives the glory.

Do you allow the Lord to defend you, or do you try to defend yourself? When someone says something negative against you, do you try to explain it away or are you so blameless in the situation that people will eventually come to see the falsity of those statements? Are you so secure in the Lord, that fixing the words of people takes a back seat to pleasing the Lord?

We must be careful to not “defend” ourselves out of learning what God is trying to teach us in difficult moments. Rather, in the midst of these times, continue to seek the Lord and trust that when the time is right He will deliver you and, further, have made you a better follower of Christ.

Chronological Bible Reading Plan: (Day 197:  Isaiah 13-17)

Grace and peace,

Jared Richard
Associate Pastor (Online Devotional Guest Author)
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/jaredrichard

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Monday, July 23rd, 2012 at 1:00 am
Category Isaiah, Justice, Sovereignty.
Interact No Comments
July 8th, 2012

Justice and Mercy

“Give justice to the weak and the fatherless; maintain the right of the afflicted and the destitute. 4 Rescue the weak and the needy; deliver them from the hand of the wicked.” Psalm 82:3-4 (ESV)

Imagine being transferred instantly before the throne of God. You are standing before God right now and you fall on your face before God and He asks you to give an account for your treatment of others. Where would that place you in the area of God’s approval and affirmation? How would you measure up to God’s standard of perfection?

God is a God of justice. And yes, God is a God of mercy. Without God’s justice, mercy would not exist. Without God’s mercy, justice would not exist. God declared His justice on your sin when Jesus took upon God’s wrath for your sin on the cross. God demonstrated His mercy by providing for the forgiveness of your sin. How will you treat others in light of what God has done for you?

  • “‘Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy.’” Matt 5:7 (ESV)
  • “‘Judge not, that you be not judged. 2 For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and with the measure you use it will be measured to you.’” Matt 7:1-2 (ESV)

Our tendency is to use binoculars when judging our lives and using a microscope when judging the lives of others. Thank God for His mercy. God wants our conversation and our conduct to reflect the mercy we have received from Him. Treat others with the same mercy you have received from God. Rescue the weak and the needy.

Chronological Bible Reading Plan: (Day 182:  Obadiah; Psalms 82-83)

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Sunday, July 8th, 2012 at 1:00 am
Category Justice, Mercy, Psalms.
Interact No Comments
May 6th, 2012

Keep the Faith

“So Saul died for his breach of faith. He broke faith with the Lord in that he did not keep the command of the Lord, and also consulted a medium, seeking guidance. 14 He did not seek guidance from the Lord. Therefore the Lord put him to death and turned the kingdom over to David the son of Jesse.” 1 Chronicles 10:13-14 (ESV)

Where do you turn for guidance? What is your source for knowing God’s will? Saul drifted from God and forfeited his faith through his willful disobedience. Instead of seeking God for guidance, he consulted a medium. Instead of keeping the command of the Lord, Saul went his own way. He did not keep the faith. As a result, the Lord allowed Saul to be put to death and gave the kingdom to David.

You have the capacity to choose how you will live your life. You can embrace the way of selfishness and choose the way that satisfies your personal ambition and fleshly cravings or you can choose the way of the Lord. You can bypass the faith and take paths that are contrary to the will of God or you can seek the Lord and obey His promptings. The Apostle Paul, in his final letter to Timothy, affirmed the heavenly reward of keeping the faith.

  • “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Henceforth there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will award to me on that Day, and not only to me but also to all who have loved his appearing.” 2 Timothy 4:7-8 (ESV)

Fight the good fight. Finish the race. Keep the faith. The Lord will award you with the crown of righteousness.

Chronological Bible Reading Plan: (Day 119:  1 Chronicles 7-10)

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Sunday, May 6th, 2012 at 1:00 am
Category 1 Chronicles, Justice, Saul.
Interact No Comments
April 2nd, 2007

Justice

“But the chief priests stirred up the crowd to have Pilate release Barabbas instead.” Mark 15:11 (NIV)

Have you ever encountered injustice? Have you ever been treated unfairly? I think we have all been there. It hurts! The scars serve as a constant reminder. In our verse today, we find a word that compels us to contemplate. It is the soothing word, “instead.” Let me take this punishment instead of you. Allow me to receive this penalty instead of you. Jesus will be flogged and crucified instead of Barabbas. The innocent man dies in his place. The guilty man goes free. Jesus receives what he doesn’t deserve while Barabbas receives what he doesn’t deserve. Jesus receives death! Barabbas receives life! Is that justice? Should the guilty go free?

It depends who takes the initiative. “But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us”(Rm. 5:8 NIV). Christ died instead of us! Yes, while we were still sinners! How can you demonstrate that kind of love? Who in your sphere of influence needs to know what “instead” looks like? Forgive instead of holding a grudge. Show acceptance instead of forging a gap. Offer help instead of ignoring the need. Appreciate Jesus instead of taking Him for granted. It’s your move!

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Pastor of Leadership & Pastoral Care

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Monday, April 2nd, 2007 at 5:00 am
Category Justice, Love.
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