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Keeping Our Spiritual Edge

Our Daily Bread Ministries / Various Hosts
The Truth Network Radio
May 21, 2024 8:00 pm

Keeping Our Spiritual Edge

Our Daily Bread Ministries / Various Hosts

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May 21, 2024 8:00 pm

The Rocky movies tell the story of a raw boxer, fueled by never-say-die determination, who overcomes improbable odds to become heavyweight champion. In Rocky III, a now successful Rocky becomes impressed with his own achievements. Television commercials disrupt his time in the gym. The champ grows soft, and he’s knocked out by a challenger. The rest of the movie is Rocky’s attempt to regain his fighting edge.

In a spiritual sense, King Asa of Judah lost his fighting edge. Early in his reign, he relied on God in the face of daunting odds. As the mighty Cushites prepared to attack, Asa prayed, “Help us, Lord our God, for we rely on you, and in your name we have come against this vast army” (2 Chronicles 14:11). God answered his prayer, and Judah struck down and scattered their enemies (vv. 12-15).

Years later, Judah was threatened again. This time a complacent Asa ignored God and instead asked the king of Aram for help (16:2). It seemed to work. But God wasn’t pleased. The prophet Hanani told Asa that he’d stopped trusting God (vv. 7–8). Why hadn’t he relied on God now as he had then?

Our God is unfailingly reliable. His eyes “range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him” (v. 9). When we keep our spiritual edge—fully depending on God—we’ll experience His power.

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Welcome to today's encouragement from Our Daily Bread.

My name is Mike Whitmer and I call today's reading, Keeping Our Spiritual Edge. The Rocky movies tell the story of a raw boxer, fueled by never-say-die determination, who overcomes improbable odds to become heavyweight champion. In Rocky III, a now successful Rocky becomes impressed with his own achievements.

Shooting television commercials disrupt his time in the gym. The champ grows soft and he's knocked out by a challenger. The rest of the movie is Rocky's attempt to regain his fighting edge. In a spiritual sense, King Asa of Judah lost his fighting edge. Early in his reign, he relied on God in the face of daunting odds. As the mighty Cushites prepared to attack, Asa prayed in 2 Chronicles 14, Help us, Lord our God, for we rely on you, and in your name we have come against this vast army. God answered his prayer, and Judah struck down and scattered their enemies.

Years later, Judah was threatened again. This time, a complacent Asa ignored God and instead asked the king of Aram for help. It seemed to work, but God wasn't pleased.

The prophet Hanani told Asa that he'd stop trusting God. Why hadn't he relied on God now as he had then? Our God is unfailingly reliable. His eyes range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to Him.

When we keep our spiritual edge, fully depending on God, we'll experience His power. Today's Our Daily Bread devotional scripture reading is from 2 Chronicles 16, verses 1-9. In the thirty-sixth year of Asa's reign, Basha, king of Israel, went up against Judah and fortified Ramah to prevent anyone from leaving or entering the territory of Asa, king of Judah. Asa then took the silver and gold out of the treasuries of the Lord's temple and of his own palace and sent it to Ben-Hadad, king of Aram, who was ruling in Damascus. Let there be a treaty between me and you, he said, as there was between my father and your father.

See, I am sending you silver and gold. Now break your treaty with Basha, king of Israel, so he will withdraw from me. Ben-Hadad agreed with king Asa and sent the commanders of his forces against the towns of Israel. They conquered Eijon, Dan, Abel-Maim, and all the store cities of Naphtali. When Basha heard this, he stopped building Ramah and abandoned his work. Then king Asa brought all the men of Judah, and they carried away from Ramah the stones and timber Basha had been using.

With them he built up Geba and Mizpah. At that time, Hanani the seer came to Asa, king of Judah, and said to him, Because you relied on the king of Aram, and not on the Lord your God. The army of the king of Aram has escaped from your hand.

Were not the Cushites and Libyans a mighty army with great numbers of chariots and horsemen? Yet when you relied on the Lord, he delivered them into your hand. For the eyes of the Lord range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him.

You have done a foolish thing, and from now on you will be at war. Let's pray. Dear Jesus, may we rest in you more each day. In your name we pray. Amen. Today's encouragement was provided by Our Daily Bread Ministries.
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-05-21 21:17:49 / 2024-05-21 21:19:43 / 2

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