Biblegateway Verse of the Day

The Christian Need to be a Witness to Jews

         Normally, I use a free graphic I find that I feel summarizes what I'm going to say. Today, however, I want to use two verses to prove why authentic Christ-followers need to bless and sanctify Jews. Paul says in Romans, "To provoke them to jealousy." Why? If we are changed by our faith, it is a personal thing. And God, overall is personal, not impersonal as some suggest. If that was the case why did God call out to our forefathers Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob (aka Israel)? Moses records of Abraham's faith, saying, "Then he believed in the LORD; and He reckoned it to him as righteousness" (Genesis 15:6). Was this done before or after Abraham was circumcised?

By Benjamin H. Liles

The Girl behind the Red Rope (Book Review)


By Benjamin H. Liles

          When I saw that this book was being released, I knew I had to review it. It's not that I'm a fan of Ted Dekker. Actually, I tried reading a few of his books and they were hard for me to read. So I dove in, wanting to read this book simply because of who his co-writer was. This is his daughter's, Rachelle Dekker, book debut -- as far as I know. I know of Ted Dekker, but Rachelle, not so much. And here's the thing: I loved this book!

Christ's Love Casts Out Fear


By Benjamin H. Liles

          I have to ask myself why is being fearful the opposite of having God's perfect love? Is it possible to so love imperfectly that we get and become so afraid to do for others? I think it has more to do with not doing anything at all for others. In that sense of fear it stands that the selfish person wants nothing more than what they want and not normally for others. Paul writes to the church, saying, "For you did not receive a spirit of slavery that returns you to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!” (Romans 8:15).

Why I'm Done with One-Sided News: a Lie is still a Lie


By Benjamin H. Liles

          Justice is such an interesting word. On one hand it implies a legal term in which two sides come to mediate a sentence due for the person who has done wrong. But is there another meaning for this often misunderstood word? In 1828 Noah Webster provided tons of terms that we get our modern dictionaries and thesaurus's from. The word I'm looking at is the one for justice. It says of this word, "The virtue which consists in giving to every one what is his due; practical conformity to the laws and to principles of rectitude in the dealings of men with each other; honesty; Impartiality; equal distribution of right in expressing opinions; fair representation of facts respecting merit or demerit."

Zion (Aaron Shust Lyric Video)


Brief post edit by Benjamin H. Liles

          I want to explain why I'm making this post edit here. There was a point in my life I absolutely hated and was failing at history in high school. We were given the project, as students, to look at and get into our family histories. As it has happened, since those days I had been in high school I am now caretaker of my family's heritage and ancestry.

A Redesigned Life (Book Review)


By Benjamin H. Liles

          "Well, darling, it's that time of year again," she says to me as I slowly wake up. "Shake a leg, handsome, Spring cleaning time!" Ugh, those words, they mean moving furniture, clutter, and a possibility of having to, dare I say, throw out trash? I shudder pulling covers back over my head, daring to go back to sleep, and then she comes back in: "Benjamin Herrell!"

          "Okay, I'm up!" and I stomp out of bed.

Shift Your Thinking for a Deeper Faith (Book Review)


By Benjamin H. Liles

          Dean Del Sesto is a prominent author who's written several best sellers that include Shift Your Thinking for Success, Shift Points, and A Shift a Day for Your Best Year Yet. I would have to say after reading his latest book Shift Your Thinking for a Deeper Faith he's hitting notes that make it look the former way of living life in sinfulness and being and feeling defeated are things of the past. A new life in Christ means the person is transformed from the inside out and lives a victorious life even against the odds.

Breathe Again (Book Review)


By Benjamin H. Liles

          Niki Hardy writes with an abundance of humor about trials and tribulations we go through as people in need of healing and joy. With her book Breathe Again, Niki recounts times in her life, from her mother, her sister and even about her own life dealing with cancer. While she does so with a down-to-earth and easy going, shoot-straight-from-the-hip kind of style in her writing at least she's honest and open that we all can live the best life we absolutely can with God's grace.

Thanks to the Lord


By Benjamin H. Liles

          I saw something this morning, while reading, that I thought would be a good and loving word: "Let them give thanks to the Lord for his unfailing love and his wonderful deeds for mankind" (Psalm 107:8, 15, 21, 31). Everytime this verse is mentioned there are certain things mentioned before it: Those who "wandered" and "hungry and thirsty" (v. 4, 5), "Some sat in darkness" (v. 10), "Some became fools" (v. 17), "Some went out on the sea" (v. 23).

Back Roads to Belonging (Book Review)


By Benjamin H. Liles

          I want to paint a picture for you here: maybe you're a bit slow, possibly a bit "fluffy" around the middle, maybe not the smartest stack in the pile, or as some say, "A round peg in a square hole;" the point is made clear: "You're not wanted or desired here." Society does that to people. Pigeon-holing those they deem as weak. But God says, "I use the weak things of the world to confound the wise" (1 Corinthians 1:27). Even Jesus called twelve men, most of them fishermen to disciple them to reach out and be "fishers of men" (Matthew 4:19).

Falling Away


By Benjamin H. Liles

          I know that with a title like that some would be scratching their heads like, "Okay, what's up with that? Is he about to do the same thing as Joshua Harris and Marty Sampson in recent days?"

Actually, this concerns that. The verse of the day, which is allowed to run even on my site says, "And to the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write, ‘These things says the Amen, the Faithful and True Witness, the Beginning of the creation of God: Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me" (Revelation 3:14, 20).

Seeing God for Purity of Heart


By Benjamin H. Liles

          I absolutely love how Charles Haddon Spurgeon said this: "Believe on the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, and ye shall be saved. Whosoever here will now cast himself as a guilty worm flat on Jesus- whoever will throw himself into the arms of everlasting love, that man shall be accepted; he shall go from that door justified and forgiven, with his soul as sate as if he were in heaven, without the danger of its ever being lost. All this is through belief in Christ.." More or less, he's saying, "Forgive me, O Lord, a sinner!" (Luke 18:!3). For that taxpayer has more of a right to heaven than the self-righteous Pharisee.

A Stained Legacy: One


By Benjamin H. Liles

          The halls not only dimly lit by a shaded hue of what seemed to be medical stale, Matt Shinom stalked down the vast corridors of the Terminal. Hand up, coiled around a saber, drawn and ready, lights flicked on and off gently. Something ripe hung in the air, causing Matt to put his hand to his face. A silver moon hung outside, casting eerie glows upon the cavernous inside of the decaying, molding building. Nothing seemed right in his world. In fact...Ta-zing, a bullet ricocheted off a wall near Matt's right ear; he fell tumbling to the other side.

The Gryphon Heist (Book Review)


By Benjamin H. Liles

          I recently read this wonderful, great and heart-stopping, race against time novel James Hannibal wrote. The Gryphon Heist is one heck of a read, albeit in my opinion. But opinions do not go well in a world that is in need of facts. So, here are some facts readers ought to be aware of when it comes to picking up this book to read it. James Hannibal, from the back of the book, "is no stranger to secrets and adventure." From the moment I started reading this book, I absolutely could not put it down.

Sowing What You Reap


By Benjamin H. Liles

          I'm not real sure if I wrote about this topic in a while, but it needs to be said again. Sowing specific types of seed towards others comes back to you in the end. Paul tells the church in Galatia, "Do not be deceived: God is not to be mocked. Whatever a man sows, he will reap in return" (Galatians 6:7). A lot of people talk about karma, but it's not that when it comes from the Lord on high.

The String (Book Review)


By Benjamin H. Liles

          The way he stands there, looking serene, austere, intense, lips flat and pressed wearing a tuxedo, with a bit of tail covering his waist makes the orchestra nervous. He gets in position before the orchestra, facing them and then he starts giving them direction to play their piece. So the conductor normally plies his craft with the orchestra. Where am I going with this? Caleb Breakey, with his book The String does exactly that. 

Light From Distant Stars (Book Review)


By Benjamin H. Liles

          The latest book by Shawn Smucker, Light From Distant Stars, hits several notes of fictional writing that seem both majestic and tragic. I don't mean that in a bad or a mean way. His writing is spot on, in my honest opinion. But what I mean with my "majestic and tragic" comment is that for the main character Cohen Marah, he seems to have a hard time coming to terms with his father's death.

When You Need To Move A Mountain (Book Review)


By Benjamin H. Liles

          I don't know how many people ago through what I do in my prayer life. Because by large I feel a lot of the time my prayers are hard to pray, and also ineffective. However, Linda Evans Shepherd does a great job with this book to explain and show how we as followers of Christ can get better at praying. She lets us know there are different prayer types: prayers that are simply that and intercessory prayers, where you stand in the gap on behalf of others.

Everyone Who Lives by Faith


By Benjamin H. Liles

Paul tells us in the Romans 1:16 passage, "For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek." When Paul makes that comment in the verse, "for the Jew first and also for the Greek," he's not being derogatory in any sense. Because of the fact that salvation was to come for Israel, the Messiah would be Jewish, so it stands to reason salvation would come to them first. Then after that salvation comes to the rest who aren't Jewish, and at that time to the rest of the world, mainly the Greek and Roman world.

The Soul of an American President (Book Review)


By Benjamin H. Liles

          How do you start off talking about the faith of the leader of the free world? What would you say about a man who's silent prayers, to be the man in the position of being President over the United States? Dwight D. Eisenhower, also known as Ike, was such a man. However, before he became President of America, Eisenhower served as "a five-star general during World War II and also as supreme commander of the Allied Expeditionary Forces in Europe" (from Wikipedia).

Being a Child of God


By Benjamin H. Liles

          John penned the words in his gospel narrative, "But to all who did receive Him, to those who believed in His name, He gave the right to become children of God" (1:12). I wonder, though, do we as followers of Christ show this in our daily walks? Are we going out of our way, putting to death the things of the flesh to ensure Christ is seen within us, working Himself outward to a lost and dying world? In all honesty, I have to say I feel I fall short of the standard Jesus gave to "love others."

Living Life in Jesus


By Benjamin H. Liles

          I know I have probably said this before, but it bears repeating again: Jesus Christ went to the cross to redeem His people from a life of sin and death. To return to living that way after Jesus says, "Go and sin no more" (John 5:14, John 8:11) is like a dog returning to its own vomit (see Proverbs 26:11). John, the disciple Jesus Christ loved, wrote, "Do not love the world or anything in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world—the desires of the flesh, the desires of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not from the Father but from the world. The world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God remains forever" (1 John 2:15-17, Berean Study).

All Manner of Things (Book Reviews)


By Benjamin H. Liles

           Susie Finkbeiner's book All Manner of Things has been a highly anticipated book of 2019. Before I jump into the review of this book I want to mention how dedicated of an author she is. Susie is the bestselling author of A Cup of Dust, A Trail of Crumbs, and A Song of Home. She volunteers her time at Ada Bible Church in Grand Rapids, Michigan, and she speaks at retreats and women's conferences throughout Michigan.

Soul Sins (A Soundbite)


By Benjamin H. Liles

          A lot of people believe that when they die they aren't going to Heaven or Hell, kind of a holding place somewhere between. God says otherwise. "The soul who sins is the one who will die. A son will not bear the iniquity of the father, and a father will not bear the iniquity of the son. The righteousness of the righteous man will fall upon him, and the wickedness of the wicked man will fall upon him" (Ezekiel 18:20, Berean Study)

Living Lies (Book Reviews)


By Benjamin H. Liles

          When I say that I truly loved a book it has to do with the way an author writes, the phrasing of what is said, the characters given and portrayed. I can say the same for Natalie Walters latest Living Lies, it is really a good read. The book is set against the southern town of Walton, Georgia where Lane Kent has a restaurant. It seems from the outside of the book she's seeking to move on after her husband's death. We see a woman, a bit of how she is--being depressed, and at the same time who ends up seeing a dead body.

Traits of Righteous


By Benjamin H. Liles

          When I think of all the things God has done on my behalf and throughout my life I can't help but lift my lips in praise and thankfulness to Him. Even on those days it seems hard to do the same I still look at Him as my source and my comfort. It is with this reason I'm going over a psalm I believe to be important. It's not just important to me, but to every one who reads it.

Less is More (Book Review)


By, Benjamin H. Liles

          While I mainly and always write what I know would please Jesus Christ, my Lord and Savior, I have to be truly objective when I talk about Chris Nye's book, Less is More. When I say what I do it's about our popular culture, such as Britney Spears, Pope Francis -- also known by the name Jorge Mario Bergoglio, before being crowned "Pope," and admittedly things pertaining to what all Americans desire after: prosperity. I applaud none of that, save Christ alone.

What Self-Sacrifice Means


By Benjamin H. Liles

           To start this off, I want to apologize for the almost three week break I took without notice. I was feeling led one way until tonight when I remembered what Paul wrote to the Church at Ephesus, "Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger; instead, bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord" (Ephesians 6:4, Berean Study). I would love to explain why this verse jumped out at me, but at the same time I would rather honor God by being honorable to my parents. To really get a good look, Paul uses a phrase here before he says anything about training a child, as well as instructing them: "Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger."

Do You Consider Yourself A Christian?


By Benjamin H. Liles

           When we're told in scripture, "Perfect love casts out fear," I think of what firemen, even what law enforcement officers do on a daily basis. Firemen don't simply put out fires, they rescue people from burning homes. They help others, while putting themselves at risk. Same with LEO's. So many people see cops as if they are the enemy, but really, they are like every single one of us. They eat, the sleep, have families, and even go out of their way to make sure of this one thing that they put their lives on the line for: "Am I making sure others are safe, while I'm working?"

The Next Right Thing (Book Reviews)


By Benjamin H. Liles

          While I want to praise Emily Freeman's book, The Next Right Thing, as well as her ability to write well, I also find it hard to give this book all the merit it's due. One thing I do like is the tag line for this book: A simple, soulful practice for making life decisions. I see that tag and I have this glimpse of Jesus Christ walking up a mountain to take time to settle down and spend time with God, the Father. While He sits there to quiet Himself, and to spend prayer time with the One who called Him to give His life a ransom for many, He sees His disciples out on the Sea of Galilee getting tossed and driven by waves and wind.

You Could Be Drinking "Living Water"


By Benjamin H. Liles

          Yet, what exactly is this living water that Jesus spoke of in John 4? At first glance it's an encounter Jesus has with a Samaritan woman at the village of Sychar. At some point during this narrative, Jesus tells her, "If you knew the gift of God and who it is that asks you for a drink, you would have asked him and he would have given you living water" (John 4:10). Here's the thing of it, however; Jesus already knew of her many husbands and the fact she was with a man she wasn't even married to!

Believe Better



          I know, the quality isn't the best, but I've always heard, "That to get better, you have to start somewhere." What I plan on doing through my youtube channel to help fellow believes in Jesus Christ to feel more encouraged, and to feel heard.

Heart of a King (Book Cover)


By Benjamin H. Liles

          This is a completely amazing book by Jill Eileen Smith about King Solomon. While there are certain names we know of for sure from scripture, namely Abishag and Naamah, I find that Smith's storytelling around King Solomon and at least four of his wives is very well written. Smith has done a great deal of research for the book, and it truly shows. I would say I recommend it if you're a fan of historical, Biblical, and romance, too. As I said it is an amazing read.

Faith is for Weak People (Book Review)


By Benjamin H. Liles

          This latest book by Ray Comfort, Faith is for Weak People, has a great deal of good information for fellow believers in Jesus Christ. Rather than focus on logical arguments to prove God is real, rather, Ray uses the Bible to show that God "[chose] the foolish things of the world that He might shame the wise" (1 Corinthians 1:27). Although it seems the book title is out to hurt those of us who choose to follow Christ Jesus, it is one of the objections others who do not understand God or His word use in excusing themselves.

What Christian Conversion Means


By Benjamin H. Liles

          I honestly believe a truly authentic and changed person is one who believes Jesus Christ is "The way, the truth and the life" (John 14:6). What it means is that to this man or woman Jesus has called them to a relationship and the result is they are completely changed. Take this into fact there are those who simply think giving Jesus Christ special adoration means He's a religion don't have the full facts.

Real and Honest Faith


By Benjamin H. Liles

          Tonight, I was trying to sleep and the same thing happens tonight as it has in recent nights: for some reason I just can't sleep. Maybe tonight's reason is different from the past few nights, I don't know for sure. Then I consider the fact I actually want to write about God's Holy Spirit. I'm starting to think maybe this life I've lived for so long before Jesus Christ is kind of like yesterday's news: old, hashed and re-hashed.

Why is it Called "Good Friday?"


By Benjamin H. Liles

          For the follower of Christ Jesus we know what it means to celebrate Good Friday. But even if we didn't know or understand the reason we can rest assured on two things: Jesus died an hour and nine minutes ago, as it is in the States here, on April 3, 33 A.D. It means that almost two thousand years ago, at around 3 or 3:30 pm in Jerusalem, Israel Jesus paid the sacrifice for you and I. Why is that a "good" thing?

Confronting Old Testament Controversies (Book Review)


By Benjamin H. Liles

          I have never, in all my time reviewing books, found as good a book on this level of subject matter as well written, if not simply put together well. When I say that, I mean it in the sense of Tremper Longman III’s book Confronting Old Testament Controversies. Within these two hundred ninety-four pages he covers four special topics that the Old Testament encompasses: Creation and Evolution, History, Violence and Sexuality. To that end I say this: Longman does a wonderful job covering all four subjects as best as possible.

Loving My Actual Neighbor (Book Review)


By Benjamin H. Liles


            I often think of ways of how I can show God’s loving care, compassion and mercy towards others. With Alexandra Kuykendall’s Loving My Actual Neighbor, she puts forth seven things she considers worth looking at in dealing with our neighbors. Those things she looks at within the pages of this book are holding a posture of humility, asking questions to learn, being quiet to listen, standing in those times of awkwardness, accepting what is, lightening up, and giving freely.

The Artful Match (Book Review)


By Benjamin H. Liles

           Ever since Jennifer Delamere's series London Beginnings caught my eye, I have truly enjoyed reading and reviewing her books. Hopefully, even after this latest review I give her book there are a great many more to be held. That being said, all three of these books, which started with Rosalyn's story, swept through Julia's story and now is on Cara's story one can only hope to be amazed and even more so, captivated, by Delamere's wonderful storytelling as well as her prose.

Evidence of the Holy Spirit


By Benjamin H. Liles

          I've been wanting to get back into talking about the Holy Spirit and how it can be evidenced. Tonight I was listening to Todd Wagner from Watermark Community Church on Real Truth. Real Quick..

Joyful Surrender (Book Review)


By Benjamin H. Liles

          Considering the fact I had reviewed one other Elisabeth Elliot book some time back I find it an honor to review this one -- Joyful Surrender. I always find it interesting how missionaries do their charitable Christian work and admire them that are able to do so. Through it all Elliot is one of those few who showcase a genuine zeal for not simply loving others but loving God as well. How I do desire to be such in my own walk with Christ as well.

Facing Adversity


By Benjamin H. Liles

          I know I tend to focus on certain subjects in a biblical way: whether on the Holy Spirit, the book of Ezekiel, Christ, God, and so forth. Adversity and bipolar disorder have marked a greater part of my life. I've made my mind up as of today to do as God commanded Cain, "If you do what is right, won’t you be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at the door. Its desire is for you, but you must rule over it" (Genesis 4:7, Holman Christian Standard).

None Greater (Book Review)


By Benjamin H. Liles

          In perhaps one of the best known Christian songs says it the same way as Matthew Barrett does for this book. Chris Tomlins wrote for the pre-Chorus for the song God of This City, "There is no one like our God." So, what does this have to do with Barrett's book None Greater? Everything. God is unlike any other who pretends to be Him: There is no one like our God. I've had the greatest time reading this book and it has gotten me to see the God of this world, of this universe, is more powerful than a raging flood.

Breaking the Power of Negative Words (Book Review)


By, Benjamin H. Liles

          No matter how we all cut it our words have impact on others ad their lives. Some words wound. Other words heal. Some words give life, while other words bring nothing but death. Mary C. Busha, author of Breaking the Power of Negative Words puts it best in this phrase (although I'm rephrasing it): People who are hurt themselves more than likely will hurt other people with their words. Do they mean to do it? Maybe and maybe not. It's not up to us to offer our own justice, however.

The Holy Spirit: Streams of Living Water


By Benjamin H. Liles

          Most of us know the value of hard work on a daily basis. Is it any wonder why the laborer chooses to drink water? Ninety percent of our bodies contains water, and therefore water is vital to helping us maintain a good life when we drink water. But let's face it, when it comes to God the attitude is this: "Eh, who needs Him?" or even "What God? Not for me!" To this I say He knows us so well He can speak an invaluable truth to us and then invite us in a little bit deeper. Take the woman of Samaria who comes to the well while Jesus is sitting there.

When God Moves


By Benjamin H. Liles

          I have heard for some time now that there are certain leaders and pastors within the Christian community that, and I quote, "God's Spirit doesn't move any longer" or even "The Holy Spirit is irrelevant in this day and age." Wow! To that I have to ask this, then, how does anyone become a Christian if there's no Spirit of God or even that He's still at work? That doesn't equate well in my mind's eye.

When Life Doesn't Match Your Dreams (Book Review)


By Benjamin H. Liles

          If I could have titled this book it would be more along the lines of Hope for the 21st Century. Why do I say that? Since most of us live in this time and place to make the biggest and best impact in these early years of the twenty-first century, we can and should show our faith and hope in the person of Jesus Christ. I don't say that to minimize the work of Jill Eileen Smith at all. I just want to show how good of a job she does in writing this book.

A Tender Hope (Book Review)


By Benjamin H. Liles

          Amanda Cabot's latest book, A Tender Hope, is filled with page after page of faith, hope and love; which according to Paul, "the greatest of these is love." How well we all would be if that was always the case. One of the things I love about this book is how well rounded her characters are. The reason I love this book so much is because of the complexity of the storyline as well as how well the individual stories of certain characters weave into the larger picture of Thea Michener's story.

Treasures in Clay Pots


By Benjamin H. Liles

          But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, so that the surpassing greatness of the power will be of God and not from ourselves; we are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not despairing; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; always carrying about in the body the dying of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body. ~ 2 Corinthians 4:7-10, New American Standard

Christ, the Hope of Glory


By Benjamin H. Liles

          To them God willed to make known what are the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles: which is Christ in you, the hope of glory. Him we preach, warning every man and teaching every man in all wisdom, that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus. ~ Colossians 1:27-28, NKJV

Gospel of Jesus Christ Explained: Psalm 139


By Benjamin H. Liles

          Lord, you have searched me, and you know me. You know my sitting down and my rising up. You perceive my thoughts from afar. You search out my path and my lying down, and are acquainted with all my ways. How precious to me are your thoughts, God! How vast is their sum!

A Show of Compassion


By Benjamin H. Liles

          In my area where I live there is a program that is called the Hunger Alliance. It is an organization that seeks to help individuals and families get the food they desperately need where there is no adequate help for them. Food stamps are being cut on a large amount of our elderly and children who are low-income due to people not having jobs. There's actually a job shortage for a lot of people.