Whyte House Family Devotions #324 (04/10/18): “What Is Most Important?” by Billy Graham


My family and I have had morning devotions, or family altar as some people call it, every day ever since my wife, Meriqua, and I were married 30 years ago. We have prayed and read the Bible together as well as other devotional books as a family, and it is the only reason why this family has stayed together, and the only reason why God has blessed our family and used our family in ministry all of these years. We read Ephesians 5 and 6 every morning as it relates to the role of each member of the family and how that we need to put on the whole armor of God to fight against the devil who is seeking to destroy our family and all Christian families, churches, and Christians. So, now after 30 years of doing this in our home, we are opening this up to others who don’t have a family to pray with, who don’t have a spouse, or who are single by choice, and to encourage all families who are still intact to go back to the family altar and have devotions together every morning. In these devotions, you may hear me deal with a temptation I’m facing in my life, you may hear me rebuke my wife about not doing what she should be doing, or you may hear me get on one of my children’s cases about something they’re doing. Don’t be shocked; this is real life.

SING “DOXOLOGY”

Praise God from Whom all blessings flow
Praise Him, all creatures here below
Praise Him above, ye heavenly hosts
Praise Father, Son and Holy Ghost
Amen

Billy Graham said, “Becoming a Christian takes only a single step; being a Christian means walking with Christ the rest of your life.”

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PRAY “THE NEW COMMON PRAYER”

Almighty and most merciful Father; We have sinned, and strayed from Thy ways like lost sheep. We have followed too much the devices and desires of our own hearts. We have offended against Thy holy laws. We have left undone those things which we ought to have done; And we have done those things which we ought not to have done; And there is no peace and joy in us. But Thou, O Lord, have mercy upon us, miserable offenders. Spare Thou us, O God, who confess our sins, our faults, and our failures. Restore those of us who confess our sins and repent; According to Thy promises declared unto us in Christ Jesus our Lord. And grant, O most merciful Father, for His sake; That we may hereafter live a godly, righteous, and sober life. To the glory of Thy holy Name. In Jesus Christ’s Name, Amen.

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EPHESIANS 6:4

And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.

So far, we have discussed how fathers may provoke their children to anger by capriciousness, unreasonableness, favoritism, selfishness, criticism without praise, demanding perfection, extremes of over- and under- discipline, and insensitivity. Steven J. Cole writes in his commentary on this passage, “Fathers may provoke their children to anger by not being available. I recently read a heartbreaking letter to Dear Abby from an eleven-year-old girl whose dad spends all his spare time with his friends, but won’t do things with her. Children interpret an absent or unavailable father as rejecting them or not loving them. There is no such thing as quality time with your children, apart from quantity time! And when you spend time with your children, they know whether you’re doing it because it’s your duty, or whether you enjoy spending time with them because you love them. You only have a short window of time when your kids want to spend time with you. A wise father will capitalize on it by spending a lot of time with his children. By the way, if you’re too busy for your kids because you’re ‘serving the Lord’ at church, your kids will not grow up to love the church. You can involve them with you as you serve the Lord, but don’t neglect them in order to serve the Lord.”

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PRAYER

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DEVOTIONAL PASSAGE: Psalm 124:6-8

6 Blessed be the Lord, who hath not given us as a prey to their teeth.

7 Our soul is escaped as a bird out of the snare of the fowlers: the snare is broken, and we are escaped.

8 Our help is in the name of the Lord, who made heaven and earth.

Regarding this passage, Matthew Henry writes: “God is the Author of all our deliverances, and he must have the glory. The enemies lay snares for God’s people, to bring them into sin and trouble, and to hold them there. Sometimes they seem to prevail; but in the Lord let us put our trust, and we shall not be put to confusion. The believer will ascribe all the honour of his salvation, to the power, mercy, and truth of God, and look back with wonder and thanksgiving on the way in which the Lord has led him. Let us rejoice that our help for the time to come is in him who made heaven and earth.”

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PRAYER FOR THE ESTATES
1. Clergy (church)
2. Government
3. People (citizens)
4. The press (media)
5. New media/Online journalists

PRAYER FOR CHURCH LEADERSHIP
– For all pastors, church leaders, denominational leaders, Bible teachers, missionaries, and ministry workers.

GOVERNMENT LEADERS

1 Timothy 2:1-2 says, “I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men; For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty.”

President Donald Trump and his administration
Vice President Mike Pence
First Lady Melania Trump
Second Lady Karen Pence
All White House staff including: Director of the Office of Administration Marcia Lee Kelly
All leaders of federal agencies including: Small Business Administration Linda McMahon
All state governors including: New Mexico Governor Susana Martinez
All city mayors including: Belleview, FL, Mayor Christine Dobkowski
All members of Congress including: Florida Representative Debbie Wasserman Schultz
All law enforcement officials including: Belleview, FL, Police Chief Terry Holland
All military leaders including: Defense Secretary James Mattis / General Raymond A. Thomas, Commander of U.S. Special Operations Command
Leaders of nations around the world including: Mali’s President Ibrahim Keïta and Prime Minister Boubèye Maïga
For the peace of Jerusalem

PRAYER FOR THE PEOPLE / CITIZENS

PRAYER FOR THE MEDIA

PRAYER FOR CURRENT EVENTS AROUND THE WORLD

– For the comfort of the families of 27 children who were killed when their school bus plunged into a gorge in India
– For the comfort of the families of 110 people killed in fighting in Syria over the past few days, and we pray for thee ultimate resolution of the conflict.
– For the comfort of the families and community who are grieving over the deaths of 15 Canadian hockey players who were killed in a bus crash as they were traveling to a game.

PRAYER REQUESTS

Christopher
please bless and provide for him, the orphans, his family, and church members; turn all the people in India from idol worship toward You; have millions to be saved through their seminars, crusades and conventions; help them to spread the Gospel effectively

Rose
please heal her pastor; please heal her of panic attacks and fear; give her peace of mind

Justice
please provide money for the artificial leg that he needs

THOSE WHO HAVE ACCEPTED CHRIST AS SAVIOR

Kerry
Caro
Japhet

THOSE WHO HAVE RECOMMITTED THEIR LIVES TO CHRIST

Stephen
Makaela
Wayne

DEVOTIONAL READING: “What Is Most Important?,” by Billy Graham

1 Corinthians 15:13,14,20 says, “For if there is no resurrection of the dead, then Christ must still be dead. And if he is still dead, then all our preaching is useless and your trust in God is empty, worthless, hopeless… The fact is that Christ did actually rise from the dead…”

I was invited to have coffee one morning with Konrad Adenauer before he retired as the Chancellor of Germany. When I walked in, I expected to meet a tall, stiff, formal man who might even be embarrassed if I brought up the subject of religion. After the greeting, the Chancellor suddenly turned to me and said, “Mr. Graham, what is the most important thing in the world?” Before I could answer, he had answered his own question. He said, “The resurrection of Jesus Christ. If Jesus Christ is alive, then there is hope for the world. If Jesus Christ is in the grave, then I don’t see the slightest glimmer of hope on the horizon.” Then he amazed me by saying that he believed that the resurrection of Christ was one of the best-attested facts of history. He said, “When I leave office, I intend to spend the rest of my life gathering scientific proof of the resurrection of Jesus Christ.” It was the fact of the resurrection of Christ that called the disciples to go out as burning young revolutionaries to change the world of their day. They preached that Christ is alive. This should be our message every day of the year.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

Now, if you do not know Jesus Christ as your Savior, allow me to show you how you can place your faith and trust in Him for Salvation from sin and Hell.

First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”

Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”

Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.”

Now that is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.

Romans 10:9 & 13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved… For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the Cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your Salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. I am sorry for my sins, and today I choose to turn from my sins. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. I trust Jesus Christ as my Savior and I choose to follow Him as Lord from this day forward. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.

If you just trusted Jesus Christ as your Saviour, and you prayed that prayer and meant it from your heart, I declare to you that based upon the Word of God, you are now saved from Hell and you are on your way to Heaven. Welcome to the family of God! I want to congratulate you on doing the most important thing in life and that is receiving Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour. For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”

Until next time, May the Lord Bless You!

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