Friday, October 26, 2007

Faith-Lift Friday(Trick or Treat)

Encourage others and yourself! Share a scripture, quote, devotional, lyrics, or anything that has blessed you and strengthened you in your faith.Don't forget to grab the button and to link back to Sheryl's post

Today I thought I would share with you all the story I'm sharing with the kids in Jr church on Sunday. It is a lesson my grandma use to teach us when we were little.
It is called Tricks or Treats by Kate Oliver. The bottom of the page says September 1962.. So I guess Grandma could have read this to my dad and my uncle also. Grandma has been teaching Sunday school and Jr Church for some time now :) It is a Flash Card lesson but you all will be getting the lesson in the form of pictures of the flash cards. The 1st picture you see here is just something I thought I would toss in there not part of the flash cards. So sit back and enjoy the story

(I'm skipping the part that tells how Halloween came to be because it is too much typing and this will be long enough...)
In the United States of America, Halloween is a fun-night. The boys and girls dress up in costumes and go around to their neighbors' homes and try to fool them. They ring the doorbell, and when a neighbor comes to the door they shout "trick or treat!" The neighbor is all prepared for the game. He gives the boys and girls some candy, fruit or some other little treat, which they put in there "trick or treat bag," Then the children promise not to play tricks on the neighbor. It is all in fun, and the grownups usually enjoy it as much as the children.

Today I want to tell you about some tricks and treats we can learn about from the Bible. The Bible doesn't call them tricks and treats, but lets see if that isn't what they are.
On Halloween night the boys and girls wear masks and costumes, trying to fool people so they will not know who they are. This is all done in Fun.
But Satan really tricks people. And he also wants to disguise himself so you will not know who he is. That's one of his worst tricks, for then he can fool you. The Bible says he transforms, or changes himself into an angel of light(II Corinthians 11:14 And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.)
We don't know what Satan looks like, so we'll use this ugly old face because the things he does are so ugly and mean. But if Satan tempted us with mean things all the time, we'd be wise to him. So he makes himself seems like an angel of light and tries to make us think his ways are so good. The Bible also says Satan sends his prophets as wolves in sheep's clothing (Matthew 7:15 Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.) These both mean he disguises himself.
He doesn't wear a mask but he sends people to tell us other ways are as good as God's or tell us God doesn't mean everything He says in the Bible. Or maybe he'll tell us there's no harm in doing certain things God doesn't want us to do because He knows they aren't good for us. Now such people may seem like pretty good folk, but they just don't know God and His ways so they think they know best.
Satan is always looking for some man or women, boy or girl he can fool and maybe keep from coming to the Lord Jesus to be saved, or get Christians to forget about God's Word and serving Him(I Peter 5:8 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour) But God does not want us to be ignorant of Satan's tricks (II Corinthians 2:11 Lest Satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices.) nor to run from Satan, also called the devil (Ephesians 4:27 Neither give place to the devil.) So He tells us to put on, not a mask, but the whole armour of God that we may be able to stand Against Satan(Ephesians 6:13-17 Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God) God offers this armour to all. We put it on by faith. First, we must take the helmet of salvation, the Lord Jesus Himself (Romans 13:14 But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof.) In Him the whole armour is provided. When our hearts are cleansed by His blood, our minds are protected from the enemy.
We have the breastplate of righteousness. Righteousness is rightness doing and being right according to what God says is right. The Lord Jesus keeps our hearts from all unrighteousness (I John 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness)
We have our loins girt about with truth. Our loins are the part of the body just above the hips. To gird means to put on a strong belt. This gave the warrior more strenght to stand in battle. The Lord Jesus is Truth (John 14:6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.)
Our feet have on the Gospel of peace that we may run quickly to others and tell them of the Lord Jesus that they may have peace (Romans 5:1 Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ)
The shield of faith is believing in, trusting the Lord Jesus who alone can stop the fiery darts of Satan.
Then we take the Spirit's sword, which is the Word of God, and we are ready for battle. This always works. Satan will run every time we use the sword of the Spirit, God's Word, on him (Ephesians 6:17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God: Hebrews 4:12 For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.)
When we receive the Lord Jesus Himself, we have the whole armour of God. The Lord Jesus is our salvation. He is truth. The Gospel of peace is the good news that He died on the cross for our sins, was buried and rose again the third day. It cost Him His life. He Gives it to you. When you receive Him by faith, then you may wear His armour.
If we have received the Lord Jesus as Saviour, we must use this whole armour, for even then Satan will try to trick us.
We have seen Satan's tricks, and now let us see the Lord Jesus Christ's Treats. For we must choose tricks or treats.
The Lord Jesus does not have to hide behind a mask. He does not want to fool us, because He has no tricks, only treats. He shows Himself plainly all though the Bible that He is God, God the Son.
The first treat He offers us is life, heavenly and eternal life (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. John 10:28-29 And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand. My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father's hand. I John 5:12 He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life. )
It is a life to share with Him now and forever. We must receive this treat before we can have any other. This life is also our helmet of salvation, for we are saved from sin to eternal life.
Sometimes people give you treats that are not wrapped- Candy or cookies. You take these but you do not eat them when you get home because you do not trust them. But this treat, eternal life is wrapped up in the Lord Jesus, Himself. Except you receive Him into your heart (John 1:12 But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name) you cannot have any treats at all.
When you receive Him, He cleanses you from all sin and you receive eternal life (Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. Ephesians 1:7 in whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace)
Then He wants to give you a treat that you can enjoy every day. It is power over sin.
What does this mean? It means you don't have to be naughty. It means that sin needs not rule your life every day. The Lord Himself wants to rule it. He does it though His Word and by His Holy Spirit.
God's Holy Spirit is a very special treat, for when you receive the Lord Jesus as Saviour His Holy Spirit comes to live in your heart to help you and guide you. As you read your Bible and pray each day, asking Him to lead you you will find other treats in your life, and these are treats you can pass on to others too.
The first is love. If you let Gods love work in your heart, you will love people(John 15:12 This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you.) You won't hate even those who might be unkind to you.
For the next treat, which love will help you have is Forgiveness. Even as God forgave you , you will be able to forgive those who wrong you.
Then you can use another treat the Lord gives you. It's kindness. God is kind to us, and He helps us be kind to others(Ephesians 4:32 And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you.) not cross and grouchy. You will want to put others first instead of yourself. You will follow the rule the Lord Jesus gave His disciples- do unto others as you would have them do unto you(Luke 6:31 And as ye would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise.)
This brings us to another treat Obedience. You will want to obey your parents and those who have authority over you, even if they not watching(Ephesians 6:1 Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right.)
Also as you are honest and not deceitful, you will find life a real treat each day. People will trust you. It will be a life that will not only give you pleasure but you can bring pleasure to all those whom you meet each day. Most important of all, your life will bring glory and honor to the Lord Jesus.

Now you must choose. Do you want tricks or treats?

You cannot put on a mask and fool the Lord Jesus. He looks into your heart and sees every sin( Romans 5:12 Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned Romans 3:23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God)
Satan wants to trick you into thinking you can keep your sin and go to heaven, too but you cannot. Jesus said "if you die in your sins, where I am ye cannot come"(John 8:23 And he said unto them, Ye are from beneath; I am from above: ye are of this world; I am not of this world.)
But Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; God says this is a true saying, and you should believe it (I Timothy 1:15 This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief.)

This is where I would give an Invitation.. So I will offer this invitation to my readers also. If you have never received the Lord Jesus as Saviour and would like to or have any questions please feel free to email me.

Happy Friday Everyone.

1 comment:

Sheryl said...

What a great object lesson for the kids (and adults!) for this time of year! Your grandmother must be a precious lady.
I still remember the "whosoever" flannel story my Sunday School teacher would present every now and really made a deep impression on me. I'm guessing your grandmother's lesson has probably done the same for many kids!