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Old 03-15-2010, 06:58 AM   #16
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"Dominoes"

March 15, 2010



. . . evil people and impostors will go on from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived. But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it. 2 Timothy 3:13-14



There was a time when people used to write letters; that doesn't happen much anymore.

There used to be a time when Walter A. Maier, the first Speaker on The Lutheran Hour, got 50,000 letters a month. For many reasons, that doesn't happen anymore either.

Because people don't write, and because it's far faster and cheaper to e-mail someone, it's understandable why the U.S. Post Office is losing money. It's also right that Postmaster General John Potter would do his best to try and balance that budget.

To balance the budget is why he is proposing no Saturday mail delivery. If Congress blesses such an action, it could save the country $3.5 billion. Right now, it appears Congress is not prepared to give that go-ahead.

Did I hear you ask, "Why?"

Here's part of the answer: Congress thinks if the government doesn't deliver mail on Saturday, more people will go elsewhere to send their letters and packages. If that were to happen, we would have another big deficit and have to cancel another day's delivery.

Congress is afraid we will finally balance the Post Office budget when we get to the point where we aren't delivering mail on any days of the week.

You know Scripture is full of stories about people who have had a bad idea and, through a series of wrong choices, made the bad idea worse.

Adam and Eve's jealousy of God's wisdom led them to listen to Satan, which soon had them eating the forbidden fruit, which eventually had them hiding from their Creator The Children of Israel's dissatisfaction with Moses' leadership had them murmuring. Their complaining led to rebellion, which led to idolatry. David's lust led to adultery, and that adultery ended up with him becoming a murderer.

As Paul said to Timothy, evil people go from bad to worse.

We Christians ought to be different. We who have been washed in the Savior's blood should realize the best way to stop sin from escalating is not to commit that sin in the first place. After all, Satan can't take over if we never give him a foothold in our lives.

THE PRAYER: Dear Lord Jesus, You never fell victim to the devil's lies and the world's temptations. Because of Your perfect life, complete sacrifice, and glorious resurrection we are saved. Now, we ask that You will empower us so we might also flee sin and Satan. In Your Name Amen.

In Christ I remain His servant and yours,



Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker of The Lutheran HourŪ
Lutheran Hour Ministries
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Old 03-16-2010, 07:04 AM   #17
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"You Can't Say That"

March 16, 2010



Then the high priest tore his clothes and said, "He has spoken blasphemy! Why do we need any more witnesses? Look, now you have heard the blasphemy. What do you think?" "He is worthy of death," they answered. Matthew 26:65-66



PARENTAL ALERT - THIS DEVOTION MAY BE TOO INTENSE FOR THE YOUNG.

This is a devotion in which I implore you not to shoot the messenger. That's what I am here: a messenger.

At the age of 77, Italy's Beppe Bigazzi had made a name for himself in the world of that country's cuisine. His opinion was respected; his advice was sought after, and his televised cooking show was quite popular.

All this ended a few weeks ago.

It ended when Bigazzi said he had eaten "cat stew" many times. It ended when he gave his listening audience the recipe on how to prepare the "delicacy."

And the reaction? His female co-host hid herself; the country's Health Ministry said, "Cats are protected by law from cruelty, maltreatment, and abandonment." The TV channel's director had him suspended, a decision which was "painful but inevitable."

It goes to prove there are some things a person just can't say with impunity or without punishment. Saying that you enjoy eating cat stew is too politically incorrect.

Jesus would have understood. When He laid claim to being the Son of God, the reaction by the priests was pretty violent. The high priest tore his robes to show he was upset, and the rest of the high court agreed Jesus was worthy of death.

It was a fair verdict. Well, it would have been a fair verdict, except for one small thing. What Jesus said was the truth. If you or I laid claim to being God's only Son, it would be a first-class falsehood. But when those words are uttered by Jesus, they are the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.

How do I know?

I know because Jesus rose from the dead on the third day just as He said He would. Jesus' resurrection offers proof that everything He has ever said or promised is real, reliable, and true.

And because it's true, we have eternal life.

THE PRAYER: Dear Lord Jesus, for Your sacrifice and the salvation that comes through Your resurrection victory, we offer our thanks and praise. Now, although some may consider it politically incorrect, may we tell the world, "There is salvation in no one else other than Jesus Christ." In Your Name we pray it. Amen.



In Christ I remain His servant and yours,



Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker of The Lutheran HourŪ
Lutheran Hour Ministries
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Old 03-17-2010, 07:00 AM   #18
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"Lost"

March 17, 2010



(Jesus said) "For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost." Luke 19:10



I get lost.

There, I've made the confession. I get lost.

Not just regular lost. I get lost coming out of a hospital room, when I look for my car at the airport, when I'm traveling to see someone, when I leave the movie theater.

I get lost.

I used to think I got lost because I didn't pay attention, or I hadn't made any mental notes as to which way I should go, or maybe I was born without the direction-finding gene.

Direction-finding gene?

Believe it or not, there may be such a gene. Scientists from Montclair State University, Johns Hopkins University, and the University of Chicago have found there are people who have "Williams Syndrome."

They concluded that folks who have Williams Syndrome may indeed have some sort of genetic disorder that doesn't allow them to find themselves out of a paper bag. (Actually, the researchers never really said that bit about a paper bag. That was mine.)

Even so, there are some folks who have a tough time getting around, and I don't have to tell you who you are. You already know.

In contrast to the select group that has Williams Syndrome, all of us start out spiritually lost. Try as we might, it's impossible for any of us to figure a way out of our sin and find the path that would take us back to God.

This is why we who were lost, needed someone to show us the way. Actually, we needed someone to be the way.

That person, of course, is Jesus. Jesus spent His entire life, blazing the path, showing the way, building the bridge, being the individual who would pay the price that would reconcile sinful humankind with our perfect God.

His third-day resurrection from the dead is the final proof we need that the work is done and that Jesus is the Way . . . to forgiveness . . . to peace . . . to heaven.

THE PRAYER: Dear Lord Jesus, for the fact Your feet never left the path which would lead to my salvation, I offer my thanks. Now may I gladly follow You every day of my life and especially this day. In Your Name I ask it. Amen.



In Christ I remain His servant and yours,



Pastor Ken Klaus
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Old 03-18-2010, 07:00 AM   #19
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"Goose And Gander"

March 18, 2010



Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it. Proverbs 22:6



Dale Halferty teaches industrial arts at Guthrie Center High School in Iowa. Recently, Halferty was given a five-day unpaid suspension for insubordination.

The suspension came because Halferty refused to allow a student to build a Wiccan altar in shop class. (For those who don't know the word, "Wiccan," it means the student is a practicing witch.)

The student's project was designed to help him worship his goddess.

Now the school's officials believe the boy has the right to express his religious beliefs in school assignments. Halferty believes there should be a separation between Church and State.

He also believes he is obligated to take a Christian stand for what he believes is right or wrong. Halferty doesn't believe worshipping rocks and trees is right. In this he is joined by almost 70 of the school's students who also don't wish to have witchcraft practiced at school.

Having said all this, Halferty did tell the boy he could build his project, but he had to leave his religious materials at home. When the student kept coming back to class with a book on witchcraft, Halferty asked the student to stop working on the project. To be fair, Halferty had done the same sort of thing when a student started to build a cross in class.

Now, this devotion isn't really about Halferty, and it isn't about shop class, and it isn't about freedom of speech, or even the community's principal, or its superintendent.

It is about training up a child in the way he should go.

I get worried when I hear of a student whose parents allow him to be a Wiccan. I am concerned when the student doesn't follow a reasonable request made by a teacher. I get disturbed when I see such a lack of respect for authority.

Applying the Proverbs passage to the story of this unnamed young man causes me to wonder. I wonder if he feels it is his duty to confront a teacher, to challenge authority, or to push his theology in the public school setting. What will he do and what will he be like when he is an adult.

This is why our prayers today are for such people.

THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, Proverbs tells us that adults will remain loyal to what they have been taught. Today we pray for all the young people who are being taught wrong things, foolish things, next to nothing. Send Your Holy Spirit upon family and friends that they may motivate young people to goodness, godliness, and Jesus. If possible, grant a direction to a shop teacher who is trying to make a stand for his faith and the Savior in whom he believes. This I ask in Jesus' Name. Amen.



In Christ I remain His servant and yours,



Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker of The Lutheran HourŪ
Lutheran Hour Ministries
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Old 03-19-2010, 07:03 AM   #20
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"Our Fragile Existence"

March 19, 2010



(Jesus said) "And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age." Matthew 28:20b



Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ:

The salvation story of Jesus Christ reaches around the world. So that the readers of our Daily Devotion may see the power of the Savior on a global scale, we have asked the volunteers of our International Ministry Centers to write our Friday devotions. We pray that the Spirit may touch your day through their words.

In Christ, I remain, His servant and yours,
Kenneth R. Klaus
Speaker of The Lutheran Hour



Whether it's Panama or Paris, people get depressed. Sometimes that depression causes them to do things they never would have considered in their right minds -- things like suicide.

While it's typical for people to have moments of crisis and, at times, even profound anxiety, it's not normal for these mood states to drive people to suicide. Those who contemplate such dire measures unfortunately live in a world of shifting sand. In weighty moments of loneliness, when friends or family are unavailable -- or unwilling -- to help, the results can be catastrophic.

How many people suffer a similar anguish throughout the world? Are you one of them? If so, how can you survive in this confusing world? Do you have a spiritual foundation based in God, your Creator? Or do you search without finding and live without purpose?

Jesus Christ says, "Come, follow Me" (Luke 18:22b) to us today, even as He did to the ruler who inquired about inheriting eternal life centuries ago. Jesus alone is the true Way, the best guide, the supreme purpose, and the only source of life - both temporal and eternal.

If you are looking for the meaning of life and if you want to find true love and peace with God and within you, then grasp the nail-scarred hand of Jesus Christ, who offers His grace and forgiveness to any who seek Him.

THE PRAYER: Lord, though the future is unknown to us, Your love is dependable and without end. As a result, I know I can count on You. How good it is to know the things I can't control, You can, because You love us! Amen.

Biography of Author: This devotion was based on a text submitted by Marcos Kempff, a volunteer with Lutheran Hour Ministries in Panama. In that country of more than three million people, LHM operates as Cristo Para Todas Las Naciones (CPTLN) -- "Christ for all Nations." Using Equipping the Saints (ETS) training, Bible Correspondence Courses (BCC), and Project JOEL, the LHM-Panama staff shares the Gospel with individuals throughout this Central American country.


To learn more about our International Ministries, click here or visit www.lhmint.org.







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Old 03-20-2010, 08:23 AM   #21
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March 20, 2010



(The LORD said) "Because you are precious in My eyes, and honored, and I love you . . ." Isaiah 43:4a



One of my senior citizen friends came in the other day and shared a story with me that I would now like to give to you.

Understand, I can't verify the truth of the story because my friend is quite a story-teller herself. Even so, this is what she, with a twinkle in her eye, said to me: "It was about two weeks ago, my five-year-old granddaughter climbed up on my lap and spent considerable time inspecting my white hair and wrinkles."

"After the examination was over, with great seriousness she asked, 'Grandma, did God make you?' I told her that He had."

"Knowing that when she starts asking questions, they can keep coming for a while, I wasn't surprised to find my granddaughter had another question for me. She asked, 'Did God make me, too?' I was relieved the query wasn't any harder. Yes, God made you, too. I told her."

"'Well,' said my dear five-year-old, 'Don't you think God is doing a better job nowadays than He used to?'"

With the emphasis the world puts on youth and the avoidance of aging, many people might agree with the granddaughter's conclusion.

That is hardly the case. God doesn't determine our worth on the basis of the candles on our birthday cake or the wrinkles on our forehead.

Indeed, one of the great joys of Christianity is the Savior loves young and old alike. Men and women are all in need of His care, and all believers constantly receive His grace, forgiveness, and redemption.

So to all of you who look in the mirror and see wrinkles that weren't there a few years ago, to all of you who find you can't keep up with the children the way you used to, I say, rejoice!

You have a Lord who loves you and a Savior who died so you might live forever.


From a devotion originally written for "By the Way"



THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, what a comfort to know I am precious in Your sight. No matter my age, my wrinkles, or the condition of my worn-out body, You love me. To You, my Creator, I give thanks. Amen.



In Christ I remain His servant and yours,



Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker of The Lutheran HourŪ
Lutheran Hour Ministries
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Old 03-21-2010, 08:45 AM   #22
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"Being Scared"

March 21, 2010



Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go. Joshua 1:9



When I was a little boy, my bedroom was paneled with knotty pine.

In the twilight, with the room lights out and the summer sun sliding under the horizon, those knots and stained shapes took on all kinds of strange monster faces.

At least in the mind's eye of a four-year-old boy.

In the winter, when the snow reflected the moon's light, those shadows came alive. Today, I'm an old man, but those memories are still very much with me.

Just as vivid is the time when my father came to my bedside and asked, "Son, you don't have to be afraid since you've said your prayers. You do say your prayers at night, don't you?"

I assured him I did.

His next question was, "And you do say your prayers in the morning, too? Right?"

I replied, "No, Dad, I don't have to. I'm not scared in the morning."

Now that I've grown up, I realize talking to God is not a once-a-day experience. The loving Lord most certainly wants to hear from me when I'm scared, but He also wants me to check in when things are going smoothly.

It's a sad thing, but many people still think of God as a refuge only when they're in trouble.

They only speak to Him when their lives are filled with monster faces, terrific terrors, and they are frightened beyond imagination.

If you're one of them, may I -- from experience -- remind you that God hears you at such moments? But He wants to hear from you at other times, too -- even in the morning, even when you're not scared any more. Today, can I encourage you to talk to the Savior who gave His life so you might live and so you might not be afraid.


From a devotion originally written for "By the Way"



THE PRAYER: Dear Precious Lord, thank You for being with me in times of joy as well as times of fear. Thank You that You care about my simplest needs and concerns. To know You are my Savior, my Friend, and always present reminds me I have nothing to fear. In Jesus' Name. Amen.







In Christ I remain His servant and yours,



Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker of The Lutheran HourŪ
Lutheran Hour Ministries
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Old 03-22-2010, 07:00 AM   #23
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"Practice Makes Perfect"

March 22, 2010



Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. Ephesians 6:1



The seven-year-old boy's name is Carlos.

At the press conference, the San Francisco Police Department didn't mention Carlos' entire name. Instead, they called him things like "brave," "courageous," and "cool under pressure."

And what had Carlos done to receive such praise?

His story began with Carlos' little sister leaving their home's front door unlocked. That was an invitation for three masked gunmen to break in and threaten Carlos' parents.

Carlos grabbed his sister, picked up a telephone, locked himself in the bathroom, and called the police. Pretty impressive, don't you think? I do, too. And if you're wondering how Carlos knew he was supposed to do those things, I can tell you.

Carlos was taught to do those things. Every day his mother made him rehearse what he was going to do in an emergency. That day when the bandits came, Carlos did just as he had been told. He called the police dispatcher and said, "Um, there's some, um, there's some guys that are going to kill my mom and my dad. Can you come, please?"

The police came. The thieves got away, but the parents were spared, and Carlos had become a hero.

I think Carlos' mom is a hero, a hero because of what she taught her son and daughter, a hero because she believes children ought to obey their parents.

I think there is a lesson here. We may not all live in a neighborhood as dangerous as that of Carlos and his sister. Even so, we parents need to teach our children how they can confront and escape evil when it comes calling -- and it will come calling. No neighborhood is completely safe all the time.

We need to teach our children to call 911 when they run up against armed robbers, and we need to teach them to call upon God when they are confronted by spiritual thieves and murderers.

THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, children need to obey their parents and parents need to teach children wisely and well. We give thanks that Carlos and his sister are safe. Now we pray the same might be said for all children. May we teach them to rely upon Jesus, their Savior, their Friend, their Protector and Salvation. This I ask in Jesus' Name. Amen.



In Christ I remain His servant and yours,



Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker of The Lutheran HourŪ
Lutheran Hour Ministries
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Old 03-23-2010, 07:04 AM   #24
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"The Thief Comes"

March 23, 2010



(Jesus said) "The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly." John 10:10



Yesterday, we talked about how a seven-year-old boy, following his mother's training, probably saved his family by making an emergency phone call to the police.

Sadly, not all stories turn out with such a happy ending.

Consider the tale of a convenience store owner in Montrose, Canada. Leroy Hiltz has operated his store for 22 years. During that time, his shop has been robbed nine different times.

In one of those robberies, his wife, Edna, was held at knifepoint. Two weeks ago Edna died. During the funeral, and the days of mourning that followed, the store was closed.

Knowing the family was in mourning -- make that because the family was in mourning -- thieves took advantage of the situation, kicked in the door of Hiltz's store and leisurely stole cases of cigarettes.

Realizing he was dealing with men who respected nothing, Hiltz said, "I'm going to go out of business against my will, but I can't take any more of it. It's bad enough having to grieve the loss of my wife, let alone having people in our community -- and these were people from our own community -- (breaking) into the store . . ." This was break-in number ten.

Even as I can understand why Hiltz is walking away, I am thankful the Lord doesn't do the same. He easily could. When the Lord looks at the world, He sees Satan continually breaking in and stealing individuals, communities, even nations.

As Jesus said, the devil is the thief who comes only to steal and kill and destroy.

We would be helpless if it weren't for the arrival of the Savior. It is He who takes Satan's abuse; it is He who suffers the indignity, the shame, the torment, the pain, the torture, and the death which have -- because of sin -- been directed against us.

Now, because of what Jesus has done, to those who are blessed with faith in the ever-living Lord, there is given life -- abundant life -- for this world and the next.
So, maybe this story turns out to have a happy ending after all.

THE PRAYER: Dear Lord Jesus, I give thanks for Your presence and all You have in Your great grace done for me. I rejoice that You have sent Satan packing and have forgiven me of my sins. Now may I make use of this abundant life that You have so freely bestowed. Let my abundant days be filled with abundant witness to Your love. In Your Name, Amen.



In Christ I remain His servant and yours,



Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker of The Lutheran HourŪ
Lutheran Hour Ministries
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Old 03-24-2010, 07:00 AM   #25
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"Not What They Appear To Be"

March 24, 2010



Likewise, husbands, live with your wives in an understanding way, showing honor to the woman as the weaker vessel, since they are heirs with you of the grace of life . . . 1 Peter 3:7a



Peter was married. We know that because Jesus cured the apostle's mother-in-law.

Having read the above text in 1 Peter, the line about women being "the weaker vessel," has often made me wonder if Peter ever really took a serious look at the woman he called, "his wife." I've seen my wife, Pam -- and a whole lot of other women -- put up with pain and carry problems, which would have broken the strongest of men. In this respect, women certainly don't appear to be the weaker vessel.

Things aren't always what they appear to be.

Consider the story of Johana Ortiz. Ortiz became pregnant and then her husband, Melvin, was sent overseas to Iraq. She went through the entire pregnancy without her partner. Then word came in that her hubby was returning home. Her only problem was their baby gave every indication he was ready to ruin the festivities.

Ortiz went into labor and the doctors said she should "stay put." To that Johana Ortiz, the weaker vessel, said, "I don't think so."

Against her doctor's orders, Ortiz drove three hours to meet her husband's plane at Camp Douglas. He was ordered to get off the plane first. He did. He then rushed to his wife, hugged her, and jumped in a car and drove to the hospital. Shortly afterward, she gave birth to their son, Eduardo.

The weaker vessel? Things aren't always what they appear to be.

That same thing could be said about Jesus.

After all, He was more than He appeared to be. Jesus appeared to be a rabbi, a teacher from Nazareth. He was far more than that. He was God's Son, the only perfect Person who has ever lived. He was our Redeemer and our Sacrifice, living a perfect life for us, suffering for us, carrying our sins, and dying the death which should have been ours.

Look at Jesus, and He appears to be a young carpenter. But He was -- and is -- so much more.

He is our Savior, our Forgiver of sin, our Giver of eternity.

THE PRAYER: Dear Lord God, how sad it is the world doesn't really see the Savior and all He has done for them. I pray You will send the Holy Spirit to the lost of this world so they may recognize Jesus and receive the forgiveness His sacrifice and resurrection provides. This I pray in Jesus' Name. Amen.



In Christ I remain His servant and yours,



Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker of The Lutheran HourŪ
Lutheran Hour Ministries
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Old 03-25-2010, 07:02 AM   #26
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"The Whole Truth And Nothing But . . ."

March 25, 2010



(Jesus said) "Sanctify them in the truth; Your Word is truth." John 17:17



Truth can be such an elusive little beastie.

For example, four friends from the Bronx are facing a year in jail. And are they deserving of this punishment? Well, it depends on whose story you believe.

The four pals say they were goofing around during a February storm when a snowball went off target and hit a policeman in the leg. Next thing they knew the policeman was waving his pistol at them and calling for back-up. The young men have been charged with criminal possession of a weapon (the snowball).

On the other hand, we have the story of the policeman who says he was walking toward his girlfriend's house when he was hit in the back by four snowballs. He kept walking, even though the boys called him all kinds of names. It was only when he heard someone shout, "Let's jump him!" that the officer pulled his gun, called for help, and had the boys arrested.

So, who is telling the truth? I don't know. I doubt if I'll ever know. Of course, the Lord can separate the truth from a lie, the wheat from chaff.

Anyone who has watched TV court shows knows that humankind has a marked tendency to play pretty fast and loose with the truth. It's a human trait. On the other hand, we are blessed to have a Lord who tells the truth -- every time. As Scripture says, His "Word is truth."

Note that it doesn't say God's Word has some of the truth, some of the time. It doesn't say God's Word gets close to the truth, or is near to the truth, or has one version of the truth. God's Word is truth, and it can be trusted.

And how do I know? I know because the biblical worldview makes more sense than does the explanation of anyone else. I know because I have seen God make promises, and I have also seen Him keep those promises. I know because I have read the prophets who made predictions about the Savior, and I have seen Jesus fulfill those prophecies with His life, His suffering, His death, and His resurrection.

How do I know? I know because God has always been there for me. Yes, I know that's pretty subjective. But so is my belief that my wife of 40 years still loves me. How do I know? In a million ways she shows me, so there is no doubt about her, and there is no doubt about the honesty of my truthful, Triune God.

THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, Satan has been called "the father of lies" (John 8:44b). Now he may be the father of lies but he has a very large family of liars. Help me avoid his lies and listen to You who are the source and center of all truth. In Jesus' Name I ask it. Amen.







In Christ I remain His servant and yours,



Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker of The Lutheran HourŪ
Lutheran Hour Ministries
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Old 03-26-2010, 06:54 AM   #27
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"Good News For The Poor"

March 26, 2010



He (Jesus) went to Nazareth, where He had been brought up, and on the Sabbath day He went into the synagogue, as was His custom. And He stood up to read. The scroll of the prophet Isaiah was handed to Him. Unrolling it, He found the place where it is written: "The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because He has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to release the oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor." Luke 4:16-19



Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ:

The salvation story of Jesus Christ reaches around the world. So that the readers of our Daily Devotion may see the power of the Savior on a global scale, we have asked the volunteers of our International Ministry Centers to write our Friday devotions. We pray that the Spirit may touch your day through their words.

In Christ, I remain, His servant and yours,
Kenneth R. Klaus
Speaker of The Lutheran Hour



The passage in Luke describes the day Jesus presented Himself at the town's synagogue. He came as one who is there to explain a plan. He had been put there by God to undo the great tragedy caused by humanity's disobedience. He had been anointed with the Holy Spirit's power, to be an obedient Servant until the end of His mission. The old prophecies of blessing, given to the patriarchs and prophets, would be fulfilled in Him.

Jesus' coming was good news for those who represented the least-favored parts of society. They were those who enjoyed fewer privileges. They were those who, according to traditional Judaism, were excluded from the Kingdom. They were those who had little to lose and everything to win. The first generation of believers was part of that social sector. A jubilee was now announced to them, a time in which debts were paid and the oppressed recovered their dignity.

The reality of salvation is the same today, and still there are many who completely miss the Good News of Jesus Christ. There are those who believe they can see but are blind, those who believe they are rich but are empty, and those who think they're free but are still tied to the powers of this world. Jesus offers His salvation to those who are aware they have nothing to offer and everything to receive. It is beautiful to see when God, working through His Gospel, restores the lives of those who are rejected into an eternal relationship with Himself through the redemptive work of Jesus.

THE PRAYER: Lord, give me a poor and humble heart to receive the gift of Your salvation. Free me of pride and help me look with mercy upon those You love. Make me an instrument to share Your Good News. Amen.

Biography of Author: This devotion is based on a text written by Antonio Schimpf, a professor at Concordia Seminary in Buenos Aires, Argentina. In this South American country of over 40 million people, Lutheran Hour Ministries -- known locally as Cristo Para Todas las Naciones (Christ for All Nations) -- connects with people through Project JOEL, Equipping the Saints (ETS), Bible Correspondence Courses (BCC), as well as by supporting church missions in Rosario, Tucuman, Salta, and Patagonia.


To learn more about our International Ministries, click here or visit www.lhmint.org.







Pastor Klaus returns
again tomorrow.
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Old 03-27-2010, 08:46 AM   #28
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"Peace"

March 27, 2010



(Jesus said) "Peace I leave with you; My peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. . . ." John 14:27a



Although it was frustrating when I was in school, there are times I'm glad I'm no genius when it comes to mathematics.

That's because I've figured out figuring can be pretty discouraging.

For example, people who are in a position to know have calculated that over the last 3,100 years of recorded world history, the nations of the earth have enjoyed peace about eight percent of the time.

Before you get your calculators out, let me tell you that is about 286 years.

Depressing? I'm not done. During that same period of time, around 8,000 treaties have been made -- and broken.

Yes, there are times when I'm glad I'm not good with numbers.

As I look at all the people I meet, I wonder what percentage of their days is filled with peace. Far too many of the folks I encounter think of peace as nothing more than a fairytale wish.

There is always something which seems to rob people of peace. It can be a big thing like war, or a less-global thing like the person who gossips about us or takes the parking place we were waiting for.

There's always something robbing us of peace.

That's why it's important for us to take all those peace-destroyers to the Lord. He is the only Person who can send them permanently packing.


From a devotion originally written for "By the Way"



THE PRAYER: Dear Jesus, sometimes there are peace-robbers surrounding me. Other times, my worries alone can make me miserable. I rejoice in Your forgiveness, in Your salvation, and in the peace which comes from living in Your presence. In Your Name I pray. Amen.



In Christ I remain His servant and yours,



Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker of The Lutheran HourŪ
Lutheran Hour Ministries
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Old 03-28-2010, 08:54 AM   #29
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"Responsibility"

March 28, 2010



. . . and the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin. If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:7b-9



Looking over the newspaper, an article caught my eye that told the story of a murderer who had just been sentenced.

His trial cost over $400,000 and had taken two months.

What interested me most was the man's defense. He said he had killed another human being because his wife had refused to make him coffee that morning. Now if you're thinking a lack of coffee might not be a good reason to murder someone, you would be right.

You are so right the murderer agrees with you. That's why he offered a second reason to explain what motivated his crime. Are you ready? You're not! If I gave you until St. Swithin's Day, you'd never guess his reason.

The man said he was forced to do what he did because his parents had gotten a divorce when he was three years old.

Still not enough to commit murder? You've right. The defense did have a third reason for the murder. The murdered person had made a face at the perpetrator of the crime.
That face-making incident was just too much.

That got me thinking: I wonder how often a judge hears someone stand up and confess, "Yes, your honor, I did it. I was totally out of control and nobody else is responsible." Most judges I think would consider that kind of confession a refreshing change.

In all probability, God, our just Judge feels the same way. Adam and Eve decided to pass the blame. Cain tried to bluff his way out of Abel's murder. David covered his adultery by adding the sin of murder. Scripture is filled with folks who pretend they're fine just the way they are.

The Lord knows differently.

He knows all of us are sinners. Mark that. We just don't do sinful things. We are sinners. And because we are helpless sinners Jesus came into this world.

The Christ's entire life -- from birth to crucifixion to resurrection and beyond -- was dedicated to saving our souls. The Innocent died for the guilty.

His is an act of grace unique in the annals of history. Jesus lived and died and rose so we might be forgiven and saved. Now, because of what Jesus has done, those who believe are washed, cleansed, and redeemed.

John said it rightly: "if we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness."

In that forgiveness, let us pray:


From a devotion originally written for "By the Way"



THE PRAYER: Dear Lord Jesus, forgive me for my many sins of thought, word, and deed. Grant me the grace to believe in the Savior, whose sacrifice forgives my sins and moves me from darkness into light. In His Name. Amen.



In Christ I remain His servant and yours,



Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker of The Lutheran HourŪ
Lutheran Hour Ministries
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