388 episodes

3 minute daily Bible reflections from Open the Bible UK, authored by Colin Smith, read by Sue McLeish.

Open the Bible UK Daily Colin Smith

    • Religion & Spirituality

3 minute daily Bible reflections from Open the Bible UK, authored by Colin Smith, read by Sue McLeish.

    Pray for Your Leaders

    Pray for Your Leaders

    Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they are keeping watch over your souls, as those who will have to give an account.Hebrews 13:17You are accountable for all that you have been given, and the more you have been given, the more accountable you are.
    That’s why the Bible urges us to pray for our leaders. Children, pray for your parents, because God has given them a big responsibility to lead you. Congregations, pray for your pastors and elders, because God has given them a big responsibility to lead His church. Citizens, pray for your prime minister, MPs and local leaders, because God has given them a big responsibility to lead your country.
    The God of the Bible holds leaders accountable, “Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they are keeping watch over your souls, as those who will have to give an account” (Heb. 13:17). On the last day, church leaders, for example, will have to answer questions like these:
    Have you been faithful to the gospel?
    Have you been a shepherd of the flock?
    Have you led the people to be wholehearted in fulfilling the Great Commission?
    Nobody should underestimate the responsibility that goes with the privilege of leadership. So, pray for your leaders, because they have been trusted with great responsibility before God.

    Take a moment to pray for those who are in leadership around you.

    • 2 min
    Who Can You Trust?

    Who Can You Trust?

    “Well done, good servant! Because you have been faithful in a very little, you shall have authority over ten cities.”Luke 19:17Jesus told a story about three servants who were trusted with investing money. Two of them did a good job. They were enterprising and showed themselves to be wise managers.
    In Matthew’s version, when the master returned, he said: “Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much” (Mat. 25:21).
    Jesus spells out the principle: “One who is faithful in a very little is also faithful in much, and one who is dishonest in a very little is also dishonest in much” (Lk. 16:10). That’s why God’s people are to select church leaders by looking at how candidates have handled other responsibilities like family and money (see Titus 1:5-9). Look at their track record.
    When you find yourself making choices that involve trust it’s worth asking: Where has this person proved faithful? This question will help keep you from trusting the wrong people. It is a great question to ask when you are choosing leaders, friends, employees, or a spouse. It is also a good question to ask when you are deciding whether or not you can trust someone to keep a secret, or when you are deciding what freedoms to allow your children.
    When you see people who have proved faithful in what has already been entrusted to them, you can be confident in trusting them with more.

    How are you handling the responsibilities that God has already given you?

    • 2 min
    What Has God Entrusted to You?

    What Has God Entrusted to You?

    Everyone to whom much was given, of him much will be required…Luke 12:48It is worth taking a moment to think about what God has entrusted to you. Here are some areas to reflect on.
    Relationships. Your relationships are a trust from God. Every wedding reminds us that one person’s happiness is largely entrusted into the hands of another. When a child is born, he or she is entrusted to parents. Friends influence one another. Your friends are a trust from God.
    Work. Your work is a trust from your employer, and ultimately from God. Teachers, you’ve been trusted with students. Nurses and doctors, you’ve been trusted with patients. Investors, you’ve been trusted with other people’s money. Pastors and missionaries, you’ve been trusted with the Bible and the care of God's flock.
    Gifts. Your gifts are a trust from God—your hands and your mind, your creativity and your enterprise, your love for children, your way of speaking to others about the gospel. You are accountable for how you use these gifts.
    Ministry. If you serve on boards or committees, certain responsibilities have been entrusted to you. You may have a Sunday school class or a Bible study group. Whatever your ministry is, it is a trust from God. We are accountable for our stewardship of ministry.
    Money. The money that passes through your hands is a trust from God.
    Gospel. If you are a Christian, you’ve been trusted with the gospel. We are to guard the gospel and contend for the gospel. We are responsible to proclaim it and to live it.
    You will find in life that if you are faithful with what God has entrusted to you, God will trust you with more. It’s true with money. It's true with responsibility, influence, ministry, and friendship.

    What have you been trusted with? Make a list.

    • 3 min
    The God Who Holds Leaders Accountable

    The God Who Holds Leaders Accountable

    Hear, you heads of Jacob and rulers of the house of Israel!Micah 3:1The Bible has a great deal to say about leadership. Some positions of leadership are elected. That is, people make a choice through a process of voting, by which they trust the task of leadership to people who are willing to take that responsibility.
    This is what happens in a democracy, and it is also what happens in many churches. Leadership is a trust given by the people. But even when there is no voting involved, leadership is still a trust from God. Nobody votes on the birth of a baby, but when a child is born, the father and mother are given a trust by God.
    The apostle Paul said that all governing authorities are established by God (Rom. 13:1-2), and the Roman Empire was hardly a model of democracy. So, even when governments are not elected by the people, Paul says, “the authorities are established by God,” and that means they are accountable to God.
    All leadership involves a gift of trust, and all leaders are therefore accountable. The same is true in your work. Whatever authority or responsibility you have was given to you by someone else, and you are accountable to them for the way that you use it.

    Think of a person in authority over you (a parent, boss, teacher, pastor, political leader, etc.) who’s been given responsibility and is accountable for how they use it. How does that make you feel, to be aware of their responsibility and accountability?

    • 2 min
    If God Speaks, That Changes Everything

    If God Speaks, That Changes Everything

    “Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts.”Hebrews 4:7God is speaking. And He says two things that He will do: Some time ago, Professor Don Carson was asked to speak at Cambridge University. When he had finished his presentation on biblical Christianity, one of the faculty got up and asked: “So what you’re saying is… if God is a talking God, that changes everything?”
    This highly educated man had obviously never encountered biblical Christianity before. The idea that there might be a God who speaks, and therefore could be known, had evidently never occurred to him. The professor offered a brilliant summary of biblical Christianity: “If God is a talking God, that changes everything.”
    If God has spoken, you can know Him. If God does not speak, there’s no way you can know Him. But if God speaks, that changes everything. God has spoken because He wants to be known. You can respond to Him in faith and obedience. You can know the love of the Creator who reaches out to you in Jesus Christ.
    If God has spoken, you can know the truth. If God had not spoken, then you would have your opinion and others would have their opinions. But if God speaks, that changes everything. If God speaks, then His Word is the truth, against which all opinions must be measured, and there is a foundation on which you can build your life.
    If God has spoken, you must listen to what He says. If God did not speak, then how you live is up to you. But if God speaks, that changes everything. There will be a Day of Judgment when every person who has ever lived, including you, will stand before Him. Jesus came into the world so you could be freed from your past sins and brought into a new relationship with God.

    When you hear the Word of God are you listening as if God speaks, or as if He doesn’t?

    • 3 min
    The Tragedy of the False Prophet

    The Tragedy of the False Prophet

    “Do not preach”—thus they preach— “one should not preach of such things; disgrace will not overtake us.”Micah 2:6When Micah spoke the Word of God, there were strong voices in the community that did not want to hear it.
    The first marker of the false prophet is that he or she brings comfort to people who are still in their sins: “Micah, you talk about judgement from God. How can that be? We are the most blessed people on the face of the earth!” So, the false prophets brought an alternative message that proved to be very attractive to many people.
    The second marker of the false prophet is that he or she deceives the complacent: “If a man should go about and utter wind and lies, saying, ‘I will preach to you of wine and strong drink,’ he would be the preacher for this people!” (2:11).
    Many people today are looking for religious leaders who will enjoy a pint of beer and not talk too much about God. Many are looking for a minister who will run the public services—baptisms, weddings, and funerals—and who will affirm us all on our pathway through life but won’t disturb our way of life by talking about God. And, under no circumstances, would he or she ever suggest that there might be something we need to deal with before God.
    While God speaks about judgement and salvation, the false prophet comforts the wicked (2:6) and deceives the complacent (2:11). The voice of the false prophet can be clearly heard around our country today. But the tragedy of the false prophet is that he actually leads you away from God.

    Ask God to deliver you from the seductive lies of false prophets.

    • 2 min

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