A daily, Bible-based message of hope and encouragement.
Having trouble reading this message? Read online
The on line Bible teaching ministry of Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
A daily, Bible-based perspective of hope, encouragement and exhortation.
Home About Us Archives Free email subscription Listen to these messages
Text only for printing
Follow Daily Encouragement on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn
See here for more info.
<Previous Message · Archive edition
Monday, February 16, 2015
Early Sunday morning it was clear but very windy with temps in the single digits.
Snow drifts had essentially blocked us in and many churches cancelled including our own.
"Considering Their Threats"
Listen to this message on your audio player.
Note: Today's message is a followup to the message we wrote Thursday on the "Hidden Heroes" of those suffering for Christ.
"Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak Your word with great boldness" (Acts 4:29).
We have a reader in Pakistan that sent us photos this morning of his evangelist father praying for the sick at Christian gatherings in his country. Of course his life is under great threat. This morning I read of the beheading of 21 Coptic Christians in Libya.
All throughout the Islamic world our brothers and sisters in Christ are under extreme danger, enduring persecution while many are dying daily for their faith. The cursed lie that this is a religion of peace must be exposed. Just consider the strife in so many countries that are Muslim dominated. Consider the inability of Christians, Jews and other religions, to freely practice their faith in even "moderate" Muslim countries. Can anyone name a single Muslim dominated country where people of faith are invited to practice their Christian convictions safely and unhindered? Yet in the last couple of weeks a prominent leader in our country proclaimed that 99.9% of Muslims are moderate and peaceful!
Certainly it's not only Muslim countries that threaten Christians. In China our brethren face persecution as well as other countries. We have a long-time reader from China who reported how church buildings in his city are being demolished since the Church is seen as a threat to the secular government.
He shared about the work of the Holy Spirit going forth in the city where he lives with many turning to Christ. It touches our hearts to see our Chinese brothers and sisters worshipping Jesus at a great personal cost! (Sharing facial photos on this site could jeopardize believers but this photo is a reminder that all over the world, the Spirit is moving! This photo is posted with our reader's permission.)
Here in America one can sense the winds of persecution as we read our Bibles and tune in regularly to the news events. Consider those who act in Biblical conviction regarding moral issues. Even those who assert the Biblical teaching on marriage are labeled as hateful. All over the country business owners who do not accede to the demands of activists are facing persecution such as a husband and wife who own a bakery in Oregon. They were recently fined $150,000.00 for their unwillingness to bake a wedding cake for a same sex couple's "wedding", due to their biblical views regarding marriage between a man and a woman.
The early church knew threats and persecution. Within the context of the daily text Peter and John had already been imprisoned for their faith and, in the coming days, they would again be imprisoned and flogged. They did not know the outcome at the time and later Stephen would become the very first recorded Christian martyr.
In Acts 4:24-30 we have one of the great prayers of the Bible. Peter and John's prayer petition was not, as we might expect, for God to remove the threat or opposition, nor was it an appeal for an easy life. Jesus had made it very clear they would face opposition and they seemed to have accepted this. There is no mention in the prayer for protection or deliverance, which on the balance of Scripture is certainly appropriate, but they lifted an impassioned cry to heaven, "Enable your servants to speak Your word with great boldness."
We belong to a worldwide family of believers. John, in the book of Revelation, records this about Jesus, "With Your blood you purchased men for God from every tribe and language and people and nation" (Revelation 5:9). Today let us pray for our spiritual family, certainly considering their protection and deliverance from evil. But let us also pray that God will "enable Your servants to speak Your Word with great boldness" (verse 31). Their prayer was answered as the Spirit-empowered disciples went forth and "began to speak the Word of God with boldness."
The next chapter discloses ongoing and increasing persecution and ends with this summary: "Day after day, in the temple courts and from house to house, they never stopped teaching and proclaiming the good news that Jesus is the Christ".
Then the focus turns to Stephen who, instead of being on the defensive, boldly proclaims Christ through sharing his personal faith about Israel's relationship with God from the Old Testament up to the present time when he refers to those who betrayed and crucified Christ. Stephen's persecution and martyrdom is recorded in the Scriptures and the list goes on through the remainder of the New Testament, throughout the church age till this very day; the unsung heroes, both men and women, who are boldly standing for and declaring their faith in Christ no matter the cost.
We are all called to be a part of this faithful proclamation! We must ask, "Am I doing my part?"
All over the world, today, O God may your Word indeed be proclaimed with great boldness. "Stretch out Your hand to heal and perform miraculous signs and wonders through the name of your holy servant Jesus" (Acts 4:30).
Be encouraged today,
Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
Daily prayer: Father, in this depraved generation, darkness is broadly sweeping across the land. At one time morality and virtuous behavior was applauded, but we now live in a time where good is called evil and evil is called good. Those who uphold Biblical truths are seen as archaic, old-fashioned, unenlightened. May we not be confused by where the line crosses Your perfect will for our lives. We know in our hearts that teachings or lifestyles that defy Your holy Word is evil, not good. "Enable us to speak Your Word with great boldness" like Peter on the Day of Pentecost and Stephen prior to his stoning. May we not be intimidated or allow ourselves to be bullied into supporting a position that contradicts that which is revealed in Your Holy Word. We rely on the power of Your Holy Spirit to live out our lives in a way that honors You and shows others the way to heaven. In Jesus' name we pray. Amen.
Beginning Saturday night, on Sunday, and still today we have a blustery blast of very cold weather with temps at zero when we awoke this morning. We thought we would share some winter photos from our neck of the woods! Although we are getting the cold he have not gotten lots of snow such as the folks in New England who see mounds of 6 feet in some areas.
Ester's grandfather (Brooksyne's dad) gave her a stuffed Scooby-Doo stuffed dog over 15 years ago and she won't part with it. Now we allow him to "guard" our property as Dottie looks on! I wonder which would scare away the prowler?
Knowing the winter blast was coming we wrapped Scooby-Doo up in an old quilt.
View out our front window early Sunday morning.
Our side yard. Actually we didn't get much snow as can be seen on our neighbor's lawn. It just blew into drifts.
When I opened our lower door the blowing snow had managed to come in right through the storm door.
I went out to check on Dottie who stays in the barn. She was in the barn loft all bundled up and Mollie is checking on her. Notice all the snow that blew in through the cracks around the loft door! She's now indoors till the cold passes.
The inside of our garden shed was covered in snow.
The snow drifts in the front part of our driveway.
Thankfully it's a very light snow and I can move it easily.
Mollie is always ready to play frisbee and will trudge up the snow drift as needed!
Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources
"Don't Forget Us" Video Written and arranged by Gary Lanier, is a heart cry song from the Persecuted Church asking the Church at large to never forget them, continually lifting them up in prayer.
"We Will Hold On" Video Paul Baloche
"Wear The Crown" Video Bill Drake Written in response to the martyrdom of Bonnie Witherall
"Martyr's Song" Video Todd Agnew
"Only Our God And King" Video David Page
"Monuments" Video Legacy Five
"His Life For Mine" Video The Talley Trio
Stephen and Brooksyne Weber
(Click on photo to enlarge)
"We want to encourage you daily in your walk with Christ!"
Personal Ministry Update (Revised 12/10/14)
Are our daily encouragement messages a blessing to you? Each weekday morning Brooksyne and I prepare these messages and distribute them at no cost to you and many others all over the world. We ask you to consider an offering to Daily Encouragement Net so that we can continue to prepare and provide this daily resource which is accessed by believers and seekers all over the world. Daily Encouragement Net relies solely on the generosity and financial support of its readers and podcast listeners. See here for more information on supporting this ministry. Gifts are tax deductible. Click here to donate online.
2015 YTD offerings to Daily Encouragement Net: $1,591.00 We express thanks to all who support our ministry!
If this email was forwarded to you, you can subscribe here.
These messages are never sent by us unsolicited. It was sent to you because you either signed up to receive it OR it was forwarded to you. You can also subscribe to the Wordpress rss feed or as an email subscription through Wordpress email subscription. (See the email subscription on the right side after opening this page.) Cancel: These messages are only sent from us to people who request it; please accept our apologies if it reached you in error. You can unsubscribe from this list at any time. If you no longer desire to receive these messages you can remove your address from the list by merely using the link automatically inserted by the mailing list software at the very bottom of each email message. (To change addresses cancel your old address and then join again using your new address.)
Weekly Version: The weekly version is intended for those who may not check their email regularly or who may desire less frequent mailings. It is Friday's message with a link to previous messages. To receive the free weekly version, send a blank email to this address.
Daily Encouragement on Facebook and Twitter:
The daily message and prayer on Facebook.
The daily message and prayer on Twitter.
Reader Survey: Please take a few minutes to assist us in improving our ministry effectiveness by filling out this online reader survey. To take the survey click here. Your answers are anonymous and I we are unable to respond. If you want to send a personal message use the
Please feel free to pass these messages on!
Our other blogs:
"A Daily Prayer" - A blog simply posting the daily prayer. We keep this up each day since it's merely the prayer from the Daily Encouragement Net message!
"A Little Foolishness" - Humor/satire blog (a great outlet for non-serious writing but at times with a subtle message!) (Note: This material is satire!)
"Clear Minded" - Longer, periodic articles on specific issues impacting the faithful believer and church. (Actually this is my intent but I haven't done much with it!)
"Hymns of Hope" - Brooksyne along with two friends made a CD using classic hymns. Brooksyne tells the background story of the 11 hymns. All of these songs are also available for download on the site.
Personal Mission Statement "I am created by God to bring Him glory. Through God's Son Jesus Christ I have been redeemed and make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."
How to become a child of God
Scripture references are from The Holy Bible: New International Version. © 1984 by International* The phrase "terrestrial ball" is found in the great hymn ...
"All Hail The Power Of Jesus Name" Video Paul Baloche Bible Society; NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1995 by The Lockman Foundation, New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. and the King James Version. Other versions are also occasionally used.
© Copyright 2015 Stephen C. Weber - All Rights Reserved
"Living securely today anchored in God's solid foundation"
Daily Encouragement is issued Monday-Friday. To make sure you continue to receive these e-mails in your Inbox (so they're not sent to a junk folder), please add firstname.lastname@example.org to your address book or safe sender list. You are receiving these recurring messages as a subscriber to Daily Encouragement Net because you signed up on our website or otherwise requested it unless someone forwarded the message to you. If you desire to unsubscribe use the link below. However, please do not use this link unless your address is the subscribed address below as you will otherwise unsubscribe the person who forwarded it to you!
|You are currently subscribed to dailyencouragement as: email@example.com |
Add firstname.lastname@example.org to your email address book to ensure delivery.
|Forward to a Friend | Manage Subscription | Subscribe | Unsubscribe | Snooze |