Today’s devotion comes from Mark 9:30-37.  Here is a link to this Scripture –

I quote only the following verses.

“They came to Capernaum;  and when He was in the house, He began to question them, “What were you discussing on the way?”  But they kept silent, for on the way they had discussed with one another which of them was the greatest.  Sitting down, He called the twelve and *said to them, “If anyone wants to be first, he shall be last of all and servant of all.”  Taking a child, He set him before them, and taking him in His arms, He said to them, “Whoever receives one child like this in My name receives Me;  and whoever receives Me does not receive Me, but Him who sent Me.”  Mark 9:33-37.


It is difficult enough to merely understand how one can be first by being “last of all and servant of all.”  The world considers it foolishness at once and gives it no further thought.  Even Christians may rush through this Scripture onto the next one without giving it due thought.

But, it is even more difficult to want and be “last of all and servant of all.”  “For the flesh sets its desire against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh;  for these are in opposition to one another, so that you may not do the things that you please.”  Galatians 5:17.

It helps us take the first step of at least trying to understand Jesus’ statement by considering Jesus’ example:  “just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.”  Matthew 20:26.

And, it helps us to take the second step of wanting to be “last of all and servant of all.” by realizing the reward of doing so.  “Whoever receives one child like this in My name receives Me;  and whoever receives Me does not receive Me, but Him who sent Me.”  Verse 37.

But, we need more than just understanding the rewards of being “last of all and servant of all.”  We need God’s Spirit which produces the fruit of the Spirit.  “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control;  against such things there is no law.”  Galatians 5:22-23.

“… through love serve one another.”  Galatians 5:13.

But, this is not our human love which is really only self-centered and self-interested.

We need God’s love;  “the fruit of the Spirit is love”, and through this love, “serve one another.”

Today’s devotion comes from Mark 9:9-29.  Here is a link to this Scripture –

I quote only the following verses.

“When they came back to the disciples, they saw a large crowd around them, and some scribes arguing with them.  Immediately, when the entire crowd saw Him, they were amazed and began running up to greet Him.  And He asked them, “What are you discussing with them?”  And one of the crowd answered Him, “Teacher, I brought You my son, possessed with a spirit which makes him mute;  and whenever it seizes him, it slams him to the ground and he foams at the mouth, and grinds his teeth and stiffens out.  I told Your disciples to cast it out, and they could not do it.”  And He *answered them and *said, “O unbelieving generation, how long shall I be with you?  How long shall I put up with you?  Bring him to Me!”  They brought the boy to Him.  When he saw Him, immediately the spirit threw him into a convulsion, and falling to the ground, he began rolling around and foaming at the mouth.  And He asked his father, “How long has this been happening to him?”  And he said, “From childhood.  It has often thrown him both into the fire and into the water to destroy him.  But if You can do anything, take pity on us and help us!”  And Jesus said to him, “‘If You can?’  All things are possible to him who believes.”  Immediately the boy’s father cried out and said, “I do believe;  help my unbelief.”  When Jesus saw that a crowd was rapidly gathering, He rebuked the unclean spirit, saying to it, “You deaf and mute spirit, I command you, come out of him and do not enter him again.”  After crying out and throwing him into terrible convulsions, it came out;  and the boy became so much like a corpse that most of them said, “He is dead!”  But Jesus took him by the hand and raised him;  and he got up.  When He came into the house, His disciples began questioning Him privately, “Why could we not drive it out?”  And He said to them, “This kind cannot come out by anything but prayer.”  Mark 9:14-29.


In today’s Scripture, we will meditate on Jesus’ statement:  “All things are possible to him who believes.” and the father’s statement:  “I do believe;  help my unbelief.”

First, regarding “All things are possible to him who believes.”, this is not a faith that we create or generate or “drum up” by our own ability;  it is a faith that we receive from Christ and that faith is His instrument for His purpose.

“Simon Peter, a bond-servant and apostle of Jesus Christ,

To those who have received a faith of the same kind as ours, by the righteousness of our God and Savior, Jesus Christ:  Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord;  seeing that His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence.”  2 Peter 1:1-3.

“I can do all things through Him (Christ) who strengthens me.”  Philippians 4:13.

“For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.”  Ephesians 2:10.

“for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure.”  Philippians 2:13.

Second, regarding “I do believe;  help my unbelief.”, God understands our weaknesses and can and does sympathize with our weaknesses, and God helps our weaknesses.

“A bruised reed He will not break
And a dimly burning wick He will not extinguish;
He will faithfully bring forth justice.”  Isaiah 42:3.

“In the same way the Spirit also helps our weakness;  for we do not know how to pray as we should, but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words;  and He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.”  Romans 8:26-27.

“For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin.  Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.”  Hebrews 4:15-16.

Posted by: Bill Hornbeck | September 16, 2018

“This is My beloved Son, listen to Him!”

Today’s devotion comes from Mark 9:1-8.

“And Jesus was saying to them, “Truly I say to you, there are some of those who are standing here who will not taste death until they see the kingdom of God after it has come with power.”

Six days later, Jesus *took with Him Peter and James and John, and *brought them up on a high mountain by themselves.  And He was transfigured before them;  and His garments became radiant and exceedingly white, as no launderer on earth can whiten them.  Elijah appeared to them along with Moses;  and they were talking with Jesus.  Peter *said to Jesus, “Rabbi, it is good for us to be here;  let us make three tabernacles, one for You, and one for Moses, and one for Elijah.”  For he did not know what to answer;  for they became terrified.  Then a cloud formed, overshadowing them, and a voice came out of the cloud, “This is My beloved Son, listen to Him!”  All at once they looked around and saw no one with them anymore, except Jesus alone.”  Mark 9:1-8.


We point to Jesus and His works and His words, and then we disappear.

Some like to talk.

We listen to God.

“This is My beloved Son, listen to Him!”

“For the Law was given through Moses;  grace and truth were realized through Jesus Christ.”  John 1:17.

Q. 30.  Do such then believe in Jesus the only Savior, who seek their salvation and welfare of saints, of themselves, or anywhere else?

A.  They do not;  for though they boast of Him in words, yet in deeds they deny Jesus the only deliverer and Savior;  for one of these two things must be true, either that Jesus is not a complete Savior, or that they who by a true faith receive this Savior must find all things in Him necessary to their salvation.  Heidelberg Catechism.

“All things have been handed over to Me by My Father;  and no one knows the Son except the Father;  nor does anyone know the Father except the Son, and anyone to whom the Son wills to reveal Him.”  Matthew 11:27.

“For He rescued us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.

He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation.  For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things have been created through Him and for Him.  He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together.  He is also head of the body, the church;  and He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, so that He Himself will come to have first place in everything.  For it was the Father’s good pleasure for all the fullness to dwell in Him, and through Him to reconcile all things to Himself, having made peace through the blood of His cross;  through Him, I say, whether things on earth or things in heaven.”  Colossians 1:13-20.

“For in Him all the fullness of Deity dwells in bodily form, and in Him you have been made complete, and He is the head over all rule and authority;  and in Him you were also circumcised with a circumcision made without hands, in the removal of the body of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ;  having been buried with Him in baptism, in which you were also raised up with Him through faith in the working of God, who raised Him from the dead.  When you were dead in your transgressions and the uncircumcision of your flesh, He made you alive together with Him, having forgiven us all our transgressions, having canceled out the certificate of debt consisting of decrees against us, which was hostile to us;  and He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross.  When He had disarmed the rulers and authorities, He made a public display of them, having triumphed over them through Him.”  Colossians 2:9-15.

Today’s devotion comes from Mark 8:34-38.

“And He summoned the crowd with His disciples, and said to them, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me.  For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake and the gospel’s will save it.  For what does it profit a man to gain the whole world, and forfeit his soul?  For what will a man give in exchange for his soul?  For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will also be ashamed of him when He comes in the glory of His Father with the holy angels.”  Mark 8:34-38.


At the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus considered all of the suffering that He would experience which would conclude with the loss of His life, and He began to pray “saying, “Father, if You are willing, remove this cup from Me;  yet not My will, but Yours be done.”  Luke 22:42.

Jesus literally lost His life.  “But God raised Him up again, putting an end to the agony of death, since it was impossible for Him to be held in its power.”  Acts 2:24.

We may not literally lose our life, but we will lose our will being done for our life, and instead, God’s Will for our life will be done.  We may not be rich and famous as we may have hoped.  We may be a missionary or a minister.  Or, we may also be a farmer, the salt of the earth, who is also an elder of a church in a small farming community.  We may be a Christian school teacher.  Or, we may also be a “stay at home” mother in obscurity taking care of her husband and children.  But, for Christ’s sake, God will save our life and use our life to accomplish the purpose of Christ and kingdom of Christ.

But, there is also the aspect of losing our life for “gospel’s sake”.

Other doctrine tries to save its life by claiming that its own alleged free-will is the determining factor as who will be saved.  Other doctrine vainly tries to save the pride of man and cries out:  “My will, not Your will, be done!”

But, Reformed Doctrine loses its pride and its grip on alleged free-will in humble admission of its “Total Depravity” and in humble submission to the sovereignty of God as the determining factor as who will be saved.  Reformed Doctrine cries out:  “Thy will, not my will, be done!”

Reformed Doctrine is often ridiculed, but it is in conformity to the Scriptures and is in recognition and submission to “Unconditional Election”, the Will of God as to who will be saved, which is the “U” of “TULIP”, the Five Points of Calvinism, the Reformed Doctrine of Salvation.

For Reformed Doctrine, there is only one gospel as more fully summarized in the Canons of Dordt, and it is based on God’s Will, God’s “Unconditional Election”.  It may be difficult to find a church that faithfully preaches and teaches it, and as we search for it, we may lose favor with churches and denominations and Christian family and friends, and in that sense lose our life for the gospel’s sake, but that is the only gospel that we seek and that is the only gospel that will save us.

“Article 15.  …  Satan abhors it;  the world ridicules it;  the ignorant and hypocrite abuse, and heretics oppose it;  but the spouse of Christ hath always most tenderly loved and constantly defended it, as an inestimable treasure;  and God, against whom neither counsel nor strength can prevail, will dispose her to continue this conduct to the end.  Now, to this one God, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, be honor and glory, forever. AMEN.  FIFTH HEAD OF DOCTRINE Of the Perseverance of the Saints of Canons of Dordt.

“… not My will, but Yours be done.”  Luke 22:42.

Today’s devotion comes from Mark 8:27-33.

“Jesus went out, along with His disciples, to the villages of Caesarea Philippi;  and on the way He questioned His disciples, saying to them, “Who do people say that I am?”  They told Him, saying, “John the Baptist;  and others say Elijah;  but others, one of the prophets.”  And He continued by questioning them, “But who do you say that I am?”  Peter *answered and *said to Him, “You are the Christ.”  And He warned them to tell no one about Him.

And He began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and the chief priests and the scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again.  And He was stating the matter plainly.  And Peter took Him aside and began to rebuke Him.  But turning around and seeing His disciples, He rebuked Peter and *said, “Get behind Me, Satan;  for you are not setting your mind on God’s interests, but man’s.”  Mark 8:27-33.


Man’s interests for Jesus would likely be to set up Jesus as some earthly king who would do what they want such as to protect them and bestow favors of their choice on them.

But, God’s interests was to redeem His elect through the death of Christ.  “And He began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and the chief priests and the scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again.”  Verse 31.

Article 8.  For this was the sovereign counsel, and most gracious will and purpose of God the Father, that the quickening and saving efficacy of the most precious death of his Son should extend to all the elect, for bestowing upon them alone the gift of justifying faith, thereby to bring them infallibly to salvation:  that is, it was the will of God, that Christ by the blood of the cross, whereby he confirmed the new covenant, should effectually redeem out of every people, tribe, nation, and language, all those, and those only, who were from eternity chosen to salvation, and given to him by the Father; that he should confer upon them faith, which together with all the other saving gifts of the Holy Spirit, he purchased for them by his death;  should purge them from all sin, both original and actual, whether committed before or after believing;  and having faithfully preserved them even to the end, should at last bring them free from every spot and blemish to the enjoyment of glory in his own presence forever.

Article 9.  This purpose proceeding from everlasting love towards the elect, has from the beginning of the world to this day been powerfully accomplished, and will henceforward still continue to be accomplished, notwithstanding all the ineffectual opposition of the gates of hell, so that the elect in due time may be gathered together into one, and that there never may be wanting a church composed of believers, the foundation of which is laid in the blood of Christ, which may steadfastly love, and faithfully serve him as their Savior, who as a bridegroom for his bride, laid down his life for them upon the cross, and which may celebrate his praises here and through all eternity.   SECOND HEAD OF DOCTRINE Of the Death of Christ, and the Redemption of Men Thereby of Canons of Dordt.

“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we would be holy and blameless before Him.  In love He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, which He freely bestowed on us in the Beloved.  In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace which He lavished on us.  In all wisdom and insight He made known to us the mystery of His will, according to His kind intention which He purposed in Him”  Ephesians 1:3-9.

Today’s devotion comes from Mark 8:22-26.

“And they *came to Bethsaida.  And they *brought a blind man to Jesus and *implored Him to touch him.  Taking the blind man by the hand, He brought him out of the village; and after spitting on his eyes and laying His hands on him, He asked him, “Do you see anything?”  And he looked up and said, “I see men, for I see them like trees, walking around.”  Then again He laid His hands on his eyes;  and he looked intently and was restored, and began to see everything clearly.  And He sent him to his home, saying, “Do not even enter the village.”   Mark 8:22-26.


Jesus did not need two attempts to heal the blind man.

“‘Ah Lord GOD!  Behold, You have made the heavens and the earth by Your great power and by Your outstretched arm!  Nothing is too difficult for You,” Jeremiah 32:17.

Jesus did not need to ask the blind man:  “Do you see anything?”

“Even before there is a word on my tongue,
Behold, O LORD, You know it all.”  Psalm 139:4.

Jesus did the healing in two attempts and asked that question for the benefit of the blind man and to teach us a lesson today.

The blind man could have been satisfied with seeing something.  The blind man could have simply and truthfully answered:  “Yes.”  Note that Jesus did not ask him about the quality of his new vision, but simply asked him:  “Do you see anything?”

The blind man went beyond thus just answering Jesus question by a simple “Yes” to fully disclose exactly what He saw (and needed – more healing):  “I see men, for I see them like trees, walking around.”

“Trust in Him at all times, O people;
Pour out your heart before Him;
God is a refuge for us.  Selah.”  Psalm 62:8.

“Blessed be the Lord, who daily bears our burden,
The God who is our salvation. Selah.”  Psalm 68:19.

“Even to your old age I will be the same,
And even to your graying years I will bear you!
I have done it, and I will carry you;
And I will bear you and I will deliver you.”  Isaiah 46:4.

casting all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you.”  1 Peter 5:7.

Today’s devotion comes from Mark 8:11-21.

“The Pharisees came out and began to argue with Him, seeking from Him a sign from heaven, to test Him.  Sighing deeply in His spirit, He *said, “Why does this generation seek for a sign?  Truly I say to you, no sign will be given to this generation.”  Leaving them, He again embarked and went away to the other side.

And they had forgotten to take bread, and did not have more than one loaf in the boat with them.  And He was giving orders to them, saying, “Watch out!  Beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and the leaven of Herod.”  They began to discuss with one another the fact that they had no bread.  And Jesus, aware of this, *said to them, “Why do you discuss the fact that you have no bread?  Do you not yet see or understand?  Do you have a hardened heart?  HAVING EYES, DO YOU NOT SEE?  AND HAVING EARS, DO YOU NOT HEAR?  And do you not remember, when I broke the five loaves for the five thousand, how many baskets full of broken pieces you picked up?”  They *said to Him, “Twelve.”  “When I broke the seven for the four thousand, how many large baskets full of broken pieces did you pick up?”  And they *said to Him, “Seven.”  And He was saying to them, “Do you not yet understand?”  Mark 8:11-21.


We do not need a sign;  we need You, Heavenly Father, as our Guide.

We do not need an arrow in the skies to point our way;  we need Your Word.

“Your word is a lamp to my feet
And a light to my path.”  Psalm 119:105.

“For such is God,
Our God forever and ever;
He will guide us until death.”  Psalm 48:14.

“23 Nevertheless I am continually with You;
You have taken hold of my right hand.
24 With Your counsel You will guide me,
And afterward receive me to glory.”  Psalm 73:23-24.

“52 But He led forth His own people like sheep
And guided them in the wilderness like a flock;
53 He led them safely, so that they did not fear;
But the sea engulfed their enemies.

54 So He brought them to His holy land,
To this hill country which His right hand had gained.”  Psalm 78:52-54.

“Then they were glad because they were quiet,
So He guided them to their desired haven.”  Psalm 107:30.

“But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth;  for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak;  and He will disclose to you what is to come.”  John 16:13.

Today’s devotion comes from Mark 8:1-10.

“In those days, when there was again a large crowd and they had nothing to eat, Jesus called His disciples and *said to them, “I feel compassion for the people because they have remained with Me now three days and have nothing to eat.  If I send them away hungry to their homes, they will faint on the way;  and some of them have come from a great distance.”  And His disciples answered Him, “Where will anyone be able to find enough bread here in this desolate place to satisfy these people?”  And He was asking them, “How many loaves do you have?”  And they said, “Seven.”  And He *directed the people to sit down on the ground;  and taking the seven loaves, He gave thanks and broke them, and started giving them to His disciples to serve to them, and they served them to the people.  They also had a few small fish;  and after He had blessed them, He ordered these to be served as well.  And they ate and were satisfied;  and they picked up seven large baskets full of what was left over of the broken pieces.  About four thousand were there;  and He sent them away.  And immediately He entered the boat with His disciples and came to the district of Dalmanutha.”  Mark 8:1-10.


Jesus said:  “I feel compassion for the people because they have remained with Me now three days and have nothing to eat.”  So. let us look at what these people did and what Jesus did for them.

These people did not worry about what they would eat.  They sought Christ, His kingdom, and His righteousness and remained to hear the teachings of Christ for three days despite having nothing to eat.  Jesus gave them enough tangible bread and fish to satisfy their physical hunger.  And, Jesus gave them enough spiritual bread to satisfy their hunger for righteousness.

“Do not worry then, saying, ‘What will we eat?’ or ‘What will we drink?’ or ‘What will we wear for clothing?’  For the Gentiles eagerly seek all these things;  for your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things.  But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.”  Matthew 6:31-33.

“Do not work for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give to you, for on Him the Father, God, has set His seal.”  John 6:27.

“Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life;  he who comes to Me will not hunger, and he who believes in Me will never thirst.”  John 6:35.

“Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.”  Matthew 5:6.

Posted by: Bill Hornbeck | September 9, 2018

“He has done all things well”

Today’s devotion comes from Mark 7:31-37.

“Again He went out from the region of Tyre, and came through Sidon to the Sea of Galilee, within the region of Decapolis.  They *brought to Him one who was deaf and spoke with difficulty, and they *implored Him to lay His hand on him.  Jesus took him aside from the crowd, by himself, and put His fingers into his ears, and after spitting, He touched his tongue with the saliva;  and looking up to heaven with a deep sigh, He *said to him, “Ephphatha!” that is, “Be opened!”  And his ears were opened, and the impediment of his tongue was removed, and he began speaking plainly.  And He gave them orders not to tell anyone;  but the more He ordered them, the more widely they continued to proclaim it.  They were utterly astonished, saying, “He has done all things well;  He makes even the deaf to hear and the mute to speak.”  Mark 7:31-37.


Other doctrine is more interested in what it can do well.

But, Reformed Doctrine is much more interested in what God does well and it studies God and His works.

Here are three things upon which we will meditate from today’s Scripture that Jesus did well.

First, and most obvious, Jesus completely healed the deaf and mute man.

Second, Jesus did the “multi-tasking” well in healing both of the separate afflictions in one healing.

Third, Jesus cared about how the deaf and man would feel about the manner of healing and made provision to deal with the man’s feelings by taking the man away from the crowd to obtain some privacy.  Although we do not know why Jesus performed the healing in the odd way through His fingers in the man’s ears and through His spitting (apparently in His own hand) to use His own saliva to touch the man’s tongue, we do understand that all of this means of healing would likely embarrass the man and that Jesus cared about how the man would feel by His action and took him aside from the crowd to eliminate or at least minimize the man’s embarrassment.

“3 Great is the LORD, and highly to be praised,
And His greatness is unsearchable.
4 One generation shall praise Your works to another,
And shall declare Your mighty acts.
5 On the glorious splendor of Your majesty
And on Your wonderful works, I will meditate.
6 Men shall speak of the power of Your awesome acts,
And I will tell of Your greatness.
7 They shall eagerly utter the memory of Your abundant goodness
And will shout joyfully of Your righteousness.”  Psalm 145:3-7.

Today’s devotion comes from Mark 7:24-30.

“Jesus got up and went away from there to the region of Tyre.  And when He had entered a house, He wanted no one to know of it;  yet He could not escape notice.  But after hearing of Him, a woman whose little daughter had an unclean spirit immediately came and fell at His feet.  Now the woman was a Gentile, of the Syrophoenician race.  And she kept asking Him to cast the demon out of her daughter.  And He was saying to her, “Let the children be satisfied first, for it is not good to take the children’s bread and throw it to the dogs.”  But she answered and *said to Him, “Yes, Lord, but even the dogs under the table feed on the children’s crumbs.”  And He said to her, “Because of this answer go;  the demon has gone out of your daughter.”  And going back to her home, she found the child lying on the bed, the demon having left.”  Mark 7:24-30.


The Gentile, Syrophoenician woman, kept asking Jesus to cast the demon out of her daughter.  But, Jesus was saying to her, “Let the children be satisfied first, for it is not good to take the children’s bread and throw it to the dogs.”

Many people would have received Jesus’ statement as an insult or at least a brush-off and would be offended and give up.

But she showed humility, patience, and persistence in her answer and said to Him, “Yes, Lord, but even the dogs under the table feed on the children’s crumbs.”

“And He said to her, “Because of this answer go;  the demon has gone out of your daughter.”

Particularly because Jesus said that the reason why He healed her daughter was her answer, we should meditate on some of what the Scriptures state about these qualities.

First, she was humble.

“…  “But to this one I will look,
To him who is humble and contrite of spirit, and who trembles at My word.”  Isaiah 66:2.

Second, she was patient.

“I waited patiently for the LORD;
And He inclined to me and heard my cry.”  Psalm 40:1.

Third, she was persistent.

“Now He was telling them a parable to show that at all times they ought to pray and not to lose heart, saying, “In a certain city there was a judge who did not fear God and did not respect man.  There was a widow in that city, and she kept coming to him, saying, ‘Give me legal protection from my opponent.’  For a while he was unwilling;  but afterward he said to himself, ‘Even though I do not fear God nor respect man, yet because this widow bothers me, I will give her legal protection, otherwise by continually coming she will wear me out.’”  Luke 18:1-4.

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