Derelict Preachers and Wicked Politicians (Hosea 5; Hosea 6)
From The Heart of A Shepherd » Christian Contemporary Music
by PastorTravisDSmith
5M ago
Scripture reading – Hosea 5; Hosea 6; Hosea 7 This is the first of two Bible studies for today. Click on this link to translate this Bible study into Russian, Hebrew, Chinese, Spanish, German, Portuguese, or French. Hosea 5 – The Court is in Session Our spiritual courtroom continues in Hosea 5, and the priests, king, and the people are judged guilty as charged (Hosea 5:1). God declared, “I know Ephraim, and Israel is not hid from me: For now, O Ephraim, thou committest whoredom, and Israel is defiled” (Hosea 5:3).  (Remember that Ephraim was the largest and most influential tribe of the ..read more
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Those Who Minister Before the LORD in Music (1 Chronicles 23-25)
From The Heart of A Shepherd » Christian Contemporary Music
by PastorTravisDSmith
9M ago
Scripture Reading – 1 Chronicles 23-25 The opening verses of 1 Chronicles 23 remind us that David is an old man and is setting both his house and kingdom in order. David has reigned 40 years (1 Chronicles 26:31) and has “made Solomon his son king over Israel” (23:1). Today’s Scripture reading registers the king’s charge to organize the Levite families who will lead the worship of the LORD.  I invite you to especially notice the prominence of music, musicians, and song in today’s Scripture reading. 1 Chronicles 23 – A Census of the Tribe of Levi The census of Levi found there were 38,000 h ..read more
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CONGREGATIONAL SINGING, if not dead, is dying. 
From The Heart of A Shepherd » Christian Contemporary Music
by PastorTravisDSmith
9M ago
Dear Heart of a Shepherd Follower, Across America are churches that were once bastions of Bible preaching, but have become mere shadows of their past. Churches where great songs and hymns of the Christian faith once resonated, are host to congregations mumbling their way through “7-11 choruses” (seven word choruses repeated eleven times). Usually led by a “Vocal Team” and backed by a band pounding out a deafening beat, CONGREGATIONAL SINGING, if not dead, is dying. How did we get here? I am writing to commend to you an excellent article on Hymnody authored by Dr. Theodore Martens. Dr. Mar ..read more
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Gnosticism and Four Proofs of Genuine Faith and Salvation (1 John 1; 1 John 2)
From The Heart of A Shepherd » Christian Contemporary Music
by PastorTravisDSmith
9M ago
Click on this link for translations of today’s devotion. Scripture reading – 1 John 1; 1 John 2 Today’s Scripture reading is 1 John 2, but I am taking liberty to review 1 John 1 and give some background to this wonderful letter to believers of the latter years of the 1st century. Lord willing, we will consider 1 John 2 in the future. Introduction Scholars suppose The First Epistle of John was written near the close of the first century between A.D. 85-90. The apostle John was an elderly man, and in the last years of his remarkable life. While he failed to identify himself by name, the beauty a ..read more
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Take Time to Be Holy
From The Heart of A Shepherd » Christian Contemporary Music
by PastorTravisDSmith
9M ago
Thursday, November 9, 2017 Daily reading assignment – Ecclesiastes 5-6 When I was young and with a lifetime ahead of me, reading the Book of Ecclesiastes was a chore.   I confess; I read its verses, but did not relish its truths.  The ponderings of Solomon, his youth spent and his heart laden with the weight of sin, was depressing. Solomon’s counsel in his old age stands out in sad contrast to the proverbs of wisdom he taught his sons when they were young.  Rather than exhortations of wisdom and cautions to walk in the way of the LORD, Ecclesiastes calls to mind the counsel ..read more
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What Does God Require? Cool or Holy Ministers? (Ezekiel 41; Ezekiel 42)
From The Heart of A Shepherd » Christian Contemporary Music
by PastorTravisDSmith
9M ago
Scripture reading – Ezekiel 41; Ezekiel 42 Our consideration of the new Temple of the Millennial Kingdom continues with a description of the outer and inner sanctuaries of the Temple (Ezekiel 41-42). Rather than belabor the dimensional details of the Temple (height, length, breadth), I will highlight the various aspects of the Temple grounds that includes the walls, doors, courtyards, buildings, and the Temple itself. The Outer Sanctuary of the Millennial Temple (40:48-41:26) The heavenly messenger led Ezekiel up the steps and through the portico of the Temple (40:48-49), and into the outer sa ..read more
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“The end never justifies the means.”
From The Heart of A Shepherd » Christian Contemporary Music
by PastorTravisDSmith
9M ago
Tuesday, August 22, 2017 Daily reading assignment – 1 Chronicles 10-14 I stated in an earlier commentary that the first nine chapters of 1 Chronicles was largely devoted to the genealogical record of Israel and Judah.  1 Chronicles 9 concluded with a brief summary of the lineage of king Saul and his sons (9:35-44). We noted the reign and death of Saul, Israel’s first king in an earlier commentary in 1 Samuel 31:1-10.  1 Chronicles 10 gives us another perspective of Israel’s defeat at the hands of the Philistines and the tragic deaths of Saul and his sons on the battlefield (10:1-6) a ..read more
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Know That a Prophet Hath Been Among You (Ezekiel 33:33)
From The Heart of A Shepherd » Christian Contemporary Music
by PastorTravisDSmith
9M ago
After enjoying a vacation in the Smoky Mountains, I look forward to being back in Hillsdale’s pulpit this Sunday.  We will return to our verse-by-verse study of the Gospel of John, taking up our study with the closing verses of John 9 and introducing one of the most beautiful and beloved passages of the Gospels… the Parable of the Good Shepherd (John 10:1-18). Knowing the shepherd is a metaphor for a spiritual leader and the sheep is a metaphor for God’s people throughout the scriptures, I invested several hours focusing on the role of the shepherd and his relationship with the sheep ..read more
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Worship Music and the Character of Worship Leaders (1 Chronicles 25)
From The Heart of A Shepherd » Christian Contemporary Music
by PastorTravisDSmith
9M ago
Scripture reading – 1 Chronicles 25   Twenty-four Orders of Levite Musicians Continuing the census and organization of the men of the tribe of Levi that began in 1 Chronicles 23, “David and the captains of the host” arranged the musicians who would minister in the worship of the Temple. David was intimately involved in the Tabernacle’s music and the music ministry’s organization in the Temple. As both a poet and musician, the king understood music’s important role in worshipping the LORD. Three primary Levitical families are identified (1 Chronicles 25:1): “the sons of Asaph (1 Chronicl ..read more
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A Primer in Congregational Worship and Praise (Psalm 33; Psalm 36)
From The Heart of A Shepherd » Christian Contemporary Music
by PastorTravisDSmith
9M ago
Scripture reading – Psalm 33; Psalm 36 Click on this link to read translations of this Bible study in German, Spanish, Russian, Arabic, Chinese, Portuguese, or French. Our Scripture reading is from two psalms, Psalm 33 and 36. Today’s devotion is taken from Psalm 33. As in earlier Bible studies, this author’s definitions and amplified word meanings appear in brackets. Worship in the 21st century is far from the reverential worship you would have known and experienced in the courtyard of the Tabernacle or at the Temple in Solomon’s day. Like all psalms, the LORD is the central focus of Psalm 3 ..read more
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