Category Archives: Tongue / Gossip / Slander

In My Trouble I Cried To The LORD

Not all enemies come after us with swords. More often than not, at least today, they come after us with lies and deceit. These tools still lead to conflict. Whether we seek help from enemies of the sword or seemingly more mild attacks, we can seek the LORD in any case. He can deliver us and lead us into peace.

Psalm 120

Prayer for Deliverance from the Treacherous.

A Song of Ascents.

     1In my trouble I cried to the LORD,
And He answered me.

      2Deliver my soul, O LORD, from lying lips,
From a deceitful tongue.

      3What shall be given to you, and what more shall be done to you,
You deceitful tongue?

      4Sharp arrows of the warrior,
With the burning coals of the broom tree.

      5Woe is me, for I sojourn in Meshech,
For I dwell among the tents of Kedar!

      6Too long has my soul had its dwelling
With those who hate peace.

      7I am for peace, but when I speak,
They are for war.

Pray for His help. Pray for His protection. Seek Him and His truth by studying His written word in the Bible. Live according to His ways. and trust in Him to answer.

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Do you know for sure if you will go to heaven or hell when you die? Are you experiencing in your life the peace and joy of a personal relationship with our Creator and Father? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

Put On The New Self; Do Not Remain The Same

When we become disciples of Christ, we are not to remain the same as we were before and simply “add Jesus” on top of everything else we were already doing. There are behaviors and thought patterns which we must die to and others we must pursue. With God’s help, we become more like Him and less like our old selves… but we have to choose to pursue righteousness and reject sinfulness. He will not simply force it on us because we said His name once. This transformation is typically a journey, not typically like turning on a light switch. It is like cooking in a crock pot rather than a microwave. It takes longer, but it tastes so much better when it is done.

Colossians 3:1-17

Put On the New Self

      1Therefore if you have been raised up with Christ, keep seeking the things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. 2Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth. 3For you have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God. 4When Christ, who is our life, is revealed, then you also will be revealed with Him in glory.

      5Therefore consider the members of your earthly body as dead to immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and greed, which amounts to idolatry.6For it is because of these things that the wrath of God will come upon the sons of disobedience, 7and in them you also once walked, when you were living in them. 8But now you also, put them all aside: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and abusive speech from your mouth. 9Do not lie to one another, since you laid aside the old self with its evil practices, 10and have put on the new self who is being renewed to a true knowledge according to the image of the One who created him— 11a renewal in which there is no distinction between Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave and freeman, but Christ is all, and in all.

      12So, as those who have been chosen of God, holy and beloved, put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience;13bearing with one another, and forgiving each other, whoever has a complaint against anyone; just as the Lord forgave you, so also should you.14Beyond all these things put on love, which is the perfect bond of unity. 15Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body; and be thankful. 16Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God. 17Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father.

Take time to reflect on your life. Ask the Spirit to give you insight specific to you. Are you living according to the description above? If not, ask forgiveness from God and ask God for help. Renew you commitment to live for Him and seek repentance… seek to change yourself to be more like our Lord.

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Do you know for sure if you will go to heaven or hell when you die? Are you experiencing in your life the peace and joy of a personal relationship with our Creator and Father? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

When The Righteous Increase, The People Rejoice

Let us pray for an increase of righteous, godly people in our churches, communities, states, nation, and across the world. Let us seek righteousness in God’s word and through relationship with Him. Do not pursue the deceptions of worldly teaching on what is righteous and what is wicked for Satan revels in deception as those that claim God all the while rebel against His ways.

Proverbs 29

Warnings and Instructions

       1A man who hardens his neck after much reproof
Will suddenly be broken beyond remedy.

      2When the righteous increase, the people rejoice,
But when a wicked man rules, people groan.

      3A man who loves wisdom makes his father glad,
But he who keeps company with harlots wastes his wealth.

      4The king gives stability to the land by justice,
But a man who takes bribes overthrows it.

      5A man who flatters his neighbor
Is spreading a net for his steps.

      6By transgression an evil man is ensnared,
But the righteous sings and rejoices.

      7The righteous is concerned for the rights of the poor,
The wicked does not understand such concern.

      8Scorners set a city aflame,
But wise men turn away anger.

      9When a wise man has a controversy with a foolish man,
The foolish man either rages or laughs, and there is no rest.

      10Men of bloodshed hate the blameless,
But the upright are concerned for his life.

      11A fool always loses his temper,
But a wise man holds it back.

      12If a ruler pays attention to falsehood,
All his ministers become wicked.

      13The poor man and the oppressor have this in common:
The LORD gives light to the eyes of both.

      14If a king judges the poor with truth,
His throne will be established forever.

      15The rod and reproof give wisdom,
But a child who gets his own way brings shame to his mother.

      16When the wicked increase, transgression increases;
But the righteous will see their fall.

      17Correct your son, and he will give you comfort;
He will also delight your soul.

      18Where there is no vision, the people are unrestrained,
But happy is he who keeps the law.

      19A slave will not be instructed by words alone;
For though he understands, there will be no response.

      20Do you see a man who is hasty in his words?
There is more hope for a fool than for him.

      21He who pampers his slave from childhood
Will in the end find him to be a son.

      22An angry man stirs up strife,
And a hot-tempered man abounds in transgression.

      23A man’s pride will bring him low,
But a humble spirit will obtain honor.

      24He who is a partner with a thief hates his own life;
He hears the oath but tells nothing.

      25The fear of man brings a snare,
But he who trusts in the LORD will be exalted.

      26Many seek the ruler’s favor,
But justice for man comes from the LORD.

      27An unjust man is abominable to the righteous,
And he who is upright in the way is abominable to the wicked.

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Do you know for sure if you will go to heaven or hell when you die? Are you experiencing in your life the peace and joy of a personal relationship with our Creator and Father? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

Do Not Answer A Fool According To His Folly

Wisdom for any age in which we deal with other people…

Proverbs 26

Similitudes, Instructions

     1Like snow in summer and like rain in harvest,
So honor is not fitting for a fool.

      2Like a sparrow in its flitting, like a swallow in its flying,
So a curse without cause does not alight.

      3A whip is for the horse, a bridle for the donkey,
And a rod for the back of fools.

      4Do not answer a fool according to his folly,
Or you will also be like him.

      5Answer a fool as his folly deserves,
That he not be wise in his own eyes.

      6He cuts off his own feet and drinks violence
Who sends a message by the hand of a fool.

      7Like the legs which are useless to the lame,
So is a proverb in the mouth of fools.

      8Like one who binds a stone in a sling,
So is he who gives honor to a fool.

      9Like a thorn which falls into the hand of a drunkard,
So is a proverb in the mouth of fools.

      10Like an archer who wounds everyone,
So is he who hires a fool or who hires those who pass by.

      11Like a dog that returns to its vomit
Is a fool who repeats his folly.

      12Do you see a man wise in his own eyes?
There is more hope for a fool than for him.

      13The sluggard says, “There is a lion in the road!
A lion is in the open square!”

      14As the door turns on its hinges,
So does the sluggard on his bed.

      15The sluggard buries his hand in the dish;
He is weary of bringing it to his mouth again.

      16The sluggard is wiser in his own eyes
Than seven men who can give a discreet answer.

      17Like one who takes a dog by the ears
Is he who passes by and meddles with strife not belonging to him.

      18Like a madman who throws
Firebrands, arrows and death,

      19So is the man who deceives his neighbor,
And says, “Was I not joking?”

      20For lack of wood the fire goes out,
And where there is no whisperer, contention quiets down.

      21Like charcoal to hot embers and wood to fire,
So is a contentious man to kindle strife.

      22The words of a whisperer are like dainty morsels,
And they go down into the innermost parts of the body.

      23Like an earthen vessel overlaid with silver dross
Are burning lips and a wicked heart.

      24He who hates disguises it with his lips,
But he lays up deceit in his heart.

      25When he speaks graciously, do not believe him,
For there are seven abominations in his heart.

      26Though his hatred covers itself with guile,
His wickedness will be revealed before the assembly.

      27He who digs a pit will fall into it,
And he who rolls a stone, it will come back on him.

      28A lying tongue hates those it crushes,
And a flattering mouth works ruin.

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Do you know for sure if you will go to heaven or hell when you die? Are you experiencing in your life the peace and joy of a personal relationship with our Creator and Father? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

I Will Sing of Lovingkindness and Justice

All who take this to heart and action it in their lives will draw near to the Lord and find both peace and joy.

Psalm 101

The Psalmist’s Profession of Uprightness.

A Psalm of David.

      1I will sing of lovingkindness and justice,
To You, O LORD, I will sing praises.

      2I will give heed to the blameless way.
When will You come to me?
I will walk within my house in the integrity of my heart.

      3I will set no worthless thing before my eyes;
I hate the work of those who fall away;
It shall not fasten its grip on me.

      4A perverse heart shall depart from me;
I will know no evil.

      5Whoever secretly slanders his neighbor, him I will destroy;
No one who has a haughty look and an arrogant heart will I endure.

      6My eyes shall be upon the faithful of the land, that they may dwell with me;
He who walks in a blameless way is the one who will minister to me.

      7He who practices deceit shall not dwell within my house;
He who speaks falsehood shall not maintain his position before me.

      8Every morning I will destroy all the wicked of the land,
So as to cut off from the city of the LORD all those who do iniquity.

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Do you know for sure if you will go to heaven or hell when you die? Are you experiencing in your life the peace and joy of a personal relationship with our Creator and Father? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

Like An Ornament Of Fine Gold, So Is A Wise Reprover To A Listening Ear

Ask the Spirit to enlighten the meaning and relevance of scripture to you each time you sit to read and reflect on scripture. He is counselor and guide. All scripture is still relevant and worthy for use in teaching and rebuking.

Proverbs 25

Similitudes, Instructions

      1These also are proverbs of Solomon which the men of Hezekiah, king of Judah, transcribed.

      2It is the glory of God to conceal a matter,
But the glory of kings is to search out a matter.

      3As the heavens for height and the earth for depth,
So the heart of kings is unsearchable.

      4Take away the dross from the silver,
And there comes out a vessel for the smith;

      5Take away the wicked before the king,
And his throne will be established in righteousness.

      6Do not claim honor in the presence of the king,
And do not stand in the place of great men;

      7For it is better that it be said to you, “Come up here,”
Than for you to be placed lower in the presence of the prince,
Whom your eyes have seen.

      8Do not go out hastily to argue your case;
Otherwise, what will you do in the end,
When your neighbor humiliates you?

      9Argue your case with your neighbor,
And do not reveal the secret of another,

      10Or he who hears it will reproach you,
And the evil report about you will not pass away.

      11Like apples of gold in settings of silver
Is a word spoken in right circumstances.

      12Like an earring of gold and an ornament of fine gold
Is a wise reprover to a listening ear.

      13Like the cold of snow in the time of harvest
Is a faithful messenger to those who send him,
For he refreshes the soul of his masters.

      14Like clouds and wind without rain
Is a man who boasts of his gifts falsely.

      15By forbearance a ruler may be persuaded,
And a soft tongue breaks the bone.

      16Have you found honey? Eat only what you need,
That you not have it in excess and vomit it.

      17Let your foot rarely be in your neighbor’s house,
Or he will become weary of you and hate you.

      18Like a club and a sword and a sharp arrow
Is a man who bears false witness against his neighbor.

      19Like a bad tooth and an unsteady foot
Is confidence in a faithless man in time of trouble.

      20Like one who takes off a garment on a cold day, or like vinegar on soda,
Is he who sings songs to a troubled heart.

      21If your enemy is hungry, give him food to eat;
And if he is thirsty, give him water to drink;

      22For you will heap burning coals on his head,
And the LORD will reward you.

      23The north wind brings forth rain,
And a backbiting tongue, an angry countenance.

      24It is better to live in a corner of the roof
Than in a house shared with a contentious woman.

      25Like cold water to a weary soul,
So is good news from a distant land.

      26Like a trampled spring and a polluted well
Is a righteous man who gives way before the wicked.

      27It is not good to eat much honey,
Nor is it glory to search out one’s own glory.

      28Like a city that is broken into and without walls
Is a man who has no control over his spirit.

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Do you know for sure if you will go to heaven or hell when you die? Are you experiencing in your life the peace and joy of a personal relationship with our Creator and Father? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

To Do Righteousness And Justice Is Desired By The Lord More Than Sacrifice

Proverbs is so often densely packed with gems of immeasurable value that I can’t possibly hope to fully unpack them in a format such as this. But they are treasures we should go hunting for through Proverbs over and over again. I encourage each of us to take time to pray for the Spirit to guide us and then dwell on each verse.

Proverbs 21

On Life and Conduct

      1The king’s heart is like channels of water in the hand of the LORD;
He turns it wherever He wishes.

      2Every man’s way is right in his own eyes,
But the LORD weighs the hearts.

      3To do righteousness and justice
Is desired by the LORD more than sacrifice.

      4Haughty eyes and a proud heart,
The lamp of the wicked, is sin.

      5The plans of the diligent lead surely to advantage,
But everyone who is hasty comes surely to poverty.

      6The acquisition of treasures by a lying tongue
Is a fleeting vapor, the pursuit of death.

      7The violence of the wicked will drag them away,
Because they refuse to act with justice.

      8The way of a guilty man is crooked,
But as for the pure, his conduct is upright.

      9It is better to live in a corner of a roof
Than in a house shared with a contentious woman.

      10The soul of the wicked desires evil;
His neighbor finds no favor in his eyes.

      11When the scoffer is punished, the naive becomes wise;
But when the wise is instructed, he receives knowledge.

      12The righteous one considers the house of the wicked,
Turning the wicked to ruin.

      13He who shuts his ear to the cry of the poor
Will also cry himself and not be answered.

      14A gift in secret subdues anger,
And a bribe in the bosom, strong wrath.

      15The exercise of justice is joy for the righteous,
But is terror to the workers of iniquity.

      16A man who wanders from the way of understanding
Will rest in the assembly of the dead.

      17He who loves pleasure will become a poor man;
He who loves wine and oil will not become rich.

      18The wicked is a ransom for the righteous,
And the treacherous is in the place of the upright.

      19It is better to live in a desert land
Than with a contentious and vexing woman.

      20There is precious treasure and oil in the dwelling of the wise,
But a foolish man swallows it up.

      21He who pursues righteousness and loyalty
Finds life, righteousness and honor.

      22A wise man scales the city of the mighty
And brings down the stronghold in which they trust.

      23He who guards his mouth and his tongue,
Guards his soul from troubles.

      24“Proud,” “Haughty,” “Scoffer,” are his names,
Who acts with insolent pride.

      25The desire of the sluggard puts him to death,
For his hands refuse to work;

      26All day long he is craving,
While the righteous gives and does not hold back.

      27The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination,
How much more when he brings it with evil intent!

      28A false witness will perish,
But the man who listens to the truth will speak forever.

      29A wicked man displays a bold face,
But as for the upright, he makes his way sure.

      30There is no wisdom and no understanding
And no counsel against the LORD.

      31The horse is prepared for the day of battle,
But victory belongs to the LORD.

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Have you submitted your life to Jesus Christ? Are you living today filled with the peace and joy of truly knowing and following Jesus Christ? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

Jehovah Speaks On Life and Conduct

Our Father loves us dearly. He has provided us with His word to guide us, His Spirit to fill us and help us, and the death of His son to make a way to forgive us. Let us never take that for granted, being complacent in our own way of living according to the ways of the world. The world if sinful and not righteous. Let us take His fatherly advice and change how we are living to be more like He instructs for us.

Proverbs 19

On Life and Conduct

1Better is a poor man who walks in his integrity
Than he who is perverse in speech and is a fool.

      2Also it is not good for a person to be without knowledge,
And he who hurries his footsteps errs.

      3The foolishness of man ruins his way,
And his heart rages against the LORD.

      4Wealth adds many friends,
But a poor man is separated from his friend.

      5A false witness will not go unpunished,
And he who tells lies will not escape.

      6Many will seek the favor of a generous man,
And every man is a friend to him who gives gifts.

      7All the brothers of a poor man hate him;
How much more do his friends abandon him!
He pursues them with words, but they are gone.

      8He who gets wisdom loves his own soul;
He who keeps understanding will find good.

      9A false witness will not go unpunished,
And he who tells lies will perish.

      10Luxury is not fitting for a fool;
Much less for a slave to rule over princes.

      11A man’s discretion makes him slow to anger,
And it is his glory to overlook a transgression.

      12The king’s wrath is like the roaring of a lion,
But his favor is like dew on the grass.

      13A foolish son is destruction to his father,
And the contentions of a wife are a constant dripping.

      14House and wealth are an inheritance from fathers,
But a prudent wife is from the LORD.

      15Laziness casts into a deep sleep,
And an idle man will suffer hunger.

      16He who keeps the commandment keeps his soul,
But he who is careless of conduct will die.

      17One who is gracious to a poor man lends to the LORD,
And He will repay him for his good deed.

      18Discipline your son while there is hope,
And do not desire his death.

      19A man of great anger will bear the penalty,
For if you rescue him, you will only have to do it again.

      20Listen to counsel and accept discipline,
That you may be wise the rest of your days.

      21Many plans are in a man’s heart,
But the counsel of the LORD will stand.

      22What is desirable in a man is his kindness,
And it is better to be a poor man than a liar.

      23The fear of the LORD leads to life,
So that one may sleep satisfied, untouched by evil.

      24The sluggard buries his hand in the dish,
But will not even bring it back to his mouth.

      25Strike a scoffer and the naive may become shrewd,
But reprove one who has understanding and he will gain knowledge.

      26He who assaults his father and drives his mother away
Is a shameful and disgraceful son.

      27Cease listening, my son, to discipline,
And you will stray from the words of knowledge.

      28A rascally witness makes a mockery of justice,
And the mouth of the wicked spreads iniquity.

      29Judgments are prepared for scoffers,
And blows for the back of fools.

Take time and dwell on each verse. Which one or two strike you the most as relevant in your life. Pray the Lord helps you to deal with this area of your life and continue your transformation to be more like Him!

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Have you submitted your life to Jesus Christ? Are you living today filled with the peace and joy of truly knowing and following Jesus Christ? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

Do Not Choose To Complain When God Calls You To Repent

Korah lead a rebellion in the beginning of Numbers 16. The Lord punished him and his family and those who also led the rebellion. They were swallowed up by the earth in a sign that could only be of the Lord. It was public and visible. One would assume then that the rest of the people who had been spared would be humble and repent before the Lord for their rebellion against Him. They did not. Instead they grumbled and complained, again jealous and blaming Moses and Aaron and never looking inward to judge the hardness of their own hearts in a way that could lead to repentance.

While it seems quite amazing, if you think about it in the lives of people around you every day, even those who say they believe and follow Jesus, you will see it is quite common. People have a tendency to excuse or overlook their sin and rebellion to God and blame others when things do not work out how they like. They do not internalize this issue of rebellion as originating with them… as their fault.

What an amazing response by Moses and Aaron… rather than just stand there and let God wipe out the rebellious people, they spring to action and make an intercessory offering and prayer on behalf of the sinful people. Though the people did not repent, the intercessory prayers of the righteous were enough for God to spare the people further destruction. What a great example of how we as God’s people should respond to those who struggle in their relationship with the Lord. Let us not be vengeful, but rather gracious in seeking to pray on their behalf before the Lord.

Numbers 16:41-50

Murmuring and Plague

     41But on the next day all the congregation of the sons of Israel grumbled against Moses and Aaron, saying, “You are the ones who have caused the death of the LORD’S people.” 42It came about, however, when the congregation had assembled against Moses and Aaron, that they turned toward the tent of meeting, and behold, the cloud covered it and the glory of the LORD appeared. 43Then Moses and Aaron came to the front of the tent of meeting, 44and the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, 45“Get away from among this congregation, that I may consume them instantly.” Then they fell on their faces. 46Moses said to Aaron, “Take your censer and put in it fire from the altar, and lay incense on it; then bring it quickly to the congregation and make atonement for them, for wrath has gone forth from the LORD, the plague has begun!” 47Then Aaron took it as Moses had spoken, and ran into the midst of the assembly, for behold, the plague had begun among the people. So he put on the incense and made atonement for the people. 48He took his stand between the dead and the living, so that the plague was checked. 49But those who died by the plague were 14,700, besides those who died on account of Korah. 50Then Aaron returned to Moses at the doorway of the tent of meeting, for the plague had been checked.

When God calls you to repent, do not choose to complain instead. Take care not to be like those who sin and then grumble, always blaming the righteous for what goes wrong and never internalizing your own sin and relationship with the Lord.

Look also for the opportunity to pray for others, even those who would do you harm or say bad things to and about you. What a way to be a light to the world!

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Have you submitted your life to Jesus Christ? Are you living today filled with the peace and joy of truly knowing and following Jesus Christ? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

A Fool Does Not Delight In Understanding

I like to continually cycle through Proverbs at a higher frequency than I cycle through the whole of the Bible. It is filled with so much practical advice. Pray the Spirit would enlighten you as to what He wants to say to you and enter in with patience and without hurry. Above all, believe the wisdom is still relevant and come with humility looking for areas in which the Lord is directing you to change.

Sometimes gaining insight and understanding is difficult for us to take as it shows us our mistakes and leads us to change, but it is a fool who does not delight in understanding. The wise seek to understand and become wiser still. Gaining wisdom is necessary if we are to step out of our own folly.

Proverbs 18

Contrast the Upright and the Wicked

1He who separates himself seeks his own desire,
He quarrels against all sound wisdom.

      2A fool does not delight in understanding,
But only in revealing his own mind.

3When a wicked man comes, contempt also comes,
And with dishonor comes scorn.

4The words of a man’s mouth are deep waters;
The fountain of wisdom is a bubbling brook.

5To show partiality to the wicked is not good,
Nor to thrust aside the righteous in judgment.

6A fool’s lips bring strife,
And his mouth calls for blows.

7A fool’s mouth is his ruin,
And his lips are the snare of his soul.

8The words of a whisperer are like dainty morsels,
And they go down into the innermost parts of the body.

9He also who is slack in his work
Is brother to him who destroys.

10The name of the LORD is a strong tower;
The righteous runs into it and is safe.

11A rich man’s wealth is his strong city,
And like a high wall in his own imagination.

12Before destruction the heart of man is haughty,
But humility goes before honor.

13He who gives an answer before he hears,
It is folly and shame to him.

14The spirit of a man can endure his sickness,
But as for a broken spirit who can bear it?

15The mind of the prudent acquires knowledge,
And the ear of the wise seeks knowledge.

16A man’s gift makes room for him
And brings him before great men.

17The first to plead his case seems right,
Until another comes and examines him.

18The cast lot puts an end to strife
And decides between the mighty ones.

19A brother offended is harder to be won than a strong city,
And contentions are like the bars of a citadel.

20With the fruit of a man’s mouth his stomach will be satisfied;
He will be satisfied with the product of his lips.

21Death and life are in the power of the tongue,
And those who love it will eat its fruit.

22He who finds a wife finds a good thing
And obtains favor from the LORD.

23The poor man utters supplications,
But the rich man answers roughly.

24A man of too many friends comes to ruin,
But there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.

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Have you submitted your life to Jesus Christ? Are you living today filled with the peace and joy of truly knowing and following Jesus Christ? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.