“Be on your guard against covetousness in any shape or form. For a man’s real life in no way depends upon the number of his possessions.” Luke 12:15, Phillips.

The curse which Balaam had not been permitted to pronounce against God’s people, he finally succeeded in bringing upon them by seducing them into sin.23The Great Controversy, 529, 530.

Balaam witnessed the success of his diabolical scheme. He saw the curse of God visited upon His people, and thousands falling under His judgments; but the divine justice that punished sin in Israel did not permit the tempters to escape. In the war of Israel against the Midianites, Balaam was slain….

The fate of Balaam was similar to that of Judas, and their characters bear a marked resemblance to each other. Both these men tried to unite the service of God and mammon, and met with signal failure. Balaam acknowledged the true God, and professed to serve Him; Judas believed in Jesus as the Messiah, and united with His followers. But Balaam hoped to make the service of Jehovah the steppingstone to the acquirement of riches and worldly honor; and failing in this he stumbled and fell and was broken. Judas expected by his connection with Christ to secure wealth and promotion in that worldly kingdom which, as he believed, the Messiah was about to set up. The failure of his hopes drove him to apostasy and ruin. Both Balaam and Judas had received great light and enjoyed special privileges, but a single cherished sin poisoned the entire character and caused their destruction….

One cherished sin will, little by little, debase the character, bringing all its nobler powers into subjection to the evil desire. The removal of one safeguard from the conscience, the indulgence of one evil habit, one neglect of the high claims of duty, breaks down the defenses of the soul and opens the way for Satan to come in and lead us astray. The only safe course is to let our prayers go forth daily from a sincere heart, as did David, “Hold up my goings in thy paths, that my footsteps slip not” (Psalm 17:5).
Conflict and Courage p. 114
Prayer Requests
—–my son, Jeffrey, had a scope done but they didn’t see any signs of acid reflux. So they did a CT scan. Hopefully they will be able to tell what the knot is on his neck. He is scared, I am to – I told him I am keeping him covered in prayer and would ask others to as well.
Stephanie goes to the doctor tomorrow. She is due a week from tomorrow. Thanks for the prayers. Jami
——Please pray for wisdom for E who is having issues with her daughter. L
—–My brother, Larry, was diagnosed with cancer of the bladder in April. It was thought that it was at a low stage. They later found signs of it in a lung and near the esophagus. He was to have 6 treatments of chemo and 6 1/2 weeks of radiation. One chemo treatment left and he has gotten very sick. Possible sepsis and pneumonia. They are flying him to a larger hospital, Please pray for him and his family. Shirley
——Poor little Ella is fighting for her life against her cancer! Let’s just all take a moment and say a prayer for Ella and all the other children struck with horrible illnesses. Terri

Dear Friends,
One day, I heard two people (one of whom worked as a ticket taker at a local concert hall) talking about all of the screaming teenage girls at a concert by a group popular with the young people. I well remember how I used to have my little crushes on various singing stars of the 50’s.

Of course, I grew out of those schoolgirl crushes, but I once knew a woman never did. Her whole focus was on Elvis Presley. The walls in her office were covered with photographs of him. She loved to talk about this singer whose career ended abruptly from an overdose of sleeping pills. One time an Elvis impersonator was entertaining in the building where she worked. She made quite a spectacle of herself screaming like a schoolgirl and bowing to him. After the performance, she had this rather poor representation of the former rock star come to her office and showed him all of her memorabilia. One year she even went so far as to burn candles and offer food before a large photo of Elvis on the anniversary of his death. It was quite amazing how she literally worshiped a dead man.

Praise God! We do not worship a dead man! Our Dear Saviour is alive! “Wherefore he is able also to save [us] to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for [us].” Heb 7:25 Think of it! The very same Jesus, Who left the throne of glory, walked this earth as a man, was wounded for our transgressions and bruised for our iniquities, Who died for our sins that we might be saved is even now before God, the Father, interceding in our behalf. Wonderful Saviour!

Yet how seldom is our focus on Him Who gave Himself a ransom for us. How rarely do we speak of His goodness. God’s Holy Word is filled with His love, yet how often we read, listen to, or watch that which edifies not. Our sins are forgiven for His name’s sake, yet we pass our years focusing on what the world has to offer. How it must amaze the unfallen beings of the universe that we think more of the mundane things of this world than we do of the King of Glory.

How our Loving Redeemer’s Great Heart of Love must break when we ignore Him or at best give Him only “lip service.” With tears in His voice He says to us as He said to the Pharisees of old, “Ye hypocrites, well did Esaias prophesy of you, saying, This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoureth me with their lips, but their heart is far from me. But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.” Matt 15:7-9

Yet, how much joy we give Him when our focus is upon Him and His great love for us. How we please Him when we speak of His blessings. Indeed He makes a record of our words and thoughts. “Then they that feared the LORD spake often one to another: and the LORD hearkened, and heard it, and a book of remembrance was written before him for them that feared the LORD, and that thought upon his name. And they shall be mine, saith the LORD of hosts, in that day when I make up my jewels, and I will spare them, as a man spareth his own son that serveth him. Then shall ye return, and discern between the righteous and the wicked, between him that serveth God and him that serveth him not.” Mal 3:16-18

Let us focus totally upon our Great Redeemer. Let our sweetest thoughts be of Him and his marvelous grace. Let us daily pray as did David, “Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O LORD, my strength, and my redeemer.” Ps 19:14


Two of a Kind
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