Devotionals 2020


“And she will have a son, and you are to name him Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.””

Matthew 1:21 NLT

Mary gave birth to her son Jesus who was the Son of God who was also the Son of Man. His destiny was to save all mankind, all humans, all ‘Adam’. Adam is Hebrew for human, or ‘man’. Jesus often identified Himself as the Son of Man which principally meant ‘human’ but which was also reference to the Son of Man who was given authority over all mankind by the ‘Ancient of Days’ in Daniel’s vision (Daniel 7:13). Jesus referred to Himself this way to say that He was human like other people but to also indicate that He was to be the One that would save mankind and be honoured forever. Jesus was this fully God and fully human. Some say that Jesus was actually fully human, is fully human, and that He remains fully human although He is still God. Whatever the definition Jesus did come to this world to save us and did this successfully. He is the One foretold in Genesis 3:15 who was to strike the serpent’s head, destroying the evil one’s hold on mankind. The serpent is synonymous with the hold that sin has on us. Prior to Jesus, sin trapped us in death forever, this is because the wages of sin is death. But Jesus dying willingly for us released the hold, the destiny, of all who sin, that is, humans, enabling us to choose life. Jesus supplied the ability for humans to choose life. The destruction of the hold of sin over us, the crushing of the serpent’s head, was what allows us to choose life. Don’t forget that life and death are the two states of being talked about in the Bible. Either we are alive or dead. Although these words can refer to conditions of mind and the state of the body ultimately life and death means existence or non-existence. God wants us to choose life and promises that life will be awesome. “He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. All these things are gone forever.”” Revelation 21:4 NLT. 


“For they don’t understand God’s way of making people right with himself. Refusing to accept God’s way, they cling to their own way of getting right with God by trying to keep the law. For Christ has already accomplished the purpose for which the law was given. As a result, all who believe in him are made right with God.

If you openly declare that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is by believing in your heart that you are made right with God, and it is by openly declaring your faith that you are saved.

Jew and Gentile are the same in this respect. They have the same Lord, who gives generously to all who call on him. For “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.””

Romans 10:3-4, 9-10, 12-13 NLT

In this whole chapter Paul is explaining how we are saved and the difference between striving to save yourself through the law, which is pointless, and God saving us through His death and resurrection. The action words that Paul use here are ‘believe’ and ‘declare’. The point here is that the believing creates action and this action results in declaration to others of the goodness of God, but more importantly, real change in the heart. This change, fostered by the Holy Spirit, is changing us from being self-centred and selfish into people with hearts of love and justice for others. That is, God-shaped hearts. Let yourselves be led by the Spirit of God which is the Spirit of truth. Salvation then becomes the result and not the goal. The result of us being closer aligned with God, through the choice to believe, the declaration of our belief and the transformative work of the Holy Spirit means that we are already a part of God’s kingdom. Our goal is not to get to heaven, our goal is to be closer aligned with God, with God’s kingdom starting in our hearts and minds. Amen. 


“After supper he took another cup of wine and said, “This cup is the new covenant between God and his people—an agreement confirmed with my blood, which is poured out as a sacrifice for you.”

Luke 22:20 NLT

‘This cup’ means Jesus’ death. The new covenant meaning a change from the old covenant. The old covenant was that God would look after His people if they would remain faithful to Him. The new covenant is an extension of this idea but enabling all people to receive the gift by believing and acting on that belief. In a nutshell God does all the heavy lifting by saving us. Our part of the bargain is to recognise what is happening and respond. Our response should be one of awe and respect and adoration for our God who has saved us and restores us and longs for us to choose Him. Like the good Father He is he invites us to come home but we would rather wallow with the pigs. The choice is ours – to dispense with pride and arrogance and to accept that we need a relationship with God, and to ‘forgive’ Him for letting this all happen. To understand that this mess was all done for love, for us and to see that God has a workaround. Jesus sacrificed Himself for us. But it is not our recognition that saves us. It is what Christ did that saves us. When we listen to the calling of the Spirit and respond in love towards others this is when we align ourselves with the heart of God. Many will say to Jesus, ‘how did you get these scars’? These are they that respond to God’s Spirit at work in the world to save us. For all have sinned but all are confirmed by the new covenant. The entire choice is up to us. 

Devo 18 December 2019

“But thank God! He gives us victory over sin and death through our Lord Jesus Christ.”

1 Corinthians 15:57 NLT

We have victory over sin, and the death that is a result of sin, through the only death that ever mattered. Sin is separation from God which leads to destruction because without God’s stabilising power our selfishness leads to all destruction. I heard this talk yesterday, which a good friend shared with me. []. Listen from 45:00 in particular.

This was a talk from Dr Graham Maxwell recorded in 1993. One very interesting statement that Dr Maxwell made was that the wages of sin is death not meaning our death but Jesus’ death. The point here is that the hosts of heaven did not think that God would willingly relinquish His power and willingly be tortured and die on a cross. They were surprised and shocked that God did that. Until Jesus/God died on that cross there was some doubt in the minds of many of the heavenly beings placed there by the devil’s comments with regards to sin leading to death or choosing a divergent path leading to death. The wages of sin was death of God. God’s willing sacrifice of death in this physical realm. Further than that it was also God’s willing participation in everything that we have experienced in this life – yet without sin. Jesus, on our planet, in our realm was really God living among us – living and dying exactly as every one of us will do and have done. The wages of sin were death for God. That was the important death. God willingly died to show the depth of His love – which is eternal. God showing how much He loves us. God died to show us that we can die too but yet live – live eternally. Amen. 

Devo 7 December 2019

“For the grace of God has been revealed, bringing salvation to all people. And we are instructed to turn from godless living and sinful pleasures. We should live in this evil world with wisdom, righteousness, and devotion to God,”

Titus 2:11-12 NLT

All people have salvation offered to them. Godless living and sinful pleasures distract us from God’s path. God’s path is righteousness, which means living God’s way; wisdom, which is choosing the right path; and devotion to God, that is putting Him first and recognising His place as Creator and a good Father. God offers us the choice of either salvation or death. Salvation is gained not through following a list of demands and penances and things like self-flagellation, but following our Creator who loves us and just wants honest and heartfelt connection. If only we really knew how cool God is! So salvation refers to what is written about in John 3:16-17. There are two options there, life or death – that is life, salvation, or death, never to be conscious again. God came to save and not to condemn or destroy us – only the devil wants that. These are the greatest verses in the Bible;  ““For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him.” John 3:16-17 NLT.  Amen to our Father who only wants to save us from eternal death and show that we can live an outward focussed life like Jesus. This is what will make us truly happy. Amen.

Devo 8 July 2019

“The eyes of the Lord watch over those who do right, and his ears are open to their prayers. But the Lord turns his face against those who do evil.””

1 Peter 3:12 NLT

Yes, God is watching, but this means He is listening for us. He desires nothing more than contact with us. He is always with us, as David reminds us; “I know the Lord is always with me. I will not be shaken, for he is right beside me.” Psalms 16:8 NLT. God hates evil, it is contrary to Him, for God is love. God IS love. GOD IS LOVE. God is the perfect personification of love, real and true. So to say that God hates evil is to say that love hates evil. Love is the opposite to evil. “Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.” 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 NLT. As such evil is not patient and kind, evil is jealous and boastful, rude and proud. Evil demands its own way. Evil is irritable, and keeps a record of wrongs. Evil rejoices in injustice and in hiding truth. Evil wants us to give up and lose faith and lose hope. God is ‘so’ the opposite. God is the quintessential opposite of evil and God is love. God wants to restore us and wants us to recognise His goodness. Let us turn our faces from evil and look to God always!

Last Big Red to Darwin and beyond



Sleeping in the red car

Breakfast in Emerald with Cassie


Journey through outback QLD and into the Northern Territory

Historic Daly Waters

Darwin we are here!!!

I got to drive!

Heartbreak Hotel and the State of Origin

Best Drive Yet

Anthony Lagoon beyond the Black Stump

Karlu Karlu – Devil’s Marbles

Alice Springs


Kings Canyon

Uluru and Kata Tjuta

Kuniya – python woman

Annihilationism – an interesting article from Theopedia

I found this article from Theopedia. A great summary of the debate between Annihilationism and other beliefs of the state of the dead and eternal life. Another great resource on this topic is the movie, Hell and Mr Fudge. Another interesting blog article is this one.

This is my personal position: That the presence of sin is something that God wants to, and has to, remove from existence. That the soul is not inherently eternal and that our eternity is entirely based on God. That the removal of those who reject God leaves us, who have gone through the great tribulation of a sinful life, will be living examples to future created beings of the wonder and majesty of a God who died to redeem those who were caught in this great tribulation. God loves all of his creations, even those who sin and reject Him. Keeping them alive and suffering in Hell forevermore seems contrary to a God who loves His children. Essentially I believe that those who reject God, reject eternity and as eternity is God’s gift so that we may live with him, these choose death – nothingness. Eternity is a gift, the gift of life with God. This is our real state, the one that Adam and Eve started in the Garden long ago. 

From (Accessed 9/6/17) [This text has not been modified in any way]
Annihilationism is the belief that the final fate of those who are not saved is literal and final death and destruction. It runs counter to the mainstream traditional Christian understanding of hell as eternal suffering and separation from God.
In contrast to the more traditional view, which holds that the wicked will remain conscious in hell forever, annhilationism teaches that, whether or not God may use hell to exact some conscious punishment for sins, he will eventually destroy or annihilate the wicked completely, leaving only the righteous to live on in immortality. This is essentially a moot point for Universalists since in their view all will be saved and hell will one day be empty.
Each of the three views, Annihilationism, Eternal Torment and Universalism, has at least one major feature in common with the alternatives. Universalism and Eternal Torment both affirm that everyone will have immortality. Universalism and Annihilationism affirm that evil will one day no longer exist, and Annihilationism and Eternal Torment both affirm that some will be punished eternally, without remedy. For the annihilationist, however, eternal punishment is seen as “permanent elimination.”
Conditional immortality
The doctrine of Annihilationism is often, although not always, bound-up with the notion of Conditional Immortality, a belief that the soul is not innately immortal. At death, both the wicked and righteous will pass into unconsciousness, only to be resurrected at the final judgment. God, who alone is immortal, passes on the gift of immortality to the righteous, who will live forever in heaven or on an idyllic earth, while the wicked will ultimately face the second death, i.e. extinction.
Even though it may be logically possible for one to believe in the natural immortality of the soul in the orthodox sense (rightly understood), and at the same time affirm that God will annihilate the wicked, “in actual practice those who teach annihilationism also teach conditional immortality, and vice versa. This accounts for the tendency to treat the terms as synonyms.” ^[1]^
While annihilationists claim that they find their position to be biblical, one common rationale is that divine justice and love make eternal suffering in Hell a morally repugnant idea. Many annihilationists claim that the idea is an unfair punishment for finite sins of people. How can this accurately reflect God’s ultimate victory over suffering and evil, they argue, when it permanently installs a place of suffering in the final, eternal order? Likewise, how can the saved live in blissful joy knowing that some of their loved ones burn forever in hell? With this in mind, many annihilationists (though certainly not all) claim that the idea of “eternal suffering in Hell” is a misconception and perversion of the truth about God’s justice and love.
Traditionalists respond that only God is qualified to determine what is truly just, and raise suspicions that annihilationists may be succumbing to modern cultural pressures. The argument does go both ways, however. A common response to the idea of annihilation is that God is infinitely holy and therefore demands infinite conscious punishment. Another argument is that preaching annihilationism will make people less eager to spread the Gospel. Annihilationists respond that what matters is not what any person believes the holiness of God demands, because only God is qualified to determine what is truly just, and that whether or not something is true is irrelevant of how it affects evangelism, if it is even conceded that annihilationism dampens missionary zeal in the first place.^[2]^
Main arguments

The biblical language of destruction

Annihilationist argue that language used in the Bible to describe the fate of the lost speaks in terms of destruction, death, and similar terms which imply a ceasing to exist. Examples include Matthew 10:28, where Jesus warns of God’s ability to destroy body and soul in Gehenna, Matt 13:40-42 where Jesus speaks of the judgement by comparing it to weeds being thrown into a furnace, Romans 6:23 where Paul says that the wages of sin is death, 2 Peter 2:6, where Peter says that what happened to Sodom and Gomorrah was an example of what will happen to the lost, and so forth.

Notions of hell depend on Greek ideas

Annihilationists also claim that traditional notions of hell depend on Greek ideas of an immortal soul, which have been erroneously read back into Christian Scripture. Traditionalists find this irrelevant, pointing to passages in the Bible they claim support the idea of an immortal soul. Annihilationists reply by denying that Scripture does teach this, instead pointing to Scripture that declares immortality itself to be a gift.
William Crockett responds,
There is no doubt that second-century Christian apologists drew heavily on Greek philosophy, especially on the philosophy of the Cynics, to support the Christian position. But Fudge makes it sound as if we have a struggle between Paul, the Hebraic-minded Jew, and post–New Testament hellenists. In fact, Paul himself was heavily influenced by hellenism, as was every Jew in Palestine during the first century. ‘In Hellenistic- Roman times,’ says Martin Hengel, ‘Jerusalem was an ‘international city,’ in which representatives of the Diaspora throughout the world met together.’ In short, says Hengel, ‘Palestinian Judaism must be regarded as Hellenistic Judaism.’ We need to be careful, therefore, not to suggest that the New Testament writers looked through Jewish Old Testament eyes when in fact their literature, education, culture, philosophy, and language were thoroughly permeated with Greek thought… [A]lready in the first century we know that the Pharisees of which Paul was one—had absorbed the doctrine of immortality. Josephus comments on the Pharisees: They believe that souls have power to survive death and that there are rewards and punishments under the earth for those who have led lives of virtue or vice: eternal imprisonment is the lot of evil souls, while the good souls receive an easy passage to a new life (Antiquities 8.14). Every soul, they maintain, is imperishable, but the soul of the good alone passes into another body, while the souls of the wicked suffer eternal punishment (War 2.163). We cannot say that New Testament writers endorsed the Platonic or Pharisaic belief in a never-dying soul. If this were the case, annihilationism as a view would be impossible to maintain because the soul in every human would simply exist forever, whether in heaven or in hell. In the New Testament, however, we find the Hebrew belief in the resurrection of the dead rather than the Greek immortality of the soul (1 Cor. 15:53-55; cf. Dan. 12:2). The Pharisees believed in the resurrection as well, but only for the righteous; yet they still expected the souls of the wicked to be punished eternally. Their view combined the Greek idea of immortality with the Hebrew doctrine of resurrection. The apostles taught that everyone, whether good or evil, would be resurrected (John 5:29; Acts 24:15; cf. Dan. 12:2); they did not suggest the soul had some special substance that made it eternal. Yet it is clear from the New Testament that both the righteous and the wicked are destined to exist forever even though the precise nature of the resurrected bodies is not always clear. All things depend on God for their existence, and it is God who resurrects and sustains his creatures, some unto life in heaven, and some unto death inthe place we call hell.^[3]^

Cosmic harmony

William Crockett writes,
“If [annihilationism] were not so, say the annihilationists, how could there be harmony in the cosmos? When God creates a new heaven and a new earth (Isa. 65:17; Rom. 8:19-23), is it not reasonable to expect the whole creation to be at peace with God? If somewhere, in some dark corner of the universe, there are still rebellious or suffering creatures gnashing their teeth, how can this be considered harmony? “This is a reasonable argument, but an argument that better suits universalism than it does annihilationism. The logic of harmony at the end of time would suggest that God will gather all his creation into one big harmonious family, rather than setting up a cosmic scaffold on the Judgment Day to dispatch masses of people into oblivion. “In any case, the problem with this kind of argument is that it imposes present-day expectations on ancient writers. The annihilationists suppose that a new heaven and a new earth should produce harmony, or else the renovation is somehow incomplete. To annihilationists it seems ludicrous to say that God will renovate nature, yet still have sinners languishing in hell. But the Jewish writers of late antiquity do not follow this line of reasoning. It matters little whether the wicked are destroyed, plunged into hell, or otherwise shriveled into insignificance. They never suggest that harmony must come from annihilation as opposed to eternal suffering. Put bluntly, harmony comes when evil is removed notwithstanding the method. To them the wicked are hostile elements, intrusions that mar the landscape of God’s renovation. When judgment finally comes, the wicked are cast aside, and that is all that matters.”^[4]^ To this, an annihilationist might argue that, philosophy and common beliefs of the apostle’s contemporaries aside, that the scripture does indicate cosmic harmony, that all things are under God and that his enemies will be done away with, which does not allow for the eternal existence, let alone torment, of the wicked. Passages such as 1 Corinthians 15:24-28 and Ephesians 1:10 are often cited ^[5]^
Literalism and symbolism
Much of the debate revolves around terminology and the symbolic imagery of Revelation. Annihilationists argue that passages that speak of the unsaved as perishing (John 3:16) or being destroyed (Matt. 10:28) should be taken literally. Traditionalists argue these terms do not necessarily include the idea of annihilation or ceasing to exist. Traditionalists argue that the passages in Revelation that speak of everlasting torment, even though it is apocalyptic imagery, should nonetheless be taken literally. Annihilationists point out that such imagery is, in virtually all other cases, not literal at all (e.g. the lamb, the beast, the stars, the candlesticks etc), that symbolic language from the Old Testament is used (such as when one compares Revelation 14:9-11, 19:3 with Isaiah 34:9-10), and claim that literal interpretations of the meanings of visions referred to in texts such as Revelation 20:10 lead to serious logical and hermeneutical problems. ^[6]^
History of support
The vast majority of Christian writers, from Tertullian to Luther, generally held to traditional notions of hell. However, the annihilationist position is not without some historical warrant. Embryonic forms of conditional immortality can be found in the writing of Justin Martyr (d. 165).^[7]Ignatius of Antioch (d. 107) is also supposed to be a conditionalist according to some conditionalist writers. In his Epistle to the Magnesians, he wrote “Let us not, therefore, be insensible to His kindness. For were He to reward us according to our works, we should cease to be”. ^[8]^ Some suggest it is also found in the writings of Arnobius (d. 330).^ [9]^ However, the Second Council of Constantinople (553) condemned the idea.
In 1520 Martin Luther (1483-1546) published a defense of 41 of his propositions and cited the pope’s immortality declaration as among “those monstrous opinions to be found in the Roman dunghill of decretals.” The 27th Proposition reads,
“However, I permit the Pope establish articles of faith for himself and for his own faithful – such are: a) That the bread and wine are transubstantiated in the sacrament; b) that the essence of God neither generates nor is generated; c) that the soul is the substantial form of the human body; d) that he (the pope) is emperor of the world and king of heaven, and earthly god; e) that the soul is immortal; and all these endless monstrosities in the Roman dunghill of decretals – in order that such as his faith is, such may be his gospel, such also his faithful, and such his church, and that the lips may have suitable lettuce and the lid may be worthy of the dish.” ^[10]^
Annihilationism today
Today many traditionalists claim that the doctrine is most often associated with groups descended from William Miller and the Adventist movement of the mid-1800s, including Seventh-day AdventistsJehovah’s Witnesses, [Blogger note: Why call JW’s Adventists?] and other Adventist groups. However, a number of evangelical theologians, including Anglican John Stott, Church of Christ elder Edward FudgeOpen Theists Clark Pinnock and John Sanders, as well as Philip Edgecombe Hughes and others have offered support for the doctrine, touching off a heated debate within mainstream evangelical Christianity.
Since the 1960s, Annihilationism seems to be gaining as a legitimate minority opinion within modern, conservative Protestant theology. It has found support and acceptance among some British evangelicals, although viewed with greater suspicion by their American counterparts.
Popular advocates
Further reading


  • David L. Edwards and John StottEvangelical Essentials: A Liberal-Evangelical Dialogue (Downers Grove: InterVarsity, 1988)
  • Edward W. Fudge, The Fire That Consumes (Fallbrook, CA: Verdict Publications, 1982)
  • Clark Pinnock, “The Destruction of the Finally Impenitent,” Criswell Theological Review 4 (Spring 1990). [1]
  • Le Roy Edwin Froom, The Conditionalist Faith of Our Fathers, 2 vols. (Washington, DC: The Review and Herald Publishing Association, 1965), a Seventh-Day Adventist view
  • Philip E. Hughes, The True Image: The Origin and Destiny of Man in Christ (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1989).


  • Christopher W. Morgan and Robert A. Peterson, eds., Hell Under Fire : Modern Scholarship Reinvents Eternal Punishment (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2004) ISBN 0310240417
  • John H. Gerstner, Repent or Perish: With a Special Reference to the Conservative Attack on Hell (Ligonier, Pennsylvania: Soli Deo Gloria Publications, 1990) ISBN 187761114X
  • Robert A. Morey, Death and the Afterlife (Minneapolis: Bethany House, 1984) ISBN 0871234335
  • William G. T. Shedd, The Doctrine of Endless Punishment (Carlisle: Banner of Truth, 1986) ISBN 0851517544
  • Robert A. Peterson, Hell on Trial: The Case for Eternal Punishment (Phillipsburg, NJ: Presbyterian and Reformed Press, 1995) ISBN 0875523722
  • Harry Buis – The Doctrine of Eternal Punishment

Devo – pride and pity

Proud: showing the arrogant attitude of people who think they are better or more important than others

Pitiful: causing feelings of dislike or disgust by not being good enough

I think it’s safe to say that humanity always functions within both of these states. After the fall of man, a major shift happened within Adam that would forever affect his offspring. In their departure from God, Adam and Eve lost their grasp on their identity, soul, joy, and sense of wholeness. Being disconnected from the One who created you can only, by nature, bring about brokenness.

From this place, we don’t know God and therefore we don’t know ourselves. In not knowing God, apart from His grace, we are incapable and, quite frankly, wickedly unwilling to seek Him to complete us. Therefore, the only place we believe we can find wholeness is in the tangible: people, things, and roles. I would argue that seeking wholeness in things and roles still finds its root in seeking identity in people. Validation in front of the eyes of others fills us with a sense of self-satisfaction from their praise or envy. It makes a lot of sense for us to see sin manifest itself so evidently within relationships because we are made in the image of God and we reflect His plan for us as relational beings.

I challenge you to think about your motivations. I challenge you to accept God into your life and in accepting Him you can be complete in Him. 

Taken in part from