Self-Discipline Friday, Jul 13 2018 

The Scripture for today may be found in 2 Peter 1:2-8:

2 Peter 1:2-8 Discipline yourself….examine yourself….test yourself…

Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord,

According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue:

Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.

And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge;

And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness;

And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity.

For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Routine is not godliness. It keeps you in the first “add” which is “add to your faith virtue”; you must graduate on to “and virtue knowledge” through bible study. And then move on to “and knowledge temperance” through prayer. And then move on to “and temperance patience” through waiting on the LORD and watching for his coming. And then move on to “and to patience godliness” through well doing. And then move on to “and to godliness brotherly kindness” through grace and forgiveness to others. And then move on to “and to brotherly kindness charity” through the love of the Holy Spirit within you.

It is not that you no longer have faith when you acquire virtue but rather each is built one upon the other until God is glorified.

Advertisements

My Struggles Thursday, Jun 7 2018 

 

The Scripture for today can be found in the book of Paul’s letter to the Ephesians chapter 6 verse 10:

The Armor of God

10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might.

As Christians, we are called to fight in a battle against the devil and his minions. Actually; to be honest, it is a war made up of many battles. It isn’t just a matter of a one-time battle that when it is over you get to go home. No, it is full on warfare that lasts our entire lives. It isn’t some namby-pamby skirmish. Every single day, we are to “put on” the armor of God. We are to “put on” Christ.

Joshua 1:7 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Only be strong and very courageous; [a]be careful to do according to all the law which Moses My servant commanded you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, so that you may [b]have success wherever you go.

2 Chronicles 32:7 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

“Be strong and courageous, do not fear or be dismayed because of the king of Assyria nor because of all the horde that is with him; for the one with us is greater than the one with him.

Isaiah 35:4 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Say to those with anxious heart,
“Take courage, fear not.
Behold, your God will come with vengeance;
The recompense of God will come,
But He will save you.”

It isn’t going to do us any good to complain or get discouraged. God does not fight our battles for us, but He does fight our battles with us. We are still called to our duty as Christians. He does not leave us alone on the field of battle. It takes courage to be a Christian.

Perhaps, I should have titled today’s study: “Our Struggles”.

 

 

Come Back to the LORD-Day 9 Friday, Mar 30 2018 

The Scripture for today can be found in the book of Psalms chapter 119 verses 65-72:

Teth.

65 You have dealt well with Your servant,
O Lord, according to Your word.
66 Teach me good [a]discernment and knowledge,
For I believe in Your commandments.
67 Before I was afflicted I went astray,
But now I keep Your word.
68 You are good and do good;
Teach me Your statutes.
69 The arrogant [b]have forged a lie against me;
With all my heart I will observe Your precepts.
70 Their heart is [c]covered with fat,
But I delight in Your law.
71 It is good for me that I was afflicted,
That I may learn Your statutes.
72 The law of Your mouth is better to me
Than thousands of gold and silver pieces.

There are benefits in coming back to the LORD. He teaches us directly from His Word. His Word is applicable to all people in all times in all places in all circumstances.

For we know Proverbs 3:5-6

Trust in the Lord with all your heart
And do not lean on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge Him,
And He will make your paths straight.

 

 

Come Back to the Lord – Day 7 Wednesday, Mar 28 2018 

The scripture for today is Psalms 119:49-56

Zayin.

49 Remember the word to Your servant,
[s]In which You have made me hope.
50 This is my comfort in my affliction,
That Your word has [t]revived me.
51 The arrogant utterly deride me,
Yet I do not turn aside from Your law.
52 I have remembered Your ordinances from [u]of old, O Lord,
And comfort myself.
53 Burning indignation has seized me because of the wicked,
Who forsake Your law.
54 Your statutes are my songs
In the house of my pilgrimage.
55 O Lord, I remember Your name in the night,
And keep Your law.
56 This has become mine,
[v]That I observe Your precepts.

When the world begins closing in, we are taught to ask “WWJD?”, (what would Jesus do?).

He would seek the Lord in prayer. Go to some quiet place and plead our cause.

For we know:

Psalm 27:4-6 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

One thing I have asked from the Lord, that I shall seek:
That I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life,
To behold the [a]beauty of the Lord
And to [b]meditate in His temple.
For in the day of trouble He will conceal me in His [c]tabernacle;
In the secret place of His tent He will hide me;
He will lift me up on a rock.
And now my head will be lifted up above my enemies around me,
And I will offer in His tent sacrifices [d]with shouts of joy;
I will sing, yes, I will sing praises to the Lord.

My Dreams-Part 2 Friday, Jan 26 2018 

The verse I would like to reference may be found in the book of Daniel, chapter 2, verse 1 And in the second year of the reign of Nebuchadnezzar Nebuchadnezzar dreamed dreams, wherewith his spirit was troubled, and his sleep brake from him.

In the second dream, I was sitting in a classroom and Jesus was the teacher. At the front of the class on a TV tray was a vase that had been painted white with small tea roses all over it. I thought it was the most beautiful thing I had ever seen. It was that same feeling you get when you see your newborn baby for the first time.

His instruction was, I would like each of you to look very closely at this piece and be ready to tell me what you see. So, when it was my turn, I took the vase in my hands and looked at it carefully peering down into it. I was mortified at what I saw. There were hundreds of tiny cracks in it that didn’t seem noticeable from a distance. I felt heart sick because I knew that the beautiful vase could never be used for what it was intended since the water required to hold the flowers would simply run right out of the cracks.

So when it was my turn to speak, I told Him. At first, I saw a beautiful piece from a distance but the closer I looked the more cracks I saw. I felt heartsick at the thought of it.

The meaning of the dream can be found in 2 Corinthians 13:

Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?

But I trust that ye shall know that we are not reprobates.

Now I pray to God that ye do no evil; not that we should appear approved, but that ye should do that which is honest, though we be as reprobates.

For we can do nothing against the truth, but for the truth.

For we are glad, when we are weak, and ye are strong: and this also we wish, even your perfection.

And also: 1 Peter 1:14-16

14 As obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance:

15 But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation;

16 Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.

When I was first saved and hadn’t been studying the word very long, I thought I wasn’t all that bad because I hadn’t ever killed anybody nor stolen anything. In my mind sin had levels of intensity where murder was the worst of all.

But as the years went on and I “looked deeper” into the Word. It revealed the “cracks” in me. So this was a reminder dream to stay in the Word which is able to save: 1 James 1:20-22

20 For the wrath of man works not the righteousness of God.

21 Wherefore lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness, and receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls.

22 But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.

 

My Holiness Monday, Jan 8 2018 

Today’s scripture can be found in first Peter one verses 15 and 16:  15 but [p]like the Holy One who called you, [q]be holy yourselves also in all your behavior; 16 because it is written, “You shall be holy, for I am holy.”

Now I am empathetic at the cringes out there of those who feel the title of this blog post is radically offensive. I can just hear the “who do you think you are?” gasps of indignation.

The verse Romans 12:3 comes to mind: For through the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think more highly of himself than he ought to think; but to think so as to have sound judgment, as God has allotted to each a measure of faith.

The devil himself will accuse Christians for even thinking that we might be able to “be holy in all your behavior.”

But “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”

The whole purpose for Christians is to become more and more like Christ, who is Holy, through the process of sanctification.

The verse 1 Corinthians 1:29-31 also comes to mind: 29 so that no [a]man may boast before God. 30 But [b]by His doing you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, [c]and righteousness and sanctification, and redemption, 31 so that, just as it is written, “Let him who boasts, boast in the Lord.”

To be sanctified means to be set aside for holy use.

Now the Holy One is the one who uses us for His purposes.

You know that God is a “faithful creator”.  1 Peter 4:19 19 Wherefore let them that suffer according to the will of God commit the keeping of their souls to him in well doing, as unto a faithful Creator.

God even creates the faithfulness in us. It isn’t ours of our own doing. We are His workmanship. It is the gift of God.

And 1 Timothy 1:12 states: 12 And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who hath enabled me, for that he counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry;

Paul is telling Timothy that Christ “counted him faithful”.

Now let’s look at some Old Testament clues from Psalm 89: 5 The heavens will praise Your wonders, O Lord; Your faithfulness also in the assembly of the holy ones.

There are two words within this verse that I would like to draw your attention: first notice it says, “holy ones”, plural. God has given both faithfulness and holiness and wonders. Second notice it says, “heavens will praise”, plural.

Perhaps I should change the title of this blog post to “My Holiness and Faithfulness” by God’s gift.

 

God’s Power Friday, Dec 15 2017 

It is important for us to understand the power of God Almighty. Without the knowledge of His power our faith grows dim. Without the knowledge of His power our praise grows silent. We can but whisper faintly.

I love what Jehoshaphat said in 2 Chronicles 20:6 …“O Lord, the God of our fathers, are You not God in the heavens? And are You not ruler over all the kingdoms of the nations? Power and might are in Your hand so that no one can stand against You.

I love Ezra 8:22  “The hand of our God is [c]favorably disposed to all those who seek Him, but His power and His anger are against all those who forsake Him.”

And Job said, 12:13 “With Him are wisdom and might;
To Him belong counsel and understanding.

Job 27:10 “Will he take delight in the Almighty?

Will he call on God at all times?
11 “I will instruct you in the [a]power of God;
What is with the Almighty I will not conceal.
12 “Behold, all of you have seen it;
Why then do you [b]act foolishly.

Daniel said:

19 Then the mystery was revealed to Daniel in a night vision. Then Daniel blessed the God of heaven; 20 Daniel said,

“Let the name of God be blessed forever and ever,
For wisdom and power belong to Him.
21 “It is He who changes the times and the epochs;
He removes kings and [a]establishes kings;
He gives wisdom to wise men
And knowledge to [b]men of understanding.

Jesus said:  69 But from now on the Son of Man will be seated at the right hand of the power of God.”

Jesus has power:  38 [a]You know of Jesus of Nazareth, how God anointed Him with the Holy Spirit and with power, [b]and how He went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him.

The Gospel has power: 18 For the word of the cross is foolishness to those who [b]are perishing, but to us who [c]are being saved it is the power of God.

The Holy Spirit has power: Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you will abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

The Kingdom of God has power: 20 For the kingdom of God does not consist in [b]words but in power.

Faith has power: so that your faith would not [b]rest on the wisdom of men, but on the power of God.

This power is in us: But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, so that the surpassing greatness of the power will be of God and not from ourselves.

For God has not given us a spirit of [a]timidity, but of power and love and [b]discipline.

His power protects us: who are protected by the power of God through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.

By power we praise God for all things: 11 Worthy are You, our Lord and our God, to receive glory and honor and power; for You created all things, and because of Your will they [a]existed, and were created.”

 

 

God’s Healing Tuesday, Oct 3 2017 

God is our only hope.

1 Corinthians 6:13

13 You say, “Food for the stomach and the stomach for food, and God will destroy them both.” The body, however, is not meant for sexual immorality but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body.

Psalm 103:3-4

who forgives all your sins
    and heals all your diseases,
who redeems your life from the pit
    and crowns you with love and compassion.

Job 5:26

26 You will come to the grave in full vigor,
    like sheaves gathered in season.

1 John 3:21-22

21 Dear friends, if our hearts do not condemn us, we have confidence before God 22 and receive from him anything we ask, because we keep his commands and do what pleases him.

Matthew 11:6

6 “Blessed is anyone who does not stumble on account of me.”

James 5:15

15 And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise them up. If they have sinned, they will be forgiven.

“We must have way down deep in our hearts a settled resolve to serve God better than we ever have before.” Maria Woodworth Etter

 

God’s Anchor Tuesday, May 16 2017 

As we begin this study of God’s Anchor I’d like you to turn in your bible to the book of Acts, which is a record of the acts of the Apostles of Christ. It is in the New Testament. It is the first book after the four gospels. Now go to the 27th chapter beginning in verse 13. We have here the story of “The Storm.”  Just as in life, the story begins where “life is a breeze”. We see here in the first verse of this story, “When a gentle south wind began to blow, they saw their opportunity”; so far in the story things are going pretty good. If you know how the weather works on this earth, you know that a “south wind” is warm and a “gentle south wind” is even better. In order to move forward on the sea in a sailing ship you need the wind to blow. Back in the day of Paul, the people of that era did their business primarily by ship. It was their most rewarding form of transportation. So, as the story goes, “opportunity knocks.” They see their chance. And they take it. It says in the text, “So they weighed anchor and sailed along the shore of Crete.” Now the word “Crete” means carnal or fleshly. You’ll notice that at first they “sailed along the shore”. This is like what our Christian life is like when we first get saved. Many times, God calls us away from our old life. Some of us, unsure of our bearings continue to hang around our old friends and continue to pursue fleshly and carnal pursuits.

But the Holy Spirit frequently sends us a reminder of our calling. As the story goes, “Before very long, a wind of hurricane force, called the Northeaster, swept down from the island.” Putting on our weatherman’s hat again, we know that winds from the northeast are “cold” and “harsh”.

 The ship was caught by the storm and could not head into the wind; so we gave way to it and were driven along.” When we are first saved it can be difficult to pull away from “the world”. Many people flail. Change can be scary.

As we passed to the lee of a small island called Cauda, we were hardly able to make the lifeboat secure, 17 so the men hoisted it aboard. Then they passed ropes under the ship itself to hold it together. Because they were afraid they would run aground on the sandbars of Syrtis, they lowered the sea anchor[b] and let the ship be driven along.” We may even try to hold our old life together as it is falling apart. Cauda means tail. It is when we are at the “end” of our old life that the enemy attacks the hardest because he does not want to lose us. He lies to us about our destiny. He uses fear as a weapon against us. Syrtis means quicksand. “They lowered the sea anchor and let the ship be driven along.”

“We took such a violent battering from the storm that the next day they began to throw the cargo overboard. 19 On the third day, they threw the ship’s tackle overboard with their own hands. 20 When neither sun nor stars appeared for many days and the storm continued raging, we finally gave up all hope of being saved.” He steals our hope. He seeks to kill and destroy our new life. He blinds us to the truth. You see sailors use the stars to guide their ships. But when you cannot see the stars you flail, and the storms of life keep raging on.

  “After they had gone a long time without food, Paul stood up before them and said: “Men, you should have taken my advice not to sail from Crete; then you would have spared yourselves this damage and loss.22 But now I urge you to keep up your courage, because not one of you will be lost; only the ship will be destroyed.” The truth comes out. Paul had warned them not to sail. Do we listen to our spiritual authorities in Christ? Or do we go on about doing things the old way? The truth is that everyone dies, “only the ship will be destroyed.” But we shall be saved. This is the encouragement of the gospel.

Do we anchor ourselves to this earth and just flail along?

“Last night an angel of the God to whom I belong and whom I serve stood beside me 24 and said, ‘Do not be afraid, Paul. You must stand trial before Caesar; and God has graciously given you the lives of all who sail with you.’ 25 So keep up your courage, men, for I have faith in God that it will happen just as he told me. 26 Nevertheless, we must run aground on some island.” Do not be afraid.   “Keep up your courage.” “Have faith in God.” “It will happen just as He told us in His Word.” “We must run aground on some island”. i,e, pay the consequences of our actions. But we and our household shall be saved. This is the end of the story but the beginning of a new life in Christ.

 

God’s Breakthrough Sunday, Apr 2 2017 

Now before you flog me and have me crucified hear me out. I’m writing you to tell you the truth about God. So many of you don’t even believe there is a God. If that is you then this post is for you.

If you do believe there is a God it will be okay for you to read this post because it just might help you to see God from a new perspective. Each person has there own perspective about God and who He is and how he operates. Maybe you’ll identify with mine.

“There is nothing new under the sun.” Ecclesiastes 1:9

Almost since the beginning of time, man has sought the answer to who is God?

Jesus said, “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life.” John 14:6

Please don’t just skip over this verse because in it are the keys to the kingdom. God is telling us exactly who He is.

First he is the great “I AM.”  Exodus 3:14

Second he is the “Way”. Jesus said this to his disciples to reveal his true identity.  John 14:6

Third he is the “Truth”. It doesn’t say that he is truthful, although He is truthful. It says He is the “Truth”. He is the living breathing truth in each of us. When you are full of truth you are full of Him. The truth isn’t just something you speak, although it is that, it is a goal, a purpose, a “Way” of living. It is your whole focus.

The Scriptures are full of times Jesus said, “Verily, Verily, I say unto you.” That is like saying “Very truthfully, I say unto you.” There is no greater truth than Christ and him crucified. The facts of his life are the truth of your salvation. He is your salvation.

Fourth Jesus said, “No man comes to the Father but by me.” John 14:6 Again He is telling you who God is and how He operates. He operates through Christ. And when you are “in Christ” you have God in you by means of his Spirit.

He says, “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” Psalm 46:10

He says, “At the name of Jesus every knee will bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is LORD.” Romans 14:11

It does not say just “Christians”. It says “every knee”.

He says, “I am God Almighty”. Genesis 35:11

Fifth, He is the Life. This life he speaks of is eternal, everlasting, unending, for..EVER.

He says, “I am the Alpha and Omega”. Revelation 1:8

He is.

He is God the Son, God the Father, and God the Holy Ghost. We are made in his image; body, mind, and spirit.

” We are his workmanship.” Ephesians 2:10

“We were made to worship Him”. John 4:23

When God breaks through and reveals himself to you, it is no small thing. See how he revealed himself to Saul on the road to Damascus.  He says, “Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me.” Acts 9:4.

 

Next Page »