Always, In All Ways Friday, Jul 12 2019 

Always, in all ways, you give me good things.

By your hand you heal me.

By your lips you seal me.

By your Word you guide me;

Your Spirit inside me,

Leading me on….

Always, in all ways:

You deserve all praise.

For giving us our faith.

For showing us your ways.

For leading us on….

Always in all ways:

You have made us whole.

Justified our soul.

You called us to be true.

To live our lives in you.

Always, in all ways:

Predestined, we sing

For the glory you bring

By the gospel of freedom

You lead us on….

Always, in all ways.

Unabridged Christianity Monday, Jan 14 2019 

The Example of Nicodemus

John 3:9-13

Nicodemus said to Him, “How can these things be?” 10 Jesus answered and said to him, “Are you the teacher of Israel and do not understand these things? 11 Truly, truly, I say to you, we speak of what we know and testify of what we have seen, and you do not accept our testimony. 12 If I told you earthly things and you do not believe, how will you believe if I tell you heavenly things? 13 No one has ascended into heaven, but He who descended from heaven: the Son of Man.

For some time now, we have been studying the gospel of John to learn about the Christian life, eternal life.

John 1:16
16 For of His fullness [awe have all received, and grace upon grace.

This is what it means to be a Christian, that we receive of His fullness and nothing less. It isn’t just intellectual or just being forgiven. Christianity is about the life of God in the souls of men.

Jesus said, “I am come that they might have life and that more abundantly” There is a superabundance available when He acts.

We are now considering one of the greatest obstacles to receiving the gift of the new birth from God. We’ve been studying the manifestations of the new birth, the regeneration. Now we go further into the struggle of Nicodemus, “How can these things be?”

It appears to be the great obstacle for him, for Christ seekers, and even for some Christians to receive of His fullness, grace upon grace.

We are offered the exceeding riches of God’s grace, the unspeakable joy, the peace that passes understanding, and the unsearchable riches of Christ. We are told we can receive of the fullness of God. Do we?

The reason we don’t is because there is an enemy who is always trying to step between us and stop us from receiving of His fullness. The primary weapon he uses is pride of intellect and confidence in understanding. Galatians deals with this problem. There is always the problem of falling back on our own works, our won ability, our own understanding.

But the Psalmist says, “Lean not on your own understanding but in all your ways acknowledge Him and He shall direct your path.” That is walking in the Spirit.

Jesus says that the new birth is essential. The problem is we all have a desire to “understand”. That was the original sin. The new seeker of Christ says he won’t believe unless he can understand. Their logic is flawed. Do they understand electricity? Most don’t, but they still use it.

They limit the measure of God to the limit of their understanding. That is what is happening in the church today. If a man can’t understand a particular scripture they leave it out. Men are no longer governed by the scriptures. Revelation is no longer the authority. Their understanding is the authority. Philosophy is their authority. They throw out the miraculous and supernatural. They want only a practical, neat, tidy, non-intrusive god that they can control. They want to go on with their lives the way they want to run them.

The limiting of God is fatal. They are afraid of the breaking in of the supernatural.

Matthew 11:25 25 At that time Jesus said, “I praise You, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that You have hidden these things from the wise and intelligent and have revealed them to infants.

1 Corinthians 2:14
But a natural man does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually appraised.

1 Corinthians 2:15
15 But he who is spiritual appraises all things, yet he himself is appraised by no one.

The true Christian understands but he is an enigma to others.

What are these “heavenly things” mentioned in John 3:12 above? Salvation, the blessed Trinity; three persons yet one God, the glory of God, eternal life , communion with God, phenomena, miracles…

John 17:3
This is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.

2 Corinthians 12:2-4
I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago—whether in the body I do not know, or out of the body I do not know, God knows—such a man was caught up to the third heaven. And I know how such a man—whether in the body or apart from the body I do not know, God knows— was caught up into Paradise and heard inexpressible words, which a man is not permitted to speak.

Paul was “caught up”. He didn’t know, God only knows.

Revelation 4:2-4 Immediately I was in the Spirit; and behold, a throne was standing in heaven, and One sitting on the throne. And He who was sitting was like a jasper stone and a sardius in appearance; and there was a rainbow around the throne, like an emerald in appearance. Around the throne were twenty-four thrones; and upon the thrones I saw twenty-four elders sitting, clothed in white garments, and golden crowns on their heads.

John also was “in the Spirit” and beheld “heavenly things”.

1 Peter 1:10-12 10 As to this salvation, the prophets who prophesied of the grace that would come to you made careful searches and inquiries, 11 seeking to know what person or time the Spirit of Christ within them was indicating as He predicted the sufferings of Christ and the glories to follow. 12 It was revealed to them that they were not serving themselves, but you, in these things which now have been announced to you through those who preached the gospel to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven—things into which angels long to look.

Ephesians 3:10  so that the manifold wisdom of God might now be made known through the church to the rulers and the authorities in the heavenly places.

Angels don’t understand either because it is incomprehensible.

The incarnation-God and man mixed, “great is the mystery of godliness”, and the Spiritual life are all “heavenly things”. What do you know about these “heavenly things”?


Unabridged Christianity Wednesday, Jan 9 2019 

O God, Thou Art My God (2)

When Jesus told Nicodemus you must be born again, he was explaining the difference between the Jewish religion which Nicodemus knew and understood and becoming a Christian. Christianity is different from all religions in this way, “you must be born again”.

Christianity isn’t an idea or a philosophy that someone believes but rather it is something that happens to you. Christians receive this new birth or new life from God.

We are continuing to ascend up to the pinnacle of truth in order to be absolutely certain that we have received this new life. So, the true Christian comes to realize that they have received a knowledge of God. It is internal.

Ephesians 3:16
16 That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man.

The unregenerate person is only one man. He is not aware of the “inner being”.

The Christian is aware that his body is just a tent. What becomes important to him is the “inner man”. He realizes that it will go on after the tent has turned to dust.

To the non-Christian there is only living in the flesh. That is what is important to him. His relationships are entirely made up of relationships with other men and women. He depends upon others for everything, his interests, his value, his needs. When nobody else is around there is no consolation or comfort. He is left bereft.

The man concerned about the knowledge of God however is aware of the new man within. 2 Corinthians 4:16
16 For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day.

There is an internal life. The Christian realizes that it is possible in this life to know God. You do not have to wait until you die to meet Him. God is nigh.

This intimate relationship with God becomes more and more important to the Christian. He enjoys Him. The Psalmist says, in Psalm 42:1 ”
As the hart panteth after the water brooks, so panteth my soul after thee, O God. “

Once a person experiences a relationship with God he desires it again and again.

Remember how Jacob in Genesis 32 would not let Him go. It is like that. The Christian is no longer wondering if there is a God, but “he knows that God is and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him”. It is a whole new paradigm. Once you’ve found Him, you won’t let Him go. Nothing matters but this. It becomes the center of your whole life; the heart of it.

Do not believe the lie the devil will tell you that this is only for special people. It only happened a few times in the bible. It happens to every person who has been born again. John 1:16
16 And of his fullness have all we received, and grace for grace.

The absolute proof that you are born of the Spirit is this desire within you to know Him more and more. The life of God within you is known by you. You are concerned with the persons of the Trinity. Are you in interested in Jesus, in His person, His glory? The Holy Spirit was sent to “testify of Him”. Are you interested in the person of the Holy Spirit? Do you want to know Him, His gentleness, his meekness, so like a dove? Do you think about the Father also, each person of the Trinity? Do you meditate upon His Word? Does it humble you? Do you have a living interest in scripture? Do you glory in the cross? Are you awed by the resurrection? Romans 6:11
11 Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord .

It has happened. Know that it is done. Look to Him. Realize that He is there and “It is finished!”

Do you find it impossible to express the joy over what Christ has done for you? Has He left you speechless? Does He satisfy you? Do you love Him? Is He “Your God”? Do you delight in singing His praise? Does “grace got you”?

My Trickle, My Ocean Thursday, Dec 13 2018 

The scripture for today may be found in the book of Ezekiel chapter 47 verses 1-4:

Then he brought me back to the door of the house; and behold, water was flowing from under the threshold of the house toward the east, for the house faced east. And the water was flowing down from under, from the right side of the house, from south of the altar. He brought me out by way of the north gate and led me around [a]on the outside to the outer gate by way of the gate that faces east. And behold, water was trickling from the south side.

When the man went out toward the east with a line in his hand, he measured a thousand cubits, and he led me through the water, water reaching the ankles. Again he measured a thousand and led me through the water, water reaching the knees. Again he measured a thousand and led me through the water, water reaching the loins.

What do we find here in the scripture? Ezekiel is being shown a vision from the LORD. He is looking at the “front door” to the Temple of God.  When you want to meet with someone, you go to their house. You go first to their front door. Jesus said, “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life, no man comes to the Father but by me.  Jesus is the “front door” if you will and we must go “through Him” to get to the Father.

In the vision Ezekiel sees water flowing from under the threshold of the house toward the east. Remember how Jesus told the woman at the well, “If you would have asked me, I would have given you living water.”

John 4:7-14 There *came a woman of Samaria to draw water. Jesus *said to her, “Give Me a drink.” For His disciples had gone away into the city to buy food. Therefore the Samaritan woman *said to Him, “How is it that You, being a Jew, ask me for a drink since I am a Samaritan woman?” (For Jews have no dealings with Samaritans.) 10 Jesus answered and said to her, “If you knew the gift of God, and who it is who says to you, ‘Give Me a drink,’ you would have asked Him, and He would have given you living water.” 11 She *said to Him, “[a]Sir, You have nothing to draw with and the well is deep; where then do You get that living water? 12 You are not greater than our father Jacob, are You, who gave us the well, and drank of it himself and his sons and his cattle?” 13 Jesus answered and said to her, “Everyone who drinks of this water will thirst again; 14 but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him shall never thirst; but the water that I will give him will become in him a well of water springing up to eternal life.”

And remember at the great day of the feast when He said in John 7: 37 Now on the last day, the great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, “[a]If anyone is thirsty, [b]let him come to Me and drink. 38 He who believes in Me, as the Scripture said, ‘From [c]his innermost being will flow rivers of living water.’” 39 But this He spoke of the Spirit, whom those who believed in Him were to receive; for the Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified.

Notice it says in Ezekiel 47:1 the water was flowing toward the east, for the house was facing east. What do we see when we face the east? The sun rises in the east. Jesus said in John 8:12 12 Then Jesus again spoke to them, saying, “I am the Light of the world; he who follows Me will not walk in the darkness, but will have the Light of life.”

And the water is flowing down from under, from the right side of the house, from south of the altar. If we begin in the east on a map and begin to make a circle counter clockwise toward the south the vision begins to unfold. In God’s house, i.e. heaven where is Jesus?

Acts 2:33
33 Therefore having been exalted [a]to the right hand of God, and having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, He has poured forth this which you both see and hear.

Now in Ezekiel 47:2 “He brought me out by way of the north gate. So what comes out of the north? The farther north you go the more barren it becomes.


..and led me around [a]on the outside to the outer gate by way of the gate that faces east. And behold, water was trickling from the south side.”

When a woman has a baby, sometimes when the water breaks it starts with a trickle from the “south” so to speak, “down there” or “down under”. God, Himself is able to give “eternal birth” through Christ Jesus. Remember Jesus said to Nicodemus, “You must be born again.”

Ezekiel 47:3
When the man went out toward the east with a line in his hand, he measured a thousand cubits, and he led me through the water, water reaching the ankles.

The man here is Jesus leading him on through the Christian life.  He doesn’t start out in the deep water. No-no. He begins his long journey in water that is ankle deep. As new Christians Christ doesn’t start out by telling us all the secrets of the universe.  He understands that we are but flesh and will only be able to “wade” as it were in the beginning.

1 Corinthians 13:11
11 When I was a child, I used to speak like a child, think like a child, reason like a child; when I [a]became a man, I did away with childish things.

Ezekiel 47:4
Again he measured a thousand and led me through the water, water reaching the knees. Again he measured a thousand and led me through the water, water reaching the loins.

You see as you walk through your Christian life you go deeper and deeper with Christ leading. You become cleaner and cleaner. The Holy Spirit, whom Christ is dipping you into one step at a time is convicting you of more and more sin in your life. God said in 1 Peter 1:16 
16 because it is written, “You shall be holy, for I am holy.”

And in Leviticus 20:7 
You shall consecrate yourselves therefore and be holy, for I am the Lord your God.

Do we all start out knowing all about the doctrines of Christ? Do we know all about salvation, justification, sanctification, glorification? No!

Romans 8:29-30 29 For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren; 30 and these whom He predestined, He also called; and these whom He called, He also justified; and these whom He justified, He also glorified.

1 Corinthians 13:12
12 For now we see in a mirror [a]dimly, but then face to face; now I know in part, but then I will know fully just as I also have been fully known.

John 14:12 12 Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do, he will do also; and greater works than these he will do; because I go to the Father.

God’s Choice Monday, Dec 10 2018 

The scripture for today is John 1:40-42 40 One of the two which heard John speak, and followed him, was Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother. 41 He first finds his own brother Simon, and says unto him, We have found the Messiah, which is, being interpreted, the Christ. 42 And he brought him to Jesus. And when Jesus beheld him, he said, You are Simon the son of Jona: you shall be called Cephas, which is by interpretation, A stone.

Cephas means Peter which means stone or rock. There is a very great lesson to be learned about the story of these two brothers. Take first Andrew who introduces his brother, Peter to Jesus. He also introduced others to Jesus. He is not really very well known as a disciple. He introduced the boy with the 5 loaves and 2 fish to Jesus before the multiplying of the food that fed thousands. 

Peter on the other hand held a position of leadership among the apostles. Matthew 16: 17 And Jesus said to him, “Blessed are you, Simon [a]Barjona, because flesh and blood did not reveal this to you, but My Father who is in heaven. 18 I also say to you that you are [b]Peter, and upon this [c]rock I will build My church; and the gates of Hades will not overpower it.

Peter preached very powerfully in Acts even after he was told by the Pharisees to stop preaching in the name of Jesus.  In the spiritual realm there are laws which do not operate within the natural realm. It was the same power that gave Peter the power to preach as was given to Andrew to tell others about Christ.

Peter also “fed thousands” through his preaching.

The LORD gave the parable of the laborers in the vineyard who all received the same amount no matter what time of day they began working. You don’t keep ledgers or books in the spiritual realm. Being a retired accountant this was a very difficult lesson for me to grasp. God is sovereign and he can give grace to whomever He chooses.

The rock is not Peter but rather anyone God chooses.  He chose Moses. He chose David. He chose Abraham. He chose Mary. He chose Jacob. He chose you. John 15:16 16 You did not choose Me but I chose you, and appointed you that you would go and bear fruit, and that your fruit would remain, so that whatever you ask of the Father in My name He may give to you.

My Regeneration, My Joy-Part 5 Wednesday, Nov 14 2018 

The scripture for today may be found in the book of John Chapter 3 verses 1-6

The New Birth

Now there was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews; this man came to Jesus by night and said to Him, “Rabbi, we know that You have come from God as a teacher; for no one can do these signs that You do unless God is with him.” Jesus answered and said to him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.”

Nicodemus *said to Him, “How can a man be born when he is old? He cannot enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born, can he?” Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.

The regeneration that we get is a secret work of the Holy Ghost. We know from the parable of the sower who sows his seed and it grows “he knows not how.” It is like wind that you cannot see but the effects are evident. Regeneration is a profound work on our hearts.

2 Corinthians 3:2-3

You are our letter, written in our hearts, known and read by all men; being manifested that you are a letter of Christ, cared for by us, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts.

The law is written on tablets of stone that if it is followed will appear clean on the outside but on the inside, not so much. But regeneration is written upon the tables of the “heart” which is the very center of our personality which represents change on the inside that shines forth to the outside.

So morality is a periphery work that makes you “look good”. The worldly focus is upon “Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.” But morality is stagnant, does not grow, and kills. Christianity is the center, the source. It “is good”. True beauty: 1 Corinthians 13:12

12 For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.

Christianity changes us into the same image. 2 Corinthians 3:18

18 But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit.

This baptism of the Holy Spirit is from the LORD and brings growth and life.

Romans 8:2-4

For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death. For what the Law could not do, weak as it was through the flesh, God did: sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and as an offering for sin, He condemned sin in the flesh, so that the requirement of the Law might be fulfilled in us, who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.

Philippians 2:12-13

12 So then, my beloved, just as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your salvation with fear and trembling; 13 for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure.

Jude 1:24 -25

24 Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling, and to make you stand in the presence of His glory blameless with great joy, 25 to the only God our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion and authority, before all time and now and forever. Amen.

 

Pie Anyone? Friday, Jul 20 2018 

The Holy Spirit gave me a big slice of this…no milk, no sweet cherries, just minced meat that went down hard. Sometimes, I’m wrong and I just have to say, “I’m sorry” and hope the Holy Spirit will heal us with it’s serving. He said, “Without this, there is no true repentance.”

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.

My Rescue Monday, Apr 30 2018 

From my morning bible study today. I had done my P.A.R.T (Praise,
Admit, Request, Thanksgiving) and was beginning my L.M.N.O.P. (Listen, Messages, New Testament, Old Testament, Proverbs when….

Early in the wee hours of the morning, while I was listening for the voice of the LORD, the scales were removed from my spiritual eyes and the wax was removed from my spiritual ears. I saw before me as it were a light hovering over my head in a reflection. I saw movement of a corner that radiated from the aura of the light and out of it slipped slowly a black dark orb that slowly rose to the top of the reflection and out of sight. From my mouth I heard praises of God, Almighty repeating, “Blessed is the LORD, my God and my Redeemer.”

 

And again slowly rising from the right lower corner was now a dark grey orb that floated up and then left, out of the reflection.

 

And again I heard from my mouth, “Jesus, name above all names. Only thou art holy. Only thou art good. My King Jesus.”

 

And again slowly rising from the right lower corner was now a royal purple orb that slowly rose up and then right, out of the reflection.

 

And again I heard from my mouth, “Jesus, King of Kings and LORD of lords, Blessed be the name of the LORD, Jesus.”

 

Then the entire reflection turned the color of royal purple and  pulsated  like a steady heart-beat. And then my own reflection turned a neon purple and I heard from my mouth, “Jesus, thank-you, LORD. Thank-you, Jesus.”

 

The verse came to mind, “I am the light of the world.” and another, “I take away the sins of the world.” So, I sensed within that the orbs leaving were confessed sins. And another verse came to mind, “As far as the east is from the west have I removed your transgressions from you.” And another verse, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”

 

The light was still shining over my head in the reflection. I saw myself just sitting there. I looked down at my bible and read again the Psalm for the day, Psalms 34:7 The angel of the LORD encamps around those who fear Him, and rescues them.

My Bible Sunday, Jan 28 2018 

The verse we are going to be addressing this morning may be found in the book of Hebrews chapter 4 verse 12: 12 For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.

My dear reader, I would like to share with you my relationship with the Holy Bible.

Each day, I share with you a verse or two. Why do I do this? My purpose in sharing scripture with you is to share with you what the Holy Spirit is doing to my thoughts and intents. Perhaps you identify with me in this. Perhaps the Holy Spirit is discerning yours as well. I want to share my journey with you, my experiences, including the lessons I am learning along the way.

So what is my bible to me? Well, first of all the word “Bible” is not even in the bible. An interesting study one can do is to determine which popular sayings are not in the bible. I remember sharing the golden rule in one of my posts and someone said to me, “That’s not in the bible.” If you do not know what is not in it, how can you understand what is in it?

My bible is not just a fire insurance policy.

For some people that’s all it is to them. They look at it on Christmas service and Easter service. The rest of the year it collects dust on a shelf somewhere. I hope that isn’t you.

My bible is not just an inheritance.

For some people that’s all it is to them. They inherited the old book from their mother or father. They know it has the family tree in there somewhere. They glance at it when they are feeling nostalgic or after their parents have passed on because they miss them and they know that they used to read it on occasion.

My bible is my interpreter.

It interprets for me the language of Zion. And oh how I enjoy the conversations I have with God. There are times when I read it that the words jump right off the page at me.

My bible is alive.

One minute I use it as a sword against the devil and the next minute the Holy Spirit is using it on me as a scalpel to remove some error in my mind.

My bible is powerful.

It heals me. Not just physically but emotionally, spiritually and in every way.

My bible reassures me of my place in the Kingdom of God.

By it the Holy Spirit bears witness with my spirit that I am a child of God. I am of the household of God. I am a stone of the temple that God himself inhabits.

 

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