Today’s Scripture Wednesday, Apr 17 2019 

Psalm 103:14

14 For He Himself knows our frame;
He is mindful that we are but dust.


What of Miracles? Saturday, Mar 30 2019 

The Scripture for today may be found in the gospel of John, chapter 5, verse 36:

Witness of Works

36 But the testimony which I have is greater than the testimony of John; for the works which the Father has given Me to accomplish—the very works that I do—testify about Me, that the Father has sent Me.

I would like to dedicate this bible study to my grandson, Joey who at this writing is now 5 years old.

Today, we are going to talk about the importance of a right attitude.

Jesus has a greater witness than that of John the Baptist. Remember how in times past I read to you the story of John the Baptist who baptized Jesus at the Jordan river? Do you remember who Jesus is and what He is?

The New Testament is all about Him. He is more important than His teaching. He is more than just a great teacher or a great man. Jesus claimed that He was the Son of God and did what His Father told Him to do.

His works were told throughout the gospels. He worked miracles, He taught, He live a sinless life, He died on the cross, He rose from the dead.

Consider His miracles: John 10: 24 The Jews then gathered around Him, and were saying to Him, “How long will You keep us in suspense? If You are the Christ, tell us plainly.” 25 Jesus answered them, “I told you, and you do not believe; the works that I do in My Father’s name, these testify of Me.

Luke 7: 20 When the men came to Him, they said, “John the Baptist has sent us to You, to ask, ‘Are You the Expected One, or do we look for someone else?’” 21 At that very time He cured many people of diseases and afflictions and evil spirits; and He gave sight to many who were blind. 22 And He answered and said to them, “Go and report to John what you have seen and heard: the blind receive sight, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, and the deaf hear, the dead are raised up, the poor have the gospel preached to them.

Acts 2:
22 “Men of Israel, listen to these words: Jesus the Nazarene, a man attested to you by God with miracles and wonders and signs which God performed through Him in your midst, just as you yourselves know—

Hebrews 2: how will we escape if we neglect so great a salvation? After it was at the first spoken through the Lord, it was confirmed to us by those who heard, God also testifying with them, both by signs and wonders and by various miracles and by gifts of the Holy Spirit according to His own will.

His miracles prove who He was and why He came. Miracles are not the result of secondary causes. Miracles are not produced from natural causes. Miracles are instantaneous. Miracles do happen.

If you say they don’t happen, you are not up to date. They used to say the atom was inert but they didn’t know about nuclear power. The atom is not inert but dynamic, teaming with activity.

Jesus turned the water into wine without grapes, without time. He fed the 5,000 by multiplying 2 fishes and 5 loaves without fishing, without baking, without time.

What folly to think we know better than God.

Remember the story I told you of Nicodemus?

John 3: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.”

Sign and wonders are the same as miracles.

Remember that Jesus said:

John 10: 37″If I do not do the works of My Father, do not believe Me; 38 but if I do them, though you do not believe Me, believe the works, so that you may know and understand that the Father is in Me, and I in the Father.”

Apostles did miracles in the name of Jesus. Jesus did miracles in His own name. He raised up Lazarus. He is the giver of life.

Jesus prayed for us in John 17

John 17: I glorified You on the earth, having accomplished the work which You have given Me to do. Now, Father, glorify Me together with Yourself, with the glory which I had with You before the world was.

John 17:20 “I do not ask on behalf of these alone, but for those also who believe in Me through their word; 21 that they may all be one; even as You, Father, are in Me and I in You, that they also may be in Us, so that the world may believe that You sent Me.

My prayer for you is that you would believe in Jesus and in miracles and that the evidence is true.

Brilliant Friday, Mar 29 2019 

The Scripture for today begins in the Gospel of John, chapter 5, verses 31-35:

31 “If I alone testify about Myself, My testimony is not true. 32 There is another who testifies of Me, and I know that the testimony which He gives about Me is true.

Witness of John

33 You have sent to John, and he has testified to the truth. 34 But the testimony which I receive is not from man, but I say these things so that you may be saved. 35 He was the lamp that was burning and was shining and you were willing to rejoice for a while in his light.

I would like to dedicate this bible study to my grandson, Logan, who at this writing is six years old.

Let us begin specifically with verse 35:
“He was the lamp that was burning and was shining and you were willing to rejoice for a while in his light. “

Now in the King James Version it says “for a season” instead of “for a while”. I like that so much better since we have just started into a new season of spring and all around us are the signs of “life”, green bursting forth everywhere.

Soon everyone will be out enjoying the spring air. Nature holds so many joyous sights and sounds.

Our story begins with a man named “John the Baptist”. He was a man who lived in the days of our Lord, Jesus Christ. And in those days, it had been over 400 years since the prophets of God had spoken to the people of Israel.

When the people of Israel heard about John the Baptist, they were very eager to go and see him and to hear what he had to say. They had heard that he wore a camel hair shirt, and ate only wild locusts and honey. So they went to see him and to hear what he had to say. There was a certain general appeal and they wanted to be a part of what everybody was talking about. It is kind of like nowadays when there are fads that come along and everybody tries them out. But alas, they soon turn away. The “newness” wears off, they get bored with it all, and move on to the next “new thing.”

Ezekiel foretold about this in Chapter 33, verses 31-33:

30 “But as for you, son of man, your fellow citizens who talk about you by the walls and in the doorways of the houses, speak to one another, each to his brother, saying, ‘Come now and hear what the message is which comes forth from the Lord.’ 31 They come to you as people come, and sit before you as My people and hear your words, but they do not do them, for they do the lustful desires expressed by their mouth, and their heart goes after their gain. 32 Behold, you are to them like a sensual song by one who has a beautiful voice and plays well on an instrument; for they hear your words but they do not practice them. 33 So when it comes to pass—as surely it will—then they will know that a prophet has been in their midst.”

It is the very same with Jesus. Many fell away from him when His truth became difficult to understand.

John 6:60 60 Therefore many of His disciples, when they heard this said, “This is a difficult statement; who can listen to it?”

John 6:66-69 66 As a result of this many of His disciples withdrew and were not walking with Him anymore. 67 So Jesus said to the twelve, “You do not want to go away also, do you?” 68 Simon Peter answered Him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have words of eternal life. 69 We have believed and have come to know that You are the Holy One of God.”

This is a common thing with religion. People tend to follow for awhile, but then for many reasons, they fall away. They get drawn to anything and everything that they think will give them answers to their problems in life. But the minute they find that what they wanted isn’t there they move on and try the next one. Some people come to Christ because they want to be part of a happy crowd and they see people in church singing and rejoicing. But the minute they are asked to help out they flee. Because you see, they are in it for themselves. They are compelled by what is called the “crowd mentality.”

They think to themselves, “Surely this must be good, look how many people are here.”

But when John the Baptist said, “Repent and be baptized”, they rejected him.

When Jesus said, “You must be born again”, they rejected him.

These messages weren’t what they wanted to hear. They were looking for worldly answers, something political or military perhaps. The same people who laid down palm branches on Palm Sunday, later yelled, “crucify Him!”

They became an angry mob.

Even at the cross they asked Him, “If you are the Son of God, come down from the cross.”

But you see in order to be saved persistence is a necessity. Repentance is a necessity. We must “follow Him” though the whole world turn against us.

My prayer for you is that you never fall away.

Unabridged Christianity Tuesday, Jan 15 2019 

Heavenly Things

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.

We are continuing with this review of the key theme which is found at the beginning of this gospel in John 1:16
16 For of His fullness we have all received, and grace upon grace.

We should all realize what a Christian is meant to be in this life.

We have been analyzing ourselves to determine if we do indeed have this life in us and if we have received of His fullness. We must guard against the problem of allowing our intellect to limit Scripture to our own human understanding.

Do you know that you have received of this fullness?

Because we are not sufficiently child-like, not sufficiently simple, our intellect creeps in and causes problems. Luke 18:15-17 15 And they were bringing even their babies to Him so that He would touch them, but when the disciples saw it, they began rebuking them. 16 But Jesus called for them, saying, “Permit the children to come to Me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. 17 Truly I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child will not enter it at all.”

The whole object of studying the bible is to know Him more and more and for us to realize our own position in Christ, that we might live this Christian life in His fullness.

There are many difficulties that lie in the way of us receiving of His fullness more and more.

Nicodemus was a different type from the others we have studied before because he is a part of the religious elite. He is a ruler, a leader of the Jews and yet he was wrong. Even though he was a master, a teacher in Israel. He was a very able man. He was a great man in many ways. He was free from prejudices. He didn’t come to Jesus asking for “signs” or questioning his “authority.” He came to learn of Him, to put forth questions he had about his religion.

Nicodemus knew that Jesus was sent from God. He saw the real meaning of the miracles Jesus did. He addresses Jesus as Rabbi even though Jesus is just a carpenter. He assents to His position. He knows that Jesus was sent from God. But He is feeling convicted by the fact that Jesus obviously has something that he lacks and he comes seeking to know what it is that makes Him different. He wasn’t self-satisfied like the other Pharisees.

Are you self-satisfied? Do you hunger and thirst after righteousness? Is there a longing to know Him more and more?

There is no hope in the Christian life if we are not aware of our need for Him. Are we always comparing ourselves to others in the world and thanking God we are not like them? Or are we humble like Nicodemus and come looking at the perfection of God and seeing our own unworthiness?

The truth is Nicodemus didn’t see Jesus as LORD. That was his great mistake. He saw Him more as an equal not as a Savior. He called Him Rabbi or teacher. He too was a teacher.

Matthew 5:3
“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”

Nicodemus is a very wise man and he acts on what he feels. Do we follow through seeking truth when we’ve been convicted? Matthew 7:7-8 “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened.”

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 Friday, Jan 11 2019 

A Spirit of Bondage

John 3:8
The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.

What makes a person a Christian is their miraculous rebirth. We must not forget they that worship Him must worship Him in Spirit and in truth.

We have been studying the peculiar difficulties of understanding the differences between a religious man and a Christian.

One of the snares the devil employs so frequently is to make a religious man think he is a Christian when he has never been born again. In order to enter the kingdom of heaven there are two forms of worship required; in Spirit and in truth. A man who has never been born again cannot worship in Spirit because the Spirit is not in him. They may think they have worshiped Him because they’ve gone to church their entire lives, but God is a Spirit.

The enemy of our souls uses religion to delude people into thinking it is a particular building, certain rituals, robes and vestments that determine our condition with God. Religion is external with certain trappings.

A man who has been born of the Spirit has the life of God in his soul. It is an internal thing. He has communion with the Trinity. He knows Him. He knows His presence. He knows what it is to grieve Him. He knows what it feels to be dependent upon Him, to realize his own weakness and utter need for Him. He is aware of His activities within him, promptings, leading, corrections. He also knows the power He can give to do whatever he is called to do: preaching, teaching, service, prayer.

Another vital part of what the Holy Spirit does within those who are born again is assurance of salvation. There are two big things the Holy Spirit does in us; sanctification and assurance. Delivering us from sin gives us assurance, certainty. It is this assurance that gives us joy. The joy of the LORD is our strength.

A religious person can never know assurance.

There is a distinction that is very subtle between assurance and self-satisfaction. Paul explains it in Philippians 3:3-6

For we are the circumcision, which worship God in the spirit, and rejoice in Christ Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh.

Though I might also have confidence in the flesh. If any other man thinketh that he hath whereof he might trust in the flesh, I more:

Circumcised the eighth day, of the stock of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, an Hebrew of the Hebrews; as touching the law, a Pharisee;

Concerning zeal, persecuting the church; touching the righteousness which is in the law, blameless.

A Christian who is born again and filled with the Spirit of the living God receives assurance. In spite of his unworthiness he has been given this free gift from God. John 3:15-17

15 That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.

16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.

It is entirely because of the work of the LORD Jesus Christ. It is dependent on God’s grace.

There is no higher test of the rebirth than this because it cannot be counterfeited.

Assurance shows itself in various ways:

  1. Deliverance from the spirit of bondage and fear. Romans 8:15
    15 For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.
  2. Deliverance from the law. This is the bondage of religion. Romans 6:14
    14 For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace. Romans 8:1-2  There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.
  3. Peace with God Romans 5:1
    5 Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ: Romans 8:7
    Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be.
  4. He has Faith. Romans 4:3b
    Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness.
  5. He has the Spirit of Adoption Galatians 4:6
    And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father.

How do you approach God? Is He your Abba? Your Daddy?

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”?

Joy to the World Sunday, Dec 16 2018 

Joy to the world
Joy to the world, the Lord is come
Let earth receive her King
Let every heart prepare Him room
And Heaven and nature sing
And Heaven and nature sing
And Heaven, and Heaven, and nature sing

Joy to the world
Joy to the World, the Savior reigns!
Let men their songs employ
While fields and floods, rocks, hills and plains
Repeat the sounding joy
Repeat the sounding joy
Repeat, repeat, the sounding joy.

Joy to the world, now we sing
Let the earth receive her king
Joy to the world, now we sing
Let the angel voices ring
Joy to the world, now we sing
Let men their songs employ
Joy to the world, now we sing
Repeat the sounding joy

Oh oh
He rules the world with truth and grace
And makes the nations prove
The light of His righteousness
And wonders of His love
And wonders of His love
And wonders of His love
And wonders, wonders, of His love
And wonders, wonders, of His love.

Joy to the world, now we sing
Let the earth receive her king
Joy to the world, now we sing
Let the angel voices ring.

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.

My Fig Tree Tuesday, Dec 11 2018 

The scripture for today may be found in the book of John chapter 1 verses 45-49

45 Philip *found Nathanael and *said to him, “We have found Him of whom Moses in the Law and also the Prophets wrote—Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph.” 46 Nathanael said to him, “Can any good thing come out of Nazareth?” Philip *said to him, “Come and see.” 47 Jesus saw Nathanael coming to Him, and *said of him, “Behold, an Israelite indeed, in whom there is no deceit!” 48 Nathanael *said to Him, “How do You know me?” Jesus answered and said to him, “Before Philip called you, when you were under the fig tree, I saw you.” 49 Nathanael answered Him, “Rabbi, You are the Son of God; You are the King of Israel.”

Notice how Jesus greets Nathaniel: “Behold, an Israelite indeed, in whom there is no deceit!”

Straight away, He announces his position, i.e. Israelite or one of God’s chosen people. And he also announces his character: “in whom there is no deceit!” The King James version says, “no guile!” We know from this record in scripture than Nathaniel was sincere.

Psalm 51:6
Behold, You desire truth in the [a]innermost being,
And in the hidden part You will make me know wisdom.

Psalm 86:11
11 Teach me Your way, O Lord;
I will walk in Your truth;
Unite my heart to fear Your name.

There is no purpose in praying or seeking God or trying to receive blessing from Him if you hide in your heart some secret sin. If there is something you continue to do even after the conviction of the Holy Spirit comes to you.

Notice that Nathaniel is concerned about these things. Jesus told him, “I saw you under the fig tree.” What was he doing there? He went there to pray, to study his scriptures, to test himself, to seek God. It was the middle of the week, which was not a time when most men would be doing this. But Nathaniel wanted to “think” so he found a quiet place and alone, or at least he thought he was alone he pondered the deep things of life. This was a central part of his life. It wasn’t just something he did on the day of worship.

We can learn from Nathaniel to take time to be with God, to seek God, to fellowship with Him. Take time to be holy.

Notice how Nathaniel starts out questioning Philip when he is first told about Jesus, “Can anything “GOOD” come out of Nazareth?” Nathaniel knew his scriptures. He knew that the Christ was to be born in Bethlehem, not Nazareth. He straight away questioned Philip in order to test what he was saying against the scriptures.

And we should also test people who come to us and say, “Oh, I had this wonderful experience. Come and see.” You might be led into a cult or complete disaster. Remember we are called to “test the spirits whether they be of God.”

Nathaniel was using his critical thinking. He was not guilty of credulity. He was not gullible of a false teacher. But he was also not guilty of contempt against anything and everything thinking he already knew it all like the Pharisees were. He listened. He went to “see”. He was not governed by prejudice. But he knew that everything must be brought to the bar of the scripture.

Now look at Jesus’ response to Nathaniel, “I saw you under the fig tree.”

Imagine Nathaniel’s shock.

The lesson here is the our names were written in the Lamb’s book of life before the creation of the world. He knows all about you. He knows your seeking, He knows your heartbreak.

Jesus said to Paul, “Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me. It is hard to kick against the pricks.” He knew his heart. He knew his motives. He knew his destiny.

Jesus is like the father of the prodigal son. He runs to meet us. He will take you by the hand and lead you on.

What is your greatest desire above everything else? Do you have a fig tree? Do you know that you are known of Him?

1 Corinthians 8:3
but if anyone loves God, he is known by Him.

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.

Galatians 4:9
But now that you have come to know God, or rather to be known by God, how is it that you turn back again to the weak and worthless [a]elemental things, to which you desire to be enslaved all over again?

Do you know that He loves you? Do you know that He is dealing with you?

Philippians 1:6-11

For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus. 7 [a]For it is only right for me to feel this way about you all, because I have you in my heart, since both in my [b]imprisonment and in the defense and confirmation of the gospel, you all are partakers of grace with me. For God is my witness, how I long for you all with the [c]affection of Christ Jesus. And this I pray, that your love may abound still more and more in real knowledge and all discernment, 10 so that you may [d]approve the things that are excellent, in order to be sincere and blameless [e]until the day of Christ; 11 having been filled with the fruit of righteousness which comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.

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