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.

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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.


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 Priorities Friday, May 4 2018 

Have you ever wondered how many millions of times The Lord’s Prayer has been prayed? It came upon me just this morning as I was finishing up today’s bible study and prayer time.

Has God ever answered that prayer? I was specifically thinking of that request: “Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done, on Earth as it is in Heaven.” Oh how I wished in my quiet hour that prayer could be answered.

Then, I had to ask myself, “am I praying with expectation of an answer?” Perhaps, I should be living it out myself. I had to evaluate my priorities. What should be my number one priority in this earthly life? Thinking it through the verse Ephesians 5:5 came to mind: “For this you know with certainty, that no [e]immoral or impure person or covetous man, who is an idolater, has an inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God.”

And also the greatest commandment in Matthew 22:36-40:

36 “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?” 37 And He said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the great and [a]foremost commandment. 39 The second is like it, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 On these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets.”

And also 1 Peter 1:16 16 Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.

Christians are called to be saints. Saints are holy.

Some will argue and say, “How can any man be holy?” or “Aren’t you just trying to return everybody to works instead of grace?”

Be careful that you are not being deceived by partial truth. Christianity is a process. It is made up of steps. We are first washed, justified, regenerated, separated, sanctified, made holy, and made perfect.

How do you respond to these scriptures? Are you uncomfortable? Or are you in agreement? How can you test yourself? Look to 1 John 3:3 : And everyone who has this hope fixed on Him purifies himself, just as He is pure.

 

 

Fear Not Friday, Apr 20 2018 

A ghostly shadow hovered across the way,

Barely visible without the light of day.

It seemed to have a will all its’ own,

As it stopped among the bushes overgrown.

I kept my eye a fixed upon its’ state;

And awaited, bated breath, for it to fade.

My stare became a glare upon the bog.

I could barely sense it’s shape among the fog.

It must have sensed me staring through the night,

As it dared not move a muscle in my sight.

So solemn, still, foreboding…

I thought I saw it growing!

The ghastly thing gave me such a fright!

I prayed aloud to God in utter fear.

And Jesus reassured me He was near.

 

By

Jessica May Moore

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 3 Saturday, Jan 27 2018 

Today’s verses come from the longest chapter in the entire bible: Psalm 119 verses 104-106:

04 Through thy precepts I get understanding: therefore I hate every false way.

105 Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.

106 I have sworn, and I will perform it, that I will keep thy righteous judgments.

In the third dream, I found myself walking through a dense thicket. As I was walking pushing aside all of the branches I looked down and I saw that I had a flashlights strapped to the of bottoms my feet. As I looked ahead, I could see into the distance. It was getting darker and darker as I walked along because I was getting deeper and deeper into the woods and because it was dusk.

The meaning of the dream can be found in the verses above and also in Matthew 10:27

27 What I tell you in darkness, that speak ye in light: and what ye hear in the ear, that preach ye upon the housetops.

I believe that God teaches us in the night i.e. darkness what he wants us to speak, and teach, and preach. I think the dense thicket can represent our initial understanding of the Word. We may not fully understand it until the Holy Spirit brings His light onto our path. My pushing aside all the branches represents not allowing the things of this world to get in my way of seeking out God and the meaning of His Word. Being able to see into the distance as I looked ahead was like a promise that if I continued on this path of study I would eventually understand the deeper things the Holy Spirit would reveal. The latter part of the day could represent the latter years of my life.

John 14:26 26 But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.

I have found in my experience that He does teach us about the character of God if we are willing to stay in the Word. It is a process that starts with us seeking after God and ending with God grafting the Word into our hearts.

Hebrews 7:25 25 Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever lives to make intercession for them.

 

My Cross Tuesday, Jan 23 2018 

The verse to which I would like to draw your attention today is found in the book of Matthew in the 16th Chapter verse 24: 24 Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.

Many of you won’t like what I am about to say.

The reason you won’t like it is because we’ve been raised in the “me” generation. I’m not excluding myself here. I’ve always been a bit leery of this “cross” business. The shame of it all. Up on a hill where everybody and his brother could see him bleeding to death in agony. The thought of it is pretty gruesome. I for one always ask, “Why? Why did he have to die like that?”

And now He says to his disciples, which by the way includes you and me if we are Christians, “Take up your cross, and follow me.” Really? I’m playing devil’s advocate here to make a point. What was it that Jesus said just prior to saying what He said in this verse? In the verse just prior to this one it says: 23 But he turned, and said unto Peter, Get thee behind me, Satan: thou art an offence unto me: for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but those that be of men.

Boy isn’t that the crux of it all.

It seems to me that when we try to be a people pleaser the enemy uses that to lead us right into failure. Our motives are all wrong. We do good to be seen of men. We go along with the crowd to be accepted. We deny our faith in public because we don’t want to feel awkward or suffer persecution.

Every single thing we do must be to the glory of God.

No matter how burdensome, painful, unreasonable it may seem at the time. All things work together for good to those who are the called according to His purpose. Remember that some of the things we don’t do bring the greatest glory to God. Don’t answer when you are mocked, harassed, and persecuted. Silence is golden.

No one may ever know about the good God called you to today that you are doing without reward, without acknowledgement, without pay, without personal glory. But God knows and will reward you openly.

Take up your cross and follow Him.

My Father Monday, Jan 22 2018 

The verse today can be found in the book of Ephesians chapter 2 verse 18: 18 For through him we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father.

Have you ever noticed how gentle the Holy Spirit of God is? I’ve pondered it at length. How sweet, how precious, how loving, how kind.

And have you noticed the power of Jesus Christ? His name moves mountains. What ultimate strength! His concern for our salvation is amazing.

I would like to draw your attention to God the Father. Often times our thoughts of Him are filtered through our relationships with our earthly fathers. As children we look up to him, we try to do what he wants in order to please him. But in order for us to fully understand God’s love for us, we must not confine Him to this measure. Our earthly fathers fall far short of Him.

The Lord Jesus Christ introduces us to the Father. He ushers us into the presence of the Father at the point of salvation. Do not stop there. As He is holding your hand and leading you boldly to the throne of grace, notice how He sees the Father. He sees God as omnipotent, omnipresent, omniscient. Yet the word tells us that He thought it not robbery to be equal to God.

Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:

Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God:

But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:

It is natural to want to be like your father. It is supernatural to want to be like Jesus Christ. That desire that comes to every Christian is the essence of the renewed mind.

We ought not shrink away from this mindset. “LET THIS MIND BE IN YOU.”

In us there is the “seed” of eternal life. What is eternal life? To know God:

As thou hast given him power over all flesh, that he should give eternal life to as many as thou hast given him.

And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.

I have glorified thee on the earth: I have finished the work which thou gave me to do.

We are in Christ and “through Him we have access to the Father” by one Spirit, which is God’s Spirit. So our salvation isn’t something we do, it was done at the cross, finished there. It is something God does in us and through us. He does the work. It is not of ourselves. It is the gift of God. I hope you’ll open yours today so that when you look into the eyes of God you will see there Jesus and the Spirit.

 

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