“Worship In Spirit and In Truth”

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23 But the time is coming—indeed it’s here now—when true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and in truth. The Father is looking for those who will worship him that way. 24 For God is Spirit, so those who worship him must worship in spirit and in truth.” – John 4:23-24 NLT

Our worship of our Lord and Savior should not be limited to a Sunday morning experience.  If that is all the time we spend at the feet of Jesus, then we need to examine our hearts and ask if that is truly worship.  Worship is defined as showing reverence and adoration for a deity.  If we take a look at our calendars and our checkbooks, we might be surprised to see who we really worship.  If we truly adore someone, it is only natural that we would want to spend more time in their presence.  We would be waiting to hear their voice and we would hang onto every word that they had to say.  When we had to leave their presence, we would be watching and waiting for opportunities to tell others what this great person had said.  We would make time to be with them and to let them know how much we adored them.  Our hearts would beat faster at the very thought of being in their presence.  If it were possible to live without ever being away from their presence, we would spend all of our time there.  This person would have to be the center of our world and deserve to have our highest loyalty.  This person would be someone that we would never hurt or betray for anyone or anything. This person’s name would be in our hearts, on our minds and on the tip of our tongues all day long, every day. This person would be someone that we worshiped in Spirit and in truth once a week, all week long.  Let each of us examine our thoughts, our words, our actions and our lifestyles and honestly determine who we worship.  If the answer isn’t  Jesus, and Jesus alone, then we need to take some time to ask His forgiveness and change our habits so that we mirror His glory.

18 Praise the Lord God, the God of Israel, who alone does such wonderful things. 19 Praise his glorious name forever!  Let the whole earth be filled with his glory.
Amen and amen!  ​ — Psalm 72:18-19 NLT​


“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” – Anonymous

“We Wither and Fall”

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6  We are all infected and impure with sin.  When we display our righteous deeds, they are nothing but filthy rags. Like autumn leaves, we wither and fall, and our sins sweep us away like the wind. 7  Yet no one calls on your name or pleads with you for mercy. Therefore, you have turned away from us and turned us over to  our sins. — Isaiah 64:6-7 NLT

We were born in sin into a sinful world and as long as we live in this flesh, we will be affected by sin.  In the flesh, we can do good deeds, but those good deeds will not get us into heaven.  We can wash and clean the exterior but only the righteousness of Jesus Christ can cleanse the inside.  Doing good deeds without Godly direction can be compared to painting a wooden house without repairing the rotten areas.  It looks good to the world but soon the house will fall.  When we look at our nation, there are still a lot of good things that we can observe but there are fewer and fewer God things.  We have been blessed abundantly for so long that we have become comfortable and complacent in who we are.  To worship means to honor and to honor requires obedience.  When we aren’t obedient to God, we are putting ourselves in His place and trying to do His job.  When we put other things above God and his commands, He cannot be Lord of our lives.  Our God is a jealous God, He will be Lord of all or He will not be Lord at all.  He has not and will not change.  He does not negotiate or bargain with us.  But when we come to the end of the rope, if we reach out for His hand, He is always there to take our hand and carry us to safety.  Let us examine our positions and agree with God.  When we do, we will fall on our faces and plead for His forgiveness and mercy.

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” – Anonymous

“They Have Abandoned Me”

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12  The heavens are shocked at such a thing and shrink back in horror and dismay,” says the Lord.  13  “For my people have done two evil things:  They have abandoned me — the fountain of living water.  And they have dug for themselves cracked cisterns that can hold no water at all! — Jeremiah 2:12-13 NLT

We look around us and see all the violence, evil and chaos and we wonder why?  Why is this great nation that God has so abundantly blessed  for over two hundred years in such disarray? Could it be that we, as a nation, have “abandoned the fountain of living water”?  We, like King Solomon have gone out over all the earth looking for pleasures and “new” things only to find that every earthly thing is really meaningless.  Solomon, the wisest man in the world “set out to learn everything from wisdom to madness and folly”.  His discovery was that greater wisdom brings greater grief and more knowledge brought more sorrows.   He learned that nothing was really new, it only seemed new because we did not learn from history and that there is little hope that future generations will learn from  our mistakes.  In the end, Solomon found that  it is best to “accept the way God made things for who can straighten what He has made crooked?”   Let us be wise and learn from Solomon’s misadventures.  Anything we do on earth that does not advance the kingdom of God is like pouring water into a broken bowl or putting our money into pockets that have holes in them.  All of those efforts will net us nothing in eternity.  Instead of spending our time and money seeking earthly pleasures and adventures, let us do the works of the Father which will make us rich in rewards in eternity.​

19 “Don’t store up treasures here on earth, where moths eat them and rust destroys them, and where thieves break in and steal. 20 Store your treasures in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy, and thieves do not break in and steal. 21 Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be. ​ — Matt.6:19-21 NLT​

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” – Anonymous

“If You Are Willing”

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42 “Father, if you are willing, please take this cup of suffering away from me. Yet I want your will to be done, not mine.” 43 Then an angel from heaven appeared and strengthened him. — Luke 22:42-43 NLT

As we read about all the miracles that Jesus performed while He was here on earth we sometimes forget and need to be reminded that He, like us, was fully human.  He did all of His works as a man, not as God.  He even told us that He could do nothing in and of Himself but that He could only do the works of the Father.(John 5:19).  We are told by the writer of Hebrews that even though Jesus was the Son of God, He still offered prayers and pleadings to the One who could rescue Him from death (Hebrews 5:8).  Jesus knew and understood His mission because He had been in on the planning session that occurred before the foundations of the earth were laid. But in the flesh, He was not looking forward to the experience of being separated from His Father for the first and only time in His life.  Separated because when He took our sins upon Himself, the Father could not look at Him or comfort Him in any way.  While Jesus was in the flesh as a man, God sent Moses and Elijah to talk with Him about His death on the Cross (Mount of Transfiguration, Luke 9:31).  As Jesus prayed in the Garden of Gethsemane, God sent an angel to strengthen Him.  What we need to realize is that God does the same thing for us.  If we listen carefully and heed His words, we will find that there is nothing that happens to us that He has not carefully prepared us to bear. Jesus lived every day knowing the cruel death that awaited Him on the cross.  Yet, He set His face toward Jerusalem and never turned back. Do we live every day prepared to die for what we know is true?  If we do, then we can die prepared to live forever and that knowledge should remove any fear of death that we have.

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” – Anonymous

“The Gift God Has For You”

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10 Jesus replied, “If you only knew the gift God has for you and who you are speaking to, you would ask me, and I would give you living water.”11 “But sir, you don’t have a rope or a bucket,” she said, “and this well is very deep. Where would you get this living water? — John 4:10-11 NLT

This Samaritan woman had gone through five husbands and was now living with a man that was not her husband and she still had not found the peace and the happiness for which she was looking.  How many of us have chased after what the world calls happiness and found it to be emptiness?  We turn to the world looking for something to fill that emptiness and that void in our hearts.  The pleasures and happiness brought by a new possession or a new experience turn out to be short-lived.  All the fads and the “new” things promising eternal joy turn out to be nothing more than smoke and mirrors.  The devil tells us you just need a little more of this or a little more of that.  Happiness is just around the corner, he promises, and we continue the chase.  And it will always be a chase, because what we are looking for and what we really need can not be bought.  It has already been purchased lock, stock and barrel by Jesus at the Cross and it isn’t for sale.  He owns the whole supply and it is given freely to those who give up the worldly chase and turn to Him for forgiveness.  Stop running and chasing every new thing.  Sit at the feet of Jesus and drink in the living water.  Don’t take a little sip and leave, grab the bucket and pour the water on your head. Immerse yourself in His Word and peace and joy from a never ending stream will flow through your mind and body continuously.  Get under and stay “under the spout where the glory comes out”.  That is anywhere the unadulterated Word of God is preached and taught.  Find a place where you can immerse yourself in God’s Word every day and joy and peace will chase after and overcome you.

165 Those who love Your law have an abundance of peace, and nothing along their paths can cause them to stumble. — Psalm 119:165 The Voice

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” – Anonymous

“Heavenly Bodies”

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3 For we will put on heavenly bodies; we will not be spirits without bodies. 4 While we live in these earthly bodies, we groan and sigh, but it’s not that we want to die and get rid of these bodies that clothe us. Rather, we want to put on our new bodies so that these dying bodies will be swallowed up by life. 5 God himself has prepared us for this, and as a guarantee he has given us his Holy Spirit.— 2 Cor. 5:3-5 NLT

When God first made man in His image, He looked at what He had made and said “it is very good” (Gen 1:31). Decay and death were not known at this time.  Then sin came into the world and things were no longer “very good”.  Our bodies, along with all creation, started to deteriorate and eventually die.  Jesus came into the world as a man to redeem the fallen creation and restore it to the order that had been in the garden.  Jesus brought hope to a dying world. He came that we might be made “new creations”.  Newness requires that we get rid of the old.  We are saved when we accept Jesus and our Spirits are renewed but we remain in a fleshly body in a sinful world.  The Spirit is being renewed day by day but the flesh is decaying day by day.

16 So we have no reason to despair. Despite the fact that our outer humanity is falling apart and decaying, our inner humanity is breathing in new life every day. — 2 Cor.4:16 The Voice

Our hope, the thing that makes Christianity different from anything else, is that we will one day leave these rotting, fleshly bodies and live in those heavenly bodies that God has created for each of us. Bodies that do not suffer pain and will not decay or die.  God has prepared and continues to prepare us for this transition. We have a guarantee of this that lives inside of us so that we are never alone or without hope. Until the process is complete and Jesus comes again, we live hopefully and joyfully “looking unto Jesus, the author and the finisher of our faith”.

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” – Anonymous

“That They May Have Life”

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10 The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly. — John 10:10 NKJV

When we hear the term abundant, our minds quickly turn to material possessions, position, and money.  Those things have little to do with abundant living in the Biblical sense.  The list of millionaires, actors, and other famous people that have committed suicide in the prime of their lives proves this to be true.  Perhaps, we need to rethink what brings true joy in this present time and in the future.  It needs to be someone or something that is steadfast, true and unchangeable.  It must be someone or something we can have with us all the time.  It must be someone or something that we have instant access to whether we are having a “good” day or a “bad” day. It must be someone or something that is affordable whether we are rich or poor.  God knows that we need money, food and things to make the journey but He also knows that dependence on those things will not bring us joy or peace.  We need friends but they can’t be with us every second of every day.  What we really, really need is to learn to access the shalom kind of peace that Jesus bought for us at Calvary.  If we can’t trust Him for our daily bread, how can we trust Him with our souls for eternity?   Abundant living is an attitude of the heart.  You can’t buy it with all the money in the world, a friend can’t give it to you, a doctor might prescribe it but the pharmacy can’t fulfill the prescription.  It only comes when we learn the lesson that Paul learned,  “not that I was ever in need”.

11 Not that I was ever in need, for I have learned how to be content with whatever I have. 12 I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little. 13 For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength. — Phil. 4:11-13 NLT

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” – Anonymous

“If Your Presence Does Not Go With Us”

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15 Then Moses told the Lord, “If your presence does not go with us, don’t bring us up from here. – Exodus 33:15 ISV


Exodus 33:14-16 ISV


Oh, to be more like Moses, to come to the full realization that the only thing that makes a Christian different from the world is the presence of God in our lives. Without God, we are nothing and can accomplish nothing of eternal value, with God, we can do all things. Moses refused to rush ahead, even refused to move unless he could be sure the presence of God was with Him.  A great lesson that we need to learn to survive in this hectic, chaotic society based on instant gratification.  We need to learn to wait on God.  Not wait as in sitting in our easy chair, but wait as a military guard waits at his post.  Wait with purpose and vigilance, defending our post from intruders.  A guard is well-trained to defend the home front and to protect those at his position. He has read the manual more than once, knows who and what to look for and what questions to ask. Are we prepared?  Have we read our manual? Do we know the enemy?  Are we prepared to defend our faith?  Can we explain to others why our God is the only true and living God and why the name of Jesus is the only name in heaven and on earth by which a man can be saved?   The Holy Spirit, through Paul, charges us to always be ready to give an answer.

1 I solemnly urge you in the presence of God and Christ Jesus, who will someday judge the living and the dead when he comes to set up his Kingdom: 2 Preach the word of God. Be prepared, whether the time is favorable or not. Patiently correct, rebuke, and encourage your people with good teaching. — 2 Timothy 4:1-2 NLT

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” – Anonymous

“Wisdom, Understanding, Knowledge

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3 and I’ve filled him with the Spirit of God, with wisdom, understanding, knowledge, and all kinds of craftsmanship – Exodus 31:3 ISV

Exodus 31:1-6 ISV

Not only did God choose these specific men to make all the things needed to fulfill the laws of worshiping Him, but He gave each a special skill.  God is still doing the same thing with those He has chosen.  He has called each one of us and filled us with the Holy Spirit.  Not to sit on the sidelines but to accomplish a specific task for His glory.  If we are unwilling to do that task, whether it be cleaning the bathrooms or preaching the sermon, then the worship service is incomplete.  Most of our sins are those of omission rather than commission.  Our choices of what we do and/or don’t do and the attitude with which we do them preaches a message that is louder than words. That message is seen and heard by everyone we pass by each day.  Does our message draw people closer to Jesus or does it leave them wondering if they even want to be a part of His Kingdom? As we go along life’s journey, are we more like the priest, the temple assistant or the good Samaritan?  Do we soothe and bandage wounds or do we cross the street rather than taking the time and effort to help those who are hurting? (Parable of the good Samaritan- Luke 10:30-37)

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” – Anonymous

“Create In Me A Clean Heart”

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10  Create in me a clean heart, O God,And renew a steadfast spirit within me. — Psalm 51:10 NKJV

What is a clean heart, how do we get it and why is it important to be sure that we have clean hearts?  An unclean heart is a heart that contains bitterness, hatred, deceit, lust, envy, covetousness and the list goes on and on to include anything that would cause us to sin.  The opposite of that would be a heart that contains only love. It is impossible for us to clean our hearts.  We need the Holy Spirit, who is love, to do that for us.  We can make all the resolutions and follow all the self-help programs we can find, but in the end, without the Holy Spirit, we will still have unclean hearts.  Those programs may remove the filth from the heart but they will leave it empty.  An empty heart is what the evil spirits are searching for.

24 “When an evil spirit leaves a person, it goes into the desert, searching for rest. But when it finds none, it says, ‘I will return to the person I came from.’ 25 So it returns and finds that its former home is all swept and in order. 26 Then the spirit finds seven other spirits more evil than itself, and they all enter the person and live there. And so that person is worse off than before.”– Luke 11:24-26 NLT

Our hearts must be filled with love and that only comes from the Holy Spirit. Once we accept Jesus and His Spirit abides within us, He will keep our hearts clean, if we allow Him to do so.  Clean hearts are necessary because it is “out of the abundance of the heart that the mouth speaks”.  It is also where our thoughts come from, so we must be sure that the source is clean or our thoughts, words and actions will be displeasing to God. 

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” – Anonymous