“Believe In Jesus and Love One Another”

23 And this is his commandment: We must believe in the name of his Son, Jesus Christ, and love one another, just as he commanded us. — 1 John 3:23 NLT

1 John 3:18-24 NLT

Believe in Jesus and love one another.  Simple to say, not so simple to do. How can we know that we truly believe in Jesus?  Do we instantly change or do we suddenly feel different?  Or is it a gradual change over the years?  It is some of both, we are instantly saved the moment we believe.  We may not feel any different but salvation is based on knowledge not on feelings or emotions although we may get emotional when it happens.  Salvation is the foundation of Christianity, it is involved in our lifelong process of sanctification and it is the capstone of the completed temple God is building in our bodies.  So, how do we know this process is taking place on a daily basis?   Do we love others more or differently?  Does the grief and sorrow of others affect us more than before?  Is our outlook slowing changing from “what about me?” to “what can I do for Jesus and His Kingdom today?”  Does it break our hearts to know that we have done or said something that hurt Jesus and His Kingdom?  If the answer to all of these questions is “Yes”, then we can be sure that the Holy Spirit is dwelling inside of us accomplishing what God wants in our lives.  If the answers are no or I’m not sure, then perhaps it would not hurt to take another look at the foundation and see if it is solid.

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

Post 05-11-2019

“A Scroll of Remembrance”

16 Then those who feared the Lord spoke with each other, and the Lord listened to what they said. In his presence, a scroll of remembrance was written to record the names of those who feared him and always thought about the honor of his name. — Malachi 3:16 NLT

Malachi 3:13-18 NLT

“and the Lord listened to what they said.

It is both comforting and frightening to understand that God hears every word we say and knows every thought that we think.  It is frightening to think that the King of Kings hears some of the things we say to each other.  Our unkind remarks and thoughts that we have surely displease Him.  They are a sin in His eyes.  We must pray that we never get to the point that our consciences are seared over and we are not convicted of our foolish remarks. We must learn to fear God in the correct way.  The fear that we should have of God is a feeling of respect and reverence that is so deep that it causes us to be in complete awe of Him.  It is comforting to know He hears when we pray and knows our thoughts when we just think a prayer.  Think a prayer?  Yes, we have those times when we don’t verbally pray but, instantly, a thought that serves as a prayer crosses our minds.  It is also comforting to note that God records the names of those who revere Him and always meditate on His name.  It is also comforting that He says nothing about recording our sins, just our names. Thank God for His mercy that He does not give us the punishment we have earned, instead He gives us grace, a gift that we do not deserve.

“The closer I get to the end of my life, it seems the only question that matters, Is the life I am living pleasing to God?” – Ken Gire In “Sacred”

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

Post 02-17-2019

“I Am The Way…..”

12 There is salvation in no one else! God has given no other name under heaven by which we must be saved.” — Acts 4:12 NLT

Acts 4:5-12 NLT

Jesus Christ died on the Cross at Calvary for every single person who has lived, is living and will ever live.  Those who accept that fact as the absolute truth will make it to heaven, those who don’t won’t.  It is a simple, plain message that even a child can understand and accept.  Yet, there are those who refuse to believe it.  They have their own god(s) and become very angry when they hear the name of Jesus.  Why?  Because every time the name of Jesus is heard, those hearing it have to make a decision.  Some will say “Oh, I will decide later” not understanding that this statement is a decision not to accept Him.  They want us to water down the message and allow for other ways to get to heaven. But there is only one way.  “Have you accepted Jesus as the only way into heaven?”  There is no negotiation, the deal has been sealed and everyone comes on the same terms.  The foot of the cross is level ground, everyone comes just as they are and accepts Jesus the same way. The rich, the famous and the powerful must meet Jesus the same way as the poor, the unknown and the common man.  The only way is to go empty-handed, humble and obedient.  It isn’t a man’s plan that can be altered, it is the infallible, immutable plan of God. 

6 Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me.” – John 14:6 NLT

“The closer I get to the end of my life, it seems the only question that matters, Is the life I am living pleasing to God?” – Ken Gire In “Sacred”

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

“Revive Us Again”

26 Then Jesus told her, “I am the Messiah! — John 4:26 NLT

John 4:21-30 NLT

The trip from Judea to Galilee took Jesus through Samaria.  It was a rough journey and Jesus, in His human form, was subject to becoming tired and weary, just as we are.  The Samaritans and the Jews were not on the best of terms and rarely, if ever, spoke to each other.  Yet, Jesus began to talk to this Samaritan woman and tell her things about her past and her present situation. She realized that He was a prophet and began to question Him about the difference in the traditions of how the Samaritans and the Jews worshiped God.   Jesus began to explain these things to her and tells her that was the way things were but those things were changing.  The Samaritan woman says that she knows things will change when the Messiah comes.  It is then that Jesus reveals to her that He is the Messiah for whom she has been waiting.  Jesus uses the words “I AM”.  The same words that God had used when Moses asked God, “who shall I say is sending me?”  Hearing these words, she immediately becomes a missionary and runs to tell the whole town about Jesus.  When Jesus touches us, we have to tell somebody.  Do we still have that burning desire to tell people about Jesus, the Messiah, the great “I AM” or has the fire gone out?  If we no longer have that desire to tell others about Jesus, perhaps it is time to ask God to light the fires again.

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

Post 02-04-2019

“Through It All”

25  “But as for me, I know that my Redeemer lives,  and he will stand upon the earth at last.– Job 19:25 NLT

Job 19:21-27 NLT

Most of us are familiar with  the story of Job and all of the trials and troubles that he endured.  God allowed satan to test Job, taking everything from him, except his wife.   At first, God only allowed satan to take his possessions and his children, but satan was not allowed to touch Job,  After satan’s whining, God allowed him to injure Job’s physical body.  Job complained about the injustice of it all and made some unwise comments about God.  But, through it all, He refused to deny God, even though his wife entreated him to do so.  God uses this time in Job’s life to give Job and us a glimpse into the future.  Job not only understood that he needed a Redeemer but that God would send one.  That Redeemer would not only stand upon the earth in the end times, but Job would be there with him just as you and I will be.  After our bodies have decayed in the grave, we will be resurrected and we will see Him with our own eyes.   God gave Job this glimpse into the future to sustain him through his time of testing.  Those of us living on this side of the cross, after the Resurrection of Jesus, have so much more reason to be encouraged than Job did.  Job could only see the Redeemer in the future, we have the advantage of knowing that the Redeemer has come and is coming again.  We, like Job, must not focus on the things that we can see now, but on those things that are coming that we cannot see now.  Our God is able to bring us through it all.

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

Post 01-24-2019

Changed From the Inside out

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The Spirit of the Lord will come upon you, and you’ll prophesy with them and be changed into a different person. – 1 Samuel 10:6 
 After Moses and Joshua had died, God raised up Judges in Israel.  The Israelis would turn away from God and God would allow the enemies of Israel to be successful in battle against the them  When they wept and repented, God would raise up a judge to deliver them and to govern over them for a time.  Each time this happened, God had someone prepared to be the judge for the next few years.  Samuel was the last of the judges.  This was because the Israelis wanted a king over them, so they would be like the nations around them.  By asking God for an earthly king, they were rejecting God as their king.  Through Samuel, God warned them of the negative things that would happen if they chose an earthly king.  Still, that is what the people wanted and that is what God gave them. He chose Saul to be their king.  Before Saul could take his position as king, God gave him a new heart and filled him with His Spirit. God never chooses any of us to do something for Him and His Kingdom without the proper preparations.  If we are not already prepared, He will prepare us and give us everything we need to do His bidding. When we feel a special call from God, we may very well feel completely unprepared to complete the task.  But, we can be assured that by the time God puts His plan for us into action, He will have prepared us to do the job better than anyone else could possibly do it.  God chooses ordinary people and turns them into His extraordinary servants.  All He wants or expects from us is our willingness and obedience, He will do the rest.
10 For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago. — Eph. 2:10 NLT
“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” – Anonymous
Post 12-03-2018

“Your Grace Has Brought Me Safe Thus Far”

even-smaller-bug-light1

So the men did as Joshua had commanded them. They took twelve stones from the middle of the Jordan River, one for each tribe, just as the Lord had told Joshua. They carried them to the place where they camped for the night and constructed the memorial there. — Joshua 4:8 NLT

Often when a major event had occurred in the lives of the children of Israel, God would instruct them to set up stones or build an altar.  These stones or altars were built or erected as a token of remembrance for God’s help in bringing them safely this far. It was also a reminder to tell future generations about the goodness and the mercies of God. They were unique in that they were always built with natural, uncut stones.  Crossing the Jordan into the Promised Land for the first time was a once-in-a-lifetime major event. The Israelis put twelve stones in the middle of the Jordan to mark the spot of the crossing and carried twelve stones to Gilgal and erected them there to mark the spot of their first encampment in their new homeland.  We need to be aware of the major events in our lives and construct mental and/or physical landmarks as a way to remember these events.  We need to point out these times to our future generations as a remembrance of what God has done for us.  When Samuel erected the stone between Mizpah and Jeshanah (1 Samuel 7:12) to mark the spot where God had defeated the Philistines for the Israelis, he named it “Ebenezer” which means a stone of help.  It is by the help of God that we have come this far safely.  Let us stop, set up an Ebenezer, pray, worship and celebrate God’s goodness and mercies in our lives.

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

Post 11-12-2018