“Love Your Enemies”

44 But I say, love your enemies! Pray for those who persecute you! — Matt.5:44 NLT

Matt. 5:43-48 NLT

Jesus is the difference-maker.  Not just the fact that He is the only person ever resurrected to eternal life but in the way we think and live.  In every aspect of life, His view was diametrically opposed to the views of the world and of the flesh.  The law said to love your neighbor and hate your enemy. Jesus said to not only love our enemies but to show that love by praying for them.  How often do we fervently pray for our families, friends and neighbors, much less our enemies?  But I don’t have any enemies, you say. Even here, Jesus has a different view.  If the world and those that hold worldly views are not our enemies, then they are our friends and that makes us an enemy of God.  James 4: 4-7 NLT  The Holy Spirit that God has placed inside us does not agree with sin in any way.  Those around us that would tempt us to disobey God are our Spiritual enemies.  If we can’t resist the temptations they offer, they will lead us into destruction, That sounds like an enemy to me.  We must pray for them fervently and continuously and for ourselves to have the Spiritual strength to resist the devil, humble ourselves before God and accept His definition of sin and the enemy.

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

Post 05-09-2019

Pray! Praise! Rejoice!

1 Come, let us sing to the Lord!  Let us shout joyfully to the Rock of our salvation — Psalm 95:1 NLT 

Psalm 95:1-7 NLT

Have you ever been reading the Bible or praying or just spending some down time with Jesus and suddenly a song of joy and praise comes to your mind and without a thought, you just burst into song?  The purpose of the Scriptures, after salvation, is to teach us about the great mercy, love and care that God has for us.  I believe there are certain Scriptures that the Holy Spirit included for the sole purpose of bringing us great moments of joy.  Joy that overflows our hearts and bursts forth into praises for what God has done for us.  The next time satan has us on the run and we feel the weight of the world on our shoulders instead of having a pity party, let’s commit to finding some of these verses and let them come alive in our hearts and minds.  In fact, why don’t we memorize a few of them just so we can quote them to the old liar.  That’s what Jesus did.  God does not want us to be miserable one second of our lives.  He has given us freedom to choose to be joyous but we have to reach out and access the joy and peace that He offers.  For me, nothing can dispel darkness, gloom and doom as quickly and effectively as a few good verses and a couple of praise songs.  Put some in your memory arsenal and fire away

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

Post 04-11-2019

Using Our Resources for Kingdom Work

19 And this same God who takes care of me will supply all your needs from his glorious riches, which have been given to us in Christ Jesus. — Philippians 4:19 NLT

 Philippians 4:13-20 NLT

This  is one of those verses that just about everyone knows even if they have very limited familiarity with the Bible.  We need to ask ourselves if we truly believe this verse. How many of us have ever really experienced an unfulfilled need in our lives?  If we don’t count the days that we fast or the times we missed a meal because we chose to, have we ever had a day when we didn’t have three meals or at least have the opportunity to have three meals?  Most of us could probably go ten days or more without wearing any of our clothes twice.  If we are honest, the large majority of those reading this have never experienced a true “need” in our lives.  The truth is that we in the United States could probably clothe most  of the needy in our land by giving away the clothes we don’t need or wear.  We could feed families on the food we throw away.  When we pray that God will feed the hungry and clothe the needy, do we ever consider that He might be saying to us, “I have but you haven’t passed it on to them yet”?  Maybe God has chosen not to give us any more until we use what we have got for His honor and glory by helping others.

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

Post 04-05-2019

“No Other Name”

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;8-13 NLT

This verse is probably one of the best known verses in the Bible.  It may be very well-known but we had best not get complacent about it.  Do we believe what this verse says?  Is there really only one Name under heaven whereby we can be saved?  Would you stake your life on it?  In today’s society with its anti-Christian bent, we had better be sure we believe it if we are going to stand up for Jesus because there are thousands of our brothers and sisters around the world who are doing just that–giving their lives for Jesus.  If we believe then why do we get so mealy-mouthed around the religious people of the world? There is not one religion that makes this claim, only Christianity. Our beliefs had better be rooted in Jesus and our lives built on Him.  Otherwise, when the storms come and the winds of doubt and fear start beating us up, we will fall.  If you read the full passage above, then you will know that verse thirteen says that the council of leaders knew that Peter and John “had been with Jesus”.  Isn’t  that what we want others to see in us?  Enough of the likeness of Jesus that they will know that we have spent some time with Jesus.  Jesus died for all sinners, we owe it to Him to let the whole world know.  Are we ready to stand up, speak up and die if we have to?  Let us all pray that if that time comes in our lives that we will be ready to meet the challenge and joyfully go home to be with Jesus.

“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 03-01-2019

Feed the Spirit Man

34 Then Jesus explained: “My nourishment comes from doing the will of God, who sent me, and from finishing his work. — John 4:34 NLT


John 4:31-36 NLT

The disciples knew that Jesus had been tired and weary because of the journey from Judea, so they were encouraging Him to eat physical food.  Jesus tells them that He has a food that they know nothing about. They don’t understand that He is referring to a Spiritual food that refreshes Him more than physical or natural food ever could.  It was hard for them and it is hard for us to understand that Jesus could become so involved in doing God’s work that nothing else matters.  The work of the Father was His very life and His sustenance.  Natural food has to be taken and eaten to give us refreshment and life, but Spiritual food must be given away to have the same effect on the giver and the receiver.  In the natural order of things, we have to plow, sow and wait to reap and eat the food and the fields can only be harvested at certain times of the year.  In the Kingdom of God, the spiritual food is always available with us doing no work to receive it. The fields are always white and ready for harvest.  Let each of us pray that the work of God becomes more important than food and water in our lives.  What good is there in sustaining the natural if the spiritual dies?  We can eat all the Spiritual food we can get.  It will fill us with Life but we should never be satisfied.

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

Post 01-06-2019

Our Part Is To Pray, Praise, and Stand!

even-smaller-bug-light1

23 But David said, “No, my brothers! Don’t be selfish with what the Lord has given us. He has kept us safe and helped us defeat the band of raiders that attacked us. 24 Who will listen when you talk like this? We share and share alike—those who go to battle and those who guard the equipment.” — 1 Samuel 30:23, 24 NLT

All of us are spiritual warriors and we live in a spiritual war zone.  Some of us go to other lands to carry on the battle and this is important.  But just as important are those who stay behind and guard the “stuff”.  In our case, the “stuff” is carrying on services in local churches, teaching Sunday School classes and witnessing to those around us.  We are fighting the same enemy whether we go or stay.  What sense would it make to go to battle for others and lose our own families and neighbors?  One job is just as important as the other.  How could we carry on any campaign against the enemy, if we didn’t have workers who supported the war with their tithes?  God has given each of us talents and He has a plan and a purpose for each of us to use those talents in service to Him.

Our mission, Mr./Mrs/Miss Christian, should we decide to accept it, is to determine what those talents are and use them for Kingdom purposes. There are no spectators on the battlefield.  Each of us has a job to do and God has blessed each of us with the talent to do it.  The war has been won, we know the final outcome.  Jesus wins!  But there are battles to be fought and we need to strap on the full armor of God, step up and take our position in the fight.  Just as God told Jehoshaphat, the battle is not yours, it is mine, but you and your people still have to take up your position on the battlefield
 
 

So it is today, God will win the battle for us, but we still have a job to do.  We must take up our position on the battlefield and stand while He fights the battle.

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

Post 12-11-2018

Pray With Them, Not Just For Them

even-smaller-bug-light1

1 Then Job replied to the Lord:  2  “I know that you can do anything,   and no one can stop you. — Job 42:1,2 NLT

Job 42:1-7

We are all familiar with Job’s story and all the things he had suffered at the hands of satan.  God had allowed this to happen even though God considered Job a righteous man.  Remember that God pointed Job out to satan and asked him “have you considered my servant Job?”  Reading through the book of Job brings up a lot of questions.  It also shows us that sometimes good friends can give us some bad advice.  God wasn’t happy about the advice Job’s three friends had given him.  It is good to get advice from Godly people, but sometimes God wants to speak to us directly and wants us to lean on Him and Him alone.  There are mysteries that only He can solve and situations that only He understands.  There are lessons that only God can teach us.  God considered Job a righteous man but that doesn’t mean that Job didn’t sin.  After all, there has only been one perfect man to ever walk this earth.  Perhaps Job sinned in that he was always the one that offered sacrifices after the lengthy parties that his sons threw at their homes. We are not told whether or not he taught this practice to his kids, only that he always did it for them.  Which begs the question. are we actively teaching our kids how to walk with integrity before God?  Are we praying with them or just praying for them?  When situations arise, are we doing all the praying and sacrificing or are we teaching them that the whole family prays, ask for God’s forgiveness and sacrifices together?

 

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” – Anonymous
Post 12-04-2018