Never Alone

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It is not because you are so good or have such integrity that you are about to occupy their land. The Lord your God will drive these nations out ahead of you only because of their wickedness, and to fulfill the oath he swore to your ancestors Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. You must recognize that the Lord your God is not giving you this good land because you are good, for you are not—you are a stubborn people. — Deut. 9:5, 6 NLT

It is very easy for us to read the account of the journey from Egypt to Canaan and criticize the children of Israel for all their stubbornness and lack of faith.  God chose them, called them out of Egypt, provided for them and kept them safe by His own arm and great power.  Their response was to moan and groan about the things they didn’t have instead of being thankful for what God was doing for them. Had it not have been for the prayers of Moses, God would have completely destroyed these people and started over with just the family of Moses. God reminds them that it is not because of any goodness in them that He has allowed them to come this far.  It is because of the wickedness of the people that live in Canaan and the oath He has sworn to Abraham, Issac and Jacob.  Let us look at our lives today.  How often do we, who live in the lap of luxury compared to ninety percent of the world, moan, groan and complain?  How often do we consider what we don’t have instead of being thankful for what we do have?  Let us honestly and truthfully consider our thoughts and how we spend our time and resources.  Are we not just as stubborn and rebellious as these people were?  If Jesus came to our house today, would He feel welcomed by what He sees or would He wonder if we even knew Him?  If Jesus walked with us everyday, is there anything in our lifestyle that we would change?  If the answer is “Yes”, then let’s not be stubborn, let’s change it today because Jesus is walking with us everywhere we go.

20 Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” ​ — Matt. 28:20 NLT​

 

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

Post 11-01-2018

A Heart That Longs for God

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17 Each of you should continue to live in whatever situation the Lord has placed you, and remain as you were when God first called you. This is my rule for all the churches. 18 For instance, a man who was circumcised before he became a believer should not try to reverse it. And the man who was uncircumcised when he became a believer should not be circumcised now. 19 For it makes no difference whether or not a man has been circumcised. The important thing is to keep God’s commandments.—1 Cor. 7:17-19 NLT

When we are called by the Holy Spirit and we accept Jesus as our Savior, there most likely won’t be any great or significant changes in our appearance or our vocations. There probably won’t be any changes in the personality that God gave us when we were born. God is not too concerned with our outward appearance. Our outward appearance and situation have absolutely nothing to do with our salvation. What God does expect is a change of the heart. If we have truly accepted Jesus as our Savior and Lord, our desires will change. We will want to follow God’s commandments simply because we love Him too much not to do so. He takes out the old stony heart and replaces it with a heart that desires His presence.

26 And I will give you a new heart, and I will put a new spirit in you. I will take out your stony, stubborn heart and give you a tender, responsive heart. 27 And I will put my Spirit in you so that you will follow my decrees and be careful to obey my regulations.—Ezekiel 36:26,27 NLT

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous
Post 02-18-2018

Enter In Through Jesus

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 So there is a special rest still waiting for the people of God.

–Hebrews 4:9 NLT


In Exodus, when God delivered the children of Israel from Egypt, His plan was that they would enter into a land of milk and honey. They would eat crops they had not planted, drink water from wells they did not dig, and live in houses they did not build. In other words, God had prepared a place of rest for them. Because they were stubborn and refused to believe that God could and would deliver them, they disobeyed again and again. God became angry at their disobedience and refused to allow any of that generation to enter into the land of Canaan except for Joshua and Caleb. These two men had shown faith in God when all others refused to believe, thus they were allowed to enter into the land of rest. God’s plan was for man to work six days and then rest, just as He set the example in His acts of creation. His plan is for us to enter a period of rest when we leave this earth and then to reign with Him forever. But for us to enter that land of rest, we must accept Jesus Christ as our Savior. Just as God showed grace to those in the Old Testament who believed, He shows us grace through faith. The difference being that He was the perfect sacrifice forever and there is now no need for another sacrifice of any sort. As believers, our place in the land of rest is assured by the blood of Jesus.

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

Post 04-24-2017

The Desires of Our Hearts – Part 4

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9 “The human heart is the most deceitful of all things, and desperately wicked.
Who really knows how bad it is? — Jeremiah 17:9 NLT

We are all very familiar with this verse from Jeremiah.  Since this verse is true and God says that He will give us the desires of our hearts, how do we reconcile the two verses?  As is usual, there are very few verses in the Bible that stand alone and these verses are examples of this.  The verse from Jeremiah is describing the heart that we are born with. Those hearts belong to the master of sin and only desire those things that please the flesh.  So, to reconcile these verses, we need to have a change of heart. We find a clue to God’s solution to the enigma in a passage in Ezekiel. This is an Old Testament verse that points to a future event.
26 And I will give you a new heart, and I will put a new spirit in you. I will take out your stony, stubborn heart and give you a tender, responsive heart. 27 And I will put my Spirit in you so that you will follow my decrees and be careful to obey my regulations. — Ezekiel 36:26, 27 NLT
 
Before Jesus died, He made a promise to us to send a Comforter and a guide to lead us into all truth. After He arose and ascended, He sent us His Spirit as promised in Ezekiel and by Jesus Himself.  Once we receive Jesus as our Savior and Lord, we receive the Holy Spirit into our hearts.  It is at that point, that the reformation of the heart begins.  We now bow to a new master, Jesus Christ. Our heart is changed so that the desires of our hearts are now pleasing to God.  First, He gives us a new heart with new desires and then He can give us what our hearts desire.  The heart is new, but the reformation does not come overnight. It takes a lifetime of mortifying the flesh and when we come to the end of our life as a human, we will still be fighting that battle.   
Post 07-12-2016

A Chosen People, A Royal Priesthood

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51 “You stubborn people! You are heathen at heart and deaf to the truth. Must you forever resist the Holy Spirit? That’s what your ancestors did, and so do you! — Acts 7:51 NLT
Stephen has just recited a short summary of all the things God had brought the Israelites through and the miracles He had peformed in bringing them to the Promised Land.  Stephen also reminded them that God did this for them in spite of their unbelief and unfaithfulness.  He did it as a fulfillment of His covenant with their ancestors. Even though God was faithful, the Israelites were not, refusing to listen to Moses and any of the prophets God sent to them with messages warning them to repent and be obedient to God.  Instead they persecuted and murdered the prophets choosing to remain in their sinful ways and worship idols made by human hands.  The people Stephen was addressing were still following in their ancestor’s paths, choosing to kill the Messiah rather than to give up their worldly ways and repent.   If Stephen were here today, he could add the history of our country to his discourse and the accusation would still be true.  After all the years of God blessing this country with His abundance, we are still a “stubborn people, heathen at heart and deaf to the truth”.  More and more, as each day passes by, we become a more sinful nation.  We refuse to believe that God will punish us just as He punished the Israelites.  We must pray that God will have mercy on this nation of ours, that He will replace our hearts of stone with hearts of flesh and write His name upon our hearts.
Even though this was a promise God made to the Israelites, His chosen people, may He see fit to extend His mercies to us because, as Christians, we are a people chosen by Him as well.
Post 04-22-2016

We Never Walk Alone

even-smaller-bug-light1It is not because you are so good or have such integrity that you are about to occupy their land. The Lord your God will drive these nations out ahead of you only because of their wickedness, and to fulfill the oath he swore to your ancestors Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. You must recognize that the Lord your God is not giving you this good land because you are good, for you are not—you are a stubborn people. — Deut. 9:5, 6 NLT

It is very easy for us to read the account of the journey from Egypt to Canaan and criticize the children of Israel for all their stubbornness and lack of faith.  God chose them, called them out of Egypt, provided for them and kept them safe by His own arm and great power.  Their response was to moan and groan about the things they didn’t have instead of being thankful for what God was doing for them. Had it not have been for the prayers of Moses, God would have compeletely destroyed these people and started over with just the family of Moses. ​God reminds them that it is not because of any goodness in them that He has allowed them to come this far.  It is because of the wickedness of the people that live in Canaan and the oath He has sworn to Abraham, Issac and Jacob.  Let us look at our lives today.  How often do we, who live in the lap of luxury compared to ninety percent of the world, moan, groan and complain?  How often do we consider what we don’t have instead of being thankful for what we do have?  Let us honestly and truthfully consider our thoughts and how we spend our time and resources.  Are we not just as stubborn and rebellious as these people were?  If Jesus came to our house today, would He feel welcomed by what He sees or would He wonder if we even knew Him?  If Jesus walked with us everyday, is there anything in our lifestyle that we would change?  If the answer is “Yes”, then let’s not be stubborn, let’s change it today because Jesus is walking with us everywhere we go.
 

20 Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” ​ — Matt. 28:20 NLT​

 

Post 03-07-2016

Talk to Those Who Have Been Led Astray

God is waiting to show you the Way.

God is waiting to show you the Way.

47 “Have you been led astray, too?” the Pharisees mocked. 48 “Is there a single one of us rulers or Pharisees who believes in him? 49 These ignorant crowds do, but what do they know about it? A curse on them anyway!” 50 Nicodemus, the leader who had met with Jesus earlier, then spoke up. 51 “Is it legal to convict a man before he is given a hearing?” he asked. 52 They replied, “Are you from Galilee, too? Search the Scriptures and see for yourself — no prophet ever comes from Galilee!” 53 Then the meeting broke up and everybody went home.—John 7:47-53 (NLT)
​The religious leaders​ and the Pharisees, the very ones that God had entrusted to shepherd His flock, were the ones that refused to believe that this man, Jesus, was the Messiah. They were well versed in the Old Testament and should have known all the prophecies. It would have been fairly easy for them to find out exactly where Jesus was born and how many of those prophecies His birth and life, up to this point, had fulfilled. The problem was this; if they acknowledged Jesus as the Messiah while He refused to set up an earthly Kingdom, then they would lose their positions and authority to rule over the people. The flesh is stubborn, even in the presence of overwhelming evidence, the flesh wants to hang onto the old ways, so they allowed themselves to be deceived.. Accepting Jesus as the Messiah would have turned their society upside down. Our flesh is the same today. We want a better life but we don’t want to give up fleshly pleasures. We cannot allow ourselves and those around us to be deceived. It is our responsibility to spread the Good News. Jesus died for our sins and we can be set free.
13 For “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” 14 But how can they call on him to save them unless they believe in him? And how can they believe in him if they have never heard about him? And how can they hear about him unless someone tells them?–Romans 10:13-14 (NLT)
Today, ​​t​ell somebody about Jesus!​​!
Post 12-14-14