I’m believing in God for my miracle

True Faith Hebrews 11:6

Daily Spirit & Word 583:

I’m Believing In God For My Miracle.

Good morning my friends, have you ever watched the so called ‘christian’ TV? I’ve put Christian with a small ‘c’ because it’s a strange version of Christianity on most of these shows. They ask people to send in money and believe God for their miracle, they ask people to show their faith by sowing a seed. Normally the seed (money) they are asking for is sown into their ministry: i.e. their luxury; house, car, jet, jewellery, suits, shoes and mansions etc… Am I being too cynical?

They equate faith with the size of the offering.

I feel so sorry for many sincere believers who are duped into thinking this is God’s way of faith.

So what is FAITH? or more importantly God’s WAY of faith?

It’s not so much how BIG your faith is in what you are believing God for, but in how BIG your God is.

Is your God able to do anything? The God of the Bible is.

Is your God able to heal or provide for all your needs? The God of the Bible is.

You see my friends, God is Jesus: We saw that yesterday and He could; walk on water, turn water into wine, raise the dead and come back to life Himself. Jesus is God and He’s AWESOME! He can do anything you could ever imagine, but:

When you’ve GOT FAITH in God: Then NOTHING is impossible.

Matthew 19:26  But Jesus beheld them, and said unto them, With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible. 

ALL THINGS ARE POSSIBLE FOR GOD.

Look through Hebrews and you’ll see what REAL faith is: The whole chapter (printed below) is all about the great heroes of our FAITH who were commended, not by men (though they are), but by God. God recognised that they were not simply trusting in blind faith, but had exercised active faith in HIM.

Remember Hebrews tells us: “Without faith it is impossible to please God” and it tells us why. The reason is not that we lack the ability to ‘believe’ strongly enough for what we want or desire, but we’re NOT trusting completely in HIM. Our vision of God is too small.

Hebrews 11:6  “But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.”

He is a REWARDER of those who diligently seek HIM.

It’s NOT seeking what you want in life: It’s seeking HIM for who He is FIRST.

Remember Jesus ORDER OF PRIORITY: “Seek you first the Kingdom of God”

Seek first God and His Kingdom Priorities: Then you’ll see that God IS are REWARDER of those who diligently seek HIM.

When I hear about poor struggling brothers and sisters holding onto their wishes and not letting go of their own desires, it’s like they are putting their faith in their ability to persuade God to do something He’s reluctant to do. That’s not FAITH, it’s manipulation or as the Bible describes it, witchcraft. To manipulate God is the ultimate sin. To try and manipulate God is foolishness. For the Bible reveals that the God of the Word: is the God of His Word: He is faithful to all His promises and there are so many promises that God has made in His Word: However, each and every one of God’s promises comes with a principle or precept that we need to live by or seek first His Kingdom. When you say the Lord’s Prayer “Thy Kingdom Come” You are asking for God’s priorities, His Kingly desires to be done on earth, in your life. Is that what you are asking and believing God for?

What if it was God’s will that you don’t get what you so earnestly desire? What if He, in His Divine wisdom, knew that it would not be good for you to have what you want? God can and does say NO to our requests: He’s not our servant but our King. We serve Him, not He us. He is not like the gene in the lamp that we rub to get him to appear and do our bidding. He is God Almighty and we make contact with Him by faith in order to seek His will for our lives.

Yes we all want certain things in life: However, is it not better to simply TRUST that God knows what we need, to believe in His Fatherly goodness towards us and that He is a REWARDER of those who diligently seek Him and His Kingdom priorities.

If you find yourself in a position of wanting something; no matter what it is; job, house, baby, husband, girl or success. Then just let go of those things, even if it’s healing, and settle your heart with PEACE by deciding that no matter what, you are going to do all that you can to live according to God’s will. You are going to do everything in your power to live according to His Kingdom priorities and principles and precepts, then see if He’ll not open the floodgates of Heaven. God’s already revealed the way that we should live by faith, but doing what He’s commanded and revealed is His will for every follower of Jesus.

Yes may ask God for things, but then leave Him alone, trust, believe and hope in HIM alone, that He has heard your request and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him and His Kingdom. Amen!

So many Christians get STUCK, waiting for God to answer their prayers. Instead of being active about His Kingdom business. He’s heard your request, now say to God your loving heavenly Father; “OK Father, I’ve asked for ………….., now what is it that You want me to be busy doing today for Your Kingdom?” Live every day according to God’s Kingdom priorities, seek first His Kingdom (His Kingly Desires and Will) and you will be REWARDED. We don’t know what His rewards will be, it may be that He’ll grant you your heart’s desires or as I’ve found, more often than not, He’ll enable you to see how He’s already answered those prayers, but in His own ways. He has so much that He wants to give you and reveal to you.

It’s a transformation that we need: A Change of MIND-SET:

We need to change from; “I’m believing God for ‘my’ miracle” to “I’m believing God for ‘His’ miracles”.

Prayer: Yes my friends, I too am believing God for HIS miracles: I want to see sick people being healed, atheists come to faith, the poor being relieved, those who don’t have anyone to love them, being loved, children being taught God’s Kingdom, Christians being fed upon the solid meat of God’s Word; these are the miracles that I’m believing God for. And most importantly I’m believing God for this wonderful Miracle: “The harvest is ripe and plentiful, but the labourers are few” I’m believing God for the Miracle of more Labourers in His Harvest Field. Who’s going to come and do some reaping with me? Father please, send some Labourers, we need them Lord, the Harvest really is plentiful here in London and all over the world. People need to hear about Jesus; Father I know that You want more harvesters. Move them by Your Holy Spirit Lord. Amen!

Let go and let God: He’s in control. He’s never going to leave you. He’s got the whole universe under His power.

Have and Awesome Week: Believing God for His Miracles. Amen!

Don.

 

Bible Reading: Hebrews 11. FAITH.

 

Hebrews 11:1-40 (NIV)
1 Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. 2  This is what the ancients were commended for. 3  By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God’s command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible. 4  By faith Abel offered God a better sacrifice than Cain did. By faith he was commended as a righteous man, when God spoke well of his offerings. And by faith he still speaks, even though he is dead. 5  By faith Enoch was taken from this life, so that he did not experience death; he could not be found, because God had taken him away. For before he was taken, he was commended as one who pleased God. 6  And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him. 7  By faith Noah, when warned about things not yet seen, in holy fear built an ark to save his family. By his faith he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness that comes by faith. 8  By faith Abraham, when called to go to a place he would later receive as his inheritance, obeyed and went, even though he did not know where he was going. 9  By faith he made his home in the promised land like a stranger in a foreign country; he lived in tents, as did Isaac and Jacob, who were heirs with him of the same promise. 10  For he was looking forward to the city with foundations, whose architect and builder is God. 11  By faith Abraham, even though he was past age—and Sarah herself was barren—was enabled to become a father because he considered him faithful who had made the promise. 12  And so from this one man, and he as good as dead, came descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and as countless as the sand on the seashore. 13  All these people were still living by faith when they died. They did not receive the things promised; they only saw them and welcomed them from a distance. And they admitted that they were aliens and strangers on earth. 14  People who say such things show that they are looking for a country of their own. 15  If they had been thinking of the country they had left, they would have had opportunity to return. 16  Instead, they were longing for a better country—a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them. 17  By faith Abraham, when God tested him, offered Isaac as a sacrifice. He who had received the promises was about to sacrifice his one and only son, 18  even though God had said to him, “It is through Isaac that your offspring will be reckoned.” 19  Abraham reasoned that God could raise the dead, and figuratively speaking, he did receive Isaac back from death. 20  By faith Isaac blessed Jacob and Esau in regard to their future. 21  By faith Jacob, when he was dying, blessed each of Joseph’s sons, and worshipped as he leaned on the top of his staff. 22  By faith Joseph, when his end was near, spoke about the exodus of the Israelites from Egypt and gave instructions about his bones. 23  By faith Moses’ parents hid him for three months after he was born, because they saw he was no ordinary child, and they were not afraid of the king’s edict. 24  By faith Moses, when he had grown up, refused to be known as the son of Pharaoh’s daughter. 25  He chose to be ill-treated along with the people of God rather than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a short time. 26  He regarded disgrace for the sake of Christ as of greater value than the treasures of Egypt, because he was looking ahead to his reward. 27  By faith he left Egypt, not fearing the king’s anger; he persevered because he saw him who is invisible. 28  By faith he kept the Passover and the sprinkling of blood, so that the destroyer of the firstborn would not touch the firstborn of Israel. 29  By faith the people passed through the Red Sea as on dry land; but when the Egyptians tried to do so, they were drowned. 30  By faith the walls of Jericho fell, after the people had marched around them for seven days. 31  By faith the prostitute Rahab, because she welcomed the spies, was not killed with those who were disobedient. 32  And what more shall I say? I do not have time to tell about Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, David, Samuel and the prophets, 33  who through faith conquered kingdoms, administered justice, and gained what was promised; who shut the mouths of lions, 34  quenched the fury of the flames, and escaped the edge of the sword; whose weakness was turned to strength; and who became powerful in battle and routed foreign armies. 35  Women received back their dead, raised to life again. Others were tortured and refused to be released, so that they might gain a better resurrection. 36  Some faced jeers and flogging, while still others were chained and put in prison. 37  They were stoned; they were sawn in two; they were put to death by the sword. They went about in sheepskins and goatskins, destitute, persecuted and ill-treated— 38  the world was not worthy of them. They wandered in deserts and mountains, and in caves and holes in the ground. 39  These were all commended for their faith, yet none of them received what had been promised. 40  God had planned something better for us so that only together with us would they be made perfect.

 

The Supremacy of Jesus

Jesus is the Supreme Being in the Universe today

Daily Spirit & Word, 582:

The Supremacy of Jesus Christ.

Good morning my friends, it’s so good to be back with you again. It was a wonderful holiday with Julie; we’ve seen family, visited friends and places around London and taken time to make-and-mend in the house and garden. However, I’ve seen that following Jesus requires that we’re constant with Him. We need Him every day, but why do we need Jesus so much in life today? Are you convinced that you need Jesus? Let’s see what God’s Word tells us about Him: Let’s refresh ourselves with the written testimony about our Lord and Saviour.

Our Bible Reading Today:

Colossians 1:15-23 
15  He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. (Born on Earth as a man: The True Image of God)
16  For by him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him. (Jesus is the Creator).
17  He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. (He sustains the Universe).
18  And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy.
19  For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, (Jesus was always; fully God).
20  and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross. (His sacrificial death brings PEACE through His blood).
21  Once you were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because of your evil behaviour.
22  But now he has reconciled you by Christ’s physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation— 23  if you continue in your faith, established and firm, not moved from the hope held out in the gospel. This is the gospel that you heard and that has been proclaimed to every creature under heaven, and of which I, Paul, have become a servant.

Jesus IS The Supreme Being: He IS God.

He said to Philip, “If you’ve seen me you’ve seen the Father” John 14:9

In context: to Doubting Thomas’ questions about where Jesus is going.

What more can we say about Jesus?

James Allan Francis (1864-1928). DD (One Solitary Life)

Here is a man who was born in an obscure village, the child of a peasant woman.

He grew up in another obscure village, where He worked in a carpenter shop until He was thirty, and then for three years He was an itinerant preacher. He never wrote a book. He never held an office. He never owned a home. He never had a family. He never went to college. He never put his foot inside a big city. He never traveled two hundred miles from the place where He was born. He never did one of the things that usually accompany greatness. He had no credentials but Himself. He had nothing to do with this world except the naked power of His divine manhood. While still a young man, the tide of public opinion turned against Him. His friends ran away, one of them betrayed Him, one of them denied Him. He was turned over to His enemies. He went through the mockery of a trial. He was nailed to a cross between two thieves. His executioners gambled for the only piece of property He had on earth while He was dying—and that was his coat. When he was dead He was taken down and laid in a borrowed grave through the pity of a friend. Nineteen wide centuries have come and gone and today He is the centerpiece of the human race and the leader of the column of progress. I am far within the mark when I say that all the armies that ever marched, and all the navies that ever sailed, and all the parliaments that ever sat, all the kings that ever reigned, put together have not affected the life of mankind upon this earth as powerfully as has that One Solitary Life: Jesus Christ.

  • So Jesus never wrote a book: But today there are more books about Jesus than any other figure in the history of mankind.
  • He only had a handful of followers when He died, but now countless millions name Jesus as LORD and it’s still the fastest growing religion in the world.
  • Jesus splits the History of Mankind: BC & AD…

What more can we say about Jesus?

He is Supreme: But what does that mean to you and me?

1) Jesus Reveals God To Mankind:

Before Jesus came God was just an idea, but upon His arrival upon the earth, He became an ICON (The exact representation of God the Father on the Earth).

We all know what ICONS are:

Take out your mobile phone, if you have one, look at the screen, you’ll see little Icons that represent different things; Calendar, Contacts, Facebook, Twitter, Photos,  etc. You know that these Icons represent all your information; you can just click on one of those Icons and they’ll take you to your desired information, right?

  • If I click Calendar, I can see all my upcoming appointments.
  • If I click Contacts and know where all my friends live.
  • If I click Facebook I can see what all my friends have been sharing with the world.
  • If you come to Jesus, If you connect with Jesus, the ICON of God, you connect immediatly with the Father.

Jesus said:

Matthew 11:27  “All things have been committed to me by my Father. No-one knows the Son except the Father, and no-one knows the Father except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him.”

Look at those words carefully, “No-one knows the Son, No-one knows the Father except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal Him”… i.e. You can’t KNOW GOD by any other way than by coming to Jesus Christ.

That’s why Jesus said, “I AM the Way, and the Truth and the Life” John 14:6.

It not by reason, but by revelation. You can’t discover God the Father by human reason alone, you’ll never argue a person into the Kingdom of Heaven, they, you and I and everyone needs a REVELATION of God by Jesus Christ, even today.

That’s why Jesus is your ICON: Click / Connect with Jesus and you’ll discover God the Father.

Colossians 1:15 and 19:  “He is the image (ICON) of the invisible God,” and “God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him”.

Children Ask: “What does God look like?”

I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve had schoolchildren come into St Luke’s and ask me that question: “What does God look like?” My answer is always the same, “He’s exactly like Jesus” When Jesus wan on the earth, He said, “If you’ve seen me, you’ve seen my Father”. “The Only way to see the Father is by coming to me”. Do you want to see what God looks like? Then come to Jesus by faith.

2) Jesus IS the Creator:

Look with me at verse 16 of our Bible reading today:

Colossians 1:16 “For by him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him.” (Jesus is the Creator).

a) Jesus Is The POWER of His Creation:

John tells us the same thing about Jesus: John 1:3

John 1:3 3  “Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made.”

NOTHING was there before Jesus made it. NOTHING. He made the whole UNIVERSE out of NOTHING.

Now, we can’t do that can we, we can’t make an Egg out of nothing. We can’t even make a mud-pie out of nothing, we need dirt and water to make mud-pies. Jesus made it ALL out of NOTHING.

That’s why Jesus could: Walk on water, make wine out of water, heal the sick and raise the dead back to life again, because in Him is LIFE, He is the Creative POWER behind everything.

Jesus is the Power of Creation, but Jesus is also the Preserver of His Creation.

b) Jesus Preserves His Creation:

Look with me at verse 17 of our reading today;

Colossians 1:17 “He is before all things, and in him all things hold together.”

DARK MATTER: Scientists for years have been trying to discover “DARK MATTER” the missing force in the universe. They call it ‘Dark Matter’ because they can’t see it or even find it, but they know it’s there. My friends, it’s the most massive missing force, but the Bible reveals what that force that keeps the whole universe together is. “It’s Jesus”. He’s the super-glue that keeps it all together. He’s not dark-matter though, He’s the Light of the Universe. He’s the Light of the world. In Him there is NO Darkness at all. “In HIM all things hold together”…

When you are getting married, you cleave to your husband. A husband cleaves to his wife. The CLING (HOLD) together. That which God has joined together, let not man separate. Stuck together forever by God. Jesus holds ALL THINGS together.

c) Jesus is the Purpose of His Creation:

He did it all for Himself.

“It’s NOT about you” We’d like to think the universe revolves around and about us, but let’s get a reality check this morning my friends, Jesus made the whole of CREATION for Himself.

Verse 16:  “For by him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him.”

“All THINGS were Created by HIM and for HIM”… WOWzer! That’s an awesome REVELATION isn’t it? Jesus is the PURPOSE of the UNIVERSE. He’s not just the Power of the Creation, He’s not just the Glue of Creation, He’s the Purpose of His Creation too.

3) Finally, Jesus is the RECONCILER OF HIS CREATION.

Let’s remind ourselves of the last few verses of our Bible reading today;

Colossians 1:20-23  “and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross. (His sacrificial death brings PEACE through His blood).

21  Once you were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because of your evil behaviour.
22  But now he has reconciled you by Christ’s physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation— 23  if you continue in your faith, established and firm, not moved from the hope held out in the gospel. This is the gospel that you heard and that has been proclaimed to every creature under heaven, and of which I, Paul, have become a servant.

Jesus RECONCILED All Things: In heaven and on the Earth.

Do you know what ‘reconciled’ means? It means to bring-back-together again. Be made one with another. To bring into alignment again. Like Iran and the UK opening up the British Embassy in Tehran again. After many years of being without an Ambassador in Iran, Britain and Iran have been RECONCILED. Brought back together again.

A husband and wife: who’d been having difficulties in their marriage, finally got back together, they were RECONCILED after years of struggle and their LOVE is stronger now that it’s ever been.

You and me: If you’ve come to TRUST Jesus as your Saviour and Lord: He has reconciled you to God the Father.

We were separated from God, why? The reading tells us; “because of your evil behaviour”.

Now you’ll get offended; “I’m NOT evil” I can hear the gears in your mind whirring and twirling right now. “I’m NOT evil”… However, the Bible tells us that we ARE until we’ve been RECONCILED by the Lord Jesus Christ.

How are we ‘evil’? What is ‘evil’? Evil is the force behind rebellion and disobedience. We’ve all rebelled against God, we’ve all be disobedient to His Commands.

That’s why we need Jesus: It’s not that He’s just made the whole Creation, the He’s the Power, the Preserver and the Purpose of His Creation, but He’s also the ONLY ONE who could bring His Creation back to Himself once again. He is the only way back to God the Father: That’s why Jesus came to His Creation.

He came and He died: He shed His innocent blood: In order that He might SAVE those that He’d Created.

Conclusion:

My friends, we’ve seen the Majesty of Jesus, but now I want to show the Mystery of Jesus: He came to His Creation to SAVE Mankind.

Isaiah reveals a little secret that we’ve been looking at today;

Isaiah 33:22  “For the LORD is our judge, the LORD is our lawgiver, the LORD is our king; it is he who will save us.”

  • Jesus is your Judge: He’s coming back again to Judge the Living and Dead.
  • Jesus is your LAW giver: He gave us the 10 Commandments. So that we could see our need of a Saviour. We’ve failed that Law and will be judged Justly by the LORD according to it.
  • Jesus is the KING: The Lord is your King. One day every knee will bow before Him. Let’s do it NOW before it’s too late and we leave this earth without bowing before the LORD our King whilst we’ve still got a chance.
  • Jesus is the SAVIOUR: “is is HE who will save us”. He died so that you might be saved from God’s wrath.

So my friends, I plead with every single on of you today, be RECONCILED to God. Jesus is the Creator, He is the Power of Creation, The Preserver of Creation, The Purpose of Creation but He’s also the Reconciler of His Creation. Will you be reconciled to God: Come, come to Jesus Christ right now. Don’t wait. Trust Him. Receive Him. Repent and trust the Only Saviour of Mankind today. He’s not Dark Matter, but the Light of Life the Creator who knitted you together in your mother’s womb.

We sang this song today:

“This Kingdom” It’s all about our King Jesus.

Jesus
The expression of God’s love
The grace of God, the Word of God
Revealed to us
Jesus, God’s holiness displayed
Now glorified, now justified
His kingdom comes.

What an Awesome Hymn of Praise to Jesus.

Can we sing it and mean it today?

I’m praying that all my brothers and sisters in Jesus will have an awesome time of worship today.

I’m praying for everyone that I know who has yet to come to Jesus in faith and trust, turning from sin to be saved by Him, the LORD of all Creation.

I’m praying for our Nation today, we need to KNOW Jesus afresh in the UK. We need to know our need of Jesus.

I’m praying for the World today, the world that Jesus made, because the world needs to know the Creator and why He came to the Earth.

I’m praying for Christians today, that they’ll be fired up with the Gospel (Good News: that Jesus wants all people to be saved). That every Christian will be so full of Jesus love that they’ll leak that love everywhere they go.

I’m praying the LORD’S Prayer today: Thy Kingdom Come on Earth as it is in Heaven. Amen!

Have an awesome day with Jesus in the power of the Holy Spirit.

Don.

Who told you that you were naked?

Sin and Disobedience

Daily Spirit & Word: The Fall of Mankind into Sin.

“I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid.”
Good morning my friends, my holiday is over, I’m back at work, it’s been awesome to have a long break from my usual routine, but it’s also good to get back to ‘normal’. It’s early morning and I’m up with my Lord Jesus. You know something, I’ve been meeting with Him every single day of my holiday, because you cannot have a holiday from being a follower of Jesus.

Yesterday someone came around to my house and asked me this question; “How many times can you go away from the Lord before you finally and fully fall away?” It was a simple and honest question. When someone asks me a question like that, I know that it’s like a loaded-gun or an iceberg, there far more below the surface than above the water. Some people have said to me, “How can you fit 120 men inside one of those, referring to my Submarine?” Then I have to explain, “You know my friend, an Submarine is much like an iceberg, there’s far more beneath the water than there is above” If you could see a Submarine in a dry-dock then you’d realise what I mean, it’s an immense piece of exciting engineering which always reminds me of a whale.

My response was, “You only need to go away from the Lord ONCE before it becomes permanent.” His face fell immediately, because, as I’d guessed, he was looking for a way to excuse his life of sin. You see my friends, we cannot have a holiday away from the Lord once we’ve started upon the journey of faith with Jesus. Do you remember the Lord’s words on this subject?

Hand to the Plough:

Luke 9:62 “And Jesus said unto him, No man, having put his hand to the plough, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.”

But I’m going through Genesis at the moment and a phrase jumped out a me this morning:

Genesis 3:7-11 7  Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they realised that they were naked; so they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves. 
8  Then the man and his wife heard the sound (voice) of the LORD God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the LORD God among the trees of the garden.
9  But the LORD God called to the man, “Where are you?” 
10  He answered, “I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid.” 
11  And he said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree from which I commanded you not to eat?” 

Thankfully, those who’ve trusted in Christ Jesus have been SAVED:

Colossians 1:13-14 13  “For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, 14  in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.”

When we come to Jesus who knows the end from the beginning, He knows your whole life, even before you gave in and trusted Him as your Saviour, so He knows those times that you’ll yield to temptation, that you’ll be weak and fall into sin. And He still gives you the blessings of the knowledge of forgiveness and a new heart to obey Him. What amazing grace and mercy.

Yes Jesus has ‘rescued’ you from the dominion of darkness: However, we still get those same, Adam like, feelings of separation when we sin. Remember how Adam and Eve, once they’d eaten the forbidden fruit, made coverings for themselves out of leaves and hid themselves in the garden of Eden. What was it that made them hide? They heard the voice of the Lord in the garden. The Lord was either singing or saying something out loud, and the voice of the Lord became a terror to them. They knew that they were naked; i.e. that the Lord could see what they’d done, it was open before Him who’s eyes see and know everything. It’s the same with anyone who sins, even just a little, the mere fact and act of disobedience has the exact same effect, we all want to run away and hide from God, from his presence, from His Holy voice. We don’t want to see Him, we don’t want to hear Him, we don’t want to be anywhere near Him, so we run away and hide and try our best to cover-up our shameful nakedness.

Asking that question, “How many times can we go away from God before it becomes permanent?” is like asking “How many times can I choose to sin and get away with it?” The answer is “NONE” You’ll never get away with it, God knows it all and He’s right there as a witness to every single act or thought of disobedience.

Alexander Maclaren has said it brilliantly: “These are still the two lies which wile us to sin: ‘It will do you no harm,’ and ‘You are cheating yourselves out of good by not doing it.’ Alexander Expositions of Holy Scripture – Genesis.

When God asked Adam, “Who told you that you were naked?” He KNEW that Adam and Eve had eaten and had received the knowledge of Good and Evil.

My friend related how he’d been feeling; that there was an emptiness, a barrenness, how God seemed distant, far away. Then he said something amazing, “You know, I know, that God has not moved away, it’s me”…

Temptation to sin: We’ve already lost the battle when we’re thinking to ourselves; “I wonder how many times I can do this and get away with it?”

Disobedience: Acting or Thinking sinfully; results in cutting us off from the Lord. Even after we’ve come to faith and trust in Jesus. Until we get right with Him again we’re separated from Him, we’re not walking with Him, we’re in the darkness and there is a feeling that we want to cover-up our shameful nakedness, to hide our inner-self from the Lord. There is no peace when we’re walking in the darkness. There is no joy in our hearts.

“Who told you that you were naked?”

When we choose to sin, afterwards it’s like the LORD is not there, as if our relationship has died, we’re cut-off from Him. We’ll also get fearful and want to run and hide from God, because we become aware that He can see right through us. 

When Temptations Come:

We’ve got a choice: We can listen to God’s voice, His witness within, our Conscience, that will be crying out to us; “This will lead to the death of your relationship with God”. Or we can reason with ourselves and con ourselves into believing; It’s not that bad, everyone else is doing it, everybody thinks it’s OK, it won’t do me any harm, why not enjoy yourself, you deserve it, you’ve earned the right to enjoy it”

But Moses Chose A Different Way:

Hebrews 11:25  “He chose to be ill-treated along with the people of God rather than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a short time.”

When we choose to follow God’s WAY: It’s costly in terms of dying to self, in saying “No!” to the pleasures of sin for a season.

Hebrews 11:25  “Choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season;”

Yes we can enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season, but whilst we’re doing so, we’ll be doing it away from Jesus and it will be as if He’s dead to us, as if He’s not real, as if there is no God. The realisation will come to us that we’re NAKED and we’ll want to run and hide like Adam and Eve. But just like a dark-cloud hides the sun, the sun still continues to shine behind it’s dark lining; so God continues to reign and rule behind the darkness of our disobedience.

Just as God called out in the Garden of Eden for Adam: “Adam, Where are you?” He’s calling out to you and me today: “Where are you?”

  • Are you walking with the Lord?
  • Are you seeking to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season?

Have an awesome day with Jesus. Choose LIFE, JOY, PEACE and FELLOWSHIP with God today. It’s going to be FREEDOM and FOUNTAINS of LOVE flowing within.

Prayer: “Dear Lord Jesus, I pray today that when temptation comes, I’ll be listening to You in my heart. Help me to know that choosing to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season is like death to my relationship with You. This day Lord; I’m choosing LIFE and the joy that comes as I walk with You. Help me Lord! Amen.”

Don.

 

My Birthday Prayer

Daily Spirit & Word 580:

My Birthday Prayer.

Good morning my friends, it’s my birthday and what I would LOVE this day is that every single person that I know and love receives a Birthday present from me. I cannot possibly give you; gold, silver or precious things, so I want to give you all something even better and more valuable; the knowledge of God’s will through spiritual wisdom and understanding.

Colossians 1:9  “For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you and asking God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all spiritual wisdom and understanding.

Once you receive this AWESOME gift, I know you are going to be blessed beyond your craziest imaginations of what ‘blessed’ means. Receive my birthday gift by turning in faith and repentance towards the LORD of all Creation; who created everything that is or has been or ever will be, out of nothing. Praise Him, because He gave you LIFE and Breath and Everything else this Universe contains. When you go out to discover NEW things in this Creation, be assured of this, there is ONE person who’s been there already, the LORD Jesus Christ, because He made it from nothing. (Do me a favour today and read Collossians chapter 1: you’ll see AWESOME, AMAZING THINGS).

Have a blessed day on my birthday. BTW I’m 56 years young today. LOL

BTW: I’ve just gotten off the telephone, my grandchildren; Aminata, Leila and Karamoko were the first to contact me today, they sang “Happy Birthday to Papa” and said, “Can we come over today?” Now what better present could a Papa want on his birthday than to see his treasures? LOL Have an awesome day with Jesus.

Don.

P.S. Do you KNOW Jesus? The Good News.

Are you filled with the Holy Spirit? Discover the Spirit Filled Life Today.

Blessed Hope: Heaven’s Value System.

Seek ye first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness

Daily Spirit & Word 579:

Blessed Hope: Heaven’s Value System.

Good morning my friends. I’ve been thinking about the fact that Jesus promised He’d be coming back and the Angels of heaven also gave testimony that we’d one day see Him, but differently, when Jesus comes back next time it won’t be the same as before.

The first time Jesus came to visit the Earth, He came in the form of a man, he came to humble dwellings, he came as a baby, he came and learned at trade at his surrogate father’s side, then he lived a sinless life and suffered at the hands of those He had created.

The next time that Jesus comes back, it will be very different; He’s coming back in GLORY. That glory is not like earthly glory; what we on earth value and glory in is different from Heaven’s GLORY. We value, strength, wealth and the ability to rule and dominate others. Our world is choc-full of ideologies that dictate how we should be living, most of those ideologies and strategies are based upon worldly values that are very different from Heaven’s.

Capitalism: The Thriving of the Strongest.

People are busy: Trying with all their might to supply all that they need. Everybody’s time is spent in seeking things to make life better. We all get caught up in the quest for the unreachable dream of a care-free life of luxury.

But the reality is that it is the strongest and most powerful who get the cream and cheese, the best of fare and the gold and silver. The rich within the Capitalist system are getting richer every day, whilst the poor are obviously getting poorer by the minute. The majority, the weak, the feeble, the infirm, those less educated and the poor are left to struggle and scrape-by on the meagre droppings from the rich man’s tables. The poor are begrudgingly given a paltry wage, far below the levels that would allow them to thrive in their society. Whilst governments of all shades of political viewpoints do nothing to alleviate these conditions and everything to exacerbate them. And they dare to call this ‘capitalism’ a model for the world to follow. We live in a pseudo-democratic society, but it’s those who are ‘rich’ and ‘powerful’ who’ll decide who’s going to rule and reign. Political power is purchased, not truly democratically voted for. Just look that the whole campaign from the media and the political powers against Labour’s Jeremy Corbyn: A man who dares to demonstrate God’s values for the poor and lowest in society. That’s the failure of Capitalism and the false models of Democracy the majority of the world’s poor live under today. It’s NOT good, it’s NOT fair and it’s NOT going to last for very long, because, thankfully, Jesus has promised to come back in ALL HIS GLORY and change the way things are forever. But before Jesus comes back, we may have to go through a radical revolution in our thinking about our values.

Heaven’s Values: Matthew 5-7 (Jesus Sermon on the Mount).

You see my friends, Heaven’s values are very different from worldly values: Look at the Beatitudes in Matthew’s Gospel and you’ll glimpse a radical Divine paradigm. Jesus whole sermon on the mount is well worth pondering; it’s not the rich, strong or powerful who’ll be counted on the day of His appearing, but those who CARE for others and for HOLINESS of life.

Sorting Out Differences: AGREE with your Enemy / Adversary before you go to court. That’s so different from our modern world’s way or taking everyone to court to get a judgement and compensation.

Hating Others: We live in a world of extremes and we’re encouraged to HATE those who appear to be radicals: ISIS etc. Yes, their acts are barbaric and horrific. However, Jesus encourages us to LOVE our Enemies not to HATE them. Perhaps if we loved people a lot more than we do, we’d win them over to a new way of living in the world. Perhaps, they’d see the error of their ways and become just as horrified as the majority of right thinking people in the world are. LOVE not war will win them over. War has a tendency to harden your enemies resolve to win at all costs. Just look at Scotland’s football team, we’ve never won the world cup, but the more we’re defeated the harder we try.

Divorce: So many people, when they run into difficulty in their relationships or even before they’ve properly begun to discover what true love is, they resort to divorce and move onto another partner. God HATES divorce. Why? Because when He Created Marriage between a man and a woman, He intended that relationship to reflect His own DIVINE relationship, it’s never meant to be broken. We’re meant to work through our difficulties and hardships.

Adultery: We normally think of adultery as being unfaithful with another person whilst being married. However Jesus reveals the true meaning of adultery. If we look upon another person with lust in our heart (lust is a strong desire to be with and have another person), it’s the same kind of thing as coveting. Though shalt not covet: desire something that belongs to someone else. We may never consider actually committing adultery, but Jesus shows us that even thinking about doing it is the same as actually doing it in God’s eyes. Who can say honestly that they’ve never been guilty of that?

The whole Sermon on the Mount is found in Matthew’s Gospel chapters 5-7, you can read it in about 10-15 mins slowly. I’d encourage everyone to read it through at least ten times to get a good handle upon Jesus message. Jesus touches on EVERY ASPECT OF LIFE in that Sermon. Every time I read it through, He highlights an aspect of my life that needs some Divine work, His forgiveness, His grace and His power in my heart.

What I’m endeavouring to demonstrate is that Heaven’s value system is radically different from the world in which we all live and if we were take this message to heart today, allow it to penetrate so that we want to live according to it’s teaching, to prepare ourselves for Christ’s GLORIOUS return, we’re going to be making ourselves ready to be transformed by God’s Holy Spirit, when we’re being transformed and begin living Christ’s ways in the world today, then we’re also going to radically transform the society in which we live. You will be SALT and LIGHT: You’ll be generous with the poor, kind to your neighbours, faithful to your wife and husband, peaceful when persecuted, generous to your enemies, loving to those who hate you, holy in the way you live before God. You’ll be living for Him instead of for yourself. You’ll also be storing up treasures in Heaven instead of upon this earth. That’s Heaven’s Value System and it is totally and radically different from society today.

Instead of seeking the vaporous trails of wealth and riches, look instead at what the LORD encourages us to pursue in His greatest teaching in the Sermon on the Mount: Seek FIRST THE KINGDOM, when we do that, everything else falls into place.

Matthew 6:31-34  “So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’
32  For the pagans (those not seeking to live God’s ways) run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them.
33  But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.
34  Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”

Why are we NOT to live like the rest of the world? Because God cares much more than we think He does. And Because God KNOWS what we need. He made the whole universe and each and every one of us too, so He knows how to take care of us. Seek HIS KINGDOM  and HIS VALUES (Righteousness) and then He’ll supply everything else that we need in abundance. Just take look at how He cares for the butterfly and how it’s dressed.

God Cares Much More Than We Think He Does

To live for Jesus and according to His teaching is to be living His Kingdom lifestyle. What Jesus Sermon on the mount reveals is that we need Him in order to live in the world today. Yes, He’s coming back soon and it’s going to be such a blessed glorious coming, but He’s also given us everything we need NOW to be able to live according to His ways. Seek the fullness of the Holy Spirit and turn to God in repentance and faith in Jesus Christ. He’ll enable you to live the abundant and joy-filled life.

With Heaven’s Value System in Your Heart: Have an AWESOME day with Jesus.

Don.

 

Faith Comes From God

Faith is a gift from God

Daily Spirit & Word 578: Faith Comes From God.

Good morning my friends, I’m still enjoying holiday time. Recently we’ve been having family staying and it’s been really great catching up on our daughter’s life. Hearing her joys and hardships and experiences; stories that without meeting up would remain untold or forgotten. It’s amazing how many things don’t get said often enough.

Faith doesn’t come from inside the individual: It is first generated by God.

We often imagine that faith comes from our own efforts:

I recently bought some silicone sealant: It comes in great long tubes and it’s really difficult to get them flowing at first, requiring great effort to squeeze out even a tiny dribble of the thick-creamy-goo from the nozzle. However, once it’s flowing it’s quite easy to keep it going, getting it to go where you want it to go is another thing though. I’ve watched trained craftsmen and they’re just dazzling they way they make straight lines with silicone; mines are more often than not; wobbly, lumpy and with peaks resembling a lemon meringue pie 🙂

Some people think that faith needs to be squeezed out like that, but it’s not by effort or force that faith comes.

Listen to how the Bible tells us that faith comes, and from whom it comes, because once you know this you’ll be less likely to be frustrated by your own and other people’s lack of faith. Also, If you want other people to come to a living faith in Jesus, then you’ll know how to achieve it, because you’ll be freed from many false expectations and you’ll also be able to set other people free too.

1) Faith is a Gift:

 Ephesians 2:8 (NLT) “God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God.”

It’s not by our own effort of good works or anything else we do, it’s a GIFT from God.

2)  Faith comes by hearing:

And it comes into a person’s life by hearing God’s Word.

Romans 10:17 “Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message (the good news about Jesus Christ), and the message is heard through the word of Christ.”

The ‘message’: (Read Romans 10:8-17 in Context below) It’s the whole Gospel of Jesus Christ: How all have sinned against God, what it means that we’ve sinned, how we have sinned, the consequences of sin, what happens to sinners if they were to die in their sin, God’s heart for sinners and how He demonstrated His love by sending His Son Jesus to save sinners from the wrath to come, then what it means to trust in Jesus by repenting and receiving Him as Lord: That’s the MESSAGE: People receive the gift of faith when they hear that message, it’s a gift that comes from God.

Sometimes as you share the ‘message’ of Christ, you’ll actually see faith coming upon a person, it changes them physically. Once a person has faith enough to believe, then all that’s needed is for them to exercise that saving faith in the Lord Jesus Christ Rom 10:8-17.

3) Faith grows:

The more you exercise your God given faith, the more it will grow and the easier those mountains will be removed.

1 John 5:4-5  “for everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith. 5  Who is it that overcomes the world? Only he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God.”

That’s Mountain Moving Faith:

Matthew 17:20-21  “And Jesus said unto them, Because of your unbelief (lack of faith and trust in God): for verily I say unto you, If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you. 21  Howbeit this kind goeth not out but by prayer and fasting.”

4) Faith is BELIEVING:

Remember that faith is BELIEVING in God, or believing what God has said. Jesus reminded His disciples on many occasions that they could move mountains if they had just a tiny amount of faith, even faith as small as a mustard seed. When you’re ready to believe God, what God has said in His Word; you’re ready to do ANYTHING.

Hebrews 11:1-13 Faith is Believing (Trusting / Risking Everything in and on God).

1 Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.
2  This is what the ancients were commended for. 
3  By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God’s command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible. 
4  By faith Abel offered God a better sacrifice than Cain did. By faith he was commended as a righteous man, when God spoke well of his offerings. And by faith he still speaks, even though he is dead. 
5  By faith Enoch was taken from this life, so that he did not experience death; he could not be found, because God had taken him away. For before he was taken, he was commended as one who pleased God.
6  And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him. 
7  By faith Noah, when warned about things not yet seen, in holy fear built an ark to save his family. By his faith he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness that comes by faith. 
8  By faith Abraham, when called to go to a place he would later receive as his inheritance, obeyed and went, even though he did not know where he was going.
9  By faith he made his home in the promised land like a stranger in a foreign country; he lived in tents, as did Isaac and Jacob, who were heirs with him of the same promise.
10  For he was looking forward to the city with foundations, whose architect and builder is God. 
11  By faith Abraham, even though he was past age—and Sarah herself was barren—was enabled to become a father because he considered him faithful who had made the promise.
12  And so from this one man, and he as good as dead, came descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and as countless as the sand on the seashore. 
13  All these people were still living by faith when they died. They did not receive the things promised; they only saw them and welcomed them from a distance. And they admitted that they were aliens and strangers on earth.

Conclusion:

“Faith comes from God; it’s His gift to those who hear the Gospel, but it needs to be exercised for it to grow stronger, exercise your faith and you’ll see mountains being moved.”

So my friends, if you have found that your own faith has begun to smoulder, then you know how to get it glowing again; get into God’s Word and let Him speak to you afresh. Avail yourself of all that He’s provided to enable that GIFT of faith to grow.

Secondly, if you’ve got friends who don’t yet believe or know God personally, then don’t simply say “Believe in Jesus” because that’s like trying to force silicone-sealant out of the tube with your fingers instead of using the device that’s been provided to make it easy. Faith is a gift from God, it comes by HEARING God’s Word, then it needs to be exercised to make it grow.

Another way to think of faith: It’s like a muscle. We’re all born with the gift of muscles, but some people get really huge muscles because they exercise them, the same is true with faith, God will give the gift of faith to anyone, but to make it grow it needs to be exercised. The way to spell faith is RISK 🙂

Have an awesome day, growing in the faith of the Lord Jesus Christ. Share your faith by letting those who don’t know Jesus know His Word and see how faith explodes into life in those professing atheists 🙂 Watch them backslide away from atheism.

Don.

NOTES:

Read Romans 10 in Context Below:

Romans 10:6-17 6  But the righteousness based on faith [imputed by God and bringing right relationship with Him] says, Do not say in your heart, Who will ascend into Heaven? that is, to bring Christ down;
7  Or who will descend into the abyss? that is, to bring Christ up from the dead [as if we could be saved by our own efforts].
8  But what does it say? The Word (God’s message in Christ) is near you, on your lips and in your heart; that is, the Word (the message, the basis and object) of faith which we preach,
9  Because if you acknowledge and confess with your lips that Jesus is Lord and in your heart believe (adhere to, trust in, and rely on the truth) that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.
10  For with the heart a person believes (adheres to, trusts in, and relies on Christ) and so is justified (declared righteous, acceptable to God), and with the mouth he confesses (declares openly and speaks out freely his faith) and confirms [his] salvation.
11  The Scripture says, No man who believes in Him [who adheres to, relies on, and trusts in Him] will [ever] be put to shame or be disappointed.
12  [No one] for there is no distinction between Jew and Greek. The same Lord is Lord over all [of us] and He generously bestows His riches upon all who call upon Him [in faith].
13  For everyone who calls upon the name of the Lord [invoking Him as Lord] will be saved.
14  But how are people to call upon Him Whom they have not believed [in Whom they have no faith, on Whom they have no reliance]? And how are they to believe in Him [adhere to, trust in, and rely upon Him] of Whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without a preacher?
15  And how can men [be expected to] preach unless they are sent? As it is written, How beautiful are the feet of those who bring glad tidings! [How welcome is the coming of those who preach the good news of His good things!]
16  But they have not all heeded the Gospel; for Isaiah says, Lord, who has believed (had faith in) what he has heard from us?
17  So faith comes by hearing [what is told], and what is heard comes by the preaching [of the message that came from the lips] of Christ (the Messiah Himself).

 

 

When It’s Good to be Salty

Salt and Light for Jesus

Daily Spirit & Word 576:

When it’s GOOD to be SALTY.

As many of you know, I served in the Royal Navy for 17 1/2 years. That half year is so important, because the last six months was really difficult. I had to come to terms with the fact that I was leaving, I wanted to leave, but there were things that you just get so used to in the Navy. There are privileges that no one, except another Matelot, would understand. You get an I.D card when you join up and that gives you instant access into any and every Naval base and establishment, but when you leave you’ve got to hand back your I.D. Card and keeping it as souvenir, memento or keepsake is not an option.

As a Christian we’ve also got a kind of I.D. Card too, it gives us instant access into the presence of God. It’s instantly recognisable by Heaven and from the moment we have it God sees us as one of His own. What is it? It’s the robe of righteousness, when we are wearing that robe all Father God can see is His Son Jesus Christ. We are totally righteous in His sight, our sins are covered over in the Love of God, washed away and cleansed, He sees us as we are in Jesus; Holy, Good and Salt and Light. Therefore we’ve got access into His presence and we can come before Him with joy and boldness. No one, but a true Christian, can understand the privilege it is to have this robe of righteousness.

After I left, there was no going back, no getting into the Establishments. No amount of pleading with the gate staff would enable me to gain entrance, without an I.D card I was just like every other civilian. However, when we are given our robe of righteousness, we’ll never have to hand it back again, we can keep it forever.

Isaiah 61:10 “I delight greatly in the LORD; my soul rejoices in my God. For he has clothed me with garments of salvation and arrayed me in a robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom adorns his head like a priest, and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.” 

This was a verse that I sang on many occasions in the depths of the sea on a Submarine. In the heat and sweat of the Engine room or Reactor Compartment, I’d be singing my heart out to the Lord at the top of my voice. You know my friends, when you sing something over and over and over again, instead of the tune getting boring, the truth begins to impact your soul.

  • You can DELIGHT in the LORD!
  • Your Soul will REJOICE!
  • He’s CLOTHED you, you are not naked anymore. You are clothed in righteousness. Think about that one for a moment, Adam hid in the garden to cover his shameful nakedness, but once you are righteous in the LORD you don’t need to hide any longer you can just come out of hiding and boldly come before the LORD, because He has clothed you in His righteousness.
  • He has CLOTHED you with GARMENTS of SALVATION: Once you come to put your faith and trust in the Lord Jesus Christ, once you’ve REPENTED and RECEIVED Him as Lord and Saviour, you take on His garments of SALVATION and His ROBE of RIGHTEOUSNESS.

Now sing it again: “I delight, greatly, in the LORD. I delight, greatly, in the LORD” Now ask yourself why you are delighting in the LORD? “Because He has clothed me with garments of SALVATION” and “Because He has ARRAYED me in a ROBE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS”.

Now can you see why I’d emerge from the depths of the heat of the Reactor Compartment energised. No I’d not be contaminated with radiation 🙂 No it’s wasn’t getting those rays into my soul, but the JOY of the Lord came flooding in and when I came out it was obvious to everyone. I’ll never forget the looks on their faces.

Another time, when in the Engine room, we’d been cleaning up and oil spill and it was dirty and hot, but after singing praises to the Lord I emerged onto the platform where everyone gathered for a rest and a cup of tea, and they stopped and looked at me in astonishment. I was full of joy and energy in the LORD and it was obvious to them all.

One Chief, my superior at the time, came and asked me, “Ginge, how can you be so happy with such a (swear-word) job?”

“Everybody else came out of that Engine room moaning and complaining about the heat, the mess and feeling horrible being covered in oil, but you are literally beaming with glee, what gives?”

I said, “Chief, I was singing to Jesus and the job became a delight”. He scratched his head.

There is a saying in the Navy, “Salty old sea dog” it’s used for someone who’s been in the Service for a long time and knows a thing or too about the Navy. My friends, when you get to know Jesus, after years of hardships and service in His Kingdom, you’ll get the title SALTY old Christian. Jesus said, “You are the SALT of the earth” and “You are the LIGHT of the world”

Matthew 5:13-16

13 “You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled by men. 
14  “You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden.
15  Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house.
16  In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.

You too may be having a hard time, you might be toiling at a meaningless job, you may be experiencing the heat and no matter how hard you try, you can’t get out of the situation. Rejoice, praise, pray and sing to Jesus; His LOVE will lift you up. His presence will come into your heart and soul and you’ll be a shining light for everyone to see. Sing the song, “I delight, greatly in the Lord, my soul rejoices in my God. For He has clothed me in garments of Salvation and arrayed me in a robe of Righteousness” you’ll be coming into the throne room of Heaven. You’ll be transformed and the toil and hardship will seem as nothing.

Jesus wants you to be SALTY and make a difference in the world, He’s given you access into the throne room of Heaven and when you come before Him, clothed in His Salvation and robed in His Righteousness, you’ll be full of delight and you’ll sing His praises. Let’s be SALTY for Him and let the LIGHT shine from our faces today for Jesus.

It’s good to be SALTY sometimes.

Don.

 

Desiring To Become A Prophet

The Holy Spirit On All People

Daily Spirit & Word 575:

Do you desire to become a Prophet of the LORD?

It’s amazing, you know when you are reading the Bible and come across it’s great characters that were used by the LORD in wonderful ways, do you ever get a hunger or desire to be like them for the LORD today? Think about Moses or Joshua or King David and Solomon, how the LORD used them: Think about Samuel, Elijah and Elisha and how the LORD used them: Think about Deborah, Esther, Elizabeth, Mary, Phoebe, Lydia and Chloe and how the LORD used them. These people are just a few, but think about down through history and how the LORD has powerfully used individuals to influence the times in which they lived. In each era of human history the LORD has chosen and anointed many thousands of people to become an influence for good, in such a way that countless thousands of others have been encouraged and inspired to become more holy, righteous and good themselves. Because of the way they’ve lived, people are hungering and thirsting to get to know the LORD Jesus Christ even long after their death:

Think about modern times, who’s recently been used by the LORD as an influence on a world-wide scale for good, that even non-Christians know about them? Billy Graham, C.S. Lewis, Reinhard Bonnke.

The Bible (God’s Word) reveals that before the advent of the Lord Jesus Christ’s appearing, it was only certain individuals who were possessed by the Holy Spirit to prophesy and influence their world for good and for God’s glory, but long before Jesus came, one of those Prophets of the Lord tells us a time will come when everyone will become a prophet.

The Day of The LORD:

Joel 2:28-32 28 “And afterwards, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your old men will dream dreams, your young men will see visions.
29  Even on my servants, both men and women, I will pour out my Spirit in those days.
30  I will show wonders in the heavens and on the earth, blood and fire and billows of smoke.
31  The sun will be turned to darkness and the moon to blood before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD.

32  And everyone who calls on the name of the LORD will be saved; for on Mount Zion and in Jerusalem there will be deliverance, as the LORD has said, among the survivors whom the LORD calls. 

By this prophesy Joel was forthtelling or foretelling the future. Forthtelling = the immediate future and foretelling speaks about the distant future. Joel was doing both in his prophetic utterances. Sometimes the prophet was aware of this and sometimes unaware that he was being used by the LORD.

We can see a two-fold foretelling unfolding from Joel’s prophesy: When he declared that there would be signs in the heavens and on the earth; you would think it’s all to do with the signs that accompanied the arrival and birth of our Saviour in Bethlehem: The Star followed by the wise men from the East. The miraculous pregnancy of Mary and Elizabeth. The Angels appearing to Shepherds and their vision of Heaven. However, we also see it being unfolded in the lives of the Apostles after Jesus returned to Heaven: The Day of Pentecost when Peter and the other disciples began to prophesy and thousands came to trust in the Saviour.

Peter said about that incident: (It’s quite a long reading, but please don’t rush it, take time over the words and ask the LORD to be speaking to you today as you read them again). The PROMISED HOLY SPIRIT.

Acts 2:14-41

14 Then Peter stood up with the Eleven, raised his voice and addressed the crowd: “Fellow Jews and all of you who live in Jerusalem, let me explain this to you; listen carefully to what I say.
15  These men are not drunk, as you suppose. It’s only nine in the morning! 16  No, this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel: 
17  ” ‘In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions, your old men will dream dreams. 
18  Even on my servants, both men and women, I will pour out my Spirit in those days, and they will prophesy. 
19  I will show wonders in the heaven above and signs on the earth below, blood and fire and billows of smoke. 
20  The sun will be turned to darkness and the moon to blood before the coming of the great and glorious day of the Lord. 
21  And everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.’ 

22  “Men of Israel, listen to this: Jesus of Nazareth was a man accredited by God to you by miracles, wonders and signs, which God did among you through him, as you yourselves know. 23  This man was handed over to you by God’s set purpose and foreknowledge; and you, with the help of wicked men, put him to death by nailing him to the cross. 24  But God raised him from the dead, freeing him from the agony of death, because it was impossible for death to keep its hold on him.

25  David said about him: ” ‘I saw the Lord always before me. Because he is at my right hand, I will not be shaken. 
26  Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices; my body also will live in hope, 27  because you will not abandon me to the grave, nor will you let your Holy One see decay. 28  You have made known to me the paths of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence.’ 

29  “Brothers, I can tell you confidently that the patriarch David died and was buried, and his tomb is here to this day.
30  But he was a prophet and knew that God had promised him on oath that he would place one of his descendants on his throne. 31  Seeing what was ahead, he spoke of the resurrection of the Christ, that he was not abandoned to the grave, nor did his body see decay. 32  God has raised this Jesus to life, and we are all witnesses of the fact. 33  Exalted to the right hand of God, he has received from the Father the promised Holy Spirit and has poured out what you now see and hear. 34  For David did not ascend to heaven, and yet he said, ” ‘The Lord said to my Lord: “Sit at my right hand 35  until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet.” ‘ 

36  “Therefore let all Israel be assured of this: God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Christ.” 
37  When the people heard this, they were cut to the heart and said to Peter and the other apostles, “Brothers, what shall we do?” 
38  Peter replied, “Repent and be baptised, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.
39  The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off—for all whom the Lord our God will call.” 
40  With many other words he warned them; and he pleaded with them, “Save yourselves from this corrupt generation.”
41  Those who accepted his message were baptised, and about three thousand were added to their number that day.

The PROMISE:

My friends, this is a promise from the LORD: When you REPENT AND TRUST in the LORD Jesus Christ and get Baptised in His Name for the forgiveness of your sins, then you too will receive the promised gift of the Holy Spirit and you too will begin to prophesy (proclaim the Word of the Lord).

We always think that Prophesy is foretelling future events, but sometimes it’s just forthtelling (in a Spirit inspired and gifted way) what’s about to happen immediately or what is already happening. God gives Spiritual insight to those whom He has called, both men and women, young and old, WOWzer!

Like King David, who was probably not fully aware of the significance of his words, he was used by the LORD thousands of years beforehand to proclaim future events. You too may be used by the LORD in that way, but more importantly, you are going to be used by the Holy Spirit to be an influence for good in your own time. He’s going to give you His gift to prophesy and proclaim God’s Word in your own generation.

My friends, if you are a believer in the Lord Jesus Christ today, then you ARE a prophet of the LORD, just like the prophets of old. Now do you believe that? Do you accept that He’s going to use you? Are you ready and willing to be used by the Lord in such ways?

Prayer:

Have an awesome weekend, I’m praying that many more believers will recognise their high calling and be used by the Lord to be an influence for good in the home, the workplace, school, college, university, offices, streets and in the neighbourhoods. May people look upon your life and see the good that you are doing and glorify your Father in Heaven. When you open your mouth to speak, speak God’s Word in your time, Oh Holy Spirit please use us ALL today. Amen!

Be blessed today,

Don.

 

The Bible is the Menu, but Jesus is the Meal.

Foreign language is the Bible without the Spirit of God

Daily Spirit & Word 574: A Foreign Language Menu.

The Bible is the menu, but Jesus is the meal.

Have you ever been to a restaurant where the menu is in a foreign language? You don’t want to appear ignorant or foolish, so you sit pretending to know what it means, you look at what other people are eating at the tables all around you, when the waiter comes to ask for your order, you’ll say, “I’ll have one of those please” pointing to a good looking plate of food being eaten by one of the other customers 🙂 LOL Well, I’ve not really gone that far, but I’ve felt like it. Most of the time I’ll ask the waiter to explain the menu as I can’t understand the language.

For the person without the Holy Spirit, the Bible is just like that menu. It’s written in English and on the surface can be read by anybody, and to some degree understood by most, but the ‘real’ and ‘true’ interpretation of God’s Word is by His Holy Spirit, because the things of the Spirit (which is what God’s WORD is) are foolishness to the man without the Spirit. It really is like reading a French menu when you can’t speak a word of the French language. Why? Because the Bible is written in ‘Spirit’ language that can only be fully understood by the person who’s possessed by God’s Holy Spirit.

1 Corinthians 2:9-14  “However, as it is written: “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him”— 10  but God has revealed it to us by his Spirit. The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God.
11  For who among men knows the thoughts of a man except the man’s spirit within him? In the same way no-one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God.
12  We have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit who is from God, that we may understand what God has freely given us. 13  This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, expressing spiritual truths in spiritual words. 14  The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned.”

 

“The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God”

Whilst I was still quite young as a Christian I was given the privilege of hosting and leading a Home Bible Study Group, I was too young still as a Christian, because I remember getting quite upset by one individual in the group who just couldn’t grasp something that was so simple. However, I’d forgotten what it was like for myself, when I first started attending church before I was born of God’s Holy Spirit. There were things, many things, that I just couldn’t grasp and I had so many unasked and unanswered questions. Praise the LORD that He was in those early meetings and He reminded me of the grace and kindness that was afforded me from those who were mature in the faith, whenever I came out with something silly. Instead of jumping on me and correcting my errors, they’d just nod their heads and say, “That’s so interesting, I’ve never thought of it that way before”. Then when I got home and prayed, the Lord would show me the simple error from His Word, I remember being physically embarrassed by my foolishness, I went beetroot red in the face 🙂 and I was on my own, well, not quite, because the Lord was with me. So at the next Bible meeting I had to confess to the group my foolishness, they just smiled and said, “We KNEW the LORD would show you”… How did they know? They were mature, they’d prayed for me when I gone home, they’d brought my folly to the LORD and asked Him to show me the error of my ways, and guess what, HE DID.

“The Man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God” And from experience I can confess that those who are young in the faith find it difficult too. Further, there are those amongst every group of Christians that remain babes in Christ, they don’t grow up or onto maturity in the Spirit. Why? There are many reasons, but the primary reasons, I believe, is because they don’t develop Spiritual Disciplines: i.e. they don’t pray every day (and I don’t mean a quick prayer on the bus on the way to work), they don’t STUDY their Bible on their own, they don’t seek out SPIRITUAL encounters, they simply attend church and get spoon-fed every Sunday, and before long they’re drifting away from the faith. Why? Because they’ve remained babes in Christ, they’re saved, but remain immature and foolish.

It’s horrible, but I’ve seen countless brilliant people, very clever people from a worldly perspective, with great intellect, but who’ve wandered from the faith, because they didn’t do the basics and grow to Christian maturity. Discipleship is so important, we must remember that Jesus didn’t command us to go and make converts, but disciples. For far too long sincere Bible believing Evangelicals, Charismatics, Pentecostals and Baptists have made the mistake of getting people to make a ‘decision’ for Christ and then leaving them all on their own to work out their faith. Jesus didn’t call us to make converts, but Disciples. It’s NOT a numbers game, but a growth towards maturity campaign that He’s give us.

Here’s something from the Holy Spirit today: If you are born of God’s Spirit then I’m sure you’ll receive this: “If you are not gathering together on a regular basis with other brothers and sisters in the Kingdom family of the Lord Jesus Christ to pray, study God’s Word together and worship and serve the LORD together, then you are NOT growing towards maturity the way the Christ wants you to”

Here’s something else: “If you are not praying daily, feeding upon God’s Word and seeking the fullness of God’s Spirit, you’ll not be growing the way God wants you to grow”.

Listen to what Jesus said: John 6:52-58 52  Then the Jews began to argue sharply among themselves, “How can this man give us his flesh to eat?” 

53  Jesus said to them, “I tell you the truth, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. 54  Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. 55  For my flesh is real food and my blood is real drink. 56  Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in him. 57  Just as the living Father sent me and I live because of the Father, so the one who feeds on me will live because of me. 58  This is the bread that came down from heaven. Your forefathers ate manna and died, but he who feeds on this bread will live for ever.”

Don’t become like the Pharisees who made Scripture study a practice to gain knowledge and understanding, Christians feed upon God’s Word to EXPERIENCE Christ, not just to gain knowledge. As Jack Deer has said in his book, Surprised by the Voice of God: “The Bible is the menu and Jesus Christ is the meal” and “If our Bible study doesn’t lead us to an experience of Jesus Christ then we are like the Pharisees who were holding the menu, reading the menu and studying the menu, but they were so far from the meal” Page 175.

You see my friends, the HOLY SPIRIT wants you to really experience the fullness of life today that those early believers in Jesus did. When you avail yourself of all that He’s provided for your growth towards maturity; prayer, Bible, fellowship, study, praise, adoration and evangelism, then you’ll be growing stronger in the power of the Spirit day by day. Those things that seem hard for you to fathom, difficult like fighting against a tornado today, they will become as a breeze in the Spirit. He’s going to be opening up the Bible like never before, and He’ll also be giving you Gospel opportunities that you never expected.

So my friends, gather with the brothers and sisters to get into God’s Word, to worship and pray together, to sing praises to the Lord, to minister to each other and then to serve the Lord Jesus Christ in the world together. Like Barnabas and Saul, who were set-apart by the Holy Spirit: He’ll also be sending you out on His missions in the world today.

My message today might be like a foreign language to you: Like a French menu when you don’t speak French. I’ve no doubt that some will be left scratching their heads, but those who’ve been born of God’s Spirit will be moved, they’ll be encouraged and if needed they’ll have been given a timely (gentle) kick-up-the-backside to get back into fellowship in a serious and committed way.

It doesn’t matter how long you’ve been a Christian or how mature you think you are because of your Bible knowledge, you NEED fellowship with other brothers and sisters in Christ. Also, you can bet your Spiritual life upon it, there will be others in the fellowship / Bible Study or Growth Group that you join who’ll be needing your maturity and knowledge. The LORD didn’t call us to be Lone-Ranger believers, but even the Lone Ranger had his Tonto 🙂 We need fellowship like a good Chicken Korma needs Pilau Rice :-)… or an authentic West Indian Curry needs rice-n-peas… or an traditional English Roast needs roast potatoes and three vegetables 🙂

Hebrews 10:23-25  “Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.
24  And let us consider how we may spur one another on towards love and good deeds.
25  Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.”

Praise the LORD for the way He moves to get us to grow towards maturity in Christ. Remember the Bible is the Menu, but Jesus is the meal (bread of Heaven) and we feed upon Him by the Holy Spirit that He gave to us.

Follow the menu, the Bible is the Christian menu, but we need to learn it’s language, the language of the Holy Spirit to be able to eat the meal contained within, but always remember that Jesus is the meal, so don’t be like the Pharisees who were so close, they had the menu in their hands yet remained so far away from the delights and treats contained within. Amen!

Don.

 

The Chains Fell Off.

Peter's Chains Fell Off

Daily Spirit & Word 573: The Chains Fell Off.

When you are feeling under pressure, when you know things are looking bleak, there is ONE who can and will help you my friends; you too can sit back and watch those chains fall off:

Acts 12:1-18 
1 It was about this time that King Herod arrested some who belonged to the church, intending to persecute them.
2  He had James, the brother of John, put to death with the sword.
3  When he saw that this pleased the Jews, he proceeded to seize Peter also. This happened during the Feast of Unleavened Bread.
4  After arresting him, he put him in prison, handing him over to be guarded by four squads of four soldiers each. Herod intended to bring him out for public trial after the Passover. 
5  So Peter was kept in prison, but the church was earnestly praying to God for him. 
6  The night before Herod was to bring him to trial, Peter was sleeping between two soldiers, bound with two chains, and sentries stood guard at the entrance.
7  Suddenly an angel of the Lord appeared and a light shone in the cell. He struck Peter on the side and woke him up. “Quick, get up!” he said, and the chains fell off Peter’s wrists. 
8  Then the angel said to him, “Put on your clothes and sandals.” And Peter did so. “Wrap your cloak around you and follow me,” the angel told him.
9  Peter followed him out of the prison, but he had no idea that what the angel was doing was really happening; he thought he was seeing a vision.
10  They passed the first and second guards and came to the iron gate leading to the city. It opened for them by itself, and they went through it. When they had walked the length of one street, suddenly the angel left him. 
11  Then Peter came to himself and said, “Now I know without a doubt that the Lord sent his angel and rescued me from Herod’s clutches and from everything the Jewish people were anticipating.” 
12  When this had dawned on him, he went to the house of Mary the mother of John, also called Mark, where many people had gathered and were praying.
13  Peter knocked at the outer entrance, and a servant girl named Rhoda came to answer the door.
14  When she recognised Peter’s voice, she was so overjoyed she ran back without opening it and exclaimed, “Peter is at the door!” 
15  “You’re out of your mind,” they told her. When she kept insisting that it was so, they said, “It must be his angel.” 
16  But Peter kept on knocking, and when they opened the door and saw him, they were astonished.
17  Peter motioned with his hand for them to be quiet and described how the Lord had brought him out of prison. “Tell James and the brothers about this,” he said, and then he left for another place. 
18  In the morning, there was no small commotion among the soldiers as to what had become of Peter.

 

Herod was the horrible puppet king, but he didn’t even think that Peter and the new believers were trusting another KING. Their KING was no ordinary king though, because Jesus has something written upon his robe and thigh:

Revelation 19:16  “On his robe and on his thigh he has this name written: KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS.”

What’s written upon His robe? “KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS.”

What’s written upon His thigh? KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS.”

My friends, even when you’ve been handed a death sentence, when the bills are piling up, when your enemies are out to get you, when your family and friends don’t treat you the way you want, when you loose your job and you have a mortgage; Oh my friends, get a handle upon this, because when Peter was facing certain death, he fell asleep peacefully. He was behind iron gates, between soldier guards and in chains, but he fell asleep.

He was heavily guarded: He slept.

He was in prison: He slept.

He was in chains: He slept.

Peter was able to SLEEP, but why? Because He’d already died, He was now living for Jesus.

My brother remineded me today about his baptism, on the day he was baptised with my sister and the JOY of the New LIFE. He heard the congregation singing this song, “Up from the grave he arose”… WOWzer! You are alive after death in baptism.

My friends, when you got baptised into the Lord Jesus, you died to your old life and are now resting in the LORD to live a NEW LIFE. So no matter what the circumstances may be: You are living for The “KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS.”

Every earthly king will one day bow before HIM.

Every knee will bow and tongue confess HIM as LORD.

TRUST HIM and watch what happens to those problems as the CHAINS FALL OFF.

No prison can hold you:

No gates can keep you locked in:

No guards can keep you:

No chains can bind you:

You are FREE in Christ Jesus: Let those chains fall off, the gates open and guards struck dumb, walk free in Jesus Christ today.

LIVE today for the LORD. No matter what: You too can be a peace and rest in the Lord.

“KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS” Amen!

Don.