You Are Wonderfully Made By God

When God made you, He didn't make a mistake, you are beautiful to God

Daily Spirit & Word: 763:

You Are Wonderfully Made by God.

PART 3:

Psalm 139:13-18

 

You might find this hard to believe my friends, but it’s true; YOU ARE WONDERFUL. Don’t let anybody tell you any differently, don’t even think about changing the way you’ve been made, because God likes you just the way He made you. In fact He loves you just as you are. Nothing you could do could ever stop God loving you.

Psalm 139:13-18 (NIV)
13  For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
14  I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.
15  My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth,
16  your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.
17  How precious to me are your thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them!
18  Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand. When I awake, I am still with you.

God Made YOU Wonderfully—You Can’t Ignore Him (vv. 13-18)

These are the most wonderful words ever written about the miracle of human conception, pregnancy and birth.

When a little baby is being formed, we don’t think too much about how big it is, but when you see the most modern 3D scans, you simply marvel. One of the ladies in our church came back and showed me the picture of the baby in her womb, I didn’t look at the picture too much, but I saw the look on her face “MARVEL and JOY”…

In this Psalm King David revealed something AWESOME: God’s not just watching us being formed in the womb, He’s the ONE who’s doing the knitting together. Think about that, God made Adam and Eve right? But He has never stopped at Adam and Eve, He’s continuing to MAKE (Form, Weave, Knit) every single creature on the Earth even today. It’s God who’s doing all the knitting together.

  1. YOU ARE MADE BY GOD:

“You knit me together in my mother’s womb”.

Did you know that?

You are knitted by the LORD (The Word “Knitted” in this Psalm is also translated as “Woven” in other parts of the Bible).

When something is woven, when you weave something, it takes time, care, dedication and skill. No wonder King David said “I am fearfully and wonderfully made” He must have been thinking about his own hands, his own articulation, the way he can move his fingers, hands, feet, head, eyes, tongue. How he can see, smell, taste, touch and hear. How he can think, know and understand this world. When you think about HOW humans are made (Woven and Knitted) and what we’re capable of just to survive in this hostile world, we MARVEL as King David did.

Every child ever conceived is MADE IN THE IMAGE OF GOD, even today.

Genesis 1:27 (NIV) “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.”

That’s why we can’t commit murder or take another human life (except for the reasons that God gives us in His Word). It most certainly rules out abortion because that infant is inconvenient at this moment in time. Have you ever noticed that when someone wants to kill the baby in the womb, they don’t call it a baby, they call it a foetus? Nobody bats an eyelid when someone has an abortion today. They’ve taken the preciousness out of LIFE.

The focus today is upon the Mother’s human rights, because it’s her body. Because it’s her body she has the right to do with it what she wants. Well, is that TRUE? We’ve got to ask that question today? Is that woman’s body her own? NO! It’s not. It’s not true at all my friends, it’s not her body, because her body belongs to God. You belong to God because He made you and you are His.

Psalm 100:3 (NIV) “Know that the LORD is God. It is he who made us, and we are his; we are his people, the sheep of his pasture.”

So EVERY baby belongs to God. Every woman belongs to God. Every man, boy, girl, baby belongs to God. You are HIS, you belong to HIM, because HE made you. Therefore the TRUTH is, because you are HIS you don’t have any right to do what you want with your own body. You can only DO what HE gives you permission to do.

When you understand and know and submit to this TRUTH: there’s wonderful FREEDOM, SECURITY and JOY in this precious and awesome life He’s give you.

So if God was there in the forming of your life, He made you, you belong to Him, why did He make you?

2) WHY DID GOD MAKE YOU?

Probably the biggest question human beings ever ask: “Why on earth am I here?”

The LORD has a very special purpose for each human life that is formed and fashioned in the womb.

Think about your family and friends, every one of them is different and unique, they each have skills and abilities that are special to them. Praise God for the amazing diversity in His Creation. However, when you stand back and look at human beings as you would a Gorilla, you think they are all the same, they are NOT. Even monkeys and apes have their own personality. Dogs are all different and so are human beings.

  • Go to any Dairy Farmer and he’ll tell you the personality traits of each and every one of his cows.
  • Go to a Horse Stables: The stable hand will tell you “Every Horse has it’s own traits and personality”.
  • Go visit Battersea Dog’s home, the Staff will tell you the traits of personality of every dog they look after.

My friends, EVERY CREATURE that God makes, has it’s OWN UNIQUE PERSONALITY: LIFE is precious, so precious to God. He makes EVERY CREATURE INDIVIDUALLY.

When we accept this TRUTH, we discover we don’t need to be like someone else. We are made just the way God wants us to be.

God formed us as He wants us to be, and we’ve just got to accept His will, you might not like the way God made you, but look again, because you are BEAUTIFUL to HIM, He loves you just the way you are. You don’t need to change a thing about the way you look because to God, you are PERFECT.

So that removes the temptation to compare ourselves with others or think they are better than us, because you are the way God made you to be. When you can accept that TRUTH, guess what comes into your hearts?

  • PEACE about who you are.
  • JOY about yourself.
  • LOVE because God loves the way He’s made you.
  • CONTENTMENT: You don’t need to change the way you look.
  • PURPOSE: Because of HOW He’s made you, the skills He’s given you, you can use your LIFE for His Glory.

I was so touched the other day when I heard about a man born with short arms and legs, Brian Gault (Google it). “Look, No Hands”

He was a Thalidomide Baby: But He gives thanks and praise to the LORD.

Yes it was because of a DRUG he was malformed, but He knows God made him and put him together in a very special and wonderful way.

You too have been formed by God: So THANK HIM for the way He made you. Live joyfully knowing He loves you. Be contented because you don’t need to change a thing. If someone is putting pressure on you to CHANGE, just tell them, “God made me just the way I am, and I’m happy with that”… Say to yourself “God LOVE me, because He made me who I am”…

3) YOUR DAYS ARE NUMBERED.

God didn’t just put you together and design you the way you are; He also knows exactly how long you’ve got left on this earth, because each day of your life is written in His book of life.

Psalm 139:16  “Your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.”

This includes the length of life (Job 14:5)

Job 14:5 (NIV) “Man’s days are determined; you have decreed the number of his months and have set limits he cannot exceed.”

The tasks He wants us to perform (Eph. 2:10; Phil. 2:12-13).

Ephesians 2:10 (NIV) “For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”

Philippians 2:12-13 (NIV) Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed—not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence; continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, 13  for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose.

You are NOT a Robot: You are not a computer program with a pre-determined set of instructions that you must perform as God designed. No my friends, He made you like Himself with a free will, but know this DEEPER TRUTH, God did create you because of HIS LOVE. He loves you enough to let you live in freedom. However, that doesn’t mean we can just live as we choose, He set limits on how we should live on the earth, because you are precious to Him, He cares for you and doesn’t want any harm to come to a single soul that He’s taken the time to make, to knit, to weave. However, God also takes a risk, He wants us to live and enjoy life and choose to live in that freedom within the bounds He’s set.

If we live foolishly, we might die before the time God has ordained. We might loose our right to live by choosing to abuse the privilege of the freedom in this precious life.

Because our days are NUMBERED let’s live them as God wants, because one day we’re going to meet Him and give an account for how we’ve used the gift of life He gave us.

4) IGNORANT OF GOD

Many people today choose to live in ignorance of God. Claiming they KNOW there is no God. They proudly call themselves Atheists (People without a God). or People without a belief in God. When the Bible calls men and woman who believe this “FOOLISH”, he didn’t mean without intelligence, because many Atheists are the most intelligent people on the earth today. However, God means foolish in the sense that they KNOW better. or they SHOULD KNOW BETTER.

It’s like a child being warned not to touch a hot surface because they’ll get burned. They put their hand close and feel the heat, but does that stop them? No! Why? Because they are foolish, they reach out their hand and get burned. An Atheist is ignorant of God on purpose and that’s what’s foolish. That’s why God says;

Psalm 14:1-3 (NIV)
1  [For the director of music. Of David.] The fool says in his heart, “There is no God.” They are corrupt, their deeds are vile; there is no-one who does good.
2  The LORD looks down from heaven on the sons of men to see if there are any who understand, any who seek God.
3  All have turned aside, they have together become corrupt; there is no-one who does good, not even one.

All the evidence for Gravity has been with us since Creation, but it took Sir Isaac Newton to define the Law of Gravity. He didn’t invent Gravity, He just gave it a name. My friends can you imagine anyone ever saying, “I don’t believe in Gravity because I’ve never seen it”… How foolish that would be. Just as Gravity is REAL, so is God. He made the whole universe as a PROOF that there is a Creator.

If you know someone who’s a proud Atheist, then just tell them to stop being foolish, because they KNOW there is a God. They are just being ignorant on purpose. (Denial is not Just a River).

Romans 1:18-20 (NIV)
18  The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of men who suppress the truth by their wickedness,
19  since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them.
20  For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men (human beings) are without excuse.

Just one look at Creation tells you there must be a Creator.

Just one look at you fingerprint, your eye, your hair, and you’ll know, “this couldn’t have happened by accident”. You’ll KNOW as King David did, “I am fearfully and wonderfully made”. I can just imagine King David, looking at his fingers as he’s composing this Psalm, marveling at their articulation, bending his wrist and arm and thinking “WOWzer! You did a great job Father God. I truly am fearfully and wonderfully made”…

5) What God KNOWS.

Finally, when King David thought about ALL THAT GOD KNOWS, he considered himself a fool in comparison.

Psalm 139:17-18:
17  How precious to me are your thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them!
18  Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand. When I awake, I am still with you.

This picture language of King David here is, “Every grain of sand is like just one of God’s precious thoughts” I know I’ll try and count them, One, two, three, four,,,, He falls asleep, He falls asleep trying to count the grains of sand… Then He wakes up and discovers something AWESOME “When I awayke, I am still with you”….

God is still there my friend. He’s with King David when he awakes from his effort to count all of God’s thoughts.

My friends, we cannot FATHOM God, we can’t MEASURE Him: But we can KNOW HIM.

You too can KNOW that God is right here with you today. He’s right beside you, but He wants to be even close than that: He wants to be IN YOU…

Have you experienced the PRESENCE of God in your life today?

YOU CAN: If you’ll just stop trying to figure God out, stop doubting, stop trying to limit God by your human endeavour to know HIM. He’s there, accept it, believe it and know it.

CONCLUSION:

No my friends, God made you, you are HIS, you are fearfully and wonderfully MADE.

When He made you in His Image: He made a perfect soul, with your own personality, your own traits and nature, you are individually and specially crafted by God and He’s given you the breath of life for His purposes. Each day of your life is written in His book of life before even one of them begins.

I’m reminded by a saying that Daniel Cozens used, “I’m not what I should be, I’m not what I could be, I’m not what I will be, but by the grace of God, I am what I am”.

My friends, you are not an accident, you were knitted by God on purpose and for His LOVE.

Praise the LORD today for the way He made you. God doesn’t make mistakes, so go and look in your mirror at home and say to the LORD, “I just thank You Father, for making me, me”… It comes from the Childrens Hymn “If I were a Butterfly”… There’s so much awesome TRUTH in some of our Schoolchildren’s Hymns.

Chorus: (If I were a Butterfly).
For you gave me a heart, And you gave me a smile,
You gave me Jesus, And You made me Your child,
Oh I Just thank you Father, for making me, me.

You are wonderfully made by God.

Praise the LORD!

Don.

HOW TO KNOW GOD: 

Kind David was a man who was filled and anointed by the Holy Spirit of God. He KNEW God personally. You too can discover the amazing power and presence of God and be filled to overflowing with Holy Spirit.

KNOWING GOD PERSONALLY

Psalm 139: Part 1: God Knows Me Intimately.

Psalm 139: Part 2: God Will NEVER Let Go of My Hand.

Psalm 139: Part 3: God Made Me Wonderfully

 

 

He’ll NEVER Let Go of Your Hand.

once you come to Jesus, He'll never let you go.

Daily Spirit & Word 762: 

He’ll NEVER Let Go of Your Hand.

God Is EVERYWHERE.
Part 2: God Is Always With You: You Can’t Get Away From Him (Psalm 139:7-12).
 
Good morning my friends, the title today begs the question, “Why would anyone want to get away from God?”
I don’t know about you, but there have been times in my life since I began following Jesus as my Lord and Saviour, that I’ve wanted to try and hide from God. I know that sounds strange, but bear with me. It has been when I know that I’ve sinned and just like Adam and Eve, I’ve wanted to try and cover it up, not face responsibility for it, deny it, blame someone or something else for doing it. But King David reveals an astonishing truth in these few verses from the 139th Psalm, there is nowhere we can ever go in all Creation to get away and hide from the LORD.

YOU CAN’T GET AWAY FROM GOD

Psalm 139:7-12 (NIV)
7  Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence?
8  If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.
9  If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea,
10  even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast.
11  If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me and the light become night around me,”
12  even the darkness will not be dark to you; the night will shine like the day, for darkness is as light to you.
 You see my friends, King David has done what we’ve all tried to do, to HIDE his sin from the LORD. He discovered the HARD WAY that nothing is hidden from the eyes of the all seeing, all knowing and ever present LORD of Creation.

However, it is a NATURAL tendency to try and HIDE from God.

God has given every human being a CONSCIENCE: The conscience is like an implant that God has put within the human soul, so that we KNOW when we’re about to do something wrong.
REVERSING SENSORS: Modern Cars have proximity sensors, they tell you with an alarm when you are getting too close to another car or a wall or some obstruction. The beep get louder and more frequent the closer you get to the car behind when you’re parking. It’s an amazing little invention, it’s saved my precious car many times. Those little sensors warn of imminent danger.
So does your CONSCIENCE: Con means with and Science means knowledge. When we sin we do it with knowledge, because our God given con-science is sounding a warning of imminent danger. It’s telling you, “You are about to cross over the line, you are going the wrong way, you are about to SIN”…. It gets louder the closer we get to actually sinning. However, the Conscience can be ignored and once we’ve sinned a few times, it gets even easier to ignore, until the time when we can barely detect it’s alarm. (Note: If you are feeling guilty because of some sin, then there’s no need to worry, because your CONSCIENCE is working fine, just listen to it and obey it).
So, when we SIN we know it. When we SIN we try to hide it from God. But God KNOWS… What’s amazing is that God KNOWS and still LOVES you.
He’s still longing to reach out and save and grab hold of you and guide you back into His best ways.
Every WAY we try to HIDE from God is FUTILE:
Psalm 139:11-12
11  If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me and the light become night around me,”
12  even the darkness will not be dark to you; the night will shine like the day, for darkness is as light to you.
Because He’s EVERYWHERE, can SEE EVERYTHING, even in the deepest darkness, it’s like the bright light of noonday to HIM.  
My friends, God wants to walk with us and talk with us and guide us, because His plans for our lives are the very best. When you begin to walk with Jesus, His promise is that He’ll never loose any of those that He’s saved. He’ll never let go of your hand. He wants to save you and be with you forever.

Why should we want to run away and hide?

  • Adam and Eve tried it and failed, God knew what they had done and came looking for them (Gen 3).
  • Moses tried to get away when he committed murder,
  • Jacob tried to run away from his angry brother and responsibility for stealing and cheating his father, and brother.
  • and so did the prophet Jonah, who only went from bad to worse.
  • King David, tried to cover up; adultery, stealing another man’s wife and murder, but God sent a Prophet to reveal to David that He knew all about it.
 We ALL try and hide and cover over our sins. But God only wants what’s best for us in life, that’s why He gave us His Commandments.

Let’s face the TRUTH: We can’t get away from God. There is nowhere to HIDE from Him.

Know the TRUTH and the TRUTH shall set you FREE…

We need God’s presence with us if we want to enjoy His love and fulfill His purposes.
He’ll NEVER Let Go of Your Hand.
Repent and Believe the Good News: He’ll NEVER Let You Go.
Romans 5:8 “But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”
 
God brought Adam and Eve out of the Garden of Eden and clothed them in Animal Skin, to cover their shameful nakedness. Something had to die to cover over their SIN. We’ve been covered in the robe of righteousness, but Jesus had to die on the Cross for our sins, before we could be covered in His robe of righteousness.
“He hath clothed me in garments of Salvation,
And arrayed me in a robe of righteousness”

HOW TO GET PEACE WITH GOD?

Romans 5:1-11 (NIV)
1  Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ,
2  through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God.
3  Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance;
4  perseverance, character; and character, hope.
5  And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us.
6  You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly.
7  Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous man, though for a good man someone might possibly dare to die.
8  But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
9  Since we have now been justified by his blood, how much more shall we be saved from God’s wrath through him!
10  For if, when we were God’s enemies, we were reconciled to him through the death of his Son, how much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through his life!
11  Not only is this so, but we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.
We cannot HIDE from God: So TURN in Repentance: Trust in Christ’s Death upon the Cross for your sins. Receive His forgiveness, cleansing and covering. Amen!
You Father God wants to walk with you and talk with you and guide you, because His plans for your life are the very best. When you begin to walk with Jesus, His promise is that He’ll never loose any of those that He’s saved. He’ll never let go of your hand. His is with you every step of the way. He wants to save you and be with you forever. Stop running, stop trying to hide, turn and face the music and be with your LORD of LIFE today.
Hope you all have a FANTASTIC week with Jesus.
He’ll NEVER Let Go of Your Hand.
Don.
P.S. Why not come out and SHARE the Good News of Jesus with us on the Streets of London?
We go out on Wednesdays and tell folks the greatest news they can ever hear; “Whilst they are still sinners, God loves them”…
We promise that when you are training you won’t have to say anything, you just come and watch and learn HOW to Share your Faith. When you are feeling comfortable with it, then you can have a go yourself. It’s fun, it’s easy and you’ll see that Jesus really is ALIVE and wants people to know Him. He’s drawing people to Himself by the Holy Spirit, we’re just out there working with Him. Come and learn to share your faith the way that Jesus taught His own Disciples. We call it “The Way of The Master”… Learn to share you faith the same way that Jesus did.
Wednesdays: Gathering at 5.00pm in St Luke’s Church, West Norwood, London. SE27 0HS.
We do a little bit of training beforehand, then pray and go out and share Jesus, with Jesus.

Jesus said, “The workers are few” Will you be one of Jesus’ harvesters?

Matthew 9:35-38 (NIV)
35  Jesus went through all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the good news of the kingdom and healing every disease and sickness.
36  When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd.
37  Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few.
38  Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.”
I’m asking Jesus, the LORD of the Harvest, to bring more workers into the Harvest field.
Will you RESPOND to the call of the LORD?
He’ll NEVER Let Go of Your Hand.

God Knows Me Intimately

God's Knowledge of Us

Daily Spirit & Word: 761: God Knows Me

How Does God Know Us?

Psalm 139: Study 1. He Knows You Intimately.

WOWzer! Did anyone hear that THUNDER last night? I’ve not seen rain like this in years.

I don’t know about you, but I LOVE the thunder and lightning. It’s like God speaking to us in a very loud voice, but what is He saying?

Yesterday morning we had an awesome prayer gathering, during which we sang “What a mighty God we serve” I’m not kidding, HEAVEN came into our gathering. There was only a few of us, but WOWzer!

Today, I’m going to begin a short series looking at Psalm 139. It’s such a wonderful, amazing and enlightening Psalm, full of insight about how God knows us, the plans He has for us and His control of our situations, leading us to KNOW we can fully trust HIM.

Why Psalm 139?

We all make decisions every day, (Not just EU Referendum Day), but how we make them, that’s what counts. Because what we think about God and our relationship with Him determines what we think about everything else that makes up our busy little world. When we get God’s perspective right, then other people, the universe, God’s Word, God’s will, sin, faith, and obedience and our choices will lead us in the right direction. On the other hand, wrong ideas about God will ultimately lead to wrong ideas about who we are, where we should go and what we should do, and this leads us down a crooked path toward the wrong destiny. In other words, the right knowledge of God is essential to the abundant and fulfilled life the LORD wants you to have in this world, and getting you ready for life forever with Him.

King David gave us Psalm 139, his life was full of a deep knowledge and understanding of HOW the LORD directed his steps.

Psalm 139:1-6 (NIV) [For the director of music. Of David. A psalm.]
1  O LORD, you have searched me and you know me.
2  You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar.
3  You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways.
4  Before a word is on my tongue you know it completely, O LORD.
5  You hem me in—behind and before; you have laid your hand upon me.
6  Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too lofty for me to attain.

God Knows Us Intimately (vv. 1-6)

The verb “searched” means “to examine with great pain and care.” The Jewish people used this word to describe digging deep into a mine, exploring a land, and investigating a legal case.

Your friends only see the outside, but the LORD God sees your heart, and you can’t deceive Him.

Some folks in the Bible tried to deceive God:

  • Adam and Eve tried it (Gen. 3:7-24),
  • Cain tried it (Gen. 4:1-15),
  • and even David tried it (2 Sam. 11-12),
  • Ananias and Sappheria tried it too (Acts 5:1-11).

What do we discover from them? What they all discovered, that God knew all about them. He knew what they’d done and even how they’d tried to cover it up. We cannot HIDE from God. He searches and sees the HEART. King David knew this from bitter experience and Divine Grace and forgiveness.

Understand” in verse 2 means “to distinguish and discern with insight”. My friends, God’s not just making notes about your life, He’s not keeping a dossier if you confess your sins and get cleaned up, but be assured of this, if you don’t get right with God, then He is going to bring out all the records of your life.

Verse 3: “You are familiar with all my ways” He knows our ways, where we go, when we go, how we go and why we go. The habits, the little things that can either help or hinder our walk with Him.  The fact that God knows us so intimately and completely is revealed in verses 1, 2, 4, 14, and 23.

These verses reveal God’s DEEP KNOWLEDGE about EVERYTHING in our lives:

  • He knows our actions,
  • He knows our locations,
  • He knows our thoughts and words,
  • He knows our ways, and our motives.

He knows more about you than your Mobile Phone does. You know they are able to keep track of where you’ve been down to  the inch, but God’s knowledge is even more, He not only knows where you’ve been, but what you’ve been thinking when you are there.

The Eyes of the LORD (2 Chronicles 16:9).

“All things are naked and open to the eyes of Him to whom we must give account” (Heb. 4:13, nkjv).

But even more, He knows what is best for us and does all He can to guide us to go His way.

Psalm 139:5  “You hem me in: behind and before; you have laid your hand upon me.”

He hems us in behind and before and puts His hand on us to give us peace, to show us His way and to direct our steps.

That’s an awesome thought, God wants us to allow Him to show us the way.

The word translated “beset” (kjv) or “enclosed” (nasb) means “to guard a valuable object,”

God’s Guarding YOU!

So my friends, God’s all knowing, all encompassing knowledge and guidance are for your protection.

How should we respond to that?

Like King David, we should TRUST Him completely with every aspect of our lives.

In the UK: We’re all going to VOTE today on the EU Referendum, no matter how you feel or how you VOTE, God is in ultimate control.

Don’t WORRY… PRAY (first) … TRUST… VOTE: Let the LORD guide you to the right decision today.

Be blessed today,

Don.

P.S. The other day Karamoko my grandson came back into the lounge from the garden to get a spade. He was hiding his hand behind his back. Karamoko is only 2 1/2 years old, but is already showing signs of being deceitful. I said, “What have you been doing in the garden?” He said, “Nothing” hiding his hand even more… It was so funny and a dead give-away. His hands were black from playing in the mud, he knew that he shouldn’t be playing in the mud because he’s been told not to touch it a few times. But Karamoko just loves digging in the dirt…

We cannot HIDE from God.

KNOWING GOD PERSONALLY

Psalm 139: Part 1: God Knows Me Intimately.

Psalm 139: Part 2: God Will NEVER Let Go of My Hand.

Psalm 139: Part 3: God Made Me Wonderfully

 

 

The Most Shocking News

Heaven or Hell, In or Out, EU Referendum, Debate,

Daily Spirit & Word: 760: The Most Shocking News

In or Out: The EU Referendum?

Good morning my friends, I awoke at 2.00am this morning with this phrase buzzing in my head, “Headed For Hell: The Most Shocking News”… I thought, “You can’t be serious Lord, I can’t have that as a title for my daily Bible share? It would put people off forever”….

However, the most sobering news anyone can ever hear is not: “We’re now IN the EU” or “We’re now OUT of the EU”. Both of these statements are a BIG issues for folks here in the UK right now, but what would be even more shocking than either of those results is: “You Are Headed For Hell”… Imagine being told that upon waking from a good night’s slumber? Shocking isn’t it?

However, it’s TRUE: Because without some things most people are going to end up in Hell. To me that’s the most shocking revelation I’ve ever had and it’s horrible to dwell upon that truth. It’s no wonder that I was startled wide-awake this morning. I just had to get up and pray and get into God’s Word.

So two questions arise from that true statement: “You Are Headed For Hell” the questions are;

  1.  What things will make me miss Heaven and end up in Hell?
  2.  How can I avoid going to Hell?

What are those things?

  • Without Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour: You are headed for Hell.
  • Without Being Born Again of God’s Holy Spirit: You are headed for Hell.
  • If you’ve BROKEN just one of God’s Commandments: You are headed for Hell.
  • If you’ve not REPENTED of your sins: You are headed for Hell.

Now if I said that to people they’d be offended right? And quite rightly so, because they don’t believe they’ve done anything bad enough that would warrant being sent to Hell. They would quite rightly DEMAND PROOF, because it just doesn’t seem reasonable that most people will end up in Hell.

So let’s PROVE IT’S TRUE:

Because of His LOVE for human beings God sent His One and ONLY Son to die upon the Cross. Why did God do that? Because if Jesus hadn’t gone to the Cross, then every human being would die carrying the load of all their sins with them to the gates of Heaven hoping to be allowed in. Only to be greeted by the LORD with the Gates firmly shut in their faces. Why? Because SIN cuts you off from God. (See Isaiah 59:2 at bottom of page)  He cannot bear the sight of sin, He cannot tolerate it in His presence. Sinning just once in your lifetime contaminates your eternal soul with sin. No amount of good deeds will wash that sin away. There is nothing you can do to remove the stain of sin. It’s like a tattoo upon your soul. You know when you get a tattoo it’s with you for the rest of your life, unless you have it removed surgically with a laser gun. So it is with SIN, unless you have it removed by the one thing that can take your sin away, DEATH.

“The Soul that sins, it shall die”… “The wages of sin is DEATH”…

Perhaps it’s time to come back to the OLD FASHIONED PREACHING of our forefathers, for the truth is still just as true today.

What is SIN? Sin is Transgression of God’s Holy Law.

If you Google the question “What is Sin?” It will first give you the secular dictionary definitions of sin:

Noun: Sin.

  1. Estrangement from God.
  2. An act that is regarded by theologians as a transgression of God’s will
  3. Ratio of the length of the side opposite the given angle to the length of the hypotenuse of a right-angled triangle
  4. The 21st letter of the Hebrew alphabet
  5. Violent and excited activity

Verb: Sin (Sinning, Sinned).

  1. Commit a sin; violate a law of God or a moral law.
  2. Commit a faux pas or a fault or make a serious mistake.

That’s amazing, I’d never looked up SIN in a secular dictionary before, but there it is PROOF for everyone to read. SIN means ESTRANGEMENT FROM GOD. Why, because it’s an act that is a TRANSGRESSION of the will of God. WOWzer!

But there’s an even greater authority than a secular Dictionary; the Bible, God’s Word: What does the Bible say sin is?

Looking down the list of your Google Search: The third search result will be from www.gotquestions.org and they define sin from the Bible as:

Question: “What is the definition of sin?”

Answer: Sin is described in the Bible as transgression of the law of God (1 John 3:4) and rebellion against God (Deuteronomy 9:7; Joshua 1:18). Sin had its beginning with Lucifer, probably the most beautiful and powerful of the angels. Not content with his position, he desired to be higher than God, and that was his downfall, the beginning of sin (Isaiah 14:12-15). Renamed Satan, he brought sin to the human race in the Garden of Eden, where he tempted Adam and Eve with the same enticement, “you shall be like God.” Genesis 3 describes Adam and Eve’s rebellion against God and against His command. Since that time, sin has been passed down through all the generations of mankind and we, Adam’s descendants, have inherited sin from him. Romans 5:12 tells us that through Adam sin entered the world, and so death was passed on to all men because “the wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23).

BORN INTO SLAVERY TO SIN:

Through Adam, the inherent inclination to sin entered the human race, and human beings became sinners by nature. When Adam sinned, his inner nature was transformed by his sin of rebellion, bringing to him spiritual death and depravity which would be passed on to all who came after him. We are sinners not because we sin; rather, we sin because we are sinners. This passed-on depravity is known as inherited sin. Just as we inherit physical characteristics from our parents, we inherit our sinful natures from Adam. King David lamented this condition of fallen human nature in Psalm 51:5: “Surely I was sinful at birth, sinful from the time my mother conceived me.”

We’re not just born with a sin nature, we are also SLAVES to that sin nature, we cannot help but be obedient to our sinful nature.

John 8:31-36 (NIV)
31  To the Jews who had believed him, Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples.
32  Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”
33  They answered him, “We are Abraham’s descendants and have never been slaves of anyone. How can you say that we shall be set free?”
34  Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, everyone who sins is a slave to sin.
35  Now a slave has no permanent place in the family, but a son belongs to it for ever.
36  So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.

When you trust in Jesus Christ and His death upon the Cross, when you Repent of your sins and receive His forgiveness, when you Receive Him as LORD and SAVIOUR: then you too can be SET FREE FROM SIN.

CLARIFYING GOD’S LAW:

Now that we’ve defined sin, and that we are born in sin and are slaves to sin, we need to clarify what God’s LAW is: or The Will of God that we’ve transgressed and rebelled against when we SIN.

What is God’s Law? God’s LAW is revealed in the first five books of the Bible and summarised in the Ten Commandments: If we’ve broken just ONE of those commandments then we’ve become a sinner. We’re guilty of breaking God’s Law.

The Ten Commandments:

  1. You shall have no other gods before Me.
  2. You shall not make idols.
  3. You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain.
  4. Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy.
  5. Honour your father and your mother.
  6. You shall not murder.
  7. You shall not commit adultery.
  8. You shall not steal.
  9. You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
  10. You shall not covet.

Question: Have you ever told a lie? Just one? If you have then it only takes one lie to make you a liar (it’s the same as murder, just one murder makes you a murderer for life). God Word tells us “No liar can enter the Kingdom of Heaven”… Can you see how we need to be cleansed of sin? It contaminates our soul forever until it is washed away.

Is there anyone who hasn’t sinned? Has someone ever been born without a sin nature?

Through Adam (Adam and Eve), the inherent inclination to sin entered the human race, and human beings became sinners by nature. When Adam sinned, his inner nature was transformed by his sin of rebellion against God, bringing to him spiritual and physical death and depravity which would be passed on to all who came after him. We are sinners not because we sin; rather, we sin because we are sinners. This passed-on sinful condition is known as inherited sin. Just as we inherit physical characteristics from our parents, we inherit our sinful natures from Adam. King David lamented this condition of fallen human nature in Psalm 51:5: “Surely I was sinful at birth, sinful from the time my mother conceived me.” It’s true of all of us, we are sold into slavery to sin by Adam: We are in bondage to sin and Satan…

How can I avoid going to Hell?

Your Personal SIN: Personal sin is that which is committed every day by every human being. Because we have inherited a sin nature from Adam, we commit individual, personal sins, everything from seemingly innocent untruths and lies to hatred and murder. Those who have not placed their faith and trust in Jesus Christ must pay the penalty for these personal sins, as well as inherited sin of Adam and Eve. However, believers who’ve trusted in Jesus for Salvation from SIN, have been SET FREE from the eternal penalty of sin: which is Hell and spiritual death, but now we also have the power to resist sinning. Now we can choose whether or not to commit personal sins because we have the power to resist sin through the Holy Spirit who dwells within us, sanctifying and convicting us of our sins when we do commit them (Romans 8:9-11). Once we confess our personal sins to God and ask for His forgiveness for them, we are restored to perfect fellowship and communion with Him. “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9).

We are condemned due to inherited sin from Adam and our personal sin breaking God’s Holy Commandments and Law. The only just penalty for this sin is death (Romans 6:23), not just physical death but eternal death (Revelation 20:11-15). Thankfully, inherited sin and personal sin have been crucified on the cross of Jesus, and now by an act of faith in Jesus Christ as your Saviour “we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace” (Ephesians 1:7).

The Most Shocking News:

Is not going to be we’re now in the EU or We’re now out of the EU: But it is “You Are Headed For Hell… Unless…”

Trust in Jesus my friends and this most shocking news will never be heard for you. Your place in Heaven is secured the moment you put your fiath and trust in Jesus Christ and His death upon the Cross for your sins.

Here’s Jesus Promise Again: FREEDOM:

John 8:34-36.
34  Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, everyone who sins is a slave to sin.
35  Now a slave has no permanent place in the family, but a son belongs to it for ever.
36  So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.

“Free at last, Free at last, Thank God Almighty, I’m Free at last.”

Have an Awesome week with Jesus.

Don.

 

NOTE: God’s Convicting Charge Against Human Beings:

Isaiah 59:1-20 (NIV)
1  Surely the arm of the LORD is not too short to save, nor his ear too dull to hear.
2  But your iniquities have separated you from your God; your sins have hidden his face from you, so that he will not hear.
3  For your hands are stained with blood, your fingers with guilt. Your lips have spoken lies, and your tongue mutters wicked things.
4  No-one calls for justice; no-one pleads his case with integrity. They rely on empty arguments and speak lies; they conceive trouble and give birth to evil.
5  They hatch the eggs of vipers and spin a spider’s web. Whoever eats their eggs will die, and when one is broken, an adder is hatched.
6  Their cobwebs are useless for clothing; they cannot cover themselves with what they make. Their deeds are evil deeds, and acts of violence are in their hands.
7  Their feet rush into sin; they are swift to shed innocent blood. Their thoughts are evil thoughts; ruin and destruction mark their ways.
8  The way of peace they do not know; there is no justice in their paths. They have turned them into crooked roads; no-one who walks in them will know peace.
9  So justice is far from us, and righteousness does not reach us. We look for light, but all is darkness; for brightness, but we walk in deep shadows.
10  Like the blind we grope along the wall, feeling our way like men without eyes. At midday we stumble as if it were twilight; among the strong, we are like the dead.
11  We all growl like bears; we moan mournfully like doves. We look for justice, but find none; for deliverance, but it is far away.
12  For our offences are many in your sight, and our sins testify against us. Our offences are ever with us, and we acknowledge our iniquities:
13  rebellion and treachery against the LORD, turning our backs on our God, fomenting oppression and revolt, uttering lies our hearts have conceived.
14  So justice is driven back, and righteousness stands at a distance; truth has stumbled in the streets, honesty cannot enter.
15  Truth is nowhere to be found, and whoever shuns evil becomes a prey. The LORD looked and was displeased that there was no justice.
16  He saw that there was no-one, he was appalled that there was no-one to intervene; so his own arm worked salvation for him, and his own righteousness sustained him.
17  He put on righteousness as his breastplate, and the helmet of salvation on his head; he put on the garments of vengeance and wrapped himself in zeal as in a cloak.
18  According to what they have done, so will he repay wrath to his enemies and retribution to his foes; he will repay the islands their due.
19  From the west, men will fear the name of the LORD, and from the rising of the sun, they will revere his glory. For he will come like a pent-up flood that the breath of the LORD drives along.
20  “The Redeemer will come to Zion, to those in Jacob who repent of their sins,” declares the LORD.

My friends, the REDEEMER has come, the LORD Jesus Christ, to set you FREE from your sins today. Amen!

 

Desperate For LOVE

no God no Love, Know God, Know Love

Daily Spirit & Word: 759: Desperate For LOVE

Good morning my friends, it’s Fantastic Friday again. Some people say, “Monday to Friday is for work, but the weekends are for LOVE”. Well that’s so true, and so I’m going to give you LOVE today. This world is desperate for love, real love. So many people are living lives where love is in short supply, but they don’t have to my friends, because love is much closer than you think.

God IS Love.

1 John 4:7-21 (NIV)
7  Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God.
8  Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.
9  This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him.
10  This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.
11  Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.
12  No-one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.
13  We know that we live in him and he in us, because he has given us of his Spirit.
14  And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Saviour of the world.
15  If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in him and he in God.
16  And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him.
17  In this way, love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment, because in this world we are like him.
18  There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.
19  We love because he first loved us.
20  If anyone says, “I love God,” yet hates his brother, he is a liar. For anyone who does not love his brother, whom he has seen, cannot love God, whom he has not seen.
21  And he has given us this command: Whoever loves God must also love his brother.

God is LOVE:

Did you know that in the passage above, LOVE is mentioned 27 times, go on, go back and count it. See how many times you can count the word LOVE?

My friends, how we NEED to KNOW God’s LOVE today; because God is LOVE. I don’t know about you, but I want that LOVE. I need that LOVE.

Yesterday we heard the tragic news that Jo Cox, an young mother and wife, an devoted MP, was shot and stabbed to death, murdered in broad-daylight in a quiet town in England. That’s such a horrific thing and our hearts must go out to her children and her husband. But what about the community who knew and loved her too? Jerremy Corbyn said about her, “She was a wonderful woman who stood for many things – human rights, peace and justice, who suffered a death that was “beyond appalling”.

Jo Cox’s family, friends and this whole Country has been robbed of a wonderful, beautiful and vibrant life. Where is LOVE? Remember what she stood for; “human rights, peace and justice”… These are the very things God wants us to know today, we can only truly know them, when we know God’s love and God is LOVE. You can’t hate people if God’s LOVE is in you, all you can do is love them.

In the passage above it tells us TWICE: God is love, but then it goes on to define that love for us as well: “This IS LOVE: not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins”. 1 John 4 Verse 10.

We know that right? But do we know it?

God is LOVE, so to demonstrate how much He loves you, He sent His ONE and ONLY Son to DIE for you.

When did He do that? Whilst we were still sinners… So it’s not because we deserve it, it’s not because we are good or because of anything in us to make God do it for us, but it’s because of His LOVE.

Why did He do that? Verse 9 tells us why, “So that we might live”… Live in love, live in God, live forever, live in Heaven and not in Hell. That’s real LOVE.

There’s a reason John is telling us all about God’s LOVE:

It’s that God wants, expects and knows, that when we KNOW Him, we’re going to be so full of His love, that we’re going to want to LOVE everyone. Not just the family, the neighbours or our workmates, but EVERYONE. We’re going to LOVE: the unlovely, the ones the world doesn’t love and wants to shut away. We’re going to love the ones who are hard to love. Why and How? because when we KNOW God, He gives us His LOVE in our hearts and that love will be shown in what we do and how we act towards everyone else in this world. If we’re not loving, then we just don’t know God. If we don’t know God then we are NOT SAVED, because we are still in our sins.

God is LOVE: He loves you no matter what, even when you were still a sinner, God was loving you.

Romans 5:8 (NIV) But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

But it’s not a wishy-washy kind of love: You see God is also revealed in John’s Gospel as: Light (Holiness, Righteousness, Justice), Love and Life. (See outline of 1 John at the end).

God couldn’t just let everyone into Heaven because of His love; but Jesus death can. He is always loving, kind and gentle, but He’s also JUST and sin must be punished. What do you think should happen to; murderers, rapists, child molestors, etc? What punishment would you give the murderer of Jo Cox? We, in our human justice, believe they should be punished or made to pay in some way for their crimes, right? Well, God has promised that all SIN will one day be punished. His punishment for sin, all sin, is DEATH. Every liar, thief, adulterer, murderer and rapist will be cast into the lake of fire.

There’s a judgement to Come:

Revelation 20:11-15 (NIV)
11  Then I saw a great white throne and him who was seated on it. Earth and sky fled from his presence, and there was no place for them.
12  And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Another book was opened, which is the book of life. The dead were judged according to what they had done as recorded in the books.
13  The sea gave up the dead that were in it, and death and Hades gave up the dead that were in them, and each person was judged according to what he had done.
14  Then death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. The lake of fire is the second death.
15  If anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.

 Why? Because sin is going against God. God is fair, just and right to punish sin, because when we sin on purpose we’re saying to God, “I’m not going to live the way you want me to.” It’s like shutting the door on your best friend and slamming it in his face. Or it’s like having a feast and not inviting your loving granny to be a part of it, eating your treats in front of her. That’s cruel right? Nobody would ever do that to their loving granny would they? Well, when we live our life as if God doesn’t exist, that’s what we’re doing to Him, we’re slamming the door in God’s face. Well then my friends, when we shut the door on God’s face then we’re going to live for eternity without Him. Sin brings DEATH of our relationship with God and it’s ETERNAL. There is a price to be paid for sin, it’s going to cost us dearly, unless….. unless your name is found in the Lamb’s Book of Life.

However, in His LOVE, whilst we were still sinning like that, God sent His Son to DIE for us.

To benefit from God’s love and His sacrifice, we simply TRUST in Jesus. Turn in repentance and put our faith and trust in His Son.

When you receive Jesus as your LORD and SAVIOUR; you pass from death to life. God will forgive you and wipe away all your sins.

SIMPLE SALVATION: Know God, Know Life and Love.

When you:

  • Believe in Jesus Death for your sins, (Put your faith and trust in Him alone for your Salvation from Sin).
  • Repent of your sins (turn away from them and turn towards God for forgiveness),
  • Confess your sins to Him,
  • Receive Jesus as LORD: He will not force his way in to your life, you must receive Him by faith.
  • Be born of the Spirit, Be filled with Holy Spirit,
  • Be Baptized:
  • Live the Christian life in the power of the Spirit who will guide you to be obedient to all the commands of Jesus in the Bible. 
  • Join in fellowship with Brothers and Sisters in Christ. Worshiping the LORD!
  • Your NAME will be written in the Lamb’s Book of LIFE.

We’ll probably never know what drove that man to commit such a terrible act, it is pure EVIL. However, we can KNOW what real love is like, it’s the complete opposite: It’s a life given so that others might live. Jesus died so that we can live, but not just live a life knowing that He loves us so much, but so that we can also live a life of LOVE as well. If we know God, then we’re going to be LOVING towards everyone.

Love is not a feeling, it’s an act of the will.

Love is not a state of being, but it is a wonderful state to be in.

If you want to know if you love someone or if they love you; then … Get closer to God, because God is LOVE.

The Bible tells us God is love: So to know God is to know love.

YBH: “Yes But How?” “How can I love people more?”

So many people we’re told these days are DESPERATE for love. Thankfully God has provided the KEY to loving people, first get God’s love in your heart by trusting in Jesus, then follow the prompts of the Holy Spirit to become more like Jesus; then you will be doing the following:

1 Corinthians 13:1-13 (NKJV)
1  Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I have become sounding brass or a clanging cymbal.
2  And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.
3  And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, but have not love, it profits me nothing.
4  Love suffers long (is patient) and is kind; love does not envy (get jealous); love does not parade itself, is not puffed up;
5  does not behave rudely, does not seek its own (not selfish), is not provoked (easily angered), thinks no evil;
6  does not rejoice in iniquity (doesn’t delight in evil), but rejoices in the truth;
7  bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
8  Love never fails. But whether there are prophecies, they will fail; whether there are tongues, they will cease; whether there is knowledge, it will vanish away.
9  For we know in part and we prophesy in part.
10  But when that which is perfect has come, then that which is in part will be done away.
11  When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things.
12  For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I also am known.
13  And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.

To be honest, we’re all desperate for that kind of love, the problem is we human beings perceive LOVE differently. We tend to think real love is something we need to get from someone else, but the truth is LOVE is something we get into when we’re aware that we ARE loved, and when we’re in LOVE (in God) we’re going to be so full of love, we’ll love EVERYONE. You know something my friends, when we’re loving like Jesus, then the whole world is ripe to receive that love too. Give it away; freely you have received, freely give.

May you experience REAL LOVE this weekend my friends, let’s continue to pray for the family, friends and folks who knew and loved Jo Cox, MP. Amen!

Don.

NOTE: Here’s An Outline of 1 John.

It’s amazing when some people think they can know God without ever reading the Bible, but apart from the person of Jesus Christ, there is no other way to really KNOW what God is like. John reveals three awesome things about God in His letter. God is; light, love and life. Read it, know God, know LOVE and have life.

I. God Is Light ( 1 John 1:5 ), 1 John 1:1 through 1John 2:2

A. Prologue, 1 John 1:1-2

B. How the Little Children May Have Fellowship with God, 1 John 1:3 through 1 John 2:2

1 . By Walking in Light, 1 John 1:3-7
2. By Confessing Sin, 1 John 1:8-10
3. By the Advocacy of Christ, 1 John 2:1-2

II. God Is Love ( 1 John 4:8 ), 1 John 2:3 through 1 John 4:21

A. How the Dear Children May Have Fellowship with Each Other, 1 John 2:3-14
(By Walking in Love)
B. The Dear Children Must Not Love the World, 1 John 2:15-28
C. How the Dear Children May Know Each Other and Live Together, 1 John 2:29
through 1 John 4:21
1. The Father’s Love for His Children, 1 John 2:29 through 1 John 3:3
2. The Two Natures of the Believer in Action, 1 John 3:4-24
3. Warning Against False Teachers, 1 John 4:1-6
4. God Is Love: Little Children Will Love Each Other, 1 John 4:7-21

III. God Is Life ( 1 John 5:12 ), 1 John 5

A. Victory Over the World, 1 John 5:1-5
B. Assurance of Salvation, 1 John 5:6-21

 

When the LIGHT within is DARKNESS

Lust, Pornography, Sexual Sin, Freedom in Christ,

Daily Spirit & Word: 758: The Eye is the Lamp of the Body.

But what happens when the LIGHT within is DARKNESS?

Jesus said, “The eye is the lamp of the body”

i.e. what we look at will bring it’s light into our souls. It’s either dark-light (darkness) or goodness (Light).

Good morning my friends, for the last couple of weeks the LORD has placed those words on my heart, I’ve been reading His WORD and praying about what I should share. It may be that now is the time to share it.

LUST OF THE EYES.

One of the greatest chapters in the Bible to deal with LUST of the EYES is Job 31…

Job 31:1-12 (NIV)
1  “I made a covenant with my eyes not to look lustfully at a girl.
2  For what is man’s lot from God above, his heritage from the Almighty on high?
3  Is it not ruin for the wicked, disaster for those who do wrong?
4  Does he not see my ways and count my every step?
5  “If I have walked in falsehood or my foot has hurried after deceit—
6  let God weigh me in honest scales and he will know that I am blameless—
7  if my steps have turned from the path, if my heart has been led by my eyes, or if my hands have been defiled,
8  then may others eat what I have sown, and may my crops be uprooted.
9  “If my heart has been enticed by a woman, or if I have lurked at my neighbour’s door,
10  then may my wife grind another man’s grain, and may other men sleep with her.
11  For that would have been shameful, a sin to be judged.
12  It is a fire that burns to Destruction; it would have uprooted my harvest.
Whatever harvest you’ve been working for in your life will be BURNED TO DESTRUCTION if you allow your eyes to contaminate your soul with darkness.

The EYE is the LAMP: It can either allow in darkness or light.

Matthew 6:22-23 (NIV)
22  “The eye is the lamp of the body. If your eyes are good, your whole body will be full of light.
23  But if your eyes are bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light within you is darkness, how great is that darkness!

Question: What have you been allowing your eyes to dwell upon?

Darkness or Light?

Confession Time: Newspaper Shop: W. H. Smiths. For a long time I had been witnessing to my friends whilst serving in the Royal Navy on Submarines. I had shared the Gospel with them. One day whilst in a Newspaper shop in the 1980s, I was standing in front of the row of Magazines. It was a large Newspaper shop with lots of customers. On the TOP SHELF in those days you’d have Pornographic Magazines with everything on display (I’ll not go into too much detail). In the Navy, officially pornography was banned, but unofficially, everybody used to have some PORN. We’d see it on a daily basis; on watch, off watch, on duty and off duty. In the mess they’d have pornographic videos playing, before videos came along it was reel-to-reel films. After becoming a Christian, nobody told me, but I knew in my heart I should no-longer indulge in pornographic material. Back to the Newspaper shop: I was standing there looking for a computer magazine, but my eyes drifted upward, until they were glued on the pornographic scene, hundreds of them, all lined up on the Top Shelf for me to enjoy. Just then a man walked in and stood beside me, he was looking upwards as well, he said, “And you a good Christian too”… I turned and it was one of the men I’d been witnessing to for ages. I’d been praying that he would come to know Jesus and here was I, looking at pornography. Immediately my face turned beetroot red, I stammered an excuse, denied it initially, but I’d been caught out big-time. My witness was ruined. At the moment I wanted the ground to swallow me whole.

Consumed with guilt and shame, as soon as I could I got home and fell to my knees in prayer, asking the LORD to forgive me. Why? Because I’d done the opposite of what Job had done, I hadn’t followed God’s Word or God’s Spirit and I’d ignored my own God given Conscience: I’ll never forget it, deliberately ignoring it. You know when smoke alarms get so annoying you take out the battery, from that moment on the smoke-alarm is useless. When we ignore our conscience or go against it, then it’s as if we’ve taken out the battery to silence the alarm.

When we allow our eyes to be tempted, to dwell upon things the Lord, the Holy Spirit and our Conscience are telling us we shouldn’t, then we are inviting the darkness into our lives. We are igniting a fire that cannot be quenched “It is a fire that burns to Destruction; it would have uprooted my harvest.” I don’t know if that man I’d been witnessing to about Jesus ever became a follower of Jesus, but perhaps my hypocrisy, my weakness and my sin kept him from seeing the light of the Lord. I can’t tell you how much I regretted that day, it even makes me feel ashamed right now. It took such a long time for me to feel NEW again, to feel close to Jesus, to feel the warmth and love and light of the Holy Spirit in my heart again. Praise the LORD I was not exposed at that time to public shame. There were no newspapers with the caption “Royal Navy Christian Gazes Upon Porn”…. However, now that I’ve been SET FREE from shame and guilt, I can share with you my experience of deliberately allowing my eyes to dwell upon an unclean thing, and the consequent shame, guilt and horror that it brought into my life.

Matthew 6:22-23 (NIV)
22  “The eye is the lamp of the body. If your eyes are good, your whole body will be full of light.
23  But if your eyes are bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light within you is darkness, how great is that darkness!

It was a dark time for me, oh my friends, be very careful what you allow your eyes to feast upon. I encourage you to be like Job (make a Covenant with your eyes) and like Joseph who declared when he was tempted by Potiphar’s wife to commit adultery, this is how he reasoned in his heart;

Genesis 39:9 (NIV) “No-one is greater in this house than I am. My master has withheld nothing from me except you, because you are his wife. How then could I do such a wicked thing and sin against God?”

Every SIN we commit is against God: Yes, even when we think lustful thoughts, we’re guilty, as Jesus said, of adultery, it’s against our spouse or partner, but if we’re not married is it wrong to lust? Yes it is my friends, it’s a SIN against God, because we’re being unfaithful to HIM. But what if you are married or committed to someone? Imagine how they’d feel if they knew you’d been unfaithful in your thoughts? It would crush their spirits and tear-trust to shreds.

God has given us, followers of Jesus Christ, the whole world to richly enjoy. He’s not a spoil-sport, that’s why His Creation is so beautiful, but when we allow dark-light into our souls, when the light becomes darkness within, then we’re in danger my friends, “HOW GREAT IS THAT DARKNESS”…

I can tell you this, because I’ve been in the darkness or the darkness has been in me, even after following Jesus, it’s a terrible darkness to be sure. It brings with it FEAR, DREAD, (Dread is a fearful expectation or anticipation that something terrible is about to happen)… It brings GUILT… However, when we’re walking with the LORD Jesus, being guided by His Holy Spirit and listening to our God given conscience then know this my friends, “There is NO CONDEMNATION for those who are in Christ Jesus”… We’ll experience FREEDOM not to look with lust. We’ll have POWER to walk in the LIGHT and stay in the LIGHT… How does that happen? If we see a lovely figure, that before we were tempted by, we’ll be able to thank God for the beauty and not begin to think lustful thoughts. HOW? Because the Holy Spirit gives us His power and freedom and self-control. It’s a fruit and gift of the indwelling Holy Spirit, but we’ve got a choice to make every day and moment by moment throughout the day. Temptation will never go away, but how we deal with those temptations, that’s what will preserve our hearts and enable us to be full of light, full of goodness.

The Day That FREEDOM Comes:

As many of you know, I used to live in Plymouth, on the way back from a tour on my Submarine, I was driving into Plymouth and noticed this sign on the A38 just outside the City. It had a picture of a Tower with the words in Latin. “Turris Fortissima Est Nomen Jehova”, “The name of the Lord is a strong tower” It wasn’t long afterwards that I regained my freedom in Christ. Through tears of joy and peace, I was back with my Lord Jesus. Oh my friends, I can testify “How GREAT is that DARKNESS” but what’s even more blessed “HOW WONDERFUL IS THE LIGHT”…

Proverbs 18:10 (NIV) “The name of the LORD is a strong tower; the righteous run to it and are safe.”

Jesus Christ will keep you safe from temptation, He’s like a strong tower, a fortress that cannot be broken into, but we need to run to Him. We need to flee temptation and run to Jesus in prayer at that moment. We’ll be SAFE as long as we run to the Saviour.

NO TEMPTATION HAS CAUGHT YOU.

1 Corinthians 10:13 (NIV) “No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it.”

“Common to man”, means we’re ALL TEMPTED, but how we deal with it, that’s the answer… Run to Jesus, the Strong Fortress that cannot be conquered.

Where your treasure is, there you heart will be also. What are you treasuring in your heart today?

“No one can serve two masters”. If you are trying to serve Jesus and also serving your lusts, then you are only fooling yourself. The Darkness within is GREAT. Walk in the Light.

Amen!

That’s how we can know we need the LORD Jesus every single day.

There will never be a time when you don’t need Jesus.

Stay close to Jesus this week my friends.

If you are tempted or if you’ve allowed the DARKNESS to reign in your heart too long, you may need prayers of deliverance. Go to a trusted brother or sister who’s walking closely with Lord Jesus and get them to pray with you. Confess your sins to one another… Be set free today by the Lord Jesus Christ. Amen!

PRAYER: Oh Lord Jesus Christ, help me to love you today, more than I love this world or the beautiful things in this world. There’s so much You’ve given me to be thankful for, please keep my heart close to Your Heart Lord. Let me appreciate and love the things that You love. Let me walk in the Light as You are in the Light. Let me live in Freedom. Give me self-control, the fruit and gift of the Holy Spirit. Fill me with your Spirit right now Jesus, I need you LORD…Amen!

Be blessed and stay close to Jesus today. Amen!

Don.

 

The LAW and The Promises of God.

Christians are set free from sin and the law through faith in Jesus.

Daily Spirit & Word: 756: The Law and The Promise.

The Law was our overseer, instructor and tutor, until FAITH came through Jesus Christ.

FREEDOM IN CHRIST JESUS.

Good morning my friends, today I’ve been reading in the Bible about an Tutor / Instructor / Schoolmaster, a person who’s been “put in charge” of children. Imagine being held captive by a stern guardian. Like being locked up in a School with a Schoolmaster: Telling you to do stuff that’s beyond your ability to do. For most people that would be hell. I’d hate being told to do something, and being shouted at, because I can’t do it. That’s what the LAW of God is like: A stern schoolmaster, shouting out Ten Commandments, that we just can’t keep, because we’re SLAVES to sin. Well, there’s good news. No, I’ll go even further, GREAT NEWS. There’s great news because we can be set free to live according to God’s Holy Standards through FAITH in Christ Jesus. HOW?

But, as we’ll see HOW today, The Schoolmaster the Bible is talking about is God’s LAW (Summarised in the Ten Commandments). The function / purpose of God’s Law was to look after us and show us God’s standard until Christ should come and give us something better to oversee us: Faith in Jesus opens us up to a much better guide than the written law; the indwelling Holy Spirit, who reveals God’s way, through our Conscience. Awesome!

Romans 3:19-20 (NIV)
19 Now we know that whatever the law says, it says to those who are under the law, so that every mouth may be silenced and the whole world held accountable to God. 20 Therefore no-one will be declared righteous in his sight by observing the law; rather, through the law we become conscious of sin.

Galatians 3:19-25 (NIV)
19 What, then, was the purpose of the law? It was added because of transgressions until the Seed (Jesus Christ) to whom the promise referred had come. The law was put into effect through angels by a mediator (Moses). 20 A mediator, however, does not represent just one party; but God is one. 21 Is the law, therefore, opposed to the promises of God? Absolutely not! For if a law had been given that could impart life, then righteousness would certainly have come by the law. 22 But the Scripture declares that the whole world is a prisoner of sin, so that what was promised, being given through faith in Jesus Christ, might be given to those who believe. 23 Before this faith came, we were held prisoners by the law, locked up until faith should be revealed. 24 So the law was put in charge (Paidagogos: Tutor, Instructor, Schoolmaster) to lead us to Christ that we might be justified by faith. 25 Now that faith has come, we are no longer under the supervision of the law.

Once we get FAITH: To believe and put our trust in Jesus for our Salvation, we are SET FREE from the PRISON of the LAW: from the instruction / oversight of the Law of God. We are under a NEW Tutor: The Holy Spirit. He will guide us and show us God’s ways. He’ll never contradict God’s Law, but will impart the power to live according to it in FREEDOM.

 

Live in the Spirit.

What is the purpose of the Law?

Galatians 3:19-25 (NIV)
19  What, then, was the purpose of the law? It was added because of transgressions until the Seed (Jesus Christ) to whom the promise referred had come. The law was put into effect through angels by a mediator.
20  A mediator, however, does not represent just one party; but God is one.
21  Is the law, therefore, opposed to the promises of God? Absolutely not! For if a law had been given that could impart life, then righteousness would certainly have come by the law. (But it couldn’t impart life, nor did it have any power to make us righteous, it was only added because of transgressions / sin).
22  But the Scripture declares that the whole world is a prisoner of sin, so that what was promised, being given through faith in Jesus Christ, might be given to those who believe.
23  Before this faith came, we were held prisoners by the law, locked up until faith should be revealed.
24  So the law was put in charge (paidagogos: tutor / schoolmaster /instructor) to lead us to Christ that we might be justified by faith.
25  Now that faith has come, we are no longer under the supervision of the law.

The Key Verse: Galatians 3:22 “But the Scripture declares that the whole world is a prisoner of sin…”

What an amazing statement in the Bible: The WHOLE WORLD (Every single soul) is a PRISONER OF SIN, until they are SET FREE by faith in Jesus Christ.

So the reason God has given us the Law (10 Commandments) is so that we can KNOW (Be instructed by the Schoolmaster: the Law) and how we can be SET FREE through FAITH in Jesus Christ.

In Verse 24 “So the law was put in charge to lead us to Christ that we might be justified by faith.”

(We don’t have an equivalent English word for the term translated here, “Put in Charge”. The Greek word is “paidagogos” The KJV translates it as “Schoolmaster”, but the Greek word is referring to a Servant in a rich household who looked after and educated a child until the child was educated enough to go onto further education away from home at a school: Rather than “Put in Charge” NIV, I think “Schoolmaster” is a more accurate translation. In recent history in the UK the very rich had household Schoolmasters / Tutors who’d educate young children until they could attend school). So the LAW was only put in charge of us, until faith came along, that faith is in Christ Jesus, and once we’ve got that faith, we are no longer under the care, supervision and instruction of the Law.

Interestingly we have English words that a so similar to this Greek word:  paidagogos: Paediatrician, Paediatric: The care and treatment by a Specialist “Called a Paediatrician” for infants and children.

WOWzer! The LAW (Summarised in the Ten Commandments) was give because of Sin and Transgression.

Does the Bible tell us that in another place? It’s good to see if this teaching is consistent with the rest of Scripture.

Romans 3:19-20 (NIV)
19  Now we know that whatever the law says, it says to those who are under the law, so that every mouth may be silenced and the whole world held accountable to God. 20  Therefore no-one will be declared righteous in his sight by observing the law; rather, through the law we become conscious of sin.

WOW: It does. In Romans 3:19 we see it again, “it says to those who are ‘under’ the law” (Under: Under the Paidagogos (care and supervision) of the Law).

  • We are under the law: Held prisoner by the law: Until FAITH comes to our hearts to set us free.
  • We cannot be SAVED by trying our best.
  • We cannot be SAVED by trying to live according to the Law or the Ten Commandments.
  • All that effort will show us is that we cannot be good enough for God. We can’t stop SINNING until we’re set FREE from the Slavery to sin. Sin is our master until we’re set free by Jesus Christ, through Faith in Jesus Christ.

A MIRROR: When you get up in the morning, you look at your face in the mirror, sometimes to remove any dirt or smears. Make sure you wash the toothpaste off 🙂 The Bible like the Mirror: We look into the Commandments of God and we see that we are dirty sinners, we’ve all broken God’s Holy Standard. However, the mirror can’t clean your face, it only shows you the dirt. The LAW cannot clean away your sins, it only shows you the condition of your heart. The Sin Within. Nothing you can do can remove those stains of sin. No amount of effort will wash your soul clean from sin. No amount of sorrow for sin (we should be sorry), but sorrow itself cannot remove sin. Some people say to me “I say sorry to God for my sin”. That’s good, you should be sorry, but being sorry will not remove your sin. Only DEATH will remove your sin. Jesus died so that you don’t have to.

1 Peter 3:18 (NIV) “For Christ died for sins once for all, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God. He was put to death in the body but made alive by the Spirit,” i.e. the righteous Jesus died for the unrighteous me / you. We were sinners and Jesus died in our place upon the Cross.

The LAW was given so that we could see our need for Jesus.

Will you put your faith and trust in Jesus Christ today? Stop trying to be good enough in your own strength and trust in the goodness / righteousness of Jesus Christ. Once you believe the Gospel, the Good News, you will be SAVED. Put your faith and trust in Jesus alone for your own Salvation from Sin. Nothing else will ever remove the stain of sin, revealed by the Ten Commandments and your guilty conscience can be set free by Jesus. Awesome.

Repent and Believe the Good News.

The PROMISE: The promises of God are better than the Law of God: We are able to be righteous through faith in Jesus Christ, a righteousness that couldn’t ever be possible by trying to keep God’s law. Thank the LORD for His awesome promises. Thank the LORD for Jesus Christ who has set us FREE. Amen.

My friends, have you been set FREE?

Don.

#FantasticFriday #GoodNews #GreatNews #BreakingNews #Faith #Jesus #Christian #Teaching #Law #Commandments #Promise #LawandPromise

 

Winning The Hard Hearts

winning the hard-hearted to Jesus Christ

Daily Spirit & Word: 755: Winning The Hard Hearts.

What Does it Take to Awaken The Desire For God?

Almost Persuaded:

Acts 26:24-29 (NIV) Paul’s Testimony Before King Agripa and Festus. 
24  At this point Festus interrupted Paul’s defence. “You are out of your mind, Paul!” he shouted. “Your great learning is driving you insane.”
25  “I am not insane, most excellent Festus,” Paul replied. “What I am saying is true and reasonable.
26  The king is familiar with these things, and I can speak freely to him. I am convinced that none of this has escaped his notice, because it was not done in a corner.
27  King Agrippa, do you believe the prophets? I know you do.”
28  Then Agrippa said to Paul, “Do you think that in such a short time you can persuade me to be a Christian?”
29  Paul replied, “Short time or long—I pray God that not only you but all who are listening to me today may become what I am, except for these chains.”

Good morning my friends, I’ve been reflecting upon our outreach over the last few weeks. A couple of weeks ago we took some American girls out with us to share the Good News of Jesus and Jackie, who was with me, was so struck by the Apathy and Cynicism she encountered from the people of London. She found it really hard and felt their pain. She said, “They need a breakthrough, they need to know there is a God”… She was particularly struck by one man’s response, “If there is a God, then I don’t care”… It was a bit like what King Agrippa said to Paul, “Do you think that in such a short time you can persuade me to be a Christian?”

What is it that makes a soul so hard to reach?

We’re often perplexed as Jackie was, we wonder what makes people so hard to reach for Jesus.

The Bible has lots of answers to that question, “Sin, hard-heartedness, rebellion, Satan, doubt, spiritual blindness, spiritual deafness, fear, love of the world, lack of faith,” However, the Bible also makes it clear that it’s the LORD who draws people to Himself and He does so through His Church. Not the church buildings but the church people, you and me. He’s told us clearly what will awaken a sin soaked and hard hearted soul from their slumber; it’s the Gospel the Good News itself that will produce the much needed faith to believe in God, to believe in Jesus and to believe that this life is not all there is.

But before we can preach the Good News to anyone, we’ve got to plough-up the rough ground of their heart to get them ready for the good seed of the Gospel, we can do that with something sharp and hard to break open that hard-heart soil. Thankfully God has also provided a way for us to do that too: through the right use His law. It’s the LAW of God, the Ten Commandments that will reveal to a person their NEED of Jesus. Remember though, we can’t be SAVED by the law, it just makes us aware of God’s High Heavenly Standard and how far we’ve all fallen short of it.

Romans 3:20 (NIV)  “Therefore no-one will be declared righteous in his sight by observing the law; rather, through the law we become conscious of sin.” (The Law Awakens The Conscience).

Galatians 3:24-26 (KJV)  Schoolmaster Teaches:
24  Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith.
25  But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster.
26  For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus.  

There’s another function of God’s Law; It also awakens the sin-seared conscience, because repeated sin tends to deaden the conscience and God gives people over to whatever their heart’s desire. If you want to sin, then God will let you, but you’ll pay the consequences afterwards.

Once we’ve prepared the heart, just as Jesus did, then a person will be ready to hear the Good News.

Not always immediate though, as we’ve seen with King Agrippa, “Do you think that in such a short time you can persuade me to become a Christian?” Sometimes it takes repeated exposure to the high standards of God’s moral code, before a person realises “it’s impossible to be good enough in my own strength to get to Heaven.” The Law of God, the Ten Commandments bring a knowledge of sin and awaken our conscience once again.

But eventually, and hopefully, the heart will be prepared for the sowing of the good seed of God’s Word into the softened ground of their hearts. Faith comes by hearing and understanding the Good News. It’s not just preaching it, but helping someone understand the good news.

The POWER to SAVE: Comes through PRAYER.

We can do all of that good work for the Lord though and still lack the power to save, because one key ingredient the Lord has provided is lacking; PRAYER… We must be praying for those we want to bring to Jesus. We know that it’s by His Spirit that He’ll lead men to Christ, He does this through the proclamation of the Gospel, that is how they’ll get faith, but the power comes when we first connect with the Saviour ourselves for those we want to introduce Him. Without prayer, without fellowship with Jesus, we’re going to remain powerless to win a single convert to Him. Didn’t Jesus say, “Apart from Me you can do nothing”.  Jesus longs for you to spend quality time with Himself. He often went off to lonely places just to be with the Father. It would have been so easy for Jesus to make excuses, “I’m too tired”, “I’ve been healing all day and I’m exhausted”, but look through the Gospels and you’ll notice that when Jesus went to pray, something amazing always happened the very next day or even immediately.

We can reason it out my friends, if Jesus needed to pray and seek the Father’s will and spend time with His Father in Heaven, then so do we. I’m just so thankful that Jesus chose ordinary folks to be His closest Disciples, because when they saw Jesus praying and what happened as a result, they asked Him, “Lord, teach us to pray”… They knew, when Jesus went off to pray, something awesome is about to happen soon and they wanted it too. Jesus Followers eventually got it my friends, look through Acts and you’ll notice something AWESOME: Whenever the Believers, followers of Jesus prayed, something fantastic happened: Prison doors flew open, Angels appeared, earthquakes, shaking ground, freedom, power, people coming to faith, etc etc… It’s PRAYER and connecting with Jesus, that’s the KEY to unlocking Heaven’s Power on Earth.

Have you got someone you know who needs Jesus? Do they seem closed to the Gospel? Well, when was the last time you spent an hour or two with Jesus just for them? Bringing their whole life to Jesus in prayer; their thoughts, feelings, hurts, anger, hatred, hard-heartedness, stubborn refusal to believe, rebellion against God, indifference, cynicism, fears, failings, arguments, etc, etc, bring it all to Jesus in prayer.  When you do, you will come to understand that Jesus loves them even more than you do. You’ll see that Father God’s heart is that they come to repentance and faith in His Son Jesus. God wants to SAVE your friends, but He wants you to want that just as much as He does. We will only get the Father’s Heart when we spend time with Him in prayer. So I’ve come to see that it’s not just knowing the Father’s Heart, but also getting his heart’s desire for ourselves.

You’ve heard the saying, “Bad company corrupts good character” well the opposite is just as true; “Good company changes bad character”. When we’re with the LORD regularly, He’s GOOD, then our own character will become even more like His.

After Spending Time Praying: Then it’s TIME FOR AWESOME 🙂 You’re going to see Him doing awesome, amazing and exciting things in the lives of those you’ve brought to Jesus in prayer.

Keep praying, don’t stop, don’t give up just because you don’t get immediate results. Be persistent. Sometimes when we’re about to get a breakthrough, we’ve give up. When God’s about to move in power, we’ve moved on. Oh My friends, don’t give up on your friends, because God didn’t give up on you. Remember again how stubborn you were before you finally accepted Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour. Extend the same grace to your loved one and those you are trying to win to Jesus.

Keep praying, Keep sharing, Keep going for Jesus.

So here’s how to break open the hard-hearted, sin-soaked souls for Jesus.

  1.  Prayer, bring them to Jesus first in prayer. 2 Cor 10:3-5 Get equipped yourself by Jesus and the power of the Holy Spirit. John 15, Ephesians 6:10-20.
  2.  Preparation of their Hearts: Law to the proud (get their hearts ready for the Gospel).
  3.  Gospel: Grace to the Humble / Humbled. Once a person is ready for the Good News of Jesus, they’ll gladly hear the answer to their dilemma.

Once a hard-heart has been softened by the spade-work of the law, and they’ve stopped trying to justify themselves, then they are ready for the Good News, so give them the Good News of Jesus.

This is the Way of the Master: The LORD Jesus Christ. That’s what you’ll see Jesus doing in the Gospels time and time again. Jesus was showing / instructing and preparing His Disciples how to win people to God. He set a good example and then commanded them to do it, being obedient to ALL that He had taught them.

THE NEED FOR GOD AWAKENED.

There is the sense of need in every heart, but most often people are meeting their needs in worldly ways. They long for something, and think the answer lies in what this world has to offer. That deep hunger and longing has been placed in their hearts by God. “Deep calls to Deep”…

For a long time a man may live the routine of life half asleep; then all of a sudden there comes some completely insolvable problem, some quite unanswerable question, some overpowering temptation, some struggling in an effort to be good, which he feels is beyond his strength or capacity to achieve. In that day there is nothing left to do but to cry out, “Heaven SAVE me”, “There must be more to life than this”… And that sense of unmet, ungratified, unsatisfied need awakens the soul to it’s deepest need, the need for God.

Our friends, neighbours and family members in this world are desperately hungry spiritually. They might not articulate it, but we can observe their hunger when we watch what the spend their precious time, money and efforts trying to get.  We know the things of this world bring soul satisfaction for a short time, but because it doesn’t last, and the hunger doesn’t go away, they keep looking and trying to fill and satisfy it with the wrong things, the things of this world. My friends, we’ve got what they desperately need, so we need many more of God’s people to get a desire to share what we have with them.

We can’t do it in our own strength, we cannot awaken or persuade any soul, only the HOLY SPIRIT can do that my friends. So pray, prepare the heart, preach the Gospel and pray again. Then stand back and watch the LORD do His awesome work of bringing precious souls to Himself. Amen.

It might be a trickle at first, but then the flood of awakening will come. I believe that many thousands will come to see their need of Jesus.

We’re going out again tonight to share the Good News of Jesus on the streets with some of those hungry people, we’re meeting this morning to pray and spend time with Jesus for them. Amen!

8.00am Prayer Gathering.

5.00pm Gathering to go out and share the Good News.

You can do it to: Pray, Prepare, Share and Lead them to Jesus. That’s a little like a P,P,S 🙂

Don.

 

How to LIVE in Kingdom Power

recognising our Spiritual Poverty is Key to the Kingdom of Heaven.

Daily Spirit & Word: 754: How To LIVE in Kingdom Power.

“Blessed Are The Poor In Spirit, For Theirs IS the Kingdom of Heaven”.

Recognising our ‘spiritual’ poverty is Key to unlocking the Kingdom of Heaven.

Good morning my friends, I can honestly say, “Yesterday was AWESOME”. It really was, because we had an amazing time of worship, followed by the Community Feast and time at the British Home. God’s power and presence were evident, but this morning the LORD has taken me back, back to KNOWING that without Him I can’t do anything of value for the Kingdom of Heaven. I can’t even walk an inch without the Spirit of God and feel it’s of any value.

Matthew 5:3 (NIV)  “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”

This verse has been wrongly interpreted to mean those who are POOR: i.e. the poor people in this world. That is not what this verse is talking about, it’s all about Spiritual Poverty.

That “Blessed are” is not something that might be, it’s not something that could be, that blessedness is something which every truly born again Believer and follower of Jesus has… YOURS IS THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN. i.e. You are BLESSED when you recognise your Spiritual POVERTY without Christ or the Holy Spirit’s indwelling.

We cannot be “Blessed are the poor in Spirit” unless we can see that without Holy Spirit we are really poor.

Picture the poor beggars hands, holding palms upwards towards Heaven: That’s how we need to be in our hearts with God, desiring the fullness of Holy Spirit. However, He’s longing to give us what we need.

Why Do We NEED Holy SPIRIT?

Because to become “Blessed are the poor in Spirit”, we must first recognise our POVERTY without the Spirit of God. Also we must come to realise that we NEED the Holy Spirit all the time or we will be weak, without guidance, powerless to do anything of value in the Kingdom and foolish.

  • We are POOR naturally: The man without the Spirit cannot see OR accept the things of God.
  • We are POOR in our natural state as a human being: Because without the SPIRIT we can’t understand the things of God.

1 Corinthians 2:14 (NIV) “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.”

We really do have a choice as Disciples of Jesus Christ; we can walk in the Spirit or we can walk in the Flesh.

However, when we choose to walk in the flesh, there are dire consequences; DEATH. It’s an experience as though we are dead to the Spiritual realm.

I like what William Barclay said about this verse;

So in verse 14 Paul speaks of the man who is psuchikos. He is the man who lives as if there was nothing beyond physical life and there were no needs other than material needs, whose values are all physical and material. A man like that cannot understand spiritual things. A man who thinks that nothing is more important than the satisfaction of the sex urge cannot understand the meaning of chastity; a man who ranks the amassing of material things as the supreme end of life cannot understand generosity; and a man who has never a thought beyond this world cannot understand the things of God. To him they look mere foolishness (Barclay, Letters to Corinthians, 1975, 28).

We must remember that Paul’s letter is written to Believers, Christians and Followers of Jesus Christ; they had already been ‘born of the Spirit’, but they were living like people who didn’t. They were walking in the power of the Flesh rather than the power of the Spirit and for me the warning comes home, “Donald, you can do that too”… At any moment in time, a true follower of Jesus can walk either in the flesh (human reasoning, desires, feelings, fears, thoughts and imaginations) or we can walk in the power and presence of the Holy Spirit.

  • Let’s look at what a walk in the flesh feels like: Romans 7. Condemned (Feeling Condemned / Death).
  • Let’s look at what a walk inthe Spirit feels like: Romans 8. No Condemnation (Feeling Alive / Life).

Which WALK will you choose today?

Almost as soon as we begin walking in the flesh the things of God become foolishness all over again. We won’t want; fellowship, Bible study, prayer, evangelism, teaching of the Apostles (Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, Acts or Romans) or serving Jesus. When we walk in the flesh we will be fleshly.

So my friends, can you see why Jesus, as part of His repeated and often told teachings, which are summarised for us in the Sermon on the Mount, would emphasise this in His major teaching that we call; “The Sermon on the Mount”? For without the Holy Spirit nobody can; know, understand, experience, feel, yield, surrender or love God… Our “Blessedness” comes from the fact that we’ve been drawn to faith and trust in Jesus by the Holy Spirit. It comes from that fact that once we begin to come to Him, we realise that we NEED His forgiveness, we understand that without Him (Holy Spirit) we are just like everyone else in this world.

So we truly are blessed when we recognise our need of God and our POVERTY of Spirit.

Matthew 5:3 (NIV)  “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”

Why? Because when we KNOW how poor in Spirit we are without God the Holy Spirit’s indwelling, then we will have entered The Kingdom of Heaven.

This promise of the Kingdom of Heaven:

Is not something that happens when we die, it’s our PRESENT CONDITION once we’ve realised our NEED of Holy Spirit.

Matthew 5:3 (NIV)  “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”

I hope you can see this, for this teaching in KEY to walking with Jesus, without the Holy Spirit, we’re just walking or trying to live the Christian life in the power of our flesh or human strength and capacity. With the Holy Spirit we very soon realise that we just can’t do it, we are powerless to do anything.

Jesus didn’t just say this once or in one way: It’s the ESSENCE of all of Jesus teaching to His Disciples.

When Jesus was tempted in the wilderness in Luke’s Gospel we read, “He was led by the Spirit into the wilderness” after the temptation of Jesus, “He came out of the wilderness ‘full of the Holy Spirit’… Jesus was showing that to even win just one battle every follower needs to be FULL OF THE HOLY SPIRIT.

To show us how much we need HOLY SPIRIT, before He departed John gives us a few chapters fully explaining HOW the Holy Spirit will EMPOWER everyone who comes to the point of receiving Jesus as Lord. From John 14 to the end of 17… Read and re-read those chapters my friends, you’ll soon discover what Matthew and the Holy Spirit are saying to you today. Matthew 5:3 (NIV)  “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”

The Kingdom of Heaven is yours today, if you’ve come to recognise your poverty without the Holy Spirit.

You are in the Kingdom of Heaven NOW if you’ve got Holy Spirit indwelling.

Awesome!

How Jesus Walked and Lived by and in the POWER of the HOLY SPIRIT.

  • The Holy Spirit came upon Jesus at His own baptism. Matthew 3:13-17.
  • The Holy Spirit came upon Jesus at His temptation. Matthew 4:1 and Luke 4:1.

The Holy Spirit departed Jesus, when the sins of the whole world came upon Him on the Cross… That’s why his cry from the cross is one of abandonment,

Matthew 27:45-46 (NIV)
45  From the sixth hour until the ninth hour darkness came over all the land.
46  About the ninth hour Jesus cried out in a loud voice, “Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani?”—which means, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”

Jesus in those hours upon the Cross, the hours of Darkness between the sixth hour and the ninth hour, He knew the presence of God the Father had gone, the Holy Spirit had at that moment in time had departed Jesus: The Bible tells us “He became SIN for us”… God hates SIN and cannot bear it in His presence… SIN must die, that’s why Jesus died upon the Cross. He took our sins upon Himself and was “FORSAKEN” by God the Father and the Spirit. Sin brings DEATH to our relationship with God. When we walk in the flesh, there is a kind of DEATH feeling that we experience and even as Christians, we can be overcome with a feeling of DREAD. But that’s NOT what the LORD wants my friends, He wants you to experience the full and abundant life, feeling the JOY of the LORD, we’ll get that feeling when we’re walking in the Spirit.

So my friends, the moment we become aware of our NEED (Poverty) of Spirit, then YOURS IS THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN. i.e. You are in the Kingdom of Heaven: you’ve become a Citizen of Heaven. From the time I began following Jesus, there have been times when I’ve been POVERTY STRICKEN (Spiritually and Materially). The times I’ve been poverty stricken spiritually, is when I’ve purposefully walked in my flesh instead of in the Spirit.

I’ll never forget the day some of our friends got their UK Passports, they proudly proclaimed, “We are now UK Citizens”…

Oh this is wonderful, for the moment you are in Holy Spirit, your Citizenship has been transferred into the Kingdom of Heaven.

The Holy Spirit is your PASSPORT into the Kingdom.

Matthew 5:3 (NIV)  “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”

There are so many times that I’ve found myself walking in the FLESH (Human power and reasoning) rather than the SPIRIT (Holy Spirit empowered walking).

However, when I’ve later realised that I’ve been doing it in my own strength, I’m so thankful, because the Spirit has led me to repentance and to seek His fullness once again. I can walk either as a Citizen of Heaven, The Kingdom of Heaven or as an ordinary Human being, a Citizen of Earth.

There will be times that you too will recognise you’ve been doing it in your own strength and in your own understanding.

We’ve got a choice to make every single day: I can live my life in the Spirit or in the Flesh.

Just because you’ve been born of the Spirit, doesn’t mean you are as full of the Holy Spirit as you can be. There’s always MORE: We need more, we need to be re-filled, refuelled, just like a car that needs to be constantly filled up with petrol, we need to keep going back to the Lord and seeking His fullness again.

Ephesians 5:15-20 (NIV)
15  Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise,
16  making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil.
17  Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is.
18  Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit.
19  Speak to one another with psalms, hymns and spiritual songs. Sing and make music in your heart to the Lord,
20  always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.

“Instead, be filled with the Spirit”: This ‘filling’ of the Spirit is not a ONE OFF event, but an ongoing reality.

We are to go on being filled with the Spirit, i.e. all of the time.

Once I held up a sponge that I’d soaked in water, the moment you lift it out of the water, the water pours out of the sponge. So it is with the Spirit, we are to be continually immersed in the Spirit, because the moment we stop being in the Spirit, we’re drained of Holy Spirit power, presence, we’re walking in the flesh.

So can you now see the prime focus of Jesus’ teaching throughout the four Gospels: We NEED the Holy Spirit to do anything of value in the Kingdom, without the Holy Spirit we are POOR (in poverty)… But as soon as we become aware of just how much we need Him; oh how blessed we are.

Matthew 5:3 (NIV)  “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”

Prayer: Oh LORD Jesus Christ, I realise that without the Holy Spirit, I’m in POVERTY, because I’m walking in the power of my flesh. Please LORD Jesus, send the Holy Spirit afresh into my being today, fill me to overflowing with Your Holy Spirit, I need You Lord. I realise that without You I can’t do anthing of value in the Kingdom, but with you I am in the Kingdom. Help me this day, to walk in the power of the Holy Spirit and to stay full of Holy Spirit. When I am weak help me to recognise that it’s because I am not  as full as I should be or could be. Amen.

Amen.

Have an awesome week in Jesus and full of Holy Spirit. Amen.

Don.

 

God’s Heart to Heal

Do you believe in the God of miracles?

Daily Spirit & Word: 753:

Can The God You Believe In Do Miracles?

“The smile on your face help me know you need me” (Knowing the Father’s Heart).

Good morning my friends, I want to put a huge wide smile on your face today. But not just on your face, on your heart too. The JOY of the LORD is my strength.

All this week we’ve been hearing about those who are sick and dying; friends, good friends, best friends, relatives: But do we actually believe in a God who cares, has compassion, is kind, gentle and loving? These are all attributes of God’s character, yes God is Holy, get’s angry as we heard yesterday, and can be full of wrath and anger against our sins. However, we also serve a God who fully revealed Himself in Jesus and before that in the Old Testament.

Listen with new ears, watch with renewed eyes to see what God is like today:

God Gives LIFE AGAIN to a Widow’s Son.

1 Kings 17:17-24 (NIV)
17  Some time later the son of the woman who owned the house became ill. He grew worse and worse, and finally stopped breathing.
18  She said to Elijah, “What do you have against me, man of God? Did you come to remind me of my sin and kill my son?”
19  “Give me your son,” Elijah replied. He took him from her arms, carried him to the upper room where he was staying, and laid him on his bed.
20  Then he cried out to the LORD, “O LORD my God, have you brought tragedy also upon this widow I am staying with, by causing her son to die?”
21  Then he stretched himself out on the boy three times and cried to the LORD, “O LORD my God, let this boy’s life return to him!”
22  The LORD heard Elijah’s cry, and the boy’s life returned to him, and he lived.
23  Elijah picked up the child and carried him down from the room into the house. He gave him to his mother and said, “Look, your son is alive!”
24  Then the woman said to Elijah, “Now I know that you are a man of God and that the word of the LORD from your mouth is the truth.”

Elijah had gone to a widow’s house, initially she thought she and her son would starve to death because of a famine. But Elijah arrived and the flour and oil didn’t run out, it was a miracle of God’s provision. Now the woman’s son, her only son, died. Just listen to her, the way she’s talking to Elijah: “What do you have against me, man of God? Did you come to remind me of my sin and kill my son?”

Often when tragedy strikes, because we’re hurting we strike out at others. Sometimes the ones who are closest to us, those who’ve been kindest to us, THEY are the ones who get blasted first. It’s both Elijah and God that this woman is shaking her fist at. “Man of God”…

But there’s more: The woman obviously had a past:

Like most of us, she’d not lived a completely righteous life, because somewhere in her past she knew she’d sinned. The knowledge of that sin had not left her, and because of her son’s death, she’d obviously been thinking to herself, “Who’s fault is it that my boy has died? Is it my fault? Did I bring this tragedy upon my son because of the things I did wrong in the past?”

We often do that too: I know I do. Whenever things go wrong, I think to myself, “Oh Lord, to what are you drawing my attention? Could it be something I’ve done?” It’s a good question. But to move from self-examination to attacking the man of God… as if God would be wrong somehow to exercise judgement at any time.

  • Perhaps the LORD was using her son’s death to get to the heart of her deepest issue in life.
  • Perhaps her son’s death was the only way the LORD would get this woman’s heart back to Himself.
  • Perhaps the LORD just wanted to show this woman most clearly that He is a God who FORGIVES SINS.

The Boy Comes Back To LIFE:

Just like Jesus who died and rose again from the dead; this boy’s life is restored by the LORD. Jesus was God’s ONE and ONLY Son, who died. The boy was the woman’s one and only son.

Elijah gives the boy back to the woman: Now listen to her response:

 1 Kings 17:24 Then the woman said to Elijah, “Now I know that you are a man of God and that the word of the LORD from your mouth is the truth.”

That “NOW I KNOW”: says a lot to me. because even though she’d been experiencing an ongoing miracle of God’s provision i.e. Her flour and oil never ran out: She’s been cooking with it for ages, but deep inside her heart there is an AVENUE OF DOUBT AND UNBELIEF. Those words “NOW I KNOW” shout out to me today.

“Donald, you’ve seen My miracles in the past, so why do you doubt today?”…

Oh LORD! “I have seen your miracles in the past, I know you goodness, kindness, mercy and love, give me a NEW HEART to believe in Your POWER to HEAL today” Amen!

The Oil and Flour Miracles wasn’t enough to move her to repent and trust the LORD completely.

The Resurrection of her son, moved the widow woman to a deeper knowledge and understanding of the LORD.

My friends, the RESURRECTION of God’s ONE and ONLY Son, Jesus Christ, moves me afresh today, to say with the woman, the widow, “NOW I KNOW”….

NOW I KNOW: God can do anything.

  • He can hear our prayer.
  • He can heal our sicknesses, diseases, blindness, deafness, hard-hardheartedness, coldness, stubbornness, sinfulness and rebellion.
  • He can deliver us from DEATH…

BUT: Do YOU Believe He WANTS to do it?

NOW I KNOW: He wants to Heal, Deliver and Forgive… TODAY.

I’m going to be praying much more, much more, for people to experience God’s HEALING touch in their lives. We are going to see miracles my friends.

My friends, doesn’t that put a huge, a massive smile on your face today? Isn’t your HEART warmed and filled with JOY because the LORD is the same, yesterday, today and forever. Amen.

Last night, we had a meeting in church about “Oh Happy Day” West Norwood, London. A festival of JOY. Saturday 16th July (Put the date in your diary and come and see God move).

The Lord gave me this song, it’s a secular song, but it spoke to me of God’s TRUTH: When you say nothing at all:

The smile on your face
Lets me know
That you need me
There’s a truth
In your eyes
Saying you’ll never leave me
The touch of your hand says
You’ll catch me
Whenever I fall
You say it best
When you say
Nothing at all

My friends, God NEEDS you to be His hands, His feet, His heart to go to this hurting world and bring His HEALING: Will you go and touch, speak and heal today?

Some people argue, God can do it, but my friends, He’s chosen a way to do it; through His people. He’s going to do it through YOU! Have faith in the God who wants to Heal today.

Have a fantastic weekend, full of faith, full of trust and full of the JOY of the LORD.

Knowing the FATHER’S HEART.

Don.