Hearing The Voice Of Jesus

His Sheep Hear His Voice

Daily Spirit & Word, 490: Hearing The Voice Of Jesus.

40 Days With Jesus: Day 5: Hearing The Voice Of Jesus.

Good morning my friends, we had another brilliant Kingdom day on Friday. In the afternoon we went out onto the Streets sharing the Gospel with folks and handing out tracts. We got into quite a few great conversations, but the one that stands out the most was an elderly lady, who was so cold towards Jesus that it literally made the hairs on my neck stand up straight, but my colleague David was very gentle, calm and persistent with her. Though initially she was completely indifferent, she eventually warmed up a little and began to share why she didn’t believe or wouldn’t believe. Finally we left with a smile and a prayer for her. Not everyone welcomes the Good News and to some, as the Bible says, “We’re the smell of death” for them. It touched both of us, because this lady was quite elderly and ready to take the leap from Earth into Eternity unprepared. It was like having someone on a plane that was about to crash and the pilot had already issued the passengers with a parachute, but she was like one of the passengers who’s refusing to put her parachute on, declaring, “I don’t believe this plane is going to crash, so why do I need to put this thing on?”. We know that anyone who’s not trusted in the Lord Jesus before the dreadful day of departure arrives will spend Eternity in Hell and yesterday we felt for this woman. She’d heard the Gospel, but rejected it many times in her life. We don’t know the reasons why, but she was as closed as closed could be. Please pray for her today. We had many great conversations and some that led people to point of wanting to trust the Saviour for Salvation, but I share about the old lady, because not everyone will be hearing the voice of Jesus as we speak, they’ll be forever hearing by not perceiving.

Hearing the Voice of Jesus.

John 20:15-16 (NIV)
15  “Woman,” he said, “why are you crying? Who is it you are looking for?” Thinking he was the gardener, she said, “Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have put him, and I will get him.” 16  Jesus said to her, “Mary.” She turned towards him and cried out in Aramaic, “Rabboni!” (which means Teacher).

Today on the fifth day of 40 Days With Jesus, we’ve reached an important occasion. In John 20:15-16, we see something really significant. Dave Smith calls it, “The Most Significant Moment In Human History”, because it’s the day that Jesus spoke in His resurrected body to another human being. The Lord of Heaven spoke to Mary Magdalene, she was the first to hear His voice. It’s important for another reason, because she heard Jesus in the same way that each one of us who come to faith in Him also hear the revelation of His voice, because my friends Jesus is speaking to us today.

The Scene At The Tomb Of Jesus.

Mary Magdalene was looking for Jesus body, she’d told the Disciples the body was gone, they’d come and inspected the tomb and returned home, but Mary lingered, crying and weeping, desperate to find the Lord’s body. She’d failed to recognise the Angelic visitors in the tomb as being something Heavenly happening with Jesus resurrected body. Now she turns to Jesus, thinking He’s the gardener, and Jesus asks her a question. He engages her in conversation: He asked her, “Woman, why are you crying? Who is it that you are looking for?”. Even though it was Jesus speaking, she didn’t recognise His voice.

My friends, there are people being called in the God’s Kingdom today, He’s speaking to them, but they are NOT recognising who’s voice it is. Whenever, the Gospel is proclaimed, it’s God calling and reaching out through the preacher’s voice into the hearts and lives of those who listen. Jesus said that would happen,  Mark 4:11-12 11  He told them, “The secret of the kingdom of God has been given to you. But to those on the outside everything is said in parables 12  so that, ” ‘they may be ever seeing but never perceiving, and ever hearing but never understanding; otherwise they might turn and be forgiven!’

2 Timothy 3:6-7  “They are the kind who worm their way into homes and gain control over weak-willed women, who are loaded down with sins and are swayed by all kinds of evil desires, 7  always learning but never able to acknowledge the truth.”

Mary didn’t recognise it was Jesus speaking to her.

Jesus Shows Himself:

It’s one thing to rise from the dead and dissappear into Eternity, but quite another to rise and then show yourself ALIVE to people, that’s what Jesus was doing and He did it first with Mary Magdalene.

Not A Vision or A Ghost:

Secondly, it’s important to note that Mary is not just seeing a vision or a ghost or something she’s imagined, Jesus is REAL, He’s ALIVE and He could be touched by people. Yes, Jesus could appear and disappear, but when He was with people; He spoke, ate and could be touched by them. Remember the incident with doubting Thomas, we come to that later in the course. Jesus is real and alive today my friends, and He’s promised to be right there with us when we gather together in His name and He’s also promised that He’ll be IN those who trust in Him for Salvation. You can actually KNOW Jesus today.

Jesus Call His Sheep By Name:

Thirdly and of immense importance for everyone today, is that Jesus calls Mary by name. He knew Mary and He knows each and everyone of us too. John records that Jesus is the Good Shepherd.

John 10:1-5 1  “I tell you the truth, the man who does not enter the sheep pen by the gate, but climbs in by some other way, is a thief and a robber. 2  The man who enters by the gate is the shepherd of his sheep. 3  The watchman opens the gate for him, and the sheep listen to his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. 4  When he has brought out all his own, he goes on ahead of them, and his sheep follow him because they know his voice. 5  But they will never follow a stranger; in fact, they will run away from him because they do not recognise a stranger’s voice.”

It was only when Jesus said, “Mary” that she knew who He was. She wasn’t expecting to find Jesus alive, that’s probably why she didn’t recognise Him at first, but when He spoke her name, WOWzer! Suddenly her revelation came. “He’s ALIVE”… You can hear it in her head, she grabs hold of Jesus. She touches the risen Lord. He tells her not to hold onto him.

My friends, Jesus is calling each and every one in the world today. He’s calling out and some listen, some hear, some respond and some begin to worship. Mary called Him “Rabboni” which means; ‘Teacher’.

Mary was called by Jesus, she heard His voice and recognised who He was. She was led that day our of her darkness into the light of understanding and revelation, for distress and grief into everlasting joy, because she met the risen Saviour. We can get that same kind of revelation for ourselves today. When we meet the risen Saviour by faith, when we read God’s Words in the Bible, He’ll speak to us to, Jesus speaks to us today by His Spirit and He’s calling you too my friends.

Jesus is calling everyone into a NEW and DEEPER understanding of who He is and what He wants for your life. Will you come and spend a day with Jesus. We’re spending 40 Days With Jesus and each day our understanding is growing.

Have an awesome Saturday my friends, come tomorrow for Worship, come on Tuesday for the gathering together to watch the video for the week and share in discussion what you’ve been learning every day.

God bless and keep you in Jesus today,

Don.

Points to Ponder:

  •  What an incredible thought, that God Almighty, the King of the Heavens, knows you and me by name! Do you need to hear Jesus calling your name?
  • How aware are you that Jesus is a real person, with thoughts, feelings, a personality and a voice? What difference does this make to the way you can relate to Him today?
  • How will you live differently today knowing that Jesus is present with you right now by the Holy Spirit? Just as Jesus spoke to Mary in her despair, so He can and will speak to you, too. The great news is that your ‘lows’ can be made ‘highs’ by just one word from the Saviour of your soul. 

Prayer:

Dear Lord Jesus Christ, I thank You Lord for caring enough about me to call my name and I thank You for making it possible for me to hear your voice and respond to Your call. Holy Spirit, I welcome You into my life and ask that You would make real to me the presence of Jesus in a wonderful fresh way today. I know that I’m honoured that You would choose to make Your home in my heart. Show me how I can be a great host to You today. Help me to know Your Presence wherever I am in the world and to be listening out for Your voice. Amen. 

Note: 40 Days With Jesus Home Page.

40 Days With Jesus Video (Scroll down to view video).

40 Days Home Page

 

 

The Name of The LORD

In The Name of Jesus

Daily Spirit & Word, 483: In The NAME of Jesus.

“The Name of the LORD is; A Strong Tower.”

 

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

Good morning my friends, I do hope you’ve all managed to enjoy the Easter Week in some way, I’ve taken a couple of days off to spend time with my wife and some of the grandchildren. We’ve visited two of England’s most famous Castles: The Tower of London and Leeds Castle in Kent. Personally I found Leeds Castle to be a far more enjoyable experience, but they are both well worth a visit. What struck me was on each occasion a song was in my heart as I walked around, “The Name of the LORD is a Strong Tower” we normally sing that with all our children and have actions and hand gestures and movement.

Those castles have mostly been taken over and defeated not by someone breaching their defences or knocking holes in the massive thick walls, but from traitors within who let the opponents, enemies and foes come in and overrun the garrison. It’s amazing, they are very strongly fortified against attack, they’ve got trained troops ready to respond when the alarm is given, but nothing, no armaments, no amount of guards, no portcullis, nor arrows or strong-bows can fend off an attack from within.

 Portcullis:

Portcullis is from the French porte coulissante or gliding door, it is a kind of very heavy vertically-opening gate typically found in medieval fortifications, consisting of a latticed grille made of wood or metal, or a combination of the two, with sharpened spiked ends. They are normally held open but ready to be dropped at a moments notice upon the enemy as they try to storm the castle. You’ll notice these at the Tower of London and Leeds Castle.

A Strong Christian Tower: My friends, though we may put up defences that look impressive to the world as Christians we can’t fool our greatest enemy. Most Christian are brought down, not with diseases or lack of wealth or lack of health, but when we’re at our strongest and most impressive. We can sometimes put on a marvellous display for the world and fellow believers: We can come to Church regularly, carry a heavy Bible wherever we go, wear a cross to show we are following Jesus. Take holy communion regularly, attend Bible study and Fellowship groups, be known as a man or woman of prayer and have a powerful ministry for the Lord. To the world we’d look like very strong and impressive Christians who follow the Lord Jesus Christ. However, we have a much more cunning enemy, because he sees all of these outward signs and laughs at them, for he knows us, he observes our lives, our private lives, and he’s waiting and watching for an opportunity to attack and bypass those obvious defences. You see our enemy knows us so well, too well, that he knows the secret ways to get into the heart if the strong castles of the Christian life, and let loose his troops on the inside. How does the enemy do it? He is one who knows not only our strengths, but weaknesses as well.

You’ve probably all heard or read about those amazing Brothers and Sisters in the LORD, who for many years were following the Lord Jesus, but somehow we led astray and have fallen into sin. We spoke to a woman on Wednesday night last, that couldn’t fully commit to the Lord Jesus, because she’d observed so many, who were once impressive MEN OF GOD who’d fallen away from the faith. Satan can bring anyone down with a great big crash, then all of our impressive outer-structure, clean clothes, flashy suits or power-based ministry will count for absolutely nothing in the attack that ensues. Remember the Bible calls Satan a prowling, roaring Lion. Oh yes, we can all sing about how he was defeated when Christ died and rose again from the dead. He is a defeated foe, He’s lost the whole war, but He’s in the process of fighting a rear-guard retreat. Do you know that when Germany was on the defensive, they killed more Allied troops in the last year on the retreat than at any other time during the Second World War? Satan knows he’s defeated, but he’s not done yet, that’s why the Bible calls him a roaring lion, he’s been wounded, a lion that’s wounded is far more dangerous than a lion that’s perfectly well. He roars in agony and fight for his life more viscously than a normal lion. Any attack against a wounded lion will result in the most powerful swiping of his claws. He’s dangerous and he knows all your weaknesses.

 The NAME of the LORD IS a Strong Tower.

When under attack a Righteous Follower of the Lord Jesus Christ will run to HIM. Running to the LORD Jesus what does that involve and what does it mean?

Jesus NAME: The Name of the LORD in the Old Testament (Old Covenant) was Jehovah. The Lord’s name had so many variants to describe His Divine Characteristics. Names for God in the Old Testament: https://www.blueletterbible.org/study/misc/name_god.cfm God is so good and powerful and His Name signifies His entire glory.

 Jesus and the Father are ONE: Jesus said we should use His Name.

You know when we pray and say at the end of our prayers, “In the Name of Jesus. Amen” It’s not just any old name we tag on at the end. It’s like the signiture on a Cheque that guarantees we’ll get the money transfered into our account. It’s like the name on the back of your Credit Card or like the unique finger-print that unlocks the latest iPhone 6. Jesus Christ’s NAME means everything else must bow before Him. Take a very careful look through the list of verses that describe Jesus NAME and all about Jesus below. I’ve been meditating on all these verses today and oh WOWzer! What POWER and GLORY are revealed in Jesus Name and who He is.

  •  Sickness must submit to Jesus NAME. (Blindness, Lameness, Deafness, Death).
  • Nature must submit to Jesus NAME. (Water, Storms, Wine,)
  • Diseases must submit to Jesus NAME.
  • Demons must submit and tremble at Jesus NAME. (Satan and EVERY Demon).
  • Satan himself must submit and tremble at the NAME of Jesus Christ of Nazareth.
  • Death cannot battle against the NAME of Jesus. (Lazarus, The Funeral of a child, Jesus own Resurrection).

Oh my friends, we’ve got to get a NEW grip on the reality of the NAME of Jesus Christ and His AWESOME Power. No other Name under Heaven given to men… WOWzer!

 The Follower of Jesus has Enemies:

We have got some POWERFUL enemies against us my friends;

  • Your enemy the Devil: Prowling Lion.
  • Your enemy the Flesh: The internal battle of your sinful nature against the Holy Spirit’s rule in your life.
  • Your enemy the World:
  • Your enemy the …………

We’ve got a whole host of armies ranged against our strongest towers my friends, how can we ever hope to win in this endless, life-long battle. One of my friends passed a message during the weak, he’d lost a battle in an area of life, he knew his weaknesses and gave into temptation, but he also knew and knows today that we’ve won the WAR, we may loose the occasional battle, but it’s good sometimes, even in defeat to remind the enemy, “I may have lost this little battle, but I know that my Saviour has won the war”. Christ has overcome the enemy and so can you my friends, but we must shore up our defences by being clever and knowing our weakest areas in our personality and taking appropriate measures to ensure the enemy never gains a foothold into our hearts again. We might possible loose a few battles, until we can see that the enemy is not really all that clever and he keeps getting into our Towers the same old ways.

It’s not just knowing the NAME of Jesus though, because as you’ll read below, even the demons know and believe in Jesus and they tremble, but it’s not about just knowing His name or tagging his glorious name onto everything, it is about actually Knowing Jesus. We know HIM when we receive Him as both LORD and Saviour. There’s no other way than to come to Jesus confessing our sins to Him, Repenting from those sin and turning in Faith and Trust to Receiven Him as LORD. Once we do that, and we put our faith in His death for our sins on the Cross only then can we say that we know Jesus, because He’ll respond my friends, He’ll give you the eternal gift of the Holy Spirit who’ll come into your life and give you the NEW BIRTH, you’ll be born again by God’s Holy Spirit and you’ll be a member of God’s family forever. Only THEN can you rightly use the Name of Jesus for He will be in you. You will be His ambassador in the world and you’ll be able to defeat any evil forces that come against you, even your own flesh. Get a handle on who Jesus is by reading, meditating and believing the verses below.

Leeds Castle and The Tower of London have stood for over 1000 years, but various kings have been defeated, because they lost the battle within rather than from an outside attack. You will be VICTORIOUS over ALL your enemies IN Jesus Christ. He IS your Strong Tower.

Jesus Christ is the NAME above ALL names. He IS your strong tower and every time you feel attacked either from without or within you can RUN to Jesus and use His POWERFUL NAME to defeat ALL your enemies. Amen! You MUST RUN to Jesus Christ quickly when you are under attack.

My friends, we need to know Jesus as LORD and Christ before we can ever use His NAME effectively in prayer. His Name will be as empty and powerless as a dead mobile phone, until it’s charged up with the POWER of Heaven. Amen!

God bless and have an awesome Saturday with Jesus.

Don.

BTW: Leeds Castle is an amazing place to visit with family. There’s something to do for everyone. It’s not cheap, but well worth a visit if you can afford it. Take a packed lunch, we didn’t and had to pay the price for terrible food at extortionate prices. Next time 🙂 The grounds are awesome and the Castle one of the most impressive in England.

 Jesus NAME: It’s POWER and Who He is:

Acts 4:12 ESV “And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.”
Philippians 2:9-11 ESV     “Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”
John 14:13 ESV “Whatever you ask in my name, this I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.”
John 14:6 ESV “Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”
1 Corinthians 6:11 ESV “And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.”
Acts 4:30 ESV “While you stretch out your hand to heal, and signs and wonders are performed through the name of your holy servant Jesus.”
Matthew 1:21 ESV “She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.”
Luke 10:17 ESV “The seventy-two returned with joy, saying, “Lord, even the demons are subject to us in your name!”
Jeremiah 10:6 ESV “There is none like you, O Lord; you are great, and your name is great in might.”
Acts 2:38 ESV “And Peter said to them, “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.”
Acts 3:12-16 ESV “And when Peter saw it he addressed the people: “Men of Israel, why do you wonder at this, or why do you stare at us, as though by our own power or piety we have made him walk? The God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, the God of our fathers, glorified his servant Jesus, whom you delivered over and denied in the presence of Pilate, when he had decided to release him. But you denied the Holy and Righteous One, and asked for a murderer to be granted to you, and you killed the Author of life, whom God raised from the dead. To this we are witnesses. And his name—by faith in his name—has made this man strong whom you see and know, and the faith that is through Jesus has given the man this perfect health in the presence of you all.”
Romans 10:13 ESV “For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”
Revelation 22:13 ESV “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end.”
John 8:58 ESV “Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I am.”
Mark 16:17 ESV “And these signs will accompany those who believe: in my name they will cast out demons; they will speak in new tongues;”
Acts 8:12 ESV “But when they believed Philip as he preached good news about the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women.”
Isaiah 9:6 ESV “For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”
Exodus 3:14 ESV “God said to Moses, “I am who I am.” And he said, “Say this to the people of Israel, ‘I am has sent me to you.’”
John 16:26 ESV “In that day you will ask in my name, and I do not say to you that I will ask the Father on your behalf;”
Matthew 28:18 ESV “And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.”
Malachi 1:11 ESV “For from the rising of the sun to its setting my name will be great among the nations, and in every place incense will be offered to my name, and a pure offering. For my name will be great among the nations, says the Lord of hosts.”
Isaiah 26:4 ESV “Trust in the Lord forever, for the Lord God is an everlasting rock.”
Proverbs 18:10 ESV “The name of the Lord is a strong tower; the righteous man runs into it and is safe.”
John 1:3 ESV “All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made.”
John 14:26 ESV “But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.”
Acts 3:6 ESV “But Peter said, “I have no silver and gold, but what I do have I give to you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk!”
1 John 5:13 ESV “I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God that you may know that you have eternal life.”
John 5:43 ESV “I have come in my Father’s name, and you do not receive me. If another comes in his own name, you will receive him.”
John 1:1 ESV “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”
Mark 3:11 ESV “And whenever the unclean spirits saw him, they fell down before him and cried out, “You are the Son of God.”
Psalm 68:4 ESV “Sing to God, sing praises to his name; lift up a song to him who rides through the deserts; his name is the Lord; exult before him!”
Revelation 19:16 ESV “On his robe and on his thigh he has a name written, King of kings and Lord of lords.”
1 John 3:16 ESV “By this we know love, that he laid down his life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for the brothers.”
John 1:31 ESV “I myself did not know him, but for this purpose I came baptizing with water, that he might be revealed to Israel.”
John 1:14 ESV “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.”
Matthew 28:19 ESV “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,”
Matthew 6:9 ESV “Pray then like this: “Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name.”
Isaiah 40:3-5 ESV “A voice cries: “In the wilderness prepare the way of the Lord; make straight in the desert a highway for our God. Every valley shall be lifted up, and every mountain and hill be made low; the uneven ground shall become level, and the rough places a plain. And the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together, for the mouth of the Lord has spoken.”
Isaiah 7:14 ESV “Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel. (Which means ‘God with us’)”
Exodus 3:13-14 ESV “Then Moses said to God, “If I come to the people of Israel and say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you,’ and they ask me, ‘What is his name?’ what shall I say to them?” God said to Moses, “I am who I am.” And he said, “Say this to the people of Israel, ‘I am has sent me to you.’”
1 John 1:9 ESV “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”
James 5:14 ESV “Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord.”
James 2:19 ESV “You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe—and shudder!”
Hebrews 13:15 ESV “Through him then let us continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of lips that acknowledge his name.”
Acts 2:1-47 ESV “When the day of Pentecost arrived, they were all together in one place. And suddenly there came from heaven a sound like a mighty rushing wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. And divided tongues as of fire appeared to them and rested on each one of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance. Now there were dwelling in Jerusalem Jews, devout men from every nation under heaven. …”
John 3:18 ESV “Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God.”
Luke 4:41 ESV “And demons also came out of many, crying, “You are the Son of God!” But he rebuked them and would not allow them to speak, because they knew that he was the Christ.”
Proverbs 22:1 ESV “A good name is to be chosen rather than great riches, and favour is better than silver or gold.”
Ephesians 1:20-22 ESV “That he worked in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come. And he put all things under his feet and gave him as head over all things to the church,”
Acts 9:28 ESV “So he went in and out among them at Jerusalem, preaching boldly in the name of the Lord.”
Luke 23:33 ESV “And when they came to the place that is called The Skull, there they crucified him, and the criminals, one on his right and one on his left.”
Luke 11:1 ESV “Now Jesus was praying in a certain place, and when he finished, one of his disciples said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray, as John taught his disciples.”
Luke 2:1-52 ESV “In those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered. This was the first registration when Quirinius was governor of Syria. And all went to be registered, each to his own town. And Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the town of Nazareth, to Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, to be registered with Mary, his betrothed, who was with child. …
Mark 16:16 ESV “Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.”

Matthew 28:19-20 ESV “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”

Proverbs 30:4 ESV “Who has ascended to heaven and come down? Who has gathered the wind in his fists? Who has wrapped up the waters in a garment? Who has established all the ends of the earth? What is his name, and what is his son’s name? Surely you know!”

Genesis 3:15 ESV “I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and her offspring; he shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heel.”

Revelation 1:8 ESV ““I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, “who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.”

Revelation 1:5 ESV “And from Jesus Christ the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the ruler of kings on earth. To him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood.”

Hebrews 6:10-12 ESV “For God is not unjust so as to overlook your work and the love that you have shown for his name in serving the saints, as you still do. And we desire each one of you to show the same earnestness to have the full assurance of hope until the end, so that you may not be sluggish, but imitators of those who through faith and patience inherit the promises.”

Colossians 1:16 ESV “For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him.”

1 Corinthians 8:6 ESV “Yet for us there is one God, the Father, from whom are all things and for whom we exist, and one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom are all things and through whom we exist.”

Acts 22:16 ESV “And now why do you wait? Rise and be baptized and wash away your sins, calling on his name.’”

Acts 2:32 ESV “This Jesus God raised up, and of that we all are witnesses.”

John 5:42-43 ESV “But I know that you do not have the love of God within you. I have come in my Father’s name, and you do not receive me. If another comes in his own name, you will receive him.”

John 5:18 ESV “This was why the Jews were seeking all the more to kill him, because not only was he breaking the Sabbath, but he was even calling God his own Father, making himself equal with God.”

John 3:33 ESV “Whoever receives his testimony sets his seal to this, that God is true.”

Luke 12:9 ESV “But the one who denies me before men will be denied before the angels of God.”

Mark 9:38 ESV “John said to him, “Teacher, we saw someone casting out demons in your name, and we tried to stop him, because he was not following us.”

Mark 1:1 ESV “The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God.”

Isaiah 53:9 ESV “And they made his grave with the wicked and with a rich man in his death, although he had done no violence, and there was no deceit in his mouth.”

Psalm 90:2 ESV “Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever you had formed the earth and the world, from everlasting to everlasting you are God.”

Psalm 45:7 ESV “You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness. Therefore God, your God, has anointed you with the oil of gladness beyond your companions;”

Exodus 3:14-15 ESV “God said to Moses, “I am who I am.” And he said, “Say this to the people of Israel, ‘I am has sent me to you.’” God also said to Moses, “Say this to the people of Israel, ‘The Lord, the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has sent me to you.’ This is my name forever, and thus I am to be remembered throughout all generations.”

Genesis 17:5 ESV “No longer shall your name be called Abram, but your name shall be Abraham, for I have made you the father of a multitude of nations.”

2 Corinthians 5:17 ESV “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.”

Romans 8:7 ESV “For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not submit to God’s law; indeed, it cannot.”
Acts 10:43 ESV “To him all the prophets bear witness that everyone who believes in him receives forgiveness of sins through his name.”
Acts 2:22 ESV “Men of Israel, hear these words: Jesus of Nazareth, a man attested to you by God with mighty works and wonders and signs that God did through him in your midst, as you yourselves know—”
John 17:26 ESV “I made known to them your name, and I will continue to make it known, that the love with which you have loved me may be in them, and I in them.”
John 14:14 ESV “If you ask me anything in my name, I will do it.”
John 12:37 ESV “Though he had done so many signs before them, they still did not believe in him,”
John 10:30 ESV “I and the Father are one.”
John 8:24 ESV “I told you that you would die in your sins, for unless you believe that I am he you will die in your sins.”
John 1:1-51 ESV “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life, and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. …”
Mark 15:34 ESV “And at the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, “Eloi, Eloi, lema sabachthani?” which means, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”
Matthew 3:11 ESV ““I baptize you with water for repentance, but he who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.”
Micah 3:7 ESV “The seers shall be disgraced, and the diviners put to shame; they shall all cover their lips, for there is no answer from God.”
Daniel 7:13 ESV ““I saw in the night visions, and behold, with the clouds of heaven there came one like a son of man, and he came to the Ancient of Days and was presented before him.”
Isaiah 44:6 ESV “Thus says the Lord, the King of Israel and his Redeemer, the Lord of hosts: “I am the first and I am the last; besides me there is no god.”
Song of Solomon 1:1-17 ESV “The Song of Songs, which is Solomon’s. Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth! For your love is better than wine; your anointing oils are fragrant; your name is oil poured out; therefore virgins love you. Draw me after you; let us run. The king has brought me into his chambers. We will exult and rejoice in you; we will extol your love more than wine; rightly do they love you. I am very dark, but lovely, O daughters of Jerusalem, like the tents of Kedar, like the curtains of Solomon. …”
Psalm 68:18 ESV “You ascended on high, leading a host of captives in your train and receiving gifts among men, even among the rebellious, that the Lord God may dwell there.”
Exodus 20:3 ESV ““You shall have no other gods before me.”
Exodus 6:3 ESV “I appeared to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, as God Almighty, but by my name the Lord I did not make myself known to them.”
Genesis 1:1 ESV “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.”
Revelation 12:10 ESV “And I heard a loud voice in heaven, saying, “Now the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God and the authority of his Christ have come, for the accuser of our brothers has been thrown down, who accuses them day and night before our God.”
Ephesians 3:9 ESV “And to bring to light for everyone what is the plan of the mystery hidden for ages in God who created all things,”
Galatians 3:27 ESV “For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ.” Have you put on the Lord Jesus Christ?
Acts 13:8 ESV “But Elymas the magician (for that is the meaning of his name) opposed them, seeking to turn the proconsul away from the faith.”
John 5:17-18 ESV “But Jesus answered them, “My Father is working until now, and I am working.” This was why the Jews were seeking all the more to kill him, because not only was he breaking the Sabbath, but he was even calling God his own Father, making himself equal with God.”

There’s More, So Much MORE.

Progressive Revelations

Daily Spirit & Word, 479: There’s MORE, so much MORE.

God’s Progressive Revelations For Followers of Jesus.

Good morning my friends. WOWzer! What an awesome Good Friday! The Walk of Witness was fantastic, we had a good number more than last year and a lovely time of worship, prayer, proclamation and witness, then some fellowship afterwards. God’s truly GOOD and it was a Great Good Friday. Today, we’re looking at how God wants to use us and to give us much more than we can ever imagine.

1 Corinthians 2:1-10
1  When I came to you, brothers, I did not come with eloquence or superior wisdom as I proclaimed to you the testimony about God.
2  For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and him crucified.
3  I came to you in weakness and fear, and with much trembling.
4  My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power,
5  so that your faith might not rest on men’s wisdom, but on God’s power.
6 We do, however, speak a message of wisdom among the mature, but not the wisdom of this age or of the rulers of this age, who are coming to nothing.
7  No, we speak of God’s secret wisdom, a wisdom that has been hidden and that God destined for our glory before time began.
8  None of the rulers of this age understood it, for if they had, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.
9  However, as it is written: “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him”—
10  but God has revealed it to us by his Spirit. The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God.

Romans 8:11 “And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit, who lives in you.”

This passage speaks to me to loudly of the Holy Trinity: The Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead: Who’s that talking about, but the Father (As you’ll see when you read this verse in context). So the Father, who raised Jesus from the dead by the Spirit, will also give LIFE to your mortal bodies (A mortal body is a dead body), how does He, the Father give us this life? “by or through His Spirit who lives in you”.

Ephesians 3:20 (NIV) “Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us…”

I’ve heard Christians say (foolishly), “Jesus, repentance, faith and worship, I can cope with, but I don’t want the ‘Spirit’ thing, it’s way too spooky”. People are afraid of what the ‘Spirit’ might make them do. They’ve seen the excesses or extremes and they’ve decided in their hearts, “That’s not for me”. They come to that conclusion through fear of what might be, but they’re simply refusing the very things that Father God has provided that are necessary for the NORMAL Spiritual life. For the man or the woman without the Spirit doesn’t belong to God. That’s why I said, “Foolishly”, because they don’t have they Spirit, they are unaware of their folly or foolishness. The things of the Spirit are foolishness to them.

There’s More, so Much MORE that you can ever imagine with God.

So many people, who think they are Christian by what they do, have been won to their supposed faith by mere human wisdom, argument or persuasion, but those who’re born of the Spirit have not come intellectually alone, they’ve perhaps been persuaded by the Gospel, but they’ve not simply rested on intellectual agreement, but have moved from that mental assent to faith: For God’s Spirit who draws us to faith and trust in Christ doesn’t want us to simply agree with the gospel, He also wants us to act upon what we’ve become convinced of; that act leads to conversion, to the filling with God’s Spirit, to new life in the Spirit and a transformational experience takes place. New life is not just an intellectual concept, but something to be lived.

1 Cor 2:9 “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love Him”

My friends, you or I can’t contain God within a box. No matter what revelation you get from God, no matter how ‘Spiritual’ you think you are, there is ALWAYS, ALWAYS more, so much more than we could ever imagine.

That was the experience of the Ancient Saints like; Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Moses and Joshua: God took them from one point of faith and experience to another, to new levels of revelation and understanding of who God was and what life can be like when we trust Him.

THE STAGES OF REVELATION FOR ABRAHAM.

Just consider the stages of revelation for Abraham for an example;

A) At Haran Abraham had “I WILL SHOW YOU”

He was Taken With The Promise: “I Will Show You”.

He was taken from Haran by God with this promise; Genesis 12:1-3 (NIV) The LORD had said to Abram, “Leave your country, your people and your father’s household and go to the land I will show you. 2  “I will make you into a great nation and I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing. 3  I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse; and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you.”

B) In Canaan Abraham had this promise from God: “THIS IS THE LAND”.

Genesis 12:7 “The LORD appeared to Abram and said, “To your offspring I will give this land.” So he built an altar there to the LORD, who had appeared to him.”

C) At Bethel Abraham had; “THE LAND THAT YOU SEE”.

At Bethel Abraham Saw it:

Genesis 13:14-17 (NIV) The LORD said to Abram after Lot had parted from him, “Lift up your eyes from where you are and look north and south, east and west. 15  All the land that you see I will give to you and your offspring for ever. 16  I will make your offspring like the dust of the earth, so that if anyone could count the dust, then your offspring could be counted. 17  Go, walk through the length and breadth of the land, for I am giving it to you.”

Can you see the progressive nature of the revelations of God’s Promises? God’s Provisions? God’s Guidances? God’s Blessings? They’re forever growing, expanding and extending for Abraham. What did Abraham do to earn these promises and rewards? Nothing, but he Believed God and Acted upon what he believed.

  • Abraham wasn’t just intellectually convinced that God could do what He promised.
  • He didn’t just believe it with his mind.
  • He acted upon God’s promises and trusted God, he followed God’s directions.
Progressive Revelations
More, so much more.

It’s FAITH expressed in ACTION. or as some have said, “FAITH & DEEDS” Jesus said, “FAITH is obedience to His commands”.

God said of Abraham in the;

 Old Testament: Genesis 15:6 “Abram believed the LORD, and he credited it to him as righteousness.” Notice also at the end of chapter 15 how the Lord’s promise of the Land had expanded much further than Abraham’s eyes could ever see physidally. His promises and revelations grew even greater than Abraham could ever imagine. Just because he believed the LORD.

 New Testament: Romans 4:3, 22 “Abraham believed God” WOWzer!

Abraham took God at His word and trusted in God’s promises. Abraham had been given the gift of faith that enabled him to trust God and take God at his WORD. Not mere intellectual agreement, but being convinced of it he acted upon what he believed. James 2:22-23 (NIV) “You see that his faith and his actions were working together, and his faith was made complete by what he did. 23  And the scripture was fulfilled that says, “Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness,” and he was called God’s friend.

Paul didn’t just go and preach the Gospel, as so many Christian do. No he came and preached it, but he also demonstrated it with power and miracles and wonders. Signs and wonders will accompany your proclamation my friends, but we need to be obedient and do what Paul did, what the Apostles and early Christians did, by being obedient to Jesus Commands to Go; God’s Spirit and blessing, touching, delivering and healing, bringing God’s Kingdom into the lives of others in a demonstration of God’s POWER.

My friends, the LIFE of the Spirit that Jesus has called His followers to is the same. It’s life in the Spirit, believing the promises of God, taking God at His Word and being obedient to His commands. Jesus said, “if you love me you’ll obey my commands.” We know that we love Jesus if we’re living in obedience to His commands. They won’t be too burdensome, they’ll be easy in the Spirit. When we’re weak or failing any of Jesus commands, then we know what to do, for we need more of God’s Spirit to enable us to live. We need to be full of God’s Spirit for every single day. We’ll never get to the point in our Spiritual walk that we don’t need God’s Spirit. We won’t want to live without the Spirit once we’ve begun.

Abraham was promised, those you bless will be blessed. We’ve been given similar promises by Jesus.

Abraham was promised, those who bless you will be blessed by the LORD. When people give you even a cup of water just because you are a follower of Jesus, they’re going to be blessed too.

My friends, life in the Spirit is just like Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Moses, Joshua, Elijah, Peter, James, John, Stephen and Paul, and countless thousands of others, but you’ll also get progressive revelations yourself from God’s Spirit. You’ll experience more than you can ever imagine or conceive.

“No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him”

As soon as you think you’ve arrived, guess what? God’s got far more than you’ll ever imagine.

I’m looking forward to just one more day living in God’s Kingdom Promises for the followers of Jesus Christ. Amen!

Life in the Kingdom: Read again Rosa’s Story from Thursday’s Daily Spirit & Word: The Kingdom of Power (Rosa’s Story).

Ephesians 3:20 (NIV) “Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us…” He’s in you my friends, when you trusted Jesus, He’s going to use you in Kingdom Service today.

Resurrection Sunday is going to be AWESOME tomorrow: Because the SAME Spirit, the Holy Spirit, that raised Jesus from DEATH, is the one who gives us LIFE in our mortal (dead) bodies. Praise the LORD and let us live in the Spirit today.

Don.

There’s More, so Much MORE than you can ever imagine in the Normal Christian Life.

 

The Kingdom of Power

God's Kingdom Power

Daily Spirit & Word, 477, The Kingdom of POWER.

 1 Corinthians 4:20 “For the kingdom of God is not a matter of talk but of power.”

Good morning my friends. What can I say about last night’s Gospel outreach? Just one word; “WOWzer”. Well perhaps a few more 🙂 We’ve been talking for ages about seeing the Harvest and leading people to faith and trust in the Lord Jesus Christ, well last night was truly awesome. (If you don’t read anything else, please you must read Rosa’s story at the bottom of this page). But it began in the afternoon, when I felt the Lord wanted me to go and see a man who was feeling down, depressed by a situation he was going through and confessed that he’d also contemplated taking his own life. I telephoned David, a member of our Evangelism Team, and we got together to pray for him first, before going to see him.

I shared with David, that the Kingdom of God is not just about words, not just about sharing Jesus and using God’s law to bring conviction of sin and help people to come to an awareness of their need for the Saviour, but about demonstrating God’s power. So we began to pray for Bill, when we left David’s house we were buzzing. On the way to Bill’s house we met a lady called Dorothy, she was walking down Bill’s road. It was strange because we just said “good afternoon” as if about to walk past, but God had different plans, we were into a conversation about God and His Spirit almost immediately. She was talking about being a Pentecostal and how she’d died and been to Heaven. However, we sensed that she needed prayer. So we offered and tears were streaming down her face. I don’t know why God wanted us to meet up with Dorothy, but after praying and praising Jesus she exchanged telephone numbers with me, she departed with great joy. WOW! it was a power encounter.

When we got to Bill’s house, there was no one in, so after leaving a Kingdom Coin 🙂 (a little coin with the Ten Commandments, we walked back down Bill’s road. When we got to the end, he turned the corner and we almost bumped into him. He smiled and we all went back to Bill’s house. After making us tea and giving us biscuits, David shared with Bill about not being overwhelmed with fears, and about how we can have real peace inside, even though there’s a storm raging. He shared how King David had that peace, but it’s a peace that’s available for everyone.

I then shared from Psalm 40 and how we can be lifted out of any pit that we can’t get out of ourselves. I said, “Depression and suicidal thoughts are from Satan. When a person is feeling like that, they can’t just pull themselves together, they can’t pull themselves out of the pit, that’s when we need the Lord’s almighty hand to reach in a grab us. He reaches in, in His POWER and pulls us out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and the mire and then He does something wonderful. This is amazing Bill, Jesus will set your feet upon a ROCK: Jesus Christ Himself is that ROCK. He’ll give you a firm place to stand. Bill was looking amazed, then I said, but it’s not just a matter of words Bill, Jesus is going to do something for you today. I know Jesus is going to life you up and pull you out of that slimy pit. Then, you’ll be used by Jesus then to help others who’ve slipped into pits that they can’t get out of themselves.”

When we got to praying, we sang a song first and then, initially sitting, we all stood up and prayed the Lord’s prayer. Then the power began to come, Bill was shaking and saying, “WOW” He prayed and worshiped the Lord Jesus with us. He then said, “I’m coming tonight”. David thought he was talking about Tonight’s Meal, the Lord’s Last Supper, but no, Bill was talking about coming out on the streets with us to share Jesus and the power of the Kingdom. We left Bill to get something to eat and he promised to come to church at 7.00pm.

We left and then regathered at 7.00pm in the Church office last night. Soon after we arrived a man from South India came into the church, we didn’t want to stop our prayer and preparation for Evangelism, so we asked Cuthbert (think that’s his name) to join us. He came in, he was a Roman Catholic, so we got to sharing about Jesus and the Kingdom again. He didn’t want to come out on the streets so, we just prayed and it was strange, because we all hugged him and he left happy, even though we’d had some heated discussions about the doctrines of the Catholic church and Biblical Christianity. We prayed, praised and parted friends and encouraged him to check out what we had said by reading the Bible. He assured us that he would.

God's Kingdom Power
The Kingdom of Power

Rosa’s Encounter:

Last Night The Kingdom Came With Power.

Finally we got onto the streets, after chatting to a few people, David and Cherrie got chatting with a man for ages, and Bill teamed up with me and we shared and prayed for a few people. Then a young lady approached us, we shared the Gospel of Jesus with her and she admitted that she needed Jesus as her saviour, but had been thinking lately that Jesus can’t be real because so many bad things had happened in her life. Rosa had experienced the death of her father when she was a young girl, then last year a friend had be shot to death in Italy, and this year a friend had died in a car crash. She said, “How can there be a good God, a God of love when He allows such horrible things to happen to good people?” I said, “Rosa, I don’t know the answers to those questions, but what I do know is this, God sent Jesus His Son to die on the Cross for you, to take away all your sins, He did that because He loves you Rosa”

I continued, “Rosa, we’re not here tonight, just talking about Jesus and His Kingdom, we’ve come out and God’s going to touch your life.” I don’t know what prompted me to say that so boldly, but something inside me said, “Donald my power is coming tonight”. I said, “Rosa, I’m going to put my hand on your shoulder, if you don’t mind” She nodded. Then I said, “Rosa, God’s power of love is going to touch your heart tonight, you are going to know that God is real”. She laughed, I said, “I know it sounds weird, but it’s going to happen, God wants to show you how much he loves you.”. I asked Bill to put his hand on her other shoulder and I just touched her for a few seconds. I prayed, “Lord, thank you for Rosa, we know that you love her, please come and reveal your love in Rosa’s heart right now Lord”.

We took our hands off Rosa’s shoulders and I asked, “Rosa, what do you feel?”. She looked stunned for a few moments and couldn’t speak. Then she began to say, “WOW”, “WOW, what was that, my heart is literally thumping, my head’s all fuzzy, my legs have gone all shaky, I can feel some-thing’s happening in me, I feel so happy”. She began to cry and thanked us and was overjoyed. She shook my hand then let go immediately. She said, “Don’t touch me anymore, it’s too strong, oh WOW, what is that?” I said, “Rosa, it’s not me, it’s God’s love coming into your life” She said, “It’s real, I never thought this would happen, I’ll never forget this as long as I live”. After we chatted some more about what it means to be a follower of Jesus, Rosa gave us all a big hug and went away happy, she promised to read her Bible and turn to Jesus.

The Power of The Kingdom.

My friends as the LORD has said through Paul  1 Corinthians 4:20 “For the kingdom of God is not a matter of talk but of power.” It’s literally true. When Christians go out, even if they’re are a very young Christian like Bill was, just a few hours old as a Believer in Jesus, He’ll use us in His Kingdom power, to bring His power of love, of healing and of deliverance into the lives of others. He does this in faithfulness and in fulfilment of His promises. Signs and wonders will accompany the proclamation of the Gospel.  We saw it last night, I’m looking forward to going out today to take the Kingdom of God with me.

 If you are a follower of the Lord Jesus Christ, then you too can experience the Power of the Kingdom at work in and through you today.

You too can share Jesus in His power. We go out every week and we’d love to take some more with us, to learn how to share God’s Word in His Power. 1 Corinthians 4:20 “For the kingdom of God is not a matter of talk but of power.” You’ll see God at work in people’s lives. It’s not simply about getting people to come to your church or join your fellowship, but to get them into God’s Kingdom. Helping them to see that Jesus is real, alive and cares for them right now in their lives, no matter what they’re going through, God’s love can reach right in and touch them at their point of need. However, the LORD wants Disciples, Followers who obey His commands to GO. He didn’t say, “Come to faith in me and sit in a church or gathering of the saints in praise and worship and Bible study” No Jesus said, “Follow Me, and I will MAKE you fishers of men.”

He also said, “You shall do greater things” You can also be assured He’s with you for He promised that too. He also said in the Bible through Paul, 1 Corinthians 2:4-5 “My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power, 5  so that your faith might not rest on men’s wisdom, but on God’s power.” My friends, Rosa was touched, we did persuade her with the Gospel, but she also needed a demonstration of the Spirit’s Power in her life. When she got that, my friends, she was overjoyed, her faith came alive, she was touched by God and moved to praise the Living Lord Jesus Christ.

Yes, you may get some people who’ll come along and join your fellowship afterwards, but it’s better by far that they are saved by Jesus Christ and know Him and that they are in His Family forever. I know that once a person is soundly saved, they’ll want to come and worship the Lord. Nothing will keep them away. Amen!

You can have this same Kingdom Power at work in your life today my friends. Jesus wants to build His Kingdom. He told us to pray for that in the Lord’s Prayer: “Thy Kingdom Come, Thy will be done, on Earth as it is in Heaven” It’s happening today, well last night it did, and I’m certain that when we go out today, Jesus will be with us wherever we go, for we carry the Kingdom with us.

You have the SAME Holy Spirit in you as Paul, Peter, James and all the Apostles of the Lord Jesus. Followers of Jesus are the Temple, we’re all different and God will use our various gifts, but we’re ALL called to be followers of Jesus commands to go and take the Kingdom with us. You can do it at work, as you travel to work, at home, in the office, at school, college. Take God’s Kingdom and the POWER and demonstrate the power of the Kingdom.

Have an awesome Maundy thursday.

Come and join us tonight as we celebrate The Lord’s Last Supper. I’m sure we’re going to see God’s Kingdom Power at work in and through our lives and we go out on purpose to do what Jesus commanded.

Be filled with God’s Holy Spirit right now.

My prayer for everyone today is that God will use you, if you’ve trusted in Jesus as Lord and Saviour. Don’t be a pew warmer who only worships on a Sunday and just soaks up God’s teaching week by week, but be active in His Kingdom, because He wants followers, disciples and new people to come into His Kingdom.

 

Don.

The Kingdom of Power.

 

Sharpened and Polished For Kingdom Service

Daily Spirit & Word, 471: Sharpened and Polished for Kingdom Service?

Are You The Lord’s Sharpened Sword? and His Polished Arrow?

Good morning my friends, I don’t know if you’ve ever tried to cut ripe tomatoes with a blunt knife, they just don’t cut through the flesh and if you try and force it, you’ll end up with a squished mess of a tomato. I know, I’ve tried and it just makes a mess of a perfectly ripe tomato. No my friends to slice through fruit and vegetables, meat and poultry properly with a kitchen knife, you need to sharpen it in the right way. I learned this whilst working in various cafes and restaurants as a boy whilst still at school. Sometimes I’d have to prepare hundreds of tomatoes for the rush hour customers, but soon learned that before I began my knife needed to be ready and sharp as a razor.

Today, we’re going to see from God’s Word that the Lord wants to use you in His service of the Kingdom, but to be useful to him you’ll need to be razor-sharp and ready for the Master’s use.

 Sharpened Sword:

Isaiah 49:2  “He made my mouth like a sharpened sword, in the shadow of his hand he hid me; he made me into a polished arrow and concealed me in his quiver.”

In the Isaiah verse above we can see that it’s the LORD himself who does the preparing. “He made my mouth like a sharpened sword” Our words can be either flattering, smoothing or penetrating in the way that God intends. No self-respecting soldier would enter the battle field with a rusty, blunt or un-honed sword.

What comes out of a person’s mouth? Silly question? 🙂 Of course it is WORDS that come out, speech pours forth from our mouths. The words that come out from your mouth can be from different sources. Our Lord Jesus said this, John 12:47-50 47  “As for the person who hears my words but does not keep them, I do not judge him. For I did not come to judge the world, but to save it. 48  There is a judge for the one who rejects me and does not accept my words; that very word which I spoke will condemn him at the last day. 49  For I did not speak of my own accord, but the Father who sent me commanded me what to say and how to say it. 50  I know that his command leads to eternal life. So whatever I say is just what the Father has told me to say.”

Can you see it? Jesus only EVER spoke the Words His Father commanded Him to say. He didn’t speak on His own. Remember there are many verses that indicate that Jesus and the Father are united or one: He said to Philip, “If you’ve seen me, you’ve seen the Father” John 14:10, 11, 20. In many places in the Gospels it is recorded in similar ways, that Jesus only ever spoke what His Father wanted Him to speak.

Remember: The only offensive weapon for the Soldier in Christ is the Sword of the Spirit; the word of God (Ephesians 6:17). If the LORD is making you into His sharpened sword, then you’ll be useful to Him. He’ll give you the words to say in any given situation, but we must learn to trust Him, we’ll become like a sword in the LORD’S hands.

 Polished Arrow:

Secondly: “He made me into a polished arrow, and concealed me in His quiver”

What do arrows do? They fly and to fly straight they need to be ready for flight. A little bit of grit or rust on the tip can send an arrow far off course and miss the target. God wants your very words to Hit home to the target my friends, but it’s a target that He’s aiming at, not you. You must be prepared, hidden in the Lord’s quiver (Arrow Container), ready to be pulled out in His own good timing.

 Hidden Weapons:

Do you remember how the Iraq war began? It was because the West didn’t believe Saddam Hussein, when he declared “we have no weapons of mass destruction hidden away.” We sent teams of investigators into Iraq to try and find them, but none were ever found. Perhaps Saddam was telling the truth after all.

 But our LORD does conceal His Weapons:

Isaiah 49:2  “He made my mouth like a sharpened sword, in the shadow of his hand he hid me; he made me into a polished arrow and concealed me in his quiver.”

Just like the Sword; Hidden in His hand and the Arrow Concealed in His Quiver: The LORD has concealed His weapons of war, they are hidden from the enemies of the Lord.

Dear believer in the Lord Jesus Christ, you are the Lord’s secret, concealed and hidden weapon: Sharpened and Polished: Ready for use.

That’s what happens when you dedicate your life to the Lord Jesus Christ. After repenting from your sins and forsaking them, and then trusting in the Lord Jesus Christ and His death upon the cross for those sins, He fills you with the Holy Spirit and gives you a real HUNGER for His Word. You’ll begin to feast upon His Word and Hide His Word in your heart. So when it comes time to be used by the LORD He’ll pull out of you His Word at any given moment to be thrust deep into the foe or His arrow ready to fly straight to His intended target.

 God’s Weapons: They are not to destroy or win arguments, to to turn men’s hearts and win them for Christ.

 Blunt and Dirty Weapons:

A blunt sword and a dirty arrow are of no use to the LORD:

2 Timothy 2:19-22 “Nevertheless, God’s solid foundation stands firm, sealed with this inscription: “The Lord knows those who are his,” and, “Everyone who confesses the name of the Lord must turn away from wickedness.” 20  In a large house there are articles not only of gold and silver, but also of wood and clay; some are for noble purposes and some for ignoble. 21  If a man cleanses himself from the latter, he will be an instrument (Sword or Arrow) for noble purposes, made (Sharpened and Polished) holy, useful to the Master and prepared (Sharpened and Polished) to do any good work. 22  Flee the evil desires of youth, and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, along with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart.”

Just as Jesus only ever spoke the Father’s Words and we all know just how powerful the words of Jesus were, sometimes people were cut to the heart, stopped in their tracks and turned back in shame, so we too, become useful in the Master’s service: Sharpened Swords and Polished Arrows.

I’m praying for everyone reading this today, that you’ll be SHARPENED, POLISHED and READY for use in Jesus Kingdom today.

Don.

 Related Scriptures:

Every Believer in Jesus Christ is an Instrument prepared by God’s Spirit and concealed and ready for the Master’s use.

You’ll be like:

A  A SHARP THRESHING INSTRUMENT Isa. 41:15

B  A “VESSEL FIT FOR THE MASTER’S USE” 2 Tim. 2:21

C  A “SHARPENED SWORD AND POLISHED ARROW” Isaiah 49:2

D  A “FRUITFUL BRANCH” John 15:5

E  An “INVITATION LETTER” 2 Cor. 3:2

F  A “FAITHFUL WITNESS”  Acts 1:8 (NIV) “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”

G An “AMBASSADOR FOR CHRIST” 2 Corinthians 5:20 (NIV) “We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God.”

 More Scriptures About; THE WORD & JESUS & THE FATHER:

Matthew 26:39 Going a little farther, he fell with his face to the ground and prayed, “My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will.”

John 5:30 By myself I can do nothing; I judge only as I hear, and my judgment is just, for I seek not to please myself but him who sent me.
John 6:38 For I have come down from heaven not to do my will but to do the will of him who sent me.
John 8:28 So Jesus said, “When you have lifted up the Son of Man, then you will know that I am he and that I do nothing on my own but speak just what the Father has taught me.
John 12:49 For I did not speak on my own, but the Father who sent me commanded me to say all that I have spoken.
John 12:50 I know that his command leads to eternal life. So whatever I say is just what the Father has told me to say.”
John 14:10 Don’t you believe that I am in the Father, and that the Father is in me? The words I say to you I do not speak on my own authority. Rather, it is the Father, living in me, who is doing his work.

 Future Study Note: Jesus entrusted with future judgement:  John 5:22-23 22  Moreover, the Father judges no-one, but has entrusted all judgment to the Son, 23  that all may honour the Son just as they honour the Father. He who does not honour the Son does not honour the Father, who sent him.

Sharpened and Polished for Kingdom Service.

 

Proclaim The Year of the Lord’s Favour

Daily Spirit & Word, 470: PROCLAIM THE YEAR OF THE LORD’S FAVOUR.

The Jubilee Year: Proclaim The Year Of The Lord’s Favour.

Leviticus 25:10 “Consecrate the fiftieth year and proclaim liberty throughout the land to all its inhabitants. It shall be a jubilee for you; each one of you is to return to his family property and each to his own clan.”

I’m not certain if you are aware that 2015 is, according to the Jewish calendar, a JUBILEE year? What happened was a year of LIBERTY was to be proclaimed throughout the land of Israel. All debts were to be cancelled and any of the Jewish people held in bondage were to be set free and allowed to return to their own families.

Imagine that, what must it have been like? Can you imagine if our Governments today did this every 50th year?

You see in God’s thinking, he never wanted his chosen people to live under bondage to anything or anyone, and he doesn’t want it for anyone today either. Listen to the way God’s Word speaks about His desire to set people free from bondages of all kinds.

 The Day of Vengeance:

Isaiah 63:4 (NIV) “For the day of vengeance was in my heart, and the year of my redemption has come.” The LORD wants to pay back all the injustices of His chosen people. In His Holy Justice; He’s longing for the time when the day of vengeance will come and every evil person will get their just deserts, but in His mercy God doesn’t want to have to punish anyone. But it’s coming soon.

 The Resurrection Promise:

Isaiah 26:19 (NIV) “But your dead will live; their bodies will rise. You who dwell in the dust, wake up and shout for joy. Your dew is like the dew of the morning; the earth will give birth to her dead.”

Many Christians are not even aware of this, but the Old Testament prophesied about the Resurrection as in the verse above, a time when the dead will live again. The Bible tells us in the New Testament that when the Lord returns, the dead will arise and meet Him in the air. WOWzer! This give us even more confidence and a deep convinced conviction that the whole Bible is the WORD of God. We can believe ALL His promises. He’s even going to set people free from the prison of DEATH.

 Believers Will Meet The LORD First:

1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 (NIV) “For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. 17  After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord for ever.”

 How will Jesus come?

  • With a LOUD Command.
  • With the Voice of the Archangel.
  • With the Trumpet Call of God.

In days gone by, Christians who were hard pressed, for whom life was not easy, used to sing and praise the Lord with hymns that focused upon His return and their coming freedom. They looked forward with a great sence of JOY for the Lord’s return. Today, Christians are so in love with the world that they’d hate it if the Lord came back right now, it would be far to inconvenient for them, because they are enjoying the life they have here on earth soo much. They can’t see that life with Jesus is going to be even better than it is here on earth and that we should speed the day of His return. We can only do that by getting more people saved, because when the full number has come in, and we don’t know how many that is, the Lord will return. Let’s get busy filling up heaven with God’s precious, chosen souls.

 A Word of Caution on Freedom (Liberty).

Galatians 5:13 (NIV) “You, my brothers, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the sinful nature; rather, serve one another in love.”

So many Christians today are getting into things that they know deep down the LORD hates and detests. We’re so lax in our moral attitudes today, we’re all so into “GRACE” that we forget “HOLINESS of LIFE”. We’re meant to be a living witness that the LORD has transformed our lives… Many are aware of this, but are at a loss to know what to do about it. Seek His wisdom and He’ll gladly and freely give it to you. God wants you not only to know how to live, but He also wants to give you the POWER to be able to live. It’s available in abundance too, so turn quickly and stop using God’s GRACE as a lie to live by and indulge your sinful natures.

 Released from the POWER of the Grave:

Hosea 13:14 (NIV) “I will ransom them from the power of the grave; I will redeem them from death. Where, O death, are your plagues? Where, O grave, is your destruction? “I will have no compassion…”

WOWzer! God’s going to set people free from the POWER of the Grave. What’s that? Well DEATH is so powerful that millions are convinced that there is nothing after death. If God had not planted eternity into every human being’s heart, then I’m convinced there would be many more people who don’t believe in life after death. Praise be to the LORD for His great wisdom, planting eternity into everyone’s heart means; we know that his life is not the end. Once day God is going to break that POWER of the grave, oh yes, He’s done it already, “Jesus rose from the grave” He’s the first-fruits of those who will also be raised.

 The YEAR of the LORD’S FAVOUR:

God’s really, really into this business of setting you free my friends;

Jesus proclaimed and fulfilled Isaiah’s prophesy:

Isaiah 61:1-3  “The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is on me, because the LORD has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the broken-hearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, 2  to proclaim the year of the LORD’S favour and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn, 3  and provide for those who grieve in Zion— to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the LORD for the display of his splendour.”

Jesus Fulfilled the Prophesy Above:

Luke 4:14-21 ” Jesus returned to Galilee in the power of the Spirit, and news about him spread through the whole countryside. 15  He taught in their synagogues, and everyone praised him. 16  He went to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, and on the Sabbath day he went into the synagogue, as was his custom. And he stood up to read. 17  The scroll of the prophet Isaiah was handed to him. Unrolling it, he found the place where it is written: 18  “The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to release the oppressed, 19  to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favour.” 20  Then he rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant and sat down. The eyes of everyone in the synagogue were fastened on him, 21  and he began by saying to them, “Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.”

Again this creates in my heart an awesome WOWzer 🙂 Jesus was the YEAR of the LORD’S FAVOUR.

 Jesus is the YEAR OF THE LORD’S FAVOUR:

Today there are Believers who are filled with the Lord’s compassion for those who are in bondage, they too want to see people being set free;

Good News to the POOR: i.e. those who are in POVERTY of the Spirit. The man without the spirit is DEAD and Jesus wants to give them LIFE.

Freedom for the Prisoners: Those locked up in the PRISON of SIN, kept locked in by SATAN. Jesus died so that we might be released from SIN and set free from SATAN’S grip.

Those who are blind to their spiritual condition without Jesus, to have their eyes opened.

They are out Proclaiming THE YEAR OF THE LORD’S FAVOUR.

Are you filled with Jesus compassion? Are you alive with the hope of the Gospel, the Good News for the poor, the prisoner, the blind and those needing His favour?

Let’s get on our knees this morning and pray for the Lord’s forgiveness if we’re not filled with His love, compassion and grace for those who don’t know Him yet.

Let’s get out into the world and begin proclaiming loudly and freely with grace, humility and gentleness, that this is THE YEAR OF THE LORD’S FAVOUR. Amen!

Have a great Wednesday, in Jesus and in the POWER of the Spirit.

Live for THE YEAR OF THE LORD’S FAVOUR.

Don.

Today: We’ve got St Luke’s School coming to church for their end of term Easter Service. Pray for us please that the message will leap into young hearts.

Tonight: We’re going out into the streets of West Norwood and we’ll be PROCLAIMING THE YEAR OF THE LORD’S FAVOUR. Hopefully, like last week, leading people to faith and trust in Jesus Christ. (Please pray as we enter the Harvest Field).

Proclaim The Year Of The Lord’s Favour.

 

Believer: The LORD Is Your Protector

Daily Spirit & Word, 458: Believer: The LORD Is Your Protector.

It takes courage, unity and determination to defeat the enemies of the LORD.

Exodus 17:15 “Moses built an altar there and named it Yahweh-nissi (which means “the LORD is my banner”).”

Israel had been attacked by the Amalekites. It’s an amazing incident, for when Moses tired, his hands were supported by others. We need to remember that Moses by now was a very old man, but he was still God’s chosen man to lead the Nation of Israel from Slavery to Freedom in the promised land.

Joshua was the commander of the army of Israel: He was a faithful warrior for the Lord, but this battle plan had a strategy; Joshua would fight and Moses would stand.

 

Exodus 17:8-16

8  While the people of Israel were still at Rephidim, the warriors of Amalek attacked them.

9  Moses commanded Joshua, “Choose some men to go out and fight the army of Amalek for us. Tomorrow, I will stand at the top of the hill, holding the staff of God in my hand.”

10  So Joshua did what Moses had commanded and fought the army of Amalek. Meanwhile, Moses, Aaron, and Hur climbed to the top of a nearby hill.

11  As long as Moses held up the staff in his hand, the Israelites had the advantage. But whenever he dropped his hand, the Amalekites gained the advantage.

12  Moses’ arms soon became so tired he could no longer hold them up. So Aaron and Hur found a stone for him to sit on. Then they stood on each side of Moses, holding up his hands. So his hands held steady until sunset.

13  As a result, Joshua overwhelmed the army of Amalek in battle.

14  After the victory, the LORD instructed Moses, “Write this down on a scroll as a permanent reminder, and read it aloud to Joshua: I will erase the memory of Amalek from under heaven.”

15  Moses built an altar there and named it Yahweh-nissi (which means “the LORD is my banner”).

16  He said, “They have raised their fist against the LORD’s throne, so now the LORD will be at war with Amalek generation after generation.”

To Help Defeat The Enemy:

  • Joshua needed Moses
  • Moses needed Aaron and Hur
  • Israel needed the Lord

When they attacked Israel it wasn’t just Israel’s army they were attacking; He said, “They have raised their fist against the LORD’s throne, so now the LORD will be at war with Amalek generation after generation.” Verse 16.

My friends you, those of you who have been chosen by the Lord Jesus Christ, are members of God’s Holy, Heavenly Family forever, so whenever you are attacked from any source, they are attacking the “Throne of the LORD” Therefore, the LORD will be engaged in the battle with you. That’s why King David had such confidence in the LORD, because he knew that with the Lord no enemy need be feared.

Psalm 60:4 “But for those who fear you, you have raised a banner to be unfurled against the bow.”

Psalm 27:1-3 (NIV) [Of David.] “The LORD is my light and my salvation— whom shall I fear? The LORD is the stronghold of my life— of whom shall I be afraid? 2  When evil men advance against me to devour my flesh, when my enemies and my foes attack me, they will stumble and fall. 3  Though an army besiege me, my heart will not fear; though war break out against me, even then will I be confident.”

As believers we’ve also got the same kind of assurance that Moses, Joshua, Aaron, Hur and King David had; God is with you.

Revelation 17:14  “They will make war against the Lamb, but the Lamb will overcome them because he is Lord of lords and King of kings—and with him will be his called, chosen and faithful followers.” My friends, when you trusted in Jesus Christ and turned in repentance and faith to receive His forgiveness, did you realise that you were; “Called and Chosen?” WOWzer! Sometimes we think our walk with Jesus is all down to us, but He’s the one who called you, you simply responded. He’s the one who chose you. Out of all the people on the earth today, you were called and chosen by the Lord to be a member of His family forever, so He’s going to fight for you when you need His divine help.

Here is the Confidence we can have that Jesus is with us in every single battle that we face as Christians.

Romans 8:28-31 “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. 29  For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. 30  And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified. 31  What, then, shall we say in response to this? If God is for us, who can be against us?”

“If God is for us, who can be against us”

Oh WOW! “If God is for us (on our side) who can be against us?”

A NOTE of Caution: Our battle is NOT against flesh and blood (  ) but when we are attacked by other human beings the LORD will watch your back.

Be sure that you never attack one of the Lord’s chosen, anointed, justified and sanctified people, because if you do then He’ll become your most fearsome enemy.

For the Believer in the Lord Jesus Christ:

The Lord will help you in every battle, against every enemy.

My friends, I hope you have an AWESOME week, knowing that you’ve been called by Jesus, chosen by Jesus, justified by Jesus and that you are also protected by Jesus and the LORD’S Army. Fight valiantly dear warriors of Jesus.

Don.

 Bible References: Romans 8:31. Psalm 118:6. Psalm 60:4. Psalm 27:1,3. 2 Chronicles 13:12. Psalm 46:7. Revelation 17:14. Psalm 2:1,4. Isaiah 8:10.

Daily Spirit & Word.

If you like or have been helped by today’s devotions in Daily Spirit and Word, then why not share it with your friends on Facebook or Twitter or Google +? Spreading the Word. God bless and keep you today. Don.

 

The Three Crowns

Daily Spirit & Word, 466: The Three Crowns.

No it’s not the pub 🙂

Nor the united Kingdoms of England, Scotland and Wales.

But the Three Crowns of Glory for the Saints in Heaven: The Believers in the Lord Jesus Christ are going to be REWARDED.

Good morning my friends, it’s such a wonderful peaceful morning with fantastic colours in the sunrise. Peaceful, apart from a poorly grandchild crying in the background, but she’s being comforted by her mummy. It’s strange how we can have pain and beauty at the same time. Today I wanted to focus upon what we’ll be wearing in Heaven. Did you know that you are destined to be wearing a crown?

Our Youth Meeting last night was brilliant, we discussed thier values and priorities in life. After a few expected funny answers about what’s important, they eventually arrived at family, but didn’t quite see that God should be their first priority in life. Afterwards they began asking the youth leaders about what they did, if they were happy in their work and how much they earned. I tried to get across that we are all Princes and no matter how much we earn in life or what we do, as believers in Jesus we’re part of God’s ROYAL family. How do I know this? The Bible explains it in many different ways; we become heirs of the Kingdom, but there’s a beautiful description of our royal attire in the Bible that I’m sure your going to love today. Once you trust in Jesus you become Heavenly Royalty.

Believers in the Lord Jesus Christ will receive; Three Different Crowns:

A CROWN OF LIFE:

Revelation 2:10 (ANIV) “Do not be afraid of what you are about to suffer. I tell you, the devil will put some of you in prison to test you, and you will suffer persecution for ten days. Be faithful, even to the point of death, and I will give you the crown of life.”

We can definitely see an increase in EVIL on the earth today; with people being murdered on a massive scale at the hands of people who think they are serving a god. This is nothing new, but was predicted thousands of years ago, but it is also a sign that the Lord is coming soon, because mankind will become even more lawless just before the LORD returns.

The LORD is promising through the book of Revelation, that when we faithfully endure hardship, even to the point of death, we’re going to be receiving an awesome CROWN, the CROWN OF LIFE. Nothing can take your joyful hope away from you, no matter what they do to you, your CROWN is waiting for you in Heaven. Be at PEACE no matter what.

A CROWN OF REJOICING:

1 Thessalonians 2:19 (ANIV) “For what is our hope, our joy, or the crown in which we will glory in the presence of our Lord Jesus when he comes? Is it not you?”

What an amazing statement, the thing that’s going to bring us honour in heaven, one that will make us rejoice for all eternity, is the souls that get saved from God’s wrath and hell, the ones that we’ve managed to bring into a relationship with the King, those we’ve introduced to Jesus Christ who get saved. WOWzer! Remember how the angels rejoice over just one sinner who repents? Well we too are going to be experiencing that same hope, joy and crown; from the people who’ve been saved because of our faithful; witness, testimony, live and love for the Lord and the saints.

A CROWN OF GLORY:

1 Peter 5:4 (ANIV) “And when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory that will never fade away.”

That reminds me of Moses, when he was with the Lord on the Holy Mountain, he shone with the glory of the Lord, but it faded away after a time. The glory we’ll get will never fade away. We’ll be shining with the LORD’S Glory of all eternity. 

The LORD’S Crown Jewels:

As a boy I visited Edinburgh Castle and was privileged to see the Crown Jewels of Scotland, I’ll never forget how awesome and so impressive they were. Royalty in the UK is something we take for granted, but people today have lost a sense of how special royalty really is. Years ago you could loose your life if you even looked upon a royal in the wrong way. In the presence of royalty, there was a sense of; power, fear, rule and sometimes benevolent justice. Can you imagine what it’s going to be like to see the King of Kings Royalty? His Crown is a crown of pain and beauty: Thorns that once pierced his head are now His glory for all the souls that have been saved by His precious blood. We may save a few people from Hell and receive some glory and a crown that will never fade away, but Imagine how glorious His CROWN will be.

It’s amazing to think how much the Lord wants us to be in His glory, how close He wants believers to be to Him, even to sit upon His throne with Him and share His glory. This GLORY and the Three Crowns: Crown of Life, Crown of Rejoicing, Crown of Glory give us the incentive we need when things get really tough down here on earth.

Just as a Crown denotes authority and royalty: Jesus Christ wore a crown of thorns, so that we might wear these Three Heavenly Crowns. If you’ve trusted in Jesus then you are a Prince or a Princess of the Heavenly Kingdom. Walk with your head up today 🙂

Have an awesome Saturday and look forward to the GLORY.

Don.

 

The Highest Bidder Wins

Daily Spirit & Word, 464: The Highest Bidder Wins.

The Highest Bidder Wins.

Or the things that screams the loudest in our lives often take priority.

Good morning my friends, we had a wonderful evening of Evangelism on the Streets of West Norwood last night. The weather is warming up in the evenings now, so we were quite surprised by the number of people who were prepared to stop and have a chat about; Jesus, faith, the real meaning of Easter etc… The little Easter tract was a real winner too, so my thanks go to a lady from Chatsworth Baptist Church who pointed them out and to Amanda our Church Administrator who printed the labels with Church details. It was really good, because so many people took one as they rushed out of the Station on their way home from work. These little tracts were a great Springboard into Gospel conversations. I think a good springboard is something that enables you to get into ‘spiritual’ conversations quickly.

Once I got back home I began to think about the conversations and it seems to me that people have lots of things in life that are priorities for them, but they are not living according to the list of things they actually value or see as important to them. Quite often the one with the loudest voice is like the highest bidder at an auction, screaming out for our attention and focus.

For instance, the following list are things that might possibly be important to you, what I would like you to do today is put a number from 1-10 in their order of priority for you. One being highest and 10 being the lowest.

  • ___ happy family ____________________
  • ___ successful career ______________________
  • ___ fame/popularity ______________________
  • ___ wealth _____________________________
  • ___ sex _________________________
  • ___ strong relationship with God __________________
  • ___ fun/pleasure/good feelings _____________________
  • ___ good looks ________________________
  • ___ athletic skill ________________________
  • ___ solid marriage _______________________

Having listed them in order of priority for you, now I want you to think of your reasons why? Do it quickly without analysing it too much.

Now, how did you feel as you were asking yourself, “Which of these is the highest priority in my life?”

and “Did what I think should be a high priority turn out to be something I spend a lot of time on during a typical week?”

Most often we find that people value their families and God as highest in their ranking or priority, followed by career or job, but very often they spend little time during the week maintaining these first two critically important aspects of their lives.

Don’t feel crushed if that’s you today, because you are not alone. You see my friends, what is important in our lives reveals our heart’s desires, but what we do about it and how we prioritise our working / living week is something only we and the Lord will be able to sort out. Remember where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

  • Matthew 6:20-21 (ANIV) 20 But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

 Today’s Verses From God’s Word:

John 9:4-5 “As long as it is day, we must do the work of him who sent me. Night is coming, when no-one can work. 5 While I am in the world, I am the light of the world.”

As long as it is day, we must do the work of our Father in Heaven. Remember, Jesus said, “YOU are the Light of the Word”… We can’t keep hiding our light, we must shine brightly for Jesus and let others see His glory through our lives.

I love the little letter of James, he’s just so straightforward and forthright. James 4:13-17 “Now listen, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.” 14  Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. 15  Instead, you ought to say, “If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that.” 16  As it is, you boast and brag. All such boasting is evil. 17  Anyone, then, who knows the good he ought to do and doesn’t do it, sins.”

If you’ve got time then please also read; The Parable of The Talents; Matthew 25:14-30 (Printed at the end of today’s message)..

It seems to me that we’re all very busy doing things that aren’t even high on our list of priorities in life, we’re overwhelmed with pressures of work and finance, therefore family and God get pushed much further down the list of things to do on a daily and weekly basis. We long to be better husbands and wives, and worshippers of the Lord, but because we fail to prioritise these things in the order they should be we live with a constant feeling of guilt and often shame a well.

It’s TIME to be set-free from these traps my friends. God wants to be FIRST in your life, when we do put him first it’s amazing just how much time we’ll then find for everything else that’s really important to us. Below I’ve listed some really good books to help us find priorities in life, I’m sure you’ve probably got some more that you’ve read, please share them with everyone in the comments section below.

God bless and have an awesome Thursday with Jesus, but Don’t let the one who shouts the loudest rule your life. As a believer in the Lord Jesus we must listen out for the voice of the Holy Spirit and He’ll guide you and show you what should be highest priority for you and Him today.

Be at PEACE!

Don.

P.S. I’m sorry this is late today, I’ve had to spend time with my daughter and her children having breakfast. It was fantastic, she’d cooked sausages, bacon, eggs, tomatoes and beans, toast etc… Yummmmy. The Children were great fun to be with and eating around the table together is always great. Aminata read me a story from her school-book before she got ready for school. Family really does come a very close second to time with Jesus. God bless my friends. Don.

 Good Books and Helps:

Here is a list of good books that will help you to Prioritise your life after God’s patterns for righteous living.

  •  How Now Should We Live?: by Chuck Colson (Tyndale House Publishers). This insightful analysis of culture challenges Christians to live their faith in a hostile environment.
  • Meeting the Jesus Challenge, Real Life… Real Questions… Real Jesus: by Len Woods (Standard Publishing). This book, the third in a series of four devotionals tied to The Jesus Bible (Tyndale Publishing House), it helps people rise to the Jesus challenge. You’ll be challenged to watch Jesus in action, to listen to his teachings, and then to obey what Jesus tells you to do. The third section takes a close look at priorities and values, answering the question, “How does life change when we view it from Jesus’ perspective?” The challenge here is for people to seek first Christ and his kingdom.
  • Ordering Your Private World: by Gordon McDonald (Thomas Nelson Publishers). McDonald teaches that time and talents are gifts to be carefully invested and he provides biblical principles to help care for the inner self.
  • Seven Habits of Highly Effective People: by Stephen Covey (Simon & Schuster). This business world classic and top ten seller for over a decade takes people from dependence to independence and finally to interdependence in relationships. It provides helpful counsel on choosing priorities and sticking with them.
  • Who Switched the Price Tags?: by Tony Campolo (Word Publishing). Campolo challenges readers to risk more, reflect more, and do things of lasting value. To get the most out of life, we must put first things first.

Also I love Rob Parsons and his books on family life and getting it right from a Christian perspective: His Website: Care For The Family: http://www.careforthefamily.org.uk/

The Parable of The Talents: Matthew 25:14-30 (NIV)

  • Matthew 25:14-30 (ANIV)
    14 “Again, it will be like a man going on a journey, who called his servants and entrusted his property to them.
    15 To one he gave five talents of money, to another two talents, and to another one talent, each according to his ability. Then he went on his journey.
    16  The man who had received the five talents went at once and put his money to work and gained five more.
    17  So also, the one with the two talents gained two more.
    18  But the man who had received the one talent went off, dug a hole in the ground and hid his master’s money.
    19  “After a long time the master of those servants returned and settled accounts with them.
    20  The man who had received the five talents brought the other five. ‘Master,’ he said, ‘you entrusted me with five talents. See, I have gained five more.’
    21  “His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!’
    22  “The man with the two talents also came. ‘Master,’ he said, ‘you entrusted me with two talents; see, I have gained two more.’
    23  “His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!’
    24  “Then the man who had received the one talent came. ‘Master,’ he said, ‘I knew that you are a hard man, harvesting where you have not sown and gathering where you have not scattered seed.
    25  So I was afraid and went out and hid your talent in the ground. See, here is what belongs to you.’
    26  “His master replied, ‘You wicked, lazy servant! So you knew that I harvest where I have not sown and gather where I have not scattered seed?
    27  Well then, you should have put my money on deposit with the bankers, so that when I returned I would have received it back with interest.
    28  ” ‘Take the talent from him and give it to the one who has the ten talents.
    29  For everyone who has will be given more, and he will have an abundance. Whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken from him.
    30  And throw that worthless servant outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’

 

Kingdom Greatness

Daily Spirit & Word, 463: Kingdom Greatness.

©Daily Spirit & Word. © www.spiritandword.co.uk

Good morning my friends, it’s Wednesday and we’re going to focus today upon being great in God’s Kingdom. I love that old song, “If you want to be great in God’s Kingdom, learn to be the servant of all”

We all want to be significant in the eyes of others and competition for recognition is nothing new, even amongst the followers of Jesus Christ, there were those who, before they were born of the Spirit, didn’t quite grasp the true nature of the Kingdom of God. It’s almost amusing that Jesus confounds the wisdom of this world by turning what it values most upon it’s head and saying this is now much better.

It’s like a fashion expert telling us that white is the new black 🙂 Or red is the new green.

Jesus said, that to be GREAT in God’s Kingdom, you must become the servant of ALL (of everyone).

 Worldly Greatness:

Normally, when you think of great people, you think how they are served by a host of servants; they’ll be driven places by a Chauffeur, they’ll be welcomed into their home by a Butler or House Manager. They’ll have a bath run for them by a personal servant, they’ll even have their back scrubbed by another servant. The cook will prepare meals for them, the gardener will look after flowers and the grounds. Personal assistants will ensure you never need to go into shops again. Wherever you go people bow down before you and sometimes tremble in your presence, because of your majestic greatness.

Now imagine, being with Jesus and recognising His GREATNESS, then asking if you can be one of His special people, his right-hand-man. Well that’s what the mother of two of Jesus Disciple wanted for her sons. It’s obvious they wanted it too as you’ll see from the passage below;

Matthew 20:20-28 Then the mother of Zebedee’s sons came to Jesus with her sons and, kneeling down, asked a favour of him. 21  “What is it you want?” he asked. She said, “Grant that one of these two sons of mine may sit at your right and the other at your left in your kingdom.” 22  “You don’t know what you are asking,” Jesus said to them. “Can you drink the cup I am going to drink?” “We can,” they answered. 23  Jesus said to them, “You will indeed drink from my cup, but to sit at my right or left is not for me to grant. These places belong to those for whom they have been prepared by my Father.” 24  When the ten heard about this, they were indignant with the two brothers. 25  Jesus called them together and said, “You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. 26  Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, 27  and whoever wants to be first must be your slave— 28  just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”

Here we see three people seeking greatness in the eyes of others: A mother and her two sons. They wanted to be viewed and thought about as SPECIAL, Important, Selected, Preferred, best-loved, chosen, favoured, favourite, preferable, preferential. Over and above their already privileged calling as Jesus’ Apostles.

 Who were these sons of Zebedee?

This account is repeated almost word for word in Mark’s Gospel, but in his account we’re told expressly who the sons of Zebedee are; James and John. Mark 10:35-45.

What do we know of James and John? They did indeed become great in God’s Kingdom, but they also became two of the most blessed servants the church has ever known. Their greatness didn’t come about by LORDING it over people, but serving the brothers and sisters; James in Jerusalem and John gave us awesome teaching in his Gospel and the 1, 2 and 3 John and the book of Revelation.

John became known as the beloved Disciple, he was the closest friend of Jesus whilst Jesus was on the earth. He took to heart what Jesus said, and this gentle rebuke of the Saviour took hold in his life.

Before James and John, the sons of Zebedee came to Jesus, with their mother as Matthew records, Jesus had already explained that Kingdom Greatness comes from service towards others; Mark 9:33-35 They came to Capernaum. When he was in the house, he asked them, “What were you arguing about on the road?” 34  But they kept quiet because on the way they had argued about who was the greatest. 35  Sitting down, Jesus called the Twelve and said, “If anyone wants to be first, he must be the very last, and the servant of all.”

So my friends, it’s true in every sphere of life: At work, in the home and in your community. If you want to be GREAT then we must learn to become the SERVANTS of everyone. No matter who they are.

St Paul’s Service in God’s Kingdom:

  • Acts 20:25-31 25 “Now I know that none of you among whom I have gone about preaching the kingdom will ever see me again.
    26 Therefore, I declare to you today that I am innocent of the blood of all men.
    27  For I have not hesitated to proclaim to you the whole will of God.
    28  Keep watch over yourselves and all the flock of which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers. Be shepherds of the church of God, which he bought with his own blood.
    29  I know that after I leave, savage wolves will come in among you and will not spare the flock.
    30  Even from your own number men will arise and distort the truth in order to draw away disciples after them.
    31  So be on your guard! Remember that for three years I never stopped warning each of you night and day with tears.

You know, without first coming to Jesus Christ and submitting to His Kingship or Lordship, you’ll never be a servant in His Kingdom. I’ve seen people try and they always end up bitter about others, they’ll try and serve in humility, but without Christ in our hearts we’ll become frustrated, tired and bitter towards others who don’t appreciate what we’re doing for them. We’ll get exhaused and begin to moan about others. My friends, when you are serving Christ, you’ll never get tired of His Kingdom Service, because you know deep down you are not doing it for recognition or greatness, you are serving others out of appreciation for all that Christ has done for you. He’ll fill your heart with His love for people and you’ll just serve, no matter what the response is from others, you’ll keep serving, because you are not trying to win their approval or respect or praise, you’re serving a much higher and more noble calling; You are serving God’s Kingdom.

You’ll serve wherever you are:

  • At HOME: You’ll be the best husband, the most loving, patient, kind and gentle man.
  • At HOME: You’ll be a wife who loves to serve and take care of her family, not counting the cost, because you are serving Jesus.
  •  At WORK: You’ll be the best employee the company has ever had. You’ll try your best, you’ll serve your collegaues rather than climb over them. You’ll make certain that your boss never fails. All because you are not serving the company or for reward, but you are serving Jesus Christ.
  •  In the COMMUNITY: Your neighbours will know they can come to you and ask for help. You’ll be there for everyone and you’ll help them whenever you can. You’ll be generous with your time, your talents and your money for your neighbours. All because you are serving the Kingdom and the King of Kings.  
  • In the WORLD: You’ll look for ways to help people, make peace, fight for justice, promote fairness and look after those who cannot look after themselves. You’ll never look down on anyone and you’ll think of others as better than you.

We’ll do all of this willingly and full of joy and praise and peace, because we’ve learned what it means to be the Servant of All: We’ve become more like Jesus Christ and we’re full of the Holy Spirit and love.

My friends, How is your Kingdom Service?

“If anyone wants to be first, he must be the very last, and the servant of all.”

If you need a heart to serve better today, then can I encourage you to come to the King of Kings, the Lord Jesus Christ and learn from Him, for He is gentle and kind and will show you what it means to serve and not count the cost.

Have a blessed day in the Service of the Kingdom. Glorify Jesus with the way you live as a servant of all.

Don.

Kingdom Greatness.