The Free Gift

Cost Jesus Everything to give us the FREE gift of LIFE

Daily Spirit & Word: 770: Jesus Invitation Is Free.

See The Kingdom Of God… The FREE GIFT…

Luke 9:20-27 (NIV)
20  “But what about you?” he asked. “Who do you say I am?” Peter answered, “The Christ of God.”
21  Jesus strictly warned them not to tell this to anyone.
22  And he said, “The Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders, chief priests and teachers of the law, and he must be killed and on the third day be raised to life.”
23  Then he said to them all: “If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.
24  For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me will save it.
25  What good is it for a man to gain the whole world, and yet lose or forfeit his very self?
26  If anyone is ashamed of me and my words, the Son of Man will be ashamed of him when he comes in his glory and in the glory of the Father and of the holy angels.
27  I tell you the truth, some who are standing here will not taste death before they see the kingdom of God.”

A banker or investor will take risks, but they’ll only take a calculated risk. God will invest in you in accordance with the faith you are ready to use.

The Kindness Of God: The Free Gift Of Salvation.

A Sunday School Teacher wanted to show his class how free the gift of Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ is.

So he felt prompted to give someone his solid silver watch; given to him in his retirement. He took it from his pocket and offered it to the eldest boy in the class.

He said, “It is yours, if you will take it.”

The little boy sat and grinned at the teacher. He thought he was just joking.

So the teacher offered it to the next boy, and said, “Take my watch: it is yours.”

The little boy thought everyone in the class would laugh at him, if he held out his hand, so he shook his head.

In the same way the teacher went around almost the whole class; but not one of them would accept the free gift of the silver watch.

However, when he came to one boy and held out the watch, he grabbed it immediately and shoved it into his pocket with a smile on his face.

Suddenly the class erupted in laughter, but the teach stopped them and said to the boy who took it, “You can keep my watch” He returned to his teaching seat, the whole class were amazed.

He said to the class: “I am so thankful that just one boy in my Sunday School Class has believed me and now owns my watch. Boys to you believe me when I tell you that Jesus will save you, He will come into your life and give you new life when you believe in Him, turn from sin and receive Him as Lord?”

When you trust in Jesus, just like the watch, which must be wound up every day, so you must take care of your own Salvation by coming back to Jesus every day to be refilled with Holy Spirit.

Son he said, “Take good care of your new silver watch. Wind it up every day, but not too much or you’ll break the spring.”

The rest of the class looked on in amazement; and one of them said, “Teacher, you don’t mean that the watch is his? You don’t mean that he doesn’t have to give it back to you?”

The Teacher said, “It is his watch now, he doesn’t need to give it back to me.”

The boy said, “WOW, it really is free”… “Oh, if I had only known that, I would have taken it too!”

The Sunday School Teacher said, “There was only one silver watch, but Jesus offer of Salvation is free for everyone, will you take that offer of new life with Him?”

 

 

I had a picture of deep, rich soil and God investing in that soil, He’s expecting a return on His investment. (The Parable of the Sower).

The seed that falls on the other three soil types; they are a bit like Venture Capital. Risky, but sometimes those risky investments pay BIG dividends for those willing to take a risk.

God takes a RISK when He offers Salvation Freely to ALL.

When seed falls on rocky ground, it grows up and looks good for a short while, but watch out, when the sun comes up and scorches the plant, it’s going to wither and die, because it has no root, it’s roots don’t go down into deep rich soil and it can’t get the moisture that it needs to survive. (Too often Ministers are trying to prop-up shallow soil hearers, rocky ground hearers and hard-soil (path) hearers, they get exhausted and worn out doing this, but they should instead be tending, supporting and investing their time and energy in those who’ve been receptive to the Word of God, and are producing a good crop.

My friends, keep winding-up your faith, it’s FREE: You didn’t earn it, God gave it to you for free, it’s yours to keep forever, but look after it.

  • Jesus said, “If any man follows me, He must obey my commandments”
  • Jesus said, “If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.”

It is a DAILY walk with Jesus. We’re not to be Sunday Christians, but DAILY followers of the LORD Jesus Christ. It’s a costly walk, it begins and ends with the offer of Salvation, Free to us, but costly to Jesus. Then we prove we are His followers when we begin to walk in His teachings daily.

Prayer:

I’ve been praying far more for people lately. The LORD was guiding me and I’m now taking RISKS in Prayer. When someone says something NEGATIVE, I’ll listen, then chat around the complaint, then say; “Let’s pray about that right now”… I’m going to be taking everything to Jesus. When someone tells me they are hurting or feeling ill or tired or weary or upset; then I’ll say, “Let’s pray about that right now and get God on your case” …

Evangelism:

I’ve learned from Ying Kai: He said, “I’m not going to ask permission to share the Good News, because I’ve already been given all the permission I need, God has told me to go out and share the Good News, for too long we’ve been suckered by the politically correct world, asking people permission to share Jesus, we don’t need that permission, because God has given it to us.”

Also, people don’t want to know, they’re happy with their life of sin, so if you ask permission you are going to get a lot of rejections. If you don’t ask for permission, then you can preach the Gospel to many more people. You’ll be able to get the seed of hope into their hearts.

Last night, outside Knowles of Norwood:

A new pub in West Norwood with tables outside, there were three ladies sitting enjoying a drink in the Summer warmth. I gave them an invitation to our “Oh Happy Day Festival”. They seemed interested, so I gave them a Ticket to Heaven… I said, “Here’s a FREE Ticket, it will get you into Heaven”… They all laughed, I asked them, “Are you going to Heaven?” Someone said, “I don’t believe in Heaven, but another said, “I believe God will let everyone in because Jesus died on the Cross so we could all get in”… “WOWzer” I said, “That’s amazing, do you really believe that?” She said, “No, but If it’s true then we’ve got nothing to worry about”…

I said, “There’s a little test we’ve got that will show you if you’ll get in”   I gave them a Ten Commandment Coin, they all took it and were looking at the commandments. I said, “Those Commandments are like a mirror, they show us what we are like on the inside, and they are the measure God will use to detect our goodness to qualify for Heaven.”

“Do you think you’ll be good enough to enter into Heaven?” Well, to cut a long story short, we went through the Commandments and they all admitted they were liars and thieves… They said, “It’s getting a bit serious, but thanks for telling us.” I said, “Wait, before I go, let me tell you the GOOD NEWS, do you know what God has done so that you won’t go to Hell?” “He sent his Son Jesus Christ to die, as you have said, but it’s not automatic, we’re not all just saved, we’ve got to believe in Him and turn from our sins, seeking His forgiveness, then receive Him as our Lord in this life, before we die.”

I asked them, “Does that make sense to you ladies?”, they said, “Yes it does, thanks so much” I gave them all a card with a dog with big ears (they giggled and thought the dog was cute) and thanked them for listening. They laughed when another member of our team came along and offered them another card…

My friends, Evangelism is FUN if you will just take the risk and share Jesus with folks. They’ll thank you when they see you in Heaven.

From now on I’m going to be sharing Jesus without asking permission. However, there is a balance to this: We should always be gentle and humble in our approach. We should show respect and let people go if they want to end the conversation. It’s just we’ve been a bit too polite for too long, Jesus gave us permission to share, let’s get bolder and share a bit more.

With respect:

Evangelism FEARS:

  • FEAR: Not knowing what to say,
  • FEAR: Not knowing enough,
  • FEAR: Not getting a good reception or being rejected,
  • FEAR: Not getting the response you’d hoped for,

 

It’s not what you know but who you know that you are sharing. You are not sharing KNOWLEDGE but JESUS… Knowledge puffs up,

It’s not the amount that you know, but the greatness of the one whom you have trusted that you must share; Jesus is LORD.

Last night we had a few people on our team who’ve only been Christians a very short while. It was good, because we met a man who’d just come out of prison, who was a new convert to Jesus, but was struggling with smoking and pornography in his life. We were able to share with him, encourage him and pray with him. He was so open and honest and ready to turn to Jesus Christ. As we prayed for him, he began to cry. It’s good to share Jesus!

It’s not about how the message is received, that’s not up to you, your task is to share with EVERYONE. It is NOT dependent upon how it is received. In fact we should share it with those who don’t want to know, because you never know, that SEED that you sow into the soil of their heart may lie dormant for a few years, but after a while, they will be brought back to the that point and remember what you said to them…

Sinners will not come into the LIGHT on their own, they HATE the light, because they know their DEEDS are EVIL… John 3:17-24…

My friends, those sinners are; trapped, bound, blind, deaf and frightened… Have pity on them, and bring the LIGHT of Jesus Christ into their lives by going with Jesus to share the Good News that they can be set free from sin and darkness.

Thought: “Well done, good and faithful servant, but you are only doing what’s right, you don’t deserve praise for doing what you should be doing anyway, but you will be allowed to continue to serve the master even more, because you have proven to be worthy, He will continue to invest in you”

Chicken Feed:

I know today’s teaching is a bit like Chicken Feed: Too many disjointed thoughts, stories and sayings of Jesus. I did it on purpose my friends. Read it again and you’ll see, there’s method in my madness. LOL.

If you’ve ever watched chickens eating, some will eat one kind of grain and leave the others, then another chicken will come and eat the grains left by the others. You take the bit of today’s teaching that applies to your life and let God give you nourishment from it. Amen!

Finally:

Jesus loves you, has a plan for your life, go and share Jesus. He gave you the gift of eternal life freely, so you must give it away freely too. It’s like a precious silver retirement watch, but there is NO retirement in the Kingdom of God, we don’t let the watch wind-down, we keep it wound-up every day and let it tell the time: “Now is the day of Salvation, Now is the day of Repentance, we get one life then we face the judgement. Turn and Believe in Jesus Christ, He’ll give you the gift of life freely”.

  • Jesus offer of LIFE is FREE: But it cost Him His LIFE to give it to us.
  • Jesus offer of LIFE is FREE: But He tells us to take up our Cross Daily and Follow Him…
  • Jesus offer of LIFE is FREE: But He Commands us to Go and share it with others… Share the Good News of Jesus.

Use the FREE GIFT of LIFE Jesus has given to you.

Have an AWESOME Thursday.

Don.

 

The Kiss Of Death

Jesus Betrayal by Judas

Daily Spirit & Word, 476: The Kiss of Death.

Judas Iscariot: The Ultimate Baddie of the Bible: Gives The Kiss of Death to Jesus.

Good morning my friends, it’s Wednesday and we’re in Holy Week, so I thought I’d take a look at one of those people the Lord Jesus chose as one of His disciples, knowing that He’d betray Him: Judas Iscariot.

 Judas Iscariot & The Kiss of Death:

Judas Iscariot was, according to the New Testament, one of the twelve original disciples of Jesus Christ, and son of Simon Iscariot. He is known for the kiss and betrayal of Jesus to the Sanhedrin for thirty silver coins. Even today, people who know little about the Bible will use the name ‘Judas’ to accuse someone of betrayal. Though there are varied accounts of his death, the traditional version sees him as having hanged himself following the betrayal. His place among the Twelve Apostles was later filled by Matthias, who had been with Jesus from the time that Jesus was baptised by John in the River Jordan.

We all know or sometimes we think we know all about a person, but a lot of what we know about Judas today has little to do with Biblical reality, history or accuracy. He’s been portrayed as both the ultimate baddie and the lad who just didn’t quite make it, but was OK in the end, because he felt remorse for his betrayal of the Lord Jesus.

Who was Judas? He was one of the original 12 Disciples designated Apostles of the Lord Jesus Christ. He was the son of Simon Iscariot.

 Judas Was The Lord’s Treasurer:

He kept the money bag for the Lord’s work. He was the one who collected money and paid for Jesus ministry, food and lodgings etc…  John 12:6. However, when we look at that passage in context we get an indication of the kind of character that Jesus was; A Treasurer is a Trusted Position.

John 12:4-6 “But one of his disciples, Judas Iscariot, who was later to betray him, objected,
5  “Why wasn’t this perfume sold and the money given to the poor? It was worth a year’s wages.”
6  He did not say this because he cared about the poor but because he was a thief; as keeper of the money bag, he used to help himself to what was put into it.”

WOWzer! One of the Lord’s chosen was a THIEF as well as a betrayer. Imagine that, Judas is travelling around with the Messiah, he’s daily seeing people healed, delivered and brought back to life. He’s listening to all of Jesus’ teachings and yet in his heart he was far away from the Lord. The love of money had gripped his heart.

Satan Entered Judas:

Luke 22:3 (NIV) “Then Satan entered Judas, called Iscariot, one of the Twelve.”

My friends, Satan cannot get into you, unless you let him in.  Ephesians 4:27 (NIV) “and do not give the devil a foothold.” It’s like opening the door of your heart without first looking through the spy-hole to see who’s at the door, once we crack open the door we’re giving him a foothold into our life.

 

He comes when we are disobedient or rebellious to the Lord in some way. That’s what happened to Judas and it should serve as a warning to us all. Judas had already decided in his heart that he’d betray Jesus for money, long before Satan entered into him, it’s that decision and desire to betray, to plot evil, to plan murder, that allowed or enabled Satan to gain entry.

We allow Satan entry when we think, plan and plot with evil intent, not matter what the temptation is, and they can be strong at times, we must be aware of what’s at stake.

When did the other disciples catch-on that Judas was the betrayer?

It wasn’t until Jesus was kissed by Judas and arrested, but Jesus knew who he was and when he’d do it, before it happened and before Judas even thought about betraying Him. Imagine Jesus, when he was choosing the 12 originally, knowing that one of them was going to betray Him?

Judas’ Betrayal Predicted in the Bible.

We must realise that Judas’ betrayal of the Lord was predicted hundreds of years before he was born. This fact doesn’t take away Judas’ guilt or personal responsibility, because even though we’re all tempted by Satan, we’re going to be held accountable for the decisions we make, therefore Judas’ responsibility and guilt remains.

Acts 1:15-20 “During this time, when about 120 believers were together in one place, Peter stood up and addressed them.
16  “Brothers,” he said, “the Scriptures had to be fulfilled concerning Judas, who guided those who arrested Jesus. This was predicted long ago by the Holy Spirit, speaking through King David.
17  Judas was one of us and shared in the ministry with us.”
18  (Judas had bought a field with the money he received for his treachery. Falling headfirst there, his body split open, spilling out all his intestines.
19  The news of his death spread to all the people of Jerusalem, and they gave the place the Aramaic name Akeldama, which means “Field of Blood.”)
20  Peter continued, “This was written in the book of Psalms, where it says, ‘Let his home become desolate, with no one living in it.’ It also says, ‘Let someone else take his position.’”

The Psalms Peter is talking about (Confirmed by Paul) were Psalm 69:25 and 109:8. You’ll note from these Psalms that Judas is not mentioned by name, but the fact that he’d betray the Lord. Judas fulfilled Old Testament prophesy. But there are other Psalms that predict it more specifically; Psalm 41:9 (NIV) “Even my close friend, whom I trusted, he who shared my bread, has lifted up his heel against me.”

How Much Would It Take to Betray the LORD?

For Judas it was 30 pieces of silver:

Matthew 26:14-16 “Then one of the Twelve—the one called Judas Iscariot—went to the chief priests and asked, “What are you willing to give me if I hand him over to you?” So they counted out for him thirty silver coins. From then on Judas watched for an opportunity to hand him over.”

Just 30 Pieces of Silver: The life of Jesus for money. He’d been with Jesus for a long time and knew what Jesus was like, what possessed him to think that any amount of money was worth betraying the most gentle, loving, kind human being to ever walk the planet?

We can all be like Judas though, because whenever we choose to act, to speak or even think about evil sinful things, we’re choosing the pleasures of sin over and above our devotion and love for the Lord. 30 Pieces of Silver probably was a lot of money in those days, perhaps Judas thought he’d become rich, but the pleasures of sin are momentary, fleeting, like a mist, they don’t last and as we observe Judas bitterly regretted his betrayal of the Lord and took his own life in the end.

Proverbs 13:11 11  Dishonest money dwindles away, but he who gathers money little by little makes it grow.

You know my friends, the bible tells us that SIN leads to death: When SINFUL DESIRE is full grown: James 1:13-18 “When tempted, no-one should say, “God is tempting me.” For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone; 14  but each one is tempted when, by his own evil desire, he is dragged away and enticed. 15  Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death. 16  Don’t be deceived, my dear brothers. 17  Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. 18  He chose to give us birth through the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of all he created.

Judas’ sinful desire for Money (The LOVE of Money is the root of all evil), led to his downfall. He’d been chosen by the Lord, given a fantastic opportunity to be alongside the most awesome person to set foot upon the earth, yet he chose money over a person’s life. Judas, even before Satan entered into him, was a wayward character.

He Dips His Bread In The Same Cup As The LORD:

Remember what Jesus said, “He who dips his bread in the cup”…

Mark 14:18-21 18  While they were reclining at the table eating, he said, “I tell you the truth, one of you will betray me—one who is eating with me.” 19  They were saddened, and one by one they said to him, “Surely not I?” 20  “It is one of the Twelve,” he replied, “one who dips bread into the bowl with me. 21  The Son of Man will go just as it is written about him. But woe to that man who betrays the Son of Man! It would be better for him if he had not been born.”

Dipping his bread in the same cup as the Lord: Only close friends would do that. I can’t imagine letting anyone dip their biscuit in my cup of coffee or tea, but a really good friend, I might consider it 🙂 Judas and all the Disciples were by now, very close and good friends of the Lord Jesus, yet he was going to betray the Lord. It would be better not to have been born than betray the Son of Man: The Lord Jesus Christ. Each time we’re tempted to wander away from the Lord, we should remember the cost of betrayal. “It would be better not to have been born”… There’s always going to be very BITTER REGRET.

The Kiss of Death

We must now turn to the actual act of betrayal: When Jesus revealed that one from among those He’d chosen would betray Him.

Luke 22:47-48 “While he was still speaking a crowd came up, and the man who was called Judas, one of the Twelve, was leading them. He approached Jesus to kiss him, 48  but Jesus asked him, “Judas, are you betraying the Son of Man with a kiss?”

A kiss of greeting between good friends is a wonderful thing, it denotes great closeness, fondness and fellowship. So much of what Judas did as a disciple has entered into folk-lore and there are so many sayings for Betrayal linked directly back to what Judas did when he betrayed our Lord Jesus.

Saints Who Give the Kiss of Death to Jesus:

We’ve all seen brothers and sisters who’ve been like Judas, who’ve wandered away from the Lord because of the pleasures of sin and the deceitfulness of wealth. Ministers who once had a thriving ministry with powerful signs and wonders accompanying, then they gave into the pride of life, the deceitfulness of wealth or sexual sins. Satan loves nothing more than to draw our affections away from Jesus and serving in His Kingdom to other things. In the beginning those things can look good or innocent, but when they take our time, talents and treasures away from the Lord’s work, they’ll lead to our downfall like Judas. Let’s not be found guilty of giving The Kiss of Death to our walk with Jesus.

My friends, don’t let anything you do be The Kiss of Death to your relationship with the LORD.

I’m praying that I won’t be a Judas, that I won’t ever offer the Kiss of Death, pretending close affinity, but inwardly filled with evil intent. That the Lord will so fill me with His Holy Spirit and my will and heart’s desire will always be to walk in righteousness and holiness with Him. I’m also praying that for all my friends and everyone reading this today. It’s so easy to be a Judas and only realise later and bitterly regret that you’ve betrayed the Lord. Satan, the World and our own sinful flesh are so deceptive and enticing, LORD help us to live always for you and not for our own pleasures because we know that it will be the Kiss of Death to all our relationships but most importantly with You Lord. Amen!

Have an Awesome day with Jesus.
Don.

When Judas betrayed Jesus, it was with The Kiss of Death.

 

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.

 

A Word In Season

Daily Spirit & Word, 462: A Word In Season.

Bible Memorisation: Benefit #7 Usefulness in the Kingdom of God.

Good morning my friends, it’s a cold, wet March morning here in London, but I’m back in the study ready to praise and worship the Lord. Today we’re on the final Benefit of Bible Memorisation, but I thought it good to just remind ourselves of what we’ve looked at so far;

  • Benefit #1: Goodness comes from the Good you store up in your heart.
  • Benefit #2: Knowing How to Use the Sword: God’s Word. And the benefit of the Helmet of Salvation.
  • Benefit #3: Knowing God’s Word Gives Believers True Hope and Peace For Times of Despair.
  • Benefit #4: Divine Expectations: Eating not for one or two but for thousands of souls.
  • Benefit #5: It’s an Anchor for the Soul: Fastened to the Rock, the Lord Jesus Christ.
  • Benefit #6: We’re only as strong as our weakest link: In the Chain that leads to the Anchor.

Now we come onto the Seventh Benefit: But to be honest, I could think of Seven Hundred Benefits of Storing God’s Word in your heart 🙂 However, Seven gives us something manageable.

 Benefit #7: You’ll Be Useful in the Service of the Kingdom: A Word in Season.

Since I’ve been a very young Christian, I’ve gotten into the habit of getting up early to spend time with my Lord Jesus. I do that because I’m a weak Christian and I know how much I need the Lord every day. I also do it because since 1984 I’ve gotten to know the Lord and how His Word impacts my life and the life of others around about me. He gives me words in season, it’s like everything that happens, every conversation or event is filtered through God’s Word. He brings to mind the right word when it’s needed. He also reveals His secrets to those who love Him; His friends. It’s such a privilege and a joy to be used by the Lord to help others into His Kingdom and to build others up whose flame is flickering in the winds of trouble and hardship.

You too will be useful in the service of the Kingdom when you store up God’s Word in your heart, He’ll give you a Word in Season for others too. Don’t underestimate how POWERFUL knowing God’s Word can be. I remember reading a book by Jack Deere “Surprised by the voice of the Spirit”… He was a wonderful man of God, highly educated and knew the Bible inside-out, but one day he was given the task of taking Sunday School, He thought with all his Bible knowledge it would be a breeze, he’d be able to answer any of the children’s questions. Well it didn’t go quite like that, because the children asked practical questions about why God did stuff and why He allowed certain things; Jack was stumped and went home and repented of his pride and arrogance. He asked the Lord to help him to be better equipped to assist the children, then came the voice of the Spirit.

Once, years later he was in his office at Theological College, and a student came into the office who’d been struggling with his course work. When Jack looked at him he got a picture of a banner over his head with the word; “Pornography” written upon it. Jack had gained wisdom from years of spending time in God’s Word, in prayer and knowing Jesus, and he knew enough not to just blurt it out. He asked the student if he was struggling with things? He said in a hushed voice, “Yes Professor Jack”… Jack said, “Is there anything blocking your access to Jesus?” (or something like that) The student blurted it all out, his struggles with pornography etc through tears the student repented and turned again to the Lord.

My friends, you’ll get words from the Lord in Season; A few weeks ago a woman in our fellowship was given a word from the Lord; “Let the children worship”: We thought we were quite good at being inclusive in our worship times, but we were neglecting the children’s full involvement in every aspect of our gatherings. So we’ve repented and we’re encouraging the kids who come regularly, who love the Lord, to be involved in prayers, Bible reading, singing and playing instruments: not just a All Age Worship Services, but every week. The Word: “Suffer little children to come unto me, and do not hinder them, for their’s is the Kingdom of Heaven”.  Praise the Lord for His WORDS in Season and for giving us ears to hear.

Here’s the WORD for today;

Isaiah 50:4-7  “The Sovereign LORD has given me an instructed tongue, to know the word that sustains the weary. He wakens me morning by morning, wakens my ear to listen like one being taught. 5  The Sovereign LORD has opened my ears, and I have not been rebellious; I have not drawn back. 6  I offered my back to those who beat me, my cheeks to those who pulled out my beard; I did not hide my face from mocking and spitting. 7  Because the Sovereign LORD helps me, I will not be disgraced. Therefore have I set my face like flint, and I know I will not be put to shame.”

Can you recognise who Isaiah is talking about? It is of course a prophetic word about the Messiah, the Lord Jesus Christ. Remember how he was mocked, spat upon, beaten etc… Yet those words are also prophetically true for every single BELIEVER who trusts in the Lord Jesus Christ. How? Well the Lord will awaken you in the mornings, He’ll awaken you and give you an ear to listen, like one being taught. You’ll learn from the LORD Himself as you set your face like flint to serve the Lord God Almighty with your life. The more you store God’s Word in your heart and life, the more He’ll use you in the Service of His Kingdom.

Getting God’s Word Inside Your Head: Means taking time to be with the Lord, in His Word, in Prayer, in Praise, in the Spirit. Once you’ve started, you’ll never want to stop, because you’ll see quickly how the Lord will use you for service in His Kingdom.

Yes my friends, by getting to know the Lord and His Word you are useful for Service in God’s Kingdom, but how?

It will keep you; Pure, you’ll have the ready sword of the Lord, you’ll remain fixed to the Anchor the Lord Jesus Christ, because you’ll always be aware of your need for Him. You’ll experience His hope and peace in times of despair. He’ll fill your heart with Divine Expectations that you’ll want and know how much God wants all people to come to know Him as you do, you’ll be filled with His compassion and love for all people, you’ll be transformed into the likeness of God’s Son Jesus Christ daily as you come to Him in His Word. You CAN do it! Begin today!

 Matthew 6:33 Kingdom Service. Seek First The Kingdom of God.

The LORD know ALL of your needs my friends, but He’s commanded us to seek first His Kingdom. To put it in first priority order in our lives and then He’ll give us everything else that we need to survive. He’ll also reveal to you the secrets of the Kingdom.

Matthew 6:25-34 “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? 26  Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27  Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life? 28  “And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labour or spin. 29  Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendour was dressed like one of these. 30  If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? 31  So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32  For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33  But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34  Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

 Is God’s Kingdom First Priority in your life today?

God bless and have a great day with the Lord. Keep singing and praising Him all day long.

My song that’s been in my head since I woke up is, “I’ve got Joy, Joy, Joy, Joy, deep in my heart. Deeep in my heart, Deep in my heart…” 🙂 I’m praising the Lord now.

Don.

 

NOTE:

The Bible Memory Training Course

Many people tell me; “Oh I’ve got a bad memory, I can’t retain facts, it’s too hard to commit to memory” etc, etc… But I can prove very quickly that no matter how old you are, you’ve got a wonderfully functioning memory. It’s a gift from Father God who made you.

 

  1. A) You can remember you house number right? How did you learn that? You know where the number is on the door or gate of your house. You can see the number in your head and you’ve probably touched it and remember what it feels like. That’s HOW we begin to train ourselves to remember the Bible.
  2. B) You can remember all your brothers and sisters, your children and grandchildren’s names can’t you? Yes because you’ve built up a moving picture of them in your mind. You can see them running, smiling, and saying stuff to you. You know them and can see them and you remember their names. If you use your imagination you even know what they smell like. That’s how we can train our minds to remember anything.
  3. C) You can remember, sometimes where you parked your car? LOL. I know, I even forget where I parked if I’m in deep conversation with someone, we seem to go into automatic and close the door and walk away and immediately forget what floor of the car park we were on. But when you take time to take note, you’ll find your car instantly.
  4. D) You don’t need to write a single thing down again, shopping lists can be a thing of the past. For years I’ve been able to instantly recall lists of upto 50 or 100 things, it’s just training and practice. I learned an awesome little technique that we’re going to share with everybody soon on our little Bible Memory Course.

However, when I’m attending a lecture or a seminar, I always take notes. It helps me to think through what the speaker is saying and aids recall later, but once I’ve learned something, it seems to stay with me forever.

It doesn’t require endless repetition of verses over and over again. After a while, you’ll be able to commit verses to memory quickly and it will take a fraction of a second to review those verses. Our minds are not limited by time, we can instantly recall facts, times, dates, numbers and names. Even quicker than Google 🙂 You’ll never forget your first day at Secondary School or your first date with a boy or girl? You can see their faces and remember their smile and the perfume they wore? Why? Because they were SIGNIFICANT events in your life. Now all you have to do is train your brain to make everything you want to remember just as significant. It’s easy and once you begin to see the benefits of having a trained memory, you’ll never look back.

 

Benefit #7: You’ll Be Useful in the Service of the Kingdom: A Word in Season.

 

The Weakest Link

Daily Spirit & Word, 461: The Weakest Link.

“You are ONLY as STRONG as your WEAKEST Link”

Seven Benefits of Bible Memorisation.

Benefit #6 Knowing God’s Word Helps To Maintaining My Purity.

“You are ONLY as STRONG as your WEAKEST Link”

On Saturday we talked about the Lord being the Anchor for your soul, today our focus is upon being able to maintain your purity as a Christian through Bible Memorisation. Bible Memory Training is good for the soul in so many wonderful ways. God’s Word encourages us to know ourselves, our weaknesses as well as our strengths.

The Anchor Chain:

You know that an Anchor is attached to a ship by a great big chain, with chunky links, but a chain is only as strong as it’s weakest link. It’s the same with you in your walk with Jesus. What weakness or weaknesses are there in your life that will keep you away from the Saviour.

Jesus was tempted in every area of personality by Satan and each time He was tested Jesus would quote a portion of God’s Word to combat Satan. He used the sword most effectively when at his weakest moments in life. When starving hungry, Satan tempted Jesus to turn stones into bread and he answered Satan by stating, “Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of the Lord”…

That’s what Satan is like, when you’ve been deprived of something that you need or think you need for survival he’ll come and offer you something on a plate, but know that when Satan is offering you something like that, it’s going to lead you away from your walk with Jesus. You see my friends, Satan’s purpose is to see you fall, fail and fracture, he wants to break your connection to the Anchor for your soul.

The Chain Is ONLY as STRONG as it’s WEAKEST LINK.

In your battle to maintain purity, you’ll need to get to know your weak areas and strengthen them.

When an Anchor Chain is suspected of having a weak link, those links are inspected and when one is found to be cracked or damages in some way, it’s either replaced or welded. When you weld a piece of metal, then that weld makes it stronger than every other part of the link.

Possible Weak Links:

You know my friends, every weakness and sin is covered in the Bible many times and the LORD has ensured that within His revelation to you and me, there’s a portion that deals with your WEAKEST LINKS.

  • If your weakest link is depression, then Psalm 40 and Psalm 42 will definitely help you.
  • If you weakest link is materialism and greed for the worlds things, then you’ve got 1 Timothy 6.
  • If your weakest link is anger or swearing with a foul mouth, bad temper and an angry spirit, then you have Ephesians 4.
  • If your weakest link is lust, pornography or an immoral thought life, then you’ve got Ephesians 5 to help you.

In each of the areas above I’ve given only one scripture, but my friends in every case there are many more, because God’s Word is filled with awesome principles and precepts that will help you with every WEAK LINK in your life. There’s NO sin you can imagine doing that God’s Word has not covered.

I don’t know who coined the phrase; “Sin will keep you from the Bible, or the Bible will keep you from sin.” But it’s so true. When we get God’s Word into our hearts, minds, life and soul, then it’s more likely to keep us on the pathway of purity. Knowing the Lord Jesus Himself is of course key, being filled daily with the Holy Spirit cannot be forgotten, but the next most powerful way to strengthen every single one of your LINKS in the chain connecting you to your anchor (The Lord Jesus Christ) is to weld them in place by storing them in your inner being; Bible Memory Training.

Key Bible Verses:

These will enable you to know the precept that storing God’s Word is fundamental or foundational training in Discipleship and the pathway to Christian maturity.

Proverbs 23:7 (KJV) As A Man THINKETH.

“For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he: Eat and drink, saith he to thee; but his heart is not with thee.”

Psalm 119:11 “I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you.”

Proverbs 3:5-6 (KJV) “Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. 6  In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.”

Hebrews 12:1-7 (NIV)

2 Corinthians 12:9-10 “But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 10  That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”

Tactics: Knowing Your Enemy:

Sun Tzu (Also Satan’s Tactics against Believers in the Lord Jesus Christ).

The Enemy: “When strong, avoid them. If of high morale, depress them. Seem humble to fill them with conceit. If at ease, exhaust them. If united, separate them. Attack their weaknesses. Emerge to their surprise.” Sun Tzu.

I want to fill it out a little;

  • When your enemy is strong, avoid them.
  • When they have high morale, depress them.
  • When they seem humble, then fill them with conceit.
  • When they are at ease, exhaust them.
  • If they are united, then separate them.
  • Attack their weaknesses.
  • Emerge to their surprise.

When you look at these tactics of the Chinese Tactical Warfare Expert, Sun Tzu, you’ll notice they are some of the ways that Satan attacks the Believer. So my friends, knowing your Weaknesses must therefore be a key to your victory in the Christian life. For when you know your weaknesses, then you can be strong. Christians are not to focus upon those weaknesses, but opon the LORD who’ll enable us to gain victory by meditating on His revelation in those areas. He’ll enable us to overcome all our weaknesses.

It’s my hope and prayer that you’ll be seeing the need to Memorise, Internalise, Meditate and Think about God’s Word every single day. Strengthen every WEAK LINK in your life with God’s Word and you’ll be well on your way to Christian maturity and Spiritual growth.

Have and AWESOME week my friends.

Don.

Seven Benefits of Bible Memorisation.

Benefit #6 Knowing God’s Word Helps To Maintaining My Purity.

The Weakest Link.

 

The Helmet & The Sword

God’s Word The Sword of The Spirit

Daily Spirit & Word, 456: The Helmet & The Sword

Seven Benefits of Memorising God’s Word.

Benefit #2: Knowing God’s Word; The Sword of The Spirit.

 Ephesians 6:17 “Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.”

Good morning my friends, today I want to highlight one of the practical aspects of Bible Memorisation, but also pointing out one of the dangers too.

First the Danger: There is a tendency within the human heart, some think it noble, right and good, and there are some aspects of it that are great in the workplace and world; they are INDEPENDENCE of spirit, STRENGTH, DETERMINATION and ABILITY. When we see these evident in our children we praise and honour them. However, the danger of being able to memorise the Bible is that we could mistake that for our relationship with the Lord Jesus and the need of being dependent upon the Holy Spirit to illuminate Scripture and give us the strength to live the Christian life. Without the Holy Spirit, simply using our own human faculties, we’ll never truly understand or be able to apply the Word of God to our lives, because the things of the Spirit are foolishness to the world (or the man without the Spirit cannot understand the things of God). So we must get that relationship with Jesus Christ right first, then maintain it and then being led by the Spirit memorise / internalise God’s Word. There are some people in the world who could / can memorise the whole Bible and mesmerise others with the talents, but still not become a dependent believer in the Lord Jesus Christ. That’s why the Helmet of Salvation comes before the Sword of the Spirit in the list of the Gospel Armour in Ephesians. When we put it on daily, we’ll be remembering that we’re saved by God’s Grace through our Faith and Trust in The Lord Jesus Christ and not by mere Human effort or ability.

Bible Memory: The Sword of the Spirit: The Word of God.

The Spirit Enables You to Wield the Sword (God’s Word) When Required.

Ephesians 6:17 “Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.”

Internalized Scripture keeps our minds in good working order and when required we’ll be able to recall the right scriptures for whatever situations we face in life.

John Ruskin, the brilliant British social critic whose views about art and architecture were influential during the Victorian and Edwardian periods of English history, testifies to this. Ruskin was an author, poet, and creative thinker; and today Ruskin College in Oxford is named for him. Leo Tolstoy described him as “one of those rare men who think with their heart.”

When he was young, Ruskin’s mother insisted that he memorize seventeen different chapters of the Bible, word perfect, six of them from the Old Testament. She also assigned an additional eight psalms.

When he was fifty-five, Ruskin said that memorizing these chapters had “established my soul in life.” He said that though afterward he learned many things from many teachers, the “installation” of the Bible into his brain became “the most precious and on the whole the one essential part of all my education. For the chapters became indeed strictly conclusive and productive to me in all modes of thought.”

My friends, All truth is God’s truth, it can be found in Creation itself, the mathematics of the Universe for example, but Scripture is His revealed truth and provides the intellectual foundations for all the rest. God’s written WORD provides the historical, philosophical, theological, and psychological scaffolding within which all other facts become united. It reveals the wisdom of God regarding everything from daily life to eternal life. Without the engraving of Scripture in our minds, we’re left with a brain filled with the rantings and ravings of a confused human intellect, which is in fact foolishness to God.

Jesus Modeled How to Use God’s Word (The Sword of the Spirit).

At the beginning of His ministry, when Jesus faced Satanic temptation in the wilderness, He used verses for the Old Testament. Of course Jesus knew God’s Word completely: He is the Word (John 1) He’d knew the full meaning of the Old Testament and often explained what it meant from a Divine perspective. Throughout His ministry Jesus often quoted verses, in the last, most stress-filled, anguished and painful moments of His life, Jesus again quoted Old Testament Scriptures, such as: “Into Your hands I commit My spirit” (Luke 23:46 NKJV) and “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” (Matt. 27:46 KJV). These are direct quotes from Psalm 31 and Psalm 22. Our Lord was quoting Scripture as He was dying upon the cross, that’s how internalised God’s Word was in our Saviour. He really was the living Word.

If Jesus embodied God’s Word and demonstrated to us how to think clearly during those six torturous hours upon the cross, just think how much they can help us through the stress and strain of each day in our lives. When we recall Bible verse, when we bring them to mind, sometimes the Holy Spirit will bring them to our remembrance, they become like fountains of life-giving water for the thirsty wanderer in a dusty dry desert.

Today we’ve seen that we need both; The Helmet & The Sword.

The Helmet: Knowing Jesus as Lord and Saviour: Daily knowing and remembering that we’re saved by God’s Grace, through Faith and Trust in the Lord Jesus Christ.

The Sword of The Spirit: Is our only offensive weapon in Christian warfare against spiritual forces of evil in this life, so what better use of the time the Lord has given could we have than being employed in retaining His Word for life.

Bible Memory Course:

If you’d like to know how to get God’s Word into your Memory Banks (Stored for Life), we’ll be running an Online Bible Memory Training Course / Alongside a Group / Class in Church. Let me know if you are interested.

Have an Awesome Wednesday with Jesus.

Don.

Seven Benefits of Bible Memorisation.

Benefit #2 God’s Word: The Sword of The Spirit.

God’s Word The Sword of the Spirit.

 

 

Choose This Day Whom You Shall Sever

Daily Spirit & Word, 440: Choose This Day Whom You Shall Serve.

As for me and my household, we will serve the LORD.

Choose this day whom you shall serve
Choose this day whom you shall serve

 

 Daily Spirit & Word, 440: Choose This Day Whom You Will Serve.

As for me and my household, we will serve the LORD.

Good morning my friends, it was a wonderful Saturday which began with the Preacher’s Breakfast and ended with picking up the Grandchildren from Kids Space in Croydon. They enjoyed the whole day with their father, but by the time we got home they were all fast asleep in the car and it meant a tip-toe up to bed and gingerly getting them ready, trying not to rouse them from slumber.

Grandchildren at McDonalds Purley Way
Grandchildren at McDonalds Purley Way

If that is how we love our children and grandchildren, then as Christians we need to know our Heavenly Father loves us even more. We get warm-fuzzy-feelings when we see them happy, imagine Father’s joy when He knows we’re thrilled with His company and blessings?

Joshua 24:14-15
14 “Now fear the LORD and serve him with all faithfulness. Throw away the gods your forefathers worshipped beyond the River and in Egypt, and serve the LORD.
15 But if serving the LORD seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your forefathers served beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD.”

My grandchildren have been staying with us over the last few days whilst their bathroom is being re-decorated and walls in the hallway and one bedroom being re-plastered, by the time they get out of bed I’ve been up praying and studying the Bible, but they come into my study and want to know everything. They’ll say, “Papa, what are you doing?” I’ll tell them, “Why are you doing that Papa?” they are naturally full of questions and interested in what Papa is doing, but what are they really doing? They are trying to get Papa’s full attention. Because I love them, I can’t deny them my heart, they win and we end up eating breakfast together.

For us, Christians, our FATHER is longing for us to wake up and be with Him. To ask Him the question, “What are you doing Abba?” (Daddy, Father) Knowing the Father’s will and what He wants us to do is critical to our walk and witness in the world. When you wake up in the morning you are faced with the same choice Joshua put before the People of Israel: to cast aside all other worldly desires, all those things that would tug your heart and devotion away from your Heavenly Father and to choose each and every morning “Choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve”.

Joshua brought them to this point after leading the people for many years. What was it that Joshua had discovered in all that time? He’d been selected by the LORD as Israel’s leader, but before he took the reigns the Lord said to him; take time to read this for it’s very important in answering that question:

Joshua 1:1-9

After the death of Moses the servant of the LORD, the LORD said to Joshua son of Nun, Moses’ assistant:  “Moses my servant is dead. Now then, you and all these people, get ready to cross the Jordan River into the land I am about to give to them—to the Israelites. I will give you every place where you set your foot, as I promised Moses. Your territory will extend from the desert to Lebanon, and from the great river, the Euphrates—all the Hittite country—to the Great Sea on the west. No-one will be able to stand up against you all the days of your life. As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will never leave you nor forsake you. “Be strong and courageous, because you will lead these people to inherit the land I swore to their forefathers to give them. Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go. Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful. Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.”

Now can you see why Joshua would say, “Choose this day whom you will serve” and “But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD”.

  • That LORD has been with Joshua.
  • The LORD had given him victory.
  • The LORD had given him the land of promise.
  • The LORD had defeated and driven out the enemy before them.
  • The LORD was with them all they way.

His repeated promise to Joshua, “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.”

Choosing the LORD over the Promises and Pull of the world 
Guarantees SUCCESS and VICTORY in the Christian life.

Jesus gave the same kind of invitation many times and in different ways; “Take up your cross daily”. “Follow me and I will make you …”, “Take my yoke…” “Learn from me….” “Come to me…”

My friends, when we choose each day to be with our Father, the same God as Joshua’s, offering the same promises to you and me, we’re choosing VICTORY, we’re choosing SUCCESS, we’re choosing Divine COMPANIONSHIP and we’re choosing BLESSINGS beyond belief.

 

Joshua was reflecting back in chapter 14 what the LORD had done and decided he and his family were going to continue with the LORD. As you reflect back over your Spiritual Walk with Jesus, can you see that choosing Him over the world and it’s powerful pull has been better by far?

 

I know that I can, because each time, as a Christian, I’ve wandered away from Jesus will for my life, when I’ve neglected being with Him, when I’ve left off reading His Word, my life would become darkness, the Lord would seem distant and every decision I made whilst not being with Him was doubtful. However, when I’m with Jesus, being in His presence daily; in prayer, worship, study, desiring His will and way in my life, there’s everything He promised Joshua and more. My heart cries out to Him right now; “Oh to be in your Presence LORD! To sit at Your feet… this is my desire”

 

Just as my grandchildren know they can get Papa’s attention, you too will be assured of Father God’s Holy attention and He’ll be with you; BUT you’ve got a solemn choice to make each day.

 

The pull of the world, it’s false promises of delight, joy, happiness, success, prosperity, fulfilment and prestige in the eyes of others is POWERFUL. There’s no doubt about that, but when you weigh it up, all of that, against the overwhelming JOY in being with, walking with, talking with and enjoying FATHER’S presence with you all through the day, we can easily say to the world with all it’s glittering glow, “No, as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD”.Come AND be in your Heavenly Father’s will today.

 

Come AND be in your Heavenly Father’s presence today.

Come AND be and He’ll be, as He promised, with you everywhere your feet touch and you’ll know true VICTORY in life.

Have and AWESOME Sunday with your Heavenly Father.

Don.

Song of Praise.
To be in Your presence,
to sit at Your feet.
Where Your love surrounds me,
And makes me complete.

This is my desire,
Oh LORD,
This is my desire.
This is my desire,
Oh LORD,
This is my desire.

Can also be read on St Luke’s Facebook Page.