Freedom From Fear

Your fears will vanish like the mist they are

Daily Spirit & Word: 779: Freedom From Fear.

Good morning my friends, we had a bit of a scare a few days ago (17th Aug 2016) for about 20 minutes my three year old grandson Karamoko went missing on a very crowded Camber Sands beach. Granny was digging a boat out of the sand with his help, but somehow he wandered away and got lost. Granny panicked, mummy panicked, the people on the beach began to panic. Granny phoned me and asked me to pray. I did of course, immediately, I talked to Father God through Jesus and asked Him to return Karamoko unharmed. A few minutes later I got another call back from a very relieved Julie, “He’s been found”… What do you do in a situation when you get fearful of what might happen?

Jeremiah 38:19 (NIV)  King Zedekiah said to Jeremiah, “I am afraid of the Jews who have gone over to the Babylonians, for the Babylonians may hand me over to them and they will ill-treat me.”

In the book of the Prophet of the Lord, Jeremiah, we read about the capture of Jerusalem by the Babylonians. However, King Zedekiah was more afraid of being mocked and illtreated by his fellow Jews than he was of the mighty Babylonian King and his army. However, there’s yet one more person whom he’s also less afraid of; God.

 Zedekiah’s Fears

“And Zedekiah the king said unto Jeremiah, I am afraid of the Jews that are fallen to the Chaldeans, lest they deliver me into their hand, and they mock me.” (Jeremiah 38:19)

Jeremiah had, through the revealed Word of God, instructed Zedekiah, the king of Judah, to go to the Babylonians and surrender. Our verse tells us Zedekiah’s response. He did not want to do as Jeremiah / the LORD had instructed him. Zedekiah’s response reveals his fears. We note from this verse what he feared and what he didn’t.

What Zedekiah Feared. “I am afraid of the Jews that are fallen to the Chaldeans, lest they deliver me into their hand, and they mock me.” Zedekiah was afraid of men and of mocking. He was afraid of what men might do to him. He feared being harmed by the Israelites who had gone over to the Babylonians. But if you are afraid of what men will do to you or might do to you, then you won’t do very well in doing the will of God.

Zedekiah’s Greatest Fear: Zedekiah especially feared mocking. He had so much pride and did not want to be mocked. He was so afraid somebody would make fun of him for obeying God. Many Christians are no different. They cower before mocking and do not obey God or they might get laughed at by someone. If you are afraid of being laughed at, then you won’t be able to do much for the Kingdom of the LORD, because His ways are always the opposite of the world’s ways. He values what the world doesn’t. Remember that your Lord Jesus experienced lots and lots of mocking and scorning in order to provide Salvation for us. We must not hide our testimony for Jesus just because we’re afraid of a little mocking.

What Zedekiah Did Not FEAR:

Zedekiah did not fear to disobey God. He did not fear the judgment of God. Jeremiah had warned Zedekiah that not surrendering to the Babylonians would bring God’s judgment. But Zedekiah did not fear that part of the message of Jeremiah. He was more afraid of what men could do to him and that they might mock him.

Imagine that, Zedekiah had been clearly warned by the LORD what would happen to him, his country, his women and children, and yet he thought more about being mocked. He’d also been told that if he surrendered he’d be SAFE.

Zedekiah is not alone is this lack of fear of the LORD. To be honest we’re all a bit like that. We worry much more about what people think about us than what the LORD thinks. The truth is, even amongst Christians, there are very few people fear God today. We don’t fear His judgment upon their sins, but instead fear what people will think about us.

What do you fear today? Are you afraid of men and of mocking or do you fear the the Lord God Almighty? You are going to fear someone—make sure you fear God and His judgment more than man and his mocking.

Here are two more verses that might just help in overcoming our fear of men:

Proverbs 9:10 (NIV) “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom, and knowledge of the Holy One is understanding.

If only Zedekiah had listened to Jeremiah.

Matthew 10:28 (NIV) “Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell.”

The major reason Zedekiah or every Christian shouldn’t be afraid is that the LORD is with us.

Psalm 118:4-14 (NIV)
4  Let those who fear the LORD say: “His love endures for ever.”
5  In my anguish I cried to the LORD, and he answered by setting me free.
6  The LORD is with me; I will not be afraid. What can man do to me?
7  The LORD is with me; he is my helper. I will look in triumph on my enemies.
8  It is better to take refuge in the LORD than to trust in man.
9  It is better to take refuge in the LORD than to trust in princes.
10  All the nations surrounded me, but in the name of the LORD I cut them off.
11  They surrounded me on every side, but in the name of the LORD I cut them off.
12  They swarmed around me like bees, but they died out as quickly as burning thorns; in the name of the LORD I cut them off.
13  I was pushed back and about to fall, but the LORD helped me.
14  The LORD is my strength and my song; he has become my salvation.

When FEAR took FLIGHT: I can’t forget the day that FEAR departed from my life. All my life I’d been afraid of the dark and death, but when I trusted Jesus my fears vanished like a mist. Fear really is a mist, it doesn’t exist except in our imagination of what might or may happen. So treat fear like the mist it is, and trust in something more solid, sure and certain: Jesus is with you. Amen!

So my friends, when fear strikes, TRUST in the LORD: Don’t listen to your fears: Don’t worry about being mocked: Why because when you’ve trusted in Jesus for your Salvation, then He is with you, you are indwelt with the Holy Spirit (God Himself takes up residence in your life when Jesus becomes your King). From the moment you trust in Jesus there’s no need to be afraid of men. If fear creeps in, cast it out in the Name of Jesus.

If you are still AFRAID: Ask yourself this question: “Is Jesus really my King?”… If there is any part or aspect of your life that you’ve not submitted to Him, get on your knees now and hand your life over into the mighty hands of the Loving Saviour. He’ll deliver you from all your fears. Amen!

PRAYER: O Lord, I can see that I’ve been listening to my fears rather than trusting in You, forgive my foolish ways O Lord. Amen.

Don.

P.S. I can’t forget the day that FEAR departed from my life. All my life I’d been afraid of the dark and death, but when I trusted Jesus my fears vanished like a mist. Fear really is a mist, it doesn’t exist except in our imagination of what might or may happen. So treat fear like the mist it is, and trust in something more solid, sure and certain: Jesus is with you. Amen!

P.S. If you want to read all about Zedekiah and what happened when Babylon invaded, it’s an exciting read: Start reading at Chapter 21, it’s so good you won’t want to put your Bible down until you’ve read it all :-)…

 

Oh Happy Day

The smile on your face lets me know you need me, there's a look in your eyes saying you'll never leave me

Daily Spirit & Word: 771: Oh Happy Day

You Have the POWER to Deliver.

With Jesus ALL THINGS Are Possible.

BUT:

  • No Prayer = No Power.
  • No Fasting = No Feasting.
  • No Faith = Nothing will Happen.

Good morning my friends, just ONE more day and the “Oh Happy Day” Gospel Festival will be here. Praise the LORD! What a Golden Opportunity to share Jesus with the whole of West Norwood.

The idea came from Pastor David of the Portuguese Fellowship meeting at Lansdowne Evangelical Church. He shared with Peter Day and I, then with the two other Ministers we pray with regularly: Richard from Chatsworth Baptist and Dennis from Worldwide Mission Fellowship. His vision was “Reaching out to our community with the Love and Joy of the Lord”, The Lord had given him some Scriptures to back up the vision too and as we shared the vision took on form and substance. Now we’re committed to going ahead in St Luke’s Church and grounds together. We’re giving away free food, free music, free face-painting, free fitness fun, free fun photography, free art activity, free children’s games and activities. It’s going to be AWESOME! (However, we need to PRAY: There’s a gathering tonight at Lansdowne Church: 8.00pm: Come and let’s give this EVENT some POWER).

I was praying and reading God’s word today and this passage jumped out at me;

Luke 9:37-45 (NIV) Disciples Failure To Deliver.
37  The next day, when they came down from the mountain, a large crowd met him.
38  A man in the crowd called out, “Teacher, I beg you to look at my son, for he is my only child.
39  A spirit seizes him and he suddenly screams; it throws him into convulsions so that he foams at the mouth. It scarcely ever leaves him and is destroying him.
40  I begged your disciples to drive it out, but they could not.”
41  “O unbelieving and perverse generation,” Jesus replied, “how long shall I stay with you and put up with you? Bring your son here.”
42  Even while the boy was coming, the demon threw him to the ground in a convulsion. But Jesus rebuked the evil spirit, healed the boy and gave him back to his father.
43  And they were all amazed at the greatness of God. While everyone was marvelling at all that Jesus did, he said to his disciples,
44  “Listen carefully to what I am about to tell you: The Son of Man is going to be betrayed into the hands of men.”
45  But they did not understand what this meant. It was hidden from them, so that they did not grasp it, and they were afraid to ask him about it.

Verse 40: “I begged your disciples to drive it out, but they could not.”

I knew from my reading of the Bible that other passages in Scripture tell us why they couldn’t do it, but hadn’t noticed before that Luke’s account, doesn’t even dwell upon the reasons why the Disciples couldn’t deliver the boy.

Luke’s doesn’t go into the reasons WHY the Nine Disciples couldn’t drive out the Demon when Jesus, Peter, John and James returned down the mountain.

When Jesus was away there was an opportunity to act in faith and continue the word to which they had recently returned from with great joy; Healing, Delivering, Casting out Demons in the name of Jesus. But now they couldn’t do it. WHY?

Thankfully Matthew and Mark give us some more details that fill out this account of Deliverance from Evil Spirits.

They also reveal the reasons WHY they couldn’t set the boy free of the Demon.

Matthew 17:14-21 (NKJV)
14  And when they had come to the multitude, a man came to Him, kneeling down to Him and saying,
15  “Lord, have mercy on my son, for he is an epileptic and suffers severely; for he often falls into the fire and often into the water.
16  So I brought him to Your disciples, but they could not cure him.”
17  Then Jesus answered and said, “O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you? How long shall I bear with you? Bring him here to Me.”
18  And Jesus rebuked the demon, and it came out of him; and the child was cured from that very hour.
19  Then the disciples came to Jesus privately and said, “Why could we not cast it out?”
20  So Jesus said to them, “Because of your unbelief; for assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you.

21  However, this kind does not go out except by prayer and fasting.”

Mark 9:14-29 (NKJV)
14  And when He came to the disciples, He saw a great multitude around them, and scribes disputing with them.
15  Immediately, when they saw Him, all the people were greatly amazed, and running to Him, greeted Him.
16  And He asked the scribes, “What are you discussing with them?”
17  Then one of the crowd answered and said, “Teacher, I brought You my son, who has a mute spirit.
18  And wherever it seizes him, it throws him down; he foams at the mouth, gnashes his teeth, and becomes rigid. So I spoke to Your disciples, that they should cast it out, but they could not.”
19  He answered him and said, “O faithless generation, how long shall I be with you? How long shall I bear with you? Bring him to Me.”
20  Then they brought him to Him. And when he saw Him, immediately the spirit convulsed him, and he fell on the ground and wallowed, foaming at the mouth.
21  So He asked his father, “How long has this been happening to him?” And he said, “From childhood.
22  And often he has thrown him both into the fire and into the water to destroy him. But if You can do anything, have compassion on us and help us.”
23  Jesus said to him, “If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes.”
24  Immediately the father of the child cried out and said with tears, “Lord, I believe; help my unbelief!”
25  When Jesus saw that the people came running together, He rebuked the unclean spirit, saying to it, “Deaf and dumb spirit, I command you, come out of him and enter him no more!”
26  Then the spirit cried out, convulsed him greatly, and came out of him. And he became as one dead, so that many said, “He is dead.”
27  But Jesus took him by the hand and lifted him up, and he arose.
28  And when He had come into the house, His disciples asked Him privately, “Why could we not cast it out?”
29  So He said to them, “This kind can come out by nothing but prayer and fasting.”

Both Matthew and Mark reveal to us: It was the Disciples lack of; faith, prayer and fasting.

They both tell us the Disciples asked Jesus why they couldn’t do it. And He tells them. My friends, if there is something you are perplexed about or don’t know why you are not able to do something, learn from Jesus’ Disciples, go to HIM to find the answers. He will guide you and show you any reasons why something is not happening in your life.

Jesus Reveals: It was lack of Faith, of Prayer and of Fasting.

Lack of FAITH: Having a faith that can move mountains: I’ve never moved a mountain, but sometimes the LORD gives me the gift of faith to pray in a certain way that things happen. I do sometimes sense the Spirit’s power in prayer and when that happens, things happen too. It’s not all the time, sometimes I’m praying for someone, and I know in my Spirit, the Lord is not going to give them what they want. He hears all prayers, sometimes He’ll give us faith to move those mountains. But sometimes, it’s not His will or it’s not the right time or He’s going to answer later. He always hears us when we pray in faith.

Lack of PRAYER: Prayer is the vital connection with Jesus in faith. Without prayer we’re powerless to do anything. Perhaps the Disciples were not operating under Jesus’ authority, but out of past experience. They were probably thinking, “We did it before, we can do it easily again”… They didn’t seek the LORD in prayer or even pray to the Father as Jesus would later instruct them… (The Lord’s Prayer Luke 11).

Lack of FASTING: Fasting teaches us to rely upon the LORD more for our daily needs. It brings us closer to Jesus and enables us to see things we’d never see unless we go without. When I fast it’s wonderful. When I get hungry, I turn to Jesus and instead of going to the cupboard or fridge for food to the Bible and Prayer and Praise. It’s totally awesome when you experience Jesus feeding you at these times. And they do equip you for situations that are happening in your life.

So my friends, if you’ve got some little mountain that needs moving, someone that needs some deliverance, a problem that seems un-resolvable in normal ways, then turn first to Jesus and get the Faith you need, turn to prayer and fast regularly. (Fasting is known to be good for us medically too).

MORE DETAILS: Primary Focus:

There are many other details that all the Evangelists bring out of this account; Matthew, Mark and Luke bring to this account of Deliverance: Some highlight the arguments with the Crowd and the Disciples, some highlight the Amazement and Delight of the Crowd at Jesus. Some highlight what Jesus said afterwards to His Disciples (Luke omits that completely). However, what they all tell us is that this BOY was delivered immediately at Jesus’ command.

When we’ve got FAITH and when we pray and fast (regularly) we’re going to have the POWER too.

  • How’s your faith today? Come closer to Jesus.
  • How’s your prayer life? Come closer to Jesus.
  • How’s your fasting going? Come to Jesus to let Him feed you from Heaven.

By all three; Faith, Prayer and Fasting; we’re going to see our NEED to come regularly to Jesus if we want the POWER to live and operate as His Disciples in the world today. Following Jesus is NOT easy, but there’s POWER in the Spirit available for every Christian today. Not only that, but we have the added security and assurance that Jesus will never leave us alone as He did the Nine, He’s with us always to the very end of the age. Amen!

I’m looking forward to an awesome “Oh Happy Day” Festival tomorrow in St Luke’s Gardens. Come and join us if you can, between 1.00pm and 4.00pm. St Luke’s Church, West Norwood, London. SE27 0HS.

Have some fun and let the smile on your face let the world know that God’s LOVE is in you.

Give them some HOPE in a world that’s devoid of real hope.

Give them some JOY in a world that needs true JOY today.

When the people saw Jesus and his disciples coming down the mountain, the ran to Jesus (Mark 9:15) They ran to Jesus and greeted Him. I’m sure it was the SMILE on Jesus face that drew the crowds to Him that day. It was the JOY in His person. My friends, when we’re full of the glory of the Lord, it will put JOY in other people’s hearts too.

People in the UK and the world have experienced great turmoil, they all need renewed HOPE, renewed JOY in their daily lives. Let’s go out and give them a GREAT BIG SMILE on their faces.

Have an AWESOME Weekend with Jesus, be FULL of Faith in His POWER to Deliver.

Don.

Pastor David’s Scriptures: The Vision for “Oh Happy Day”…

Job 29:23-24 (CEV)
23  My words were eagerly accepted like the showers of spring,
24  and the smile on my face renewed everyone’s hopes.

Proverbs 15:30 (CEV)
30  A friendly smile makes you happy, and good news makes you feel strong.

What the LORD Gave me: “The Smile on Your Face” At a prayer meeting for the event.

The smile on your face let’s me know that you need me,
There’s a truth in your eyes saying you’ll never leave me,
The touch of your hand says you’ll catch me wherever I fall,
You say it best, when you say nothing at all…

NOTE: You’ll probably see in your modern versions of the Bible it says, “Some ancient manuscripts don’t have verse 21 “However, this kind does not go out except by prayer and fasting.” Some will keep it in with a note and others remove it. However, I do believe that this verse is indeed in the original Greek. Over the years the Church (all be it imperfect) kept the best manuscripts and threw away corrupted or those with mistakes, I believe what modern archeologists are discovering are not the BEST and MOST ACCURATE, no we are not discovering “The Oldest and most original” but those that had been rejected by the church. The people who translated the Bible at the time of King James had access to the most reliable texts the church possessed at the time. These had been preserved and carefully collated and many others, perverse texts discarded. The LORD preserves His Word: Let the Spirit guide you into the Truth.

 

God’s Heart to Heal

Do you believe in the God of miracles?

Daily Spirit & Word: 753:

Can The God You Believe In Do Miracles?

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

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

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

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

God Gives LIFE AGAIN to a Widow’s Son.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

The Boy Comes Back To LIFE:

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

NOW I KNOW: God can do anything.

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

BUT: Do YOU Believe He WANTS to do it?

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Knowing the FATHER’S HEART.

Don.

 

They ALL Need Jesus

They ALL Need Jesus. He's calling all people to himself

Daily Spirit & Word: 747: They ALL Need Jesus.

Doing the IMPOSSIBLE with Jesus.

Read to the End Today, there’s a funny story to encourage you.

Good morning my friends, do you remember me telling you about Emma? She became a follower of Jesus last Tuesday, got baptised on Sunday and came out on the streets last night to share the Gospel with us. Emma admits she doesn’t know a lot, but is filled with the desire to lead others to Jesus to experience His promise of what she has received.

When you get to Heaven Jesus is not going to ask if you attended church, worshipped regularly, prayed every day or read your Bible, He’s going to hold you to account for your obedience to His teachings. Emma doesn’t know much, but she knows enough to know that Jesus wants us to bring everyone to Him and last night, fearful, trembling and unsure, she began to really walk in that obedience. You should have seen her face when she came back, she was beaming.

What was great about last night? There was a wonderful TEAM spirit, we split into twos and one group of three. Some went up-town, others went down-town. We’ve been praying slightly differently as I shared a few weeks ago. We’re not asking God to come with us, because we KNOW Jesus is with us, we just thank Him for His PROMISES that when we go in obedience to His Commands that He’ll be with us. We’re not asking for the POWER of the Holy Spirit as much as thanking Him for His PROMISE to empower us and equip us. Oh yes we cry out for the Holy Spirit to work in the lives of those He’s pulling to Jesus and to lead us to the ones He’s already been tugging at their hearts.

Beverley and I were paired together. The first man Bev and I bumped into, David, it was strange, because he said a few times, “This is deep, I don’t know why I’m pouring my heart out to you, I feel like you are my counsellors”. But we knew, because we’d been praying the LORD would be drawing them.   He said, “I never share this with anyone, but I feel I want to with you” He told us about how he was a bad man, was into trouble all the time, got into fights etc, but when his baby came, he knew his life must change, but it didn’t. Then his baby died at 18 months old. His precious baby’s death broke his heart and David began to changed his ways, it was a wake up call. I said, “David, God’s calling you to himself”. You see, David was already humble, he knew he’d sinned against God, but didn’t know about God’s offer of New Life”…

We had a few short conversations with some other folks, but then we got chatting with another young man, this time he told us; “I used to go to church, got baptised as a baby, attended Sunday School, went to a Church School and got confirmed, but it meant nothing to me”… I said, “Do you think you are good enough to get into Heaven when you die?”… He said, “I hope so”. He believed in Heaven, God and Sin and Hell. We began to go through the Commandments and the surprise on his face was evident, he said, “That means no one is good enough to get into Heaven, because we’ve all fallen short of God’s holy standard”. WOWzer! He got it, but still I pushed his understanding a bit more. “Do you know what God has done so that nobody needs to end up in Hell?” He said, “Yes, Jesus, He died upon the Cross to save us from our sins”… I said, “How do you get that forgiveness?” He said “Ask God to forgive you” I said, “Partially, but the Bible tells us we must; Believe that Jesus died for our own sins, those nails being hammered into his hands were for our lies, theft, lust and hatred of others, then we must repent of those sins and receive Jesus as our Lord and Saviour”. He said, “That makes sense”… I shared what it means to actually trust in Jesus, i.e. You wouldn’t jump out of a plane without a parachute would you? No you’d put the parachute on, it’s the same with Jesus, just believing that He can save you is not enough, you’ve got to actually trust in Him and receive Him by faith. I gave him my calling care, and we’re going to meet up for a coffee in Costa (or somewhere 🙂 ) to talk about it a bit more about Jesus.

Ben and Judy have opened my eyes to see that just sharing the Gospel of making Converts is not enough: Jesus didn’t call us to make ‘converts’ but to grow Disciples, followers of Jesus and to see that people begin to be obedient to what they know, as soon as possible after being converted.

But long before Ben and Judy came, the LORD had already been working on my own heart about this, because we’ve been preaching through the Gospel of Mark. I’d already seen that Jesus called people, demonstrated the Kingdom and then sent them out, almost immediately after calling them to follow himself, then when they came back, they were amazed that when they used Jesus’ name, even the Demons submitted to them. However, this surprised me, listen to what Jesus said to them (read it out loud my friends).

Luke 10:1-24 (NIV)
1 After this the Lord appointed seventy-two others and sent them two by two ahead of him to every town and place where he was about to go.
2  He told them, “The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.
3  Go! I am sending you out like lambs among wolves.
4  Do not take a purse or bag or sandals; and do not greet anyone on the road.
5  “When you enter a house, first say, ‘Peace to this house.’
6  If a man of peace is there, your peace will rest on him; if not, it will return to you.
7  Stay in that house, eating and drinking whatever they give you, for the worker deserves his wages. Do not move around from house to house.
8  “When you enter a town and are welcomed, eat what is set before you.
9  Heal the sick who are there and tell them, ‘The kingdom of God is near you.’
10  But when you enter a town and are not welcomed, go into its streets and say,
11  ‘Even the dust of your town that sticks to our feet we wipe off against you. Yet be sure of this: The kingdom of God is near.’
12  I tell you, it will be more bearable on that day for Sodom than for that town.
13  “Woe to you, Korazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the miracles that were performed in you had been performed in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago, sitting in sackcloth and ashes.
14  But it will be more bearable for Tyre and Sidon at the judgment than for you.
15  And you, Capernaum, will you be lifted up to the skies? No, you will go down to the depths.
16  “He who listens to you listens to me; he who rejects you rejects me; but he who rejects me rejects him who sent me.”
17  The seventy-two returned with joy and said, “Lord, even the demons submit to us in your name.”
18  He replied, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven.
19  I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you.
20  However, do not rejoice that the spirits submit to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven.”
21  At that time Jesus, full of joy through the Holy Spirit, said, “I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children. Yes, Father, for this was your good pleasure.
22  “All things have been committed to me by my Father. No-one knows who the Son is except the Father, and no-one knows who the Father is except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him.”
23  Then he turned to his disciples and said privately, “Blessed are the eyes that see what you see.
24  For I tell you that many prophets and kings wanted to see what you see but did not see it, and to hear what you hear but did not hear it.”

Can you see now why we encouraged Emma to come out with us last night?

Emma is not ‘wise or learned’ she was a very recent convert, much like the 72 that Jesus sent out above, but they’d seen enough, they knew enough and they went out in obedience and returned with great JOY. Why?

  • Because all the things that Jesus had told them were TRUE (Jesus only ever spoke the TRUTH, Jesus is “The way, and the Truth and the Life” John 14:6)
  • Because they’d seen how the KINGDOM of God was near when they shared the Good News about the Kingdom. We’ll see that too, but only when we’re obedient and begin to share the Kingdom, the Good News of Jesus.
  • Because “even the demons submit to us in your name”… They’d seen the battle head-on and the power of the Kingdom to subdue the demonic. You’ll see that too, but only when you go out in obedience to Jesus Kingdom Commands.

We too can rejoice, but we should rejoice much more, that because we’ve trusted in Jesus Christ for forgiveness and salvation, that our names are now written in Heaven.

My friends, Jesus is working in Emma’s life, She’s seeing the Kingdom Power and she’s only one week old as a Christian. God is revealing it to babes in Christ. It’s not about learning more or knowing more about God, the Bible etc, it’s about being obedient to what we know already. That’s what’s been challenging me lately, because I know so much, but I’ve discovered just how disobedient I’ve been to what I know. Let’s get more of a desire to do what Jesus told us to do, to learn His teachings and to do them.

Bev and I paired up last night, and she and I saw the Kingdom Power to bring conviction, encouragement and enlighten people in the darkness. It’s when we share what we know, that we’ll see the Kingdom Come. Let’s get going and see a mighty move of God in London, the UK, the world. Amen! “Thy Kingdom Come”….Amen.

Luke 10:23-24 (NIV) Jesus said “…. Blessed are the eyes that see what you see. For I tell you that many prophets and kings wanted to see what you see but did not see it, and to hear what you hear but did not hear it.”

Whoever has ears to hear what the Spirit is saying to the church, let them hear. Amen.

Have an awesome day,

Don.

P.S. I must share a funny story: On Tuesday we had a Pastor’s Meeting in West Norwood: Five of us met to discuss the vision for an event in St Luke’s Gardens on Saturday 16th July, we’ve been led to call it; “Oh Happy Day”. But after the meeting I was walking down the road with Dennis, the Pastor of World Wide Mission Fellowship. He was on the phone to a young man. When he finished his call he said to me, “I’m meeting a young man in a minute, will you ask him “How is Jesus the Lord?”” I said, “OK Dennis, I will” but just at that moment I spotted a huge man, he’s massive, built like an OX, I said, “Dennis, you say the same thing to him”… Dennis just looked at me…he said, “No, you share with that one” I did, I said, “Do you know Jesus is Lord?” … The huge man was Dave from our fellowship, Dennis and I laughed and laughed. You see, it’s wanting to be obedient, that’s what counts. Afterwards, we met the young man, his name was David too. Is the LORD calling the DAVIDS in our Community?

Are you prepared to SHARE Jesus with ANYONE? Don’t go by appearances, don’t go by what a person looks like, because the LORD doesn’t look at the outward appearances, He looks at the HEART. He’s calling ALL people to himself. If we just looked at the outward appearance we’d miss the people the Lord wants us to talk with. If someone is dressed in a smart suit, looks nice and clean, they need Jesus just as much as a man dressed in shabby clothing. All have fallen short of God’s Holy Standards. All need to come to repentance. All need a Saviour from Hell. No my friends, don’t look at how big they are or how small they are, how smart or intelligent a person appears to be, God’s calling EVERYONE into His Kingdom family, they all need Jesus.

You can do the IMPOSSIBLE with Jesus: Peter walked on water with Jesus.

Jesus said, “Apart from me you can do NOTHING”… i.e. everything we try and do, that doesn’t involve Jesus, is NOTHING.

However, Jesus also said, “You will do even greater things”…. Awesome!

P.P.S. Please pray for our West Norwood: “Oh Happy Day”, it’s coming on Saturday 16th July in St Luke’s Gardens. An event for the whole family, Christians united together to share the GREAT things God is doing in this world today. There will be Bands, Choirs, Dancing, Singing, Stalls with Photography, Face-Painting, Exercise (for every ability Kingdom Stretch), Food stalls, Books, Booklets, etc etc… Come to “Oh Happy Day” St Luke’s Gardens, West Norwood. Saturday 16th July. EVERYONE is WELCOME.

 

The Power of Jesus to Heal

Just ONE Touch from the King changes everything

Daily Spirit & Word: 717: The Power Of Jesus Word.

There is POWER in Jesus to Heal

We’ve been following through Mark’s Gospel and we’re now on Chapter 5. The last teaching was about Jesus Power and Authority over Satan and The Demonic, today we observe Jesus healing and raising a little girl from the dead.

The Two Twelves: The Two 12s…
The Woman who has been bleeding for 12 years.
The Little Girl was 12 years old when she died.

Mark 5:21-43 (NIV)
21 When Jesus had again crossed over by boat to the other side of the lake, a large crowd gathered round him while he was by the lake.
22 Then one of the synagogue rulers, named Jairus, came there. Seeing Jesus, he fell at his feet 23 and pleaded earnestly with him, “My little daughter is dying. Please come and put your hands on her so that she will be healed and live.”
24 So Jesus went with him. A large crowd followed and pressed around him. 25 And a woman was there who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years. 26 She had suffered a great deal under the care of many doctors and had spent all she had, yet instead of getting better she grew worse. 27 When she heard about Jesus, she came up behind him in the crowd and touched his cloak, 28 because she thought, “If I just touch his clothes, I will be healed.” 29 Immediately her bleeding stopped and she felt in her body that she was freed from her suffering.
30 At once Jesus realised that power had gone out from him. He turned around in the crowd and asked, “Who touched my clothes?”
31 “You see the people crowding against you,” his disciples answered, “and yet you can ask, ‘Who touched me?’ “
32 But Jesus kept looking around to see who had done it.
33 Then the woman, knowing what had happened to her, came and fell at his feet and, trembling with fear, told him the whole truth.
34 He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering.”

Jairus Get’s Bad News:
35 While Jesus was still speaking, some men came from the house of Jairus, the synagogue ruler. “Your daughter is dead,” they said. “Why bother the teacher any more?”
36 Ignoring what they said, Jesus told the synagogue ruler, “Don’t be afraid; just believe.”
37 He did not let anyone follow him except Peter, James and John the brother of James.
38 When they came to the home of the synagogue ruler, Jesus saw a commotion, with people crying and wailing loudly.
39 He went in and said to them, “Why all this commotion and wailing? The child is not dead but asleep.”
40 But they laughed at him. After he put them all out, he took the child’s father and mother and the disciples who were with him, and went in where the child was.
41 He took her by the hand and said to her, “Talitha koum!” (which means, “Little girl, I say to you, get up!”).
42 Immediately the girl stood up and walked around (she was twelve years old). At this they were completely astonished.
43 He gave strict orders not to let anyone know about this, and told them to give her something to eat.

12 Years Bleeding: “Just One Touch and I will be healed”.

My friends, that’s real FAITH.

Immediately” Jesus realised POWER had gone out from Him.
That touch of faith brought the POWER of HEAVEN.
My friends, when we approach God with FAITH: The Power of Heaven is OPEN…
FAITH: is believing without doubting. It’s a GIFT from God, so that no one can boast. All faith is a Gift from God.

But remember, our FAITH in what God can and will do will grow the more that we know that we can TRUST Him.
It’s a kind of faith that believes without doubting. Do you have that kind of faith?

Let me illustrate: You already have that kind of faith.

A Chair: How do you know that the SEAT you’re sitting on can hold your weight?

When you came in here today, you didn’t stop to check the chair out, to see if it was wobbly or anything, you just sat right down on it.
If you were a stranger walking into this building today, how would you know you could sit down and the chairs would support your weight?
That’s right, you can see other people sitting down. Lots of them, and they are not falling to the floor with everyone laughing at them.

Also Past Experience of sitting in chairs, they’re pretty dependable aren’t they.

In the same way that you can see others have trusted their chairs and not fallen to the floor, you can also see that in this place, some of the people have put their faith in Jesus Christ. No matter what happens in their lives, they don’t fall down, their faith remains, they keep trusting in Jesus, but why? Why do they keep trusting in Jesus, even when life get tough? It’s because they know Jesus, long years of reaching out and touching the Saviour in faith, have given them the assurance that He’s in complete control and knows what He’s doing.

So if you can see that others have had FAITH in their seats, can you see how impressive it is that others have that same kind of FAITH in Jesus. They have sat in those seats many times, so when they walk in to church they don’t even think about it.

My friends, this Woman who’d been bleeding for 12 Long Years: Must have heard about Jesus’ Miracles and as He passed by in the Crowd that day, she thought to herself, as the Scriptures tell us, “If I just touch the hem of His garments, I will be healed”…

What amazing reasoning: “If this Jesus can heal people of all kinds of diseases and deliver them from Demons, then a little issue of bleeding for 12 years will be nothing for this Miracle worker, all I need to do is reach out and touch Him”.

More about that reaching out to Jesus in a minute, but look what happened next;

NEXT: Jesus Brings LIFE back into a 12 year old dead girl.

The Girls Father: first a word about Jairus.
What encouragement Jesus gave Jairus.
He was a Synagogue Ruler… The Synagogue was a place of worship for Jews. Jairus was a very important man in society.
Mark 5:22-23 “Seeing Jesus, he fell at his feet 23 and pleaded earnestly with him, “My little daughter is dying. Please come and put your hands on her so that she will be healed and live.””

“Jairus FELL AT HIS FEET”: Here was a Ruler falling at Jesus feet and begging Him… My friends, if you want Jesus to do something for you, something you are desperate for the King of Kings to do for you, have you gotten to the point of falling to your knees and pleading with Jesus? Sometimes, we don’t get answers to our prayers UNTIL we’ve gotten to our knees in prayer before God.
It’s not the act of kneeling, it the act of recognition of who Jesus is. Jairus knew only that Jesus was a Miracle worker and teacher. We know that Jesus was God on Earth, that He died because of His love for us, so that we could be forgiven and cleansed of all sin. When we kneel before Jesus today, we’re kneeling before God.

KNEELING: can be just a habit: many people kneel in prayer because that’s what they’ve been taught to do.

But there’s another kind of KNEELING: It’s A Humbling yourself before God. It’s recognising that you don’t deserve anything from Him and yet still coming to Him. Pleading for His grace, mercy, kindness… He loves our FAITH… He loves our TRUST… What’s stopping us KNEELING before Jesus?

PEOPLE KNEEL BEFORE THE QUEEN:
When the New Years Honours come around, people kneel before the Queen to be Knighted. They bow the knee in recognition of her Majesty and Authority. She wears a Crown to symbolise her Majestic Authority over her subjects. When she knights someone she says, “Arise Sir Knight”…
Jesus is the KING of Kings and Queens.
Our Queen has famously said, “I bow the knee to only one other KING and that’s KING Jesus Christ”… The Queen bows to Jesus. Jairus, the Ruler of the Synagogue was in good company… But have we actually BOWED before Jesus?

JUST ONE TOUCH OF THE KING:

The Queen Touches with her sword and says “Arise”… But the KING, our LORD Jesus touches and we cannot help but rise to new heights.

Imagine what frustration Jairus must have felt, when his little girl was at home dying, Jesus stopping along the way to ask, “Who touched Me?”… He would have been thinking to himself, “Oh please Master, come as quick as you can or it will be too late”…
What did Jairus ask Jesus to do for him? “PUT YOUR HANDS ON HER”
Jairus knew there was POWER in the touch of Jesus The Miracle Maker. “Put your hand on her so that she will be healed and live”
Just ONE TOUCH of the KING… Changes everything… (I love that song, because it speaks of a TRUTH about my King Jesus).

  • If it’s us reaching out to Jesus in FAITH: Like the Woman bleeding for 12 years. Changed her life forever. POWER of Heaven Opens: By Faith.
    If it’s up Jesus reaching out to us in His MERCY: Like the little girl’s father, Changed her life forever and her family’s life forever. POWER of Heaven Opens: By Faith.

Just ONE TOUCH of the KING: Changes EVERYTHING.

BUT THEY LAUGHED AT HIM:

Notice the CROWD that didn’t believe.

  • Like they laughed at Noah, when He built the ARK of God.
  • Like Sara laughed when the LORD said she would have a baby when she was nearly 100 years old.

My friends, if someone came to you and said, “I’m building an Ark because God is sending a flood to destroy the Earth” you’d probably laugh too.
If someone came to your funeral and said, “Put the boy down, I’m going to bring him back to life” You’d probably laugh too.
If someone came into a hospital today, when the doctors has said, “He’s DEAD” and he said, “He Going to LIVE” those Doctors would probably laugh too.
The CROWD Laughed at Jesus. It’s a laugh of incredulity. It’s a laugh of unbelief. They reason, “We know she’s dead”…

What did Jesus do when they laughed at Him?

That’s right, He put them out of the room. (Mark 5:40).

My friends, it’s a DANGEROUS thing to Laugh at God.
Laughing is Doubting when there’s EVIDENCE that it’s possible.
That kind of laughter is an insult to God.
Jesus put them out of the room.

  • God put Adam and Eve out of the Garden of Eden, when they doubted God and believed the Devil.
  • God put Abraham’s wife Sara out for a while, when she laughed, when told in her old age she’d have a baby.
  • God put Zechariah, John the Baptist’s Dad out for a while when he laughed, when in their old age he and Sarah would have a baby; He was struck dumb until he wrote what the Angel told him, “His name shall be John”.

Unbelief (Stubborn Doubt) means exclusion from the things of God.
“He put them all out”… For laughing. For their unbelief.
My friends, if you are LAUGHING at the possibilities of what God can do today, be aware that it’s going to be very costly indeed. You might just miss the best Miracles you’ll ever witness in your life; only the parents and Jesus’ disciples; Peter, James and John, observed Jesus touching the little girl and her coming back to life.

Remember what Jesus said to Thomas: “Stop DOUBTING and BELIEVE”…. “It’s ME”….
Jesus response to Thomas’ faith once he’d seen Him: John 20:29 (NIV) “Then Jesus told him, “Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.””

Jairus trusted Jesus, instead of laughing, Jairus was full of hope and expectation and faith, he was with Jesus and His disciples in the room when Jesus touched the little girl and LIFE came back into her dead body. That touch of Jesus would change Jairus’ life forever.

After giving the girl back her life Jesus said, “Give her something to eat”…

He didn’t just give back her life, Jesus took care of her hunger too. That’s how much Jesus cares for that little girl my friends.

Do you know, that’s how much Jesus cares for you too. When you get the NEW LIFE Jesus wants to feed you with Manna from Heaven, The Word of God.

Conclusion:

  • With Just a WORD the 12 year old girl received life.
    With Just a WORD from God, the Universe was formed.
    With Just a WORD from Jesus, Demons flew out of a man.
    With Just a WORD from Jesus, The Storm was stilled.
    With Just a WORD from Jesus, The Crippled man’s hand was restored.
    With Just a WORD from God: Mankind came into this world.
    With Jesus WORD Lazarus came out of the grave.

There is POWER in the WORD of God.

  • With Just a TOUCH: Moses parted the Red Sea.
    With Just a TOUCH: Water poured from a Rock.
    With Just a TOUCH: Jesus opened a Blind Man’s Eyes.
    With Just a TOUCH: Jesus opened a DEAF Man’s Ears.

There is POWER in the TOUCH of the SAVIOUR.

My friends, Do you believe? Do you have faith? Do you TRUST Jesus can do all that He promised He can do?
He will come into your life: If you turn in faith and trust in His death upon the Cross for your sins. When you repent and put your FAITH in Him, He’ll do it. Do you believe that Jesus will come into your life? To give you NEW LIFE… Once you get NEW LIFE, you’ll also get a NEW HUNGER (New Desires) for the WORD of God. NEW DESIRES to live God’s way: His righteous life.

Just like you’ve seen others sitting in these chairs and believe they can hold your weight. You have FAITH in your seat.
So you can believe that Jesus will DO ALL He’s Promised: He’ll come into your LIFE today; Give you NEW LIFE, NEW HUNGER, NEW JOY… He may also give you FAITH to believe that He can do anything…

He’ll not only give you NEW LIFE, but a NEW HUNGER too.
How’s your hunger for God’s Word? It’s an indication of your place in God’s Family.
“Like babes in Christ, crave the pure milk of the word of God”…

DILLY & DALLY:
DELAY: When I was 12 Years Old. My mother ran a bath for me. She shouted out to me, “Donald, your bath is ready, the water is warm, come and get your bath before the water gets cold”… I dillied and dallied and by the time I got into that bath, the water was cold.
DON’T Dilly and Don’t Dally, the WATER of FAITH is warm today. Jump in and take the plunge and trust in Jesus.
DON’T Be Like the CROWD who LAUGHED: Jesus coming into your life right now might seem impossible, more than you can possibly dream, but Jesus is real, His promise is real, He’ll come if you just; Believe, Turn from Sin, Accept His Sacrifice of Himself upon the Cross for your sins and Receive Him by Faith… YES! You can do it today!…

What if you’ve done that already? You’ve TRUSTED Jesus.
Have you seen the new James Bond Movie? “Spectre”… James Bond is a Special Secret Agent Number 007.. He’s been selected and trained to infiltrate the enemy, wherever the enemy may be found. My friends, God has chosen you to be His Agents (Ambassadors) in this world. You are like His secret special agents; your number is 777… 🙂

You might still be laughing like the CROWD: What about the Plans God has for you? Have you laughed inside yourself, thinking I couldn’t do that, I don’t have the strength, the power or the personality… What’s God been calling you to do for Him, but you’ve laughed or doubted? Sara (Abraham’s wife got the shock of her life when she listened in on the conversation) an old lady having a baby; impossible. My friends, God might be calling you to do something for Him that at this moment in time might seem beyond your capacity, your ability, your power, but believe Him, recognise His POWER to do all things, even with you. He’s done it before and He can do it again through your life. Is Jesus calling you to use your GIFTS in His Service, in the Service of the Kingdom? Remember the weaklings in the Bible that God chose for great things; Moses, Gideon, Jeremiah, they all thought they were not upto the task or calling, but God transformed them all.

So my friends, I’m going to ASK YOU: Will you TRUST Jesus Christ: The POWER of His Word, The POWER of His Touch?
Believe me and everyone else here today, who’ll tell you, “It’s TRUE: Jesus Christ has done it for me and He’ll do it for you too”.
Take the plunge, jump in whilst the water is warm and the time is right.
Reach out in Faith and FEEL the POWER of God coming into your life again today.

Don.

NOTE: When delivering this sermon at an All Age Service yesterday, I split it into two: The Woman with the Issue and then the 12 Year old dead girl.

I used another illustration to show the little bit of faith we might have and it’s power.
A glass of water held over someone’s head, up-side-down… The water didn’t come out because a flimsy piece of paper stopped it. The paper is thin, sometimes our faith appears weak, but it has a might force behind it.
When we use our faith, exercise the little faith that we have, Heaven’s Power is Available. Amen!

Bean Bag Faith

Spanner, Mulgrips, Faith, Holding Fast

Daily Spirit & Word 684: Bean-Bag Faith & Trust.

Faith that grips the Saviour: It’s Love That Lifted Me.

WOWzer! “I had a dream” I was dreaming last night / this morning about how to live the Christian life in the power of the Spirit trusting in the Love of the Lord Jesus. How we can exercise our faith in such a way that it gets stronger and we cling to Jesus more tightly?

You’ll never guess, in my dream I was back in the Royal Navy. (Perhaps it was because I’d been watching the New Series on RN Basic Training on Monday nights, how things have changed 🙂 ).  For many years I was an Electrical Engineer on HM Submarines. Often working in a hot engine room, with steam and oil. Things get very slippery indeed underneath the Oceans.

Once I had to work on an electrical pump, it was bigger than me, the nuts on this thing were huge and due to it’s location in the damp atmosphere of a Steam Turbine, they were rusted on tight. The spanner kept slipping off. The more pressure I applied the more the spanner slipped. Until I finally gave-up on the spanner and delved in my tool-bag for a pair of Mulgrips. These suckers don’t slip, when you hit them with a hammer, their grip gets tighter around the nut.

Mulgrips or Spanner:

Spanner: A spanner is of a fixed width, fits the nut perfectly and turns the nut, but in some situations, when a lot of force is required, the spanner can slip off the nut. 

Mulgrips: Mulgrips on the other hand, are tightened around the nut, they work in such a way that when force is applied to unscrew the nut, they hold onto the nut tighter and tighter the more force is applied. 

My friends, faith in Jesus is like mulgrips, the more you hang-onto Jesus, the tighter your grip gets. The more pressure that’s applied to your Christian life, the more you’ll just hang onto Jesus Christ.

But some people are exercise faith like a spanner, in an experimental fashion they give Jesus a try, when things are going well they hang onto the Saviour, however, when things get tough or life gets hard, they soon loose their grip and slip-away, they fall-away from faith and trust in Jesus Christ. (Mark 4 Parable of the Sower). True and False Converts.

What kind of faith and trust have you got in Jesus? Spanner that can slip? Or Mulgrips that get tighter when things get tougher? A phrase from a hymn comes to mind now, “We have a hope that is Steadfast and certain”. It’s not a vain hope or a slippery hope we have in Jesus. We hold tighter to the Saviour when things get tougher.

LOVE: Love lifts:

Have you heard that before? “Love lifted me”. One of my favourite hymns.

When a newly-wed couple enter their home for the first time, the husband carries his wife over the threshold of the door. “Love lifted me”… I’ve seen some funny cartoons about that one. However, Jesus LOVE will carry you all the way over the threshold of death into the everlasting arms of the Saviour in Heaven.

Love lifts:

Faith falls / Grips.

BEAN BAG FAITH.

When you flop into a bean-bag it envelopes you. In my dream there was a big red heart-shaped bean bag, and I saw myself falling into it and it lifted me. It held my weight and surrounded me with LOVE. It’s an awesome feeling to be enveloped in a a heart-shaped bean-bag. It was at that point that I woke up this morning, I was somehow wrapped completely in my soft and warm duvet cover. Had to struggle to get out 🙂 But the dream stayed with me: I love it when you can remember dreams after waking up.  Oh WOWzer! “Love lifted me. Love lifted me.” I was singing and praising the Lord.

In faith when you fall into the arms of Jesus, He’s able to lift you up my friends. He’s about to envelope and hold you and surround you with His amazing LOVE. Faith falls in trust, love lifts and surrounds and sustains.

Faith falls in trust, love lifts and surrounds and sustains. 

“It’s not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit says the Lord.” Zechariah 4:6.

Zechariah 4:6 (NIV) So he said to me, “This is the word of the LORD to Zerubbabel: ‘Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit,’ says the LORD Almighty.

WOWzer! We don’t need to worry, He’ll never let go of us.

We don’t need to keep a hold tightly to the Saviour, because once we’ve trusted in Him, He’ll never let go of us. Some people imagine that it’s all up to their own strength and ability. However, He’ll hold onto you tighter than you ever could hold onto Him. Faith will grip hold of him, but if we fall into His loving arms, He’ll lift us up and sustain us all the way through life and carry us over death’s threshold into Heaven.

We take a step of faith, we risk everything on Jesus, but my friends, it’s not long before you’ll soon realise that it’s His LOVE that will sustain you. Faith is exercised and must be to get stronger, Jesus tells us He’ll also test our faith, just to make sure it’s genuine, but it’s His LOVE that will keep you, be sure of that dear brother and sister in Jesus.

I was walking with my granddaughter along the busy West Norwood Road in London. Cars fly along that road. I din’t realise, but every time we got to a road-junction, my grip on her little hand got tighter. She complained, “Papa, I know not to run into the road, don’t hold my hand so tight”.  It was my love for my granddaughter that did that. I wasn’t about to let her little hand slip from mine and her walk into the dangerous road.

No my friends, once Jesus has gotten a hold of you, He’ll NEVER let you go. He’s got a Divine pair of Mulgrips in His hands and He’s holding onto yours. Trust that once you TRUST HIM, He’ll NEVER LET YOU GO!

Jesus tells us that NOTHING can snatch us out of His or His Father’s Hands.

John 10:27-30 (NIV)
27  My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me.
28  I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no-one can snatch them out of my hand.
29  My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no-one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand.
30  I and the Father are one.”

My friends, exercise a kind of faith that is strong, like mulgrips instead of a spanner, so that you’ll not slip, but realise that once you grip hold of Jesus, Jesus will envelope you in His love and keep you all the way through this wonderful life and take you over the threshold of death into Heaven. It’s His LOVE that will keep you and He’ll NEVER let you go.

Are you trusting in Jesus today?

Try the Bean-Bag Test: Jump into His everlasting arms and His LOVE will envelope you.

Have an awesome Saturday with Jesus,

Don.

 

When ALL Seems LOST: Praise the LORD!

Love lifted me, rock, feet, firm place, stand, set free, freedom, rescue,

Daily Spirit & Word: 669:

When all seems lost, Praise the LORD!

LOVE LIFTED ME

Good morning my friends, last night we had our Governor’s meeting at St Luke’s School. I asked if I could begin with a short Bible reading and a prayer. The reading I choose was from Psalm 40. The psalmist reveals that he was in a muddy pit that was too slippery to escape from, so he cried out to the LORD.

 

Psalm 40:1-3 (NIV)
1  I waited patiently for the LORD;
he turned to me and heard my cry.
2  He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire;
he set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand.
3  He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God.
Many will see and fear and put their trust in the LORD.

When in an impossible position this psalm reveals some amazing principles that we can follow.

Firstly: Wait patiently for the LORD.

Now when we’re going through turmoil that really difficult, but it’s NOT impossible, even in life-threatening situations. However, when we’re in difficulty, hardship or just struggling with something, determine in your heart NOW before it happens, that when it does, you are going to WAIT upon the LORD.

Secondly: God WILL Respond.

“He turned to me and heard my cry”.

As soon as you acknowledge God in: Prayer, Praise, Worship: He inclines his head, his ear and his attention is focused upon you.

He hears your heart’s cry.

Paul & Silas:

We can see this played-out in the book of Acts when Paul and Silas are beaten and thrown into prison. They’d delivered a girl from a Demon that was possessing her, it enabled her to predict things for people, it became a famous business and once she was delivered, she could no longer make them any money. So before they could do any more damage, the whole town made a fuss about Paul and Silas and they were beaten severely and thrown into prison, guarded carefully and their feet in stocks to stop them escaping. What did Paul and Silas do? They praised the LORD!

Acts 16:16-19 (NIV)
16 Once when we were going to the place of prayer, we were met by a slave girl who had a spirit by which she predicted the future. She earned a great deal of money for her owners by fortune-telling.
17  This girl followed Paul and the rest of us, shouting, “These men are servants of the Most High God, who are telling you the way to be saved.”
18  She kept this up for many days. Finally Paul became so troubled that he turned round and said to the spirit, “In the name of Jesus Christ I command you to come out of her!” At that moment the spirit left her.
19  When the owners of the slave girl realised that their hope of making money was gone, they seized Paul and Silas and dragged them into the market-place to face the authorities.

Now look what happens to Paul and Silas in Prison:

Acts 16:22-33 (NIV)
22  The crowd joined in the attack against Paul and Silas, and the magistrates ordered them to be stripped and beaten.
23  After they had been severely flogged, they were thrown into prison, and the jailer was commanded to guard them carefully.
24  Upon receiving such orders, he put them in the inner cell and fastened their feet in the stocks.
25  About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening to them.
26  Suddenly there was such a violent earthquake that the foundations of the prison were shaken. At once all the prison doors flew open, and everybody’s chains came loose.
27  The jailer woke up, and when he saw the prison doors open, he drew his sword and was about to kill himself because he thought the prisoners had escaped.
28  But Paul shouted, “Don’t harm yourself! We are all here!”
29  The jailer called for lights, rushed in and fell trembling before Paul and Silas.
30  He then brought them out and asked, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?”
31  They replied, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved—you and your household.”
32  Then they spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all the others in his house.
33  At that hour of the night the jailer took them and washed their wounds; then immediately he and all his family were baptised.

When was the last time you praised God when things got really, really tough?
At midnight, with their feet in stocks, locked in prison; they prayed and praised the LORD!.

If you are in a slippery pit or stinking prison: Impossible places to get out of on your own.
What are you going to do? Pray, Praise, Wait Upon the LORD!…

  • The LORD will hear, the LORD will do something for you.
    If you’ve got a debt mountain that’s impossible to climb.
    If you’ve got a disease that can’t be beaten.
    If you’ve got family trouble, relationships that have broken down,
    If you’ve got a problem with a friends or colleagues at work,

Wait upon the LORD
Pray:
Praise the LORD.

No matter what your situation is, even now: Praise the LORD. Try it today.
Take a few moments to spend time with Jesus.
Wait upon Him. READ God’s WORD.
Fill your heart with good things.
Praise Him in song. Even if you are on your own.
Sing your little heart out to Jesus, even if it’s through tears.
He’ll hear your heart’s cry.

He’ll HEAR YOUR HEART’S CRY

You’ll see those chains fall off.
He’ll break those chains.
He’ll lift you up, out of the slimy pit you’ve fallen into.

In St Luke’s School we’ve seen a mighty turn around. We’re being brought out of the pit. A School that was not very good is becoming great. Thank you LORD for your deliverance. Amen!

He’s AWESOME!
Many will see and fear and put their trust in the LORD.
The jailer who locked Paul and Silas up, knew something weird had happened.
He began to fear and tremble: He asked Paul and Silas
“What must I do to be saved?”
People will see and fear and put their trust in the LORD when He delivers you from trouble.

So don’t forget to praise the LORD for the Deliverance that you are about to experience today.
Keep going for Jesus sake this weekend.
Praise HIM today.
Don.

 

The Reality of Hell

Isaiah's calling, coming judgement, unrepentant Israel

Daily Spirit & Word: 636. It’s God’s Call.

The Ministry of Reconciliation.

Having a deep care and concern for the Eternal Welfare of others.

My voice finally gave up last night, it had been cracking for a few days, but now it’s getting painful to speak. I’ve been told to stop. My wife thinks that’s brill, because now I can just sit and listen to her for ages. But I want to go back to the reading from yesterday in Isaiah 6, where we looked at the Trinity Revealed, but now I want to focus upon the calling of Isaiah and the dreadful message he was entrusted to deliver.

It’s weird, but my granddaughter asked me to play Johnny Cash’s “Ring of Fire” the other day. I played it for them. Then a few minutes later I got into the car to go to a church meeting, guess what was playing on the car radio? “I fell in to a burning ring of fire…”

Isaiah 6:1-13
1 In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord seated on a throne, high and exalted, and the train of his robe filled the temple.
2  Above him were seraphs, each with six wings: With two wings they covered their faces, with two they covered their feet, and with two they were flying.
3  And they were calling to one another: “Holy, holy, holy is the LORD Almighty; the whole earth is full of his glory.”
4  At the sound of their voices the doorposts and thresholds shook and the temple was filled with smoke.
5  “Woe to me!” I cried. “I am ruined! For I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have seen the King, the LORD Almighty.”
6  Then one of the seraphs flew to me with a live coal in his hand, which he had taken with tongs from the altar.
7  With it he touched my mouth and said, “See, this has touched your lips; your guilt is taken away and your sin atoned for.”
8  Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?” And I said, “Here am I. Send me!”
9  He said, “Go and tell this people: ” ‘Be ever hearing, but never understanding; be ever seeing, but never perceiving.’
10  Make the heart of this people calloused; make their ears dull and close their eyes. Otherwise they might see with their eyes, hear with their ears, understand with their hearts, and turn and be healed.”
11  Then I said, “For how long, O Lord?” And he answered: “Until the cities lie ruined and without inhabitant, until the houses are left deserted and the fields ruined and ravaged,
12  until the LORD has sent everyone far away and the land is utterly forsaken.
13  And though a tenth remains in the land, it will again be laid waste. But as the terebinth and oak leave stumps when they are cut down, so the holy seed will be the stump in the land.”

Isaiah’s Calling Came From God: “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?”

BTW (Who is the “US” in verse 8 above? Answer: see Trinity yesterday’s message)

Have you ever heard someone declare, “I’ve had a call to the Ministry” or “I’ve got my calling”…

We could be left with the impression it’s as if the “calling” is something that belongs to them. However, if we’ve been called by the LORD to do something, then we should always be aware, as Jesus was, as Isaiah was and so many other Biblical Characters were, that it is God’s CALL. It’s HIS from start to finish. Give glory to Him always.

Note: Isaiah Is Convicted of his sinfulness: 

Verse 5 “”Woe to me!” I cried. “I am ruined! For I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have seen the King, the LORD Almighty.””

Isaiah knew enough about the LORD God Almighty, that if a person saw God that person would die, because of His sinfulness. Exodus 33:20. Moses could see God’s glory and God’s back, but he couldn’t look into God’s face and live.

NOTE: The Altar in Heaven: The Altar of Incense: Live coals were taken into the Holy of Holies to burn incense before the Lord.

The Altar is a place of sacrifice: So we must ask the question, what sacrifice had been made in Heaven that could atone for Isaiah’s sins? Who or what died in Heaven? It might just possibly be an indication or prophetic look at God’s own sacrifice for the sins of all mankind: He gave His own beloved Son to die for everyone’s sins.

The Severity Of Isaiah’s Mission and Message:

Isaiah must have experienced an immediate inner change when he had the vision of God in Heaven and when the Angel took the coal from the fire on the Altar and touched his mouth. When he hears the invitation of God, he volunteers immediately to go and serve (6:8). God’s response is also immediate. Note that God does not provide many specific details of Isaiah’s ministry, but the severity of his mission is clear. He is being sent to people who will not listen or respond to him, yet he is to continue his work until their nation is destroyed. God’s just judgement is imminent and it’s coming upon Israel.

NOTE: The Live Coal: Fear of Fire.

When I was a boy growing up in Edinburgh in the 1960’s we had a coal fire. From a very young age I’d watch my father set the fire and help him too. He’d get the crunched-up paper, the sticks, the coal and match to set it ablaze. Sometimes he’d hold a sheet in front of the fire to cause a draught in at the bottom, which speeded up the process of getting the fire going. Then after a while, the coals in the fire would be glowing bright red. What a fire. My dad said to me, “Don’t ever touch a fire, you see those red coals, DON’T EVER TOUCH A RED COAL”. I said, “Why dad, they look like lovely jewels?” He explained, “Because they will hurt you so much and you’ll be in agony. You’ll be crying louder than you’ve ever cried. Remember how much your knee hurt when you came off your bike? This will hurt so much more than that”. I’m so grateful that my dad warned me of the dangers of fire. He put the FEAR of FIRE in me. I didn’t hate my dad when He told me that the FIRE AND THE COALS would hurt me, I was only left with the impression that my dad loved me and didn’t want me to get hurt.

Similarly; When an Evangelist warns of THE FIRES OF HELL he’s only showing how much he loves you. Also that God loves you and doesn’t want anyone to perish in Hell. But burning hell fire is real and it’s reserved for everyone, EVERYONE, who dies in their sinful condition: Why? Because NO ONE CAN SEE GOD and LIVE. My friends, God has warned us in many ways about the dangers of sin and the consequences of sin: Jesus warned us so many times in the Gospels. Hell is real: It God’s punishment for sin, but He doesn’t want to have to send anyone there, but He will. Because of His justice, sin must be paid for.

Romans 6:23 “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.”

God wants to GIVE YOU ETERNAL LIFE so that you can live forever. 

2 Peter 3:7-9 Warning & Yearning.
7  By the same word the present heavens and earth are reserved for fire, being kept for the day of judgment and destruction of ungodly men. 8  But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day. 9  The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.

We hear from Peter about God’s Patience: Not wanting anyone to perish. He’s extending His Divine offer of Grace, Mercy and Forgiveness for as long as we live: However, the moment we die, the time for God’s GRACE has ended. There’s no chance after death for; mercy, repentance, forgiveness.

 NOTE: Jesus Doctrine of Hell: His teaching (that’s what doctrine means).

In Luke’s Gospel we’re given a picture from Jesus of what HELL is going to be like, and it’s NOT a place that you’d want anyone, even your worst enemy, to end up in.

Luke 16:19-31
19  “There was a rich man who was dressed in purple and fine linen and lived in luxury every day.
20  At his gate was laid a beggar named Lazarus, covered with sores
21  and longing to eat what fell from the rich man’s table. Even the dogs came and licked his sores.
22  “The time came when the beggar died and the angels carried him to Abraham’s side. The rich man also died and was buried.
23  In hell (Hades), where he was in torment, he looked up and saw Abraham far away, with Lazarus by his side.
24  So he called to him, ‘Father Abraham, have pity on me and send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue, because I am in agony in this fire.’
25  “But Abraham replied, ‘Son, remember that in your lifetime you received your good things, while Lazarus received bad things, but now he is comforted here and you are in agony.
26  And besides all this, between us and you a great chasm has been fixed, so that those who want to go from here to you cannot, nor can anyone cross over from there to us.’
27  “He answered, ‘Then I beg you, father, send Lazarus to my father’s house,
28  for I have five brothers. Let him warn them, so that they will not also come to this place of torment.’
29  “Abraham replied, ‘They have Moses and the Prophets; let them listen to them.’
30  ” ‘No, father Abraham,’ he said, ‘but if someone from the dead goes to them, they will repent.’
31  “He said to him, ‘If they do not listen to Moses and the Prophets, they will not be convinced even if someone rises from the dead.’ “

The Rich Man: In Hell “I am in agony in this fire”.

  • NO WAY OUT: Verse 26: “between us and you a great chasm has been FIXED … nor can anyone cross over from there to us”
  • NO WAY IN: Verse 26: “So that those who want to go from here to you cannot”

Hell is a FIXED State for anyone, everyone, who dies in their sins.

I was at the movies a while ago and noted throughout the movie: EXIT signs, they were bright and clear in the darkness as the movie played. If a fire broke out in the Cinema I’d know how to get out of the fire.

There’s no way out of HELL. No EXIT: It’s as if the EXIT sign has been removed from Hell. (A great chasm has been FIXED).

THE DESIRE TO WARN OTHERS.

Once the Rich man realised his eternal condition, his heart wanted to WARN others, especially his family members.

“I beg you, father, send Lazarus to my father’s house, for I have five brothers. Let him warn them, so that they will NOT also come to this place of torment”…

Once Isaiah was “cleansed of his sins” his desire was to be the one that God would send with His message.

Isaiah, was given a message from God to deliver. It was a WARNING of impending JUDGEMENT. He was to deliver it to a people that would not listen and would not turn to the LORD.

Christians, have been ENTRUSTED BY GOD with the same kind of message: REPENT OR PERISH. TURN OR BURN. THE WAGES OF SIN IS DEATH. HELL AWAITS THE ONE WHO HAS SINNED. Thankfully many do heed the warning and turn to the LORD in Repentance.

It’s not a nice message to deliver and many shrink from the calling. It’s such a horrific message, that many attempts have been made over two thousand years to WATER IT DOWN (Quench the fire a bit). It’s like asking Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water to cool my tongue. The Church has, instead of warning people, emphasised the benefits of heaven. But unless people KNOW why they need Heaven, they are unlikely to truly REPENT OF THEIR SINS.

Unless or until a person comes to Christ, then Hell awaits every sinful soul.

Jesus warned in His parable: “If they won’t listen to Moses or the Prophets (e.g. the Teaching in God’s Word about God’s Judgement to come), then they wouldn’t listen, even if someone came back to life from the dead to warn them.”

Jesus DID come back from the DEAD: People still won’t listen. However, we’ve been entrusted with God’s message of RECONCILIATION. (2 Corinthians 5:11-21). He wants every believer in Jesus who’s been born of His Spirit to be a PROPHET to the World, God’s Ambassadors who’ll deliver His message of Good News: That no one needs to perish in Hell forever.

2 Corinthians 5:11, 17-21. The Ministry of Reconciliation.
11 Since, then, we know what it is to fear the Lord, we try to persuade men … 17  Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!
18  All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: 19  that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. 20  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.
21  God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.

GOD’S GREAT LOVE: Just as my father, my dad, warned me about the burning coals in the fire when I was a boy in Scotland, so the Church has been entrusted to warn the world about God’s coming day of judgement and punishment in Hell for sin. But I KNEW it was because of my dad’s LOVE that he warned me. It’s because of God’s GREAT LOVE that He’s entrusted us with His message and He’s given us this same calling as Isaiah:

Isaiah 6:8  “Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?” And I said, “Here am I. Send me!””

He didn’t know what the message was until he responded to the call.

We know the message, we know the call, we’ve been commanded to go into all the world and deliver God’s message of reconciliation.

Will you Go for God into the world today and deliver His LOVING HEART: His message of reconciliation. Will you WARN people that if we touch the fire it will hurt us? If you’ll do that to warn your own children and friends about earthly fire, surely we should be just as concerned about the Eternal Welfare of everyone on the earth today as well. The Day of Judgement will come, Jesus is coming back soon, let’s save as many as we can. You know BIBLE means; Basic, Instructions, Before, Leaving, Earth. Let’s get God’s message out into all the world, so that everyone has an opportunity to turn in faith and repentance and avoids the punishment of Hell.

Amen!

Don.

 

Wondering Why?

War, Famine, Refugees, Injustice, Pain, Hurt, Jesus, Hope, Faith and LOVE

Daily Spirit & Word: 613: Wondering Why?

“He WILL Wipe Away EVERY Tear From Their Eyes”

Good morning everyone, last night was the first real cold evening of the year, with a cold wind, slight drizzle and brooding sky we ventured out to share the Good News on the Streets. Understandably we got into very few lengthy conversations with people, but handed out more tracts than we’ve ever done. However, Sherrie was the one last night who did manage to have a long conversation with a woman who attended the local Roman Catholic church for over 30 years. She was a devout Catholic, but didn’t know the Bible at all, had no assurance of her Salvation, and just trusted in her ‘religion’ to save her. She didn’t know Jesus as Lord or Saviour. It’s such a shame that a person can be fooled into thinking that being ‘religious’ will save them on the day of judgement. Sherrie gently shared the Good News and the woman, who was in a rush to get home initially, stopped for over 20 mins chatting, listening and asking questions.

One thing the Catholic woman said was, “Nobody Knows what Heaven is like, because no one has come back to tell us”.

However, we do have one who came down from Heaven to tell us, not so much what it is like, but to get ready and get right so that we will be able to get into Heaven when we die. Sherrie unpacked that TRUTH for the woman last night.

  • We do not know, but God has promised that one day we will know EVERYTHING.
  • We don’t know why there is so much suffering and harsh treatment of innocent people.
  • We don’t know why there are dictators who care little about their own citizens.
  • We don’t know why men will scheme and go to war to kill thousands with bombs and bullets.
  • We don’t know why the good people suffer, whilst evil people seem to prosper.

However, we do know that one day we will KNOW EVERYTHING.

It’s just that the LORD wants us to trust Him, even though we don’t know everything now.

Not knowing why God allows these things does not mean that He’s lost control or is powerless to do something about it. He does in fact, but we can’t often see the forest for the trees. When we look at the reverse side of a tapestry it just looks like a complete mess, but turn it over and we observe the magnificent beauty of delicately crafted and skilful needlework, but it’s not until we take a few steps back that we see the whole picture and it’s AWESOME. When we get to Heaven, we’re going to see and know what they Lord has been doing all along in Human history. He will be glorified: and we will praise Him for His magnificent beauty of holiness.

When Job had lost everything he had, except his own life, he just knelt down and worshipped the Lord. He declared,

Job 1:18-22
18  While he was still speaking, yet another messenger came and said, “Your sons and daughters were feasting and drinking wine at the oldest brother’s house, 19  when suddenly a mighty wind swept in from the desert and struck the four corners of the house. It collapsed on them and they are dead, and I am the only one who has escaped to tell you!”
20  At this, Job got up and tore his robe and shaved his head. Then he fell to the ground in worship 21  and said: “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I shall depart. The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away; may the name of the LORD be praised.” 22  In all this, Job did not sin by charging God with wrongdoing.

My friends, we don’t KNOW it all just now in this life, but we still worship, trust and praise the LORD. We are not overjoyed about the evil that’s happening, but we can be at PEACE through everything that comes upon us and the people that we love in this world.

1 Corinthians 13:12-13
12  Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known. 13  And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.

That’s why there are no real Atheists, because they don’t KNOW everything, to say that there is definitely no God who Created everything is logically flawed, to be able to say that with conviction, you’d have to know everything. But we don’t even know very much about the Earth, not really, we’re just sitting on the top of an iceberg of understanding, we can’t even see what’s beneath the surface, yet. In some place or space in the universe that we don’t know, is there room for the God who could have made it all? Of course there is, because He did: It may seem disorderly and random, but just take a look through the microscope and you’ll observe wonders to behold; order and structure and amazing beauty. You’ll see the fingerprints of God and marvel at the Creative genius behind it all.

We don’t know WHY He allows so much evil to persist upon the earth between human beings, but we can still have; faith, hope and love through life: When we get to the Lord’s side, then we will know fully, even as we are fully known by the Lord.

In the meantime, He’s given us work to do for His Kingdom and Glory: He wants us all to be on His rescue mission, to save as many souls as we can for His Heaven. Let’s just keep at it, for when one soul is saved and delivered from the slavery of sin to the freedom of the Saints, they too will be about the Lord’s work and will be filled with the HOPE of Heaven in their hearts.

There is also so much good we can do to alleviate the suffering and injustice in this world too: We can be an influence for good and for peace. Think about the STREET CHILDREN around the world, they live in constant fear, suffer hunger and incredible injustice. The authorities seem to hate them and they are living with the dread of something happening to them at the hands of evil men. Think about places upon the earth when people are fleeing war or famine or disaster; be filled afresh with God’s compassion and get involved. We can all do something, even if it’s something small, it all helps to spread the good and the LOVE of God.

  • We can pray and seek God’s will to be done on earth as it is in Heaven. That’s what Jesus told us to pray for.
  • We can pray and ask for daily bread, not just for ourselves, but for those who don’t have any.
  • We can pray and be part of God’s Healing for people; when you pray and lay your hands upon people in the power of God’s Holy Spirit, miracles can and still do happen for people who don’t even know the Lord yet.

When you weep at the injustice and brutality of evil regimes upon the earth, bring those tears to God and ask for Him to bring His swift justice for the poor and the weak and those who can’t speak for themselves. The Israelites were in bondage in Egypt for over 200 years, then the Lord heard their cries and brought the Ten Plagues upon Egypt. He does things in His own time, but we can and should be crying out to Him. Perhaps He’s just waiting for your prayers today and then He’ll move???? You know my friends, God cares far more about injustice than we do. He loves far more than we do. He is in control of the situation and will move in His own good time: Watch and Pray!

In the meantime we have God’s PROMISES:

Revelation 21:3-8
3  And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God.
4  He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”
5  He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!” Then he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.”
6  He said to me: “It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To him who is thirsty I will give to drink without cost from the spring of the water of life.
7  He who overcomes will inherit all this, and I will be his God and he will be my son.
8  But the cowardly, the unbelieving, the vile, the murderers, the sexually immoral, those who practise magic arts, the idolaters and all liars—their place will be in the fiery lake of burning sulphur. This is the second death.”

Have an awesome Thursday with Jesus.

Stay close, worship Him no matter what you are feeling like today.

Don.

 

The Untouchables

Jesus touches the untouchables and makes them clean

Daily Spirit & Word: 591: The Untouchables.

Would You Touch A Leper?

Good morning my friends, in our Church we’re about to begin a new preaching / teaching series on the Gospel of Mark. I’m getting ready and have been reading it through again. I was touched by my King Jesus today, because He’s willing and ready to touch everybody.

Leprosy is a disease: It has many forms, but in it’s worst form it is contagious, it spreads and isolates people.

In the time of Jesus they didn’t differentiate between forms of leprosy they treated everyone who contracted the disease the same; they isolated them and made certain they kept their distance from uncontaminated people.

Bells were placed around their necks and they were to shout a warning when approached by someone “Unclean, Unclean” “Leprosy” or “Leper coming through”… Leviticus 13:45-46  “The person with such an infectious disease must wear torn clothes, let his hair be unkempt, cover the lower part of his face and cry out, ‘Unclean! Unclean!’ 46  As long as he has the infection he remains unclean. He must live alone; he must live outside the camp.”

Would you touch a Leper? Jesus did!

Mark 1:40-45 A man with leprosy came to him and begged him on his knees, “If you are willing, you can make me clean.”
41  Filled with compassion, Jesus reached out his hand and touched the man. “I am willing,” he said. “Be clean!”
42  Immediately the leprosy left him and he was cured.
43  Jesus sent him away at once with a strong warning:
44  “See that you don’t tell this to anyone. But go, show yourself to the priest and offer the sacrifices that Moses commanded for your cleansing, as a testimony to them.”
45  Instead he went out and began to talk freely, spreading the news. As a result, Jesus could no longer enter a town openly but stayed outside in lonely places. Yet the people still came to him from everywhere.

 

“I AM Willing”

“If You Are Willing?” the Leper pleaded with Jesus and our Lord Jesus said, “I AM willing”

My friends, this touch of the untouchable is astonishing, because everybody who touches a leper becomes ritually unclean in Jesus day. They were considered to be contaminated. However, the man gets cured and runs around telling everybody about his healing. It becomes impossible for Jesus to move around freely. So instead of the Leper being isolated, as required by the Law of Moses, in lonely places, it’s our LORD who’s forced to go, He had to stay outside the towns and cities as a result of touching that Leper, but it wasn’t because Jesus was infected, but because everyone wanted to touch or be touched by the Saviour.

Knowing that Jesus was willing to touch an untouchable man gave EVERYBODY confidence that this man Jesus would also be likely to be willing to touch them and heal them too.

My friends, Jesus is still willing to touch the untouchable, the unclean, the sinner. He’s also waiting to touch your heart too. He’s longong for you to shout out to Him, “Lord if you are willing, you can make me clean”. He IS WILLING.

No wonder Jesus wanted to move on, because He didn’t care about being popular or famous, Jesus came with a Mission and a Message, not just to heal. He understood the shallowness of people who’d come just for what they wanted. They were not coming to hear Jesus words or his message, but to feel His touch. They knew that just one touch from this man changes everything.

I love that worship song; “Just ONE touch of the King changes everything”

 

How different we are to that Leper:

  • He was commanded by Jesus to “Keep quiet about his healing”. Instead he told EVERYBODY.
  • We are commanded to tell everyone the Good News of Jesus: Instead we keep quiet and don’t tell ANYBODY.

 

WHEN THE LEPER SPREADS THE GOOD NEWS:

People came from everywhere to be touched by Jesus.

Although Sin is just like Leprosy; it contaminates deeper than the surface of the skin, it spreads, it affects your life by isolating you from God, from fellowship and ultimately from Heaven. Sin cuts us off from God.

Isaiah 59:2 (NLT) “It’s your sins that have cut you off from God. Because of your sins, he has turned away and will not listen anymore.”

But Jesus died so that we could all be healed from the disease of sin, and from the effects of sin. Jesus shed His blood upon the Cross so that we could to be set free from God’s wrath and anger and ultimately from His punishment for our sins, when we repent and trust Jesus as Lord and Saviour, then we’re set-free from sin to follow Jesus commands and teachings. He is willing to touch the untouchables today.

Have an awesome day, don’t be afraid to touch someone for Jesus today and be willing (as Jesus was) to be used by the Lord to reach out in love and touch some precious souls for Jesus. No matter who you may think is untouchable, they are all precious to the Lord Jesus, because Jesus gave His life for EVERYONE.

I’m praying that you’ll have a lovely day, learning to love like Jesus and touch your lepers’ hearts.

Don.