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Lot’s Disobedient Wife

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Lot’s wife personifies the classic wisdom “for where your treasure is, there will your heart be also” (Matthew 6:21). Jesus used her as an example of someone who started the right way, but looked back, because she was not completely willing to give up her old ways to follow God in obedience – Luke 17:31-33 “Even thus shall it be in the day when the Son of man is revealed. In that day, he which shall be upon the housetop, and his stuff in the house, let him not come down to take it away: and he that is in the field, let him likewise not return back. Remember Lot’s wife. Whosoever shall seek to save his life shall lose it; and whosoever shall lose his life shall preserve it.”

Okay, we read in God’s Word that Lot was a rich and very influential man, but nowhere does it say much about his wife. We see no mention of her name, nor her family or even her race. However, it is indicated that she was a worldly, materialistic woman. She definitely failed in the spiritual nurturing of her children – her daughters married men of Sodom, and then committed incest with their own father – Genesis 19:30-35 “And Lot went up out of Zoar, and dwelt in the mountain, and his two daughters with him; for he feared to dwell in Zoar: and he dwelt in a cave, he and his two daughters. And the firstborn said unto the younger, Our father is old, and there is not a man in the earth to come in unto us after the manner of all the earth: Come, let us make our father drink wine, and we will lie with him, that we may preserve seed of our father. And they made their father drink wine that night: and the firstborn went in, and lay with her father; and he perceived not when she lay down, nor when she arose. And it came to pass on the morrow, that the firstborn said unto the younger, Behold, I lay yesternight with my father: let us make him drink wine this night also; and go thou in, and lie with him, that we may preserve seed of our father. And they made their father drink wine that night also: and the younger arose, and lay with him; and he perceived not when she lay down, nor when she arose.”

This also speaks to us about the effects of alcohol on our minds, and why God’s Word warns us against even looking at it – Proverbs 23:29-35 “Who hath woe? who hath sorrow? who hath contentions? who hath babbling? who hath wounds without cause? who hath redness of eyes? They that tarry long at the wine; they that go to seek mixed wine. LOOK NOT thou upon the wine when it is red, when it giveth his colour in the cup, when it moveth itself aright. At the last it biteth like a serpent, and stingeth like an adder. Thine eyes shall behold strange women, and thine heart shall utter perverse things. Yea, thou shalt be as he that lieth down in the midst of the sea, or as he that lieth upon the top of a mast. They have stricken me, shalt thou say, and I was not sick; they have beaten me, and I felt it not: when shall I awake? I will seek it yet again.”

SIDE NOTE: Way too many Christians fail to understand that most places the Bible mentions wine, like when Jesus turned water into wine, that it is not speaking of alcohol. This Scripture in Proverbs explains about the wine that has turned to alcohol and why we are to not even look upon it. What Jesus made for the wedding was grape juice. Jesus is pure and holy, He would never make something that is unholy and corrupts men’s minds. When grape juice turns to alcohol, it becomes something rotten. Wine in the Bible when used in the right sense speaks of “the pure blood of the grape.” Our Saviour who, throughout the Bible, urges people not to drink would certainly not create something to contradict His own word and to ruin the men He came to save! I spent many years of my life letting the enemy deceive me into thinking that because the Bible says not to be ‘drunk’ with wine, it was okay in moderation. Jesus has revealed His truth to me that even in moderation, it is not what He and His Word are telling us at all. He tells us to be filled with His Holy Spirit. If we consume even one sip of alcohol, or any substance that affects our minds, it grieves the Holy Spirit to the point that we are not Spirit-filled. He is there, but he is numbed. And I have learned by experience that the joy that comes with being Spirit-filled far surpasses any temporary high that this sinful world has to offer. AND, there is no convicting guilt!

Lot’s wife did not have to die. She was offered a choice–obedience and life or disobedience and death in pursuit of the pleasures of the world. We do not know where Lot met his wife, nor when they were married, but we do know that they had two daughters (Genesis 19:16). The kidnapping of Lot and his family (Genesis 14) would have included his wife, and she would have been among the company that was rescued by Abraham since Abraham “brought again his brother Lot, and his goods, and the women also, and the people” (Genesis 14:16) This means that she may well have heard Melchizedek’s witness for God (Genesis 14:19, 20). In other words, she was well aware of the Lord and His dealings with Abraham. BUT the lifestyle of Sodom had a strong hold on her.

Sodom was a sophisticated town, offering a wide variety of cultural opportunities. The immorality had degenerated to the lowest point of sexual perversion so much that our term “sodomy” comes from the name of this city. (Today, Sodomites have twisted and changed the word to describe their lifestyle as gay and homosexual, so in their minds it does not sound so bad, and more people will accept their sin.)

Lot, though called a “righteous man,” seemed also to be entangled in the grip of Sodom’s influence – 2 Peter 2:7, 8 – “And delivered just Lot, vexed with the filthy conversation of the wicked: (For that righteous man dwelling among them, in seeing and hearing, vexed his righteous soul from day to day with their unlawful deeds;)”

Unfortunately, Lot chose to raise his family in Sodom, even though it’s reputation for depravity was well known. Still, the Lord sent messengers to rescue this family from their own destructive choices.

God wanted to save Lot’s wife. He sent angels to warn, to escort, and finally they had to physically pull her out of harm’s way. Whether she understood exactly what would happen is uncertain, but being escorted by angels in this fashion surely had to alert her to something supernatural.

The destruction most likely began with a violent earthquake, which set fire to the gases and sulphur. Firebrands were falling around her. Though she had followed her husband into the wilderness, she had the same problem the Israelites did in the wilderness as they “in their hearts turned back again into Egypt” (Acts 7:39). Just like the Israelites, she was destroyed. But she did not have to be.

This can be an example to us that once we are saved, we must never let ourselves look back and yearn for Egypt (our past sinful ways). We must stay the course until we see Him face to face!

 
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Posted by on September 10, 2018 in God's Truth, Uncategorized

 

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Tidbits from the Book of James-Part 1

The Epistle of James always helps remind me of many of God’s wonderful guidelines on how to live Godly in this sinful world. These tidbits can bring needed, though uncomfortable, conviction to the believer’s heart. That’s why some tend to shy away from it. I did that for a time myself. Each time I read this Book, God does a little something different in my heart. I will attempt, over the next however long the Spirit leads, to share what He shows me.

First, let us consider and understand who James was. He was the half-brother of Jesus and he did not accept Christ as Saviour until after Jesus rose again. (I have often considered the heartache Jesus must have felt when He began His ministry and many of His family members disowned Him for His claims of Christ-hood. But that is for another time.) James did become an elder of the church in Jerusalem and he was respected as a leader among and Council member of the early churches in Jerusalem – Acts 15:6-21. James may possibly be the first New Testament book to be written.

This Epistle offers words of encouragement to us as we try to be firm in our Christian faith while we are persecuted for it. He urges us to focus on the victory that we will attain through what Jesus did. James also provides practical advice to unite all believers so that our fellowship will not be threatened by a lack of love, un-christlike speech, and bitter attitudes.

James teaches us to develop our faith by seeking wisdom from God. He reminds us that we have a choice: we can either give in to sin and suffer tragic consequences, or we can stand firm and therefore experience maturity of our faith by accepting the trials that will inevitably come. He maintains that our trials will produce patience and they will ultimately perfect and complete us as Christians. The prevalent theme of James is how to develop an enduring faith.

Today we will look at James 1:1-8

James 1:1-8

1 James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad, greeting. (James could have given himself more credit by making sure we know that he is Jesus’ brother here, or he could have even boasted about his leadership in the reputable Jerusalem church. Instead, he proudly referred to himself as a “servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ.” Servant here means “bondservant,” like slaves who had been released from their obligation, but willingly remain servants to their masters out of respect for them. Likewise, James gladly offered his life to be bound to serving God, who gave him his freedom. He expressed his willingness to obey, laid aside his own rights to follow God’s will, and he pledged his loyalty to the Lord regardless of personal loss, humiliation, or danger.)

2 My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; (Woah, hold on there you say! Count it all joy?! Yes, we are to count it all joy when several trials and temptations come, and sometimes several of them come at once. Remember when Paul and Silas were beaten and cast into stocks in the inner prison? What did they do? They sang praises to God and were set free. I have experienced the release and help that Jesus gives when we praise Him during tough times. There is nothing like to to build your faith.)

3 Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. (So all Christians learn as we grow that trials usually come so as to build our character and patience. This is never fun to experience, but if we praise God during the trials and ask Him what He is trying to teach us, He gives us the grace we need to grow as we move through them. I used to pray, God please give me patience. And then I would freak out because almost immediately something would happen that I really did not like, and as I whined about it to a more mature Christian, I would be reminded that every time we ask for patience we can expect a trial to develop that patience in us. Now I ask for grace as He teaches me the patience I still need.)

4 But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing. (As Christ-like women, we come to realize that we all have the potential and that it is our God-given destiny to continually be maturing in our walk with our Lord. This is a goal that only God can help us reach.)

5 If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him. (I am also understanding more the importance of growing in Godly wisdom. And all I have to do is ask for it. I used to think that the Scripture that says to ask and you shall receive was about asking for things and happiness, etc., but I have come to understand that while we do ask for those things, it is also speaking of wisdom in dealing with things that come up throughout our daily lives, as well as sharing the Lord with others and live out our faith.)

6 But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed.

7 For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord. (When we ask, we are to ask believing, like it is already happening. Oh how many times do I ask the Lord for answers in fervent prayer and then take it back and fret about it and get myself into a tizzy. How silly that is. If I ask something of the Lord, I need to trust Him with it without doubt; if I take it back and start fretting about it then I am not trusting Him.)

8 A double minded man is unstable in all his ways. (Double-minded=wavering in mind : undecided, vacillating. It is a human weakness and a characteristic of the hypocrite. One might say one thing while acting completely opposite, making one “unstable in all his ways.” God has no use for a double-minded person. Jesus spoke of double minded behaviour in Matthew 6:24 “No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.” We are to know what we believe and why we believe it, hopefully because God says it in His Word, and we are to stand firm in those Godly beliefs, not wavering.)

 
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Posted by on April 19, 2018 in God's Truth

 

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Beware of False Prophets-Know God’s True Word

Do Not Be Deceived

I am reading in Matthew 24 and 25 the past few days. I love the promise Jesus gives us in Chapter 24:22 “And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect’s sake those days shall be shortened.” We can easily find, because the internet is so full of anything you can imagine and find, false doctrines being pushed that the Rapture will happen after the Great Tribulation. I just have to shake my head and laugh at such foolishness. They are in essence calling Jesus a liar. Then look at what Matthew 24:31 says, “And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.” The angels shall gather God’s elect/children/saints from one end of heaven to the other! How did they get there? Why, by the Rapture or the catching up together to meet Jesus in the air, 1 Thessalonians 4:15-18 “For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. Wherefore comfort one another with these words.” Yes, we ought to be comforted and comfort others with these true Scriptures of God’s Word, instead of twisting them into deceitful lies.

And immediately after Jesus says that His elect will be spared, he tells them of signs to watch for, verses 23-27 “Then if any man shall say unto you, Lo, here is Christ, or there; believe it not. For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect. Behold, I have told you before. Wherefore if they shall say unto you, Behold, he is in the desert; go not forth: behold, he is in the secret chambers; believe it not. For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.”

I notice every time there is an eclipse or a super moon, etc. the heretics come out of the woodwork trying to deceive people more, and unfortunately, even some of His elect are falling for it. They like to quote the Scriptures that say “the sun will be darkened and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken,” to try and get people to believe that we are now in the Great Tribulation. We are not because God’s Spirit in His children is still here. But take note of the words they leave out that come right before that verse, Matthew 24:29 “Immediately after the tribulation of those days…” These things are to happen AFTER the tribulation.

If you believe that God’s Spirit through His church has already been taken from this earth, you are sadly deceived as well. Believe you me, things are going to be horribly abominable and sinful after God’s Spirit is removed from this earth. This earth will no longer have God’s fervent praying children crying out for mercy for mankind. Those left behind will go through such awful times that this world has never seen because our enemy and God’s enemy will have full control of this world. Just as hell was not created for man but for satan, the tribulation is not meant for God’s saints but for those who chose to reject Christ as God’s Son and the Saviour of this world. The tribulation is meant to try and change those hardened hearts to see that God is God and Jesus is His Son and Jesus came to save man from hell. And some will turn and accept Jesus as Saviour because of those horrible things to come. How sad that they will not do it now.

 
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Posted by on March 5, 2018 in God's Truth

 

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Holy Unto God

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What does God’s Word say about being Holy? First let us look at how God is Holy. 1 John 1:5 “This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.” There is no sin in God at all. He is totally separate from anything evil. For us to have fellowship with Him, we must strive to be Holy. When we live in sin, we break fellowship with Him. Understand that we cannot be perfect as He is until we go to be with Him. But we must, with all our hearts, live each day trying to live separate from sin so that we may have fellowship with God. My devotion this morning touched on daily cleansing ourselves of sin so that we may have fellowship with God. The cleansing comes from examining myself each day and confessing and repenting of my sins, as well as asking God to show me of any un-confessed sin that I need to bring before Him. Since I am born with a sinful, fleshly nature, I am bound to commit some sin every day of my life. So, I need a daily cleansing. This is part of trying to be holy unto God.

1 Peter 1:16 “Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.” Quotes Leviticus 19:2 “Speak unto all the congregation of the children of Israel, and say unto them, Ye shall be holy: for I the LORD your God am holy.” We see that because God is holy, He calls us to be holy. If we are living under the influence of this world, we are apart from God and cannot be holy. The only way we can live holy unto God is by the power of His Holy Spirit. Therefore, we must first be saved by the blood of Jesus and filled with His Spirit to be able to even try to live a holy life. God reveals any un-confessed sin in our lives through His Holy Spirit. If we try to just “be good people” we are doing things on our own. Being good does not get us to Heaven. John 14:6 “Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”

Once we are saved, then the Holy Spirit’s power aids us in living holy or righteously for God. 1 Peter 1:14-16 “As obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance: But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; (not just in our speech, but in how we live our lives) Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.” We can be holy by being obedient to God in ALL areas of our lives. To be able to obey God, we must KNOW God – Psalm 119:9-12 “Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? by taking heed thereto according to thy word. With my whole heart have I sought thee: O let me not wander from thy commandments. Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee. Blessed art thou, O LORD: teach me thy statutes.” To know God’s Word, is to know God.

If we are truly spending time with our Lord each day and in His Word and hiding it in our hearts, it will show outwardly and some in this world will see and possibly come to know Him too. Our speech will change, our faces will probably smile more because our hearts are smiling more. Our dress when we come into His house will change as well. When we first start walking with the Lord, we may not understand that how we dress in His house and in His Service reflects where we are in our walk with Him. It is the Holy Spirit’s job to convict a child of God of things in our outward appearance as to where we are in our holiness. If we are dressing like we are going to a back yard B-B-Q instead of wearing our best to His house, we still need work in our hearts. Only the Holy Spirit can do that. That is why we pray for each other in these areas. As we grow closer to Him, we understand that, and are happy to show Him respect by giving Him our best when we come to His house, or when we serve Him. That comes with time. I have always pondered how some can have no problem whatsoever dressing nice and respectful for a friend’s wedding, for example, but coming to the house of our Holy God Jehovah in disrespect and immodesty. But, that is something I leave to the Lord. It is my responsibility to act according to God’s direction and set an holy example for Him. I have to remind myself that children are not being taught, as I was, that when we come into God’s house, we show Him respect, by dressing in our best.

Psalms 99

1 The LORD reigneth; let the people tremble: he sitteth between the cherubims; let the earth be moved.

2 The LORD is great in Zion; and he is high above all the people.

3 Let them praise thy great and terrible name; for it is holy.

4 The king’s strength also loveth judgment; thou dost establish equity, thou executest judgment and righteousness in Jacob.

5 Exalt ye the LORD our God, and worship at his footstool; for he is holy.

6 Moses and Aaron among his priests, and Samuel among them that call upon his name; they called upon the LORD, and he answered them.

7 He spake unto them in the cloudy pillar: they kept his testimonies, and the ordinance that he gave them.

8 Thou answeredst them, O LORD our God: thou wast a God that forgavest them, though thou tookest vengeance of their inventions.

9 Exalt the LORD our God, and worship at his holy hill; for the LORD our God is holy.
***

 
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Posted by on March 18, 2017 in God's Truth

 

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The Glory of God

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Thanking our Lord for His teachings in the 19th Chapter of the Psalms. Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary is a great study tool in helping understand God’s Word.

Psalms 19

1 The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork.

2 Day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night sheweth knowledge.

3 There is no speech nor language, where their voice is not heard.

4 Their line is gone out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world. In them hath he set a tabernacle for the sun,

5 Which is as a bridegroom coming out of his chamber, and rejoiceth as a strong man to run a race.

6 His going forth is from the end of the heaven, and his circuit unto the ends of it: and there is nothing hid from the heat thereof.

“The heavens so declare the glory of God, and proclaim his wisdom, power, and goodness, that all ungodly men are left without excuse. They speak themselves to be works of God’s hands; for they must have a Creator who is eternal, infinitely wise, powerful, and good. The counter-changing of day and night is a great proof of the power of God, and calls us to observe, that, as in the kingdom of nature, so in that of providence, he forms the light, and creates the darkness, Isaiah 45:7, and sets the one against the other. The sun in the firmament is an emblem of the Sun of righteousness, the Bridegroom of the church, and the Light of the world, diffusing Divine light and salvation by his gospel to the nations of the earth. He delights to bless his church, which he has espoused to himself; and his course will be unwearied as that of the sun, till the whole earth is filled with his light and salvation. Let us pray for the time when he shall enlighten, cheer, and make fruitful every nation on earth, with the blessed salvation. They have no speech or language, so some read it, and yet their voice is heard. All people may hear these preachers speak in their own tongue the wonderful works of God. Let us give God the glory of all the comfort and benefit we have by the lights of heaven, still looking above and beyond them to the Sun of righteousness.”

7 The law of the LORD is perfect, converting the soul: the testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple.

8 The statutes of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart: the commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes.

9 The fear of the LORD is clean, enduring for ever: the judgments of the LORD are true and righteous altogether.

10 More to be desired are they than gold, yea, than much fine gold: sweeter also than honey and the honeycomb.

“The Holy Scripture is of much greater benefit to us than day or night, than the air we breathe, or the light of the sun. To recover man out of his fallen state, there is need of the word of God. The word translated “law,” may be rendered doctrine, and be understood as meaning all that teaches us true religion. The whole is perfect; its tendency is to convert or turn the soul from sin and the world, to God and holiness. It shows our sinfulness and misery in departing from God, and the necessity of our return to him. This testimony is sure, to be fully depended on: the ignorant and unlearned believing what God saith, become wise unto salvation. It is a sure direction in the way of duty. It is a sure fountain of living comforts, and a sure foundation of lasting hopes. The statues of the Lord are right, just as they should be; and, because they are right, they rejoice the heart. The commandments of the Lord are pure, holy, just, and good. By them we discover our need of a Saviour; and then learn how to adorn his gospel. They are the means which the Holy Spirit uses in enlightening the eyes; they bring us to a sight and sense of our sin and misery, and direct us in the way of duty. The fear of the Lord, that is, true religion and godliness, is clean, it will cleanse our way; and it endureth for ever. The ceremonial law is long since done away, but the law concerning the fear of God is ever the same. The judgments of the Lord, his precepts, are true; they are righteous, and they are so altogether; there is no unrighteousness in any of them. Gold is only for the body, and the concerns of time; but grace is for the soul, and the concerns of eternity. The word of God, received by faith, is more precious than gold; it is sweet to the soul, sweeter than honey. The pleasure of sense soon surfeit, yet never satisfy; but those of religion are substantial and satisfying; there is no danger of excess.”

11 Moreover by them is thy servant warned: and in keeping of them there is great reward.

12 Who can understand his errors? cleanse thou me from secret faults.

13 Keep back thy servant also from presumptuous sins; let them not have dominion over me: then shall I be upright, and I shall be innocent from the great transgression.

14 Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O LORD, my strength, and my redeemer.

“God’s word warns the wicked not to go on in his wicked way, and warns the righteous not to turn from his good way. There is a reward, not only after keeping, but in keeping God’s commandments. Religion makes our comforts sweet, and our crosses easy, life truly valuable, and death itself truly desirable. David not only desired to be pardoned and cleansed from the sins he had discovered and confessed, but from those he had forgotten or overlooked. All discoveries of sin made to us by the law, should drive us to the throne of grace, there to pray. His dependence was the same with that of every Christian who says, Surely in the Lord Jesus have I righteousness and strength. No prayer can be acceptable before God which is not offered in the strength of our Redeemer or Divine Kinsman, through Him who took our nature upon him, that he might redeem us unto God, and restore the long-lost inheritance. May our hearts be much affected with the excellence of the word of God; and much affected with the evil of sin, and the danger we are in of it, and the danger we are in by it.”

 
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Posted by on February 3, 2017 in God's Truth

 

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Only the Armor of God is Our Arsenal!

EVERY BORN AGAIN CHILD OF GOD MUST IMPLEMENT THIS IN OUR LIVES EACH AND EVERY DAY! Yes, only the armor of God will win the battle of spiritual warfare that we all face if we are born again by the blood of Jesus Christ. When we become children of God, we not only inherit God’s blessings but God’s enemies as well. The Lord’s foremost enemy is satan, whose purpose is to destroy God’s work – John 8:44 “Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.” But, Jesus came to “destroy the works of the devil!” 1 John 3:8 “He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil.”

satan is a fallen angel – Isaiah 14:12-15 “How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations! For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north: I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High. Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit.” As a fallen angel, he is only a created being. He is in no way equal to God, our Creator! While satan is superior in intellect and strength to mankind, he is inferior to God in every way. Believers have the power of the indwelling resurrected Christ over them and protecting them. All we have to do is use the Living Word of God and believe, His power will overcome the enemy – 1 John 4:4 “Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.” (Man do I wear that verse out!)

In addition, believers have been given the whole armor of God “to stand against the wiles of the devil” – Ephesians 6:11 “Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.”

Each piece of the armor is to be put on to help believers overcome the temptations and attacks of the evil one!

  1.  Having Girded Your Waist with Truth (Ephesians 6:14): The waist or abdomen area was generally thought to be the seat of emotions. To gird this area with truth is to commit your emotions to believe the truth. Often a person knowingly allows herself to believe a lie because of fear or self-pity. Believers must hold a commitment to truth regardless of the repercussions – John 8:32, 36 “And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free…If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.”
  2.  Having Put on the Breastplate of Righteousness (Ephesians 6:14): “Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness;” The breast is generally thought of as the place of the soul. The heart must be kept pure and righteous because sin gives a foothold to the enemy. We must confess our sin, and then forgiveness on the basis of the blood of Christ cleanses our hearts – 1 John 1:9 “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”
  3. Having Shod Your Feet with the Preparation of the Gospel of Peace (Ephesians 6:15): “And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace;” The proper shoes enable our feet to go from place to place. The believer is to be about her Father’s business, which is to spread the gospel of peace and reconciliation. An unshakable sense of this mission will keep us headed in the right direction – Matthew 28:19, 20 “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.”
  4. Taking the Shield of Faith (Ephesians 6:16): “Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.” Notice it says ALL the fiery darts of the wicked. The wicked one is “the accuser of our brethren” – Revelation 12:10 “And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night.” He will send his fiery darts to instill doubt, fear, and guilt. Faith acts as an invisible shield that deflects such false accusations – Hebrews 11:6 “But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.” The one thing that helps us keep that faith is memorizing these words from God and using them against that evil accuser. God’s Words are living and they have power from on High that we do not have. Remember how Jesus did that when He was tempted by satan?
  5. Take the Helmet of Salvation (Ephesians 6:17): “And take the helmet of salvation,” A helmet protects the head, that is, our brain and our thoughts (yes, satan can try to attack us and make us doubt by getting into our thoughts. We must come against those thoughts immediately, for we learn to know and discern right away that such thoughts are not from God. And evil MUST flee at the name of Jesus – “the LORD rebuke you satan”, “get thee behind me satan, in the name of JESUS I command you!”). Assurance of Salvation is a mighty defense against doubt and insecurity and the kinds of works that are bred by them – 1 John 5:11-13 “And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life. These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.” What an awesome, assuring promise! Memorize it!
  6. Take the Sword of the Spirit (Ephesians 6:17): “and the sword of the Spirit,which is the word of God:” The Word of God, the only offensive weapon in this armor, was used by the Lord Jesus against satan as I said above. We find this account in Luke 4:1-13. As I said, the Word of God is living and all powerful as well as effective and instructive (Hebrews 4:12; 2 Timothy 3:16, 17) “For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart…All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.”
  7. Praying Always (Ephesians 6:18): “Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;” Prayer opens communication between us and God. In the midst of battle, we as believers MUST keep in CONSTANT communication with our Leader for directions and encouragement. Our prayers for one another are important and effectual – James 5:16 “Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.”

 

 
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Posted by on September 9, 2016 in Call to Action

 

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Why we Need to Know God’s Promises

Our Pastor Brockman has been teaching on God’s promises in His Word. How can we call upon Him and claim His great promises if we do not know them? Such a loving God to fill His Word with so very many precious promises to help get us through this secular world of strife as we await His return!

Today we will look at Philippians 4:10-19 “But I rejoiced in the Lord greatly, that now at the last your care of me hath flourished again; wherein ye were also careful, but ye lacked opportunity. Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me. Notwithstanding ye have well done, that ye did communicate with my affliction. Now ye Philippians know also, that in the beginning of the gospel, when I departed from Macedonia, no church communicated with me as concerning giving and receiving, but ye only. For even in Thessalonica ye sent once and again unto my necessity. Not because I desire a gift: but I desire fruit that may abound to your account. But I have all, and abound: I am full, having received of Epaphroditus the things which were sent from you, an odour of a sweet smell, a sacrifice acceptable, wellpleasing to God. But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.”

Paul was a great role model for Christian courtesy, and tact. He expressed deep gratitude, verses 10 and 14 “But I rejoiced in the Lord greatly, that now at the last your care of me hath flourished again; wherein ye were also careful, but ye lacked opportunity. 14. Notwithstanding ye have well done, that ye did communicate with my affliction.” Yet he also used this as an opportunity to teach the Philippians more about the guardianship and provision of God and the expectancy and contentment of the believer who would wait on the Lord, verses 11 and 14 “11. Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.” Believers are to be “content,” not with circumstances, but in circumstances. This Godly contentment does not forbid drive, ambition,or righting wrongs in life – I Timothy 6 (Contentment). Such faith was not his at birth, but was painfully and tediously developed by walking with the Lord so that he learned to be content with anything, to live above things, to be unaffected by circumstances. My Lord continues to teach me this concept still today. Sometimes I catch myself in the circumstances, whereas I did not used to at all.

My God Shall Supply all Your Need: This needs to be seen in its context. Such amazing generosity does not allow for foolish and wasteful spending on our part, while God is considered responsible for necessities. Instead, because the Philippians had been so generous in their Christian giving, God would meet their needs as well. Philippians 4:8-10 “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. Those things, which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do: and the God of peace shall be with you. But I rejoiced in the Lord greatly, that now at the last your care of me hath flourished again; wherein ye were also careful, but ye lacked opportunity.” II Corinthians 9:7,8 “Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver. And God is able to make all grace abound toward you; that ye, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work:” I have found it to be ever so true that “we cannot out-give God.” More importantly, all that we are blessed with belongs to and came from God in the first place.

 
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Posted by on February 13, 2016 in God's Love

 

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