Archive

Archive for the ‘Scripture’ Category

In the Palm of His Hand

April 5th, 2011 No comments

This morning the Lord put these scriptures on my heart.  I truly believe a lot of you need to hear this.

“I have loved you with an everlasting love.” “I have drawn you with loving kindness.”  Jeremiah 31:3

“Your name is inscribed in the palm of My hand.” Isaiah 49:16

In other words, “I love you, I love you, I love you… Love, Jesus!”

Categories: Scripture Tags:

Hard Work

March 29th, 2011 No comments

We wear that phrase like a badge of honor.  “I worked really hard today”. “I logged 50 hours this week at work”.  “Man, I’m exhausted I’ve worked so hard”. 

And I know you can come up with many more.  After all, we have said something like that so many times and been very proud of that very fact.

But what I’ve been learning over the past year is that the only labor commanded of us under the New Covenant is that we labor to enter into his rest.

Hebrews 4:11-16
11 Therefore let us be diligent to enter that rest, so that no one will fall, through following the same example of disobedience. CLICK HERE TO READ IN FULL CONTEXT

WAIT!! 

That sounds contradictory. Labor to Rest?? What can that possibly mean?

One major clue can be found in the title of this book of the Bible – Hebrews.  From the beginning, the Hebrews were God’s chosen people.  Centuries before He had given them the Law.  A set of rules so impossible to keep that intervention was a necessity.

And if those Levitical rules were not enough, through the years the Rabbi’s or Pharisees and Sadducees, had developed even more rules or Rabbinical rules.  At the time this book of the Bible was written, the Hebrews knew no life outside of legalistic rules.  It was their nature; it permeated every thought, action and deed.

In the Bible there have been two ways to be in right standing with God.  The first was the Law.  To be right with God through the Law, you had to keep EVERY law, and there were thousands!  To gain atonement for your sin you had to get a spotless sacrifice such as a lamb and once sacrificed, its blood covered your sins temporarily.

But Jesus came to give us a higher and more perfect way to be in right standing with God.  This higher form is called grace.  Grace is so much higher than the law, that it took the entire New Testament to share the wonders of all that it meant.

The writer of Hebrews had a tough task ahead.  They wanted to help the Hebrews understand that they no longer had to follow rules to be in right standing with God.  Many got it and lived by it, but for others it was easy to fall back into their old habit of living by the law.

I am sure it felt comfortable to them like bathing themselves in a warm bath.  But the truth is that the law brings about the punishment of death.

Romans 4:15
15 For the Law inflicts punishment; but where no Law exists, there can be no violation of Law.

It was imperative for the writer of the book of Hebrews to caution them to not fall away, or fall back into living by the law.

Hebrews 6:4-6
4 For in the case of those who have once been enlightened and have tasted of the heavenly gift and have been made partakers of the Holy Spirit, 5 and have tasted the good word of God and the powers of the age to come, 6 and then have fallen away, it is impossible to renew them again to repentance, since they again crucify to themselves the Son of God and put Him to open shame.

The highest form of life is living by the grace provided by God through Jesus Christ.  To live by the law is substandard.  To live by laws which provide certain punishment of death because they are impossible to keep, is far below the life God had planned for mankind.  In verse 6 above, the writer is urging them to not fall from grace back into the law where death is a certainty.

Grace is a FREE gift from God.  We cannot earn it and to try to do so puts us in a fallen state; a state of disobedience and faithlessness.  To perpetually work to earn favor keeps us in an unrepentant state.

If this seems odd to you, think of it like this.  When you are working for favor the focus is on you and what you have done.  This is sinful pride.

But to ignore works and to focus on THE work that was done at the cross by Jesus Christ we can receive the fulfillment of His love and good deeds will manifest naturally, apart from our own works or effort.

Our own works or efforts to ‘be good’ or ‘do right’ are like filthy rags to the Lord.  But freely receiving grace, allowing His blood to cleanse your sins, once and for all is true freedom.  The freedom that Jesus died to give us!

Beware that you to do not fall from grace back into living by the law.  Not Rabbinical or Levitical Law, but the laws of man, that have continued to be made, in an effort to achieve that right state with God. 

Yes, even we gentiles can fall from grace into law.  Check yourself daily, not to see if you have done right or been good, but that you have maintained total dependence on the grace of God to do all things and not of your own hard work.

Categories: Scripture Tags:

Love!

March 22nd, 2011 2 comments

What a word! 

We hear that word from the moment we are born. 

Mommy whispers in our ear, ‘Mommy loves you”.

As we grow we hear, and therefore learn, that big brother just ‘loves’ the neighbors new car.  Big sister, ‘loves’ her new boyfriend she just had one date with.  Mom ‘loves’ the new wallpaper in the bedroom.  Dad ‘loves’ his new job.

Our first impression of love is one of tender affection.  And honestly it IS our whole world.  But as we grow, that word becomes watered down.  That once powerful word which was the definition of our closest bond, has come to be on an equal playing ground with the neighbors new car and wallpaper.

Therefore, it is no wonder that when we first hear that God ‘loves’ us, we really do not have any true concept of what that really is.  And in turn when we are told to ‘love’ others, we ‘love’ them as wallpaper which we strip away as soon as we become bored with it, or cars which are traded away every few years.  This is the way we love because this is what we have come to know.

Recently God specifically led me to Philippians 1:9-11. I have read this scripture many times and had also underlined it. But as I read it this time I sensed that there was a much deeper meaning, which yearned to be revealed. I wanted it to soak into my being, so I asked God to help me to get it, really get it, in a new and fresh and powerful way.   

Verse 9 reads:
And this, I pray: that your love may abound yet more and more and extend to its fullest development in knowledge and all keen insight. Amplified minus the parenthesis

The first thing that stood out to me was that love (agape – greek) has knowledge and keen insight. We have often thought of love as being simply an emotion, not an entity with knowledge and insight. Maybe we have come to realize that love is also a verb. It is something you do. 

But love is also a proper noun.  Love can and does possess knowledge and keen insight.  Then I began to think, what was this knowledge and keen insight that love had.

Also in this verse it talks about love being developed more and more. So it has a beginning, but from that beginning it can be developed into a fullness beyond what it was originally. 

Verse 10 reads:
So, that you may surely learn to sense what is vital, and approve and prize what is excellent and of real value and that you may be untainted and pure and unerring and blameless. Amplified minus the parenthesis 

As I was meditating on these scriptures I began to realize that by exercising our love and developing it to its fullest, we begin to learn what is of true value intuitively and, that understanding causes us to make moral and right decisions which lead to purity. 

 This happens automatically, apart from our own effort because it is life transformation.  Not by forcing ourselves to follow the ‘be good’ rules, but by immersing ourselves in the reality of God’s agape love for us and funneling it through to others.  Life transformation ONLY happens from the inside out, NOT from outside in.

Your actions will be birthed out of a fully developed agape love and not out of obligation to follow a moral set of rules. Because our love will have become so developed, the knowledge and keen insight that love has will create in us automatically, a caliber of living that is reflective of Christ.

Verse 11 reads:
May you abound in and be filled with the fruits of righteousness which come through Jesus Christ to the honor and praise of God. Amplified minus the parenthesis 

When reading the parenthesis in this amplified verse I began to see a defined purpose in developing our love.  A purpose beyond just being good and loving and kind.  The parenthesis at the end of verse 11 say [that His glory may be both manifested and recognized].

I meditated on these scriptures for several days to allow God to fully reveal the deep meaning in these scriptures. Each day I saw more and more the depth and true meaning behind them. Here is a summary of what I feel is the meaning of these scriptures.

We are to purposely exercise our love toward everyone by drawing from Jesus himself and funneling His love, which is Himself, to others.  We are to exercise love daily, using it actively each and every moment. As it grows, we will automatically begin to make right and moral decisions. As we begin to make these right and moral decisions our lives will become more and more a reflection of Christ. And through this, God’s glory will not only be manifest in our lives, but it will be recognized by others and all men will be drawn to Him.

  …faith, hope and love, and the greatest of these is love. I Cor. 13:13

Categories: Scripture Tags:

The Power of the Word

April 16th, 2010 2 comments

“By all indications from the responses he had received either by mail, email, phone calls and messages, not to mention those that had spoken to him in person, everyone thinks he should be in prison!”

Now read this again:

“By all indications from the responses he had received either by mail, email, phone calls and messages, not to mention those that had spoken to him in person, everyone thinks he should be in prison ministry!”

Proverbs 25:11  A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in a setting of silver.

————————————————————————————————————-

More Great Words… His Word!

Proverbs 18:21 Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruits.

Proverbs 12:18 There is one whose rash words are like sword thrusts, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.

Matthew 15:18 But what comes out of the mouth proceeds from the heart, and this defiles a person.

Proverbs 16:24 Gracious words are like a honeycomb, sweetness to the soul and health to the body.

Ephesians 4:29 Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.

Proverbs 13:3 Whoever guards his mouth preserves his life; he who opens wide his lips comes to ruin.

Proverbs 21:23 Whoever keeps his mouth and his tongue keeps himself out of trouble.

Proverbs 17:9 Whoever covers an offense seeks love, but he who repeats a matter separates close friends.

Proverbs 10:19 When words are many, transgression is not lacking, but whoever restrains his lips is prudent.

Psalm 19:14 Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O Lord, my rock and my redeemer.

Romans 12:14 Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse them.

Matthew 12:34 You brood of vipers! How can you speak good, when you are evil? For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.

John 8:31 So Jesus said to the Jews who had believed in him, “If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples,

John 1:1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

Proverbs 17:27 Whoever restrains his words has knowledge, and he who has a cool spirit is a man of understanding.

Proverbs 15:4 A gentle tongue is a tree of life, but perverseness in it breaks the spirit.

Proverbs 15:1 A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.

Ephesians 6:17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God,

John 8:31-32 So Jesus said to the Jews who had believed in him, “If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”

John 1:14 And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.

Luke 6:45 The good person out of the good treasure of his heart produces good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure produces evil, for out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks.

Matthew 12:37 For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.”

Isaiah 54:17 No weapon that is fashioned against you shall succeed, and you shall confute every tongue that rises against you in judgment. This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord and their vindication from me, declares the Lord.”

Proverbs 29:20 Do you see a man who is hasty in his words? There is more hope for a fool than for him.

Proverbs 16:23-24 The heart of the wise makes his speech judicious and adds persuasiveness to his lips. Gracious words are like a honeycomb, sweetness to the soul and health to the body.

Proverbs 27:2 Let another praise you, and not your own mouth; a stranger, and not your own lips.

Proverbs 17:28 Even a fool who keeps silent is considered wise; when he closes his lips, he is deemed intelligent.

Categories: Scripture Tags:

The Speed of Light

September 24th, 2009 No comments

If the speed of light is 671,000,000 mph, which is slower than how fast God shows up when you ask for forgiveness. remember that light and dark are in a continual battle for supremacy. With speeds that quick, be sure what side are you calling on. The dark side is happy to show up quick too! Call on the Light!

Jesus spoke to the people once more and said, “I am the light of the world. If you follow me, you won’t have to walk in darkness, because you will have the light that leads to life.”

John 8:12 

Categories: Scripture, Thoughts? Tags:

Praying to God Puts Me to Sleep!

August 17th, 2009 3 comments

Some nights I find myself waking up and the thoughts begin rolling through my mind. Thoughts of the coming day, things to do, places to go and accomplishments yet to be done. The worries of the world begin set in too. You could call it life in general or even the attack of the Evil One (Devil), but I call an opportunity to call on my God to rescue me and give me peace. Soon after I call on His name and begin to pray, I don’t realize that I have fallen fast asleep. Soon after the alarm clock is going off, calling me to welcome another day the Lord has made.

In short….Praying to God puts me to sleep!

Psalm 55: 22    Cast your cares on the LORD and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous fall.

Categories: Scripture, Thoughts? Tags:

Healthy Fruit versus Sinful Nature

August 12th, 2009 2 comments

It seems like more and more people are worried about their well being, their health and wealth. Fighting and arguing about what the government is saying and doing about insurance overhauls and the economical state of our nation. People are speaking out at “Town Meetings” and in the media about their well being and concerns. That’s all understandable, right?

Why aren’t more people standing up and speaking out for our nations Spiritual well being? I’d say that Healthy Fruit versus Sinful Nature has far greater meaning and need in this world, both in our present needs and eternal future, wouldn’t you?

Today is the day to SPEAK UP and have some Fruit!

 

Living by the Spirit’s Power

Galatians 5: 16-26

So I say, let the Holy Spirit guide your lives. Then you won’t be doing what your sinful nature craves. The sinful nature wants to do evil, which is just the opposite of what the Spirit wants. And the Spirit gives us desires that are the opposite of what the sinful nature desires. These two forces are constantly fighting each other, so you are not free to carry out your good intentions. But when you are directed by the Spirit, you are not under obligation to the Law of Moses.

When you follow the desires of your sinful nature, the results are very clear: sexual immorality, impurity, lustful pleasures, idolatry, sorcery, hostility, quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambition, dissension, division, envy, drunkenness, wild parties, and other sins like these. Let me tell you again, as I have before, that anyone living that sort of life will not inherit the Kingdom of God.

But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things!

Those who belong to Christ Jesus have nailed the passions and desires of their sinful nature to his cross and crucified them there. Since we are living by the Spirit, let us follow the Spirit’s leading in every part of our lives. Let us not become conceited, or provoke one another, or be jealous of one another.

Categories: Scripture, Thoughts? Tags:

The Dark

August 4th, 2009 2 comments

This is one of those times I wish I could take credit for a great story.

If you don’t know who Christine Caine is, you need to get to know her and the mission that she is on. You can find her at http://www.equipandempower.org and see what she and her husband Nick are up to for the Kingdom of God.

The last time Christine was in Oklahoma City visiting Victory Church, www.vc.tv , she told the story of her daughter and her at at local store shopping for a few things when her daughter asked if she could get a flashlight. Of course that’s understandable, don’t you remember when you were a child how cool it was to shine a flashlight around outside or even in your bedroom after the sun went down? Good times!

Back to the story….. she got the flashlight and with it in hand and it still being daylight, the little girl made a great statement. This is where I’d love to take credit. She said “Mumm (said with an Australian accent) let’s go find some dark to shine the light into.”

Isn’t that what Jesus wants us to do? Find some dark to shine His light into?

Are you that shining light?

Being the light is good!

 

Genesis 1:2-4 

Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters.

 

And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. God saw that the light was good, and He separated the light from the darkness.

 

John 8:12

When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”

 

Matthew 5: 13-16

“You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled by men.

 

“You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.

 

Categories: Scripture Tags:

We serve a God of more than enough.

July 28th, 2009 No comments

No matter what you know, think or feel you are going through in these strange and ever changing times we are in, remember to lean on God for ALL your needs. He will ALWAYS supply you with what you need.

I know, I know, sometimes it’s easy to say but hard to do, right?

Have FAITH my brothers and sisters and never give up!

 

 Matthew 6: 24-34

“No one can serve two masters. For you will hate one and love the other; you will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.

“That is why I tell you not to worry about everyday life—whether you have enough food and drink, or enough clothes to wear. Isn’t life more than food, and your body more than clothing? Look at the birds. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for your heavenly Father feeds them. And aren’t you far more valuable to him than they are? Can all your worries add a single moment to your life?

 “And why worry about your clothing? Look at the lilies of the field and how they grow. They don’t work or make their clothing, yet Solomon in all his glory was not dressed as beautifully as they are. And if God cares so wonderfully for wildflowers that are here today and thrown into the fire tomorrow, he will certainly care for you. Why do you have so little faith?

 “So don’t worry about these things, saying, ‘What will we eat? What will we drink? What will we wear?’ These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers, but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs. Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.

 “So don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today. 

Categories: Scripture Tags:

Gossip or Judgement…. I’m just saying.

July 18th, 2009 9 comments

I’m just saying.

 

Are you having conversations with your family, friends and co-workers about others and what they are or aren’t doing? Is that judgment or gossip?

 

Maybe instead we should pray for them!

 

I’m just saying.

 

 

1 Timothy 5:13

Besides, they get into the habit of being idle and going about from house to house. And not only do they become idlers, but also gossips and busybodies, saying things they ought not to.

 

2 Corinthians 12:20

For I am afraid that when I come I may not find you as I want you to be, and you may not find me as you want me to be. I fear that there may be quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, factions, slander, gossip, arrogance and disorder.

 

Matthew 7: 1-5

 ”Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.

 ”Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.

 

 

 

Categories: Scripture Tags: