25 Apr 2014 Schedule Me
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17 May 2010 Conquering Sin
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God loved us so much that He made a way to resurrect us from a spiritually dead condition and give us life: grace is given to us and whomever receives God’s grace is made alive and set free from sin and death. To conquer sin would then be to receive the grace God has provided through the death, burial and resurrection of His Son and live daily in that grace.

Some think that by using willpower and self-denial sin can be conquered and then grace achieved. That would be like saying a physically dead person just needs to overcome their dead condition through willpower and self-denial. That just won’t happen. A dead person cannot resurrect themselves. It takes some external force to bring a person back to life in the same way it takes an external force to bring a spiritually dead person back to a living spiritual condition. People who are kept alive on life support systems need that system to stay alive and so do we need God’s spiritual life support to stay spiritually alive. The great thing about God’s life support is that it does not just keep you alive – it empowers you and makes you stronger (spiritually speaking).

It’s time for believer’s to rest in the finished work at the cross, receive the free gift of grace and not try to add anything to what God has fully provided.

13 May 2010 God is Not a Thief
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I hear too many people say that God took their child or God took their wife and that God caused a hurricane to rip through a city because of the sin there. To take something is to steal, which makes you a thief and what the Bible says in John 10:10 is this,

“The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy…”

Who is the thief in this portion of scripture?It is NOT God! The second half of this verse says,

“…I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it MORE ABUNDANTLY.”

God would have to violate one of His own commandments to “take” someone from this earth without permission. Let’s give credit where credit is due. The devil is the thief, not God, and we need to recognize this and know that God is good, not evil.

According to people who say that God takes loved ones by disease and accident and according to the ones who say that God causes hurricanes to punish people for their sin it would be God.

09 May 2010 To know or be known?
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I am loved by God. I am made whole by God. I am…made by God. I have never done anything of myself, it has always been God, my heavenly Father, Who has done everything for me. John understood this more than Peter did. John tells us he is the disciple whom Jesus loved whereas Peter tells Jesus he loves Him and he would never deny him. Our strength is derived from the understanding of God loving us and not us loving God. I cannot accomplish anything without God’s ability in me. It was the same way from the beginning when God created man…from NOTHING! When man needed saving, there was nothing man could do to save himself. He needed a savior and the Creator came and made Himself our savior. So remember the song that says, “In Him we live and move and have our being” when you go about your day. Rest in the strength and ability of God and don’t try and accomplish anything on your own – including righteousness.

21 Apr 2010 Amazing Grace?
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If the grace which God extends to us is so amazing, why have we tried to make it so difficult to stay saved? It is by grace we were saved, not by works, and it is by grace we remain saved and not by works. Rest in the grace of God and live with the freedom Christ has given us. Allow yourself, and others, to walk daily in the presence of God. What we look like on the outside isn’t what matters -it’s what’s going on inside that is more important.

13 Apr 2010 Doing Good and Healing
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“how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power, who went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed of by the devil, for God was with Him.” Acts 10:38

To be Christ-like is to do good AND to heal. Before Jesus came we were reminded of our death and sin by the law but when the promise entered the world we were made to be righteous. Rejoice in that God has MADE you righteous and tell others about it.

13 Oct 2009 The Will of God
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Last Will & TestamentHave you heard someone, or maybe you have said, I just want to be in the will of God? I’ve heard it AND said it. What is the will of God? Where do you have to go to BE in the will of God? Do you have to say the right things, do the right things? Is it praying three times a day and fasting forty days? Do you need to read the Bible all the way through once a year or at least try? Do you have to obey the Laws of God? Speak the right language? Do you have to move to Israel and pray at the Wailing Wall and offer sacrifices of blood on the altar? Is it all of the drink offerings, wave offerings, grain offerings, money offerings, celebration of festivals on the right day, in the right way? Does the Shofar need to be blown? Do you need to cover your head with a prayer shawl or wear a Yarmulke. Can you cut your hair or does it need to be long. If your a woman, can you speak in church or wear jewelry? Can you wear pants or is a dress mandatory?

If I had the time I could probably list a few hundred, if not thousand, more things people are doing to hopefully place themselves in the will of God. There is no need to list any more, or the ones I just listed for that matter. None of these things will place you in the will of God. These are the works of the Law. Check out these verses:

Gal 2:16 KJV Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.

Gal 3:10 KJV For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse: for it is written, Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them.

Notice the part where it says “works of the law” in Gal 2:16 and right before that it says that a man, or person, is not justified by works of the law. The things listed in the very first part of this post are some of those “works of the law.” If you try and make yourself justified by the works of the law you are under the curse of the law. That’s what it says in Gal 3:10. This is such good news! We have been delivered, or as it says in Gal 3:13, redeemed, from the curse of the law. Israel tried to attain righteousness by the works of the law:

Rom 9:31-33 KJV But Israel, which followed after the law of righteousness, hath not attained to the law of righteousness. (32) Wherefore? Because they sought it not by faith, but as it were by the works of the law. For they stumbled at that stumblingstone; (33) As it is written, Behold, I lay in Sion a stumblingstone and rock of offence: and whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.

The stumblingstone and rock of offence is Jesus. If you believe what He said, and promised, you will not be ashamed.

Rom 10:1-4 KJV Brethren, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for Israel is, that they might be saved. (2) For I bear them record that they have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge. (3) For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God. (4) For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth.

Israel was not saved! Why? They were lacking knowledge – the knowledge of the way to righteousness. They were worshiping God, but not in truth. The truth is, that until a person has a knowledge of Jesus being an end of the law FOR RIGHTEOUSNESS they will not be saved. Not the end of the law, but the end of the law as far as being made righteous. Jesus’ finished work at the cross is the accomplishment of our righteousness. But in order to be made righteous in God’s eyes, you must believe in your heart and confess with your mouth that Jesus is the way to righteousness.

Rom 10:9-10 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
(10) For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

Remember the stumblingstone in Rom 9:33? It says that whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed – just like it does here in Rom 10:10! To be in the Will, the Last Will and Testament, of God you must confess with your mouth and believe in your heart that Jesus is the end of the law for righteousness and that your righteousness comes only through Him and the sacrifice that was made with His blood.

 

01 Oct 2009 Only Believe
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Have you ever had a bad report? I’m sure most of us have had some sort of news which didn’t sit well or make the future very appealing. Jesus encountered many people who had either been given a bad report or were faced with circumstances which were gloomy and even dire. One such account we have is in Mark chapter 5. At one point Jesus is approached by a man named Jairus and this man begs Jesus earnestly to come with him because his daughter is very sick, even to the point of death. Jesus agrees and follows Jairus towards where his daughter is. But then another person, a woman, who has had a blood issue for 12 years touches Jesus. Jesus stops and acknowledges that she has touched Him and that her faith has made her well. I’m sure Jairus had an opportunity to become impatient. His daughter is sick to the point of death, Jesus has stopped to deal with another, who, by the way was not sick and near dehat. This woman was very troubled by her condition and wanted very much to be free from it but Jairus’ daughter was near death. Surely Jesus would make all haste to get to her to take care of her and not let her die! But, in the end, Jesus’ delay with the woman in the crowd was enough of a time delay that the little girl died. Look at what happens here:

Mar 5:35 While he yet spake, there came from the ruler of the synagogue’s house certain which said, Thy daughter is dead: why troublest thou the Master any further?

How tragic! Didn’t Jesus know He needed to hurry to get to the little girl? Surely the one near death would take a front seat to the one who was only suffering! Don’t be mistaken here. God cared deeply for both parties involved. Remember, what we see, feel and hear are not the real world. Jesus knew this and He also knew that both circumstances would be taken care of because He saw with the eye of faith.

Mar 5:36 As soon as Jesus heard the word that was spoken, he saith unto the ruler of the synagogue, Be not afraid, only believe.

Mar 5:39 And when he was come in, he saith unto them, Why make ye this ado, and weep? the damsel is not dead, but sleepeth.
Mar 5:40 And they laughed him to scorn. But when he had put them all out, he taketh the father and the mother of the damsel, and them that were with him, and entereth in where the damsel was lying.
Mar 5:41 And he took the damsel by the hand, and said unto her, Talitha cumi; which is, being interpreted, Damsel, I say unto thee, arise.
Mar 5:42 And straightway the damsel arose, and walked; for she was of the age of twelve years. And they were astonished with a great astonishment.

It may look like it is too late for God to help you in your situation but “Be not afraid, only believe.” The One who made all things with a Word is the same One Who has provided all things for you. It is never too late! Let not your heart be troubled and believe in the One who is able.

17 Sep 2009 Thoroughly Equipped for Every Good Work
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Let the Scripture make you complete and thoroughly equipped for every good work. There is no need for any external forces to test you to become thoroughly equipped for every good work. You ONLY need Scripture.

2Ti 3:16 All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness,
2Ti 3:17 that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.

Happy day!

14 Sep 2009 Bearing Fruit
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SeedsI have several packets of seeds I did not get around to planting this year. It would have been nice to have planted these and benefited from what the seeds would produce, but I didn’t. The good news is, I can probably use those seeds next year if I store them properly. Seeds do not last forever. They do break down over time and will ultimately be unable to produce their particular fruit, whether it is a flower, fruit or vegetable.

Once a seed germinates and begins to grow, it needs to be fed in order for it to reach maturity and begin to produce its kind of fruit. The fruit it bears is based on the genetic makeup of the seed. The seed does not decide what it will produce, nor does the seed have the ability to bear fruit of itself. Life was placed in that seed from the beginning of creation when the original plant was created by God. The genetic disposition and the ability to bear fruit was placed in the the plants and passed down to every seed which comes from each particular plant. Each seed does not know how to grow, it just does, given the correct growing conditions.

God refers to certain aspects of our lives as bearing fruit. He lists for us the fruits of the spirit:

Gal 5:22,23
Gal 5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,
Gal 5:23 gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law. NKJV

Notice that these are the fruit of the Spirit, not the flesh. Look how the Amplified says it:

Gal 5:22 But the fruit of the [Holy] Spirit [the work which His presence within accomplishes] is love, joy (gladness), peace, patience (an even temper, forbearance), kindness, goodness (benevolence), faithfulness,
Gal 5:23 Gentleness (meekness, humility), self-control (self-restraint, continence). Against such things there is no law [that can bring a charge]. AMP

See in verse 22 it says, “the work which His presence within accomplishes?” It is not in our own accomplishments or attempts that we can bear fruit. It is the accomplishment of the Spirit of God within us. When you accept Jesus as your Lord and Savior, your spirit is made new, not your flesh. From that day forward, the Spirit of God IN YOU gives you the desire and ability to produce the fruit OF THE SPIRIT.

Php 2:12 …work out (cultivate, carry out to the goal, and fully complete) your own salvation with reverence and awe and trembling (self-distrust, with serious caution, tenderness of conscience, watchfulness against temptation, timidly shrinking from whatever might offend God and discredit the name of Christ).
Php 2:13 [Not in your own strength] for it is God Who is all the while effectually at work in you [energizing and creating in you the power and desire], both to will and to work for His good pleasure and satisfaction and delight. AMP

Phil 2:13 again tells us that it is not in our strength and ability we accomplish growth and change. It is by the ability of God we accomplish growth and change.

Jesus tells us what we are like in a parable in John 15:4

Joh 15:4 Dwell in Me, and I will dwell in you. [Live in Me, and I will live in you.] Just as no branch can bear fruit of itself without abiding in (being vitally united to) the vine, neither can you bear fruit unless you abide in Me. AMP

We are God’s creation and He has given us everything we need for life and godliness:

2Pe 1:3 For His divine power has bestowed upon us all things that [are requisite and suited] to life and godliness, through the [full, personal] knowledge of Him Who called us by and to His own glory and excellence (virtue).
2Pe 1:4 By means of these He has bestowed on us His precious and exceedingly great promises, so that through them you may escape [by flight] from the moral decay (rottenness and corruption) that is in the world because of covetousness (lust and greed), and become sharers (partakers) of the divine nature. AMP

Let the power and presence of God in you change you from the inside out. Thank Him for fruit in your life and watch as you see things on the outside change because of the work going on on the inside. When you gain victory in areas of your life you will, without doubt, be able to say your Father changed you and He will get ALL of the glory for the change.