I AM NEVER GOING TO DIE!

Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die; and whoever lives by believing in me will never die. Do you believe this?” —John 11:25-26

Are you going to die? Not me! I have eternal life in the Lord Jesus Christ. I believe in Him! I trust in Him. His Word is Truth. He alone is fully trustworthy. He alone is the Creator of all things. He alone is Sustainer of all things. He alone is the owner of all things. He alone is over all men. He alone is carrying out His plan for this world. He alone gives eternal life. He alone gives hope in this life and beyond the grave. He alone became the substitute for my sin. He alone took the punishment and penalty for my wickedness. He alone rose from the grave as was foretold. He alone gives victory of sin. He alone gives victory over death. He alone gives victory over Satan. He alone is preparing a place for me in heaven. He alone is coming again. He alone is Judge of all men.

Who are you trusting in this life to give you life? Can you fully trust their word? Are they themselves able to be fully trusted? Have they created and sustain all things? Are they owner of all things? Are they over all men? Are they carrying out an unstoppable plan for this world? Can they give eternal life? Do they give hope in this life and beyond the grave? Did they became a substitute for your sin? Did they take the penalty and punishment for your wickedness? Did they rise from the grave as foretold? Do they give you victory over sin… death… Satan? Are they preparing for you a place in heaven? Are they coming back to judge all men? If not, why would you trust them?

Jesus is all this and so much more. He alone is Lord of lords and King of kings. He alone is to be worshiped.

So, are you going to die? Not if you know Jesus! This life is just the beginning of eternity! May we live faithfully for Jesus out of loving gratitude for all He is and for all He has done, is doing and will do in our lives. REJOICE! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bo9ZWX1lEKI

Dear Father, thank You for the life You have given me through the Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son. Now, may I live a life that is pleasing to You above all. May it be so in the power of the Holy Spirit and in the authority of Jesus.

SAFE IN THE STRONG HAND OF JESUS

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SAFE IN THE STRONG HAND OF JESUS

My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they will never perish. No one can snatch them away from me, for my Father has given them to me, and he is more powerful than anyone else. No one can snatch them from the Father’s hand. The Father and I are one.” Once again the people picked up stones to kill him. Jesus said, “At my Father’s direction I have done many good works. For which one are you going to stone me?” They replied, “We’re stoning you not for any good work, but for blasphemy! You, a mere man, claim to be God.” —John 10:27-33

Who would you want anchoring the line as you went over the side of a 100 foot cliff to reach the bottom? Would you want a 100 pound petite person or a 375 pound brute? Personally, I would go with the big brute!

Who do you want holding you during this life and at the point of death— Yourself or Jesus? Personally, I will trust the strength of Jesus. “The eternal God is your refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms” (Deuteronomy 33:27). The old hymn “Leaning on the Everlasting Arms” came from this verse in Deuteronomy as a music professor responded to two letters of former students whose wives died on the same day. One Stanza says:

“What have I to dread, what have I to fear,
Leaning on the everlasting arms?
I have blessed peace with my Lord so near,
Leaning on the everlasting arms.”

Part of the chorus says, “Safe and secure from all alarms.” I am so grateful to know the Lord Jesus and to know that I have eternal life. Nobody can break His grip on me. Nobody can cause Him to release me from His hand. Nobody is stronger than He. I am eternally secure in Jesus. When we understand Who Jesus is, then we can understand the Eternal Anchor who holds us and how safe we are in Him.

Dear Father, thank You for the safety and security I have in Jesus. Now, may I live a life of gratitude knowing how protected I am in Him!

JESUS IS MY SHEPHERD

I am the good shepherd. —John 10:11

Jesus is the “good shepherd.” Have you ever read Psalm 23 like this?

Jesus is my shepherd; I have all that I need. Jesus lets me rest in green meadows; Jesus leads me beside peaceful streams. Jesus renews my strength. Jesus guides me along right paths, bringing honor to his name. Even when I walk through the darkest valley, I will not be afraid, for Jesus is close beside me. Jesus’ rod and Jesus’ staff protect and comfort me. Jesus prepares a feast for me in the presence of my enemies. Jesus honors me by anointing my head with oil. My cup overflows with blessings. Surely Jesus’ goodness and unfailing love will pursue me all the days of my life, and I will live in the house of Jesus forever.

Jesus gives you all you need! He gives you rest and peace. He gives you strength. He guides you to bring honor to His Name. Jesus is close to you and you will not fear. He protects you and comforts you. He gives you a feast in your enemies’ presence. Jesus honors you and gives you overflowing blessings. His goodness and unfailing love is always with you. You will live in Jesus’ house forever.

So… what is it you need?

Dear Father, I thank You for the Lord Jesus Christ Who gives me everything I need to live a life that is full, purposeful and has eternal significance. Thank You for all He is and for all He does. He is AWESOME!

JESUS IS LORD!

“Yes, Lord, I believe!” the man said. And he worshiped Jesus. —John 9:38

Who do you believe in? Do you believe in your own intelligence? Are you putting your belief in scientists? Is your belief in some world religion? Do you believe in some cult? Are you saying you don’t believe in anything which is a belief in itself? What or Who do you believe in?

Your mind, my mind and even the most intelligent minds on the planet have a very small portion of knowledge when compared to the vast sea of knowledge that exists. All that we know we have learned along the way in some format whether formal or non-formal.

And yet there is common knowledge all around us every day that people miss or interpret wrongly. In Psalm 19:1-4 we read that “The heavens proclaim the glory of God. The skies display his craftsmanship. Day after day they continue to speak; night after night they make him known. They speak without a sound or word; their voice is never heard. Yet their message has gone throughout the earth, and their words to all the world.” The silent testimony of God screams out a quiet message every moment of every day— “I Am here.” But, the false interpretations of man seek to suppress that message as “wicked people who suppress the truth by their wickedness” (Romans 1:18).

The man in the verse above saw the work of Jesus’ creative ability when He restored his sight. He came to understand who Jesus was/is. Jesus is the Creator and Sustainer of all things (John 1:1-3; Colossians 1:15-17; Hebrews 1:1-3). Have you come to that understanding— that He is Lord (Master) over everything, including yourself?

As I was driving along the other day the telephone poles caught my eye. If you were to ask a person how did the poles got into the ground and how did the wires become attached they could simply tell you that men did it. But, only a few feet away trees were growing and if you asked people how they got there you typically would get answers that don’t include God. It is amazing that people can readily accept telephone poles had to be created and placed by man, but man is not readily accepting the fact that God created and placed the trees.

Lord, I believe that You are the Creator and Sustainer of all things. I understand that nothing is out of Your control and that You are working all things to fulfill Your purposes. So much I do not understand, but this I know and believe— You are Lord God Almighty!

SIN AND DEATH

…for unless you believe that I Am who I claim to be, you will die in your sins. —John 8:24

There are only two ways to die and only two ways to live. If a person truly believes in Jesus they are set free from the power and penalty of sin. They can now live a life that is pleasing to God. But if a person does not trust Jesus they are still in the bondage of sin and unable to “escape from the devil’s trap. For they have been held captive by him to do whatever he wants” (II Timothy 2:26). The sad thing about this is that they don’t even understand they are captive to Satan and are doing what he wants.

The person who has trusted the Lord Jesus Christ is forgiven of their sin and will never be condemn. Jesus took the punishment and penalty for their sin on the cross. When that person dies they will go to heaven to be with Jesus. What a joy that will be! Sadly, those who have not trusted Jesus will have to take the punishment and penalty for their sin that they would not trust Jesus to take. When those people die they will thrown into the Lake of Fire forever (Revelation 20:15). This is a terrible place and no, you will not be partying with friends there. To see what it is going to be like read Luke 16:19-31.

Everyone everywhere is commanded to repent (changed mind about sin, turning from sin) and trust the Lord Jesus because “For he has set a day for judging the world with justice by the man he has appointed, and he proved to everyone who this is by raising him from the dead” (Acts 17:31). Will you live and die freed from the penalty and power of sin or will you live and die in the bondage and penalty for sin? Your answer will determine your eternal destiny— heaven or hell.

Dear Father, thank You for the freedom I have in Jesus. I am grateful for Him taking the punishment for my sin at the cross. Oh, that I would live a life of gratitude in the power of the Holy Spirit and in the authority of Jesus. May it be so!

EVERYONE IS A LAW-BREAKER!

“Teacher,” they said to Jesus, “this woman was caught in the act of adultery. The law of Moses says to stone her. What do you say?” They were trying to trap him into saying something they could use against him, but Jesus stooped down and wrote in the dust with his finger. They kept demanding an answer, so he stood up again and said, “All right, but let the one who has never sinned throw the first stone!” Then he stooped down again and wrote in the dust. When the accusers heard this, they slipped away one by one, beginning with the oldest, until only Jesus was left in the middle of the crowd with the woman. Then Jesus stood up again and said to the woman, “Where are your accusers? Didn’t even one of them condemn you?” “No, Lord,” she said. And Jesus said, “Neither do I. Go and sin no more.” —John 8:4-11

Politicians are quick to point out the faults of others while seeking to hide their own. They want to make the other guy look bad and all the while they probably have worse things in their own lives. How many times have we heard politicians drag up something in somebody else’s life from 20-30 or more years ago or even when a person was in their teens as they try to smear them? If we really understood who we are from God’s perspective we who live in “glass houses would not throw stones” at others.

So it was in the passage above as these people were trying to trap Jesus in how He responded. Oh, how they wanted to catch Him saying something wrong, but they did not know who they were dealing with and that He knew them more than they understood themselves.

They came to Jesus with a woman who had been “caught in the act of adultery” to see if He would align with their interpretation of Moses and have her stoned. He did not immediately answer them but “stooped down and wrote in the dust with his finger.” They keep pressing Him for an answer and got something they did not expect. Jesus said, “All right, but let the one who has never sinned throw the first stone!” The older guys left first. They realized what He was saying. They had not keep Moses’ Law either. It took the younger guys a bit longer, but they left as well with that understanding. How could Law-breakers they cast stones at one who broke the Law?

The point Jesus was making was that the one who broke one part of the Law of Moses had broken it all as mention in James 2:10. True, the woman had broken the Law of Moses, but so had everyone else that had gathered to condemn her. In doing so Jesus also reminded them that they too were guilty of breaking the Law of Moses. They who had planks in their own eye wanted to be quick to point out the speck in someone else’s life. Jesus said, “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?” If they went ahead and stone the woman then they would also have to stone themselves!

Dear Father, please help me to be wise as I seek to encourage others. May I look at my own life and make sure that I have all known sinned confessed to You before trying to help someone else who may be in sin. Oh Holy Spirit, please reveal things in my own life that I need to get right and do so before I seek to guide others in what is right. May this be so in the authority of the Lord Jesus.

Holy Spirit of God

On the last day, the climax of the festival, Jesus stood and shouted to the crowds, “Anyone who is thirsty may come to me! Anyone who believes in me may come and drink! For the Scriptures declare, ‘Rivers of living water will flow from his heart.’” (When he said “living water,” he was speaking of the Spirit, who would be given to everyone believing in him. But the Spirit had not yet been given, because Jesus had not yet entered into his glory.) —John 7:37-39

Water– a basic necessity of life. I like to swim and this past winter I have been swimming at an indoor pool. I look forward to soon being back in the lake where it is cool and refreshing to swim because the water in the pool where I have been swimming is very warm and after swimming for an hour I get really thirsty. I gulped down two bottles of water and was still thirsty.

Remember the time when you were really thirsty and a cool drink of water was so refreshing. Water— we need it to survive. Jesus spoke of another “water” we need to survive, not only in this live, but also in the life to come. He was referring to a “living water” and this “water” would flow from person’s heart, a person who truly believes in Jesus. He was speaking about the Holy Spirit of God that would be given to everyone who believes.

Those who believe in Jesus have the Holy Spirit and: 1- The Spirit convicts the world of sin, righteousness, and judgment (John 16:8). 2- The Spirit guides us into all truth (John 16:13). 3- The Spirit regenerates us (John 3:5-8; Titus 3:5). 4- The Spirit glorifies and testifies of Christ (John 15:26; 16:14). 5- The Spirit reveals Christ to us and in us (John 16:14-15). 6- The Spirit leads us (Rom. 8:14; Gal. 5:18; Matt. 4:1; Luke 4:1). 7- The Spirit sanctifies us (2 Thess. 2:13; 1 Pet. 1:2; Rom. 5:16). 8- The Spirit empowers us (Luke 4:14; 24:49; Rom. 15:19; Acts 1:8). 9- The Spirit fills us (Eph. 5:18; Acts 2:4; 4:8, 31; 9:17). 10- The Spirit teaches us to pray (Rom. 8:26-27; Jude 1:20). 11- The Spirit bears witness in us that we are children of God (Rom. 8:16). 12- The Spirit produces in us the fruit or evidence of His work and presence (Gal. 5:22-23). 13- The Spirit distributes spiritual gifts and manifestations (the outshining) of His presence to and through the body (1 Cor. 12:4, 8-10; Heb. 2:4). 14- The Spirit anoints us for ministry (Luke 4:18; Acts 10:38). 15- he Spirit washes and renews us (Titus 3:5). 16- The Spirit brings unity and oneness to the body (Eph. 4:3; 2:14-18). Here the Holy Spirit plays the same role that He plays in the Godhead. The Spirit is the life that unites Father and Son. The Spirit plays the same role in the church. When the Holy Spirit is operating in a group of people, He unites them in love. Therefore, a sure evidence of the Holy Spirit working in a group is Love and Unity. Not signs and wonders (those are seasonal and can be counterfeited). 17- The Spirit is our guarantee and deposit of the future resurrection (2 Cor. 1:22; 2 Cor. 5:5). 18- The Spirit seals us unto the day of redemption (Eph. 1:13; 4:30). 19- The Spirit sets us free from the law of sin and death (Rom. 8:2). 20- The Spirit quickens our mortal bodies (Rom. 8:11). 21- The Spirit reveals the deep things of God to us (1 Cor. 2:10). 22- The Spirit reveals what has been given to us from God (1 Cor. 2:12). 23- The Spirit dwells in us (Rom. 8:9; 1 Cor. 3:16; 2 Tim. 1:14; John 14:17). 24- The Spirit speaks to, in, and through us (1 Cor. 12:3; 1 Tim. 4:1; Rev. 2:11; Heb 3:7; Matt. 10:20; Acts 2:4; 8:29; 10:19; 11:12, 28; 13:2; 16:6,7; 21:4,11). 25- The Spirit is the agent by which we are baptized into the body of Christ (1 Cor. 12:13). 26- The Spirit brings liberty (2 Cor. 3:17). 27- The Spirit transforms us into the image of Christ (2 Cor. 3:18). 28- The Spirit cries in our hearts, “Abba, Father” (Gal. 4:6). 29- The Spirit enables us to wait (Gal. 5:5). 30- The Spirit supplies us with Christ (Phil. 1:19, KJV). 31- The Spirit grants everlasting life (Gal. 6:8). 32- The Spirit gives us access to God the Father (Eph. 2:18). 33- The Spirit makes us (corporately) God’s habitation (Eph. 2:22). 34- The Spirit reveals the mystery of God to us (Eph. 3:5). 35- The Spirit strengthens our spirits (Eph. 3:16). 36- The Spirit enables us to obey the truth (1 Pet. 1:22). 37- The Spirit enables us to know that Jesus abides in us (1 John 3:24; 4:13). 38- The Spirit confesses that Jesus came in the flesh (1 John 4:2). 39- The Spirit says “Come, Lord Jesus” along with the bride (Rev. 22:17). 40- The Spirit dispenses God’s love into our hearts (Rom. 5:5). 41- The Spirit bears witness to the truth in our conscience (Rom. 9:1). 42- The Spirit teaches us (1 Cor. 2:13; John 14:26). 43- The Spirit gives us joy (1 Thess. 1:6). 44- The Spirit enables some to preach the gospel (1 Pet. 1:12). 45- The Spirit moves us (2 Pet. 1:21). 46- The Spirit knows the things of God (1 Cor. 2:11). 47- The Spirit casts out demons (Matt. 12:28). 48- The Spirit brings things to our remembrance (John 14:26). 49- The Spirit comforts us (Acts 9:31). 50- The Spirit makes some overseers in the church and sends some out to the work of church planting [through the body] (Acts 20:28; 13:2). http://frankviola.org/2010/11/18/50-things-the-holy-spirit-does/

Thank You Father for giving us Your Holy Spirit upon trusting and receiving the Lord Jesus!

MEN ARE MEN AND WOMEN ARE WOMEN

Take courage and be a man.… —I Kings 2:2

A man is a man is a man and a woman is a woman is a woman. People can play with words and say they are something they are not, but a person is either a man or a woman. This is seen in so many ways— physically of course, but also mentally. Why is it that almost 95% of those who work at daycares and in early childhood learning are women? I will tell you why. It is because men are not designed to spend that much time with young children. Women carry a child in the womb for 9 months and have a bond with the child that men just do not have. Women are more capable to work with young children than men are. That is a simple fact. If you want to tell me I’m wrong, then tell my why there are 95% of women working with young children.

Women have children and guys cannot unless they have some major medical and unnatural procedures done. How is it that something so simple, and it is, has become so confused in our culture? Men are to be men and women are to be women. Yes, it is confusion and perversion. People can beat around the bush on this, but these are the facts. The thinking process in many people has become warped and they “suppress the truth by their wickedness” (Romans 1:18).

Here’s what God’s Word says about it— “Don’t you realize that those who do wrong will not inherit the Kingdom of God? Don’t fool yourselves. Those who indulge in sexual sin, or who worship idols, or commit adultery, or are male prostitutes, or practice homosexuality, or are thieves, or greedy people, or drunkards, or are abusive, or cheat people—none of these will inherit the Kingdom of God” (I Corinthians 6:9-10). Notice, “male prostitutes, or practice homosexuality” are part of a list of sins mentioned. It is a sin among other sins and the other sins in this list will do the same thing that homosexuality will do. It will keep a person out of heaven as much as those other sins do!

I am a man. God created me a man and I have no desire to be a girl or act like a girl. I am grateful that God created women and thankful for women who act like women. Please don’t ask me to believe in something that the Lord God Almighty has stated is wrong. If you do, your battle is not with me, but with Him!

Dear Father, thank You for Your wonderful design for women and men. Oh, please help those who have wrong thinking in this area and are confused. Please give me wisdom to encourage all people according to Your plan and purposes. May this be done lovingly in the Holy Spirit and in the authority of Jesus my Lord.

Aaahhhh

“The Spirit of the Lord speaks through me; his words are upon my tongue. The God of Israel spoke. The Rock of Israel said to me: ‘The one who rules righteously, who rules in the fear of God, is like the light of morning at sunrise, like a morning without clouds, like the gleaming of the sun on new grass after rain.’ —II Samuel 23:2-4

The sky is clear and blue this morning with the sun shining brightly. I do not see any clouds in the sky. The spring grass is a dark green with dew upon it. It is a beautiful morning, a peaceful morning— a morning that brings joy and an “aaahhhhh.” It is a pleasant morning.

So it is when a person in leadership leads from a proper perspective of Who God is and an understanding of themselves. For a leader to lead in such a way that he desires to please God above all else is like the type of morning describe above. That type of morning brings peace and joy and so will the leader who has a proper perspective on himself and God. Proverbs 29:2 clearly defines this for us— “When the righteous thrive, the people rejoice; when the wicked rule, the people groan.”

Look at leadership from the highest offices in the land to the lowest levels of leadership in the land and you will know whether one is serving to please God or to please self. Then we have to ask ourselves as well— “Am I living to please God or to please self. Am I like the morning describe above or a description that does not bring such a pleasant response?”

Dear Father, please help me to live in such a way that I bring peace and joy to others and not turmoil and sadness. May it be so in the power of the Holy Spirit and in the authority of Jesus.

EQUAL!

So the Jewish leaders tried all the harder to find a way to kill him. For he not only broke the Sabbath, he called God his Father, thereby making himself equal with God. —John 5:18

Original Word: ἴσος, η, ον
Part of Speech: Adjective
Transliteration: isos
Phonetic Spelling: (ee’-sos)
Short Definition: equal, identical
Definition: equal, equivalent, identical. http://biblehub.com/greek/2470.htm

This verse above and others (John 1:1; Colossians 1:15-18; Hebrews 1:1-14; I John 1:1-2), show us that the Son is equal to the Father. The Jewish people understood what He was saying in the verse above and wanted to stone Him for it. They wanted to stone Him again in John 10:31-33—“Again his Jewish opponents picked up stones to stone him, but Jesus said to them, “I have shown you many good works from the Father. For which of these do you stone me?” “We are not stoning you for any good work,” they replied, “but for blasphemy, because you, a mere man, claim to be God.” So it was in John 8:56-59 —“Your father Abraham rejoiced at the thought of seeing my day; he saw it and was glad.” “You are not yet fifty years old,” they said to him, “and you have seen Abraham!” “Very truly I tell you,” Jesus answered, “before Abraham was born, I am!” At this, they picked up stones to stone him, but Jesus hid himself, slipping away from the temple grounds.

How amazing is it that Jesus, God in the flesh (John 1:14), equal to the Father, was willing to come to this planet, take the punishment for our sins on the cross, die and rise again from the dead so that we could be saved from our sin. Truly, how great the love of God is for us (I John 4:7-16). Let us ponder anew that the Creator and Sustainer of all things… loves us! Bask in that reality!

Dear Father in heaven, I marvel at Who Jesus is and how that You sent Him to this planet to take on a body, live among us, die for us, rise again for us that we could be forgiven of our sin, live for Him now and be with Him in glory one day. Oh, thank You for Your great love for us. May joy fill my heart continually over knowing this and may I live a life of gratitude.