ALL EXISTENCE IS IN HIS HANDS

ALL EXISTENCE IS IN HIS HANDS

 Of a truth, God will not do wickedly, and the Almighty will not pervert justice. Who gave him charge over the earth, and who laid on him the whole world? If he should set his heart to it and gather to himself his spirit and his breath, all flesh would perish together, and man would return to dust. —Job 34:12-15

            God cannot do wickedness. This is against His very character. He is holy and pure, righteous and just. There is no darkness in Him. Nor does the Almighty pervert justice. On the contrary, He is justice and truth. He is so far above man— perfect in character, eternal in existence, all powerful, knows everything everywhere at all times. Yes, He is so far beyond us that we could not know Him unless He revealed Himself in our conscience, in His Creation, in His Son, in His Word and in the presence of His Holy Spirit. But He has done all this so we could know Him! We wants us to know Him! He wants relationship with us who have rebelled against Him! He loves us!

Nobody gave Him permission or granted Him to be over all the earth. He needs no input from anybody. “The earth is the LORD’s, and the fullness thereof, the world and all who dwell therein” (Psalm 24:7). He is the Creator of all and the sustainer of all (Colossians 1:16-17). It would be a small thing for Him to “gather to himself his spirit and his breath” and if He did that “all flesh would perish together, and man would return to dust.” Instead all that He has revealed to us He has done so that we would call on His Name for relationship.

Our life is in His hands and we can trust Him fully even when we do not understand what is going on in our lives. When we don’t understand we need to be careful what we say. Instead we are to “commit (ourselves) to (our) faithful Creator and continue to do good” (I Peter 4:19).  Yes, let us continue to do good even in those times that are difficult. As Peter said, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life” (John 6:68). We are safe in His hands! (John 10:27-30).  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XIpnW3rtRQ4

Dear Father I know I can trust You fully. Oh that I would do so! And may I do so by the power of Your Holy Spirit and in the authority of Jesus. Yes, may it be so!

HE TRULY WISE PERSON

THE TRULY WISE PERSON

I said, ‘Let days speak, and many years teach wisdom.’ But it is the spirit in man, the breath of the Almighty, that makes him understand. It is not the old who are wise, nor the aged who understand what is right. —Job 32:7-9

            Just because a person is aged does not mean that person has godly wisdom.   As we have already seen that the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom and knowledge (Proverbs 1:7, 29; 9:10).     If a person truly fears the Lord then they will depart from evil and hate it (Job 28:28; Proverbs 8:13). They will have a real desire to live for Him and not for themselves (II Corinthians 5:15). So do you want to know who a wise person is? Look for a person who truly fears and loves the Lord and you will find that person.

            It is not age alone that causes a person to be wise. But when a person has a love relationship with the Lord which would include a love for people (Matthew 22:37-40), then you can depend on him being taught by God and that God is giving him understanding (Isaiah 50:4). The Almighty is showing that God-fearing, God-loving, people-loving person what is right. Yes, that is the person who is wise and their understanding is coming from God. Who do you know that is like that? That is the person you want to spend time with. Are you like that? Then people who are seeking wisdom will want to be with you.

Dear Father, may I be wise in you. I am not wise in myself. You are the One that gives knowledge, wisdom and understanding.   Please help me to have open ears, a willing heart and active obedience. May this be so in the power of Your Holy Spirit and in the authority of Jesus. So be it! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EePCIVJLIbk

IT IS GOD WHO OPENS AND CLOSES DOORS!

IT IS GOD WHO OPENS AND CLOSES DOORS!

They came to the iron gate leading into the city. It opened for them of its own accord. —Acts 12:10

To the angel of the church in Philadelphia write: These are the words of him who is holy and true, who holds the key of David. What he opens no one can shut, and what he shuts no one can open. —Revelation 3:7        

            God is the God of the impossible as man sees it. What man cannot do, God can do. Imagine a locked iron gate opening up all by itself! You don’t have to imagine it because it really happened!

            Think about it. Let’s say you have a heavy metal door in front of you that is locked and there is no way you can get through it. Then it opens all by itself without you or anyone else touching it.  

            Nothing is impossible with God (Luke 1:37). He who created all things surely can open a door and do anything else He desires to do. Is God asking you to do something that is beyond your capability? What He asks you to do He will do even when you do not understand how it will be done. He wants you to do what you can do through Him and He will take care of the door that seems so locked and secure from your perspective and open it! It is true— “What he opens no one can shut, and what he shuts no one can open.” So… the door is locked, shut tightly before you, but He is asking you to walk through it. Will you?   What do you do first? You pray and then start walking toward that door with expectation. He who has asked you to walk through the door will open it when you get to it… but you have to get to it. So walk and expect it will open. The door God has called you to walk through He will open for you. “What He opens no man can shut.” So get going!

Dear Father whatever door You call me to that looks impossible from my perspective, help me to walk toward it and expect You to open it as You desire. I know that what door You call me to walk through You will open. Now… may I walk toward it in the power of Your Holy Spirit and in the authority of Jesus.   So be it!

FEAR THE LORD!

 FEAR THE LORD!

Behold, the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom, and to turn away from evil is understanding. —Job 28:28

Now let the fear of the LORD be on you. Judge carefully, for with the LORD our God there is no injustice or partiality or bribery. —II Chronicles 19:7

The fear of the Lord is pure, enduring forever. —Psalm 19:9

Then they will call to me but I will not answer; they will look for me but will not find me, since they hated knowledge and did not choose to fear the Lord. —Proverbs 1:28-29

The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction. —Proverbs 1:7

My son, if you accept my words and store up my commands within you, turning your ear to wisdom and applying your heart to understanding—indeed, if you call out for insight and cry aloud for understanding, and if you look for it as for silver and search for it as for hidden treasure, then you will understand the fear of the Lord and find the knowledge of God. —Proverbs 2:1—5

To fear the LORD is to hate evil; I hate pride and arrogance, evil behavior and perverse speech. —Proverbs 8:13

The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom, and knowledge of the Holy One is understanding. –Proverbs 9:10

The fear of the LORD is a fountain of life, turning a person from the snares of death. —Proverbs 14:27

Wisdom’s instruction is to fear the LORD, and humility comes before honor. —Proverbs 15:33

Through love and faithfulness sin is atoned for; through the fear of the LORD evil is avoided. —Proverbs 16:6

Fear the LORD and the king, my son, and do not join with rebellious officials. —Proverbs 24:21

Since, then, we know what it is to fear the Lord, we try to persuade others. —II Corinthians 5:11

            The “fear of the Lord” is:

  • Wisdom— understanding that causes a departure from evil, a hating of evil and an avoidance of evil
  • Judging right— no injustice or partiality or bribery
  • Pure and endures forever
  • Knowledge loving
  • Instruction loving
  • Knowledge of God and understanding
  • A fountain of life to escape the snares of death
  • Not Rebellious
  • Persuades others

Now I have to ask myself, do I fear the Lord as I should? Do I become overwhelmed with His awesomeness? Am I astounded by Him? Am I awed as to Who He is? Is He truly the top love of my life? Do my actions prove that I have a proper fear of Him? Do my words and actions bear evidence that I truly acknowledge who He is? Is my life lining up with His desires? May it be so!  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m8Qby8TKLME&t=3s

Dear Father may my life bear evidence that I love You and have the proper fear of You. Thank You that this is not a cowering fear, but a fear that desires to imitate You, be a pattern after You. May I do so in the power of Your Holy Spirit and in the authority of Jesus.   So be it!  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EePCIVJLIbk

HE WILL COMPLETE IN YOU WHAT HE WILLS!

HE WILL COMPLETE IN YOU WHAT HE WILLS!

For he will complete what he appoints for me, and many such things are in his mind. —Job 24:14

Being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus. —Philippians 1:6

Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed—not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence—continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose. —Philippians 2:12-13

            What is God doing in your life? What is He asking you to obey? What is He asking you to work out? What is His will that He is working in you? What is He asking you to do to fulfill His good purpose? This is what He has appointed for you and that which He has begun in you He will carry it out to completion. So just obey and be faithful to His desires for you!

            Dear Father oh that I would be sensitive to Your desires and to do them.   May this be so in the power of Your Holy Spirit and in the authority of Jesus. So be it.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eNjZlHARnEk

PEOPLE WHO ARE READY TO HEAR HIS WORD!

PEOPLE WHO ARE READY TO HEAR HIS WORD!


At Caesarea there was a man named Cornelius, a centurion of what was known as the Italian Cohort, a devout man who feared God with all his household, gave alms generously to the people, and prayed continually to God. About the ninth hour of the day he saw clearly in a vision an angel of God come in and say to him, “Cornelius.” And he stared at him in terror and said, “What is it, Lord?” And he said to him, “Your prayers and your alms have ascended as a memorial before God. And now send men to Joppa and bring one Simon who is called Peter. He is lodging with one Simon, a tanner, whose house is by the sea.” …”And they said, “Cornelius, a centurion, an upright and God-fearing man, who is well spoken of by the whole Jewish nation, was directed by a holy angel to send for you to come to his house and to hear what you have to say.” —Acts 10:1-6, 22

            How many around us may be like Cornelius and those of his household— ready to hear the gospel? Who is it that God is putting on your heart to share the gospel with? Will you obey? Will you go to them? Remember, this is kingdom of Light and a kingdom of darkness issue; turning people to the power of God from the power of Satan; seeing them saved from their sin and saved to a relationship with God through Jesus (Acts 26:16-18). So will you go to them?

            Cornelius was a “devout man who feared God with all his household” and yet he was not in a saving relationship through Jesus. He needed to hear the gospel along with his whole household. Our Lord would move Peter to go share the message. Will you and I ask God to show us those who are ready to hear and go to them? (Romans 10:13-15).

O Lord, who is around me that will hear the message, that is ready to hear the message. Dear Father we are told through Your Word that nobody can come to Jesus unless You draw them. Please Father show me who You are drawing, those ready to come to Jesus. Show me and then may I be obedient to share Your Word with them. May this be so in the power of Your Holy Spirit and in the authority of Jesus. So may it be!

Let’s be obedient disciples. That is our Lord’s desire for us— https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=It_xQ4NYtDQ

LOST IT ALL— BUT NOT GOD!

LOST IT ALL— BUT NOT GOD!

Behold, I cry out, ‘Violence!’but I am not answered; I call for help, but there is no justice. He has walled up my way, so that I cannot pass, and he has set darkness upon my paths. He has stripped from me my glory and taken the crown from my head. He breaks me down on every side, and I am gone, and my hope has he pulled up like a tree. He has kindled his wrath against me and counts me as his adversary. His troops come on together; they have cast up their siege ramp against me and encamp around my tent. “He has put my brothers far from me, and those who knew me are wholly estranged from me. My relatives have failed me, my close friends have forgotten me. The guests in my house and my maidservants count me as a stranger; I have become a foreigner in their eyes. I call to my servant, but he gives me no answer; I must plead with him with my mouth for mercy. My breath is strange to my wife, and I am a stench to the children of my own mother. Even young children despise me; when I rise they talk against me. All my intimate friends abhor me, and those whom I loved have turned against me. My bones stick to my skin and to my flesh, and I have escaped by the skin of my teeth. Have mercy on me, have mercy on me, O you my friends, for the hand of God has touched me!For I know that my Redeemer lives, and at the last he will stand upon the earth. And after my skin has been thus destroyed, yet in my flesh I shall see God. —Job 19:7-21, 25-26

            Job has so many emotions going on at this point in his life. He cries out and calls for help, but he hears no answer.   He believes it is God who has “walled up his way… and set darkness upon” his paths. That He is breaking him in His wrath, pulling him up like an adversary.   When all was well in his life those who knew him wanted to be in relationship with him, but now that he has lost everything these same people don’t want anything to do with him. They are leaving him alone in his misery.

            His brothers are far from him; his relatives have failed him; his close friends have forgotten him; guests in his house and his maidservants count him as a stranger, a foreigner; his servant won’t even respond to him; he is strange to his wife; his siblings see him as a stench; young children despise him, talk against him; his intimate friends abhor him; those he loved turned against him.  

Tell me, what is your problem? Everyone is against Job. He even believes God is against Him. Through all this Job still says, “For I know that my Redeemer lives, and at the last he will stand upon the earth. And after my skin has been thus destroyed, yet in my flesh I shall see God.” 

Beware that you and I do not confuse satanic/demonic attacks as being attacks from God. True, God is Sovereign over all as we saw in the first chapter of Job. He is working out His plans and purposes even through Satan’s destructive ploys. His time is short and God has His purposes even now for allowing the Devil to exist. But that time will be coming to an end once and for all! Until then, let us continue to keep our “eyes fixed on Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith” (Hebrews 12:1-2). https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bfveawSAHJA

Yes, dear Father may I keep my eyes on the prize— forever with Jesus in glory. I know that is not too far in the future. Until then please help me to serve You faithfully in the power of Your Holy Spirit and in the authority of Jesus. So be it!

HELPING THE HURTING

HELP THE HURTING

For when a few years have come I shall go the way from which I shall not return. —Job 16:22

My spirit is broken; my days are extinct; the graveyard is ready for me. —Job 17:1

            Job is in so much emotional pain from his losses.   He knows his time on earth is short and is lived only once. He is a broken man. Not only was his animals and most of his servants destroyed, but his 7 sons and 3 daughters all died together at the same time in a storm. He feels like his time on earth is done and that the grave is ready to receive him. His heartache is unbearable and his friends add to his misery.

            There are people all around us who are broken. They do not need “friends” like the ones Job had. No, they need someone who will listen; someone who is more concerned for them than their own talk; someone who will serve them and help them in their need; someone who will share the truth of God’s Word in humility; someone who will enter their pain with them. Will you be that person?

            Yes, we live in a broken, fallen, sinful world where there are all kinds of problems. You yourself have experienced your share of difficulties.   Jesus told us this would happen, but that we can have peace in Him and that we are to take courage because He has overcome the world and so have we by our faith in Him (John 16:33; I John 5:1-5).   People need to hear the good news of why Jesus came so they can “come to their senses and escape from the trap of the devil, who has taken them captive to do his will” (II Timothy 2:26). They need to flee from the “destroyer” —Satan and flee to the “Restorer” —Jesus.   But… we need to bring the message to them—

“For there is no difference between Jew and Gentile—the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him, for, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? And how can anyone preach unless they are sent? As it is written: “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!” and “As you (the Father) sent me (Jesus) into the world, I have sent them (us) into the world… I (Jesus) pray also for those who will believe in me through their (our) message” —John 17:18, 20

            So as those sent my Jesus so that others believe as well, let us be faithful in our “going” to make disciples. Let us go to the hurting people of this world and proclaim to them the good news of salvation from sin and salvation to a relationship with our heavenly Father through His Son and then our ability to be empowered by His Holy Spirit to live a life pleasing to Him. Yes… let us go to them! Yes dear Father may this be so in my life by the power of Your Holy Spirit and in the authority of Jesus.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rYQ5yXCc_CA

CLEAN IN CHRIST

CLEAN IN CHRIST

Who can bring a clean thing out of an unclean? There is not one. —Job 14:4

As they traveled along the road and came to some water, the eunuch said, “Look, here is water! What is there to prevent me from being baptized?”  And Philip said, “If you believe with all your heart, you may be baptized.” The eunuch replied, “I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.” And he gave orders to stop the chariot. Then both Philip and the eunuch went down into the water, and Philip baptized him. —Acts 8:36-38

            Only God can make a man clean, whiter than snow— “Come now, let us settle the matter,” says the LORD. “Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool” (Isaiah 1:18). No man can do this for another— “No one can redeem the life of another or give to God a ransom for them— the ransom for a life is costly, no payment is ever enough— so that they should live on forever and not see decay… But God will redeem me from the realm of the dead; he will surely take me to himself.” (Psalm 49:7-8, 15).   What man cannot do, God can do— “For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your ancestors, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect” (I Peter 1:18-19). “To Him who loved us and washed us from our sins in His own blood” (Revelation 1:5). Yes, it is only God who can take “one who is unclean, and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags” (Isaiah 64:6) and make the person and actions clean.

           

            This is what the Ethiopian official experience when Philip told him the good news about Jesus. After he believed he wanted to be baptized as a testimony of this belief— “As they traveled along the road and came to some water, the eunuch said, “Look, here is water! What is there to prevent me from being baptized?” And Philip said, “If you believe with all your heart, you may be baptized.” The eunuch replied, “I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.” And he gave orders to stop the chariot. Then both Philip and the eunuch went down into the water, and Philip baptized him.” Then this official went on his way rejoicing. Rejoicing because he was made clean through the precious blood of Christ and was in relationship now with his Father through Christ, sealed by the Holy Spirit of God (Ephesians 1:13;4:30). His baptism is water was a testimony to this.

 

            Baptism is the first step of the new believer. We are told to make disciples, to baptize them and to teach them to obey and Jesus said His authority to us would be present with us to the end of the age (Matthew 28:19-20).   So have you been obedient and followed Jesus in baptism to bear witness of what He has done in your life? What is the prerequisite for baptism? It is… “If you believe with all your heart, you may be baptized.” And what is it that you are to believe? “I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.” Then you are to be baptized. Have you been baptized since you believed? If not, why not? If not then you are not being obedient to Jesus’ command to be baptized.   If you have not been baptized may you be obedient and do so, showing forth the great an awesome truth that Jesus has made you clean by His finished work at the cross and through His resurrection and that He is coming back!

 

Dear Father thank You for making me clean through the precious blood of Jesus. Out of gratitude may I live faithfully for You in the power of Your Holy Spirit and in the authority of Your Son. May it be so! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4S1ivtB2Pxk

GROPING IN THE DARK

GROPING IN THE DARK

But ask the beasts, and they will teach you; the birds of the heavens, and they will tell you; or the bushes of the earth, and they will teach you; and the fish of the sea will declare to you. Who among all these does not know that the hand of the LORD has done this? In his hand is the life of every living thing and the breath of all mankind. —Job 12:7-10

He makes nations great, and he destroys them; he enlarges nations, and leads them away. He takes away understanding from the chiefs of the people of the earth and makes them wander in a pathless waste. They grope in the dark without light, and he makes them stagger like a drunken man. —Job 12:23-25

            Creation has a better understanding than the majority of men!   Beasts, birds, bushes, fish all declare their Maker speaking loudly to us that our Lord has done this. He is the One who “is the life of every living thing and the breath of all mankind.” Creation makes “plain to them, because God has made it plain to them… For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse” (Romans 1:19-20). 

            The theory of evolution is still a theory, but today people have grasped it as truth. It is their “reason” for not believing the Creator. Even though His Creation cries out His existence people suppress that truth by their wickedness (Romans 1:18). When this happens those claiming to be wise become fools. They worship created things instead of the Creator of those things. They degrade their bodies with sexual immorality and perversions. Their minds are not only darkened, but they are also depraved (Romans 1:18-32). Creation screams God’s design, God’s power and God’s eternal nature, but man does not want to hear that. He desires to be deaf to it.

            So whether an individual or nation men without God “grope in the dark without light, and he makes them stagger like a drunken man.” The understanding of leaders is taken away and they “wander in a pathless waste.”   Wow, this describes where the U.S. is as a nation. It is our Lord God Almighty that “makes nations great, and he destroys them; he enlarges nations, and leads them away.” So many leaders and people of this nation are “groping in the dark without light, and… staggering like a drunken man.”  

            Brother and sister, our commission from our Lord God Almighty has not changed.   We are to be witness and make disciples— regardless of the national climate around us. We are to be the light of the world. This is what we are commanded to be about by our Lord. May we be obedient, faithful followers of Jesus.   Yes, dear Father may this be so in the power of Your Holy Spirit and in the authority of Jesus. So be it!  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BkxoTmKpDcU