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Monday, May 30, 2016

As a Man Thinks . . .

I've been studying Philippians with Jon Courson's audio. I am on chapter three and highly recommend that you listen to it.

I've been thinking about the heart and mind since this weekend and listening to his teaching. In Jeremiah 17:9 -10 we are told,

“The heart is deceitful above all things,
And desperately wicked;
Who can know it?

I, the Lord, search the heart,
I test the mind,
Even to give every man according to his ways,
According to the fruit of his doings.

Let's go back to verse five in Jeremiah (5-8): 
Cursed is the man who trusts in man
And makes flesh his strength,
Whose heart departs from the Lord.
For he shall be like a shrub in the desert,
And shall not see when good comes,
But shall inhabit the parched places in the wilderness,
In a salt land which is not inhabited.
Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord,
And whose hope is the Lord.
For he shall be like a tree planted by the waters,
Which spreads out its roots by the river,
And will not fear when heat comes;
But its leaf will be green,
And will not be anxious in the year of drought,
Nor will cease from yielding fruit.
The blessed man reminds me of John 15, when we believe in Jesus as our LORD and Savior and become followers of Christ, His Holy  Spirit comes and lives in us and we abide in Him. God provides and cares for us. When the heat comes, we have the Living Water coursing through our very being keeping us refreshed and alive.

At the beginning of every chapter Courson makes a statement, "One of the most important components in understanding joyful, successful Christianity is this: You cannot change your heart — but you can change your mind. Conversely, God can change your heart, but He won't change your mind. Therefore, if I choose to change the way I think about a given situation, God will change my heart to follow suit. But if I do not choose to change my thoughts, God will not change my heart.

That is why the wisest man on the face of the earth literally said,
'As a man thinketh, in his heart so is he,' (Proverbs 23:7).
When people say, 'I'm so depressed, so discouraged, so distraught,' the only workable solution we can offer them is to tell them to change the way they think, for as they do, God will work in their hearts in due season.

Even though he was in prison, Paul could rejoice and tell us to do so as well, for he was thinking clearly, singularly, rightly." This was taken from BLB but I listened to it on the above link under Courson.

I've had to listen to that more than once and I've thought on it quite a bit.

I decided to look for some Bible verses related to "Thoughts and Mind "

I see this verse in a new way,  

"Keep your heart with all vigilance,
for from it flow the springs of life."
How do we keep our heart?
"Keep your mind on whatever is true, pure, right and holy,
friendly and proper. Don't ever stop thinking about what is truly worth while and worthy of praise." (Philippians 4:8 -paraphrase)
 What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me— practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you. (v.9)
You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you. (Isaiah 26:3)
Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.
(Romans 12:2)
Rejoice in the LORD always and again I say rejoice! .... Do not worry about anything, instead pray about everything. With praise and thanksgiving present your request to God and the peace that passes all understanding will guard your heart and mind through Christ Jesus, our Lord. (Philippians 4:4-7)
I will stop there. If you look at the link there are so many verses related to the mind and thoughts.
God's Word is alive and I am constantly learning and growing.
I am so thankful for my Bible and all that God is showing me.
But more than that, I am thankful that He is alive and
desires a relationship with me. =)

Sunday, May 29, 2016

Love and Humility Recommended


What stuck out to me in Philippians chapter two is submission to God’s Lordship; yielding to His authority in our life.

Without sharing the details, recently there were some things that were said about me, they laughed and poked fun and my feelings were hurt.

In this chapter I am reminded that Jesus was a man of no reputation (v5). So, why should I care what others think of me, even if they are close to me.

Pride can sneak up on you when you least expect it --but that is hindsight. I don’t know that I handled the above mentioned situation very well: I walked away from them. It was either that or try not to cry. However, leaving didn’t help my hurt feelings or keep the tears from falling. It took a some time. I eventually prayed and gave it over to God. Basically, I surrendered to Him. I know that He allowed it into my life and by doing that I chose to grow from it rather than become bitter. I chose to change the way I was thinking and decided to pray about it.

What Jon Courson said really struck home with me. I couldn’t change the way I felt in my heart, but I could change the way I was thinking. I could surrender to God and give it to Him or I could continue to walk around with hurt feelings.

I must say that even though I have peace and joy in Christ. It still hurts. It makes me want to be more quiet and simply let God take care of the rest. I want to listen more to Him and speak when He directs me to or when I am spoken to. More of Jesus, less of me.

Recap: Jesus is more than enough, the key to joy is to think right, and I want to make Father God happy.

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Here's My Heart, I Trust You

This morning while praying for my persecuted family, my brothers and sisters in the LORD. I wanted God to save them, comfort them, protect them. 
God lead me to these verses: John 20:5, John 8:10, and John 12. In these verses I saw that the disciple waited, he didn't rush in. Jesus waited and did not rush to condemn or judge the woman caught in adultery. In John 12 verse twenty-five jumped out,
"He who LOVES his life WILL lose it, and he who HATES his life in this world will keep it for eternal life. If anyone serves Me, let him Follow Me; and where I am, there My servant will be also."
This last verse reminded me of Luke 9:23-24:
If anyone desires to come after Me (follow Me), let him deny himself, and take daily and follow Me. For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will save it.
Further down in John twelve verse twenty-seven, Jesus said, "What shall I say? 'Father save Me from this hour?' But for this purpose I came to this hour. Father glorify your name."

I believe God is reminding me that Father will be glorified through us. We need to wait for Him to lead and direct us. We must also trust that He indeed still leads His people today. Things don't just happen! God's children don't simply fall into the enemy's hands. But God allows bad things to happen to draw people to Him. Just like God lead Jesus and allowed Christ to die on the cross for our sins. Jesus Christ chose to do this willingly and so that Father would be glorified.  What a humble servant! What an awesome God!! What an example of obedience and sacrifice!!
I want to live like that. I want my life to be a reflection of HIM and to glorify Father with all that I am. I know some of my sisters and brothers did not choose to be persecuted or the trials that they have gone through or are going through, but they accept God's will and trust that He will be their strength and comfort. He is their hope!
I've heard it said that God won't give you more than you can bear. I don't believe that. I think that He does give us more than we can bear to make us choose: total dependency on HIM or relying on me to save myself.

 Followers of Christ choose to deny our right to self preservation. We choose take up our cross daily which no only represents Christ's forgiveness, but his submission to God. Then we follow Christ wherever He leads us.

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Israel's Song Before Entering the Promised Land

Today in Deuteronomy I read the song that Moses was given by God to teach the children of Israel. It was long, I had to read it more than once because I lost my concentration and began to zone out. So, I started over and read it aloud. How did he put that to music?

In the song we see where the younger generation is to ask the older generation about all that God had brought them through.

Who can you share with, about all the things that God has brought you through?

 This morning I used to look up the meaning of words the site makes reference to KJV. So, I’ve posted two translations of verse fifteen. You’ll see why as you read on.

“But Jeshurun grew fat and kicked;
You grew fat, you grew thick,
You are obese!
Then he forsook God who made him,
And scornfully esteemed the Rock of his salvation.”
“But Jeshurun waxed fat, and kicked:
thou art waxen fat, thou art grown thick,
thou art covered with fatness;
then he forsook God which made him,
and lightly esteemed the Rock of his salvation. “(KJV)

 Jeshuran, what does that mean? I found out that it means upright one; Israel. While I was on that verse  I looked up “waxed fat”. I looked at a box titled "Gesenius' Hebrew-Chaldee Lexicon" and it read, “to cover, to cover with fat, metaphor i.e. to cover the heart as it were with fat, to render it callous so as not to heed the words of the prophet…"

 “Him, he lightly esteemed” has many different meanings, but again I read that box’s description: to be, or to become withered, faded, used of leaves and flowers falling off from being faded. This makes me think of a plant without water. Just like plants need water, we need the Living Water (Jesus).

I looked up a few other words as well, but I won’t bore you with all that. I rewrote this verse so, I can understand better what it is saying.

But Israel, the upright one, grew callous in her heart, and kicked at God:

Israel, your heart is callous, you are obese and you won’t listen;

you are covered with fatness from being completely satisfied, filled with food: you are a gluten.

Then you abandoned and left your God who made you;

you are fading, withering without the Rock who gave you water in the dessert, the Rock of your salvation.

After breaking that verse down, it is powerful what God was telling Israel. He was their source and when they get to this Promised Land they were going to forget Him. Still He took them in and met all their needs. God knows our heart and what will happen in our life. He is not bound by time like we are.

LORD, may I never be like that! God, don’t let me become satisfied with the things of this world. Let me have an insatiable desire, a need for more of You all the days of my life. Never let me be content with where I am in my walk with You; Father, don’t let me become discouraged, but encouraged to seek hard after You. I know the things, food, entertainment of this world mean nothing compared to You. I do not want my heart to be filled up with anything but You! You tell us to come to You and not to labor for that which does not satisfy. Oh, LORD, I want to delight myself in what You have for me. Thank You for the everlasting covenant that you have provided for me in Jesus. Thank you for loving me and for Your Word. Draw the lost and hurting to Jesus, give them eyes to see and ears to hear, unblind their minds and let them see the truth found only in Jesus. Father,  send workers into the harvest, and use me LORD. Let my light shine brightly for You to those you have placed in my life each and every day. In Jesus’ name I ask all these things amen.

Sunday, May 22, 2016

A Matter of the Heart

I have been thinking about circumcision of the heart; the circumcision represented the covenant with God. So, if you were not circumcised, you had no covenant with God.
Genesis17:14, "And the uncircumcised male child, who is not circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin, that person shall be cut off from his people; he has broken My covenant."
See what
Chuck Smith has to say about this verse: 
God established the rite of circumcision, which became, of course, the most important rite as far as the Jews were concerned. It is a badge and a mark of the people that have been separated unto God. And the spiritual significance is that of people who have cut off the fleshly life and are living after the Spirit. Now they made the mistake, as people so often do, concerning rituals as identifying the ritual for the reality.

The reality is a matter of heart. God wanted a people that were separated from their flesh in their heart. People who were spiritual and spiritually minded who would serve God in the Spirit. It was to be symbolized by the cutting away of the flesh. But it was really a spiritual thing that God was seeking people who would cut away the fleshly mind and the fleshly heart and would serve God in the Spirit. But they began to identify the physical rite for the reality of the experience of the heart and thus made the physical rite totally meaningless.

So if you would go through the rite of circumcision and yet still within your heart were living after your flesh, walking after the flesh, the fact that you had gone through the rite meant nothing. Now if you had gone through the cutting away of the flesh in the heart, then again the rite meant nothing. For God was really searching for the heart and the work in the heart. Same with baptism in the church. For many it's become a meaningless rite. They think, "Well, the important thing is go down and be baptized". Baptism doesn't save you. Not that that is the washing away of the filth of the flesh. You can go down and be baptized a dozen times and not be saved. The rite of baptism doesn't save. It's the inward work of the Spirit within your heart that really counts.

And so here God established an outward rite which was to speak of an inward experience, the cutting away of the fleshly heart, the heart after the flesh and it was to be God desired that people whose heart was after the Spirit and after Him. And so here is where the rite was established and God ordered it for all of His children, all that were in his house, all of the servants, all of those that have been brought into the house of Abraham. It was something that was to be done unto Abraham and to his descendants after him on the eighth day of the male child. The rite of circumcision was to be fulfilled.
 Acts 7:51

God is seeking such people who will cut away the fleshly mind and the fleshly heart and serve Him in the Spirit and in Truth.

But the hour is come, and now is, when the true worshippers will worship the Father in spirit and in truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him. God is Spirit, and His worshippers must
worship Him in spirit and in truth.
(John 4:23-24).

I find it interesting that Jesus was speaking to a Samaritan woman when He said that. It is just another conformation that He is seeking true worshippers -male or female.

Our life should is an act of worship. The question is, "Whom or what are you worshipping?"

"Worship is to honor with extravagant love and extreme submission" (Webster's Dictionary, 1828).

The choice is up to us how we live our life. God loves us so much! He could have made us in such a way that we loved Him and Him alone. But He gave us a free will. When we stop to think about all that Jesus did and how he gave His life for us to pay the price for our sins(Rom.6:23) doesn't that make you want to give your life to Him? We deserve to be cursed, put to death, and separated from God. But Jesus took our place so that we could spend eternity with God.

Jesus' life is an example of a true act of worship.  Shouldn't we as followers of Christ live our life in such a way that when people look at us, they not only see our extreme love for God, but also see us living a life in complete submission to Father God?

Listen here

Friday, May 20, 2016

The Word, Circumcision, and Heart Condtion

These are the ponderings of this child of God on Deuteronomy 30.

Two verses stuck out to me in this chapter: 14 and 6.
"But the word is very near you. It is in your mouth and in your heart, so that you can do it." (v.14) In reading that, I was reminded of John 1:1-5, "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.  He was in the beginning with God.  All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made.  In Him was life, and the life was the light of men.  And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it."
The is very near you.

God gave Israel His word and they knew what was expected; it was basically an all or nothing deal. Listen and be blessed or disobey and reap what you sow, cursed. In John we see, God gave us Jesus (the Word) and we as followers of Christ know what is expected, we can read and meditate (think) on the Word (Bible).....Did you get that? The Word...God's Word.....Jesus.....Bible.
The next verse in Deuteronomy that stood out came after the fact that if you returned to the Lord with all your heart and all your soul AND obey His voice, then circumcision:
6And the LORD your God will circumcise your heart and the heart of your offspring, so that you will love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul, that you may live.
This made me think of something I'd read in the New Testament before. So, I hunted and found these verses:
Cicumcising the Heart
Circumcising the Heart
  • Romans 2: 25-29, "For circumcision is indeed profitable if you keep the law; but if you are a breaker of the law, your circumcision has become uncircumcision. Therefore, if an uncircumcised man keeps the righteous requirements of the law, will not his uncircumcision be counted as circumcision?  And will not the physically uncircumcised, if he fulfills the law, judge you who, even with your written code and circumcision, are a transgressor of the law? For he is not a Jew who is one outwardly, nor is circumcision that which is outward in the flesh;  but he is a Jew who is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the Spirit, not in the letter; whose praise is not from men but from God.     
  • Colossians 2:8-23, "See to it that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deception, which are based on human tradition and the spiritual forces of the world rather than on Christ. For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity dwells in bodily form. And you have been made complete in Christ, who is the head over every ruler and authority. In Him you were also circumcised in the putting off of your sinful nature, with the circumcision performed by Christ and not by human hands. And having been buried with Him in baptism, you were raised with Him through your faith in the power of God, who raised Him from the dead. When you were dead in your trespasses and in the uncircumcision of your sinful nature, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our trespasses, having canceled the debt ascribed to us in the decrees that stood against us. He took it away, nailing it to the cross! And having disarmed the rulers and authorities, He made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross. Therefore let no one judge you by what you eat or drink, or with regard to a festival, a New Moon, or a Sabbath. These are a shadow of the things to come, but the body that casts it belongs to Christ. Do not let anyone who delights in false humility and the worship of angels disqualify you with speculation about what he has seen. Such a man is puffed up without basis by his unspiritual mind, and he loses connection to the head, from whom the whole body, supported and knit together by its joints and ligaments, grows as God causes it to grow. If you have died with Christ to the spiritual forces of the world, why, as though you still belonged to the world, do you submit to its regulations: “Do not handle, do not taste, do not touch!”? These will all perish with use, because they are based on human commands and teachings. Such restrictions indeed have an appearance of wisdom, with their self-prescribed worship, their false humility, and their harsh treatment of the body; but they are of no value against the indulgence of the flesh. 
The last verse was Old Testament:

Jeremiah 4:4
“Circumcise yourselves to the LORD
And remove the foreskins of your heart,
Men of Judah and inhabitants of Jerusalem,
Or else My wrath will go forth like fire
And burn with none to quench it,
Because of the evil of your deeds.”

 I still have a lot to soak in and glean from these verses. Too much to digest now. Glad today is Friday and I have the weekend to pray and soak in all of this. :)

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Finding Life and Favor

"The LORD has not given you a heart to perceive and eyes to see and ears to hear to this very day." (Deuteronomy 29:4) "The secret things belong to the LORD our God, but those things which are revealed belongs to us and to our children forever..." (29)
Wisdom is everlasting and whoever finds Wisdom finds life and obtains favor from the LORD. But whoever sins against Wisdom wrongs his own soul; all those who hate wisdom love death. (Proverbs 8)

While reading Deuteronomy this morning I see that the LORD reminded them once again of His faithfulness. I also learned that Israel could not see, hear or perceive what God had done for them...even when Jesus came to earth. 

After reading Proverbs 8, I learned that Wisdom cries out to us and wants us to understand. While I pondered this I perceived that Wisdom is the Holy Spirit:
"The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom
and the knowledge of the Holy One is understanding."

How blessed are God's children who love and fear Him and have His Holy Spirit living within them to supply all their needs!!

In John 14:15-28, Jesus said,
If you love Me, keep My commandments.
 16 And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever 
 17 the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive,
 because it neither sees Him nor knows Him;
but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you. 
18 I will not leave you orphans; I will come to you.
19 “A little while longer and the world will see Me no more, but you will see Me. Because I live, you will live also. 
 20 At that day you will know that I am in My Father,
and you in Me, and I in you. 
 21 He who has My commandments and keeps them,
it is he who loves Me.
And he who loves Me will be loved by My Father,
and I will love him and manifest Myself to him.”
22 Judas (not Iscariot) said to Him, “Lord, how is it that You will manifest Yourself to us, and not to the world?”
23 Jesus answered and said to him,
“If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word;
and My Father will love him,
and We will come to him and make Our home with him. 
 24 He who does not love Me does not keep My words;
and the word which you hear is not Mine
but the Father’s who sent Me.
25 “These things I have spoken to you
while being present with you. 
26 But the Helper, the Holy Spirit,
whom the Father will send in My name,
He will teach you all things,
and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you. 
27 Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you;
not as the world gives do I give to you.
Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid. 
 28 You have heard Me say to you,
‘I am going away and coming back to you.’
If you loved Me, you would rejoice because I said,
‘I am going to the Father,’ for My Father is greater than I.
What commandments is Jesus talking about us keeping?
And the two greatest commandments are found in Matthew 22:36-40 and Mark 12:28-31. They say basically the same thing: Love the LORD will all your heart, all your soul, all your mind, and all your strength. This is the first and greatest (If you were to look at the ten commandments, this a summary of the first four). The second is like it, love your neighbor as yourself (a summary of the other six commandments) and "on these two commandments hangs all the Law and the Prophets."

In John 15:12-13 Jesus definitely summarizes the second  commandment, "This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you....Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one's life for his friends." It could also be seen as  a summary of the first commandment as well. Because, as a follower of Christ, we count the cost of being a disciple and then lay down our life (die to our self) to follow our Savior and greatest Friend, Jesus.

Being a disciple isn't easy, but it will be worth it.

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

The Road Less Traveled...

“And all these blessings shall come upon you and overtake you, because you obey the voice of the Lord your God:” (Deut. 28:2)

God promised blessings to Israel for their obedience but curses for their  disobedience.
Today I have been trying to wrap my mind around how Israel could walk away from God and the blessings of keeping the law versus the curses. Time and again we see men who did this throughout the Bible. I can’t help but wonder, “Did they KNOW God?” They knew about Him and saw all that He had done, but did they have an intimate relationship like Moses or Joshua or King David? However, even they messed up at some point and time (striking the rock, making a deal not to harm the neighbors who pretended to come from a distant land, and  Bathsheba). But God still loved them.

Don’t we all mess up or is it just me? I think that all of us will continue to be tempted to do wrong throughout our lives, but it is our choice to walk with the Spirit or in the flesh; to abide in Christ or try to thrive on our own.  

Paul summarizes this struggle: “So then, I myself in my mind am a slave to God’s law, but in the sinful nature a slave to the law of sin” (Romans 7:25). Thankfully Paul didn't stop there. At the beginning of Romans eight he points out we are unable to defeat sin in our lives, God did this by sending Jesus to die on the cross.  We have been set free and are no longer condemned by our sin!  We are free to live our lives in accord to God's Spirit.  (Romans 8:1-4 : There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death. For what the law could not do in that it was weak through the flesh, God did by sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, on account of sin: He condemned sin in the flesh, that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.)

The Holy Spirit helps keep us from sinning (Romans 8:11-12) When we chose to live and listen to the Spirit, it is possible to turn away from sinning and walking in the flesh. By turning away from sin we are walking in the Spirit. We are walking by faith and not by sight....and we make it our aim to please Him (2 Corinthians 5:7,9b).

Monday, May 16, 2016

Cursed or Blessed

Deuteronomy 27
Moses was going to be leaving soon and it looks like God was starting to set things up to remind Israel of all that He commanded them.  
Once they crossed over the Jordan they were to set up large stones that were to be whitewashed with lime. Then they were to write very plainly ALL the words of the law that God had given them on these stones (Moses tells them this twice). They were to take these stones and build an altar to the LORD without any tools. Next they were to offer burnt offering and peace offerings, and eat and rejoice before the LORD God.
Moses and the priests told Israel, "This day you have become the people of the LORD your God, Therefore you shall obey the voice of the LORD your God and observe His commandments and His statutes which I command you today."
Moses then ordered certain people to stand on Mount Gerzim and bless the people and certain people to stand on Mount Ebal to curse. The Levites were to speak with a loud voice (at the bottom of the two mountains) and say to all the men of Israel the curses and they were to respond with "amen" which means "so be it".
Many of these curses were what would happen if they broke the Laws of God, the Ten Commandments.
15 “Cursed is anyone who makes an idol—a thing detestable to the Lord, the work of skilled hands—and sets it up in secret.” (curse of the second command)
Then all the people shall say, “Amen!”
16 “Cursed is anyone who dishonors their father or mother.” (curse of the fifth command)
Then all the people shall say, “Amen!”
17 “Cursed is anyone who moves their neighbor’s boundary stone.” (curse of the eighth command)
Then all the people shall say, “Amen!”
18 “Cursed is anyone who leads the blind astray on the road.” (possibly a curse of the sixth command)
Then all the people shall say, “Amen!”
19 “Cursed is anyone who withholds justice from the foreigner, the fatherless or the widow.” (curse of the eighth command)
Then all the people shall say, “Amen!”
(The next four appear to be curses of the seventh command )
20 “Cursed is anyone who sleeps with his father’s wife, for he dishonors his father’s bed.”
Then all the people shall say, “Amen!”
21 “Cursed is anyone who has sexual relations with any animal.”
Then all the people shall say, “Amen!”
22 “Cursed is anyone who sleeps with his sister, the daughter of his father or the daughter of his mother.”
Then all the people shall say, “Amen!”
23 “Cursed is anyone who sleeps with his mother-in-law.”
Then all the people shall say, “Amen!”
24 “Cursed is anyone who kills their neighbor secretly.” (curse of the sixth command)
Then all the people shall say, “Amen!”
25 “Cursed is anyone who accepts a bribe to kill an innocent person.”(curse of the sixth command)
Then all the people shall say, “Amen!”
26 “Cursed is anyone who does not uphold the words of this law by carrying them out.”
Then all the people shall say, “Amen!”

"Christ redeemed us from the curse of the Law by becoming a curse for us. For it is written: “Cursed is everyone who is hung on a tree.” He redeemed us so that the blessing promised to Abraham would come to the Gentiles in Christ Jesus, so that by faith we might receive the promise of the Spirit.  (Galatians 3:13-14)

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Not a Request, But a Command

Deuteronomy 26:11-13, 17-19
“So you shall rejoice in every good thing which the LORD your God has given to you and your house, you and the Levite and the stranger who is among you.
“When you have finished laying aside all the tithe of your increase in the third year—the year of tithing—and have given it to the Levite, the stranger, the fatherless, and the widow, so that they may eat within your gates and be filled, then you shall say before the LORD your God: ‘I have removed the holy tithe from my house, and also have given them to the Levite, the stranger, the fatherless, and the widow, according to all Your commandments which You have commanded me; I have not transgressed Your commandments, nor have I forgotten them.
“Today you have proclaimed the LORD to be your God, and that you will walk in His ways and keep His statutes, His commandments, and His judgments, and that you will obey His voice. Also today the LORD has proclaimed you to be His special people, just as He promised you, that you should keep all His commandments, and that He will set you high above all nations which He has made, in praise, in name, and in honor, and that you may be a holy people to the LORD your God, just as He has spoken.”
God commanded Israel to take care of the priest, widows and the fatherless; these were people who could not provide for themselves.  When I think of the state of our nation, I am grieved over how there are those who expect the government to care for them and expect others to foot the bill. When did we stop caring for our own? Noah (Adam) is the father of us all. Should we not love and care for one another?
When did we stop?  Why did we allow them tell us we couldn't pray in school anymore? When I was a child we were allowed a moment of silence after the pledge to the United States flag. Did you know that one of the reason schools were started in the United States was to teach our children to read so they would not be ignorant of the Word of God. But our government has gotten so big that they want to dictate how we should live: seatbelts for all - I made it through my childhood without a seatbelt; you must give services from your own business to whomever wants service -no matter if you agree with their lifestyle or not; and the latest, all public schools are to allow students to use whatever bathroom you identify with -forget the way God made you.  They call wrong right and right wrong.  Why did we let them replace God's Word with tolerance. Do you think God will tolerate this for long?  He is merciful but he will hold everyone accountable for what we do or don't do.

I refuse to be conformed to the mold of this world. But I will continually be transformed by the renewing of my mind through the Word of God (BIBLE).
How can we do what the Bible is says if we don't read it, meditate on it, and do what is says? 
Jesus was more than willing to die for us, even those who were not born yet. Jesus told us to count the cost of following Him. How willing are you to die to your selfish desires and live solely for Him?
If we aren't impacting the world around us, you have to ask yourself, "Is the world impacting and changing me?" We can't bury ourselves in distractions or bury ourselves in technology. We must seek God with all our heart and pray, pray, pray.
"Watch therefore, and pray always that you may be counted worthy to escape all these things that will come to pass, and stand before the Son of Man."