Jesus, had to submit, to resist temptation
James 1:12 Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love Him.
I have been struggling with an area of temptation, that has been taunting me. This morning when I fell face first before God, praying for an answer to this struggle, this is the verse He delivered to me. As I read it, mediated on it and read my NIV commentary on this verse, it became clear to me what I have been doing wrong. When we are faced with temptation we must first see it for what it is, the devil placing wrong thoughts into our mind. Second we need to submit to God, through prayer while mediating on His Word, (Matthew 4:1-11 is a good place to find encouragement.) Third we must resist the devil, (James 4:7,) and he will flee along with those thoughts! God will not tempt us, because He is not a God of temptation, but a God of love. He will test our faith, by allowing the devil to tempt us, in order to help us grow in our faith and our dependence on Him, (1 Corinthians 10:13, God will alway have a way to escape temptation, but we have to first submit to Him and trust that He will lead us out.) What I have been doing wrong, is placing my trust and faith in puffing up to the temptation through my flesh, thinking I am strong enough. God revealed to me this morning in Matthew 4, that even Jesus in the flesh had to submit to God and resist the devil in order to endureth that temptation.
Lord, thank You, for this message of hope and life, You have spoken through Your Word into my heart this morning. Father, I pray if there be another saint struggling with temptation right now, that this message will penetrate their heart like mine, and help them to win victory over sin, in Jesus name I claim victory over this temptation, Amen.
My help cometh from the LORD, which made heaven and earth.
God IS my Help I will keep my eyes locked on Him, as each wave comes crashing down on me. As the sun pours it’s hot beams against my face, causing me to squint my eyes. I will still remain focused on the hills where my help comes from, the Lord.
The Bible is filled with men and women who faced great adversaries. God reveals through them, that faith in Him is what brings victory.
“1 Samuel 17:40-51” David faced his giant on the battlefield surrounded by scared Saul and his army. When David walked out with only a sling and stone in his hand, his enemy, Goliath laughed at him. Little did that giant know that it wasn’t the stone that was gonna bring him down, but the faith that was behind the pull of that sling. David knew the stone was only the object that would carry the mighty blow that God would bring down his opponent with.
“Isaiah 37:20-21,36” When Sennacherib king of Assyria, came against Judah. King Hezekiah prayed that God would protect them, God sent an angel of the Lord that night to put 185,000 Assyrians to death. Upon the death of his army Sennacherib fled to Nineveh. King Hezekiah knew that his nation would be defeated if they went to battle against the Assyrians without God. This King knew defeating their enemy started with faith.
There is nothing new under the sun, even King Solomon the wisest King knew and wrote this in the Word of God, “Ecclesiastes 1:9.” Those who believe and follow God have always had their enemies. Throughout the Bible you will find where the enemies of the Jews wanted them destroyed, “Esther 3:8-10.” We saved children of God today, still face this same threat of being despised for our belief in Christ, and our enemies still want us destroyed. Like all these men and women in the Bible we have to place our faith in God and know He alone can protect us from the hands of our enemy, “Psalm 121:7.” Our apparel and position against our enemies will always be in the armor of God while on our knees praying for our enemies to be defeated, “Ephesians 6:11-18.” God was on the throne when David threw the stone, when Esther approached King Ahasuerus and when King Hezekiah prayed for protection. Still today our Great I AM is still on the throne and He is very much aware of our enemies. Like the many men and women of the Bible, God’s protection and deliverance started with faith.
We American believers need to stop searching this world for the answer to the fears we have for our enemies that wants us destroyed. We need to be in the right position on our knees, with our armor on looking to God in faith, knowing He is the only one who can deliver us from our fiery furnace.
God laid this on my heart this morning.
“If you can’t love others at their worst, you can not love them at their best.”
As I meditated on this, the Holy Spirit started pouring scripture into my heart.
Romans 5:8 But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. (God loved us at our worse as lost sinners, with the same love He has for us as His saved saints.)
1 John 4:19 We love him, because he first loved us. (Before we came to love God at our salvation, He first loved us as lost sinners.)
John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. (God’s love is not not just for His past, present or future saints, God’s love is for ALL the lost world, even at our worse.)
Matthew 5:44 But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you. (Jesus is our greatest example here in the verse, matter of fact this verse was spoken by Him. Jesus loves all the world, even those who stood against Him, spoke hate over Him, mocked Him, used Him to gain 30 silver pieces and persecuted Him on the cross. Jesus did not just die for His disciples “friends” His mother, the crowds that followed after Him. Jesus died as well for those who hated Him and wanted nothing more but to silence Him through crucifixion. Little did they know, Jesus died so that whosoever could be saved. Even when the crowed was yelling crucify Him with hate in their hearts, Jesus took His last prayerful breath with love toward ALL the world. Jesus loved us at our worse, as much as the day we started loving Him with our best.)
If we can’t love others at their worse, like Jesus did for us before our salvation. then we most certainly can not love them at their best when their heart is on fire for God.
I needed this message because I have people in my life who are not following Christ and I often get irritated with them, because I see their worse, over their best. My heart sometimes gets hard toward them and I start focusing on the bad and not the good that God can see. I easily forget that God loved me at my worse in a pit of hate, anger, bitterness while living a lifestyle of addiction. If God can see the best in me at my worse as a lost sinner. Then my focus needs to be seeing the best in others and loving them at their worse.
Lord I praise You, for this message You laid on my heart this morning. Father it was one that I needed to hear and needed to penetrate deep into my heart, causing me to evaluate how I see, treat and love others. Lord I pray to see the best in others and to love others at their worse, in the precious name of Jesus, Amen.
Build For God’s Glory
Jeremiah 49:16 Thy terribleness hath deceived thee, and the pride of thine heart, O thou that dwellest in the clefts of the rock, that holdest the height of the hill: though thou shouldest make thy nest as high as the eagle, I will bring thee down from thence, saith the LORD.
Edom was a nation that was located in the rocks on a high mountaintop fortress that today is known as Petra, in Southern Jordan. Edom thought it was invincible because of it’s location, and was destroyed by God because of her pride.
Pride destroys individuals as well as nations. It makes us think we can take care of ourselves without God’s help. Even serving God and others can lead us into pride, if we are not servicing the kingdom for His glory. No matter how tall our fortresses is that we have built in vain, (Psalm 127:1.) If God is not the builder we will be brought down! Our pride should be only in the fortress only God can build through us.
Lord, this insight of your Word, had caused me to take inventory of my life and service for, You. Lord I pray that You will point out and remove pride I may be harboring, in Jesus name I pray, Amen.
November 5, 2015
God’s Word can NOT be destroyed!
Jeremiah 36:27-28 After the king burned the scroll containing the words that Baruch had written at Jeremiah’s dictation, the word of the Lord came to Jeremiah: Take another scroll and write on it all the words that were on the first scroll, which Jehoiakim king of Judah burned up. (NIV)
King Jehoiakim did not like the Word of the Lord that was read to him, from the prophet Jeremiah. As Jehudi read four columns of the scroll out loud to the king and all his officials, the king would cut the columns off with a scribe’s knife and throw the Word of Lord into the fire pit, (Jeremiah 36:23.) God then commanded Jeremiah to dictate every word again to be written on a scroll and delivered again to king Jehoakim. This time He had a special message for the king. “You ask while burning my Word, why did I have written, the king of Babylon would come and destroy this land, and cut off both man and animals from it, (Jeremiah 36:29.) God’s answer to king Jehoakim was, “you will have no one to sit on the throne of David, your body will be thrown out to be exposed to the heat of the day and frost by night. I will punish you, king Jehoakim along with your children and attendants for each of your own wickedness, I will bring everyone living in Jerusalem and Judah the disaster I pronounced, because you have not listen to me, (Jeremiah 36:30-31.)
Today in America we have taken the Word of the Lord out of our homes, schools, churches, from the White House, congress out of the government and from the most important place it needs to be, in our hearts. I believe this message from God to Jehoakim, is just as true for us today as it was then for him. We can take down the Ten Commandments, burn Bibles, rebuke the Word from our nation, but it does not change that God’s Word is the truth and that He will bring to pass what He has promised. Whether this world wants to believe it or not, Jesus is coming, and He will take the saints home. Those who remain will have to face the disaster of their own wicked sins, because they never listen to the warnings and never accepted Jesus as their Savior.
We as Christians in this nation and all around the world need to keep writing down the Word, speaking the Word, sharing the Word and proclaiming the Word over our family, friends, nation and to this world just like Jeremiah. People may keep turning a blind eye, refusing to hear the truth and even try to destroy it, but like king Jehoakim, God will deliver what He has promised. Which side of that promise do you want to be on; the rapture or the tribulation? Now is the time for salvation! Don’t put off today what might not be available tomorrow. Seek the Lord while He may be found, (Isaiah 55:6.)
Heavenly Father as our hearts wax cold and our nation turns it eyes from you, I pray we raiment of Christ will unite together and stand strong on the promises of Your Word. Lord Your Word is the truth and we must keep it hidden in our hearts, and on the the tips of our tongues ready to speak at all times and written upon our homes to be read daily. Lord I pray to stand strong and united against the tactics of the devil, because he knows his time is short. Lord I pray to keep my eyes on Your coming and be busy at work for the gospel when You return to Mount Olives to take me home, in Jesus name above all names I pray, Amen.
Thursday, October 8, 2015
Speak Love Where Pain Is The Source
Proverbs 15:1 A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger.
When someone speaks hateful words toward us, we almost always want to strike back at them with distasteful words to wound them as they have done us. The problem is that person is already wounded with a hurt we can not see. When someone treats us with unkind words and actions…STOP, and consider the source. There is no telling what pain is in their heart that is causing their anger. Instead of giving them a piece of your mind, give them a piece of your heart and pray for their wounds! Our kind words to an anger heart, sometimes is exactly what those in pain need!
Heavenly Father I know far to often I speak with my mind instead of my heart. Lord help me to remember that everyone is fighting battles I can not see. I pray to have a soft answer to a hard heart that is in pain and in need to see Christ in me, in Jesus name I pray, Amen.
October 7, 2015
The Devil is a liar!
John 8:44 Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.
Many times we believers get caught in the Devil’s trap, because we are caught up into thinking we are dart proof, by walking in the will of God. This is far from the truth, the more you spend with God and servicing His kingdom, the more the Devil will attack you. He will attack in varies ways that you will least expect. He will attack you in the valley and on a mountain with your health; your marriage and children; your relationships with family and friends; your home, car, finances and ministries. The Devil will take a small dust particle of confusion in your eye and blow it out of proportion to cause you to worry and over analyze a situation to the point where your eye is covered in a pile of sand called fear. When confusion arises you can just about bet Satan is lurking near by and ready to throw his traps out. We need to be sober minded; not feeding into our fears, quickly get into the Word along with prayer, because the Devil our adversary is like a roaring lion looking for someone he can devour, (1 Peter 5:8.) If your thoughts don’t not line up with the Word of God, those thoughts are not from God, (1Thessalonians 5:21.) Immediately take them captive by submitting to God and He will release them from your mind, (James 4:7.) Remember the only thing the devil feeds you is trash, God feeds you the truth!
Heavenly Father I thank You for Your amazing grace of salvation and abundant mercy. Lord I know that I have an enemy and He wants nothing more but to cause me heartache and pain. Lord I pray to be on constant watch of my heart and mind against the schemes of the Devil. Lord guide me to be sober minded and not to feed my fears, in Jesus name I pray, Amen.
Philippians 1:27 Only let your conversation be as it becometh the gospel of Christ: that whether I come and see you, or else be absent, I may hear of your affairs, that ye stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel.
Like a loving parent instructing their children on how they are to act, Paul is reminding the church of Philippi to let everything that comes from their mouth bring glory to God. We Christians are to have integrity and to live consistent with what we believe, teach and preach. The Gospel should not only be taught by preaching with just words, but as well by the way we live. The way we speak and treat others should be the same in church as outside of church. Our Pastor and congregation should hear that we are being guided by the Holy Spirit and leading others to Christ with love. The true test is not how you treat others during a sermon, but how you treat others after a sermon. We need to show our faith and love not just during church, but out in the world and especially at home.
Heavenly Father I pray to have a burden and compassionate heart to love on others and show my faith to lead them to Christ. Lord I pray the same smile I show at church is the same smile I give to a stranger in need of the Gospel. Lord help me to be Your hands and feet each day with the way I speak, treat and act around others, in Jesus name I pray, Amen.
Monday, October 5, 2015
Everyone Has A Story
Psalm 118:17 I shall not die, but live, and declare the works of the LORD.
We all have a story to tell, about how Jesus pulled us from the pit headed straight to hell, (Psalm 40:2.) No longer our we dead and living in our sin, but we are now alive living for Christ, (Romans 6:7-11.) Our testimony maybe what others need to hear about salvation through Jesus, that is available for all the world, (John 3:16.) The world does not know there is hope, unless we declare what God has done for us. The same grace God used to raise Jesus, is the same grace that brought our dry bones and dead hearts to life. Our redemption story needs to be told, so that others can see that we live by faith and not by our flesh through Jesus Christ, (Galatians 2:20.) Letting your light shine, means letting others hear about what great deliverance God has made and is making in you.
Most Gracious Heavenly Father I pray to be bold by telling others what You have done for my life. Lord You pulled me out of my pit of destruction and place me on my solid rock, Jesus. If You can exchange my ashes for beauty, You can change any heart to follow Christ. Lord I pray to always be ready to tell what You have ydone in my life to bring these dry bones to life, in Jesus name I pray, Amen.