Archive for the ‘Chapter 08’ Category

Proverbs 8 12-8-19

December 8, 2019

It’s easy to tell if we are one of God’s children: He tells us so. His Spirit bears witness with our spirit that we are His children.

14 Good advice is mine, and common sense; I am insight, power is mine.
15 By me kings reign, and princes make just laws. 16 By me princes govern,
nobles too, and all the earth’s rulers. 17 I love those who love me;
and those who seek me will find me.

Paul shares some amazing things in Romans 8 about our relationship with God through Christ. The Spirit of Christ comes to live in our hearts (see v.9) when we believe that Jesus says who He says He is and did what He said He’d do, and when we trust in Him by placing our faith in Him as our Savior and as our LORD. This process is covered in 10:9-10,

If you declare [publicly] with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe [trust] in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved [delivered]. 10 For it is with your heart that you believe [trust] and are justified [continue toward righteousness], and it is with your mouth that you [publicly] profess your faith and are saved [delivered].

It’s all about the relationship. The problem we have is getting beyond our own self-centeredness. If we can grasp what Paul is saying, we will be able to let go of the things we like and think we need in this world in exchange for what Christ has for us both in this world and in the next. WE HAVE THE SPIRIT OF CHRIST LIVING IN US! Here’s what He has done for us:

14 For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God.15 The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, “Abba, Father.” 16 The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children. 17 Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory.

God didn’t promise an easy life on this earth, but He did promise an extraordinary one by living for Him rather than for ourselves. As children of God, let us long for His country and His Presence. In the meantime, let us enjoy Him as we meet together and praise His name, study His Word, and fellowship in the Spirit. Let’s have CHURCH!

Abba, as we meet today in our respective churches, may we grasp the fact that we are all joined together in You through Your Spirit. May we join those who are already around the throne worshiping You. We are ALL ONE FAMILY! Wow!!! Thank You for including me in Your family, LORD. May I honor You with my life today–and forever. Amen.

Proverbs 8 11-8-19

November 8, 2019

Getting people to see reason is impossible. Without the Holy Spirit unveiling their eyes, they simply can’t see.

You who are simple, gain prudence;
    you who are foolish, set your hearts on it.
Listen, for I have trustworthy things to say;
    I open my lips to speak what is right.

When talking to someone about spiritual things, whether it’s the Gospel or Creation, we must always pray for the Spirit to open their eyes to the truth. All of creation gives testimony to God’s existence and power, but Satan has pulled the wool over their eyes in so many ways and in so many areas. Getting people hooked on sin keeps them chained to keeping the sin coming. Giving them alternative beliefs keeps them from searching for the truth.

Jesus calls us sheep. Sheep wander away just because. They are NOT diligent creatures concerning their own safety. They want what they want at the moment, which is grass from that area over there… then, over there…then, over there–until they are lost, caught in briars, fall in a hole, or become prey. WE NEED A SHEPHERD! Jesus is the Good Shepherd (John 10:14).

The veil that is over the hearts of people is their own willful pride. They are unwilling to accept that they are sheep. They would rather trust their own imaginings about right and wrong, origins, who God is and what He will and won’t do, and what is good for them. Not until they are willing to listen to reason will the Holy Spirit lift the veil.

The Apostle Paul talks about this veil in 2 Corinthians 3,

6b for the letter [the Law] kills, but the Spirit gives life.

The Old Sinai Covenant showed us that we cannot be right with God without the Spirit. Its job was to show us our sinful state.

Now if the ministry that brought death, which was engraved in letters on stone, came with glory, so that the Israelites could not look steadily at the face of Moses because of its glory, transitory though it was, will not the ministry of the Spirit be even more glorious? If the ministry that brought condemnation was glorious, how much more glorious is the ministry that brings righteousness! 10 For what was glorious has no glory now in comparison with the surpassing glory. 11 And if what was transitory came with glory, how much greater is the glory of that which lasts!

The ministry of the Spirit in the New Covenant, which came through Christ: His life, death, resurrection and ascension, is SO MUCH more glorious than the first covenant.

12 Therefore, since we have such a hope, we are very bold. 13 We are not like Moses, who would put a veil over his face to prevent the Israelites from seeing the end of what was passing away. 14 But their minds were made dull, for to this day the same veil remains when the old covenant is read. It has not been removed, because only in Christ is it taken away. 15 Even to this day when Moses is read, a veil covers their hearts.16 But whenever anyone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away.

We are to present the truth of God’s Word, the Gospel, and Creation and pray for the Spirit to convict their hearts. If they are willing, then the Spirit will lift the veil and they will come to see the truth and come to Christ. Many do; many more do not.

 17 Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. 18 And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate [can gaze upon] the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which come from the Lord, who is the Spirit.

Verse 18 is the bedrock foundation of our daily walk. Being transformed into His image is what is happening to us everyday! And the Lord receives ever-increasing glory as we do.

Let’s not be afraid to present the truth of the Gospel and Creation to others. Maybe the Spirit will use our humble efforts, our meager lunch, to work a miracle and speak to their hearts.

Abba, I pray that You will give me many opportunities to speak truth. Just one more soul, Lord, just one more soul…Amen.

Proverbs 8 10-8-19

October 8, 2019

Finding life: it’s the ultimate goal. Physically, we have it; spiritually, we need it. Jesus gives us His life in abundance!

(35) For those who find me find life and receive favor from the LORD.

We discussed the other day what happens when we die. We determined that God is eternal and wants us to live eternally with Him. We saw that sin gets in the way and must be dealt with in order to re-establish our connection and close fellowship with God. Now, let’s look at what is in store for every Christian when he dies.

For we know that if the earthly tent we live in is destroyed, we have a building from God, an eternal house in heaven, not built by human hands. Meanwhile we groan, longing to be clothed instead with our heavenly dwelling, because when we are clothed, we will not be found naked. For while we are in this tent, we groan and are burdened, because we do not wish to be unclothed but to be clothed instead with our heavenly dwelling, so that what is mortal may be swallowed up by lifeNow the one who has fashioned us for this very purpose is God, who has given us the Spirit as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come. Therefore we are always confident and know that as long as we are at home in the body we are away from the Lord. For we live by faith, not by sight. We are confident, I say, and would prefer to be away from the body and at home with the Lord. So we make it our goal to please him,whether we are at home in the body or away from it. 2 Corinthians 5:1-9

What do we find in this passage?

  1. We live in an earthly tent. It’s not permanent. Our bodies will grow old and die. Sin brought death into this life, but Jesus offers us eternal life in Him–or better, Him in us!
  2. We have a heavenly dwelling place build by Jesus Himself (see John 14:1-3) and we have heavenly bodies made in His heavenly image. “If there is a natural body, there is also a spiritual body.” “Just as we have borne the image of the earthly man [Adam], so shall we bear the image of the heavenly man [Jesus].” 1 Corinthians 15:44b, 49
  3. The physical ailments of these earthly bodies of ours reminds us of our heavenly bodies and we long for them. The older I get, the more I am ready for that new body!
  4. Mortality will be swallowed up by immortality! This is the promise of salvation.
  5. We have been fashioned through salvation to live with God forever. Currently, He lives in us through Jesus and His Spirit. Soon, we will go to be with Him, thus leaving this old covenant body and the corrupted world behind.
  6. In the meantime, His Spirit within us is our promise, His pledge, our deposit, His “trust money,” that what He says will happen WILL HAPPEN.
  7. While we are here on earth, we live by faith. Soon, we will leave this earth and live through experience, and this is what the child of God prefers!
  8. Either way, we make it our goal to please Him by being pleasing to Him. What is required to please Him? To believe in Him, His Plan, and His Promise. How do we express our belief? Through obedience. It’s how we demonstrate to Him that we really do believe Him.

In Revelation, Jesus gives letters to seven churches. These churches were real churches, but they were also representative of all churches throughout the ages. At the end of each letter, Jesus gives a promise for the faithful:

Ephesus- Jesus will give the right to eat from the tree of life, which is in the paradise of God. 2:7

Smyrna- He who is victorious (faithful) will not be hurt at all by the second death. 2:11

Pergamum- To the victorious, He will give some of the hidden manna. He will also give that person a white stone with a new name written on it known only to the one who receives it. 2:17

Thyatira- To the one who is victorious and does my will to the end, I will give authority over the nations…just as I have received authority from my Father. I will also give that one the morning star. 2:26-28

Sardis- We will be dressed in white. Our names will never be blotted out from the book of life, but will be acknowledged before the Father and his angels. 3:5

Philadelphia- We will receive a crown. We will be a “pillar in the temple of God.” We will never be made to leave it. He will write on us His name and the name of His city, the new Jerusalem, and Jesus’ new name (something NEW is coming!). 3:11-12

Laodicea- We will sit with Him on His throne (we will share it somehow). 3:21

Exciting times, folks! We have MUCH to which to look forward. Let’s believe it and receive it, name it and claim it. Let’s live for Jesus TODAY!

Dear Lord Jesus, I am reminded once again that my eyes have not seen, nor my ears heard, nor has it even entered into my mind and heart what You have in store for us! May I show You through my obedience to Your Spirit that I believe You. May Your will be done through me today, my LORD. Amen.

Proverbs 8 9-8-19

September 8, 2019

Science follows the evidence no matter where it leads, yet we tend to view it according to what we want it to say.

27 I was there when he set the heavens in place,
    when he marked out the horizon on the face of the deep,
28 when he established the clouds above
    and fixed securely the fountains of the deep,
29 when he gave the sea its boundary
    so the waters would not overstep his command,
and when he marked out the foundations of the earth.

It doesn’t get much plainer than this concerning creation. Who is “He” mentioned in these verses?

30     Then I was constantly/the craftsman at his side.
I was filled with delight day after day,
    rejoicing always in his presence,
31 rejoicing in his whole world
    and delighting in mankind.

This “He” is Jesus Christ!

but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom also he made the universe. Hebrews 1:2

If there is a question about the Bible, we must realize that our knowledge is incomplete. God waited until mankind invented the microscope to reveal His creation processes to us. One merely has to look at the human cell to find that there is NO WAY that it could have self-created! It is FAR too complex and each part depends upon the other.

It comes down to what we want to see. In Creation, I see the hand of a loving God, One who takes part in His creation and wants me to interact with Him. I am awed by all that He has made and I rejoice in it.

This morning, I invite you to join me, at your respective churches, to exalt the Lord God and to praise His name. He invites us to come to His throne together and eat with Him! WOW!

See you there!

Abba, thank You for the invitation. I will gladly take you up on it! Amen.