Archive for the ‘Chapter 12’ Category

Proverbs 12 1-12-20

January 12, 2020

Putting ourselves in a place to hear truth is what church is all about! The question is: Do we really want TRUTH?

20 Deceit is in the hearts of those who plot evil, but those who promote peace [and truth] have joy.

The first part of this verse can be taken two ways:

  1. Those who plot evil intentionally deceive;
  2. Those who plot evil are deceived into doing so.

The second are people who unwittingly do the will of the first. We cannot ever forget that we have an enemy, the devil, whose primary language is lying. Here’s how Jesus describes him:

44 You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies. John 8:44

Jesus also said in that same chapter, “you shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free.” John 8:32 What truth? The truth about the Gospel, which is the Good News of Jesus Christ. What IS the Gospel?

  1. God created mankind to love Him.
  2. Mankind sinned.
  3. Jesus came to pay for our sin by dying in our place and then rising again.
  4. He offers new life to all who will die through Him and allow Him to rise in their hearts.
  5. In His time, He will right this world and we will live with Him forever as it was originally intended.

The first two chapters of Genesis and the last two chapters of Revelation are bookends of the Christian story. Either both are literally true or neither are literally true because Christ is the Hero of both the beginning and the end. In fact, He calls Himself the Beginning and the End:

13 I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End. Revelation 22:13

Satan has deceived the world through Evolution and thus undermined the Gospel.

Today at our church, Creation Truth Ministries will be presenting truth about the literal account of the first 11 chapters of Genesis using archeology and other sciences. If you are in the area, that presentation is tonight at 5:00. I would LOVE to have you come. If you are not in the area, please pray that truth would prevail over the deception that Satan has placed in the minds of many through Evolution teaching. May people turn to Christ and His Word through this presentation.

Jesus believed in a real Adam and Eve, the Great Flood, and Jonah’s account. We should, too. I am reminded of what Jesus said at the end of the Sermon on the Mount:

24 “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. 25 The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock.26 But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. 27 The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.”

CREATION IS THE FOUNDATION OF THE GOSPEL

Abba, may You pique people’s interest as they see the dinosaur bones onstage today. May they come tonight with open minds and ready to hear truth. May they listen to Your Spirit as You confirm truth to them. May they adjust their thinking from what they have known or been taught that is wrong to that which is right. Increase our faith, O LORD, through the knowledge of the truth, and as You do, increase our joy and peace, as well. Looking forward to great things today. Amen.

Proverbs 12 12-12-19

December 12, 2019

Do you know what Christ is doing for you right now, this very moment? He is praying for you! The Spirit, too!

14 From the fruit of their lips people are filled with good things,
    and the work of their hands brings them reward.

There is something about a job well done that satisfies a person. It’s one of the built-in benefits of being human. God created us to enjoy our work. The body releases dopamine even when we think about things we have accomplished and we feel a lift to our spirits.

There is a spiritual correlation to this truth. When we turn our hearts to the LORD and regard Him in His Word, we feel the love and joy of the LORD as He speaks to our hearts. Not only does He address us when we acknowledge Him, the LORD Jesus, in light of His sacrifice, is our Intercession before the Father (Jesus’s sacrifice on the cross intercedes eternally for those who claim it). When we pray, the Holy Spirit takes our prayers and supercharges them! He interprets them and communicates them to the Father in ways we can never understand here on earth. Let’s read it:

26 In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans. 27 And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for God’s people in accordance with the will of God.

What can we glean from this passage?

  1. We are weak. Without the help of the Holy Spirit, our prayers are powerless. We must be in touch with Him in order to accomplish anything spiritually.
  2. There is One who searches our hearts and knows our deepest thoughts: The One who lives in our hearts! Jesus knows us inside and out. We should never try to hide anything from Him. Let’s acknowledge our sinful tendencies and ask for help.
  3. The Spirit always prays according to God’s will for us. In other words, it’s all about God’s Plan. We would do well to orient our lives according to His Plan. What IS His Plan? To bring all things under the authority of Christ.

7 I will proclaim the Lord’s decree: He said to me, “You are my son; today I have become [revealed to the world that I am] your father. 8 Ask me, and I will make the nations your inheritance, the ends of the earth your possession. Psalm 2:7-8

That power is the same as the mighty strength 20 he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms, 21 far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every name that is invoked, not only in the present age but also in the one to come. 22 And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church,23 which is his body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way. Ephesians 1:19b-23

Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, 10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth,11 and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. Philippians 2:9-11

11 Since everything will be destroyed in this way, what kind of people ought you to be? You ought to live holy and godly lives 12 as you look forward to the day of God and speed its coming. That day will bring about the destruction of the heavens by fire, and the elements [earth] will melt in the heat. 13 But in keeping with his promise we are looking forward to a new heaven and a new earth, where righteousness dwells. 14 So then, dear friends, since you are looking forward to this, make every effort to be found spotless, blameless and at peace with him. 2 Peter 3:11-14

If this is the case, then we should hold loosely to the things of this world and be ready to do His will at a moment’s notice. The only way to be ready is to be in constant contact with Him. It’s called conversational prayer. It’s like video-calling someone and putting him on speakerphone–and leaving the line open! THIS is how we should live our lives. It’s not so much Him checking up on us to see if we are living godly lives; it’s Him leading us around the landmines of sin in a sin-filled world.

Let’s be about the Father’s business today as we stay in touch with Him throughout the day.

Abba, I pray that You would reveal Yourself to us as we go through our day. May we sense Your presence and participation in our lives; may we recognize Your direction as You point out different things to us; may we receive Your revelation about a situation or a person and how to best minister in that situation or to that person; may we give You glory as we exult in our interaction with You! May You be honored, magnified and glorified. Amen.

Proverbs 12 11-12-19

November 12, 2019

What we do in an emergency has already been established by the routine of our lives. It’s what training is all about.

To learn, you must love discipline; it is stupid to hate correction.

Wickedness never brings stability, but the godly have deep roots.

Bringing DESIRE under control is what Christ wants to do in our hearts. His Spirit works with us daily, even constantly, to master our desires. Actually, we don’t really ever master them; we learn to take them to the altar and leave them there, replacing them with the nature and character of Christ.

We get a good snapshot of Christ’s character in 1 Corinthians 13. Just remember that God is love (1 John 4:16) and that Christ the Son is God (John 1:18, 10:30, 14:9), therefore Jesus is love.

Love [Jesus] is patient and kind. Love [Jesus] is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It [He] does not demand its [His] own way. It [He] is not irritable, and it [He] keeps no record of being wronged [–ever, now or in eternity, so lose the idea of us having to give an account for our lives in heaven]. It [He] does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love [Jesus] never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.

Jesus wants us to become JUST LIKE HIM. In fact, His Spirit is at work right now creating in us the character of Christ–if we let Him. He wants us to be patient and kind (numbers four and five in the list of the fruit of the Spirit), He does not want us to be jealous of what we have, but to share generously with others–within the scope of goodness. He does not want us to be proud and rude, but gentle and meek (controlled strength). He is not irritable, therefore we should strive to not be irritable (that’s a hard one!). Jesus does not keep a record of wrongs, therefore, we should learn to forgive and forget (render the memory powerless). He rejoices when truth is discovered and honored. He never gives up on us, never loses faith in us, is always hopeful for us, and endures through every circumstance with us. He LOVES us!

Let’s ask the LORD to make us more like Him today. Of course, we will need opportunities to exercise this righteousness He gives us, so look for ways to show that Christ is in you today. In fact, ask Him to live through you and with you all day today. You and He will have a great time together!

Abba, I know the process of becoming like You (sanctification) is long and slow, and I can hardly tell that You’ve done anything because I still fight the same old temptations, but I am encouraged when others tell me that they can see how You’ve changed me through the years–and tears. May I never quit–or even relax–striving to be like You, LORD. May You have Your way with me everyday, TODAY. Amen.

Proverbs 12 9-12-19

September 12, 2019

Everything we say and everything we do has a reward or a consequence. We don’t set the standard; God does.

(14) From the fruit of their lips people are filled with good things, and the work of their hands brings them reward.

We take our cue from Jesus, who  was powerful in word and deed before God and all the people.” Luke 24:19

We learn from the Apostle Paul that we are to value highly what we say and do:

(17) And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. Colossians 3:17

What is interesting is that in order to have control over our words, we must have control over our minds and thoughts, which also gives us power over our actions.

Verses on taking control of our thoughts:

For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does.The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments [in our minds] and every pretension [lie and deception] that sets itself up against the knowledge of God [that which is counter to His holiness], and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. 2 Corinthians 10:3-5  We are in a battle everyday!

Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy [His grace poured out on us], to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice [climb up on the altar], holy and pleasing to God [this is how we are in God’s sight because of the blood of Jesus]—this is your true and proper worship [we worship out of gratitude in our hearts!].Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind [through prayer and Bible study]. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will [for each word and deed]. Romans 12:1-2

How seriously we take these verses and the task of yielding our words and deeds to the LORD speaks loudly about where we think we stand in God’s eyes. Jesus said this to Simon the Pharisee:

41 “Two people owed money to a certain moneylender. One owed him five hundred denarii, and the other fifty. 42 Neither of them had the money to pay him back, so he forgave the debts of both. Now which of them will love him more?”

43 Simon replied, “I suppose the one who had the bigger debt forgiven.”

“You have judged correctly,” Jesus said.

44 Then he turned toward the woman and said to Simon, “Do you see this woman? I came into your house. You did not give me any water for my feet, but she wet my feet with her tears and wiped them with her hair. 45 You did not give me a kiss, but this woman, from the time I entered, has not stopped kissing my feet. 46 You did not put oil on my head, but she has poured perfume on my feet. 47 Therefore, I tell you, her many sins have been forgiven—as her great love has shown. But whoever has been forgiven little loves little.” Luke 7:41-47

How much do we think we have been forgiven? Let’s let this question determine how hard we try in the area of mastering our words and deeds. Just remember that our dependence upon the Holy Spirit is the sure way to victory. To do it in our own power is actually counter-productive for a Christian. It is trying to use pre-salvation methods to gain post-salvation fruit. Let’s call on Him who has given us love and grace, encouragement and hope, to strengthen us in every good deed and word.

16 May our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father, who loved us and by his grace gave us eternal encouragement and good hope,17 encourage your hearts and strengthen you in every good deed and word. 2 Thessalonians 2:16-17