Friday, March 28, 2014

Laying Down Our Lives for the Glory of God

John 9:1-7
Laying Down Our Lives for the Glory of God

     And as He passed by, He saw a man blind from birth. And His disciples asked Him, saying, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he should be born blind?” Jesus answered, “It was neither that this man sinned, nor his parents; but it was in order that the works of God might be displayed in him. We must work the works of Him who sent Me, as long as it is day; night is coming, when no man can work. While I am in the world, I am the light of the world.” When He had said this, He spat on the ground, and made clay of the spittle, and applied the clay to his eyes, and said to him, “Go, wash in the pool of Siloam.” And so he went away and washed, and came back seeing.

     My question for us today is, ARE WE WILLING TO UNDERGO HARDSHIP FOR THE SAKE OF THE GLORY OF GOD? Here we see an example of a man whom God allowed to be blind from birth so that He might demonstrate His glory to many people that they might be saved. The man might have been twenty years old or more at the time Jesus healed him but as we read further in this chapter the Pharisees would hardly believe that he was truly blind even when his parents testified to the truth of his blindness. It’s amazing how far in advance God has to plan so that He can validate His miracles to those who don’t believe.
     Further on in this chapter the man who was healed also believes in Jesus and receives eternal life. So God more than compensates for the years he lost to blindness, and also blesses him with a personal testimony that will draw many into the kingdom of God.
     So in our present circumstances, why are we complaining about life’s hardships? Jesus says that these things will glorify Him someday and draw the lost into His arms for eternity. So as we begin to follow after God and He begins to refine us through trials and hardships should we complain about these things? Jesus says that He will be glorified in our lives so that many will believe in Him through the example He will make of us. Perhaps we will be like the blind man and have our whole lives seem to go by with nothing good happening and then one day – Jesus comes and takes care of it. Why does He wait so long? Because people are so stubborn and will not believe in a God they can’t personally verify the truth of. And why not, they should have proof that our God is real! But we are to be that proof! And why would we want it any other way? We already know Him and love Him. Why should we not willingly sacrifice our earthly lives for the sake of others who may believe and share eternity with us in Heaven? God could remove us from this world the moment we become saved, but then who would be left to be His witnesses on the earth for those who do not yet know Him? 
     Jesus says that eventually there will come a day when our testifying will be done and all those who have believed will be saved and those who have not will be cast into Hell. Until that day we are to lay down our lives for the world around us that many might be saved! This is a time for work and not leisure. Let us rise up and join our Master in the work He began 2000 years ago. I believe we are in the eleventh hour and here we are standing outside waiting for work. I say – Lord, give us any tool we are able to work with and send us into Your vineyard and let us make up for the fact that we only have one hour to make up for missing the first ten! At the end of the age when the work is done, let not the ones who started at the first hour complain that we only worked one. Let us give them nothing to grumble about by being very energetic in our work!
     So let us not complain about our hardships but bless God that He will use them to bring people into Heaven! Hallelujah!

Thursday, March 20, 2014

“The Light of Life”

John 8:12
“The Light of Life”

     Again therefore Jesus spoke to them, saying, “I am the light of the world; he who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.”

     What is the darkness that Jesus is talking about when He says that we shall not walk in darkness? Jesus is addressing people in this passage who are not understanding that they are talking to God in person. In verse 19 Jesus says, “You know neither Me, nor my Father; if you knew Me, you would know my Father also.”

     Jesus, the very Son of God, is addressing people in person and they cannot understand who they are talking to. Their minds are in darkness. Their sinful nature guides all of their understanding of the conversation and they cannot get past it. 
     Jesus says that if we follow Him we will no longer walk in the darkness of sin which blinds us from seeing Jesus for who He is, the Son of God. We shall have the “Light of Life”.
     Brothers and sisters, how often do we struggle with comprehending that Jesus truly is the Son of God? You see, we are actually struggling with wanting to let go of our sinful nature. As long as we hold onto those pet sins in our lives we remain willingly spiritually blind and walk in a willful darkness. In other words, we like walking in the darkness. Jesus has come to set us free from sin so if we desire to hold onto it we are fighting against the “Light of Life”. In John 3:19-21 Jesus reveals the truth of this. “And this is the judgment, that the light is come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the light; for their deeds were evil. For everyone who does evil hates the light, and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed. But he who practices truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be manifested as having been wrought in God.
     So my word to us today is, “Jesus is the Son of God”. Let us make all diligence to spend time with Him and learn what He expects of us and begin practicing the truth, that is, putting His laws into action in our lives. Let us not walk willfully in anything we know to be sin and if we are having trouble in any area let us confess to a brother or sister that they might be praying for us. I really have found so much victory over sin by making sure that I spend an hour every day with God to seek Him and tell Him that I love Him. You see, when we spend time with Him we are spending time in the “Light of Life”. Jesus is the Light and the more time we spend with Him the less time there is for any darkness to gain control in our lives.
     So let us press into Jesus asking Him to fill us with His Light that it may radiate from our face that all may know that we belong to Jesus!

                  God bless you all!

Thursday, March 13, 2014

The Food That Will Not Perish

John 6:27-29
The Food That Will Not Perish

     “Do not work for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man shall give to you, for on Him the Father, even God, has set His seal.” They said therefore to Him, “What shall we do, that we may work the works of God?” Jesus answered and said to them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He has sent.”

     Hold up the banner of Jesus Christ! Let your light so shine before men that they may see your good works and glorify our Father in Heaven! This is our commandment from God, that we love one another! 
     As long as we seek the food of this world, its pleasures, pastimes, and pursuits, we seek the food which perishes, but when we set our eyes on Heaven and spend time seeking the things above where Christ is seated at the right hand of the Father, we seek the bread of eternal life! Jesus says that the work which we are to do is to believe in Him whom God has sent. This means that we are to truly know in our heart of hearts that Jesus is the Lord and the One sent to us from God.

     Where do you stand today? Is Jesus truly the Lord of your life? Have you submitted yourself completely to Him to obey Him in all things and to go wherever He leads you? Truly I say to us all, Jesus is the Lord of Truth, Justice, and Righteousness, how could we not want to pledge our lives to such a worthy King? So many people have to submit themselves to leaders who are only out for their own selfish ambition. It is hard to submit to such a leader, but Jesus is perfect and His kingdom will be forever! Oh let us lay down our lives for Him! Let us lay our lives before Him and say, “Command us Lord!” We are submitting to a faithful King who does not send us where He Himself is not willing to go! Indeed He has already been there and conquered it! Hallelujah!!!
     So I say to all of my brothers and sisters, “Rise up and serve the Lord with a joyful heart! Give yourselves to Him with a renewed vow today! Rise up as the body of Christ and do not bend any longer to the sins and pastimes of the world. Stand and become men and women who look like Jesus and behave like Jesus and love the world as Jesus did, laying His own life down for it! When people look at you let them see Jesus’ name written across your forehead. Let us be unable to be mistaken for anything other than a follower of Christ!” Make a commitment to spend time with Jesus every day so that you may grow in His image and enjoy His company!

     Be encouraged brothers and sisters! Rise up and be a light to this world!

                God bless you all!

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

The Well of Life

John 4:7-10
The Well of Life

     There came a woman of Samaria to draw water. Jesus said to her, “Give Me a drink.” For His disciples had gone away into the city to buy food. The Samaritan woman therefore said to Him, “How is it that You, being a Jew, ask me for a drink since I am a Samaritan woman? (For Jews had no dealings with Samaritans) Jesus answered and said to her, “If you knew the gift of God, and who it was who says to you, ‘Give Me a drink,’ you would have asked Him, and He would have given you Living Water.”

        The peace of God, 
        His joy and grace, 
        His pure life bubbling up inside us, 
        is given its rightful name – Living Water. 

How our loving Savior desires for us to drink of that water, and He is so willing to grant it to us! He shows us this desire by telling the woman that if she knew who He was she would ask for it and He would give it.
     How often Jesus must look down upon us and say to Himself, “How shall I draw them into asking Me for My Living Water?” He desires to give us things that we never even think to ask for. As in this case, Jesus draws the woman into a conversation about a cup of water only to use it as a way to draw her into asking for Living Water. This is something she would never have thought of asking for if He had not pointed it out.

     Brothers and sisters! Jesus makes the same offer to you. If you know who He is you will ask for this Living Water and He will give it to you. A well of Life bubbling up inside your heart! Refreshment for the spirit from Heaven!

        Now is the time to seek God earnestly for it! 

     And how do we do this?
Living Water comes from spending time with Jesus, time separating yourself unto God to seek Him earnestly for it. There is no substitute for a persistent quiet time with Him, Living Water cannot be had any other way.

     Everyone I know is making a commitment to do this by spending an hour with God everyday. We need our Savior to be the center of our lives again as He was when we were new Christians. Time and distractions have dulled the fire of our first love for Him. We need to rekindle it. So I urge each of you to join this commitment of spending an hour a day with God.

         Let us rise up and pray for a great revival in our land!

        God bless you all!