Wednesday, July 17, 2019
5 to judge everyone, and to convict all of them of all the ungodly acts they have committed in their ungodliness, and of all the defiant words ungodly sinners have spoken against him.” 16 These people are grumblers and faultfinders; they follow their own evil desires; they boast about themselves and flatter others for their own advantage. Jude 1:15,16
10 And do not grumble, as some of them did—and were killed by the destroying angel.11 These things happened to them as examples and were written down as warnings for us, on whom the culmination of the ages has come. 1 Co 10:10,11
Grumbling is a sin I want to avoid as God hates grumblers.
12 I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. 13 I can do all this through him who gives me strength. Php 4:12,13
The secret of being content is to trust Christ in whatever trial I am experiencing. If Christ has allowed these circumstances to come into my life, then there is a beneficial reason for them, and if I am not able to comprehend their purpose, I know that God will work them out for my good Ro 8:28. To get rid of all anxiety, I am exhorted to pray with thanksgiving Php 4:6, which means not to grumble in my prayers, state the facts and share my petitions, but, then thank God for His wonderful grace in my life.
The biggest loss that I have experienced was losing my wife Julia, as she was promoted to heaven. I miss her daily and was confused on the messages, I thought I had received from God about her sickness. I believed that God had spoken to me through His Scriptures, assuring me that He would heal Julia, but I misinterpreted His message. After going through the grieving process, I regrouped and focused on serving God whole heartily for the rest of my days. However, I was still experiencing loneliness and complaining nightly to the Lord of my unhappiness. After studying on the subject of contentment, I repented of my grumbling and embraced a grateful heart. I realized that God had been extraordinarily gracious with me. In regards to Julia’s leaving, God could have sent me to Hell for an eternal separation from Julia, but because of Jesus’ loving sacrifice, I have been granted heaven, where I’ll be with Julia soon, forever. Would I want to trade fifteen more years of this life and forfeit eternity? No, God has been super wonderful towards me. Yes, I still experience loneliness but would I want trade it in for a full-time job and give up my retirement. I retired because I could not get up at six o’clock in the morning, five days a week, and deal with all the stress that comes from teaching in a high school. So, God has been very kind to me and I am ashamed of my childish reactions to my temporal circumstances. No more grumbling for me!
Wednesday, July 17, 2019
2. SERVING THE LORD:
I was getting depressed over the lack of success that I was having in the projects which I have been doing to promote the kingdom of heaven. But the parable of the “Bags of Gold,” helped me to change my mind in this area.
15 To one he gave five bags of gold, to another two bags, and to another one bag, each according to his ability. Then he went on his journey. 16 The man who had received five bags of gold went at once and put his money to work and gained five bags more. 17 So also, the one with two bags of gold gained two more. 18 But the man who had received one bag went off, dug a hole in the ground and hid his master’s money. Mt 25:15-18
God has given me two bags and I have been disappointed, striving to gain five bags, which is unreasonable because of my smaller resources (intelligence, skills, etc.), but now I realize to do my bestCol 3:23 and that will be sufficient, regardless of the size gained. Jeremiah never had any success in his ministry but was faithful in carrying it out, and I am confident that he will be graciously rewarded for his service to the Lord.
22 “The man with two bags of gold also came. ‘Master,’ he said, ‘you entrusted me with two bags of gold; see, I have gained two more.’ 23 “His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!’ Mt 25:22,23
This man got the same commendation as the first. The man with the one bag was rebuked because he hid his bag, not serving the Lord at all.
I need to remember that teaching a Bible study group of three or four young believers requires me to do the same diligent study that someone like John McArthur does for his huge ministry. God will reward both of us for our efforts, not our results.
Friday, July 26, 2019
3. GIVING vs RECEIVING (in regards to God’s will)
(When what’s in my heart is not in God’s plan)
David wanted to build the temple but God told him Solomon would build it, and David accepted the closed door and completed what God wanted him to do (to defeat all of Israel’s enemies, resulting in peace in Solomon’s days, so Solomon could focus on building the temple, rather than fighting wars).
My joy should be on what God has done for me, not what I have done for Him.
17 The seventy-two returned with joy and said, “Lord, even the demons submit to usin your name…20 However, do not rejoice that the spirits submit to you, but rejoicethat your names are written in heaven.” Lk 10:17,20
1. How well do I love God Lk 10:27a
If I don’t get to give something to the Lord and someone else gets to give it, does my love for the Lord remain the same?
2. How well do I love others Lk 10:27b
Do I rejoice when others are rewarded as much as if I was rewarded?
Growing in grace means that I move closer to this goal. Grace is what God has done for me.
My greatest danger is that I live on activity. The ultimate test is what I would feel like, if I was not able to create. Is my joy in what I do, or what God has done for me?
UPDATE: Sunday, August,11, 2019. Today, my daughter Rachael commented on this paradigm shift and had more insight.
David’s greatest accomplishment would not have been the building of the Temple, even if God had allowed him to build it, as it was destroyed in 70 AD (Mk 13:1,2). His greatest achievement were the songs that he wrote in the book of Psalms, which will endure throughout eternity (Isa 40:8). God has used 30,147 Hebrew words in the book of Psalms, third most of the 66 books in the Bible. So praise is very important to God.
So, I need to recognize that a project I am doing now, which I may not think is praiseworthy in God’s sight, might become my greatest fulfillment Col 3:23.
Wednesday, August 7, 2019
4. THE WORD AND PRAYER
God’s Word is an indispensable weapon. In the same way, prayer is essential in this ongoing warfare. Pray hard and long. Eph 6:17,18 MSG
Rhema not logos is used in Eph 6:17and Jn 6:63.
…the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. Eph 6:17
The words I have spoken to you—they are full of the Spirit and life. Jn 6:63
The word rhema is the spoken willor prophetic wordas opposed to logos, which is God’s written revealed will.
When I am unsure of what decision to make, I must combine God’s Word with prayer. The Holy Spirit will guide me to the correct passages that God will use to communicate to me.
But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. Jn 14:26
The Holy Spirit will guide me to specific passages of scripture to bring light to my dilemma. Having stored up scripture in my heart is essential for this method to be successful.
6 These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. 7 Impress themon your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. 8 Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. 9 Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates. Dt 6:6-9
I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you. Ps 119:11
If I ask the Holy Spirit to reveal the answer to me in Scripture, He will.
14 This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. 15 And if we know that he hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of him. 1 Jn 5:14,15
To accurately discern God’s answer, I must be abiding in Christ.
7 If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. Jn 15:7
I need to pray the Word back to God in my prayers. When interceding for a lost soul, I can pray for God to give him a new heart and spirit, and exchange his heart of stone for a heart of flesh. Eze 36:26
Saturday, August 10, 2019
5. SYMBOLS ARE A LANGUAGE.
John,To the seven churches in the province of Asia: Grace and peace to you from him who is, and who was, and who is to come, and from the seven spirits before his throne. Rev 1:4
“To the angel of the church in Sardis write: These are the words of him who holds the seven spirits of God and the seven stars. I know your deeds; you have a reputation of being alive, but you are dead. Rev 3:1. From the throne came flashes of lightning, rumblings and peals of thunder. In front of the throne, seven lamps were blazing. These are the seven spirits of God. Rev 4:5
6 Then I saw a Lamb, looking as if it had been slain, standing at the center of the throne, encircled by the four living creatures and the elders. The Lamb had seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven spirits of God sent out into all the earth. Rev 5:6
The Spirit of the LORD will rest on him– the Spirit of wisdom and of understanding, the Spirit of counsel and of might, the Spirit of the knowledge and fear of the LORD–Isa 11:2
The number seven represents spiritual completeness (God rested on the seventh day because His work was done). Gen 2:2
There is not seven Spirits in number. God is speaking in symbolic language meaning the Holy Spirit is perfectly complete in His being.