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 “You therefore, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus. (2) And the things that you have heard from me among many witnesses, commit these to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.”  2 Tim 2:1-3 There is a need to maintain the consistency of effort in fulfilling a shared vision. The instructions of Paul were received because he both trained and taught his disciples in the ways of Jesus Christ. If his life contradicted his message, it would have been hypocritical for him to expect more from others than he was willing to do. Not only did they observe his manner of life, his reputation was widespread among many witnesses. It is good to be able to say that your life is a life committed to Christ, but it is far more significant for others to bear witness of your commitment. Therefore he was able to exhort his disciples to commit to others what they collectively were committed to. This is a day where true commitment is needed desperately. The world needs to see examples of committed saints of God modeling before them faithfulness to the Lord and His Word. At that…

“We know that we are of God, and the whole world lies under the sway of the wicked one.” 1 John 5:16 The contrast between light and darkness is becoming more apparent and on different fronts. There are those who stand outside of what now is now considered to be the norm because they continue to uphold a standard that appears archaic. The tried and proven truths are constantly being challenged and tested. Yet they are able to withstand all the shifting currents of modernity. If we did not know that we were of God, even those who may be in places where worship is accepted would be in doubt. Those who know that they are of God have His Spirit as their guarantee and confirmation. He makes it known to them to whom they belong. We are of God, and the whole world lies under the sway of the wicked one. He shakes all things that can be shaken in order for only the truth and children of wisdom to remain.  Doctrines that appeal to the vanity of the mind have become widespread and flourishing. When all who could be deceived would have gone their own way, the Son…

“Whenever the cloud was taken up from above the tabernacle, the children of Israel would go onward in all their journeys.” Exodus 40:36  The glory cloud would settle the potential disputes among the children of Israel as to whether or not it was time to proceed on their journey. Otherwise there would have been unsettled arguments in interpreting the right season to advance, and even who had the authority to give the orders to move on. Moses alone was able to approach Mt. Sinai where the smoke ascended from the fire with the lightning, thunder, and earthquakes because the Lord had descended upon it. He had ascended into the very cloud that covered them and guided them along the way. Now the instructions given to them by Moses were received as instructions from Almighty God. The power of God has not diminished over time. Rather it was wrapped in human flesh. The unapproachable became approachable in Christ Jesus. Now it is His Word that must guide and govern our lives. When His Word is spoken, the glory cloud is lifted that we may go onward in all our journeys. Without His grace, we are exposed to the enemy of our…

“How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God! How great is the sum of them!” Psalm 139:17 The mind of the ungodly is perplexed by what exists beyond lie his reach. He has rested upon his opinions of life and love, as the result never knowing either. His restlessness drives him in dual directions thus condemning him to a divided life. The evidence of God cannot be completely ignored, but an admission of God’s existence would contradict the natural passions that demand attention. But to the believer, he knows that God’s mind is constantly focused upon him. Therefore he is aware that his life is lived under the scrutiny of the only One who will give special attention to details. He knows our frame and frailties, but intensely works upon and within us to produce what He wills. He never gives up but fixed His attention upon His beloved.  We learn to trust Him for the outcome of yielding everything to Him. The knowledge of God stabilizes us and prevents us from the inner wars of the ungodly but rather produce the peace that passes all understanding.

“Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.” 1 John 4:11 God’s love obligates us without force. We are rather persuaded by His love if it is authentic. As we grow in knowledge of the dimensions of the love released from the Father through the Son to us, our confidence in Him increases. To know His love is to know that He has our best interest at heart. We are secure in Him with a positive expectation of the future. The present challenges are but temporary and momentary while God is working behind the scene for our good. The challenge to love others is usually stifled by our own insecurities. When there is a question regarding our own acceptance, we would have the tendency to hoard whatever we may have the opportunity to either possess or even manage. The knowledge of His love liberates us to love others. If we know that God so loved us, our response that His love is working in us ought to be translated into loving one another. If we cannot love one another, the question is not in relation to them but in relation to Him. To know His…

“Jesus answered, ‘Neither this man nor his parents sinned, but that the works of God should be revealed in him.” John 9:3  It was customary for sicknesses and diseases to be directly associated with an act of sin. A blind man who was born that way was in question as to whether it was his sin or his parent’s sin. The disciples looked backwards into the man’s past, while Jesus was looking forward. Many things may have contributed to situations being as they are. Sin is the root cause of all sicknesses and diseases, but the sin debt has been paid once for all. It is not just the act of sin but sin itself. In a fallen world, conditions exist among many without a direct cause. But the Son of God was manifested that He might destroy the works of the devil. As we look unto Jesus and allow His Spirit to work in us without fleshly interference, the works of God will be revealed in us that Christ may be glorified in our flesh. Look forward on behalf of the lost and the informed. Jesus is the Author and the Finisher of our faith.

“The Son of Man came eating and drinking, and they say, ‘Look, a glutton and a winebibber, a friend of tax collectors and sinners!’ But wisdom is justified by her children.” Matt 11:19 Sinners flocked around Jesus and loved to be his companions, while the religions found Him to be repulsive and were made to feel uncomfortable. Prostitutes and publicans followed Him around without feeling intimidated, but sought Him out knowing that they would not be condemned. Even though He did not give license to sin, but rather came that all of the works of the devil would be destroyed by Him. He would judge the judges of men who would place heavy burdens upon their shoulders. But He would come into the Temple and turn over the tables of the money changers. His life was paradoxical to most because it appeared as if He would tolerate the very thing in others the very thing that by His nature He despised. Sinners, Publicans, and the poor gladly received the Gospel because they knew that their lives did not measure up to His standard. Therefore, they received Him gladly as one who would be thought of as rejecting Him, while those…

“Then He said to the disciple, “Behold your mother!” John 19:27 Jesus made an oral testament to John, the beloved disciple, to provide as He would for her after His death. It was a binding agreement in the company of others if accepted, to care for her needs as the second oldest son. Even though there were other children, his responsibility was to treat her as He would treat her in absentia. John knowing Jesus was to compensate for the void that would otherwise be in her life. This example is a challenge to every son and daughter to consider the needs of parents. To honor our father and mother is to provide for them what is needed. Jesus told John to look intensively at the woman that will become his mother. And He told His mother Mary to look intensively at the man who would become her son. A new relationship was to be forged at that very moment. As we look at our mothers, if we could for a moment see what Jesus saw in His own mother. She was the vessel chosen by God for Him to enter into the earth. We owe a great degree of…

“He grants the barren woman a home, like a joyful mother of children.” Ps 113:9 The exercise of affection in guiding the household and caring for children produces a joy in the heart of mothers. She was made to love her children and to maintain the household in which she has the pleasure to occupy. But what if there was no household to care for, nor child to guide? It would leave the woman who has the affection deep within without an outlet to express the innate love given to women. Yet God provides for her a home. Instead of being homeless, her place is in Christ with God. He draws her close to Himself so that nothing is lacking in her life. She will find in Him a satisfaction as joyful as that of a mother of children. It is only when she allow her mind to be influenced by thoughts of being incomplete will she be drawn away from the richness of God’s love. To some the circumstance is temporal until she is granted the privilege of mothering, while with others, her devotion is to be given over to God absolutely with a special grace to be drawn…

“If the ax is dull, and one does not sharpen the edge, Then he must use more strength; But wisdom brings success.” Eccl 10:10 The energy and strength exerted by the man who tries to figure things out on his own is constantly exerted. Yet the results are minimal because it is only mind challenging matter. The mind cannot achieve all that is believed when the axe is dull. But when God sharpens the edge, His Spirit begins to work and the prayer on earth is answered from heaven. God sharpens our axe in order to allow us to work with wisdom guiding us along the way. The Eternal God uses His faculties seeing the end before the beginning. He knows what it takes beforehand for the children of God to accomplish His will. We have a sharper cutting edge when we pray continually and do not lean to our own understanding. Then when His Word is spoken, it is sensible because the heart has been prepared to make room for the truth. Each moment must count with eternity in view. The wise seeks after wisdom and more is given to him. But the fool thinks that he has already…