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“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…

“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…

“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…

“After these things Jesus showed Himself again to the disciples at the Sea of Tiberias, and in this way He showed Himself:” John 21:1-2 He makes Himself known in ways that are familiar to each person. He once came in human flesh and fully identified with the human experience, yet honoring the Father by not yielding to the temptation of sin. After He was raised from the dead, He continued to show Himself again to His disciples. In His resurrected state, He is still in touch with all things pertaining to us. They were fishermen before their encounter with Jesus. Now that He had been crucified, they returned to their former professions. Their lack of success was challenged by His question, “Children, have you any food?” They had toiled all night to no avail. Jesus then gave them instructions that they could either follow or ignore. But when they cast their nets on the other side of the boat, they could not contain all that was in their nets. The resurrected Christ makes His presence known again among His disciples. He is the same Jesus but now raised in newness of life as the first-born of many brethren. It is…

“But may the God of all grace, who called us to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you.” 1 Peter 5:10 The progression that takes place in the life of a Christ-follower begins with the call. He calls us to Himself. Then we can be conformed to the image of His Son. It is only when we answer the initial call will we qualify to experience what is produced in us as the result of being drawn close to Him. His eternal glory is the finished product of His grace. God looks at the end from the beginning. But the path requires suffering even though it is only for a little while in contrast to the glory that shall be revealed in us. We are matured to see things from His perspective, thus established in the faith not wavering because of various trials. Each challenge provides strength for future challenges as we develop a greater resistance to the evil one. Finally we are settled as not to be moved by whatever may come our way. A steadfast faith remains constant and undisturbed in a fixed position in relation to…

“Why do you seek the living among the dead?” Luke 24:5 The pronouncement of the two angels at the empty tomb is the challenge to this generation. We need answers. This is a desperate time for so many in searching for real answers. People are getting tired of pacifying words that merely delay the imminent failures that they have grown so accustomed to. Some are wishfully thinking that some semblance of life may yet remain among the tombs of yesterday’s shattered dreams. They have dug their stakes and set up their tents in graveyards rather than in the place where new life is blossoming. Jesus was once there but only for a little while. He was carried there because no life was within His body. Now it is as empty as those who attempt to live their lives without Him. But now as being resurrected, He has moved beyond where men were able to place Him. He is where He has decided to be. Now is the time to meet Him where He chooses to reside. He is among the living. Those who have spirit-life within them and a will to do His Father’s will, their life takes on its…

“No weapon formed against you shall prosper, and every tongue which rises against you in judgment you shall condemn.” Isaiah 54:17 The objective of Satan is the formation of weapons that may be used to attack areas of apparent weaknesses against the saints of God. The alluring factions that seem to appear out of nowhere were skillfully planned with precision to wear down even the strongest among us. If we ever become careless in our defense or unaware that we are in the battle of the lifetime, his fiery darts will attach itself to us and slowly dispense the poisonous venom that slowly produces death. Much of what is used are words that plant within our hearts the seed of discontent and doubt. What God has done, and is currently doing in the life of the believer, is establishing him in righteousness. Whatever is not of faith is sin. Our eyes must constantly be fixed upon the object of our faith, Jesus Christ that we might be established in His righteousness. Every trial, every challenge that comes can either be used as a means of establishing us in the faith, or providing evidence against the One in whom we have…

“And so, after he had patiently endured, he obtained the promise.” Hebrews 6:15 The rush towards the promise, without patience to endure the interval trials, is giving expression to doubt and unbelief. Those careless movements are usually met with disappointments with self as well as with God. Misunderstandings arise concerning God’s character of love and concern when one caves in while engaged in the battle. This happens when Christ is not being seen and known throughout all of the circumstances of life. Faith requires one to believe in God and what He has promised even before the evidence is present. His desire is to reveal Himself through His Word that is able to withstand every crisis met along the way. His Word is truth and can outlive the lies of Satan. The bump in the road was not a roadblock but a stepping –stone leading towards the life that lies ahead. There are times when there is nothing left but His promises and pressures. The pressures may try to shroud the promise but the promises are true regardless of the amount of pressure. Perhaps this could be the path of authentic faith being developed within one’s life. Many need to…

“Since Jesus went through everything you’re going through and more, learn to think like him.” 1 Peter 4:1 (MSG) The aim of Jesus is to teach us what it means to be fully human. There has been made for us a way to understand life from a perspective that is much greater than fallen man is able to see, understand, or express. Jesus Christ’s example demonstrates God’s intentions from the beginning for the whole of humanity. The image of God in man was ravaged and marred by sin leaving him disfigured with only a faint semblance of the original model. But where the first Adam became the personification of man’s rebellion and failures, the last Adam came to restore all that we lost. Every test and challenge was measured against Jesus, yet He did not succumb to the pressure. Jesus went through everything you are now going through and more. There is no way to measure the degree of suffering experienced by Him. Since He has gone through it all, His promise is to be with you while you are going through. He qualifies to lead you through whatever you may face in life. He’s been there. He is well…

“You shall eat the old harvest, and clear out the old because of the new.” Leviticus 26:10 Eating the old harvest is not a call to gluttony, but rather a challenge to release and dispense all that should be used. It is when we hoard what ought to be distributed that disqualifies one from full participation with God. His intention is to use each of His servants as conduit to reach others with what flows through us. As we enter into this New Year with and open heart and a clear conscience, room is available in us for an abundance of blessings from God to reach us. Yesterdays promises made and commitments are the opportunities to prove ones integrity when we rest at the end of the day with completed tasks. A fresh vision is given to visionaries who provide the impetus to see the old ones come to pass. The Spirit of God will grace the soul who is led to believe His Word and act accordingly. God wills to do a new thing among us. The New is before us, while the old is awaiting our consumption in order to make room.