“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…
- May 11, 2017
“Now may the God of peace who brought up our Lord Jesus from the dead, that great Shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, (21) make you complete in every good work to do His will, working in you what is well pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.” Hebrews 13:20-21 The restlessness of the soul was resulting from the waywardness of the heart. When you were determined to fix your own problems your own way, none of the benefits made available by God through our Lord Jesus Christ could be applied. Now that the struggle has ended as to whether the life of Christ was to be followed because His death was sufficient enough for His life to be our life, we are being made complete. What a difference now in comparison to then. All you need to do is remember how strained the struggle was and how difficult your life would be if His knowledge was absent. But now that you know Him, allow Him to complete the great work within you that He has begun. His objective is to complete you. When your ways please the Lord you…
- May 3, 2017
“Their job is to teach my people the difference between the holy and the common, to show them how to discern between unclean and clean.” Ezekiel 44:23 The job of the preacher is not merely to entertain people or to build buildings. Neither is he successful when he possesses the ability to draw large crowds. God has assigned us to teach the difference between the sacred things and the secular. We must do all to the glory of God, but not all things warrant the same attention. The neglect of foundational truths will erect structures of wood, hay, and stubble that cannot withstand the waves of adversity or the strong winds of erroneous doctrines. Only those who are well taught will be able stand being fully equipped with the full armor of God. They are led in the path of holiness and righteousness thus developing their discernment between good and evil, the clean and the unclean. The paralyzing sin of sameness has dulled the senses of many. But God will raise up His priests who have not bowed their knees to Baal and remain faithful for such a time as this.
- April 12, 2017
“By this we know love, because He laid down His life for us. And we also ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.” 1 John 3:16-17 The love of Jesus Christ is expressed by what He gave, not by what He gained. The power of the mighty may attain for them both position and privilege, but none of our trappings of success are sufficient enough to endear their heart with passion. One may even know that God is good and be impressed with His benevolence, but he is only left with an impression of love but may never know it. To know His love is to know why His death was a necessity. Our sins ran deeper than surface adjustments would satisfy and required more than a courteous and casual approach towards duty could ever fill. Jesus was fully aware of what pleases the Father thus He also knew what displeases Him. To know love is to know and desire what pleases God alone. True love frees one to obey without compulsion or coercion. Our lives are hidden in Christ thus His love flows through us to others. We cannot give too much because nothing is exclusively ours….
- April 6, 2017
“The way of peace they have not known, and there is no justice in their ways; they have made themselves crooked paths; whoever takes that way shall not know peace.” Isaiah 59:8-9 There is a peace offered by God that surpasses what the crowd demands. Yes, fairness in judgments must be executed, and the wild behavior of the wayward majority must be regulated by laws. But justice gives what justice demands. Laws alone cannot change the heart. It condemns both the accused and the accusers for all have sinned. It looks into the secret sins of the heart, and the evil practices done under the cloak of darkness. Those sins though unseen, cause dis-ease of the soul. Justice condemns the ways of the wicked. A death sentence is served to all who follow her path. How can one know the way to peace when the contributing forces of war are unknown? None are aware of why they love what is evil and hate what is good. Yet those who seek both justice and peace are blind to their own guilt. It is the right path that must be chosen if peace is ever to be known. Jesus Christ paid for…
- April 5, 2017
“You crown the year with Your goodness, And Your paths drip with abundance.” Psalm 65:11 Whatever happens and however it may happen, God ends with the placement of His crown of goodness. That is why He is called good even when things happen that are difficult to explain. When there are valleys there also must be mountains. The deeper the valley indicates the higher the mountain must be. Valley experiences are not always fatal. They can be but not necessarily must be fatal. His path is frightening to the fainthearted. Every wall in the valley contains a message that you have reached the point of no return. But as long as you are aware that He is leading you, you can trust Him throughout the journey. A crown awaits you at the end of the season of testing. Not only is there a crown, but there are rich blessings to be gathered along the way.
- March 17, 2017
“Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all, especially to those who are of the household of faith.” Galatians 6:10 The household of faith is the instrument in God’s hands to bring sinners to salvation. They are the carriers of the Gospel message with the potential of setting the captives free. To do good concerning those who are of faith is participating in the expansion of faith. Our practice must be to do good to all. Benevolence must be practiced until it becomes a habit. But special care must be given to those who are of the household of faith. It frees the hands to work and the soul from unnecessary burdens so that it may be extended to those to whom God will to reach. The world is awaiting the release of love bestowed from God that is free from pretense and selfish ambition. Therefore we must take care in prayerfully considering those who are faithful within the household assisting them so that they may distribute to others what they so desperately need. Where should we lend a helping hand, and where should we direct our giving? God unites our hearts to a household of faith…
- February 13, 2017
“Let love be without hypocrisy.” Roman 12:9 Love is to be an expression of one’s real character or actual behavior. It is a movement and not a state of being. God is love and as we move in His direction, His love within us moves us in the direction of becoming more like Jesus. It is the Spirit of love within our hearts that transform our personalities. Therefore we cannot take credit for any good that may generate from us. We know that it is the love of Christ within us that we have received from God as evidence that we belong to Him. Whatever may try to remain outside of love must be surrendered. It is a strain on occasion to walk in love among those who may not deserve it. But in light of His love released towards us before we were enabled to respond, we can love the unlovely. Remember that it is His love and not our own. It is not ours to withhold from those who He wills to love through us. Let it flow without our interference. We will benefit more than those who are the recipients.
- February 6, 2017
“that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ” 1 Peter 1:7 Faith is tested by the fires of adversity. It is often difficult to understand the challenges and interpret them as working together for our good, but each that we are allowed to face has significance in relation to our future. God tempers the fire and regulates each challenge so that none is beyond their usefulness to Him. Even though Satan meant it for evil, God transforms what would be evil and uses it for our good. It is not the external pressure that is His major emphasis, but it our faith in the midst of it that matters most to Him. Can faith withstand all and remain faith or does it disintegrate under pressure? All false perceptions are burned away in the fire and nothing remains but the genuine. Then He reveals Himself as being the same yesterday, today, and forevermore. He was there, He is there, and will remain with us through all that comes and goes. Our praise is genuine because…
- February 5, 2017
“Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others.” Philippians 2:4 There is an interest that ought to be equal to our own. There is no way for one to know this because there is none that is able to tell that make sense to our intellect. Why should we not know this truth that defines us as humans in the likeness and image of God? It is because we are fashioned to consider our own needs and war to make good on what our own heart desires. Self-interest is the path of least resistance. But to resist selfishness without strength, will lead to a loathing within the soul with the feeling of neglect. One will feel as if he is forced to deny himself merely because of a legal standard, but deep within his soul he feel is not fair. One can only be deeply concerned about the interest of others as much as his own with help from above. It is only when the love of God is accepted is he be empowered to release His love. He has a selfless love to give as evidence that His…
- February 4, 2017