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“But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts, and always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear.” 1 Peter 3:15  A sanctified heart is directed towards God alone. There is no other direction to which it may be turned that can satisfy the believer for he knows that only God alone can meet the needs existing deep in the recesses of the soul. There are many things around to lure him away from the position in which he stands. But he does not see things as others who are blind to the devices of the devil. The enemy constantly works in attempting to raise doubt in his heart. He has heard the Lord speak concerning His own. He is affirmed as being God’s Son, and continually dwelling in the place of God’s pleasure. Since his heart overflows with love, he has an answer for everyone. Because he is able to see beyond the current crisis, his answer remains prophetic. The pure and heart is able to see God. God is with him; therefore his hope is to take on the character of God….

“The blessing of the Lord makes one rich, and He adds no sorrow with it.” Proverb 10:22 There is the accumulation of wealth among the rich which brings sorrow and a wealth that endures to eternal life. When money becomes the god that replaces the true and living God, it then competes with what He wills to do in his life. That person, under the control of Mammon, will never know the richness that comes through full surrender to God’s will. The greatest blessing is the passion to love Him with one’s whole heart, soul, mind, and strength; then His joy becomes our own joy. When we are there, all that comes our way is managed and not owned. If we have an abundance of things, we find pleasure in having more options to use them in blessing the Lord. Money does not make the person; it merely gives him more options to express what he already has become. We should not allow anything to stand between us and the Lord, but at all times exercise diligence in pleasing Him. He gives us both the ability to accumulate wealth and the joy of the harvest.

“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…

“I will meditate on Your precepts, and contemplate Your ways.” Psalm 119:15 To give deep thought of what God requires is necessary if we are to align ourselves with His will. It is not a casual or passing thought that captures the truths contained in His Word, but rather to savor those morsels of insight until they become a part of our nature. God allows us to meditate on His precepts for our good. They will not become grievous requirements when His ways are better understood. He does not require more of us than He Himself is willing or has already done for us. When we are able to compare His requirements to His ways, we will rejoice because of the opportunity He has afforded us to more fully participate with Him in His work. His precepts prepare us for further participation in what He is doing. How glorious it is when we fit perfectly in His divine plans. That is why His Word must be hidden in our hearts that we would not sin against Him by omission or commission. We “will” where He stands, and receive the power to stand with Him for righteousness and against all things…

“Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free.” Galatians 5:1 The most secure place is the position of true freedom. Permission is granted to us by our Sovereign Authority to fully participate in a work that extends beyond the passions that once ruled over us. We once thought of freedom as being able to follow the dictates of our hearts. Our old selves willfully responded, as it had been conditioned, to the stimuli of influences surrounding us. Not having the ability to see beyond this, we did not understand that an offering was extended that we might be liberated from the confinement of a world that offered nothing beyond itself. The liberty in which we now stand is an inner freedom that makes us aware of things that exist beyond the confinements of a shrinking worldly existence. As our external life gives signs to decay and decline, the inner man is being renewed for its expression of eternal life. We are free to live forever the life that we now have come to experience in time.

“Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, to which you were also called and have confessed the good confession in the presence of many witnesses.” 1 Timothy 6:12 The battle continues to rage for the soul of every human. It requires one to have knowledge that the fight is on unless there be a state of lethargy leading to self-defeat. There are battles chosen by many people that require the total commitment of life and duty. Even if there is victory in those battles, what would be their gain? Yes, this is the fight that many may engage, but it is not the best. The good fight is the best one in which we may be engaged. It is the fight of faith that matters for all of eternity. All other celebrations of victory are short-lived because to gain the whole world and lose ones soul is vanity. God has called us to stand on the battle lines He has drawn. Only in standing there can we receive His rescue and victory. We are strengthened to maintain our focus on Jesus who has gone before us and is now leading us to triumph over the enemy.

“Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.” Ephesians 6:13 Careful preparation is required if one is to continue standing under the pressures of the world, the flesh, and the devil. The armed attack of the enemy which may work through all three, are aimed at the weakest part of our character. It is impossible for any to fully know all of his weaknesses. Surely in the areas of perceived strength temptations will come to test the strength of our commitment to God and the truths that we profess to uphold. This is why an accurate and spirit-guided articulation of the message from God is so important. Equally so, this is why the enemy of our souls would much rather see us doing any other thing that taking heed to the words that are given for the salvation of our souls. The whole armor of God, not just those portions that are comfortable and in fashion must be continually worn. The attacks do not come at a scheduled time, but when we least expect them to come. They may come successively if there…

“Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful.” Hebrews 10:23 Our confession is more than speaking words. It is our agreement with God in accomplishing what He has promised in us and through us. When our spirits have aligned with the Holy Spirit, we are provided a fresh and lively hope. Any secondary thought or effort will merely cloud the mind with clutter used to sway us away from God’s promises. God is faithful to deliver on every promise that He has made. Where do we stand and where should we stand in relation what has been given to us? Our confession is more precious than silver and gold. To believe God because we are in position to see Him as faithful even when we are challenged is the greater blessing. This is evidence that faith is established within our hearts. This kind of faith will produce a hope that will not disappoint. It is borne out of love and matured through experiences. None of these, whatever they are, will separate us from confessing that Jesus is Lord over every circumstance.

“We are of God. He who knows God hears us; he who is not of God does not hear us. By this we know the spirit of truth and the spirit of error.” 1 John 4:6 The surety of the gospel message is an unflinching confidence that God is with him. God provides the messenger an assurance that all who love the Christ of the message will also love and accept the Christ within His messenger. The message and the Messenger can never be divided. As he further yields himself to Christ, that which is of Christ flows freely through him without any restraint. He does not rely upon a response from the people, even though positive responses are encouraging. But his motive is to please the One who sent him on the mission and nothing else. The Spirit of Christ can recognize Himself inside of him. He can make such bold proclamations as, “we are of God!” he doesn’t have to cautiously and timidly approach the subject. He is confident and radiant as he stands as God’s representative. He who is of God hears the one sent forth by God. His sheep both hears and knows His voice and…

“Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.“ Psalm 119:105 In a dark place, all things seem to be the same. No distinction can be made between a man and a mannequin if both stand together. Things that are false and counterfeit appear to be more perfect than things that are real in dim light. They are painted with beauty and are a piece of art, but are lifeless idols. Without the light of the Word of God, we would naturally gravitate in the direction of that appear to be real, but is only real and beautiful to the spiritually blind. Our senses once ruled us and every decision was made on the basis of our perception of reality. The darkness was not just before us, but the darkness was in us as well. Then the light of the Word invaded our world, and all things changed!  We were able to see the nature of all things and the danger that lay ahead by following the path of the blind. The very Word that changed us was also there to guide us. We have been changed in order to discern the difference between the real…