Worship

O Come, Let us Worship

O come, let us worship and bow down: let us kneel before the LORD our maker.”

Psalms 95:6

O come, let us worship, for He is our God, and we are the pasture, and the sheep of his hand [Psalms 95:6-7]. Is He, our God? Are we the sheep of His pasture or someone’s else pasture? When I think of sheep in the pasture, I think of peace, rest, and serenity. Yet, for many it is anything but that. Our soul is not in a peaceful state to where we can worship. For some worship does not apply to them at all. Many times, I have heard the excuses of I can’t sing, therefore I cannot worship. This is far from the real truth, and it is not because you cannot carry a tune. If King David can be made a fool by dancing and singing before the Lord, then so can we. O come, let us worship and bow down to the Lord our God. Can we not bow down to our Lord? Maybe we should ask God as to why we are not able to bow down and worship our Lord.

The interesting thing is that many can go to a rock concert and have no problem worshipping the band who is playing the music. I have seen many people whisper the words of the song and singing even when they know they are not singing in tune. You can whisper the words of praise to our Lord God. The Hebrew word for worship is “shachah” which means to bow down before another. This word for worship takes on action in that we must be doing something before another and that is bowing down or prostrating ourselves in homage to the Lord God. Can we recognize and respect God for who He is? Can our hearts not become hardened before our Lord, but rather instead can we have a willingness to follow him into the green pastures. It is the green pastures where we bow our heads and eat the food and drink in the living waters of His life. The word willingness is the key to new heights in revelations and visions. We must remember that true worshippers can only worship the Father in spirit and in truth. Nothing else matters to the Lord then to have his children come and sit before him and truly worship him. As we worship him new revelations come forth and His healing begins to flow by his Spirit to those who need it within the congregation.

But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeks such to worship him.”

John 4:23

The Father seeks those who are in the spirit and in truth to worship Him. Why? Because God is a Spirit. Now listen carefully what the apostle Paul said, “Now the Lord is that Spirit and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.” Liberty means to be free from oppression. Free from bondage and from whatever yoke we may have had around our necks. If we cannot worship, we must have some kind of bondage that is keeping us from worshipping our Lord. Did not Christ make us free from any yoke of bondage? If we have liberty, we have peace. What the world needs now is love, sweet love as the song lyrics state, but we must also have peace. Jesus Christ is our peace, for he has overcome the evil one. We are no longer under Satan’s power. We now can have peace with God. That is why the apostle Paul exclaims in the following scripture to:

Stand fast, therefore, in the liberty with which Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage.”

Galatians 5:1

Stand fast my friend, in the freedom you have in Christ. Stand fast means to not yield yourself to any other position. Christ is our sure foundation, and He is our peace. Let us be assured to whom we are worshipping. Let us be honest within our own heart where we stand. We must hear the words of Jesus when He mentioned about God’s commandments versus man’s tradition. Why did Jesus say that with their mouth, and lips they honor me, but their heart is far from me. But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men, [see Matthew 15:8-9]. Teaching the commandments of men instead of God. Are we free in Christ from the things which the world would bind us? Are we free from severe self-discipline to any form of righteousness or from any form of indulgence? Do we not live under the grace of God? One must remember that God had the physical temple built upon the earth, but even the rituals of the temple could not change men’s conscience toward God. We can only receive a good conscience through the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Christ is the perfect sacrifice for all our sin. If we live and walk in the spirit of Christ, then we can also worship in spirit and in truth. Our worship is not in vain since our conscience has been cleansed by the blood of Jesus Christ.

The whole point of the issue of traditions, is that it becomes men’s way instead of God’s way. Worshipping God should not become a burden in practice. If it is a burden, then one must look at the heart as to why it is a burden. If worship is a burden, then we must ask God to search us and to reveal the cause. We must remember that it is Christ who reconciled all things unto himself [see Colossians 1:20]. Reconcile means to change thoroughly. I am changed in my actions and thoughts from doing evil to doing good. He is renewing us every day to have a right spirit. He will restore us with the joy of his salvation. Let us examine ourselves and repent from anything that may withhold us from worshipping the Lord. Let us ask the Lord to give us a heart of worship. A heart of worship that is directed by the Holy Spirit where the gifts of the Spirit are displayed to the glory of God.

When ye come together, every one of you hath a psalm, hath a doctrine, hath a tongue, hath a revelation, hath an interpretation. Let all things be done unto edifying.”

1 Corinthians 14:26

When we come together the gifts of the Holy Spirit are working within the congregation to the edifying of every person within the body of Christ who hears and listens to the message. We can also worship and sing unto the lord a new song and declare His works within the congregation. In our own personal time, we can worship and sing to the Lord any time of the day. This is exciting and for many of us we have yet to get to this special place of worship. In reality, if you live and walk in the Spirit, every moment becomes a time of worship since we are considered the living temple of God. We just have to acknowledge it and believe that He will dwell and walk with us.

For you are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.”

2 Corinthains 6:16

When we get to this place of worshipping Him every day, our walk will be in the character of Christ where love and peace reigns. This is the place I myself desire to be. No matter what is happening around me, I desire to be in His love and peace every day. As we come close to the end of this year with only 6 weeks away until Christmas day, let us remember to whom we are worshipping. Many are wondering how they can buy gifts for their own family. Remember it is the little things that you do that counts. Tell your children that you love them and hug them close, for they are a heritage from the Lord. Tell your wife or husband that you love them. Remember that we all labor together in Christ and He is our example. Let us remember the babe born in Bethlehem and sing Christmas songs with the family. This is a small example of worship to our Lord, and it may help you to understand its meaning just a little bit better. The joy of an infant born in this world and who becomes our sacrifice is worth singing about.

And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.”

Luke 2:13-14

Glory to God in the highest and on earth peace, good will toward all men. Christ was born in Bethlehem and has become our salvation. Christ is our peace for He has reconciled us back to God. Let not our heart grow weary in giving Him praise every day. Bless the Lord, O my soul, and all that is within me, bless his Holy Name [Psalms 103:1]. No matter where you are today, you can worship him from your own lips and read Psalms as another way of worshipping our Lord God. It is your heart of worship as his child that He desires. Whatever rituals we may perform will perish with the using, but His love will endure forever along with His word. Let us be the sheep of His pasture. Let us worship Him in spirit and in truth. Let us have a willing heart of worship. O come, let us worship and bow down.

NOTE: This is the last devotional for the year 2022. Check back after the New Year for next year devotionals. In the meantime, you can read any devotional that you may have missed during this year. I pray that God’s blessing be upon each person who has read these devotionals. I pray that God may draw you close to him. We all live in a world that is full of uncertainty. However, no matter what the circumstances we may find ourselves in, God is with us. He will perform and show himself to each individual His works of healing and provision. Stand firm in whom you believe in and go with God. Count it a blessing to be with friends and family this Holiday season. Check out the “All About Worship” page to read more and to listen to over 3 hours of worship songs. Now is the time to worship, for He dwells within you.

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Holiness, Uncategorized

The Holy Temple of God

And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.”

2 Corinthians 6:16

The holy temple of God was built twice and destroyed. We can only imagine the beauty of the first holy temple of God that King Soloman built. The second temple was built after the Persian exile and had some renovation done by King Herod before the Roman empire destroyed it. Many people wonder about its former glory and its usage by those of the Jewish faith who came yearly for the holy holidays such as the Passover. The Passover is one of the most celebrated Jewish holidays and it is in remembrance of the Israelites’ departure out of Egypt. In Jerusalem the “Temple Mount” is said to be the place of the original Holy Temple of God. Today, the “Dome of the Rock” sits on the Temple Mount which was built during the Mamluk times. The “Dome of the Rock” has its roots in Islamic beliefs. The meaning for the Dome of the Rock is the Ascension of the Prophet to heaven, or where heaven and earth meet. Let us remember the marvelous story of what happened after Jesus yielded up the spirt in Matthew chapter 27.

And behold, the veil of the temple was torn in two from the top to the bottom; and the earth did quake, and the rocks were split; and the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints that slept were raised, and came out of the graves after his resurrection, and went into the holy city, and appeared unto many.”

Matthew 27:51-53
The ark of the covenant

The Holy of Holies was a small room at the back of the hall of the temple and it had a cloth partition that separated it from the Holy Place where the golden lampstand and the shewbread table stood. Only the priest could enter the Holy of Holies and that was once a year on the Day of Atonement. This curtain partition between the two rooms, the Holy Place and the Holy of Holies was torn from the top to the bottom. This opened up the Holy of Holies to the outside world. It was said that during the Roman Empire invasion of the Temple in Jerusalem that Titus went into the Holy of Holies and found nothing in the room. Titus found nothing in the temple for Jesus, our sacrifice for sin had risen and now sits on the right hand of God. There is much speculation as to where the ark of the covenant went. However, if you read about God’s appearance to Solomon in 1 Kings chapter 9, you will read about Israel being cut off from the house of the Lord due to them worshipping other Gods. Under King Nebuchadnezzar, his captain of the guard plundered and burned the house of the Lord [see 2 Kings 25:8-9]. The second temple under King Herod on the Temple Mount was also destroyed by fire. Some wonder where the ark of the covenant went. It is now in heaven [see Revelation 11:19]. I am always baffled how man goes about destroying his environment. It does not matter what it is destruction seems to be on the minds of man. Let us remember that the second temple, God did not instruct any man to build like the first temple. There is no agreement whatsoever that His temple should be linked to any kind of idol worship. That is why the apostle Paul stated that every man’s work will be tested. It is tested to find out what the real motive of man is.

Every man’s work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man’s work of what sort it is.”

1 Corinthians 3:13

God will test every man’s work with fire to reveal the truth about their work whether or not it is worthy. If it is worthy, God will give a reward. God will reveal in what manner or situation your work stands in, whether for good or bad. God will reveal the truth of the matter of the heart of man. God will reveal the fake news, the fake prophets, and whatever else is not of the Lord. It was Jesus who said, “you do not know to whom you worship,” [John 4:22]. We have so many iconic items that we worship, and the truth is we really do not know what it is that we are worshipping these days. Any kind of virtue has gone from what we are worshipping and there is no moral value tied to what we are worshipping these days. The removal of the temple of God is the one sign that the Lord God himself is the only one who truly is Holy. Any other item becomes idol worship. Think about it, the temple itself with its objects could not change man’s consciousness’. Our life is built upon Jesus Christ as the only foundation that is laid [see 1 Corinthians 3:11]. We are being built up by the spirit of God. We do not need a big building in order to worship God since we are the temple of God. Our salvation is a free gift from God that we receive by faith. It is only by faith that we have received eternal life. God provided the way through Christ Jesus. Jesus has reconciled us back to God. Whatever we do now, we do by the glory of God, for we are now the temple of God. The apostle Paul stated, “know you not that you are the temple of God?” We were bought with a price and now belong to God. We now belong to the body of Christ, and we therefore should glorify God in whatever task He has chosen for us to do.

You also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ.”

1 Peter 2:5

We are lively stones because Jesus Christ is the chief cornerstone that has been laid. We are being built up into a holy spiritual house in the Lord. We do not fashion ourselves according to our former lusts or ways of the world, but we fashion ourselves after the Lord Jesus Christ who has freed us from the bondage that was under the power of Satan. We are now the children of God. The son of God came to destroy the works of the devil. We are born again by the incorruptible word of God which lived and abided forever, [see 1 Peter 1:23]. We are to be holy in all manner of life, for He is holy.

For through him we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father. Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints, and of the household of God; And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone; In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord: In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit.

Ephesians 2:18-22

This is astounding and for me unfathomable to conceive that I would be of the household of God and to grow into a holy temple in the Lord. The very Presence of God in all His fullness is now dwelling in our spirit right now. How amazing is this. How amazing it is to be framed together and grow into a holy temple in the Lord. Out of his sanctuary will flow rivers of living water and we will all drink from it to become a holy temple of God where we will grow fruit every month. As we are sheltered under the mighty hand of God, the living waters shall be our food and healing will flow from it to all who are in need. As we rest in the Presence of the Lord, He will take away the dead branch in us and all the deadness of our own self to bring forth new growth. We must grow in grace and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Get ready to be His Holy temple and grow into the trees of righteousness. As He gives you living water, you will bear new fruit for the glory of God. Become His habitation of worship as a Holy temple of God. All Praise and Glory to the Lord of Host.

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Righteousness

The Trees of Righteousness

To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that he might be glorified.”

Isaiah 61:3

Who are the “Trees of Righteousness”? I have never heard about the “trees of righteousness” have you? In this verse it references to those who might be called the “trees of righteousness” who are the planting of the Lord. The planting of the Lord . . . those who hear him calling them, those who are mourning, and those who have the spirit of heaviness. Oh, how we need beauty for ashes and the oil of joy today. We need to know that our God hears us when we have a heavy heart. These are those who have believed in him and those who have been grafted in by God. How amazing that the Lord has a personal interest in all who are grafted into the vine of His lordship and fellowship. The root of the tree is the Lord Jesus Christ himself who is the righteous one. Jesus himself is the gift of righteousness to the world. The grace of God became the gift of grace by one man, Jesus Christ.

For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous.”

Romans 5:19

It was Adam’s disobedience to God that caused sin to become the character of man towards doing evil. Everyone is tempted when they are drawn away by their own lust and enticed, [see James 1:14]. Adam’s sin brought judgment upon all men to condemnation, but the righteousness of one the free gift came upon men to justification of life, [see Romans 5:18]. It was Jesus Christ who humbled himself and become obedient unto death on the cross that we might be made righteous. It is by faith in Jesus that we become righteous. The Hebrew word for righteousness is “‘tsedeq’ and it means ‘rightness or justice.’ This means that a human being is morally good. This means that humans have a genuine respect for all people. It was Jesus who was anointed by God to preach the good news unto the meek, and to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captive, to comfort all that mourn, oil of joy for the mourning, garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness and so forth. In a world that is torn by injustices every day, we need to know that there is hope for something better than the failure of our human condition. Those who are righteous have the Lord’s ear. He hears their cry.

The eyes of the Lord are upon the righteous, and his ears are open unto their cry. The face of the Lord is against those who do evil.”

Psalms 34:15-16

The Lord hears the cry of the righteous for they are the planting of the Lord. They are the ones who have been established by their faith in Christ. They have put on the armor of Light by casting off the works of darkness. They have put on the Lord Jesus Christ and do not allow the works of the flesh to rule their hearts. They are the ones who put on the whole armor of God in order to stand against the devious works of the devil.

Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ; 

2 Corinthians 10:5

The righteous ones are not deceived for they know who they are in Christ. They know that whoever abides in the Lord Jesus will not sin, for the purpose of the Son of God was to destroy the works of the devil, [see 1 John 3:8]. Those who are righteous are those who abide in the vine. They know that without Jesus they can do nothing. Only if they abide in Him are all things possible.

If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, you shall ask what you will, and it shall be done unto you.”

John 15:7

Ask what you will, and it shall be done unto you. It shall be done unto you for the father desires that you bear much fruit. The father recognizes Jesus in you. Have you ever thought about this. The apostle Paul did, for he stated that “we are laborer’s together with God: ye are God’s husbandry, ye are God’s building,” [1 Corinthians 3:8]. This implies fellowship and communion with God. If you are abiding in the vine, you have fellowship with God. If you are God’s building then you are the temple of God, and the Spirit of God dwells in you. You have become a holy temple. The apostle Paul stated, “for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are,” [see 1 Corinthians 3:17]. We must learn to see through the eyes of the Lord God, and it is only through the Holy Spirit that we gain wisdom and understanding in knowing God and how He sees us through His Son Jesus Christ. In this we see God’s desire for all mankind.

“Thy people also shall be all righteous: they shall inherit the land for ever, the branch of my planting, the work of my hands, that I may be glorified.”

Isaiah 60:21

We become the branch of His planting, the work of His hands, that He may be glorified. Christ is the gift of God, and so is righteousness a gift of God. We do not work for it since it is a gift received by faith. We must remember that Jesus Christ is himself the chief corner stone. Jesus is our peace that has broken down the middle wall of partition. We who once were aliens and strangers to the covenants of promise and having no hope in the world have been drawn near by the blood of Christ. Is Christ our peace? Yes, He is our peace and righteousness. It is through Christ that we become the trees of righteousness for we are grafted into the true vine who is Christ. Through Christ we become and grow into a holy temple in the Lord. We are being built together for a habitation of God through the Spirit, [see Ephesians 2:22]. How exciting it is to become a holy temple of God. Can we even envision such a mystery as this.

The apostle of Paul wanted us to know that we are no longer strangers and sojourners, but fellow citizens with the saints, and of the household of God [see Ephesians 2:19]. Are you not of the household of God? Have you believed in Jesus as the Son of God, who died for our sins, arose from the grave, and is now sitting at the right hand of God? Are you not born again into a new man by faith in Jesus Christ? Have you been reconciled to God? There is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner that has repented. Can you imagine that? Joy in the presence of the angels over one lonely sinner who has repented and ask for forgiveness. Only God is able to save us from our sin. Only God can create a new man. Only God can provide a new way of living in this world. Paul exclaimed that all men should see what the fellowship of the mystery is, which from the beginning of the ages hath been hidden in God, who created all things by Jesus Christ, [see Ephesians 3:9]. Let the love of Christ be grounded and rooted in your heart so that you may grow into a tree of righteousness for all to see how Christ is glorified within you to the praise of His glory.

The Holy Temple of God
The Holy Temple of God

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Holy Spirit

The Anointing

But you have an unction from the Holy One, and you know all things.”

1 John 2:20

The anointing oil has taken on a religious meaning to the point of some mystical phenomena that has happened. Throughout history items of Christ have been known to carry some kind of spiritual power like the holy grail. The holy grail is the cup that Jesus drank out of at the Last Supper. It was said to have healing powers, but for the knighthood it was a spiritual journey towards eternal life. The journey to know more about God and His son Jesus Christ, but most of all it was a journey in learning how to gain immortality. The quest itself was a test of the character of a knight. It was to see if a knight was worthy of service to their King. The quest was the search for spiritual enlightenment, but it also revealed the weaknesses of the human heart of man to which they had to overcome.

Every human being is on some kind of quest either for good or bad. That quest is a revelation in who they are as a person. The quest builds character in who they become as an individual knight. Some will find the light, and some will not see it. The quest to see the light are those who are seeking the kingdom of God. Walking in light speaks to the fellowship we have with the Father and his Son Jesus Christ. That fellowship only speaks to the truth of who we are in Christ and that we are sinners who are forgiven because we confess our sins to God and each other. We know that we are weak, but through Christ we have become strong. The blood of Christ is the divine provision for our atonement. Our walk should reveal the character of Christ within us. There should be no hatred in the body of Christ.

He that loveth his brother abided in the light, and there is no occasion of stumbling in him.”

1 John 2:10

Those who walk in love will not cause a brother or sister to stumble. Those who walk in love will help their brother or sister by edifying them and building them up in the Lord. They will be doing the work of Jesus. What did Jesus say to his disciples after he washed their feet?

For I have given you an example, that you should do as I have done to you.”

John 13:15

Jesus is our example, and we should heed his call and not our own individual calling. We are not greater than our Lord Jesus Christ even though some may think they are. This was in the very next verse [16] of John chapter 13. He that is sent is not greater than the person who sent him. There is no competition for a position in Christ or even a special service that a person may be called to. Have you heard about Stephen, a man full of faith and the Holy Spirit who was chosen to serve tables and the widows. Stephen had done great wonders and miracles among the people. Stephen went out in a blaze of glory seeing the glory of God and Jesus standing at God’s right hand [see Acts chapter 6 & 7]. Stephen a man who not only helped the widows but preached to the Sanhedrin about the prophets of God and how the people always resisted the Holy Spirit. He had the unction from the Holy One and spoke the truth to the Sanhedrin. In the Old Testament only the Kings, prophets, and priests were anointed with oil, but in the New Testament something has changed.

But the anointing which ye have received of him abides in you, and you need not that any man teaches you; but as the same anointing teaches you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, you shall abide in him.”

1 John 2:27

Who was John referring to when he said, “but the anointing which you have received?” Who is it that teaches us? We must go back to the gospel of John chapter 14, verse 26, which states that the “Comforter” who is the Holy Spirit whom the Father will send in Jesus’ name shall teach you all things. We must remember that the Holy Spirit will testify of Jesus. A lying spirit will deny that Jesus is the Christ, but not the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is the anointing that is sent by the Father to each person who believes that Jesus is the Son of God come in the flesh. This is the love of God to reconcile the world back to God.

Having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself; by him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven.”

Colossians 1:20

Christ has reconciled us back to God. What a glorious action of God to bring us back into fellowship with him. This should stir your heart to have the anointing, the unction from the Holy One who will teach you all things and that you will walk in it. The unction that will teach you the ways of God, the wisdom of God, that you may be made perfect in Jesus Christ. We must be settled in the Holy Spirit and the gifts of the Spirit. If we are not, we cannot become perfect in Christ. We are walking in unbelief, for we are not willing to receive the Holy Spirit. The hope of the gospel is Jesus Christ who prayed that the Father would send the Holy Spirit. Do not become stiff-necked and resist the Holy Spirit like the Sanhedrin. We need that anointing oil to flow in us and to perfect us in Christ Jesus. We need that anointing oil to abide in us and help us in our weaknesses. We need that anointing oil in order that we may be bold like Stephen who was full of the Holy Spirit. The unction is also for service.

How can you serve God without the unction [the Holy Spirit]. You can’t. If you do it is done in the flesh and not in the Spirit of God. “The flesh lusted against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would,” [see Galatians 5:17]. We must have the outworking of the Holy Spirit which is Christ in us the hope of glory. If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit. There is no glory in man, for all glory goes to God in what He has given unto us. He has given unto us His Son, and the Holy Spirit. The Christian character is produced by the Holy Spirit. It is from glory to glory that we are being changed into His image. Where the Spirit of the Lord is there is liberty, [see 2 Corinthians 3:18]. Why did Jesus say, “if any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink, [John 7:37]?” What would we be drinking? If we believe on Jesus as the scripture has said, Jesus stated that out of his or her heart shall flow rivers of living water. Are you thirsty?

If you are thirsty then come to Jesus for the living water that flows down from the Father. This is the Holy Spirit that gives us life and the way to fellowship within the body of Christ. This is the mystery of the power of God. The working where great wonders and miracles will happen among the people. God will bless those of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones, [Isaiah 57:15]. If you need your spirit revived and your heart, come to Jesus and pray for it. “Will thou not revive us again; that thy people may rejoice in thee, [Psalms 85:5]?” Let us not go back to being foolish, He will show us mercy and grant us salvation. “Truth shall spring out of the earth; and righteousness shall look down from heaven,” [Psalms 85:11]. Let us walk in his steps and see His glory. Let the unction from the Holy One come and fill us forever. Let us walk in it and speak in boldness of the coming of our Lord. Let us become His trees of righteousness.

Trees of Righteousness

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Overcomer

I Have Overcome the World

These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.”

John 16:33

These things were spoken in the world, life isn’t a bed of roses. I get it that we are all stressed out. To bite the bullet and do something about it. Starting over again is so hard to do. I am sure you have heard one of these spoken words. When things in your life are turned upside down and you find yourself on the bottom, how can you go on in life. It is bad enough when you lose someone, but to have your car stolen or broken into, or to have your things lost due to a storm or fire, is devasting. Believe me I know, for I lost everything in a house fire. No amount of dry cleaning could get the smell out of the clothes when smoke invaded it. I was at the height of my performing artist career and in the process of completing a gospel album. It is an empty feeling when you have no place to go home to and lay down in your own bed to sleep. An individual’s welcome is worn out quickly when you are staying at a friend’s house and its true even if it is a relative. It took two years to get our house built, yet I can remember a man telling me at the Bread of Life Mission how he walked away from his home and family, for he just could not take it anymore. The stress and responsibility were just too much.

The “stress factor” is real since it is a physical, mental, or emotional factor that causes bodily or mental tension. Everyday can be stressful if we allow it to consume us. God knows that as humans we need that vacation and a break to rest from the everyday grime. Even missionaries that come home from the field are in need of rest from bodily and mental tension. We are in need of renewal for our body and spirit. Maybe that is why God talked about the sabbath day in where you rest on the seventh day. We need our minds renewed along with our tired bodies. These words were written in Hebrews.

There remained therefore a rest to the people of God.”

Hebrews 4:9

There remained therefore a rest to the people of God and just like God rested on the seventh day so should we rest and cease from our own work. Have you heard the words of Jesus say, “the sabbath was made for man, and not man for the sabbath,” [Mark 2:27]. The very next words out of Jesus are “therefore, the Son of man is Lord also of the sabbath.” Our Lord Jesus Christ is Lord of the sabbath. This refers to the deity of Christ where He is our high priest and has the right to heal and eat out of the storehouse of God. Only those of the priesthood could eat out of the storehouse of the temple. Jesus was called a high priest after the order of Melchizedek [see Hebrews chapter 5]. This is important in that we as Christians must enter into that rest. To enter in is to identify with Christ. That is why we labor to enter that rest [see Hebrews 4:11]. It is because of unbelief or disobedience that we have not entered that rest. How can we become overcomers if we cannot even discern between good and evil.

The word of God is living and powerful. It is the two-edged sword that pierces and divides the soul and spirit. Our God knows all about the human condition.

All the ways of a man are clean in his own eyes, but the Lord weighs the spirits.

Proverbs 16:2

The Lord determines man’s spirits. The Lord discerns the thoughts and intents of the heart of man. We struggle to enter in because we are dealing with our own human nature, or because we do not fully believe the word of God, or something is holding us back from entering in. That is why our senses are not able to discern because we have not fully identified with Christ that we are his child. We have not been taught the full meaning of the word of God and so we are still babes only drinking the milk. In order to overcome we must progress towards maturity. If we fall away from God, we will lose the blessings of God and fall under judgement. Do not presume anything but receive his truth for your actions. Remember that whatever is not of faith is sin. Repent, read the word of God, and listen to his voice. Take seriously your position in Christ and put all things under him including your body.

Put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfill its lusts.”

Romans 13:14

Are we putting on the Lord Jesus Christ? Or are we fulfilling the lust of the flesh? These are questions that we should be asking. We do this daily in surrendering our life to the Lord, to follow him, and obey him by reading the word. If Jesus used the word of God to overcome the devil, then we must do the same in order to become overcomers of this world. We must enter into that rest and cease from our own ways in order to find the way of God. Let go of what is holding you down and by the grace of God seek him with all of your heart. We must become likeminded with Christ and have the unity of the spirit of Christ. Listen to what John said in 1st John chapter two in verse 14, “I have written unto you, young men, because you are strong, and the word of God abides in you, and you have overcome the wicked one.” Does the word of God abide in you? Have you overcome the wicked one? It is by the blood of the lamb and word of our testimony that we have overcome the accuser who is the devil. John tells us not to love the world and the things in this world. For if anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him [see 1 John 2:15].

This world system is under Satan’s control where greed, selfishness, and pleasure abound, and it is kept there by force. That is the reason why there is suffering in this world. That is the reason why Jesus came that we might have life. That is the reason why Jesus has overcome until all his enemies are under his footstool. Christ has made us alive and to sit in heavenly places in Christ Jesus, for we are his workmanship created in Christ Jesus unto good works [ see Ephesians 2:6,10]. Even though we shall have tribulation in this world, Jesus states, “be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.” It is Jesus who has overcome the world. But if we stand in Christ in faith, we too have overcome the world. Whatever kind of trouble we may be in, if we belong to Christ, we have overcome. We may need a time out to meditate and think it through and even wrestle it out with God through prayer. Telling God how we feel and what is stressing us. The end result should be one of peace and seeing yourself as overcomers in Christ Jesus. That man who left his wife and children got saved and renewed in the spirit of his mind and went back home to his wife and children.

Being an overcomer is knowing your position in Christ. The son of God came to demonstrate that He might destroy the works of the devil, [see 1John 3:8]. Sometimes we have to shake off the devil by refusing the devil entrance into our own mind. Remember Jesus said, “get thee behind me Satan.” We can do the same. We rebuke Satan’s control in our life. Our life now belongs to the Lord, and we now live unto the Lord. That is why John stated in 1st John 4:4, “You are of God, little children, and have overcome them; because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.” I praise God that Christ has overcome the world, and that he is greater in me then Satan in this world. Let us know our position in Christ and its importance in the fact that we are now overcomers in this world. Keep the faith and be of good cheer, for we have put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and we are victorious through him. Walk in His peace. In Jesus’s name, Amen.

anointing oil
Anointing Oil

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Holy Spirit

Have you received the Holy Ghost?

He said unto them, have ye received the Holy Ghost since ye believed? And they said unto him, we have not so much as heard whether there be any Holy Ghost.”

Acts 19:2

Have you received the Holy Spirit after you believed in Jesus Christ? I wonder how many Christians who profess that they believe in Christ have not yet received the Holy Spirit. Throughout history the subject of the Holy Spirit may be one of the most debated topics. For most church leaders it is a matter of control in the body of Christ. Are we missing something that God intended for our life as a Christian? We may sing about the Holy spirit, but not allow His movement within the congregation. The Holy Spirit is a mystery for many, yet it is the vehicle in which God moves to bless his people within the congregation. It is the Holy Spirit who brings conviction within our heart to change the way we are living. What did Jesus say about the Holy Spirit. Is the Holy Spirit our comforter? Yes, the comforter is the Spirit of truth, and who testifies of Jesus [see John 15:26]. Let us look into the gospel of John in chapter 16.

And when the Spirit [he] is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment.”

John 16:8

This is known as the threefold ministry of the Holy Spirit. Read on to the next three verses in John chapter 16. The Spirit convicts us of sin because there are those who do not believe in Jesus. The Spirit convicts us about righteousness, for Jesus goes to the Father and the Father see us only through his son who is our righteousness. The Spirit convicts us about judgment for the prince of this world is judged who is the devil.

If we do not have the Spirit, who will guide us into truth? Jesus said it is the Spirit who will guide us into all truth, for he shall not speak of himself, but whatever he shall hear, that shall he speak, and he will show us things to come, [see John 16:13-14]. It is the Spirit that helps us to glorify Christ. Jesus said, “if I be lifted up from the earth, I will draw all men unto me,” John 12:32. How can we draw close to him without the Holy Spirit’s guidance. Jesus also said, “And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you forever;” John 14:16. We will never be alone if we have the Holy Spirit living within our heart. Will you give your heart to the Lord?

Will you give the Lord your heart?

We surrender our heart and ourselves to the Lord so He can create in us a new clean heart. We must have our stony cold heart changed.

“A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you a heart of flesh.”

Ezekiel 36:26

Ah, yes, a new spirit will He put within you, and He will give you a heart of flesh. A heart of flesh for He has awakened you spiritually to the love of God. Do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God the apostle Paul said in Ephesians 4:30, whereby you are sealed unto the day of redemption. We are sealed with the Holy Spirit of God to which Jesus prayed that he would send to each person who believes in Him. The apostle Paul was asking those who were disciples of John the Baptist in Acts chapter 19, “to whom where you baptized.” To whom where you baptized into? Paul said that John baptized unto repentance, but it is Jesus who you should believe in who came after John the Baptist. Paul than laid his hands upon them and the Holy Spirit came on them and they spoke with tongues and prophesied. Glory to God they got the baptism in the Holy Spirit. All we have to do is ask for the Holy Spirit to come upon us. Jesus provided the way, and He gives us the comforter who is the Holy Spirit. The Jews were astonished as to the words of Jesus when he said, “how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him,” Luke 11:13.

This is that which was spoken through the prophet Joel, [see Acts:2:16]. This is that, meaning to what was spoken previously. The prophet Joel prophesied that God would pour out His Spirit upon all flesh. This would happen in the latter days in the church, but it also relates to when Israel will return to the Lord. Yet, the Holy Spirit has been poured out upon those who believe. The outpouring of the Holy Spirit has brought the charismatic movement through the centuries, and it is still happening around the world.

Would God that all the Lord’s people were prophets, and that the Lord would put his Spirit upon them.”

Numbers 11:29

This is Moses’ desire and what the prophet Joel declared. All will prophesy and have visions and dreams as the Spirit falls down upon them. Be sure that God will fulfill all what Joel prophesied. These are exciting times for those who are charismatic Christians who have placed their faith in Christ Jesus and are baptized in the Holy Spirit. How can you hear his voice if you do not have the Holy Spirit as your comforter. It is the Spirit that searched all things and the deep things of God. This is not man’s wisdom, for who can know the things of God. It is what the Holy Spirit teaches and through the Spirit we are able to compare spiritual things with spiritual as Paul stated in 1 Corinthians 2:10-13. You do not have to fear the Holy Spirit when you ask the Father for the baptism of the Spirit.

I remember a worship leader who asked me to give him the Holy Spirit. I told him I could not give him the Holy Spirit, for he must ask the Father for the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit only comes from the Father and Jesus prayed to the Father that he would give the comforter to those who would ask. He got it in a parking lot. Yes, the Holy Spirit came down upon him in a parking lot as he was trying to get into his car. Amazing. We receive it through faith and God answers our prayer.

“Wherefore I give you to understand, that no man speaking by the Spirit of God calleth Jesus accursed: and that no man can say that Jesus is the Lord, but by the Holy Ghost.”

1 Corinthians 12:3

Anyone who curses Jesus and who confesses not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God. That person is not of the Spirit of God. Those who are baptized in the Holy Ghost will point to Christ as Lord overall and believe that Jesus came in the flesh and has died for our sins. If they do not confess this, then they are of the spirit of antichrist [see 1 John 4:1]. John tells us that the antichrist is already in the world. That is why we must have the Holy Spirit as our comforter. But we must also test and try the spirit to see if it is of God. John gives us instruction to try the spirits whether they are of God. We need never fear as to what spirit we have when within our heart we confess Jesus as Lord who came in the flesh, died and arose from the grave. We can ask the spirit this question to see if it is of God. We must remember that we are the temple of God and that His Spirit dwells within us.

It is written “be ye holy for I am holy,” [1Peter 1:16]. Our hearts are purified for the service of the Lord. That is why the apostle Paul stated, “we are laborers together with God; you are God’s cultivated field, you are God’s building,” [1 Corinthians 3:9]. Our foundation is built upon Jesus Christ, and He has called us friends. His love now reigns, and He instructs us to walk in love. Receive the Holy Spirit in the name of Jesus and walk in love every day.

Overcome Evil

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Confession, Jesus Christ, One Shepherd

I am the Door

Behold, I stand at the door, and knock; if any man hears my voice, and open the door, I will come into him, and will sup with him, and he with me.

Revelation 3:20

Do you hear Him knocking at your door? Are you safe within the sheepfold of God? Jesus said, ‘I am the door of the sheep,” [see John 10:7]. How can Jesus come and sup with us? If anyone claims to be Christ, we know it is not true, or do we? Jesus told us in verse 8 of chapter ten of John that all that ever came before him were thieves and robbers. Thieves and robbers! These days, it is all about who you trust. The door has a lock, and you have the key to unlocking it. He is knocking at the door every day. Will you open the door? The door is your relationship with God. Your communication with the almighty God. Is it open or closed? Only you yourself can answer that question. But to know God you must open the door. There are two doors that the priest goes through to the mercy seat and between the two cherubim is where God communes with the priest, [see Exodus 25:22]. This is the same place where God spoke to Moses in the tabernacle in Numbers 7:89. God desires a place to commune with His people.

Mercy Seat
Mercy Seat

The open door speaks to not only communication, but relationship. One must communicate in order to have a relationship. For many, God is distant because they do not know how to communicate to the Almighty one. Yet, Jesus said, “I will come into him and sup with him.” We must know the importance of the door that Jesus claims to be. What does it mean to hear his voice and have him [sup with us]. We can read about Jesus and the Father’s relationship in the Bible. But we must first go back to the day of atonement where the priest had to make sacrifices not only for himself but for the people as well for all their sins. This sacrifice opens the door for communications with God. But God did not take pleasure in these sacrifices for sin [see Hebrews 10:6]. He made a new covenant where only one sacrifice for sins was made forever, [see Hebrews 10:12]. It is the offering of the body of Jesus Christ who become the final and only sacrifice for sins. In this final sacrifice was God pleased. That is why Jesus is the shepherd because He laid down his own life for the sheep [see John 10:11].

I am the door; by me if any man enters in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”

John 10:9

Jesus is the door to which we can enter into the Holy place where the mercy set is. We can enter in by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way, [see Hebrew 10-19-22]. When we enter the door of Jesus, we enter into the mercy seat of God. Jesus is the blood sacrifice for our sins, and therefore, we are able to commune with God. We can come boldly to the throne of grace because of Jesus. That is why we can draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith. Because we have had our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience through faith in Jesus Christ. Let us hold fast our profession of faith. Let us not waver in our faith in Christ Jesus. We enter in by faith and that is believing and receiving what God has revealed to us in the Scriptures. Do we trust in God and in Jesus Christ whom God sent? That is a question that each of us must answer for ourselves. Each person must answer the question if they believe in that “God so loved the world that He gave us His only son in that whosoever believeth in him should not perish but have everlasting life,” [see John 3:16]. One cannot come to the God any other way but through Jesus Christ who is the propitiation for our sins.

I say unto you, He that entered not by the door into the sheepfold, but climbed up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber.”

John 10:1

There is that thief and robber again. There is only one way to come to God, and that is through Jesus Christ. Jesus is the door to eternal life. All other methods are considered as a thief or robbers of your soul and life. Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life; no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” [John 14:6]. We have a heavenly Father who is merciful.

I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their iniquities will I remember no more.”

Hebrew 8:12

The heavenly Father will be merciful to us, and He will not remember your sins anymore. He will not remember your sins. He sees you through the eyes of Jesus. Jesus and the Father had a personal relationship with each other. Jesus knows the Father and that speaks to an intimate relationship. Jesus said, “as the Father knoweth me, even so know I the Father; and I lay down my life for the sheep,” [see John 10:15]. Take a look at the very next verse of John chapter ten. In verse 16, Jesus speaks about the other sheep he has, and those other sheep hear his voice. The other sheep are those who are not of the Jewish fold. These are the Gentiles who were aliens from the commonwealth of Israel having no hope and without God in the world, but now are a part of the commonwealth through the blood of Christ, [see Ephesians 2:12-13]. How exciting is that? Jesus is our peace who hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us. We are all one in Christ and the Father receives us because of Christ sacrifice. Our faith and confession are a testimony to God and to others.

Our confession of faith is very important because it speaks to where we stand. We are either in the fold of the shepherd or we stand outside of the gate/door. Jesus tells us to fear not because we are more valuable than the all the sparrows. If we confess Christ before men, then Christ will confess us before the Father who is in heaven, [see Matthew 10:32]. But look at verse 33 of Mathew chapter ten, for it states that if we deny Christ, He will deny us before the Father in heaven. We must remember that He is always faithful, but mere man stumbles in his own belief. We must repent in order to revive our soul and have the door open to the pastures again whereby we may communicate. At the end of this age the church who is in revival are those who hear his voice and God knows of their works, for he has set before them an open door and no man can shut the door that He opens. God opens the door unto those who have kept His word and who have not denied His name [see Revelation 3:8]. Those who are His know that of themselves they are nothing, but with God they have become strong. They know their position in Christ and all things become possible because of their faith.

You must know the father and the son. Jesus said, “I and the Father are one.” Are you one with Christ? If you are one with Christ, then you are His followers and listen to His voice. This means you get acquainted with him and his ways. You read his will and testament to become familiar with his way. The Holy Spirit will teach us and guide us into its meaning [see John 14:26]. This means whatever you do, you do as unto the Lord and not unto yourselves. This means that we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works and not evil, [see Ephesians 2:10]. Jesus himself said he could do nothing of himself, but what he sees the Father do, He does. He had an intimate relationship with the Father and the Father revealed to Jesus what he should do. Let him teach you what you should do. Read his word daily and pray for understanding. Jesus exclaims that if you know him, you know the Father. This is such an amazing statement, and we many just gloss over it without giving it careful thought.

When you are reading any book, do you not look at the “characters” of the book? To know the characters is to know something about them. Thus, the Bible explains the character of God in who he is and what he has done. If you believe in God, you must also believe in Jesus Christ. If you do not, then how can He prepare a place for you in heaven. Remember that Jesus is the door, the way, the truth, and the life.

How much more shall your heavenly Father give you the Holy Spirit

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Darkness, Light

Put on the Armor of Light

The night is far spent, the day is at hand; let us, therefore, cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light.”

Romans 13:12

Oh! The night is far spent, meaning that we may have spent too much time working for ourselves and doing for ourselves. We may have become farsighted in that we only look at things from a distance instead of up close and personal. Sometimes things that are seen up close may be too personal to deal with. We would rather avoid them altogether. Putting on the armor of light is talking about personal relationships with each other and God. Those of us born in the Baby Boomer Generations were concerned about relationships. The value of spending time with family and friends. I made it my mission as a teen to find out the true meaning of what love is. The Baby Boomers brought the symbol for love and peace. Anti-war walks against the war in Vietnam and to live in peace by loving one another was the theme of the day. LSD was the “tune in, turn off and drop out,” drug along with marijuana smoking. Some of us thought it was the end of the world.

Does this sound familiar? If you could only have seen what I have seen after a party at a home in 1974 in Southern California where everyone was dropped out on the floor and lying down into a stupor. Talk about zombie land. There was no light shining in this place of darkness. The Baby Boomers may have inherited the American Dream, but at what cost? Married couples worked very hard to achieve that dream of owning a home. Those who have settled down knew the value of love and friendship within the home and wanted the next generation to understand that value. The world was growing at a fast pace where education and technologies were the key to getting ahead and to have more time for family and friends. I wondered what happened to having more time for family and friends. Today, it is Twitter and Facebook that has become the new method of socializing. Have we become far sighted in our own relationship instead of up close and personal? The divide between each other seems to be the distance between the diamonds of the baseball field. Will we ever reach home plate? Why the division? Is it not self-gratification? Yes, self-gratification has taken over in our actions. When the self is not gratified, it screams out for attention.

Not everyone is looking at the full picture. How did we get to the place we now sit in? Many are living in the moment and denying everything else. The circumstances of Covid-19, the lack of baby formula, the logistic issues, the change in weather patterns, the breakout of war, the shootings, the burglaries, and the crystal meth problem has society screaming out for attention? We see it at a distance until it is up close and personal. Some people are demanding accountability while others are ignoring it altogether. Who is held accountable? It is so easy to point the finger. The apostle Paul states to “make no provision for the flesh, to fulfill its lusts,” in Romans 13:14. The principal key in any relationship is responsibility, trust, and respect.

He that is weak in the faith receive ye, but not to doubtful disputations.”

Romans 14:1

Faithful servants of God are responsible to make sure that love works “no ill” against its neighbor or to those within the body of Christ. Let’s step back and look at the word darkness. When a room is dark, one cannot see what is in the room, or what danger there is in the room. Without the light to fill the room, one cannot see their steps. If you stand in darkness, how far can you see? Does not the darkness make everything obscure? Is it not the darkness that makes things unclear, concealed, and hidden? The Hebrew word for darkness is “chashak.” It means to be or grow dark. The word “chashak also speaks to the sanctuary of God in being a place of refuge, but it can also take on the meaning of being separated and cut off from God. The darkness is to consume and destroy without the covering or atonement of God. Who is walking around seeking someone whom he may devour? Is it not the adversary the devil? [ see 1 Peter 5:8]. What about consuming one another?

But if ye bite and devour one another, take heed that ye be not consumed one of another.”

Galatians 5:15

Paul is warning the church to not bite and devour one another to the point of consuming or filling one’s mind and attention to arguing and accusing one another. We all will be judged by God. Remember that anyone who is troubling you shall bear his own judgment, [see Galatians 5:10]. We must step back in order to not be consumed by the enmity of an individual. We must stay under the shelter of God. Under His protection and not to follow those who follow after the flesh and its desires. Remember the carnal mind is enmity against God, for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed, can it be, [see Romans 8:7]. Those who are walking in the flesh and who are carnal have lost their blessings or favor in God. We must repent from living in the flesh and come back to God to live in the Spirit where love, joy, and peace reside and not arguing, anger, and bitterness.

To put on the armor of light is to put on the Lord Jesus Christ and make no provision for the flesh to fulfill its lusts, [Romans 13:14]. Whatever I do in life is for the Lord and not for myself. That I cannot achieve within myself, my own righteousness since righteousness is a gift from God, and we all were bought with a price. That price was paid through the blood of Jesus Christ. God sent his son that the world might be saved. This is the love of God for us in that He gave us His only Son. This is the reason why we put on the armor of light, for that light is the light of the Lord Jesus Christ. This is the reason why Paul tells us to follow after the things, which make for peace, and things with which one may edify another, [see Romans 14:19]. We are to present our bodies as a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is our reasonable service, [see Romans 12:1]. This is done on a daily basis for each day belongs to the Lord.

If we are to live unto the lord each day, then we must cast off the works of darkness and put on the armor of light that will guide our steps in the path of righteousness and not into the path of darkness. Listen to the red-letter words in Revelation chapter 3.

As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten; be zealous, therefore, and repent.”

Revelation 3:19

The above quote was said to the church at Laodicea who is in a state of apostasy. They are denying the truth and changing doctrine to meet their own personal belief. If you are not in conviction even as a Christian in your everyday walk with God, then something is wrong with your communion with God. We must continue to grow into the image of Christ, and this only comes as we learn about God’s ways and receive instruction into the word [the bible] that brings conviction into our heart. If you have stopped reading his word, you have no conviction and you have no instruction into the heart of God. Part of the armor of light is the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, [see Ephesians 6:17]. How can you overcome the evil if you do not know how to stand in faith and put on the armor of light. If you are not chastened by the Lord, how can you grow into the image of Christ. Therefore, be zealous and repent while there is still time. Repent is to change your mind in the way you walk to the way of God. If you have fallen from the grace of God, get back under it by repenting from your ways to that of God’s way.

Let us come boldly unto the throne of grace where we may obtain mercy. If you have any kind of need, any unbelief in your heart, or a weakness, take it to the Lord in prayer. It is only Christ that can reconcile us back to God. It is Christ that has given us life. It is Christ who is the author and finisher of our faith. It is Christ who will keep us in perfect love. May we put on the “Armor of Light” each day and walk in love until He comes.

Who is knocking at the door?

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Blessings in Christ, Walk

Have you lost your Blessings?

Where is then, the blessedness you spoke of? For I bear you witness that, if it had been possible, you would have plucked out your own eyes, and have given them to me.”

Galatians 4:15

If you do not have eyes, then you are blind. Have you lost your blessings that you first had when you believed in Jesus Christ? The apostle Paul is asking this question to the Galatians who have lost their liberty in Christ. The question of how they were saved was put to those churches in Galatia. Were they not saved through the grace of God in Christ Jesus? Was it not by the revelation of Jesus Christ? Many Christians have gone back into legalistic rituals that have chained themselves under the law. These laws are legalistic rituals that they perform in order to be righteous or justified. They no longer have their liberty that they had under Christ. It is as if they could not or did not have faith anymore to continue their walk in Christ. Have we forgotten the words of Paul who stated, “whatever is not of faith is sin,” [Romans14:23]. Have we lost the free and unmerited favor of God? Maybe, for if we are not living under the grace of God through his son Jesus Christ, then what are we living under? How are we to live under the love of God if we serve men under the law through the flesh.

Everyone is responsible for their own actions, however, the apostle Paul states that “no man should put a stumbling block or an occasion to fall in his brother’s way,” [see Romans 14:13]. We must remember that “love does not work any ill towards a neighbor; and is therefore the fulfillment of the law,” [see Romans 13:10]. There is only one person who fulfilled the law and that is Jesus Christ. If you do not have love, get down on your knees and pray to God in regard to your lack of love for that individual. Why do we not have love for so and so. Why have we become bitter towards that person. God help us if our love has grown cold. We must receive back that gift of love that God has for all of us through his son Jesus Christ. We must ask him to allow the fruit of the spirit of love to reign again with in our heart of flesh. We must cast off the works of darkness and put on the armor of light that is in Christ Jesus. Have you put on the armor of light? Each of us struggle with our own weaknesses of the flesh, and not loving someone is one of the weaknesses of the flesh. If our faith is weak, it could be that our love is also weak.

Rituals within the church are good up to a point, and that point is servanthood. Is our servanthood towards men or God? That is a question that each of us should be asking ourselves. Servanthood means a person who performs duties for others like an employed person. A servant of Christ is one who serves God by being a follower of Christ and a person who sets aside their own selfishness to serve others. It is Christ’s love for them that has enabled them to be able to love others. Christ’s love is perfected within the individual’s heart. That love has freed them from the bondage of sin. The works of the flesh is what puts one in bondage of sin like lying, jealousy, envying, hatred, strive, and more, [see Galatians 5:19-21]. The opposite is the fruit of the Spirit, which is love, joy, peace and self-control etc., [see Galatians 5:22-23]. If your work is to achieve a status within the Chruch then this is not of the fruit of the Spirit. If your work is to achieve righteousness within the Church, then this is not of the fruit of the Spirit.

The only way we can achieve the favor of God is when we come as a child and confess our sins before God and repent from living a life in the flesh. It is the Spirit of God that frees us from the spirit of the flesh. We are to mind the things of the Spirit and not the flesh since whatever is of the flesh brings death. Those living in the flesh are carnally minded and Paul comments “to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace,” [Romans 8:6]. We should all desire to have life and peace. We must have Faith that the Spirit of God will change us into the image of Christ. We must be led by the Spirit, and it is that Spirit of Christ who will raise our mortal bodies if we have His Spirit living within us. This is done by faith in Christ Jesus who bore our sins on the cross. Redemption is by blood and by the power of God, and this is done through Jesus Christ. That is why Paul stated that “there is, therefore, now no condemnation to them who are in Christ Jesus, [Romans 8:1]. Are you in Christ Jesus?

For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.”

Romans 8:2

Has the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus set you free from the law of sin and death? Test yourselves to see if this is true or false. We have read that it is love for one another that fulfills the law. Everyone must bear his own burden and prove his own work whether it is of God or of their own works. Our sanctification is done through the Holy Spirit and not in the law. The law points to our weaknesses that proves we need to be saved. This is for many, a fathomless concept to understand, and for many it is still a mystery. We cannot understand it in the flesh unless the revelation of the mystery comes to us through the Holy Spirit. That is why Paul tells us to walk in the Spirit.

This I say then, walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.”

Galatians 5:16

It is the Holy Spirit that gives us the victory over the law of the flesh. We read how the flesh is contrary to the Spirit in Galatians chapter 5 verse 17. It is only by being led in the Spirit that we will not be under the law. Here comes a revelation that is not always clear to our natural mind let alone a carnal mind.

For we know that the law is spiritual; but I am carnal, sold under sin.”

Romans 7:14

Since the law of God is spiritual in that we cannot obey it due to our human status through Adam’s sins, we were sold under sin. However, God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth, [see John 4:24]. The law is spiritual, yet we are carnal sold under sin. We must be born into the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus. We must have the Spirit of Christ living inside us as Paul stated in Romans chapter 8, verse 9. This Spirit gives us life and not death. This Spirit has raised up Jesus Christ from the dead and that Spirit now dwells in every believer who believes that Jesus died for their sins. Quicken thou my body by thy Spirit, Oh God! He will do it. God will quicken our mortal bodies by his Spirit. We will be healed in the name of Jesus and the Spirit will do the work. We must trust in God and believe. Some of us will exclaim what is written in Psalms 119.

Make me to understand the way of thy precepts; so, shall I talk of thy wondrous works. Give me understanding, and I shall keep thy law; yea I shall observe it with my whole heart. Make me to go in the path of thy commandments; for therein do I delight. Incline my heart unto thy testimonies, and not to covetousness. Turn away mine eyes from beholding vanity and revive thou me in thy way.”

Psalms 119:27,34-37

Let this Psalms be your prayer for every new day, and He will not only revive you but also quicken your mortal bodies. Repent and be healed in the name of Jesus. Those who trust in the Lord will be blessed. Remember your inheritance is in the Lord. “For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God, [Romans 8″14]. We have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear but we have received the Spirit of adoption whereby we cry out to Father God. It is Christ who has redeemed us from the curse of the law, [see Galatians 3:13]. Stand fast in the liberty you have in Christ and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage, [Galatians 5:1]. Come back into the fold of Christ who has redeemed you from the curse of sin that is under the law. Christ is the fulfillment of the law. You cannot establish your own righteousness. Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes. Let us keep our faith in Christ alone so that we all may be heirs according to the promise of God. Let us receive our blessings and favor in God and continue to always walk in His Spirit.

Let us put on the armor of light and walk in it.

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Servant

Well Done Faithful Servant

Well done, thou good and faithful servant; thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things. Enter thou into the joy of thy Lord.”

Matthew 25:21

To hear the words of our Lord, “Well done, thou good and faithful servant,” when our end has come on the earth would be a great joy. May this be the words we all hear when our time has come to an end. Well done, thou good and faithful servant, I pray is what Queen Elizabeth hears as she enters into heaven. In the world today, we would rather fight our way to the top of some kind of glory or status symbol, but for Queen Elizabeth it was handed down the throne of rulership. In 1952 Queen Elizabeth was not afraid to ask for prayer before her coronation. This was quoted in the written obituary of Christianity Today online news . . .

Queen Elizabeth II

“I want to ask you all, whatever your religion may be, to pray for me on that day,” she said, “to pray that God may give me wisdom and strength to carry out the solemn promises I shall be making, and that I may faithfully serve Him and you, all the days of my life.”

Died: Queen Elizabeth II, British Monarch Who Put Her Trus…… | News & Reporting | Christianity Today

As we all mourn the loss of Queen Elizabeth, let us remember that every human being will give an account of their “talents,” along with every ruler around the world. Stewardship is very important to our Lord in how we use what God has given us. We are given a special talent to the work of our hands to which the Lord blesses. We must remember that “out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks,” [see Matthew 12:34]. This bears much thought and meditation to give heed to what the written word states.

A good man out of the good treasure of the heart bringeth forth good things: and an evil man out of the evil treasure bringeth forth evil things.  But I say unto you, that every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment. 

Matthew 12:35-36

It is the heart that determines the path of men either for good or bad. Can we say along with the Queen, “I know just how much I rely on my own faith to guide me through the good times and the bad.” How much have you relied on your own faith in Christ Jesus? Our identity is at stake along with a sense of belonging for every individual living in the world. Let us consider where we each stand on this day. It is a time to evaluate our own heart before the Lord God. As the Queen has said that our responsibilities go way beyond ourselves. Any selfish desires are put aside for the good of all. We must all be faithful to what we were called to do in this world. We must all ask God through the Holy Spirit to guide us in the path we should take. Whatever we do, we do it for the glory of God.

What will our Christian conduct be during the time we now live in? We are to be soberminded and watch as we pray not only for ourselves but for our brothers and sisters and those who rule over us. We should have a heartfelt love for each other and be hospitable. We find these words in 1st. Peter chapter four.

But the end of all things is at hand; be ye, therefore, soberminded, and watch unto prayer. And above all things have fervent love among yourselves; for love shall cover the multitude of sins. Use hospitality one to another without grudging. As every man hath received the gift, even so minister the same one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.”

1 Peter 4:7-10

We are to be good stewards of the manifold grace of God. Let us repent if there is anything that is with-holding us from being good stewards. Remember that God resisted the proud but gives grace to the humble. These past years has seen many challenges in all areas of our life. It is time to take stock of ourselves and to consider where our identity and the sense of belonging lies in. Is it in Christ Jesus or is it in something else. Only you yourself can answer this question. Our faith is in Christ Jesus who is the author and the finisher of our faith [see Hebrews 12:2]. Let us stand on a sure foundation where Jesus Christ is the chief cornerstone [see Ephesians 2:20]. Let us then grow into a holy temple in the Lord where we are built up into a habitation of God through the Spirit [see Ephesians 2:20-22]. We belong to God and our inheritance is in God alone. This is our identity and sense of belonging.

As we humble ourselves under the mighty hand of God, let us cast all our cares upon Him who cares for us. Let us be sober, for the devil, like a roaring lion is walking about seeking someone to devour. Let us stand fast in our faith knowing that there are brothers and sisters in the world who are also under afflictions, pain and distress [ see 1 Peter 5:7-9]. We are to have patience like Job who suffered many things and is said in verse 22 of Job chapter one, “In all this Job sinned not, nor charged God with folly.” The Lord was merciful with Job, and He is merciful to all those who belong to him. Even though we may suffer for a while, our God is perfecting, establishing, strengthening and settling us in our vocation and life here upon the earth until our time has ended.

Will we follow Christ’s example like Queen Elizabeth who exclaimed in 2016 Christmas Broadcast, “billions of people now follow his teaching and find in him the guiding light for their lives.  I am one of them because Christ’s example helps me see the value of doing small things with great love, whoever does them and whatever they themselves believe.” We can learn from the words of the queen as well as from the word of the apostle Paul who tells us to fight the good fight of faith, and lay hold of eternal life, but not before he stated to flee from the temptation of coveting and money.

But thou, O man of God, flee these things, and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, and meekness.”

1 Timothy 6:11

Can we follow after these things as stated above? Can we flee from the temptation of coveting and money. God has surely blessed Queen Elizabeth but remember no one can walk in her shoes. She took her vows seriously and worked hard through the years and has endured many hardships. She has encouraged many to carry on, for each day is a new day. Each day we are given opportunities to do good unto others. What value do you have in doing small things with great love? Let us follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience and meekness and continue to do small things with great love. I thank God for Queen Elizabeth’s service to her people. Let us continue to pray for the Royal family and other leaders throughout the world. May God bless us all richly in the name of Jesus, Amen.

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Heart, Inheritance

I Am Their Inheritance

And it shall be unto them for an inheritance; I am their inheritance, and ye shall give them no possession in Israel; I am their possession.”

Ezekiel 44:28

What inheritance will you have? For some it may be a strong desire to have in so much that some go out of their way so to see to it that they receive what they believe is owed them. The uncontrolled longing to get gain is a driving force for many.

An inheritance may be gotten hastily at the beginning: but the end thereof shall not be blessed.”

Proverbs 20:21

What should be our attitudes be towards an inheritance? When it comes to money it always brings speculation and everyone is judged as to their individual actions towards the one who has a will. Many families are broken up because of a will of a testator. Everyone in the family believes that they have a right to what is left of an estate by the testator. We forget to do the right thing in everything we do here on the earth. When we look at the house of Israel the main grievance that the Lord God had against them was harlotry along with idolatry. The house of Israel was unprincipled and immoral in their actions towards the house of the Lord. They have abused the sanctuary of the Lord and in Ezekiel’s vision in chapter 44, God is setting things in order and only the priests from the Levites are allowed to stand before the Lord. The Levite priests are given instruction to teach the people the difference between what is holy and what is common, to discern between what is clean and unclean [see Ezekiel 44:23].

To be able to minister in the inner court of the sanctuary, one must offer his sin offering. After the cleansing and sin offering, this is when an inheritance is set up where God himself shall be their inheritance and He is also their possession. What does it mean to have an inheritance. Is it not an irrevocable gift of God? This takes some thought and meditation to think it through in its meaning.

Ye are bought with a price; be not ye the servants of men.”

1 Corinthians 7:23

Who has bought you with a price? Is it not Jesus Christ who died as a sin offering in order that we may all stand before God in the inner court. Are we not to consider the Apostle and High Priest of our profession, Christ Jesus, [see Hebrews 3:1]. The answer is yes. A Christian after hearing the gospel of Jesus and believing in the truth of Jesus is sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise and this is the down payment of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, [see Ephesians 1:11-14]. We have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things to the glory of God. That is why we are not the servants of men, but of Christ instead.

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead to an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that faded not away, reserved in heaven for you, who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.”

1 Peter 1:3-5

God has provided an incorruptible inheritance for the children of God. This inheritance will not fade away and it is reserved for us in heaven. We are kept by the power of God through our faith in Christ Jesus. No one can take this inheritance away from us. Take note that a price was paid in order that an inheritance could be made. Let us not abuse the privilege that God has given us. An inheritance that is gotten hastily by a person is not innocent because he has fallen into temptation and a snare because of his own lust. Coveting brings destruction to all men even in the house of Israel. We should think twice about our earthly inheritance as to not abuse the written will of a testator as well as the Lord God.

A good man leaveth an inheritance to his children’s children: and the wealth of the sinner is laid up for the just.”

Proverbs 13:22

Have you ever wondered about why in Proverbs it states that a good man leaves an inheritance to his children’s children and not his children? Why should we leave an inheritance unto the next generation? Does this not take into account the future generations rather than the current generation which has already benefited by his parents love and support. Lest we forget that “children are a heritage from the Lord; and the fruit of the womb is his reward,” [Psalms 127:3]. God knows the heart of man and in what state his heart is. I have witnessed and experienced the war one can wage in getting more than their fair share of a will. I was left standing alone many times as a young child, and as a teen by my own mother. I was born out of wedlock. Almost given up for adoption and used as a slave rather than a child/mother relationship. My mother disobeyed her parents and went her own way. It was my grandparents who kept me in mind in their will. And I am reminded that a good man leaves an inheritance to his children’s children. I received a portion of the will but received a letter from a lawyer that my mother was contesting the will. I received a copy of the will and showed it to a cousin. My cousin could not believe or understand why the will was being contested but told me that I was entitled to what the written will had stated.

At that time, I was not sure what the real issue was in regard to the will except for the fact that my mother wanted more. It was not the fact that she needed it, it was the fact that she desired more. I gave her what she wanted knowing that God is my inheritance. I knew that my grandparents were good and trusted in God. The labor of their hands God did bless. I have not spoken to my mother in over 40 years. She is estranged from me and has been since my youth. God has provided for my needs when I did not have a penny to my name, and this was before the death of my grandparents to whom I have never seen. The night is far spent, the day is at hand; let us, therefore, cast off the works of darkness and let us put on the armor of light,” [Romans 13:12]. Our attitudes must change to the mind of Christ. We must know what is clean and unclean. We must put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfill its lusts, [Romans 13:14]. We must not walk in strive and envying, we must walk honestly before all men. We live unto the Lord, and we die unto the Lord, for we are the Lord’s.

For to this end Christ both died, and rose, and revived, that he might be Lord both of the dead and living.”

Romans 14:9

Remember we will all stand before the judgment seat of Christ. “The kingdom of God is not food and drink, but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit,” Romans 14:17. Lord help us to follow after the things which make for peace. Let us give thanks unto the Lord who is our inheritance and has provided a place for us in heaven. Keep us from all forms of evil and help us to discern what is clean and unclean. In Jesus name, amen.

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Labor

Labor not to be Rich. . .

Labor not to be rich; cease from thine own wisdom.”

Proverbs 23:4

Who will heed this warning? Labor not to be rich that you become so righteous and think that your wisdom has gained you this position. Do not trust in what you have. Remember that you cannot take it with you when you die. Know that whatever you do in this life, it is God who gives the increase. Why the warning, and what does it mean?

Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not high-minded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy.”

1 Timothy 6:17

It is God who gives us all things to enjoy. Why does Paul state to Timothy a son of a Greek Gentile father not to trust in uncertain riches? These are warnings that Paul gave to those in ministries, but even the lay person can learn from the warnings that Paul gave to Timothy. Paul states that it is enough to just have food and raiment [see 1 Timothy 6:8]. Just food and clothing seem so little. Why? It is what your mind is focused upon. Having to strive to get money takes your eyes of off God. That is why the love of money is the root of all evil. Listen to what Paul said in 1 Timothy 6:10.

For the love of money is the root of all evil, which, while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.

1 Timothy 6:10

The root of all evil begins with coveting which is a strong desire to have something or obtain something that you do not have at that moment. It is coveting that many have misjudged themselves to do wrong in order to gain something. That is why we have laws in place to direct our behavior. Everything has its place in society in order that we may live in peace. A Christian’s behavior is to become more like Christ. A Christian prays that he may live a godly life. Paul comments that “godliness with contentment is great gain,” [see 1 Timothy 6:6]. A Christian is thankful to God for what he has provided. Have you ever considered the views regarding money? Have you read about the self-made millionaire Steve Siebold? Let’s look at a couple of statements what he found in researching out the wealthy. Think carefully! Is there wisdom in these statements?

Rich people believe money is liberating …while the average person believes money is controlling.

Are rich people liberated from having money? It is what you believe, but it may not always play out to be the truth in what you believe. They may believe that they have more freedom; however, with more money there is more responsibility that one does not take into consideration. Despite the fact that they may have the freedom to spend on what they desire, it is the individual’s attitude towards money that is the key. Why? Because many times it is money that will control you instead of the other way around. That is why Jesus said that it is hard for a rich man to enter the Kingdom of Heaven, for they are not able to let go of what they have. In otherwards, money has a great hold in their life to where they cannot separate themselves from the money that they have. Many times, money becomes a power play for an ideal status of an individual rather than an individual living in moderation and being content with what they have. We really need to change our behavior and attitudes towards money. That way it will be liberating to both the rich and the average person.

Rich people believe in working for fulfillment …while the average person believes in working for money.

Here again it is a matter of how you view money in general. Everyone knows that one has to have a job in order to make money. It all depends upon your state of mind. Evaluation of individual talents and gifts is what can motivate you to work. But if you are in the wrong job, it will not fulfill your desires no matter what amount of money you receive. You will always be dissatisfied. What you love to do becomes your passion and that passion should fulfill the desires of your heart. Work should be an adventure or journey rather than just something you just have to do to make ends meet. Focusing on money brings stress and anxiety. God wants you to use your hands to some kind of work that will not only bless you but others as well. Ask God to reveal the work you should be doing. The reason why you should have money is not only for your own personal needs but for the needs of others. The rich know that creative thinking is the highest paid skill in the world, so any kind of training you have is meant for not only for your good but for the good of others. Ask God to help you find solutions to difficult problems and to guide you into the right passions for the work you do. He will supply you with the answers and the right position in a job where you are fulfilled.

We are to remember the things that bring blessings. One of them is the work of your hands. God desires is to bless the work of your hand.

The Lord shall open unto thee his good treasure, the heaven to give the rain unto thy land in its season, and to bless all the work of thine hand; and thou shalt lend unto many nations, and thou shalt not borrow.”

Deuteronomy 28:12

Lending to many nations such as giving to the poor are what God desires. The church is meant to teach people to distribute to the needs of others. The early churches did just that. They gave to each other when there was a need and to further the Gospel of Christ.

“He that hath pity upon the poor lendeth unto the LORD; and that which he hath given will he pay him again.”

Proverbs 19:17

When I read how giving to the poor is lending to the Lord, it amazed me and the fact that He will pay him again was something I did not expect. Yet, I have seen the benefits in my own life where my needs were supplied, and debts were paid off when I gave to the poor. God will always supply your need when you place your faith in him and not on something else like money. It is God who gives the increase for the work of our hands, and we should thank him every day for what he has given us in material wealth that we may continue to give to others who have need of certain things. The early church was taught to give and distribute, but we rarely witness this today. Some of us have to be shamed into giving.

If ever we need wisdom is now . . . we need the wisdom that God can provide, and the way to find it is asking. In James chapter 1 verse 5, it states that God will give it when we ask for it. The only condition is to ask in faith [see James 1:6]. It is the wise that will inherit glory, but shame shall be the promotion of fools [Proverbs 3:35]. In the scriptures there is much to meditate upon when reading. Within its pages is the truth and wisdom for each of us to take hold of. Take time to read and heed it, for it is your life.

Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore, get wisdom; and with all thy getting, get understanding.”

Proverbs 4:7

Lord God, help us to get wisdom and most of all help us to get understanding. Let us learn what the will of God is in all things. Guide our thoughts to the truth about money that we may have the right attitude towards it and that we may be willing to give to others who are in need. Help us to have an attitude towards giving and distributing to others. May it become a way of life. Bless those who give and have wisdom to share and teach others. In Jesus Name, Amen.

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