What child was this? He was the son of God who came out of the tomb, the risen Christ, God in the flesh the only Savior for all mankind. Some people will be the handyman for the devil to work against this truth. Their flesh will blind them to who Jesus is. The Christ story is going to fully be played out, much of it has whether people want to give it recognition or not.
Some people are being set up by Satan to miss its entire meaning while others are catching on and believe it is the eternal message. Don’t allow yourself to be fooled by the ordinariness of Christmas or Easter. Jesus is not where many try to place Him. Jesus is here. The Spirit of the Lord is as near as ever. He is here to help us. Jesus made a way for us and it is before us to help us make it through life all the way to eternity.
Never allow yourself to buy into the commercial side of Christmas or Easter. Buy in to the reality and speak up for its truth. Let people see that truth in you during the whole year, but especially at this time of the year.
Mark chapter 16:19-20; “So then, after the Lord had spoken to them, He was received up into Heaven and sat down at the right hand of God. And they went out and preached everywhere, the Lord working with them confirming the Word through the accompanying signs. Amen.” Jesus told us, gave us instructions for what we are to be doing with our lives.
Matthew 28:19-20; “And Jesus came and spoke to them saying, ‘All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age’.” Amen.
There was once a man that grew up in poverty. His family was extremely poor. He had little to no education. Therefore, he never learned to read. Despite this fact, with determination, this man made something of his life. He rose above his poverty to become somewhat successful in life.
At age 62, he retired from his business and still couldn’t read. The man had become a devout Christian and desired to read the Bible, which he had but had never done so clearly. He went to a place that helped teach people to read, but for some reason it didn’t do him much good.
One night the man looked at his Bible and took it to bed with him. He lay there and pleaded with God to help him. Finally, he laid his Bible on his chest and made this statement in prayer to the Lord, “You’ve helped me to do something with my life, yet I have not been able to read Your word with little understanding. I must know it or I ask that you let me die and leave this earth for I no longer wish to remain here unless I can, for myself, read Your words to me so I can understand them for myself.
The next morning, he awoke. The Bible was still open on his chest. He got up and went into another room, sat down in a chair, re-opened his Bible and read the words perfectly.
This story is true and that same God does impossible things like this, big or small. Every day to those who trust Him. He is the only God and you can trust Him.
Some of you may have heard the story of Abraham or maybe heard of Sodom and Gomorrah, you see Lot got just as close to sin as he could. Remember Lot went with Abraham. Abraham didn’t ask Lot to go. Lot causes Abraham a bunch of trouble because of his decisions and his desires. And yet when Lot and his family got captured by their enemies, Abraham came and rescued Lot.
Abraham knew what he needed and what God had to offer was real. Lot still struggled with self too much and it’s evident in how Lot still tried to live just as close to Sodom as he could.
Abraham is later visited by 3 men or probably angels sent by God to destroy Sodom and Gomorrah. They were sent to deliver the message of God’s promise to Abraham. Abraham pleads for the city if there were fifty righteous people all the way down to ten and yet there was not even ten in the city and even other cities around them were destroyed.
Genesis 19:15-16: “When the morning dawned, the angels urged Lot to hurry, saying, ‘Arise, take your wife and your two daughters who are here, lest you be consumed in the punishment of the city’.
When you look back, it looked like Abraham had given away the choice land, the best he could have had. But in the end, Abraham had discovered the key to insight of the real blessings of God. Lot had all kinds of problems of his own making, because he chose to live so near sinfulness too much.
Does this not also happen to Christians who try to live too close to sin today, as well?
God’s ears are not selective. They hear the prayers of a child just as quickly as pastor. What God listens for is sincere prayers. God always answers prayers, you can’t give up because God always knows how to, when to, and why to answer your request.
The wisest man in the world is the man that knows how to pray and trust God. God expects His people to communicate with Him and that is by the means of prayer. It will not only change your life but the lives of others even more. It is really impossible to be anything as a Christian, to have any effectiveness, unless we become ones that pray. There will never be a more effective church than the church that knows how to pray. Prayer will change this town and many a lost sinner will find their way to an altar because someone was praying for them. Families can be saved, lives snatched from the hand of Satan, because prayer has a more powerful grip than does the devil’s fingers.
How many are here today because somebody valued your soul enough to pray for you? Prayer is, and will always be, the quickest and most useful tool anyone can choose. Prayer is vital in reaching toward God because prayer easily recognizes God.
Why has the Lord not returned yet? I believe it is because the house is not ready. What is it going to take to get it that way? I’ve struggled with those thoughts because I wonder if the nation has to totally collapse by economics or other things to set it up to succeed.
There are some spiritual gold nuggets found in the scriptures that I believe accurately describes the church. I think in its fullness, it is the main source that God would have the church do as an assignment from heaven. The more I studied on these scriptures the more my spiritual eye opened to what the church very possibly should be about the most and yet is neglected the most.
Now many have read these scriptures, many pulpits have preached these scriptures, but have many possibly forgotten their meaning? When Jesus saw that people had come in and changed the purpose for the church, he had a holy anger against what the people had done and He dealt with it. This may be the only time we see the rougher side of Jesus with a bunch of people.
Are many churches missing the very core requirement for success? Why is this story told in all four of the gospels and in similar and yet different ways relating to the surroundings of ministry of the church? Where do you find in the four gospels the same story line, the same account in each story and events are mentioned once, some twice, few 3 times but this account 4 times?
Why was this particular story so important that Jesus told it in all four of the gospels with different surroundings yet the same main focus? “My house shall be only a house of prayer.” Is that what Jesus is saying?
Show me anywhere else in the scripture where Jesus himself raised a weapon up and used it to deal with people. Show me anywhere when the Son of God got angry to the point that He actually made an instrument Himself and used it on the people. This has to be important if Jesus who loved us so much to die for us would in holy anger defend the sacredness of His church to be Holy and be a House of Prayer. God, I believe, wants His church to return to Him as a House of Prayer. Many, I am concerned, have changed its original purpose and taken it in many directions. And the result is that some churches have lost their way in its true definition and until it returns to prayer it is going to have little effect.
God has all the supplies of what you have need of in the days ahead and it doesn’t matter the day or the hour. And God reminds all that nothing is too hard for our Lord as it says in Genesis 18:4. Yes absolutely nothing is impossible for God to do and so it is very wise to follow His ways. Therefore, God always has the right schedule for your day. Let Him be your teacher, your counselor, and He will always be your friend.
You will find God’s word is rich if you will feed your heart with it. There is more than enough for you and to all that have needs. And in this life your best ally with the Lord Jesus is His Holy Spirit who helps you to understand what you can’t on your own. You need the Holy Spirit to lead you every day to point you down the path that God has provided and set His angels in charge over. You see the Holy Spirit of the living God wants to live in you, and He will grant you all the days, hours, and minutes needed to get His will accomplished if you are willing to participate.
So don’t hold tight to anything that has the potential to segregate you from God. Keep very short accounts, never harbor forgiveness, and allow all our decisions to go to His feet first. The time is critical now to be about the Father’s business. Don’t waste His valuable time on your personal projects that are just going to burn up eventually. All that we do should be done with a heavenly purpose in mind. You can find that God keeps His ever watchful eye upon this world and knows all of its mysteries. God’s treasures hold vast resources no man can match, and with the full knowledge of how every one of them should be used. For God will lead you beside still waters and daily restore your soul. He will lead you along the very paths of His righteousness, He grants you your next breath and will never leave you or forsake you. Absolutely nothing is ever too hard for God, never is His mighty arm so short that He can’t reach where ever needed, and do all that needs done.
This is an excerpt from my recent new book published as “What God Can Do”.
We can’t change the world but we can pray. We can’t change other people’s lives but we can pray. We may get confused but we can pray. We may not be strong enough to face a trial but we can pray. We may have to face a great giant in life and become afraid but we can pray. We may become weakened or sick in body but we can pray. We may not understand what to do in a situation but we can pray. We may see that our finances and resources are bleak but we can pray. We can become so discouraged in life but we can pray. We may have to face an enemy we can’t handle but we can pray. We may believe all hope is gone but we can pray. We may become so broken from struggles with life but we still can pray. We may lose things and people that are so dear to us but we can pray. We may fight battle after battle and feel we may never win yet we can pray. We may become disillusioned with the pressures of life but we can pray. At times we may even fall into sin and feel so unworthy that we can’t lift our face toward heaven yet we can still pray. We may just want to give up and not try anymore but you can still pray.
And when we pray, we can rest assured that God hears and is more than enough to handle each and every prayer. God reminds us of this in Psalm 121:2. “My help comes from the Lord, the maker of heaven and earth.”
This is an unusual thought, but if we really want to consider what the cost was for a Savior for all mankind to be sent to earth, then what went with it? Jesus was not just a baby boy born in Bethlehem, or among animals in a cave-type stable. There would be a price for this baby Jesus, born by a young virgin girl. Placed in her womb was the Son of God by the Holy Spirit.
There would be a price for the Son of God to be born. It would cost Jesus His life to save ours. This baby would grow up to be a man to walk on the same earth that we walk on. He was the God-man to show humanity that we can live above this world and experience a life of freedom from sin and of hope.
This baby Jesus came to bring us peace for He was the Prince of Peace, but He also came to divide us from the ways of the world. And this is where the price becomes real. Jesus is not a baby in a manger. Jesus is God, made into flesh and the conqueror of the sins of the world.
Far too many leave Jesus in the manger and that is how they would like to remember Him. But don’t we forget the price HE paid for coming out of that manger?
Jesus came to be an example of a righteous way of life to defeat every enemy we will ever face here on this earth.
Galatians 4: “…God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law… Therefore you are no longer a slave but…an heir of God through Christ.
Jesus was God in the flesh and still is with us today.
Just who was Joseph? Was he always an honorable man? Did God have some special lessons for him to learn before he could truly be used by God? God needed to adjust Joseph’s attitude and way of thinking. First of all, Joseph’s father didn’t help matters when he showed Joseph favor in front of Joseph’s brothers.
His brothers were no angels, they resented Joseph because of his favoritism and Joseph held it over them, which didn’t help matters. They devised a plan to get rid of him. Joseph was sold into slavery and became a high official’s servant. Joseph runs the official’s house. But a problem arises with the man’s wife. The woman tries to entice him to be her lover. But he refuses and runs off and is accused of assault.
Joseph chose to honor God. Yet Joseph is placed in prison. God is setting Joseph up to see how he is going to handle this matter. Joseph helps two government officials. One is released from prison and Joseph tells him his sad story. Yet the scripture says in Genesis chapter 39:23, “Yet the chief butler did not remember Joseph, but forgot him.” I know it is hard to believe, but here’s a guy that tells you your future and you forgot him? Not hardly! God made the butler forget because Joseph hadn’t gotten the picture yet. And God was not finished in the classroom.
Now two years later and it is time for Joseph to be released by God by His reasons Pharaoh sent and called Joseph and they brought him quickly out of the dungeon. Now, Joseph can be used because he gives God the credit when he says, “It is not me, but God that will show you.” Now God can get the glory as Joseph begins to see his purpose for God. Something happened in that two year period. Something happened that God was able to humble Joseph enough to now use his life according to God’s purpose. How long does God have to keep us in prison or like places? God always tries to get us into places where we can learn some of the things we need. Now Joseph gets promoted by God, not by man, the one who chose him for his special purpose in the first place, it just took Joseph some time. God is always ready but the question is always the same, are we?
The Bible has many accounts of people deciding what was most important to them. Those were not family or close friends but just things, like possessions and livelihood.
In Matthew, chapter 9, you’ll find the story of the demon-possessed man who, when delivered, Jesus sent the demons into pigs, where 2000 of them ran off a cliff into the sea. Yet the people knowing this was God’s way of dealing with a sinful situation still asked Jesus to leave them for they didn’t want Jesus to mess up any more of their commerce. It was more important to them.
Then there is the account of the rich young ruler in Luke, chapter 18 of the Bible. Here a man who said he wanted to follow Christ would not when he had to make the choice of all his possessions versus following Jesus. He chose his possessions.
Many do this every day. They say they love God and want to do His will but when hard choices must be made, they generally choose things that are more important to them. They trade following God’s plan for what they feel is more important. We will do this a lot unless we will look at life and all of our decisions with eternity in mind.
Too many miss out on heaven’s best because of how they feel about their homes or boats, land or money. Things are just that – things. And are these things really that important to go and trade off one’s soul just for earthly pleasure or gain?