“When the even was come, there came a rich man of Arimathaea, named Joseph, who also himself was Jesus’ disciple: he went to Pilate, and begged the body of Jesus. Then Pilate commanded the body to be delivered. And when Joseph had taken the body, he wrapped it in a clean linen cloth, and laid it in his own new tomb, which he had hewn out in the rock: and he rolled a great stone to the door of the sepulchre, and departed. And there was Mary Magdalene, and the other Mary, sitting over against the sepulchre.” Matthew 27:57-61
“But what think ye? A certain man had two sons; and he came to the first, and said, ‘Son, go work to day in my vineyard.’ He answered and said, ‘I will not:’ but afterward he repented, and went. And he came to the second, and said likewise. And he answered and said, ‘I go, sir:’ and went not.
Whether of them twain did the will of his father?’
They say unto Him, ‘The first.’ Jesus saith unto them,
‘Verily I say unto you, That the publicans and the harlots go into the kingdom of God before you. For John came unto you in the way of righteousness, and ye believed him not: but the publicans and the harlots believed him: and ye, when ye had seen, repented not afterward, that ye might believe him.” Matthew 21:28-32
“And when it was evening, His disciples came to Him, saying, ‘This is a desert place, and the time is now past; send the multitude away, that they may go into the villages, and buy themselves victuals.’ But Jesus said unto them,
‘They need not depart; give ye them to eat.’
And they say unto Him, ‘We have here but five loaves, and two fishes.’ He said,
‘Bring them hither to Me.’
And He commanded the multitude to sit down on the grass, and took the five loaves, and the two fishes, and looking up to heaven, He blessed, and brake, and gave the loaves to His disciples, and the disciples to the multitude. And they did all eat, and were filled: and they took up of the fragments that remained twelve baskets full. And they that had eaten were about five thousand men, beside women and children.” Matthew 14:15-21
“Then began He to upbraid the cities wherein most of His mighty works were done, because they repented not:
‘Woe unto thee, Chorazin! Woe unto thee, Bethsaida! For if the mighty works, which were done in you, had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. But I say unto you, It shall be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon at the day of judgment, than for you. And thou, Capernaum, which art exalted unto heaven, shalt be brought down to hell: for if the mighty works, which have been done in thee, had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this day. But I say unto you, That it shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom in the day of judgment, than for thee.’ ” Matthew 11:20-24
“Let not mercy and truth forsake thee: bind them about thy neck; write them upon the table of thine heart: so shalt thou find favour and good understanding in the sight of God and man.” Proverbs 3:3-4
“Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them: for this is the law and the prophets.
Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.” Matthew 7:12-14
“And Jesus, walking by the sea of Galilee, saw two brethren, Simon called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea: for they were fishers. And He saith unto them,
‘Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men.’
And they straightway left their nets, and followed Him.” Matthew 4:18-20
“For the LORD giveth wisdom: out of His mouth cometh knowledge and understanding. He layeth up sound wisdom for the righteous: He is a buckler to them that walk uprightly. He keepeth the paths of judgment, and preserveth the way of His saints.
Then shalt thou understand righteousness, and judgment, and equity; yea, every good path.” Proverbs 2:6-9
“Because I have called, and ye refused; I have stretched out my hand, and no man regarded; but ye have set at nought all my counsel, and would none of my reproof: I also will laugh at your calamity; I will mock when your fear cometh; when your fear cometh as desolation, and your destruction cometh as a whirlwind; when distress and anguish cometh upon you.” Proverbs 1:24-27
“Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife: and knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn Son: and he called His name JESUS.” Matthew 1:24-25
“Then the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews, came Jesus and stood in the midst, and saith unto them,
‘Peace be unto you.’
And when He had so said, He shewed unto them His hands and His side. Then were the disciples glad, when they saw the Lord. Then said Jesus to them again,
‘Peace be unto you: as My Father hath sent Me, even so send I you.’
And when He had said this, He breathed on them, and saith unto them,
‘Receive ye the Holy Ghost: whose soever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them; and whose soever sins ye retain, they are retained.’ ” John 20:19-23
“Great is our Lord, and of great power: His understanding is infinite. The LORD lifteth up the meek: He casteth the wicked down to the ground.” Psalm 147:5-6
“Father, I will that they also, whom Thou hast given Me, be with Me where I am; that they may behold My glory, which Thou hast given Me: for Thou lovedst Me before the foundation of the world.” John 17:24
“If I had not come and spoken unto them, they had not had sin: but now they have no cloke for their sin.
He that hateth Me hateth My Father also. If I had not done among them the works which none other man did, they had not had sin: but now have they both seen and hated both Me and My Father. But this cometh to pass, that the word might be fulfilled that is written in their law, ‘They hated Me without a cause.’ But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, He shall testify of Me: and ye also shall bear witness, because ye have been with Me from the beginning.” John 15:22-27
“But some of them went their ways to the Pharisees, and told them what things Jesus had done. Then gathered the chief priests and the Pharisees a council, and said, ‘What do we? For this Man doeth many miracles. If we let Him thus alone, all will believe on Him: and the Romans shall come and take away both our place and nation.’
And one of them, named Caiaphas, being the high priest that same year, said unto them, ‘Ye know nothing at all, nor consider that it is expedient for us, that one man should die for the people, and that the whole nation perish not.’
And this spake he not of himself: but being high priest that year, he prophesied that Jesus should die for that nation; and not for that nation only, but that also He should gather together in one the children of God that were scattered abroad.
Then from that day forth they took counsel together for to put Him to death.” John 11:46-53
“Now about the midst of the feast Jesus went up into the temple, and taught. And the Jews marvelled, saying, ‘How knoweth this man letters, having never learned?’ Jesus answered them, and said,
‘My doctrine is not Mine, but His that sent Me. If any man will do His will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God, or whether I speak of Myself. He that speaketh of himself seeketh his own glory: but He that seeketh His glory that sent Him, the same is true, and no unrighteousness is in Him.
Did not Moses give you the law, and yet none of you keepeth the law? Why go ye about to kill Me?’ ” John 7:14-19
“For the Father judgeth no man, but hath committed all judgment unto the Son: that all should honour the Son, even as they honour the Father. He that honoureth not the Son honoureth not the Father which hath sent Him.
Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth My word, and believeth on Him that sent Me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.
Verily, verily, I say unto you, The hour is coming, and now is, when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God: and they that hear shall live. For as the Father hath life in Himself; so hath He given to the Son to have life in Himself; and hath given Him authority to execute judgment also, because He is the Son of Man.” John 5:22-27
“And the Jews’ Passover was at hand, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem, and found in the temple those that sold oxen and sheep and doves, and the changers of money sitting: and when He had made a scourge of small cords, He drove them all out of the temple, and the sheep, and the oxen; and poured out the changers’ money, and overthrew the tables; and said unto them that sold doves,
‘Take these things hence; make not My Father’s house an house of merchandise.’
And His disciples remembered that it was written, ‘The zeal of thine house hath eaten me up.’ ” John 2:13-17
“And there followed Him a great company of people, and of women, which also bewailed and lamented Him. But Jesus turning unto them said,
‘Daughters of Jerusalem, weep not for Me, but weep for yourselves, and for your children. For, behold, the days are coming, in the which they shall say, ‘Blessed are the barren, and the wombs that never bare, and the paps which never gave suck.’ Then shall they begin to say to the mountains, ‘Fall on us;’ and to the hills, ‘Cover us.’ For if they do these things in a green tree, what shall be done in the dry?’ ” Luke 23:27-31
“Praise ye the LORD. Blessed is the man that feareth the LORD, that delighteth greatly in His commandments.” Psalm 112:1
“Then Zedekiah the king sent, and took him out: and the king asked him secretly in his house, and said, ‘Is there any word from the LORD?’ And Jeremiah said, ‘There is: for, said He, thou shalt be delivered into the hand of the king of Babylon.’ ” Jeremiah 37:17
In a day when we should have all kinds of time to hear God we have less time. I guess we feel we always have to be doing something; something other than listening to God. There are many voices to hear – the psychiatrist, the psychologist, stock brokers, advice columnist, medical doctors, senators, congressmen, governors, and you could go on. People listen to all these voices, and fail to hear what God says. We fail to hear because our hearts are not tuned in to God, but are tuned in to the things and goings on of our own ways. Jesus said, “He that hath ears to hear, let him hear”, and, “If any man have ears to hear, let him hear” (Mark 4:9, 23). He also said, “My mother and my brethren are these which hear the word of God and do it” (Luke 8:21). A lot of people may ask, “Is there a word from God?”, and may have just heard God’s voice the night before through a man of God proclaiming the gospel of Jesus Christ. What do they do with it? They sense a presence, but put it off as just emotions, or their mind playing tricks on them. They hear God’s word, but will not do it.
We are not part of the body of Christ unless we have begun to do the Word, and not just hear it. Zedekiah heard, but did not do. If you will read Jeremiah 38 and 39 you will see the result of his not doing. God’s desire for us is that we hear His Word and do it. If God has at one time spoken to us and we have not did it; He will not speak to us something new until we carry out that Word which has not been done.
God desires for us to live or abide in His Word, but when we get out of His Word we begin to doubt, and fear begins to control our lives. Jesus said, “If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; and ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free” (John 8:31-32). God always has our best at heart. When we are out of His word we are out of His will, and therefore often we reap what we have sown.
Often people do not understand a message and it is partly because they do not hear. They hear words, but they are not tuned in to what is being said. Jesus said, “Why do ye not understand my speech? Even because ye cannot hear my word”, and in another verse He says, “He that is of God heareth God’s words: ye therefore hear them not, because ye are not of God” (John 8:43, 47). It is evident that when Jesus used the word “Hear” in these verses He meant to hear was to put into action what He had said.
Is God still speaking today? Do we need to ask? There are people being saved. There are backsliden Christians rededicating their lives to Christ. YES! God is still speaking. We can look in our nation, and the gross immorality, and in it God is saying, “Repent and come back to Me”. We can look at natures pollution and God says, “I left man to care for this planet, but the sin of lust, greed, and godlessness has destroyed her created beauty”. On a more individual level God says, “Do you know why I am not blessing you? Because you did not ‘Go’ as I commissioned you”. “Do you know why you are suffering financially? Because you have not been a good steward with what I have entrusted to your care”. He speaks to all of us through His Spirit whom He sent to be our Comforter, Guide, by His Word. Jesus said of Him, “Howbeit when He, the Spirit of truth, is come, He will guide you into all truth: for He shall not speak of Himself; but whatsoever He shall hear, that shall He speak ; and He will show you things to come” (John 16:13). God’s Word is truth. The Holy Spirit guides us, and teaches us God’s Word. He convicts of sin, righteousness, and judgment (See v.8).
In the book of the Revelation our Savior speaks seven times of the Holy Spirit speaking. He said, “He that hath an ear to hear let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.” The Spirit guiding into truth, and glorifying Jesus Christ.
“Is there a word from the LORD? There is…”. His Word is not bad. It is always for the well being of His children. We may not always understand, but God’s Word never fails. God never breaks a promise. How is God speaking in our day? He speaks first of all through the written Word guiding by His Spirit; secondly, He speaks by the Spirit impressing upon our hearts something we ought to do; thirdly He speaks through circumstances; and finally He speaks through other people, a friend, relative, or even an enemy or stranger. God does have a word for us today. Do you have an ear to hear? WELL LISTEN!
If you are not hearing God speak you need ears to hear Him. You get those ears by His grace. You hear Him as You read the only message He has given to us and that is the Bible.
READ PSALM 81:8-14
“His name shall endure for ever: his name shall be continued as long as the sun: and men shall be blessed in him: all nations shall call him blessed.
Blessed be the LORD God, the God of Israel, who only doeth wondrous things.” Psalm 72:17-18
“And with Him they crucify two thieves; the one on His right hand, and the other on His left. And the Scripture was fulfilled, which saith, ‘And He was numbered with the transgressors.’ ” Mark 15:27-28
“But He held His peace, and answered nothing. Again the high priest asked Him, and said unto Him, ‘Art Thou the Christ, the Son of the Blessed?’ And Jesus said,
‘I am: and ye shall see the Son of Man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven.’ ” Mark 14:62-62
“But Jesus called them and saith unto them,
‘Ye know that they which are accounted to rule over the Gentiles exercise lordship over them; and their great ones exercise authority upon them. But so shall it not be among you: but whosoever will be great among you, shall be your minister: and whosoever of you will be the chiefest, shall be servant of all. For even the Son of Man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.’ ” Mark 10:42-45
“And He said,
‘So is the kingdom of God, as if a man should cast seed into the ground; and should sleep, and rise night and day, and the seed should spring and grow up, he knoweth not how. For the earth bringeth forth fruit of herself; first the blade, then the ear, after that the full corn in the ear. But when the fruit is brought forth, immediately he putteth in the sickle, because the harvest is come.’ ” Mark 4:26-29
“And in the morning, rising up a great while before day, He went out, and departed into a solitary place, and there prayed. And Simon and they that were with Him followed after Him.” Mark 1:35-36
Let me tell you how I determine what verses I share and comment on each time. I am spending the year of 2021 reading the Gospels through each month. I am also reading Psalms and Proverbs 1 chapter per day. On thirty day months I read one Psalm, and on thirty one day months I read one chapter of Proverbs – these for extra reading and encouragement and instruction in wisdom, knowledge and understanding.
What I have been sharing here has been mostly from the Gospels; at least beginning in March it was. When I share from the gospels I try not to repeat something I have shared before, but I know I am not successful at that every time. Yet, there must be a reason for repeating it – at least I trust that there is.
Today, as I was reading I took note of the verses above how Jesus went out before the dawning of the day to pray. The Gospels mentions this quite often. I know that I do not pray as I should; yet I also know that where ever I am; whether I am walking, driving, shopping with my wife, in study, or what ever I am doing I can pray. Jesus has made that possible through the death of His cross.
I also know that I need dedicated time to pray. I would desire to be like the disciples in the verse above that followed Jesus to His solitary place, to be with Him. I need that time, I need that solitary place each and every day to be in prayer; dedicated place, dedicated prayer; and that will lead to a dedicated life in Him.
I pray that you have a dedicated and solitary place where you hear from God through His word, and where He hears from you in prayer.
“Then saith He unto them, ‘My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death: tarry ye here, and watch with Me.’ ” Matthew 26:38
We humans experience pressure. It is called stress. Those of us who know Jesus as our Lord and Savior believe Jesus to be fully God and fully Man. We recognize Him as flesh and blood human, of the race of Adam just as we are.
I have for many years struggled over this scene of Jesus in the garden of Gethsemane and have heard and been taught for years that Jesus was asking to be delivered from the cross. In recent years I have settled this in my own heart and mind, and I believe it is Scriptural.
I see many times that the gospels mention Jesus having His eyes set on Jerusalem near the final days of His life. That meaning He had His eyes set on paying our sin debt. That is one reason I cannot fathom the idea of His praying to be delivered from dying on the cross.
The verse above settles it for me. “My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death…” and that looks to be what He is going to pray about when He says, “Let this cup pass from Me”. He was pressured by what would be too early a death right there in Gethsemane.
I believe the Father answered His prayer and gave Him the physical strength to make it to the cross where He fulfilled the Father’s will dying for my sins, your sins, and the sins of the whole world.
…I want all who will hear to know that Jesus Christ died for your sins, mine and yours, and that He was buried carrying away all our sin, shame and condemnation, and He rose from the grave on the third day. He forever lives.
Because He came out alive we can live with Him in eternity together with Him in His glory.
If you will confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus, and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead you shall be saved (Romans 10:9-10).
When you do that; and if you have already done that, then you know the greatness of this great Resurrection Sunday. Jesus is Alive.
“When Jesus heard, He marvelled, and said to them that followed, ‘Verily I say unto you, I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel. And I say unto you, That many shall come from the east and west, and shall sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven. But the children of the kingdom shall be cast out into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’ ” Matthew 8:10-12
This Roman centurion was over a group of men that was about 100 in number. He knew authority when he saw it; and he saw Jesus as a Man with authority, so he knew he could trust Him with the healing of his servant.
Jesus in His words of the centurion’s faith was words of applause. It was a greater faith than He had seen among His own people; especially the Jewish leaders of their religion.
There is much the Christian needs to hear in the words of Jesus.
The first one I see is this; Just because you say your a Christian, yet do not believe the word of god, does not mean you are a Christian;
The second one that I see is, that judgment awaits all who claim to know Jesus, yet do not live according to His word, starting with believing what God says of His Son, and what the Son says of Himself; and
The third, just a thought; the judgment for a professor that does not possess the Spirit of Christ [God] is not His (Romans 8:9), and will be judged more severely.
It is better to be an outsider of the religious, yet believe the word of God, than to be a religious insider and miss God completely by not believing His word.
In closing these thoughts be sure you have been redeemed by the blood of Jesus shed on Calvary’s cross for the sins of the word, believe Jesus died, was buried, and that He rose again (Romans 10:9-10).
I was reading in Jude this morning and was reminded of the study I did in this epistle about 13 years ago. I found the study and I share these thoughts from verse 4 again in 2021 because it is still true today.
“For certain men have crept in unnoticed, who long ago were marked out for this condemnation, ungodly men, who turn the grace of God into lewdness and deny the only Lord God and our Lord Jesus Christ.” Jude 4 (NKJV).
Hopefully most Christians have noticed that there is a whole lot of religious rhetoric in the world and most of what you will see on what poses as “Christian Television”. The aim of many in these supposed ministries is not the promotion of the glory of Jesus Christ, but to fill their pocket books, and tell you things like, “If you are sick you have sinned”. They may not be so brash as to say that as clearly as that, but that is what they mean.
These are apostates. They actually hate the truth of Jesus Christ. They deny Jesus Christ by changing the meaning of His death on the cross, and will tell you things, such as, “On the cross Jesus was just a little wimp who couldn’t do anything.” The truth of that is that the victory of Jesus was the cross. It was on the cross where Satan, and Hell and sin were defeated. During that three hours of darkness there was the greatest war which has ever taken place; that ever took place in eternity. Jesus was and is the Victor because after He was laid in a borrowed grave He came out alive showing the victory of the cross.
The men and women who proclaim that your life should be without sickness, you should always be victorious, and always have a full bank account; and if you don’t you have sinned; are liars and are following their father the devil. They are deceivers and antichrist.
Beware of those teachers who call on you to give money to them, “And you will be blessed a hundred fold”. Jesus warned,
“Take heed that no man deceive you. For many shall come in My name, saying, ‘I am Christ’; and shall deceive many.’ ” Matthew 24:4-5
Now, these apostates may not be actually saying they are Christ, but they are denying the very power of Christ, and His cross. When you deny the power of His cross you deny Him.
These teachers are condemned people. They will have a place in eternity, but not with Jesus Christ. Be aware of false teachers. Believe the Word of God, and trust Him.