Camp Delight – Christmas Day Two Hundred and Six

What do I want for Christmas?

Today being the final day of Youth Camp at Baptist Hill in Mt. Vernon, Missouri; I want the Camp Cooks to continue to be blessed through this day, and they are being; and that the youth at camp have been brought nearer to Jesus than they were previously, and all who will might find faith in Jesus as their personal Lord and Savior.

Jesus therefore answered and said unto them, Murmur not among yourselves. No man can come to Me, except the Father which hath sent Me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day. It is written in the prophets, And they shall be all taught of God. Every man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father, cometh unto me. Not that any man hath seen the Father, save He which is of God, He hath seen the Father. Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on Me hath everlasting life. I am that bread of life. Your fathers did eat manna in the wilderness, and are dead. This is the bread which cometh down from heaven, that a man may eat thereof, and not die. I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is My flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.” John 6:43-51 (KJV)

Camp Delight – Christmas Day Two Hundred and Seven

What do I want for Christmas?

I want the Youth at camp to hear the clear presentation of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and that the Holy Spirit would speak to their hearts and minds to understand, know and believe that Jesus is the Christ the Son of the Living God who died on the cross, was buried and rose bodily from the grave; and is to return to take us to Himself.

And He said, Therefore said I unto you, that no man can come unto Me, except it were given unto him of My Father. From that time many of His disciples went back, and walked no more with Him. Then said Jesus unto the twelve, Will ye also go away? Then Simon Peter answered Him, Lord, to whom shall we go? Thou hast the words of eternal life. And we believe and are sure that Thou art that Christ, the Son of the living God.” John 6:65-69 (KJV)

 

Camp Delight – Christmas Day Two Hundred and Eight

What do I want for Christmas?

I want the Camp Cooks, Bible Teachers and CGL’s [Cabin Group Leaders] to dedicate themselves to the work of the Lord, work for Him and to be the witnesses of Jesus Christ that we should be.

Thus it is written, and thus it behoved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day: and that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in His name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. And ye are witnesses of these things. And, behold, I send the promise of My Father upon you: but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high.”  [Jesus Christ] Luke 24:46-49 (KJV)

Camp Delight – Christmas Day Two Hundred and Nine

What do I want for Christmas?

I want the first day of Barry County Baptist Association Youth Camp at Baptist Hill, Mt. Vernon, Missouri to be a fruitful, spiritually rewarding one where Christian youth are inspired, encouraged, filled with the Spirit of Christ, and grow in love with Jesus during this week.

Flee also youthful lusts: but follow righteousness, faith, charity, peace, with them that call on the Lord out of a pure heart.” 2 Timothy 2:22 (KJV)

“Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity.” 1 Timothy 4:12

Christmas Day Two Hundred and Ten

What do I want for Christmas?

I want my family, friends, neighbors, and U. S. of A. citizens to remember those who died for the freedoms that we have today; and to drive carefully as you travel back to your homes.

Have a blessed and safe Memorial Day, and remember everyday the One who died to free you from sin, and death; Jesus Christ.

Now the Lord is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.” 2 Corinthians 3:17 (KJV)

“Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage.” Galations 5:1

The Word of Jesus Christ – Christmas Day Two Hundred and Thirteen

What do I want for Christmas?

When I wrote yesterday of the Exclusiveness of Christ; I noted that the numbers of readings and likes from the day before was considerably less.  I pray that was because the readers did not come rather than they did not like the teaching.

I want today for you to realize that if the exclusiveness of Christ is not so, then the words of Jesus in John 14:6 – 7 are not true, that Jesus would be a liar, and could not be trusted; then, He would not be a good teacher, a good man, but a deceiver; and no one would then have any hope.

I want you to know today, that Jesus is everything He claimed to be.  He is the Son of God, and God the Son.  Every word He has spoken and speaks is Truth.

He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.” John 3:36 (KJV)

“Then Jesus cried out and said, “He who believes in Me, believes not in Me but in Him who sent Me. And he who sees Me sees Him who sent Me. I have come as a light into the world, that whoever believes in Me should not abide in darkness. And if anyone hears My words and does not believe, I do not judge him; for I did not come to judge the world but to save the world. He who rejects Me, and does not receive My words, has that which judges him— the word that I have spoken will judge him in the last day. For I have not spoken on My own authority; but the Father who sent Me gave Me a command, what I should say and what I should speak. And I know that His command is everlasting life. Therefore, whatever I speak, just as the Father has told Me, so I speak.” John 12:44-50 (NKJV)

Christmas Day Two Hundred and Fifteen

What do I want for Christmas?

I want to think, and I want every man who aspires to be godly; to think on the LORD and His Word, to love his wife, and children; and to care for them as a husband and father ought; and to put the things of this world on the back burner; and to thank God every day for His blessings on us.

Eat thou not the bread of him that hath an evil eye, neither desire thou his dainty meats: for as he thinketh in his heart, so is he: Eat and drink, saith he to thee; but his heart is not with thee. The morsel which thou hast eaten shalt thou vomit up, and lose thy sweet words.” Proverbs 23:6-8 (KJV)

“But those things which proceed out of the mouth come forth from the heart; and they defile the man. For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies: these are the things which defile a man: but to eat with unwashen hands defileth not a man.”  [Jesus Christ]  Matthew 15:18-20

Christmas Day Two Hundred and Sixteen

What do I want for Christmas?

I want to love what God loves, and to hate what God hates.

I hate, I despise your feast days, and I will not smell in your solemn assemblies.” Amos 5:21 (KJV)

“But whoso keepeth His word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in Him. He that saith he abideth in Him ought himself also so to walk, even as He walked.” 1 John 2:5-6

“Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as He is, so are we in this world. There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love. We love Him, because He first loved us. If a man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen? And this commandment have we from Him, That he who loveth God love his brother also.” 1 John 4:17-21

Christmas Day Two Hundred and Seventeen

What do I want for Christmas?

I want always when I have a feeling of fear to go to my Lord and Savior and find rest and peace in Him; and to no longer fear, anything but Him.

What time I am afraid, I will trust in Thee.” Psalm 56:3 (KJV)
“In God have I put my trust: I will not be afraid what man can do unto me.” Psalm 56:11

“But he saith unto them, It is I; be not afraid.”  [Jesus Christ] John 6:20

Christmas Day Two Hundred and Eighteen

My wife and I went to spend some time with our son in Arkansas, and to celebrate the fifth birthday of their youngest daughter.  I had intended to do some post automatically, but I went off and forgot; so that is why there has been no Christmas countdown on Friday May 20, or Saturday May 21.  Back to the countdown.

What do I want for Christmas?

This is another LORD’S Day; so I want Jesus to always be my treasure, and for nothing to come between my love for Him.

There is treasure to be desired and oil in the dwelling of the wise; but a foolish man spendeth it up.” Proverbs 21:20 (KJV)

“For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.” [Jesus] Matthew 6:21

Christmas Day Two Hundred Twenty and Four

What do I want for Christmas?

It is a couple of days late in coming, but since Saturday May 14 was the 68th Anniversary/Birthday of Israel returning as a nation; I want them to be blessed by God, protected, and encouraged to come to the Truth of the Christ.

May YHWH bless His people in that land, and bless the land again.

Now the LORD had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father’s house, unto a land that I will shew thee: and I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing: and I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed.” Genesis 12:1-3 (KJV)
“And now therefore thus saith the LORD, the God of Israel, concerning this city, whereof ye say, It shall be delivered into the hand of the king of Babylon by the sword, and by the famine, and by the pestilence; Behold, I will gather them out of all countries, whither I have driven them in Mine anger, and in My fury, and in great wrath; and I will bring them again unto this place, and I will cause them to dwell safely: and they shall be My people, and I will be their God: and I will give them one heart, and one way, that they may fear Me for ever, for the good of them, and of their children after them: and I will make an everlasting covenant with them, that I will not turn away from them, to do them good; but I will put My fear in their hearts, that they shall not depart from Me. Yea, I will rejoice over them to do them good, and I will plant them in this land assuredly with My whole heart and with My whole soul. For thus saith the LORD; Like as I have brought all this great evil upon this people, so will I bring upon them all the good that I have promised them. And fields shall be bought in this land, whereof ye say, It is desolate without man or beast; it is given into the hand of the Chaldeans. Men shall buy fields for money, and subscribe evidences, and seal them, and take witnesses in the land of Benjamin, and in the places about Jerusalem, and in the cities of Judah, and in the cities of the mountains, and in the cities of the valley, and in the cities of the south: for I will cause their captivity to return, saith the LORD.” Jeremiah 32:36-44

Christmas Day Two Hundred Twenty and Five

What do I want for Christmas?

I want to walk with God, so that others may see His Son Jesus Christ living in me.

Can two walk together, except they be agreed?” Amos 3:3 (KJV)

“This is the genealogy of Noah. Noah was a just man, perfect in his generations. Noah walked with God.” Genesis 6:9 (NKJV)

“He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?” Micah 6:8 (KJV)

Also see Genesis 5:22-24;

Christmas Day Two Hundred Twenty and Seven

What do I want for Christmas?

I want to always trust in the LORD God through His Son Jesus Christ no matter what may come, and I want all my family, neighbors near and far to trust Him as well.

 

My soul, wait thou only upon God; for my expectation is from Him. He only is my rock and my salvation: He is my defence; I shall not be moved. In God is my salvation and my glory: the rock of my strength, and my refuge, is in God. Trust in Him at all times; ye people, pour out your heart before Him: God is a refuge for us. Selah.” Psalm 62:5-8 (KJV)

Christmas Day Two Hundred Thirty and Three

What do I want for Christmas?

Today’s “want” is going to be a bit political, but I see it as a real need among those who name the name of Jesus as their Lord and Savior.

I want for those who call themselves Christian to decide to get behind one Presidential candidate who has some principle, moral character,  a desire to listen to God and His word and show this Country [U. S. of A.] through the might, Spirit and power of God who the real power of this country is  – not us but Him.

I do believe that if Christians would get behind the candidate like this, this individual would win the election.

The LORD bringeth the counsel of the heathen to nought: He maketh the devices of the people of none effect. The counsel of the LORD standeth for ever, the thoughts of His heart to all generations. Blessed is the nation whose God is the LORD; and the people whom He hath chosen for His own inheritance.” Psalm 33:10-12 (KJV)

This is a work, a miracle only God could perform.

Christmas Day Two Hundred Thirty and Five

What do I want for Christmas?

I want to be faithful to the LORD God today through His Son Jesus Christ; to be faithful in serving Him and serving others; to be a faithful pastor, preacher of the Word; husband to my wife, father to my children, grandfather to my grandchildren; and in that order.

I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect will of God.” Romans 12:1-2 (KJV)

“I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave Himself for me.” Galations 2:20

Day Two Hundred Seventy and Six

What do I want for Christmas?

I want everyone to understand the true meaning of Easter; that it is about the death, burial and bodily resurrection of the Lord and Savior of all creation; that the only hope for our world is Jesus Christ, risen from the dead, eternally alive, and reigning as the King of kings, and Lord of lords.

Fear not; I am the First and the Last: I am He that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death.” [Jesus Christ] Revelation 1:17b-18 (KJV)

Also see Isaiah 41:4 and 44:6

Day Two Hundred Seventy and Seven

What do I want for Christmas?

I want God’s thoughts to be my thoughts, and His ways my ways.

Seek ye the LORD while He may be found, call ye upon Him while He is near: let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD, and He will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon. For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways, saith the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts. For as the rain cometh down, and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater: so shall My word be that goeth forth out of My mouth: it shall not return unto Me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.” Isaiah 55:6-11 (KJV)

Christmas – Day 281

What do I want for Christmas?

On this Palm Sunday, remembering the last days in the life of our Savior before His death on the cross, burial, and bodily resurrection; I want to grow more in love with my Lord and Savior, and to appreciate everyday as a day He has given me to celebrate Him.

And when they drew nigh unto Jerusalem, and were come to Bethphage, unto the Mount of Olives, then sent Jesus two disciples, saying unto them, Go into the village over against you, and straightway ye shall find an ass tied, and a colt with her: loose them, and bring them unto Me. And if any man say ought unto you, ye shall say, The Lord hath need of them; and straightway he will send them. All this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, saying, Tell ye the daughter of Sion, Behold, thy King cometh unto thee, meek, and sitting upon an ass, and a colt the foal of an ass. And the disciples went, and did as Jesus commanded them, and brought the ass, and the colt, and put on them their clothes, and they set Him thereon. And a very great multitude spread their garments in the way; others cut down branches from the trees, and strawed them in the way. And the multitudes that went before, and that followed, cried, saying, Hosanna to the Son of David: Blessed is He that cometh in the name of the Lord; Hosanna in the highest. And when He was come into Jerusalem, all the city was moved, saying, Who is this? And the multitude said, This is Jesus the prophet of Nazareth of Galilee.” Matthew 21:1-11 (KJV)

Day Two Hundred Eighty and Five

What do I want for Christmas?

I want people to know that there is no peace to the wicked.

There is no peace, saith the LORD, unto the wicked.” Isaiah 48:22 (KJV)
“God judgeth the righteous, and God is angry with the wicked every day.” Psalm 7:11

“Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ…” Romans 5:1

Day Three Hundred Twenty and Six

What do I want for Christmas?

Today, and every day I want to thank the LORD the Creator of heaven and earth for His bountiful goodness, love, mercy, grace, for the cross of Jesus Christ; and for holding all things together; in my life and in the world.  Will you join me in being thankful to Him today.  Believe, trust the Lord Jesus Christ, and it will begin.

Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 (NKJV)

“Oh, give thanks to the LORD, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever. Oh, give thanks to the God of gods! For His mercy endures forever. Oh, give thanks to the Lord of lords! For His mercy endures forever…” Psalm 136:1-3

Day Three Hundred Twenty and Seven

What do I want for Christmas?

I want a leader who will walk in righteousness; who will be impartial to all; who will visit the orphan, aid the widows, and give strength to the weak and the helpless; who will make all people equal in his purview of power.

Even so come Lord Jesus.  Because He is the only One who can fulfill this desire.

“The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon Me, because the LORD has anointed Me to preach good tidings to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound; to proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all who mourn, to console those who mourn in Zion, to give them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they may be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that He may be glorified.” Isaiah 61:1-3 (NKJV)

Day Three Three Three

What do I want for Christmas?

I want to want what God wants and desires for my family, friends, neighbors, myself, and the rest of the world.

How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God!  How great is the sum of them!  If I should count them, they would be more in number than the sand: When I awake, I am still with You.” Psalm 139:17-18 (NKJV)

Day Three Hundred Thirty and Nine

What do I want for Christmas?

I want GOD to show Himself strong in and through me that others may see what is going on in me is GOD.  In this I also desire that it be so of my family, friends, neighbors, my community, State, Nation, and the world.

Help me, O LORD my God! Oh, save me according to Your mercy, That they may know that this is Your hand—That You, LORD, have done it!” Psalm 109:26-27 (NKJV)

“For the eyes of the LORD run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to show Himself strong on behalf of those whose heart is loyal to Him…” 2 Chronicles 16:9a

Day Three Hundred Forty and Three

What do I want for Christmas?

I want all races of people to be one in Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior;  there is truly only one race; the human race, and all of our blood flows red.

“Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”” Genesis 1:26-28 (NKJV)

Day Three Hundred Forty and Nine

What do I want for Christmas?

I want the lunacy of the lottery to end; and that people might have the same passion and drive to know God, His love, His righteousness, His justice, and peace.

Give us help from trouble, for the help of man is useless.  Through God we will do valiantly, For it is He who shall tread down our enemies.”  Psalm 60:11-12 (NKJV)

Be exalted, O God, above the heavens; Let Your glory be above all the earth.” Psalm 57:6 & 11

What Do I Want For Christmas? Day 360

What do I want for Christmas?

I want for all those who call themselves Christians to see God for who the Scriptures say He is, and not who they make him out to be by their own emotion, will, or personal design.  For in doing the latter they make God in their own image, which is a false worship.

The Scripture says,

In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. ” Genesis 1:1

“And God said, Let Us make man in our image, after our likeness…” 1:26a

“So God created man in His own image, in the image of God created He him; male and female created He them.”  1:27

 

Fire in Your Mouth

“Go ye up upon her walls, and destroy; but make not a full end: take away her battlements; for they are not the LORD’S. For the house of Israel and the house of Judah have dealt very treacherously against Me, saith the LORD. They have belied the LORD, and said, It is not He; neither shall evil come upon us; neither shall we see sword nor famine: and the prophets shall become wind, and the word is not in them: thus shall it be done unto them. Wherefore thus saith the LORD God of hosts, Because ye speak this word, behold, I will make My words in thy mouth fire, and this people wood, and it shall devour them.” Jeremiah 5:10-14 (KJV)

It seems to be a trend among people today. If we hear a word contrary to what we believe a mass of people will lie about it and deny it. Even if it is true there is much lying and denial; especially if it is according to the word of our Lord and God.

The people of Jeremiah’s day; the people to whom he preached denied God. They lied about God. God had said that judgment was coming. The prophets of the people said, “There is no judgment coming. We are God’s people. The temple will stand forever.” God was telling the people the words of their prophets were going to fail, and fall to the ground.

GOD says through His prophet Jeremiah that judgment was going to come from the north from a foreign invader. The people denied it, and the prophets lied about it. It came just as God said it would.

To lie and deny does not make the truth untrue. No matter how hard you try to be positive about a negative truth; it is still true.

The people who were “Not the LORD’S” would call prophets of God the wind, and God says that His Word will not fail. They will be put to shame.

The Word of God is powerful, and shall not fail. Deny it all you want. Lie about God all you can; however the word will still stand, even after you fall, and perish. God will have His way even after your ways fail.

God has done all that is in His power to do to redeem to Himself a people who love Him. That redemption is provided through the cross of His Son Jesus Christ. Believe Him and live. Deny Him and perish. Your choice.

When Truth Has Fallen in the Street

“Therefore is judgment far from us, neither doth justice overtake us: we wait for light, but behold obscurity; for brightness, but we walk in darkness. We grope for the wall like the blind, and we grope as if we had no eyes: we stumble at noonday as in the night; we are in desolate places as dead men. We roar all like bears, and mourn sore like doves: we look for judgment, but there is none; for salvation, but it is far off from us. For our transgressions are multiplied before Thee, and our sins testify against us: for our transgressions are with us; and as for our iniquities, we know them; in transgressing and lying against the LORD, and departing away from our God, speaking oppression and revolt, conceiving and uttering from the heart words of falsehood. And judgment is turned away backward, and justice standeth afar off: for truth is fallen in the street, and equity cannot enter. Yea, truth faileth; and he that departeth from evil maketh himself a prey: and the LORD saw it, and it displeased him that there was no judgment.” Isaiah 59:9-15

There is a problem with being a prophet of God. One is that what ever he prophesies is what he will endure, receive and go through as well as the people he warns. Whether it is a prophecy for good; or a prophecy for judgment he will endure it as well.

The above verses are a confessional prayer/statement to the LORD, and to the nation. Note that Isaiah includes himself in the confession “Judgment [Justice] is far from us”, “but we walk in darkness”, and “we grope”, “we had no eyes”, “we stumble”. You get my point I am sure.

Even though the prophet had probably not committed these atrocities, these sins he includes himself in the array, because this was his nation, his people, and God had been offended by the sins of the people; the kings, princes, nobles and all.

Where we have sinned let us confess it and forsake it. Let us turn our backs on sin; not on God. Let us forsake evil and sin, not our God. Let us stand for truth, though it may be fallen in the street. Though we turn our backs on evil and sin; though we may become a prey because we do so. Let us do so.

“”If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:9

The cleansing means that we turn our backs on sin, to not live it in repetition.

In Darkness; There is Light

“And when they shall say unto you, Seek unto them that have familiar spirits, and unto wizards that peep, and that mutter: should not a people seek unto their God? For the living to the dead? To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them.” Isaiah 8:19-20 (KJV)

It seems that many of the people of God, the people of Israel were searching for answers in all the wrong places. Their hearts had grown hard and dull to the light of God’s Word, and His messengers the prophets, and the Law. They were seeking out “wizards” and “Necromancers” seeking a word for their future. This God has forbidden for His people (Leviticus 19:26; Deuteronomy 18:10-11). King Saul was guilty of the practice with the witch of Endor (1 Samuel 28:8-19), and due to his rebellion and pride he was killed in battle, along with Jonathan his son, the very next day.

There is no where the people of God; and Christians of today; need to go for answers, and the truth except to the Word of God. He has given His Word of truth in the Bible. It is found from Genesis 1 through Revelation 22.

Any man or woman who does not teach or preach according to what God has given us in His Word is not of God. There is no light in them. The message of the Word of God exalts the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. It is about Him. It is not about you. It is not about me. These things are written that all may know that He is the LORD of all the earth.

Any who speak not according to His Word; there is no light in them. They are in darkness. O perishing soul; come to the Father through the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ; God the Son, and the Son of God.

The Conclusion of the Matter

“Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep His commandments: for this is the whole duty of man. For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil.” Ecclesiastes 12:13-14

In reading the book of Ecclesiastes we find that the life of every individual has an introduction, a body, and a conclusion. The body of our lives includes many plots and sub-plots, and climaxes. Those climaxes are not the end, or conclusion of life. They are just another peak reached, then we do something different, more, or less adventure, etc..

From seeing things as vain in life; “vanity of vanities all is vanity” were Solomon’s words as he writes of his life’s adventure. He reaches the conclusion of the matter.

That conclusion is that only with God does life even matter.

The sole duty of man is not to live for oneself, but for God, and to glorify Him; to enjoy Him forever. He alone has made that possible.

We must remember that there is nothing hidden from God. In our era of time there are so many frightened that the government(s) of men have so much observation of our personal lives by means of video, video cameras, and satellite and by our computers. I think of that this way; I already have Someone who sees all that I do. He knows every thought I think. He sees everything I do. There is nothing that I do, no secret thing, that gets past Him; He is God. What do I have to fear from a government that is run amuck from God.

Jesus said,

“For there is nothing hid, which shall not be manifested; neither was any thing kept secret, but that it should come abroad.” Mark 4:22

We can be certain that nothing we do gets around God. We can also be certain that there is nothing that happens which surprises Him. The conclusion of the matter of life is found in knowing God and being known by Him.

When we have both, then we are assured of an eternal home with Him. That is made possible through the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ God’s only begotten Son.

My Foot, My Mouth, and My Sacrifice

“Keep thy foot when thou goest to the house of God, and be more ready to hear, than to give the sacrifice of fools: for they consider not that they do evil. Be not rash with thy mouth, and let not thine heart be hasty to utter any thing before God: for God is in heaven, and thou upon earth: therefore let thy words be few.” Ecclesiastes 5:1-2 (KJV)

Our feet are the means of our transportation. With them we walk about our homes. We walk to our automobiles. Some people who live near their place of employment walk to work, and we need feet to do such a thing, and such things. It is a good thing to have feet.

However, we must watch where we place them in order to walk safely, soundly, and securely. The thing is true in God things as well. As a matter of fact; for the Christian everything we do ought to be done with the thought of “Will this glorify the Lord?” and if it does not; it is not worth doing. Watch your feet when you go to the house of God. Be careful where you step, so that you do not harm your testimony; and so that you do not profane the name of our God.

Saul, the first king of Israel did not keep his foot. He boasted of his faith when he offered a sacrifice in disobedience to Samuel (1 Samuel 15 note verse 22). Sacrifice without obedience is blasphemy, and is sin. God has no pleasure in those who do all the right things for the wrong reasons.

The mouth is a thing often affected by the way the feet move, and where they go. To go to the house of God we should be silent when we are being taught, except in participating in discussion of the lesson, and on track.

God is not well pleased by sacrifices done in the wrong motive, nor words spoken that are contrary to one’s life (Isaiah 1:10-15). Any words we speak in the place of worship should be toward God; admiring, adoring, and worshipping Him. Otherwise they should be few.

As a Christian we need to realize that our bodies are the temple of the Lord (1 Corinthians 6:19-20); therefore we are to walk with Him wherever we go; whatever we do; to glorify Him; and

“Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.” Hebrews 10:25

We all need the fellowship of others; to encourage others in the faith; and for ourselves to hear from others and be encouraged, and strengthened in the faith.

Sunrises and Sunsets

“The sun also ariseth, and the sun goeth down, and hasteth to his place where he arose. The wind goeth toward the south, and turneth about unto the north; it whirleth about continually, and the wind returneth again according to his circuits. All the rivers run into the sea; yet the sea is not full; unto the place from whence the rivers come, thither they return again.” Ecclesiastes 1:5-7 (KJV)

Since the beginning of time on earth the sun has never failed to rise in the east, neither has it ever failed to set in the west. At least that is the terms men have used for millennials of time.

I have been on this earth for a short 22,217 days; and everyday the sun has risen and set. I have missed a few of those; at least in seeing them. Some days have been clouded over, but I have known that the sun did rise, and it did set. I love sunrises. For the past 15 years or so I have been up in the morning early enough to witness all of them. Maybe missing a few days sleeping in. Everyday the sun rises and sets it is a reminder that God’s Word is true.

Notice Solomon’s words of the wind; going south, then north, and whirling about. Wind can be ferocious and fearful. On May 22, 2011 much of the city of Joplin, Missouri was destroyed by a tornado. Our son and his wife lost their home in that storm. Thankfully they, nor their dogs had a scratch on them, even though they were in the house when the tornado hit.

Winds can be refreshing. Winds can be wild, twisting masses of terror. Winds can be a short gust which makes you wonder, “Where did that come from?”, and then nothing. Jesus said of the wind,

“The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.” John 3:8

One evening (July 20, 2015) I was mowing our front yard.  When I started the temperature was 100 degrees. I was about to take one last break from the heat; had pulled the mower into the shade on the east side of the house, when I looked and saw clouds moving in, then thunder and lightening. That is when I decided I better just go ahead and finish the mowing. I finished the mowing, got the mower into the shed, shut it off, and the rain began. Wow! Could not have planned it better myself.

The sun was shining, the wind was blowing, and the rain was pouring from the skies filled with lightening and thunder. God is so wonderful. His Son is so glorious. He is so worthy of our worship and praise.

All these things of God’s created order are reminders of God’s care. God’s care of His creation; His people, His world. Just as the order God gives this earth, and the Universe is sure; His love for you and me is sure. He loves us so much He sent His Son Jesus to die in our place for our sins.

He is sure. He is stedfast. He is faithful to do all that He has said He would do. Believe Him.  Trust Him.

Thanks, Mercy, and Great Wonders

“O give thanks unto the God of gods: for His mercy endureth for ever. O give thanks to the Lord of lords: for His mercy endureth for ever. To Him who alone doeth great wonders: for His mercy endureth for ever.” Psalm 136:2-4 (KJV)

I have a friend who when something happens, something is said that is surprising, or is questionable will say “Mercy”. I am tempted many times when I hear him say that to say “We need more of it”; or “That is from God”. I may have a time or two.

With the events taking place in our world today; a SCOTUS going AWAL from its foundings purpose; to interpret the law not legislate law; it is clear to me that the mercy of God abounds.

Take a look at the verses above: First of all we are to thank God, not our “Lucky stars”, but the God of gods; the One who is more awesome, powerful, and holds all things together; and we are to thank Him for His mercy, because it is enduring forever. Secondly, we are to thank Him because He is the Lord of lords, the Master of the masters, the Husband of the husbands, the Superior of the superiors; and His mercy endures forever. Thirdly, He is the One who does great wonders; I mean think about it, the only One, who does great wonders. No one can design, build, and create like He has done. Look at all the great wonders that are mentioned in this Psalm. Look at the Creation and the order within it; and thank Him, because His mercy endures forever.

Be thankful to God the LORD today, because His mercy is everlasting; He is faithful, and will continue to be faithful no matter what comes into our world, our nation, our town, our county, or our personal lives.

Thank Him because when He could have shown us wrath, He sent us His Son to die on the cross in our place. Now, what will you do with this information? Believe or throw it out?

Unaltered, Unbroken

“If his children forsake My law, and walk not in My judgments; if they break My statutes, and keep not My commandments; then will I visit their transgression with the rod, and their iniquity with stripes. Nevertheless My lovingkindness will I not utterly take from him, nor suffer My faithfulness to fail. My covenant will I not break, nor alter the thing that is gone out of My lips.” Psalm 89:30-34 (KJV)

The Psalm has much to do with God’s promises to the Davidic line of the kingdom of Israel. Written by Ethan the Ezrahite; possibly a Levitical singer mentioned in 1 Chronicles 6:43, and 15:17-19 (From the MacArthur Study Bible note on Psalm 89: Title).

One of the things that I have noticed in the study of Scripture over the years; that there is one thing that truly stands out; and that is that God loves His people, and receives us just as we are; but He loves us too much to leave us the way we are. That is why He chastises, disciplines, and corrects us.

No one of us would ever think or say that the discipline or chastisement of the LORD is a pleasant thing; no more than we would say that when our father took us out behind the wood shed that that was a pleasant thing. We learn from our Father’s chastisement; and we should be grateful for it.

Even though God chastens His children He will never forsake us. His covenant will not be broken, neither will the thing that has gone out of His lips be altered.

Something those who claim to be Christian and God’s people need to realize in our day. God, neither His Word, neither His covenant changes with the times or the seasons. He does not change to fit the culture; neither does His Word.

God’s word is sure, stedfast, relevant for the day, and it is still powerful; and every jot and tittle will be fulfilled (Matthew 5:18). Stand with God, and His Word; or fall for anything.

Being the Doorkeeper with God as Our Shield

“Behold, O God our shield, and look upon the face of Thine anointed. For a day in Thy courts is better than a thousand. I had rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God, than to dwell in the tents of wickedness. For the LORD God is a sun and shield: the LORD will give grace and glory: no good thing will He withhold from them that walk uprightly. O LORD of hosts, blessed is the man that trusteth in Thee.” Psalm 84:9-12 (KJV)

This Psalm was written for the “sons of Korah” (Numbers 16). Korah was a leader of rebellion against Moses and Aaron, along with Dathan and Abiram. Because of their rebellion they perished and much of their families also.

The Psalmist writes to those sons of Korah who did not participate in the rebellion. God is a shield to all those who trust in Him. The “shield” is also the king whom God has anointed.

Note that the Psalmist is saying that one day as a doorkeeper in the house of God is better than a thousand days in the tents of wickedness; even if with the wicked you are given the best amenities, and made wealthy by it.

God, the LORD, is our sun and shield; our light, our protector. It matters not what the world or the SCOTUS throws at us. The LORD of the Universe still reigns, His laws, and institutions are still up and going. What He said in Genesis 1 – Revelation 22 still stands.

“Blessed is the man [the individual] that trusteth in Thee”. The trust we show in YOU, O Lord is by believing your word. When we turn our backs against Your word, we turn our backs on You.

Desires of the Heart

“So they did eat, and were well filled: for He gave them their own desire; they were not estranged from their lust. But while their meat was yet in their mouths, the wrath of God came upon them, and slew the fattest of them, and smote down the chosen men of Israel. For all this they sinned still, and believed not for His wondrous works.” Psalm 78:29-32 (KJV)

Asaph is again the Psalmist of this song. This Psalm is a reminder of the wilderness journeys of Israel, and how God delivered them out of Egypt; then, to drive Egypt out of them.

God had provided the people with “manna” meaning “What is it?” and they were complaining and calling on Moses to lead them back to Egypt. How fickle and foolish we people can be sometimes; yes even saved, even delivered people.

You can read the story that is being sung by Asaph in Numbers 11.

A couple questions: Would you prefer that God gave you all the desires of your own heart? or: Would you prefer that God gave you His desires and placed them in your heart and mind?

The Psalmist points out to us that God “gave them their own desire”; and that was not a good option for them. We see later that they gorged themselves, many became sick and perished. They named the place “Kibrothhattaavah” which means “Graves of Craving” (Numbers 11:34). The Psalmist of Psalm 106 states,

“And He gave them their request; but sent leanness into their soul.” Psalm 106:15

Go ahead and complain about your life situation. Go ahead, and ask God for a big fancy home, big nice car, lots of money in the bank, great land holdings; and He may give it to you.

Myself I have chosen to pray for what He desires for my life. I pray that is what you have determined as well. “Delight thyself also in the LORD; and He shall give thee the desires of your heart” (Psalm 37:4). Note that he does not say “things you desire”, but rather, “desires”.

When God, through Jesus Christ, is your desire there will be peace, rest and safety.

How Are Your Thoughts and Attitude?

“Thy way, O God, is in the sanctuary: who is so great a God as our God? Thou art the God that doest wonders: Thou hast declared Thy strength among the people. Thou hast with Thine arm redeemed Thy people, the sons of Jacob and Joseph. Selah.” Psalm 77:13-15 (KJV)

This Psalmist, Asaph, has begun the Psalm feeling a bit sorry for himself. His thoughts are on his own life situation, and he is addressing the LORD, but only about his aches and pains of heart and soul. That is the place we all need to take them; but when we have encountered God those thoughts, attitudes will perish.

You alone are in charge of your attitude. It begins with your thoughts. If you are driving to work on one of these busy freeways in the cities, and someone rudely cuts you off; when the traffic is moving quite well; you say, “That affects my attitude”; but does it? It can. It is however your personal responsibility to redirect your thinking toward a different attitude.

The Psalmist began with sorrow, and basically a pity party with God; but he ended up focusing on the LORD; and he saw things completely different.

Asaph began to focus his thoughts on the strength of God; His deliverance of Israel from Egypt, the crossing of the Red Sea; and he saw the awesome, power and glory of God. In the verses ending this Psalm, the Psalmist describes the sea as being fearful of the LORD and parting at His appearance. He describes thunder, lightening, and trembling and shaking of the earth.

Oh my; when we see the power and glory of God all our problems melt away. Our thinking and our attitudes will reflect the glory of the LORD. All this begins with having a personal encounter with God through His Son Jesus. There is no other way (John 14:6). There is only one cross, one Saviour, one resurrected Lord, and one returning Lord of lords and King of kings. His name is Jesus.

So what is your problem today?

GOD Does Not Turn Away My Prayer

“If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me: but verily God hath heard me; He hath attended to the voice of my prayer. Blessed be God, which hath not turned away my prayer, nor His mercy from me.” Psalm 66:18-20 (KJV)

Have you ever noticed a time when it seems as though you are not getting through to God, as you pray? It just seems to feel as though your prayers are not even getting past the ceiling? That is; should I say; a painful, sorrowful feeling.

When God hears our prayer it is due solely to His mercy and grace. He hears your prayer, my prayer every time we pray. Yet, it seems as though He does not.

Part of the problem is addressed by the Psalmist when he writes, “If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me…” To “regard iniquity” is to hold on to it; refusing to let it go; even to the point of rejecting God, His word and His direction for our lives.

There are things which is within the realm of “regarding iniquity” which hinders our prayers. One is for the husband not to treat his wife well (1 Peter 3:7), and I am almost certain that that would include the wife not treating her husband well. Another thing is praying with lustful desire which would include greed for things (James 4:3).

The prayers God hears are those we pray in His name. Jesus said, “What things so ever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them.” (Mark 11:24). Also, “If ye abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you.” John 15:7. When we have received the change which comes with receiving Christ Jesus as our Lord and Saviour our heart’s desire changes too. We desire what God desire, and so pray accordingly “In His name”.

Jesus said, “And whatsoever ye shall ask in My name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If ye shall ask any thing in My name, I will do it.” John 14:13-14

God hears the prayer of His people whose hearts are directed toward His heart by the cross of Jesus Christ.

The Land is GOD’S to Give as He Pleases

“God hath spoken in His holiness; I will rejoice, I will divide Shechem, and mete out the valley of Succoth. Gilead is Mine, and Manasseh is Mine; Ephraim also is the strength of Mine head; Judah is My lawgiver; Moab is My washpot; over Edom will I cast out My shoe: Philistia, triumph thou because of Me.” Psalm 60:6-8 (KJV)

One of the things people and nations need to understand is that God is the owner of all lands, and distributes those lands as He sees fit.

The land of Canaan was promised to Abraham, and His children through Isaac the promised son. He gave the land of Canaan plus land on the east side of Jordan to the people of promise.

Down through the ages there is still contention over that land. It is simply because the people will not submit to God’s ownership and division of that land. If the people would submit to God’s ownership, division of that land, and realize we are all only stewards of where we dwell; then there could be peace.

The Psalmist speaking the words of God notes this division. Shechem and Succoth are land on the east side of Jordan, and were given to two and one half tribes of Israel, because of their request for it (Numbers 32:1-5). Gilead, Manasseh, Ephraim, and Judah are God’s people. God says, “Gilead is Mine.” He also says, “Manasseh is Mine”; and “Ephraim is the helmet for My head” (NKJV), and “Judah is My lawgiver”.

To think about “Moab is My washpot” we are the surrounding enemy nations; along with Edom, and Philistia. We might consider Moab as the “washpot” in that when Israel strayed God uses them to discipline, chastise Israel for their waywardness.

Do we as Christians today understand that all God has given in our hand, under our feet, even on our back are His; and we are uniquely His stewards to care, and work it for His glory? The land is His and everything on it.

When we know God through His Son Jesus Christ we will understand this and will direct our lives accordingly. We will love the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. We will love the Word of God, we will hear it and do what He says. When we fail, or fall we will trust Him to pick us back up; and we will continue on the path of holiness.

Greatness of the One

“I will praise Thee, O Lord, among the people: I will sing unto Thee among the nations. For Thy mercy is great unto the heavens, and Thy truth unto the clouds. Be Thou exalted, O God, above the heavens: let Thy glory be above all the earth.” Psalm 57:9-11 (KJV)

The Psalmist David was hiding from King Saul in a cave when he wrote this Psalm; or possibly shortly there after. You can see by this Psalm that he was still trusting in the LORD his God.

He was praising the Lord, and he would praise Him among the people of his nation. He would sing unto Him among the Nations of the world around him.

He recognized the greatness of the mercy of God, and proclaimed it. He bragged about God. We can, and we get to brag about His greatness as well; when we know Him.

The LORD God is exalted above all the earth. He is the most glorious of all. Even the stars in their astrological signs cannot hold candle, or light to the glory of their creator. Above the heavens [stars, planets, etc]; above the earth; that is the Lord our God.

He came as a Man.  His name is Jesus.  He bled and died on the cross for our sins, was buried, and He rose again.  He is returning some day soon.  Believe Him. Trust Him with your whole being.  There is no life apart from Him.  He is the One who holds all things together (John 1:3;  Colossians 1:17).

Spend time today in contemplation of the greatness of the One who is above all things; and exalt Him.