The Hearing and The Understanding

“And some believed the things which were spoken, and some believed not.
And when they agreed not among themselves, they departed, after that Paul had spoken one word, ‘Well spake the Holy Ghost by Esaias the prophet unto our fathers, saying, ‘Go unto this people, and say, Hearing ye shall hear, and shall not understand; and seeing ye shall see, and not perceive: for the heart of this people is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes have they closed; lest they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them.’
‘Be it known therefore unto you, that the salvation of God is sent unto the Gentiles, and they will hear it.'” Acts 28:24-28 (KJB)

Standing before the Jewish leaders in Rome Paul tells them of Jesus Christ and His death, burial, and resurrection.  Some heard and believed.  Many of them turned away from the truth and life to remain in lies and death.

The apostle reminds them of the words of Isaiah in chapter six of that prophecy, and Isaiah’s call.  The prophet was told that he would tell the people of the time what God said, but they would not hear and believe. However, he was to be faithful in preaching what God said, no matter what.

It is evident to me that there is basically no difference in the people of the eighth century B.C. and the people of this twenty first century.  There are people in every era of time who do not like the truth.  Many want to continue doing things their way, in their time; or maybe not.  They have the mentality, “Do not mix God/religion with life.  It causes problems”.

God, His word, and His people have always been against sin.  You have the choice of believing God and His word or of going, continuing down your slippery slope to death and eternal judgment

I pray you will hear and understand. I pray your eyes will be opened to see the truth of the true identity of Jesus the Christ, the Son of God, God the Son; who died on the cross for our sins, was buried, and He rose again.  He is alive.

Believe Him.

He Read From the Prophet Isaiah

“And the angel of the Lord spake unto Philip, saying, ‘Arise, and go toward the south unto the way that goeth down from Jerusalem unto Gaza, which is desert.’  And he arose and went: and, behold, a man of Ethiopia, an eunuch of great authority under Candace queen of the Ethiopians, who had the charge of all her treasure, and had come to Jerusalem for to worship, was returning, and sitting in his chariot read Esaias the prophet.
Then the Spirit said unto Philip, ‘Go near, and join thyself to this chariot.’  And Philip ran thither to and heard him read the prophet Esaias, and said, ‘Understandest thou what thou readest?’  And he said, ‘How can I, except some man should guide me?’ And he desired Philip that he would come up and sit with him.
The place of the Scripture which he read was this, ‘He was led as a sheep to the slaughter; and like a lamb dumb before his shearer, so opened He not His mouth: in His humiliation His judgment was taken away: and who shall declare His generation? For His life is taken from the earth.’
And the eunuch answered Philip, and said, ‘I pray thee, of whom speaketh the prophet this of himself, or of some other man?’  Then Philip opened his mouth, and began at the same Scripture, and preached unto him Jesus.
And as they went on their way, they came unto a certain water: and the eunuch said, ‘See, here is water; what doth hinder me to be baptized?’  And Philip said, ‘If thou believest with all thine heart, thou mayest.’ And he answered and said, ‘I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.’  And he commanded the chariot to stand still: and they went down both into the water, both Philip and the eunuch; and he baptized him.
And when they were come up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord caught away Philip, that the eunuch saw him no more: and he went on his way rejoicing.  But Philip was found at Azotus: and passing through he preached in all the cities, till he came to Caesarea.”  Acts 8:26-40  (KJB)

Words of the Prophets – Isaiah (2)

All Nations Will Flow Unto It

“The word that Isaiah the son of Amoz saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem. And it shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain of the LORD’S house shall be established in the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills; and all nations shall flow unto it. And many people shall go and say, ‘Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob; and He will teach us of His ways, and we will walk in His paths.’ For out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem.
And He shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more.
O house of Jacob, come ye, and let us walk in the light of the LORD.”  Isaiah 2:1-5  (KJB)

Words of the Prophets – Isaiah

Protection Removed

“Now will I sing to my wellbeloved a song of my beloved touching his vineyard. My wellbeloved hath a vineyard in a very fruitful hill:  And He fenced it, and gathered out the stones thereof, and planted it with the choicest vine, and built a tower in the midst of it, and also made a winepress therein: and He looked that it should bring forth grapes, and it brought forth wild grapes.  And now, O inhabitants of Jerusalem, and men of Judah, judge, I pray you, betwixt Me and My vineyard.  What could have been done more to My vineyard, that I have not done in it? Wherefore, when I looked that it should bring forth grapes, brought it forth wild grapes?  And now go to; I will tell you what I will do to My vineyard: I will take away the hedge thereof, and it shall be eaten up; and break down the wall thereof, and it shall be trodden down:  And I will lay it waste: it shall not be pruned, nor digged; but there shall come up briers and thorns: I will also command the clouds that they rain no rain upon it.  For the vineyard of the LORD of hosts is the house of Israel, and the men of Judah His pleasant plant: and He looked for judgment, but behold oppression; for righteousness, but behold a cry.” Isaiah 5:1-7 (KJV)

The Prophecy of Our Lord’s Birth

THE BIRTH FORETOLD

Isaiah 7:1-14

OUTLINE –

I. JUDAH/JERUSALEM WAS UNDER SEIGE, AND GREAT THREAT FROM THE SYRIANS WITH SUPPORT FROM EPHRAIM/ISRAEL (vv. 1-2)

II. GOD SENT ISAIAH TO AHAZ, THE GRANDSON OF UZZIAH TO COMFORT AND ENCOURAGE HIM CONCERNING THE TERRORISM AT THEIR GATES (vv. 3-7).

III. GOD’S WORDS CONCERNING THOSE WHO RISE UP AGAINST THE RIGHTEOUS REMNANT (vv. 8-9).

IV. GOD GIVES A SIGN, DESPITE THE ARROGANCE AND UNWILLINGNESS TO OBEY FROM AHAZ; OF THE GOD-MAN WHO WOULD COME BY WAY OF A VIRGIN (vv. 10-16),

INTRODUCTION –

I. Living In An Affluent Society As We Do; We Often Do Not Realize The Fears and Battles Which Others In the World Are Going Through; Yet, There Are Many In Our Own Country Which Suffer Due To Hideous Things, Threats, Sickness, and Other Things.

II. Some People Are Asking “Why Doesn’t God Intervene?”, and The Answer To That Is; He Has and Presently Is.

III. The Word Of God Gives Us The Way Of Life and the Way Of Faith, Comfort, Encouragement, and We All Need It In Our Lives.

IV. God Came Down and Dwelt Among Us, and He Is Still With Us.

Even though this is the Christmas season; the season, the time of the year when we remember our Lord’s birth. Those who are not suffering from delusion will readily admit that these are not pleasant times, but let’s not be disheartened, discouraged or downheartedd. Remember, Jesus, the one whose birth we celebrate is Lord over all.

Christmas is about God. It is about God sending His Son, born of a virgin, born to die for the sins of the world.

I. THESE MAY BE DAYS OF SEIGE FROM THE ENEMY AND DARK FORCES FROM EVERY SIDE, AND THESE CAN CAUSE GREAT FEAR (vv. 1-2).

A. Ahaz was surrounded by the trouble of his Sister Nation, and the Syrians, so we may be as well, surrounded by an enemy who is set to destroy us and our testimony for Christ.

B. When we are not right with God we will be fearful; if we are right with God, having our sins confessed and obeying His call and direction for our lives, then, we need not fear, nor will we be fearful.

Someone once said, “If we fear God; we need fear nothing else”.

II. GOD HAS SENT HIS MESSENGER TO GIVE US COMFORT AND ENCOURAGEMENT FOR FACING THE ENEMY WHICH TRIES SO HARD TO DETRACT US AND GET US AWAY FROM GOD AND HIS PLAN FOR OUR LIVES (vv. 3-7).

A. Every time we are afraid God sends a messenger by way of the Holy Spirit; the message is found in God’s Word.

B. God’s messenger will speak a relevant message for the time and place.

1. Notice, that God sent ‘Shearjashub’ with Isaiah as a message of comfort – his name means, “A remnant shall return”.

2. The land of Judah would not be forgotten by God – that promise is true of all those who are in the faith of the Lord Jesus.

C. The greatest messenger of all is God’s Son Jesus Christ.

The Psalmist has written, “What time I am afraid, I will trust in Thee.” (Ps. 56:3). And, in verse eleven he wrote, “In God have I put my trust: I will not be afraid what man can do unto me.”

D. Be assured; the enemy of our peace shall not prevail – Jesus Christ won the victory.

1. These “Smoking firebrands” may be hot, but they are going to burn out and burn up, and be nothing but ash.

III. GOD’S WORD IS HERE FOR OUR INSTRUCTION, REBUKE, CORRECTION, INSPIRATION, AND SPIRITUAL GROWTH TO MATURITY IN JESUS CHRIST (vv. 8-9).

A. God is in control of the matters of our lives; so let’s not let our troubles detract us from the will of God.

B. God’s Word is the means by which we can resist the lies, snares, pits, and deceit of the enemy.

1. The Word of God, with the Spirit of God gets us to the place God wants us when we hear and obey.

2. By the Word of God we know the afflictions are often, if not always, for our benefit.

“Before I was afflicted I went astray: but now have I kept Thy Word” (Ps. 119:67).

“It is good for me that I have been afflicted; that I might learn Thy statutes” (Ps. 119:71).

C. Those who will not take heed to God and His Word will certainly be without help (v. 9b).

IV. FOR US GOD HAS GIVEN US THE SIGN OF THE GOD-MAN WHO WAS BORN OF A VIRGIN IN THE STABLE OF BETHLEHEM (vv. 10 – 16).

A. Like Ahaz, some do not want a sign from God, because it would humble them, and cause them to realize their weaknesses, and God’s strength.

B. Despite the unwillingness of some to request a sign, God has given us one anyway.

1. That sign is the birth of the God-man Jesus Christ to the virgin mother who was willing to risk her reputation, and future marriage, and possibly her own life, to bring the Son of God to earth to pay the price for the sins of mankind, and redeem us unto God.

2. That sign, even now, causes controversy in the hearts of many who profess Christ as their Savior.

C. The unwillingness does not negate the fact, though, it strengthens it.

1. He was born of the woman – a virgin – who had no seed.

2. He could not have had a human father, the sinful seed comes from the man.

3. He was born of the seed of God, thus, having no sin, and fully qualified to die for mankind’s sin and bring reconciliation between God and mankind.

D. This prophecy was fulfilled in the following verses,

“Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost. Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not willing to make her a publick example, was minded to put her away privily. But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost. And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins. Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us. 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 1:18-25

“And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus, that all the world should be taxed. (And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was governor of Syria.) And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city. And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David:) To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child. And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered. And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.” Luke 2:1-7.

SUMMARY –

I. LOOK TO THE MESSENGER OF GOD’S WORD – AS JEREMIAH SAID, ‘THERE IS A WORD FROM THE LORD”.

II. LOOK TO THE SIGN WHICH HAS BEEN GIVEN US – THE SIGN OF HIS VIRGIN BIRTH AND THE SIGN OF HIS CROSS.

III. TRUST GOD’S WORD WITH THE SPIRIT OF GOD TO GUIDE YOU, SECURE YOU, GIVE YOU PEACE IN THE MIDST OF ATTACKS AND AFFLICTION.

IV. THERE ARE ACTUALLY THREE SIGNS GOD HAS GIVEN US FOR ASSURANCE AND PEACE – 1) THE VIRGIN BIRTH OF CHRIST; 2) CHRIST’S DEATH ON THE CROSS; 3) AND THE RESURRECTION FROM THE DEAD.

V. CAN YOU TRUST SUCH A ONE AS THIS JESUS? DEFFINITELY.

-Tim A. Blankenship

Heart or Lip?

It is a sad thing when the heart of God’s people grow cold toward Him, His word, His ways, His Son Jesus, and His Spirit.  That was a very prominent thing in the land of Israel and Judah.  They had grown away from God.  Still maintaining their worship ritual, without  heart for God; giving Him only “Lip service”, but their hearts were far from Him.  It would do Christians of 2017 and beyond to hear the prophets of the Old Testament, because these words apply to all God’s people when it comes to our worship, and devotion to Him.  Now, hear the prophet Isaiah…

Wherefore the Lord said, Forasmuch as this people draw near Me with their mouth, and with their lips do honour Me, but have removed their heart far from Me, and their fear toward Me is taught by the precept of men: therefore, behold, I will proceed to do a marvellous work among this people, even a marvellous work and a wonder: for the wisdom of their wise men shall perish, and the understanding of their prudent men shall be hid. Woe unto them that seek deep to hide their counsel from the LORD, and their works are in the dark, and they say, Who seeth us? And who knoweth us? Surely your turning of things upside down shall be esteemed as the potter’s clay: for shall the work say of him that made it, He made me not? Or shall the thing framed say of him that framed it, He had no understanding? Isaiah 29:13-16 (KJV)

For Christians one of  the easiest things to do is stray.  Stray away from time with God, and you will begin straying away from fellowship with His people, and worshiping together.  You will stray away from prayer. When that happens you will get into sin, that you thought you would never be part of.  Then, the Lord does a work in your life; you might call it a trouble, trial, even a sorrow so deep it causes grief and pain of heart; God is getting your attention; asking the question, “Whom or what do you trust?”  Sometimes these trials may come when you are walking with God.  Maybe to check your faith.  Remember Job.

Those who pay “Lip service” with out any heart for God are those to whom Jesus spoke of…

Not every one that saith unto Me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of My Father which is in heaven. Many will say to Me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Thy name? And in Thy name have cast out devils? And in Thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from Me, ye that work iniquity. Matthew 7:21-23

I fear that there are far too many people who are boasting of a relationship with God that they do not have. You may be one.  You claim to be Christian, but you only pick up your Bible on the way out the door for worship or Bible study.  The rest of the week you give no thought to God, His Son or His word.  You live your life, your way, and stomp on all who get in your way.

By the work and grace of God, when you are God’s He will always bring you back to Himself.  To love Him with all your heart, soul, mind and strength; and to love your neighbor as yourself. None of us can love God except through the cross of Jesus Christ the Son of God, God the Son.  He is the one who spoke those words in red above, and though not in red, He spoke through the prophet Isaiah the words of Isaiah.

If you call yourself “Christian”, then stop just giving Him “Lip service” and give Him your heart.  Jesus also said,,,

O generation of vipers, how can ye, being evil, speak good things? For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh. Matthew 12:34

A good man out of the good treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is evil: for of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaketh. Luke 6:45

What is in your heart?

 

Christmas Day Twenty and Six

What do I want for Christmas today?

I want everyone to know that every word God has spoken will come to pass; that it will be fulfilled just as He spoke it; than every word He has spoken has already came to pass, is coming to pass right now, and/or will come to pass later; to know that not one word will fail; that you might repent of your sins, and believe in the One whom He has sent – that is Jesus Christ the Son of God, God the Son.

“Seek ye out of the book of the LORD, and read: no one of these shall fail, none shall want her mate: for My mouth it hath commanded, and His Spirit it hath gathered them.” Isaiah 34:16 (KJV)

Christmas Day Thirty and One

What do I want for Christmas today?

I want my trust in the LORD to grow everyday, and live so that others may see my faith in Him; to trust Him in the thick and the thin; the good and the bad; when I am physically weak and when I am physically strong; when I am rich and when I am poor to glorify His name.

“Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and not be afraid: for the LORD JEHOVAH is my strength and my song; He also is become my salvation.” Isaiah 12:2 (KJV)

Just a word of explanation concerning having no post yesterday (Thanksgiving Day):  I was in the office prepared to do one, but my internet was as slow as thick molasses, and would not even load a page; so the internet was shut off all day long.

It was still slow today, but fast enough to load pages.  I am blessed to be able to do this and pray others are blessed by the Word of God.  I pray you all had a glorious, wonderful, and Blessed Thanksgiving Day; and that the thanks to the Lord will continue through to next Thanksgiving.

Christmas Day Thirty and Six

What do I want for Christmas today?

I want to cease to do evil, to learn to do good, seek justice, rebuke oppressors, defend the fatherless, and plead for widows; and ask that all of us as Christians stand by these words through our Lord Jesus Christ; and God forgive when we have failed to do so.

“Wash yourselves, make yourselves clean; Put away the evil of your doings from before My eyes. Cease to do evil, Learn to do good; Seek justice, Rebuke the oppressor; Defend the fatherless, Plead for the widow.” Isaiah 1:16-17 (NKJV)

Prophets Speak – Christmas Day One Hundred Forty and Seven

“For, behold, I create new heavens and a new earth: and the former shall not be remembered, nor come into mind. But be ye glad and rejoice for ever in that which I create: for, behold, I create Jerusalem a rejoicing, and her people a joy. And I will rejoice in Jerusalem, and joy in My people: and the voice of weeping shall be no more heard in her, nor the voice of crying.” Isaiah 65:17-19 (KJV)

What do I want for Christmas today?

I want you and the world to know the One who is, and will create new heavens and a new earth; who is able to make your life brand new, forgiving all your sin, and making you clean and more whole than you have ever been; I want you to know that He has done that through sending His Son Jesus Christ, to die on the cross, was buried, and He rose again, to be ready for His second coming; and of that time we do not know, but is coming, and will provide us a place with no more weeping or crying.

Prophets Speak – Christmas Day One Hundred Forty and Eight

“And judgment is turned away backward, and justice stands afar off: for truth is fallen in the street, and equity cannot enter. Yea, truth fails; and he that departs from evil makes himself a prey: and the LORD saw it, and it displeased Him that there was no judgment.” Isaiah 59:14-15 (KJV)

The above verses are a part of Isaiah’s prayer confessing the sins of God’s people, and they had forsaken truth; which the prophet was confessing as their sin as well.

What do I want for Christmas today?

For courage in the midst of evil and wickedness; to stand faithful to God and His Word no matter what the wicked ones may do; even if it means my life; to always remember that God’s Word is the truth, even when others forsake it, trample it under feet,  deny it, or twist it; God’s Word is sure; and every word of it will be fulfilled just as He has spoken it.

Prophets Speak – Christmas Day One Hundred Forty and Nine

“For thus says the High and Lofty One that inhabits eternity, whose name is Holy; ‘I dwell in the high and holy place, with him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones. For I will not contend for ever, neither will I be always wroth: for the spirit should fail before Me, and the souls which I have made. For the iniquity of his covetousness was I wroth, and smote him: I hid Me, and was wroth, and he went on frowardly in the way of his heart. I have seen his ways, and will heal him: I will lead him also, and restore comforts unto him and to his mourners.'” Isaiah 57:15-18 (KJV)

What do I want for Christmas today?

To always remember, to recognize the One who alone, is the High and Lofty One who inhabits eternity; and that He inhabits it with those who are of a humble and contrite spirit, and who do not exalt themselves, or politics, or parties, or platforms over Him; I want the world to know this One who loved all the fallen human race so much He sent, He gave His only Son, that whoever will believe on Him will not perish, but have eternal life, and inhabit eternity with Him.

Prophets Speak – Christmas Day 150

“Fear not; for you shall not be ashamed: neither be you confounded; for you shall not be put to shame: for you shall forget the shame of your youth, and shall not remember the reproach of your widowhood any more. For your Maker is your husband; the LORD of hosts is His name; and your Redeemer the Holy One of Israel; The God of the whole earth shall He be called. For the LORD has called you as a woman forsaken and grieved in spirit, and a wife of youth, when you was refused, says your God. For a small moment have I forsaken you; but with great mercies will I gather you. In a little wrath I hid My face from you for a moment; but with everlasting kindness will I have mercy on you, says the LORD your Redeemer.” Isaiah 54:4-8 (KJV)

What do I want for Christmas?

I want to daily rest in the arms of the Maker who is loving, merciful, forgiving GOD of grace; and do know that He is everlasting, His love is everlasting, and though I may at times be unfaithful to Him, He is always faithful to me, and to all who have called on His name; that He is my Redeemer.

Prophets Speak – Christmas Day One Hundred Fifty and One

“For My name’s sake I will defer My anger, and for My praise I will restrain it from you, so that I do not cut you off. Behold, I have refined you, but not as silver; I have tested you in the furnace of affliction. For My own sake, for My own sake, I will do it; for how should My name be profaned? And I will not give My glory to another.” Isaiah 48:9-11 (NKJV)

What do I want for Christmas?

Knowing from Scriptures that GOD is a loving, gracious, yet holy, righteous, and unchanging God; I want to always trust that He has me in His hands, protecting, caring, correcting, disciplining, and guiding me in His ways; and not for my sake, but solely for His name’s sake.

Prophets Speak – Christmas Day One Hundred Fifty and Two

“Look to Me, and be saved, all you ends of the earth! For I am God, and there is no other. I have sworn by Myself; the word has gone out of My mouth in righteousness, and shall not return, that to Me every knee shall bow, every tongue shall take an oath…” Isaiah 45:22-23 (NKJV)

What do I want for Christmas?

Seeing how God has spoken His Word, and that not one word He has spoken will ever fail; but all will be fulfilled, just as He has said; I want to live with His Word in my heart, and mind, and seen in my hands and my feet as I live for Him; so that others around me might see Him at work in me; so that they might have the Word of God – the Living Word, who is Jesus the Christ, the Son of God, and God the Son – empowering, protecting, loving, and God being glorified in all who will call on His name.

Prophets Speak – Christmas Day One Hundred Fifty and Three

“Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, Yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.’” Isaiah 41:10 (NKJV)

To deny that there are things which would make us fearful is a frivolous way of dealing with life.  To continually live with crippling fear is, well, crippling, and hinders us from accomplishing great things.

To deny the truth of evil, and decay is in fact deceit, self deceit, and a lie.

What do I want for Christmas?

As a born again, blood bought child of the King; I want to live knowing that God is always with me; that I will not be afraid in this wicked world; that I will be strengthened in the Lord, daily, knowing that He will help me in every trial, trouble, and situation of my life, my home, family, Church, Nation and the world; and that He upholds me with His righteous right hand.

Prophets Speak – Christmas Day One Hundred Fifty and Four

““O LORD of hosts, God of Israel, the One who dwells between the cherubim, You are God, You alone, of all the kingdoms of the earth. You have made heaven and earth. Incline Your ear, O LORD, and hear; open Your eyes, O LORD, and see; and hear all the words of Sennacherib, which he has sent to reproach the living God. Truly, LORD, the kings of Assyria have laid waste all the nations and their lands, and have cast their gods into the fire; for they were not gods, but the work of men’s hands—wood and stone. Therefore they destroyed them. Now therefore, O LORD our God, save us from his hand, that all the kingdoms of the earth may know that You are the LORD, You alone.”” Isaiah 37:16-20 (NKJV)

The verses above speaks of what godly leaders do when their people and nation are threatened, by a supposedly invincible enemy.

What do I want for Christmas?

I want a godly leader for our nation – the United States of America – one who is not afraid to pray in the midst of chaos, and attacks for enemy forces, one who will live before God and the people not with empty words of “faith”, but with conviction, and believing God (Not politics, and policies) is our only hope for deliverance, and influence in the world.

Prophets Speak – Christmas Day One Hundred Fifty and Five

“Seek ye out of the book of the LORD, and read: no one of these shall fail, none shall want her mate: for My mouth it hath commanded, and His Spirit it hath gathered them. And He hath cast the lot for them, and His hand hath divided it unto them by line: they shall possess it for ever, from generation to generation shall they dwell therein.” Isaiah 34:16-17 (KJV)

There are many who say they want to hear God speak.  There is only one sure way to hear God speak.  He has given us His written Word, and sent us His Son who is the Living Word.  If you will hear His written Word – the Bible – you will hear His Living Word – Jesus.

What do I want for Christmas?

I want to always hear the “Book of the LORD”, to know His truth, and to read, and to do them with all my heart, soul, mind and strength; and that my walk with God would be a light to all who see Him in me.

Prophets Speak – Christmas Day One Hundred Fifty and Six

“Therefore the LORD will wait, that He may be gracious to you; and therefore He will be exalted, that He may have mercy on you. For the LORD is a God of justice; Blessed are all those who wait for Him.” Isaiah 30:18 (NKJV)

What do I want for Christmas?

I want to trust in the LORD, and to daily wait patiently upon Him, because in His mercy and grace He tarries, He waits for me, and for all who trust, who wait upon Him.

To “Wait on the LORD”  does not mean we sit idly by on some mountain top doing nothing; but that we keep on trusting Him, living our daily lives under the direction, and guidance and filling and power of His Spirit.

Prophets Speak – Christmas Day One Hundred Fifty and Seven

“The way of the just is uprightness; O Most Upright, You weigh the path of the just. Yes, in the way of Your judgments, O LORD, we have waited for You; the desire of our soul is for Your name and for the remembrance of You. With my soul I have desired You in the night, yes, by my spirit within me I will seek You early; for when Your judgments are in the earth, the inhabitants of the world will learn righteousness.” Isaiah 26:7-9 (NKJV)

What do I want for Christmas?

Since the Word of God is the revelation, to us, of God, His grace, His love, His mercy, His justice, and equity; I want to always be in accord and agreement with God that I might always be on that path of justness, and equity with all people, but never falter in the way of God’s Word – the truth.

Jesus Christ is the Way, the Truth, and the Life (John 14:6).

Prophets Speak – Christmas Day One Hundred Fifty and Eight

“In that day Israel will be one of three with Egypt and Assyria—a blessing in the midst of the land, whom the LORD of hosts shall bless, saying, “Blessed is Egypt My people, and Assyria the work of My hands, and Israel My inheritance.” Isaiah 19:24-25 (NKJV)

These verses, are a yet to be fulfilled prophecy of the prophet Isaiah.

What do I want for Christmas?

Since the nations mentioned (Egypt and Assyria along with Israel) I want for the people of these nations to come to know the GOD of Israel, and to see the work and power of Christ Jesus on the cross to redeem all who will believe on Him;  and I want you to understand and know the One who has purchased the redemption of all who will call on His name (Romans 10:13).

Jesus Christ the Son of God, God the Son is the only way of peace in the Middle East and the world.

Prophets Speak – Christmas Day One Hundred Fifty and Nine

“In that day a man will look to his Maker,
And his eyes will have respect for the Holy One of Israel.
He will not look to the altars,
The work of his hands;
He will not respect what his fingers have made,
Nor the wooden images nor the incense altars.” Isaiah 17:7-8 (NKJV)

This is the second “In that day” which is written in the Prophet’s prophecy; of chapter 17.  What day?  Following the judgment that is to come upon them.

What do I want for Christmas?

I want to be always mindful of the grace, love and mercy of God; and I want all to know that the love of God, and His judgment are not separate; I want you to know today, that one day you will look upon your Maker, and realize all the things of man’s making are vain, and of no eternal value; I want you to know your Maker today – He is Jesus (See John 1:1-5, 14).

Prophets Speak – Christmas Day 160

“And in that day shall ye say, Praise the LORD, call upon His name, declare His doings among the people, make mention that His name is exalted. Sing unto the LORD; for He hath done excellent things: this is known in all the earth. Cry out and shout, thou inhabitant of Zion: for great is the Holy One of Israel in the midst of thee.” Isaiah 12:4-6 (KJV)

What do I want for Christmas?

Today I want to always see God as the One and only who is worthy of all my praise, and worship; I want to boast of Him, His power, His works, His grace, His love, His Sovereignty, His presence…; I want to always see that He  has done the “Excellent things” that are known in all the earth; and I want my voice to ring throughout the whole world, starting at home, and my community of His greatness.

Prophets Speak – Christmas Day One Hundred Sixty and One

“Then said I, Woe is me! For I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips: for mine eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts.” Isaiah 6:5 (KJV)

A troubled prophet, is in the temple, and sees the LORD “High and lifted up” in His glory.  In doing this the prophet show us what all of us should do when GOD reveals Himself to us.

What do I want for Christmas?

When I am burdened by and with my own sin, the wickedness in the world, and that of my community and neighbors; I want to always see GOD on His throne “High and lifted” up; which causes me to bow, to humble myself before Him and gives me rest from my burdens; because He is the Sovereign One, and He reigns in the affairs of mankind.

Prophets Speak – Christmas Day One Hundred Sixty and Two

“For Jerusalem stumbled,
And Judah is fallen,
Because their tongue and their doings
Are against the LORD,
To provoke the eyes of His glory.
The look on their countenance witnesses against them,
And they declare their sin as Sodom;
They do not hide it.
Woe to their soul!
For they have brought evil upon themselves.” Isaiah 3:8-9 (NKJV)

This prophecy is a message directed to the city of Jerusalem in the prophets day, and the people of Judah.  We can, however, see that the message would fit with the Christianity as well in the Twenty First century.

What do I want for Christmas?

Seeing that many sins, shame, and condemnation is within the lives of many who call themselves “Christian” and there is no remorse, no repentance; I want the power of the Spirit of God to come over  every Christian, including myself, to make us aware of our guilt, our sins, unto repentance, and to embolden us to stand for Christ Jesus, His cross, His burial, His resurrection; and His second coming, and to tell others of His power, glory, and His glorious salvation through faith in Christ.

 

Prophets Speak – Christmas Day One Hundred Sixty and Three

“Hear, O heavens, and give ear, O earth: for the LORD has spoken, I have nourished and brought up children, and they have rebelled against Me. The ox knows his owner, and the ass his master’s crib: but Israel does not know, My people does not consider. Ah sinful nation, a people laden with iniquity, a seed of evildoers, children that are corrupters: they have forsaken the LORD, they have provoked the Holy One of Israel unto anger, they are gone away backward. Why should ye be stricken any more? You will revolt more and more: the whole head is sick, and the whole heart faint. From the sole of the foot even unto the head there is no soundness in it; but wounds, and bruises, and putrifying sores: they have not been closed, neither bound up, neither mollified with ointment. Your country is desolate, your cities are burned with fire: your land, strangers devour it in your presence, and it is desolate, as overthrown by strangers. And the daughter of Zion is left as a cottage in a vineyard, as a lodge in a garden of cucumbers, as a besieged city. Except the LORD of hosts had left unto us a very small remnant, we should have been as Sodom, and we should have been like unto Gomorrah.” Isaiah 1:2-9 (KJV)

What do I want for Christmas?

I want to always hear the Word of God, spoken by God’s servants, and do the word and will of God; and I want all those who call themselves Christian to hear and do the word and will of God; so that God will be glorified in and through our godly, Christlike living.

Christmas Day Two Hundred Forty and Four

What do I want for Christmas?

I want today to be a day of faith, joy and peace for all who will seek the face of the Lord Jesus.

Seek ye the LORD while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near…” Isaiah 55:6 (KJV)

“But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” Matthew 6:33

“Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you: for every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.” Matthew 7:7

Day Two Hundred Sixty and Three

What do I want for Christmas?

I want all the Nation of Israel to know that God has your back; He is watching over you; and I want you to know that  Jesus is the Christ the Son of God, and God the Son, and that one day you will look upon Him, bow before Him as your King and Messiah.

And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, There shall come out of Sion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob: for this is My covenant unto them, when I shall take away their sins. As concerning the gospel, they are enemies for your sakes: but as touching the election, they are beloved for the fathers’ sakes. For the gifts and calling of God are without repentance.” Romans 11:26-29 (KJV)

“And the Redeemer shall come to Zion, and unto them that turn from transgression in Jacob, saith the LORD. As for Me, this is My covenant with them, saith the LORD; My Spirit that is upon thee, and My words which I have put in thy mouth, shall not depart out of thy mouth, nor out of the mouth of thy seed, nor out of the mouth of thy seed’s seed, saith the LORD, from henceforth and for ever.” Isaiah 59:20-21

Day Two Hundred Seventy and Five

What do I want for Christmas?

I want you; I want the world to know that God is still greatly offended by our sins; that judgment’s hell fire is what you and I deserve, because of our offense toward God; but God has loved us so much that He gave us His only begotten Son to die for our sins, paid our redemption price with His own life, was laid in a tomb taking our sins, shame, guilt condemnation away in death, then bodily arose alive from that grave; and whosoever believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life with Him.

But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid His face from you, that He will not hear.” Isaiah 59:2 (KJV)

“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” John 3:16

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)

Day Two Hundred Seventy and Eight

What do I want for Christmas?

I want the people who call themselves “People of God” to return to God’s Word, trusting His Word, His Spirit and His way in our own hearts, our lives, families, Churches, and our Nation.

Woe to them that go down to Egypt for help; and stay on horses, and trust in chariots, because they are many; and in horsemen, because they are very strong; but they look not unto the Holy One of Israel, neither seek the LORD!” Isaiah 31:1 (KJV)
“Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy paths.” Proverbs 3:5-6

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 Two Hundred Eighty and Nine

Everyday is Christmas – What do I want for Christmas?

I want to put my complete trust in the Lord Jesus Christ for the problems I personally face, for the problems of my family, and the problems of our Nation (the U. S. of A.); to realize that our trust must be in Him alone, not in politics or any political, deceptive so called leader.

Woe to them that go down to Egypt for help; and stay on horses, and trust in chariots, because they are many; and in horsemen, because they are very strong; but they look not unto the Holy One of Israel, neither seek the LORD!”  Isaiah 31:1 (KJV)

“It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in princes.”  Psalm 118:9

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 Hundred Thirty and Eight

What do I want for Christmas?

I want the people in the States of Kentucky, and all the eastern States affected by the snow storm, blizzard of 2016 to be safe, dry, warm, and protected; and if they are stranded on the road to hang on, and for them all to call on the name of the Lord, for their protection, safety and eternal salvation.

You will keep him in perfect peace, Whose mind is stayed on You, Because he trusts in You.” Isaiah 26:3 (NKJV)

Seeing, Hearing and Understanding

Seeing and hearing are an important part of human living and existence. Without seeing we could not see the beauties of the created order around us; neither could we see to navigate as we walk, ride or drive through a countryside.

Without hearing we could not hear the sounds of animals in the creation, neither the cries of our children as young babies crying out for care and nourishment; neither the voices of our spouses and friends, or other family members. We would not be able to hear the warning shouts of someone warning us of an upcoming danger.

These two senses are an important part of human life. They are also an important part of our spiritual existence. In the spiritual realm we can be very easily deceived, unless we have someone in whom we can trust and depend.

In Jesus’s days on earth He taught people, and called people to Himself; teaching them how to live in the Word of God, to do justly, to love mercy, and how to walk humbly with God. Yet, there were many who would not hear; nor would they see who He really is. Jesus says that this too is a fulfillment of prophecy:

“And in them is fulfilled the prophecy of Esaias, which saith, By hearing ye shall hear, and shall not understand; and seeing ye shall see, and shall not perceive: for this people’s heart is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes they have closed; lest at any time they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and should understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them. But blessed are your eyes, for they see: and your ears, for they hear.” Matthew 13:14-16 (KJV)

Isaiah is the prophet whom Jesus quotes (Isaiah 6:9-10). The blindness and deafness of the religious leaders was fulfillment of that. It is a truth we cannot neglect to hear. When the truth of Scripture is rejected the truths of God will grow more and more dim; the hearing will fade away into oblivion and there will be no knowledge or understanding of God or His Word.

Those who know God through His Son Jesus Christ love the Word of God, and hide in the heart that we might not sin against God (Psalm 119:11), and make it a light for our path (Psalm 119:105).

The path to understanding God and His Word is through the cross of Jesus Christ who died for our sins, was buried, and bodily arose from the grave. Believe Him, trust His Word. It is the way of life, and life everlasting.

No Hurt; No Destruction

“And it shall come to pass, that before they call, I will answer; and while they are yet speaking, I will hear. The wolf and the lamb shall feed together, and the lion shall eat straw like the bullock: and dust shall be the serpent’s meat. They shall not hurt nor destroy in all My holy mountain, saith the LORD.” Isaiah 65:24-25 (KJV)

These verses are a promise to the “Blessed of the LORD” (65:23). The prophecy is still speaking of the Servant.

The Servant was beaten, despised, and rejected by His own. He was crucified, buried, and rose again from the grave (Isaiah 53; Matthew 27, 28; Mark 15; Luke 24, John 20-21; 1 Corinthians 15:1-8). He is Servant because He chose to leave heaven to become a man, that He might die for the sins of the whole world.

Though the iniquities of the world were placed on Him, and though He died with those sins on Him, in His burial He carried them all away, and they are cast away as far as East is from West; they are cast into the deepest parts of the sea; never to be retrieved; never to be held against those who will receive this gift of heaven; this gift of grace.

The eternal benefits are living in His eternal kingdom with Him. For the people of Israel they will live under His glorious reign on the new earth. All will be heard, and He will answer. There will be no more threat from wild animals. The wolf and the lion; both have been predator animals, carnivores for most of the existence of the earth; they will be mild, pleasant, peaceful animals.

The rulers of this present world are searching for peace, working for peace, and it is to no avail. It will not happen because of the wickedness, the conniving, deceiving, scheming, lying, cheating, thieving ungodly ways of mankind.

Jesus is coming soon. Hear and believe. Receive Him, and live with Him eternally.

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.

Stop, Look, and Listen

This title are words of warning I learned as a child about Railroad Crossings, and crossing them: STOP, LOOK, and LISTEN.  Perhaps you remember them; and they are practical words for all of life.  Especially for the words of our Lord.

“Hearken to Me, ye that follow after righteousness, ye that seek the LORD: look unto the rock whence ye are hewn, and to the hole of the pit whence ye are digged. Look unto Abraham your father, and unto Sarah that bare you: for I called him alone, and blessed him, and increased him. For the LORD shall comfort Zion: He will comfort all her waste places; and He will make her wilderness like Eden, and her desert like the garden of the LORD; joy and gladness shall be found therein, thanksgiving, and the voice of melody.” Isaiah 51:1-3 (KJV)

People will hear what they want to hear. Have you heard that statement before? It is illustrated by the story of two men walking on the busy streets and sidewalks of New York City. One man is telling the other of how people will only hear what they want to hear. The one being told this did not agree, so the one who made the statement dropped a coin, on the concrete sidewalk, and nearly everyone stopped.

How much do we miss by not listening and by not hearing what God has to say? Much. Very much I would say.

The words above, “Hearken to Me…” is the plea to God’s people to listen to Him. He makes this plea to the “righteous” to those “that seek the LORD”. Note what He is asking them to do. First He tells them to listen; then, He tells them to “Look”.

It is very basically a call to remember the promises He has previously given. Promises concerning Abraham and Sarah (Genesis 12:1-3). It is a promise that He will bring them back to the land of Promise; and that it will be prosperous once again.

This too is a promise of the fulfillment of all that God has promised to Israel, His nation, and Zion [Jerusalem]. That is a promise which will be fulfilled when Jesus comes to earth again.

Christian, we can rejoice in knowing that these promises of God are irrevocable, and that the gifts and calling of God are without repentance (Romans 11:29).  Take time today to STOP what you are doing; LOOK into the word of God; and then LISTEN and hear His invitation to come to Him for deliverance from your sins.

Be sure and listen to our Lord, Creator, and Saviour today, and everyday.

Back to the Smiters

“The Lord GOD hath opened Mine ear, and I was not rebellious, neither turned away back. I gave My back to the smiters, and My cheeks to them that plucked off the hair: I hid not My face from shame and spitting. For the Lord GOD will help Me; therefore shall I not be confounded: therefore have I set My face like a flint, and I know that I shall not be ashamed.” Isaiah 50:5-7 (KJV)

This is more dealing with the Servant prophecies. Isaiah writing of the Messiah who was coming, and came; and His name is Jesus, the Christ; or Messiah.

The prophecy above speaks of His coming in what is called the first advent. He was born as a baby in a manger. He came into the world just like the rest of us did, by human birth. He was, and is the Lamb of God, and it is quite fitting that He would be born in a manger where the animals fed.

Jesus was not rebellious to do the Father’s will. He said,

“I do always those things that please Him.” John 8:29

Even at the age of twelve He told Mary and Joseph,

“How is it that ye sought Me? Wist ye not that I must be about My Father’s business?” Luke 2:49

As Jesus was tried in the unjust, early, trial He was beaten, and willingly gave His back to the whip, His cheeks to those who plucked off His beard, and spit in His face (Matthew 26:67; 27:26; Mark 14:65; Luke 22:64; John 19:1).

The Obedient Servant, Jesus the Christ obeyed the Father all the way to the cross so that those who believe, trust in Him might be saved from their sins. He went to the cross, in obedience and without shame; because He had a mindset for the glory of the Father.