Archive for December, 2011

You Are Not Your Own—Daily Devotion By Oswald Chambers

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   By Oswald Chambers

Author of: “My Utmost for His Highest”

Devotion For December 21st

 

 

We have received . . . the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God.

Reality is Redemption, not my experience of Redemption; but Redemption has no meaning for me until it speaks the language of my conscious life. When I am born again, the Spirit of God takes me right out of myself and my experiences, and identifies me with Jesus Christ. If I am left with my experiences, my experiences have not been produced by Redemption. The proof that they are produced by Redemption is that I am led out of myself all the time, I no longer pay any attention to my experiences as the ground of Reality, but only to the Reality which produced the experiences. My experiences are not worth anything unless they keep me at the Source, Jesus Christ.

If you try to dam up the Holy Spirit in you to produce subjective experiences, you will find that He will burst all bounds and take you back again to the historic Christ. Never nourish an experience which has not God as its Source and faith in God as its result. If you do, your experience is anti-Christian, no matter what visions you may have had. Is Jesus Christ Lord of your experiences, or do you try to lord it over Him? Is any experience dearer to you than your Lord? He must be Lord over you, and you must not pay attention to any experience over which He is not Lord. There comes a time when God will make you impatient with your own experience – I do not care what I experience; I am sure of Him.

Be ruthless with yourself if you are given to talking about the experiences you have had. Faith that is sure of itself is not faith; faith that is sure of God is the only faith there is.

1 Corinthians 2:12

The Right Lines Of Work—Daily Devotion By Oswald Chambers

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By Oswald Chambers

Author of: “My Utmost for His Highest”

Devotion For December 20th

“I, if I be lifted up, will draw all men unto Me.”

John 12:32

Very few of us have any understanding of the reason why Jesus Christ died. If sympathy is all that human beings need, then the Cross of Christ is a farce, there was no need for it. What the world needs is not “a little bit of love,” but a surgical operation.

When you are face to face with a soul in difficulty spiritually, remind yourself of Jesus Christ on the Cross. If that soul can get to God on any other line, then the Cross of Jesus Christ is unnecessary. If you can help others by your sympathy or understanding, you are a traitor to Jesus Christ. You have to keep your soul rightly related to God and pour out for others on His line, not pour out on the human line and ignore God. The great note to-day is amiable religiosity.

The one thing we have to do is to exhibit Jesus Christ crucified, to lift Him up all the time. Every doctrine that is not imbedded in the Cross of Jesus will lead astray. If the worker himself believes in Jesus Christ and is banking on the Reality of Redemption, the people he talks to must be concerned. The thing that remains and deepens is the worker’s simple relationship to Jesus Christ; his usefulness to God depends on that and that alone.

The calling of a New Testament worker is to uncover sin and to reveal Jesus Christ as Saviour, consequently he cannot be poetical, he must be sternly surgical. We are sent by God to lift up Jesus Christ, not to give wonderfully beautiful discourses. We have to probe straight down as deeply as God has probed us, to be keen in sensing the Scriptures which bring the truth straight home and to apply them fearlessly.

What To Concentrate On—Daily Devotion By Oswald Chambers

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By Oswald Chambers

Author of: “My Utmost for His Highest”

Devotion For December 19th

“I came not to send peace, but a sword.”

Matthew 10:34

Never be sympathetic with the soul whose case makes you come to the conclusion that God is hard. God is more tender than we can conceive, and every now and again He gives us the chance of being the rugged one that He may be the tender One. If a man cannot get through to God it is because there is a secret thing he does not intend to give up – I will admit I have done wrong, but I no more intend to give up that thing than fly. It is impossible to deal sympathetically with a case like that: we have to get right deep down to the root until there is antagonism and resentment against the message. People want the blessing of God, but they will not stand the thing that goes straight to the quick.

If God has had His way with you, your message as His servant is merciless insistence on the one line, cut down to the very root, otherwise there will be no healing. Drive home the message until there is no possible refuge from its application. Begin to get at people where they are until you get them to realize what they lack, and then erect the standard of Jesus Christ for their lives – “We never can be that.” Then drive it home – “Jesus Christ says you must.” “But how can we be?” “You cannot, unless you have a new Spirit.” (Luke 11:13.)

There must be a sense of need before your message is of any use. Thousands of people are happy without God in this world. If I was happy and moral till Jesus came, why did He come? Because that kind of happiness and peace is on a wrong level; Jesus Christ came to send a sword through every peace that is not based on a personal relationship to Himself.

The Test Of Loyalty—Daily Devotion By Oswald Chambers

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By Oswald Chambers

Author of: “My Utmost for His Highest”

Devotion For December 18th

 

 

“And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God.”

Romans 8:28

It is only the loyal soul who believes that God engineers circumstances. We take such liberty with our circumstances, we do not believe God engineers them, although we say we do; we treat the things that happen as if they were engineered by men. To be faithful in every circumstance means that we have only one loyalty, and that is to our Lord. Suddenly God breaks up a particular set of circumstances, and the realization comes that we have been disloyal to Him by not recognizing that He had ordered them; we never saw what He was after, and that particular thing will never be repeated all the days of our life. The test of loyalty always comes just there. If we learn to worship God in the trying circumstances, He will alter them in two seconds when He chooses.

Loyalty to Jesus Christ is the thing that we “stick at” to-day. We will be loyal to work, to service, to anything, but do not ask us to be loyal to Jesus Christ. Many Christians are intensely impatient of talking about loyalty to Jesus. Our Lord is dethroned more emphatically by Christian workers than by the world. God is made a machine for blessing men, and Jesus Christ is made a Worker among workers.

The idea is not that we do work for God, but that we are so loyal to Him that He can do His work through us – “I reckon on you for extreme service, with no complaining on your part and no explanation on Mine.” God wants to use us as He used His own Son.

Redemption Creates The Need It Satisfies—Daily Devotion By Oswald Chambers

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By Oswald Chambers

Author of: “My Utmost for His Highest”

Devotion For December 17th

“But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him.”

1 Corinthians 2:14

The Gospel of God creates a sense of need of the Gospel. Paul says – “If our gospel be hid, it is hid” – to those who are blackguards? No, “to them that are lost: in whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not.” The majority of people have their morality well within their own grasp, they have no sense of need of the Gospel. It is God Who creates the need of which no human being is conscious until God manifests Himself. Jesus said – “Ask, and it shall be given you,” but God cannot give until a man asks. It is not that He withholds, but that that is the way He has. constituted things on the basis of Redemption. By means of our asking, God gets processes into work whereby He creates the thing that is not in existence until we do ask. The inner reality of Redemption is that it creates all the time. As the Redemption creates the life of God in us, so it creates the things belonging to that life. Nothing can satisfy the need but that which created the need. This is the meaning of Redemption – it creates and it satisfies.

“I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto Me.” We preach our own experiences and people are interested, but no sense of need is awakened by it. If once Jesus Christ is lifted up, the Spirit of God will create a conscious need of Him. Behind the preaching of the Gospel is the creative Redemption of God at work in the souls of men. It is never personal testimony that saves men. “The words that I speak unto you, they are spirit and they are life.”

 

Praying In The Spirit

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 By Pastor Dennis Smith– Please Visit Pastor Smith’s Web Site

 Every Christian is involved in warfare with the enemy with eternal consequences at stake.  This battle is as real as any ever fought on this earth between nations.  The battle is between the kingdom of God and the kingdom of darkness.  Paul describes this battle as a wrestling match, which is up close and personal:

“For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places” (Eph 6:12).

Paul next describes the armor of God that the Christian must put on for victory.  Paul concludes his description of this warfare and our defense/offense against the enemy with the words: “Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints” (verse 18).

Note that Paul commands us to pray “always.”  We must become a prevailing prayer intercessor, praying consistently and persistently.  Then he adds, “in the spirit.”  Here we see that if we want victory over the enemy, praying in the Spirit is just as important as putting on the whole armor of God.

An important question, then, is What does it mean to pray in the Spirit?  A brief definition would be that we pray in the Spirit when our prayers are prompted by the Holy Spirit.  We are to be directed by the Spirit as to when to pray and what to pray for.  The Holy Spirit is to guide us in every aspect of our prayer life.  When we are praying in the Spirit, our prayers will be empowered by the Spirit.  Our prayers will be effective and will bring powerful results.  Hence, we can see that in order to pray in the Spirit, we must be baptized with the Spirit.

“By the Spirit every sincere prayer is indicted [made up or composed], and such prayer is acceptable to God” (Desire of Ages, p. 189).

Referring to Paul’s statement in Romans 8:26 and 27, she writes:

“We must not only pray in Christ’s name, but by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit.  This explains what is meant when it is said that the Spirit ‘maketh intercession for us, with groanings which cannot be uttered.’  Romans 8:26.  Such prayer God delights to answer”  (Christ’s Object Lessons, p. 147).

It is the Holy Spirit that calls us to prayer.  He will show us some great need to pray for because God wants to begin acting in meeting that need.  We read of such an experience in the case of Jesus praying for Peter:

“And the Lord said, ‘Simon, Simon!  Indeed, Satan has asked for you, that he may sift you as wheat.  But I have prayed for you, that your faith should not fail’” (Luke 22:31, 32).

The Holy Spirit convicted Christ to pray for Peter – and even revealed what Satan’s plan was concerning Peter.  Once Christ knew this, He began praying for Peter.  The Holy Spirit will do the same through us; He will bring to our mind someone to pray for.  He may, or may not, reveal why He wants us to pray for them.  The important thing is that we respond to the Spirit’s prompting to pray.

 

 

Wrestling Before God—Daily Devotion By Oswald Chambers

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By Oswald Chambers

Author of: “My Utmost for His Highest”

Devotion For December 16th

“Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God … praying always … “

Ephesians 6:13,18

You have to wrestle against the things that prevent you from getting to God, and you wrestle in prayer for other souls; but never say that you wrestle with God in prayer, it is scripturally untrue. If you do wrestle with God, you will be crippled all the rest of your life. If, when God comes in some way you do not want, you take hold of Him as Jacob did and wrestle with Him, you compel Him to put you out of joint. Don’t be a hirpler in God’s ways, but be one who wrestles before God with things, becoming more than conqueror through Him. Wrestling before God tells in His Kingdom. If you ask me to pray for you and I am not complete in Christ, I may pray but it avails nothing; but if I am complete in Christ my prayer prevails all the time. Prayer is only effective when there is completeness – “Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God.”

Always distinguish between God’s order and His permissive will, i.e., His providential purpose towards us. God’s order is unchangeable; His permissive will is that with which we must wrestle before Him. It is our reaction to the permissive will of God that enables us to get at His order. “All things work together for good to them that love God” – to those who remain true to God’s order, to His calling in Christ Jesus. God’s permissive will is the means whereby His sons and daughters are to be manifested. We are not to be like jelly-fish saying, “It’s the Lord’s will.” We have not to put up a fight before God, not to wrestle with God, but to wrestle before God with things. Beware of squatting lazily before God in stead of putting up a glorious fight so that you may lay hold of His strength.

Approved Unto God—Daily Devotion By Oswald Chambers

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  By Oswald Chambers

Author of: “My Utmost for His Highest”

Devotion For December 15th

“Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.”

2 Timothy 2:15

If you cannot express yourself on any subject, struggle until you can. If you do not, someone will be the poorer all the, days of his life. Struggle to re-express some truth of God to your self, and God will use that expression to some one else. Go through the winepress of God where the grapes are crushed. You must struggle to get expression experimentally, then there will come a time when that expression will become the very wine of strengthening to someone else; but if you say lazily – “I am not going to struggle to express this thing for myself, I will borrow what I say,” the expression will not only be of no use to you, but of no use to anyone. Try to state to yourself what you feel implicitly to be God’s truth, and you give God a chance to pass it on to someone else through you.

Always make a practice of provoking your own mind to think out what it accepts easily. Our position is not ours until we make it ours by suffering. The author who benefits you most is not the one who tells you something you did not know before, but the one who gives expression to the truth that has been dumbly struggling in you for utterance.

The Great Life—Daily Devotion By Oswald Chambers

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 Nuuk Greenland  

 

 

 

 

   By Oswald Chambers

Author of: “My Utmost for His Highest”

Devotion For December 14th

 

 

 

Peace I leave with you, My peace I give unto you: . . Let not your heart be troubled.”

John 14:27

Whenever a thing becomes difficult in personal experience, we are in danger of blaming God, but it is we who are in the wrong, not God, there is some perversity somewhere that we will not let go. Immediately we do, everything becomes as clear as daylight. As long as we try to serve two ends, ourselves and God, there is perplexity. The attitude must be one of complete reliance on God. When once we get there, there is nothing easier than living the saintly life; difficulty comes in when we want to usurp the authority of the Holy Spirit for our own ends.

Whenever you obey God, His seal is always that of peace, the witness of an unfathomable peace, which is not natural, but the peace of Jesus. Whenever peace does not come, tarry till it does or find out the reason why it does not. If you are acting on an impulse, or from a sense of the heroic, the peace of Jesus will not witness; there is no simplicity or confidence in God, because the spirit of simplicity is born of the Holy Ghost, not of your decisions. Every decision brings a reaction of simplicity.

My questions come whenever I cease to obey. When I have obeyed God, the problems never come between me and God, they come as probes to keep the mind going on with amazement at the revelation of God. Any problem that comes between God and myself springs out of disobedience; any problem, and there are many, that is alongside me while I obey God, increases my ecstatic delight, because I know that my Father knows, and I am going to watch and see how He unravels this thing.

Grow in Your relationship with Jesus Christ

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  We have the “assurance” of salvation when we “trust” Jesus with our lives, that’s it.  Once we trust Jesus, He, our great Heavenly Physician, will perfectly heal and restore us, thus our assurance is in Jesus, not in ourselves or our future. Salvation is Now!!  1John 5:11-13,   1 John 3:2,   John 17:3

 

 

 

 

  Pastor Jasmine Thason 

With the Holy Spirit directing your life, you will experience a deeper relationship with God and you will grow in your ability to trust him.

 

1. What does it mean to grow in your relationship with Jesus?

Growing in your relationship with Jesus means to know him better, to love and obey him more.

“And this is the way to have eternal life-to know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, the one you sent to earth” (John 17:3).

 

 

“Jesus replied: ‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment” (Matthew 22:37-38).

 

 

 

Your growing love for God will lead you to obey his commandments. Amen

(Jesus speaking) “Those who obey my commandments are the ones who love me. And because they love me, my Father will love them, and I will love them. And I will reveal myself to each one of them” (John 14:21).

 

Just as it’s natural for a child to grow in a loving relationship with a parent, it’s also natural for you to grow in your love relationship with God.

 

 

2. How can you grow in your relationship with Jesus?

Communication is vital to any relationship. There are four aspects of communication that will help you develop your relationship with Jesus.

 

 

i) God communicates with us in various ways, including through the Bible, revealing his character and his will.

 

ii) “All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realise what is wrong in our lives. It straightens us out and teaches us to do what is right. It is God’s way of preparing us in every way, fully equipped for every good thing God wants us to do” (2 Timothy 3:16-17).

 

 

n Which of these benefits of Bible reading would be most helpful to you right now?

 

 

iii) We communicate with God through prayer-sharing our thoughts, our needs and our desire to do his will.

 

“Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. If you do this, you will experience God’s peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:6,7).

 

“And we can be confident that he will listen to us whenever we ask him for anything in line with his will. And if we know he is listening when we make our requests, we can be sure that he will give us what we ask for” (1 John 5:14-15).

 

These verses tell us we can pray about everything. When we pray according to God’s will, he hears us and answers us. Thanking God is also part of praying.

 

 

“No matter what happens, always be thankful, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus”

(1 Thessalonians 5:18).

 

 

“Always give thanks for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ” (Ephesians 5:20).

By thanking God, we express our trust in him.

 

 

What are some things you can be praying about?

 

 

iv) We communicate with Christians through fellowship-encouraging and building up one another.

“Think of ways to encourage one another to outbursts of love and good deeds. And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage and warn each other, especially now that the day of his coming back again is drawing near” (Hebrews 10:24-25).

 

 

It’s important to spend time with other Christians-to encourage each other to love and do good. The Greek word for fellowship, koinonia, means “sharing in common.” There is a famous saying used in the early church in Ireland that a person without a soul friend  is like a body without a head. A soul friend is simply a support person who challenges you to grow-a friend along the spiritual journey who is an equal, not a superior.

 

We need to share our Christian experience with others who love God, and likewise allow them to share with us. God appoints the church as a place for us to meet other Christians and learn about God. Bible studies and other meetings are also helpful.

 

 

v) We communicate with others who don’t know God personally by witnessing-sharing about our relationship with Jesus in word and deed. Jesus is the only name by which we can be saved.

 

“There is salvation in no one else! There is no other name in all of heaven for people to call on to save them”

(Acts 4:12).

 

 

 

  • What would motivate you to tell another person about Jesus?
  • Who would you like to tell about what Jesus has done in your life?

 

 

Suggestions for Further Growth

Set aside a time and place for daily personal Bible study and prayer. A good book to begin with is the New Testament Book of John. As you read, underline verses you find particularly meaningful. Pray and ask God to show you who he is and how you can respond to him.

 

Study other passages, such as the ones in this lesson and Psalms 1:1-6, Psalm 34:1, Psalm 103:1-22, and Psalm 145:1-21,  Matthew 7:7-11; Luke 9:23-26; John 15:1-7; 1 Corinthians 12:12-27; 2 Corinthians 5:17-21; and Colossians 1:9-12.

 

 

This is the beginning of your new life in Christ and there is much more to discover than what’s covered in these four lessons. Take the initiative today to find a church, fellowship, parish, community or prayer group that is Christ-centred and has a focus on the Scriptures and make plans to attend regularly. For additional Christian materials, look in your local bookshop or Christian bookshop.

 

 

Summary

As you rely on the Holy Spirit for power, read the Bible, pray, spend time with other believers and share Jesus with others, God will produce his character in you and you will mature spiritually.

 

This is the best time CHRISTMAS SEASON to WITNESS TO NON BELIVERS and show the LOVE of CHRIST by inviting them to your house for a fellowship … prepare some lite snack or cookies and chit chat….. God bless all of you and this is a very Blessed Season of Joy as we celebrate and remember the birth of JESUS Christ.

 

Blessings and love to you in Jesus Name. Amen

Rev Jasmine Thason

What To Pray For—Daily Devotion By Oswald Chambers

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We have the “assurance” of salvation when we “trust” Jesus with our lives, that’s it.  Once we trust Jesus, He, our great Heavenly Physician, will perfectly heal and restore us, thus our assurance is in Jesus, not in ourselves or our future. Salvation is Now!!  1John 5:11-13,   1 John 3:2,   John 17:3

 

 

 

   By Oswald Chambers

Author of: “My Utmost for His Highest”

Devotion For December 13th

“Men ought always to pray, and not to faint”

Luke 18:1

You cannot intercede if you do not believe in the reality of the Redemption; you will turn intercession into futile sympathy with human beings which will only increase their submissive content to being out of touch with God. In intercession you bring the person, or the circumstance that impinges on you before God until you are moved by His attitude towards that person or circumstance. Intercession means filling up “that which is behind of the afflictions of Christ,” and that is why there are so few intercessors. Intercession is put on the line of – “Put yourself in his place.” Never! Try to put yourself in God’s place.

As a worker, be careful to keep pace with the communications of reality from God or you will be crushed. If you know too much, more than God has engineered for you to know, you cannot pray, the condition of the people is so crushing that you cannot get through to reality.

Our work lies in coming into definite contact with God about everything, and we shirk it by becoming active workers. We do the things that can be tabulated but we will not intercede. Intercession is the one thing that has no snares, because it keeps our relationship with God completely open.

The thing to watch in intercession is that no soul is patched up, a soul must get through into contact with the life of God. Think of the number of souls God has brought about our path and we have dropped them! When we pray on the ground of Redemption, God creates something He can create in no other way than through intercessory prayer.