Archive for June, 2012

No One Compares to Him

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Psalm 89:6 asks the question: “Who among the sons of the mighty is like the Lord?”

And the answer is, any pursuit of God’s counterpart is vain.  No one and nothing compares to him.  No one advises him.  No one helps him.  You and I may have power.  But God IS power.

Unlike the potter who takes something and reshapes it, God took nothing and created something.  God created everything that exists by divine fiat.  John said in Revelation, “You, God created all things, and it is for your pleasure that they exist and were created.  Revelation 4:11″

Even God asks, “To whom will you compare me?”  As if his question needed an answer, he gives one:  “I am God–I alone.  I am God.  There is no one else like me! Isaiah 46:4-9″

We’re blessed to be his children.  We can only stand humbly before him and praise his glorious name!

Get A Move On—Devotion By Oswald Chambers

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“And beside this … add . .”

2 Peter 1:5

You have inherited the Divine nature, says Peter (2 Peter 1:4), now screw your attention down and form habits, give diligence, concentrate. “Add” means all that character means. No man is born either naturally or supernaturally with character, he has to make character. Nor are we born with habits; we have to form habits on the basis of the new life God has put into us. We are not meant to be illuminated versions, but the common stuff of ordinary life exhibiting the marvel of the grace of God. Drudgery is the touchstone of character. The great hindrance in spiritual life is that we will look for big things to do. “Jesus took a towel…and began to wash the disciples’ feet.”

There are times when there is no illumination and no thrill, but just the daily round, the common task. Routine is God’s way of saving us between our times of inspiration. Do not expect God always to give you His thrilling minutes, but learn to live in the domain of drudgery by the power of God.

It is the “adding” that is difficult. We say we do not expect God to carry us to heaven on flowery beds of ease, and yet we act as if we did! The tiniest detail in which I obey has all the omnipotent power of the grace of God behind it. If I do my duty, not for duty’s sake, but because I believe God is engineering my circumstances, then at the very point of my obedience the whole superb grace of God is mine through the Atonement.

 

Are You A Struggling Christian? You Can Live In Victory!

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    By Pastor Dennis Smith

Visit Pastor Smith’s Holy Spirit Website


 

The problem the struggling Christian has is not that he/she doesn’t want to obey God.  The problem is that he/she doesn’t know how to live a consistently obedient life.  That is what this book is all about; to help born again men and women find the simple yet elusive truth of how to let Christ live out His life in them.  When this truth is discovered there will no longer be a struggle with temptation.  The only struggle will be to decide if you want Christ to give you His victory over that particular sin.  You still have a free will.  Once that decision is made the victory will be gained through Christ living out His righteousness in the life.

Right now you might be thinking; “What, that can’t be true!”  Or you might be receiving hope that there really is an answer to the struggle you are having.  I pray that you are receiving hope.  After all, the Bible says that “as many as received him, to them gave him power to become the sons of God” (John 1:12).  The word translated power comes from the Greek word from which we get the English word “dynamite.”   There is no shortage of power with God.  The problem is that many or even most Christians don’t know how to let God manifest His “dynamite” power in their lives for victory over every temptation and sin.

 

You Can Live in Victory

 

I want to reassure you from God’s Word that the Christian can truly live a victorious life through Jesus Christ our Lord.  This book is dedicated to helping you under the Holy Spirit’s enlightenment discover that truth for yourself.

The first step in experiencing the complete deliverance Jesus wants you to have over sin is to recognize that you have no power within yourself to obtain the victory.  You must realize that you are absolutely helpless when it comes to overcoming the temptations in your life.  The natural born sinful nature is so strong in you that its power will make you a slave of it unless the power of God delivers you from this slavery.    This is the very point Paul was making in Romans chapter seven.

The natural response of every Christian to God’s commands it to put forth every effort with God’s help to try to obey.  What I want you to realize in this chapter is that your striving to obey will cause to you to fail every time.  You do not have it in you to obey no matter how hard you try.  You don’t have it in you to obey even if you think you can with God’s added power united with your effort to obey.  You must realize that you can do absolutely nothing to live an obedient life as far as putting forth effort is concerned.  This is because of the extremely powerful sinful nature that resides in you.  In stead of you struggling with the temptation you must depend 100 percent on Christ for victory.

In this book I will be emphasizing very strongly the fact that our victory over temptation and sin comes only as we allow Christ to live out His life in us; not by struggling with the temptation.  Our struggle is to maintain our hold on God and keep faith in His promises of victory.  Peter pointed this out when he wrote:

 

“Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.”  2Peter 1:4

 

Peter goes on to tell us that as we partake of the divine nature, which is Christ living in us, we will be growing more and more like Christ.  As we overcome our sinful natures effort to manifest sinful desires we will develop faith, virtue, knowledge, temperance, patience, godliness, brotherly kindness and love.  As Paul puts it:

 

“But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.” 2Corinthians 3:18

 

It is through Christ living in us by the Holy Spirit that we are moment-by-moment and day-by-day changed into Christ’s image.  Every temptation we overcome by allowing Christ to manifest Himself in that particular area of our life will lead us to be changed into the image of Christ in that area of our life.  That is why Paul writes that we are “changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.”

Since the power of our sinful nature is overcome by Christ living in us, in the next chapter we will consider what Christ has done to break the power of this sinful nature, which wants to make us its slave.

God Listens

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  The very foundation of Salvation is grounded in the realization that God’s unmerited love toward us is greater than any other power— including death.                                            Romans 8:35-39, Ephesians 3:14-21

 

 

 

You can talk to God because God listens. Your voice matters in heaven. He takes you very seriously. When you enter his presence, the attendants turn to you to hear your voice. No need to fear that you will be ignored. Even if you stammer or stumble, even if what you have to say impresses no one, it impresses God—and he listens. He listens to the painful plea of the elderly in the rest home. He listens to the gruff confession of the death-row inmate. When the alcoholic begs for mercy, when the spouse seeks guidance, when the businessman steps off the street into the chapel, God listens.

Intently. Carefully. The prayers are honored as precious jewels. Purified and empowered, the words rise in a delightful fragrance to our Lord. “The smoke from the incense went up from the angel’s hand to God.” Incredible. Your words do not stop until they reach the very throne of God.

Then, the angel “filled the incense pan with fire from the altar and threw it on the earth” (Rev. 8:5). One call and Heaven’s fleet appears. Your prayer on earth activates God’s power in heaven, and “God’s will is done on earth as it is in heaven.”

You are the someone of God’s kingdom. You have access to God’s furnace. Your prayers move God to change the world. You may not understand the mystery of prayer. You don’t need to. But this much is clear: Actions in heaven begin when someone prays on earth. What an amazing thought!

When you speak, Jesus hears.
And when Jesus hears, thunder falls.
And when thunder falls, the world is changed.
All because someone prayed.

Thirsty on the Cross

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Thirsty on the Cross
by Max Lucado

Jesus’ final act on earth was intended to win your trust.

This is the final act of Jesus’ life. In the concluding measure of his earthly composition, we hear the sounds of a thirsty man.

And through his thirst—through a sponge and a jar of cheap wine—he leaves a final appeal.

“You can trust me.”

Jesus. Lips cracked and mouth of cotton. Throat so dry he couldn’t swallow, and voice so hoarse he could scarcely speak. He is thirsty. To find the last time moisture touched these lips you need to rewind a dozen hours to the meal in the upper room. Since tasting that cup of wine, Jesus has been beaten, spat upon, bruised, and cut. He has been a cross-carrier and sin-bearer, and no liquid has salved his throat. He is thirsty.

Why doesn’t he do something about it? Couldn’t he? Did he not cause jugs of water to be jugs of wine? Did he not make a wall out of the Jordan River and two walls out of the Red Sea? Didn’t he, with one word, banish the rain and calm the waves? Doesn’t Scripture say that he “turned the desert into pools” (PSALM 107:35 NIV) and “the hard rock into springs” (PSALM 114:8 NIV)?

Did God not say, “I will pour water on him who is thirsty” (ISAIAH. 44:3NKJV)?

If so, why does Jesus endure thirst?

While we are asking this question, add a few more. Why did he grow weary in Samaria (John 4:6), disturbed in Nazareth (Mark 6:6), and angry in the Temple (John 2:15)? Why was he sleepy in the boat on the Sea of Galilee (Mark 4:38), sad at the tomb of Lazarus (John 11:35), and hungry in the wilderness (Matt. 4:2)?

Why? And why did he grow thirsty on the cross?

He didn’t have to suffer thirst. At least, not to the level he did. Six hours earlier he’d been offered drink, but he refused it.

They brought Jesus to the place called Golgotha (which means The Place of the Skull). Then they offered him wine mixed with myrrh, buthe did not take it. And they crucified him. Dividing up his clothes, they cast lots to see what each would get. (Mark 15:22–24 NIV,italics mine)

Before the nail was pounded, a drink was offered. Mark says the wine was mixed with myrrh. Matthew described it as wine mixed with gall. Both myrrh and gall contain sedative properties that numb the senses. But Jesus refused them. He refused to be stupefied by the drugs, opting instead to feel the full force of his suffering.

Why? Why did he endure all these feelings? Because he knew you would feel them too.

He knew you would be weary, disturbed, and angry. He knew you’d be sleepy, grief-stricken, and hungry. He knew you’d face pain. If not the pain of the body, the pain of the soul … pain too sharp for any drug. He knew you’d face thirst. If not a thirst for water, at least a thirst for truth, and the truth we glean from the image of a thirsty Christ is—he understands.

And because he understands, we can come to him.

Living Water

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It’s estimated our bodies are 80% fluid.  Apart from brains, bones, and a few organs, we’re walking water balloons!

Stop drinking water and see what happens.  Coherent thoughts vanish.  Skin gets clammy, and vital organs wrinkle.

Eyes need fluid to cry.  Your mouth needs moisture to swallow and your joints need fluid to stay lubricated.  Your body needs water the same way tires need air!

God wired you with thirst–a “low-fluid indicator.”  Let your fluid level grow low, and watch the signals flare.  Dry mouth.  Achy head.   Weak knees.  Deprive your body of fluid and your body will tell you.  Deprive your soul of spiritual water, and your soul will tell you.

Dehydrated hearts send desperate messages:  Snarling tempers.  Waves of worry.

Jesus said, “if anyone thirsts let him come to me and drink.  He who believes in me, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water! John 4:14″

From Come Thirsty

The Family of God

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Thanks Dick Duerksen For Your Wonderful Photography

 

 

 

 

 

By Pastor Dennis Smith

Check Out All The Inspiring  Holy Spirit Books By Pastor Smith

Sin broke apart the family of God.  The plan of redemption was established to restore this family.  Paul addresses those who have responded to God’s call in their lives in the following way:

“Now, therefore, you are no longer strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God” (Eph. 2:19).

The Greek word translated “household” is oikeios.  When we become a believer in Jesus Christ we become a member of His family.

Traditionally, we tend to think of church in a larger sense, the corporate or congregational aspect.  We do not tend to think of church in terms of a smaller family.  However, the early church from the biblical and historical perspective was made up of small home fellowships.  These fellowship groups functioned as family.

When Paul describes his own feelings toward the Thessalonica family of God, he expresses the relationship that is to be experienced in the family of God:

“We love you so much that we were delighted to share with you not only the gospel of God but our lives as well, because you had become so dear to us” (1 Thess. 2:8, NIV).

These kinds of endearing relationships cannot happen in the larger congregational setting.  If our church activities consist primarily of coming to church on Sabbath morning, greeting our friends, and then returning home, we cannot possibly achieve this level of family relationship.

For example, what if you heard about a family that remained separated from one another during the week and then came together once a week for an hour or two, briefly greeted one another, then sat in rows, and heard someone give a lecture.  Afterward, they went their separate ways until seven days later when they associated “together” by again greeting one another, sitting in rows, and listening to another lecture.  What would you think about that family’s togetherness?  I think you would question if they were really a family.  Most would certainly conclude that their style of family togetherness had much room for improvement.  Amazingly and yet sadly, most Christians seek to be a church family using this pattern of family.

In a healthy family the members know each other intimately.  They know one another’s fears, hopes, dreams, frustrations, and struggles.  In a loving, caring family the members are there to encourage one another with words and actions.

The family of God is to function in the same way.  However, God’s family has one significant advantage over the average family in the world.  God’s family experiences the fruit and gifts of the Spirit functioning in their midst.  God Himself is the One ministering to the family members.  He does this through each member of the family as they continue to receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit.  The intimate relationship with God this daily baptism brings allows Christ to live in and minister through each believer, but this dynamic of family can take place only in the smaller fellowship group setting.

Salvation Belongs To The Lord

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Post By Evangelist Jasmine Thason

 

Salvation belongs to the LORD. HalleluYah!!!! AMEN Blessed day to all my beloved friends in Jesus Christ, Psalms 62:1-2 Truly my soul waits upon God. From Him comes my salvation. He only is my rock and my salvation; He is my defense. I shall not be greatly moved. Revelation 7:10 “Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!” Jonah 2:8 Those who pay regard to vain idols forsake their hope of steadfast love. Where are you looking to find hope in this lost world? If you’re looking for hope to come from the government, or from financial security, or even the prospect of world peace, you’re going to be disappointed. There’s no hope to be found in the things this world has to offer. That may sound depressing, but there is good news. Salvation is found in God alone. Maybe you’ll never find hope where you’re searching, but God is holding out His hand for you to grab onto, offering you hope that you could never know without Him. He’s for you and He wants to give you that hope. Even though we waste a lot of our time looking in all the wrong places, only to be disappointed time and time again, it’s good to know that there is hope after all. It’s good to know that we have a loving Father who cares for us and provides for us a way to forgiveness and reconciliation. It’s good to know that the Son, who is the radiance of the glory of God (Hebrews 1:3) and who holds all things together (Colossians 1:17) stands between us and the Father to serve as our mediator. It’s good to know that the Savior who rose from the dead will also raise us up when the time comes (1 Corinthians 15:16). If you haven’t put your hope in Jesus Christ, look to Him today. He’s all you need in this life, and the time to come. “Hallelujah! Salvation and glory and power belong to our God. Amen May God open your eyes to see the truth. God bless all of you always. Blessings and Love!!!!!

Evangelist Jasmine Thason

God is the Great Giver

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Accumulation of wealth is a popular defense against fear.  Since we fear losing our jobs, health care, or retirement benefits, we amass possessions, thinking the more we have, the safer we are!

If there were no God, ‘stuff-trusting’ would be the only appropriate response to an uncertain future.  But there is a God.  And this God does not want his children to trust money.  He responded to the folly of the rich man with the words,  “Do not worry about your life…Do not seek what you should eat or what you should drink, nor have an anxious mind.”

God is the great giver who “gives us richly all things to enjoy.”  He is the great provider.  The fount of every blessing.  Absolutely generous and utterly dependable.

The resounding message of Scripture is clear.  God owns it all.  God shares it all.

Trust him–not stuff!

Taken from Fearless

The Rest Of The Sabbath Is God’s Love-3a

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The very foundation of Salvation is grounded in the realization that God’s unmerited love toward us is greater than any other power–Including Death!!

Romans 8:35-39, Ephesians 3:14-21, 1John 4:8

 

What would lead God to set a limit to His creative activity and mark the occasion by hallowing the seventh day?

Clearly by ceasing His creation, the Creator stoops to the level of His creatures because God’s heart desire is to be with His creation. The relation marker becomes clear! This is true because God is love! And God’s love “does not seek its own” 1Corinthians 13:5, NKJV “is not self-seeking” 1Corinthians 13:5, NIV or “never seeks its own advantage” 1Corinthians 13:5.

Indeed, the reason why He refrains from further activity on the seventh day is that He has found the object of His love and has no need for any further works!

This is a staggering thought. On the one hand, God’s love thus magnifies human value, showing forth in bold print the worth of human beings to God! On the other hand, the seventh day thus understood brings God’s love into focus at Creation, placing love at the front and center of God’s character and activity from the very beginning.

In the New Testament John makes love the centerpiece of his description of God. “Whoever does not love, does not know God, for God is love. 1John 4:8. Love is God’s defining attribute from the beginning. From first to last love is the wellspring from which all other actions radiate and around all else unites.

What is most important about God at Creation is that God is love. God ceases from working on the seventh to enjoy the company of the person God has created. It is as if we hear God speaking, “I am ceasing on the seventh day not only that you may acknowledge and love me, but in order to make it known that I recognize and love you.

I pray that the lost meaning of The Sabbath will come alive in your life right now and cause you to have an intimate relationship with God.

Thanks to Sigev K. Tonstad.

 

 

     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