Sin Equals Ruin

Sin Equals Ruin

Repent, and turn from all your transgressions, so that iniquity will not be your ruin.  (Ezek 18:30b)

I have not obeyed the voice of my teachers, nor inclined my ear to those who instructed me! 14 I was on the verge of total ruin, in the midst of the assembly and congregation.  (Pro 5:13-14)

The righteous God wisely considers the house of the wicked, overthrowing the wicked for their wickedness.  (Pro 21:12)

A lying tongue hates those who are crushed by it, and a flattering mouth works ruin.  (Pro 26:28)

These verses from the Bible demonstrate to mankind that sin (iniquity, transgression, wickedness) brings about the devastation and destruction of a person’s life.  Continuous unrelenting sin can wreck homes, relationships, health (mental, physical, spiritual) as well as financial stability.

Whereas the blessings for righteous living can be found throughout the Scriptures.  Here are a handful of those blessings:

  • Stability and ever increasing strength (Job 17:9)
  • God defends the righteous and surrounds them with His favor (Ps 5:11-12)
  • Long life; God hears the prayer of the righteous; grants deliverance from trouble; and the Lord guards their very bones. (Ps 34:12-20)
  • Deliverance from death, and the upright will never be allowed to famish.  (Pro 10:2-3)  Famish means:  to suffer for lack of something necessary (essential for life).

Those who have made Jesus Christ their Savior and Lord are made righteous in Christ  (Ro 1:17; 4:5; 10:4; 1 Cor 1:30; 2 Cor 5:21) and are entitled to all of the blessings of the righteous.  We are also privileged to obey and to live according to the moral teachings of Jesus Christ, our Savior.

God’s Wonderful Counsel

This also comes from the Lord of hosts; He is wonderful in counsel and excellent in wisdom.  (Isa 28:29 ESV)

O Lord, You are my God. I will exalt You, I will praise Your name, for You have done wonderful things; Your counsels of old are faithfulness and truth.  (Isa 25:1 NKJV)

For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given; and the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.  (Isa 9:6)

The Lord has declared Himself, through His Word, to be our Counselor.  A counselor is one who gives advice, guidance, and direction.  A wise counselor also gives warning when they feel it is appropriate.

God, who our Savior as well as our Counselor, gives us:

  • Support,
  • A listening ear,
  • Help, and
  • Instruction

We receive many of these blessings through our church family in the person(s) of our Pastor, our elders, and our wise friends.  This is a matchless and precious gift to each one of us.  What a blessing are our brothers and sisters in Christ.

Rely upon the Lord and His Word for the best counsel that exists anywhere in creation or in the universe!

God, Our Savior: Our Hiding Place

You are my hiding place and my shield; I hope in Your word.  (Ps 119:114 ESV)

For in the time of trouble He shall hide me in His pavilion; in the secret place of His tabernacle He shall hide me; He shall set me high upon a rock.  (Ps 27:5 NKJV)

You shall hide them in the secret place of Your presence from the plots of man; You shall keep them secretly in a pavilion from the strife of tongues.  (Ps 31:20 NKJV)

You are my hiding place; You shall preserve me from trouble; You shall surround me with songs of deliverance.  (Ps 32:7 NKJV)

A pavilion is another word for a tent, chamber or building.  Through these Bible passages, the Lord is:

  • Teaching us,
  • Making promises to us, and
  • Encouraging us.

The Lord is teaching us to run to Him and to His Word when we are in need, in poor health, or in trouble.  He is reminding us to lay all of our troubles and concerns at His feet; and to trust Him to deal with each and every one of them on our behalf. 

The Lord, through these Bible verses, promises to:

  • Be our safe haven,
  • Shield us and hide us from trouble,
  • Set us high upon a rock, far from strife and evil words spoken against us,
  • Save (deliver) us from trouble, and
  • Surround us with songs of release and freedom from and victory over all evil.

Last, but not least, the Lord is lovingly encouraging us to put all of our faith and trust in Him and in His Word.  He wants us to be steadfast and unwavering in our faith in Him. 

God wants us to remember that He cannot and does not lie!  (Num 23:19; Tit 1:2)  Trust the Savior today.

Equipped to Please Him

Equipped to Please Him

Now may the God of peace, who through the blood of the eternal covenant brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great Shepherd of the sheep, 21 equip you with everything good for doing his will, and may he work in us what is pleasing to him, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.  (Heb 13:20-21 NIV, emphasis added)

. . .  for it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure.  (Phil 2:13)

. . . that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.  (2 Tim 3:17)

Not only does our Redeemer set us free from sin and bless us daily!  He literally trains, supplies and prepares us with all that we need so that we may complete His will for us and please Him!  Think about what an enormous and miraculous gift that is to each one of us.

He accomplishes this in various ways.  He provides us with Pastors, teachers, missionaries and evangelists who share their testimonies and their wisdom with us.  Our Pastors teach us weekly how to live obediently and victoriously in Jesus.  As we obey the Lord not only do we bring Him glory and honor, but we please Him.

God’s supply comes through our earthly paychecks, salaries, bonuses and incentives as well as through miraculous (unexpected) provision. 

God prepares us through His Word and through His Spirit speaking into our hearts.

And whatever we ask we receive from Him, because we keep His commandments and do those things that are pleasing in His sight.  (1 Joh 3:22)

According to 1 John 3, because we keep the Lord’s Word (commandments) and act in ways that please Him, He hears and answers our prayers.  We serve a good, kind, and loving God!

God Blesses Our Food & Drink

God Blesses Our Food & Drink

How often do we realize that God protects us in many and varied ways, DAILY?  He blesses even our food and drink!  Let’s think about this and see what God says.

So you shall serve the Lord your God, and He will bless your bread and your water. And I will take sickness away from the midst of you. (Ex 23:25) 

God’s promise is to bless [sanctify, approve, validate] everything that we eat and drink as well as to remove [eradicate] sickness and disease from within us.  If we truly believe and stand upon this promise of God, it will operate in our circumstances. 

Why is God’s blessing upon our food important to us? 

Who satisfies your mouth with good things, so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.  (Ps 103:5) 

God not only blesses us with the provision of food to eat, but by His blessing upon our food and drink, God renews our youth day by day, moment-by-moment! 

. . . because they had not met the children of Israel with bread and water, but hired Balaam against them to curse them. However, our God turned the curse into a blessing.  (Neh 13:2)

In Nehemiah 13, God not only set Himself against Israel’s enemies, but He also reversed the curse placed upon His people and He caused the Israelites to be blessed. 

We are God’s New Covenant people and He has given us even BETTER promises than He gave to the people in the Old Testament!  (Heb 8:6)  It’s time to acquaint ourselves with what belongs to us through Jesus, our Lord and Savior!

I encourage you to read the Bible every day to collect and to meditate upon the blessings and precious promises that Jesus suffered and died to purchase for each and every one of His children. 

Preach on the Housetops

Preach on the Housetops

Good day!  As a believer in Jesus Christ, what is your calling or assignment in life?  Well, I’m sure it’s multi-faceted. 

You’re called by God to be a loving and faithful spouse (if married); you’re called to be a loving and responsible parent (if you have kids); you’re to be a good steward of all that God has given to you; you’re to bring glory to God by being a good, diligent worker; AND you’re called to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ. 

As you can see, we all have multiple responsibilities to fulfill in life.  Not the least of these responsibilities, as a servant of Christ, is to share the Good News of the Kingdom of God with everyone as we have opportunity.  We need to stir up our resolve from time to time to actually fulfill this crucial responsibility.

Whatever I tell you in the dark, speak in the light; and what you hear in the ear, preach on the housetops.  (Mt 10:27)  When the Holy Spirit teaches us something through the Scriptures, He would like us to meditate upon it and pray over it; and then share it with others.  In other words, “broadcast” it to the neighborhood.

And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Amen.  (Mt 28:18-20)

We are given the assignment to preach and to make disciples of all nations!  Of course, the Lord will honor our support of our church ministry both in working as a volunteer and in our financial giving.  The Lord also considers us as taking part in preaching the gospel when we financially support ministers, evangelists, and missionaries who travel throughout the world sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ. 

It’s also a good idea to set a goal of some sort—known only to ourselves and God—of how many people we would like to share a testimony with in a given period of time (i.e., a month or a year). 

Any testimony that we share with someone gives them a glimpse of the love and faithfulness of God to us.  Our testimony also demonstrates that we have a strong, personal relationship with Jesus, our Savior; so it is clearly a powerful tool to use.

We’re called to preach on the housetops!  Be blessed!

 

Loving God’s Law

Loving God’s Law

Should we really love “God’s law” (synonymous with “God’s Word”)?  Yes, we should be devoted to God’s Word and regard it as precious to us.  This also means that we choose to live according to and in obedience to God’s Word.

Great peace have those who love Your law, and nothing causes them to stumble.  (Ps 119:165)  In this verse, the word stumble means to be offended.  Studying God’s Word and obeying it will mature us spiritually, mentally, and emotionally.  What a beautiful blessing.

You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on You, because he trusts in You.  (Isa 26:3)  As we focus on the Lord and His love and goodness, He allows His peace to flow into us and to fill us with assurance. 

Her ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace.  (Pro 3:17)  This verse is referring to Wisdom, and 1 Corinthians 1:24 reminds us that Christ is the wisdom of God!  The ways of Christ are peace-filled and pleasant.  Praise His Holy Name!

For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments. And His commandments are not burdensome.  (1 Joh 5:3)  This verse reminds us that when we love God, we obey His Word—and do not consider His Word difficult or oppressive.

The statutes of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart; the commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes; the fear of the Lord is clean, enduring forever; the judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether.  10 More to be desired are they than gold, yea, than much fine gold; sweeter also than honey and the honeycomb.  (Ps 19:8-10)  This passage from the Bible points out that God’s Word blesses us in many ways.  It:

  • Gives us joy,
  • Illuminates concepts of faith for us, and
  • Is better than gold and sweeter than honey for us.

The entire 119th Psalm is all about God’s Word and how it is a blessing to all who love it and obey it.  Study this Psalm and seriously meditate upon its riches.  God bless you!