Sunday, August 18, 2013

Stand and Proclaim

But, beloved, remember ye the words which were spoken before of the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ;  How that they told you there should be mockers in the last time, who should walk after their own ungodly lusts. 
Jude 1:17-18

We need to wake up, grow up and get into the word of God if we, as ambassadors of the Kingdom, are to not only bring the lost to God, but also keep the ungodly from infiltration and ambushments.   When we are not alert, some creep in unaware!  This is an actual conversation of how the enemy will try to creep in:  It began with a question, 

How well do you know Jesus?   

I stand wholeheartedly on the word of God - or Bible as it is commonly called.  I do believe that there was a man named Jesus (which was the word of God):

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.  The same was in the beginning with God.   John 1:1-2

And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.  John 1:14
And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God.  Revelation 19:13

He was sent by God to be the final propitiation for our sins; that He was crucified and was resurrected unto all power and glory:  

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

The bible tells us that everything we do should be done in the name of Jesus: 

And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.  Colossians 3:17

So in accepting God as the head of our life, we are baptized in the name of Jesus, 

Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.  John 3:5

Then Peter said unto them, Repent , and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. Acts 2:38

We pray in the name of Jesus, we look to Jesus as our Lord and Savior and we do it because it is what God requires according to His word. 

The only hope we have in eternal life with God is through Jesus.  It is in His word:  

Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.  John 14:6

Peter was able to stand before his accusers and bluntly and emphatically say:

Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God raised from the dead, even by him doth this man stand here before you whole. This is the stone which was set at nought of you builders, which is become the head of the corner. Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.   Acts 4:10-12 

 In reference to the title 'savior' being applied to Jesus: 

Anyone who has read the Bible with just a little inkling of understanding knows that when one calls on the name of Jesus, they are not referring to Moses or Joshua or David or Sampson because none of these men (although they may have saved their people from a particular situation) were able to say, as Jesus did, 

Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am.   John 8:58

Jesus revealed himself to the Jews - He said, "before Abraham was, I am."  A lot of people don't understand that or they think that it is grammatically incorrect.  But when your understanding is opened and through your faith you believe that 
"in the beginning was the word, and the word was with God and the word was God. He was with God in the beginning. . . and the word became flesh and dwelt among us - then you can understand what Jesus meant by that statement.  What an awesome revelation!  They didn't understand because they were living according to the law and were so steeped in their customs and traditions that they had lost their relationship with God.  Jesus had revealed Himself before to them when He said:  

He who belongs to God hears what God says. The reason you do not hear is that you do not belong to God.  John 8:47

It definitely takes faith to believe!  But once you get it, no one can take it away from you!  Like Apostle Paul, we should think ourselves happy on this one!

You have to believe every single word that God inspired man to write.  In particular, the way God makes Himself known in the book of Isaiah:   

I am the Lord, and there is none else, there is no God beside me: I girded thee, though thou hast not known me: That they may know from the rising of the sun, and from the west, that there is none beside me. I am the Lord, and there is none else. I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the Lord do all these things. Drop down, ye heavens, from above, and let the skies pour down righteousness: let the earth open, and let them bring forth salvation, and let righteousness spring up together; I the Lord have created it.  Isaiah 45:5-8

For thus saith the Lord that created the heavens; God himself that formed the earth and made it; he hath established it, he created it not in vain, he formed it to be inhabited: I am the Lord; and there is none else. I have not spoken in secret, in a dark place of the earth: I said not unto the seed of Jacob, Seek ye me in vain: I the Lord speak righteousness, I declare things that are right. Assemble yourselves and come; draw near together, ye that are escaped of the nations: they have no knowledge that set up the wood of their graven image, and pray unto a god that cannot save. Tell ye, and bring them near; yea, let them take counsel together: who hath declared this from ancient time? who hath told it from that time? have not I the Lord? and there is no God else beside me; a just God and a Saviour; there is none beside me. Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I am God, and there is none else. I have sworn by myself, the word is gone out of my mouth in righteousness, and shall not return, That unto me every knee shall bow, every tongue shall swear. Isaiah 45:17-23

We cannot doubt His word, we must choose to believe His word.  We must do this willingly now.  We don't want to be caught in the end the way Apostle Paul describes:  

For it is written , As I live , saith the Lord , every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God.  Romans 14:11

It was because of what Jesus did at Calvary that makes it possible for us to now have the spirit of God residing within us - just as He promised that when He departed this world in human form that He would send back the comforter (Holy Spirit):  

But when the Comforter is come , whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me:  John 15:26

Why can't you use some other source; why the bible?

We must understand that the Bible is a handbook or a guide to developing a true, meaningful relationship with God and no matter how one tries to demote, renege, negate, change, or denounce the Bible, it's truths bring about a better way of life through our Lord and Savior.  It brings about an elevated lifestyle that does not involve the base things of life.  It brings you out of bondage physically and mentally and begins your journey toward eternal salvation.  

This is just such a personal thing; your relationship with God.  And because our relationship, based on our experience and our knowledge of the word of God is so personal, we should have this same attitude as Apostle Paul who stated: 

Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword?  As it is written: "For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered."  No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.  For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers,
neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.  Romans 8:35-39

Our personal response to reading any other material outside of the word of God, no matter what the other material says, no matter who says it; no matter how learned they are, should not change our stance.   We are to  stand wholeheartedly on the word of God as it is written.

Just as we don't discount what anyone may say as far as what they have read and what their reading has lead them to conclude, likewise, we desire that no one discount the faith that we have to believe the word of God as recorded in the Bible.  Anyone that does not have the same faith (not referring to a religion or denomination) that we have, are encouraged to follow Christ and watch how God moves, leads, and blesses your life; not for your good but for His glory - so that others can see the God in you and desire Him also as their Lord and Savior.  Faith is a funny thing;  it takes faith to believe God and to believe that His word is true and so our prayer constantly is that even while we have faith, help our unbelief in those things that our mind does not fully understand or comprehend, but never waver in our faith of God.  He is too real and has moved too mightily to doubt Him.
Faith does not nullify facts but what it allows is the ability to see those things that are not as though they are!  That's why it takes faith to believe.  An example of this is the young man who woke early in the morning and saw that his territory was surrounded by enemy soldiers as they prepared to destroy them.  He ran and told his master, Elisha, what he saw.  Elisha, being full of faith in God, told the young man not to be afraid as there were more for them than those against them and then he prayed for the young man that God open his eyes so that he might see.  God opened the man's eyes and he was able to see them surrounded by horses and chariots in their defense.   Elisha's faith was so great that he did not need a physical manifestation to know that God would protect them (he had the spiritual ability to see what was not apparent to the young man).  The young man, because his faith was not there, needed that physical manifestation before he could believe.  After reading that account, are you inspired to increase your faith in God?  My faith lets me know that these accounts are not made up, they are real and inspired by God to be written by man.    The word tells us to have faith.  You have to hear and how can you hear except you be taught.
Absolutely nothing will change my stance.  
  • When the spirit of God stands up in you and fights for you and makes things possible for you that you know within yourself should not have happened, 
  • when He speaks a word to you and then confirms it through a total stranger, 
  • when He allows you to see things that you would normally not see, 
  • when He takes away the depression, the oppression, the anger and rage and anxiety and deviant appetites 
and replaces those negative things with His peace and His joy and you wonder how in the world can you be at peace - you have to know that it is God.  You can't fully understand or appreciate God from any piece of paper or a book or from a literary or intellectual perspective, you have to know Him in spirit because He is spirit.  You can learn of Him from paper but to know him you have to connect with Him; not through the intellect but through the spirit.  The relationship that you develop with Him doesn't come from the intellect. 
Personal commentary:  Believe it or not, I have read many other versions and commentaries on God and the validity of His existence and in times past, I have to admit, that like Agrippa, I was almost persuaded (Acts 26:28), but it's that thing that is within me - that's the part that I don't think you are hearing or understanding - it's bigger than what I read.  It's not an eye-opener for me to read other's ideologies no matter how steeped they are in proof. As far as the changes in my life, I'm not referring to self-help programs; those things that I can accomplish on my own, I am referring to those things that were not humanly possible, things that happened that could only be referred to as divine intervention, things that don't have plausible explanations and go beyond the intellect or rational thinking.  That's thinking outside the box; allowing your mind to travel where the intellect doesn't want to go because the intellect wants everything to be neatly boxed and everything to have a plausible explanation backed with earthly truths or facts.   

Praise God for His word and for grace to have faith to believe!




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