The Word tells us that God shows Himself strong in behalf of those whose hearts are “perfect” toward Him (2 Chron.16:9). That word “perfect” doesn’t mean that we have to do everything just right and live without making a mistake. Thank God, we don’t have to do that. It means “devoted”–a heart consecrated, dedicated, loyal and faithful to God.
The mistakes we make will not stop God from working in our lives. Only our lack of faithfulness can do that.
Who is faithful? The one who spends his time doing what God has called him to do. Or as Jesus put it, the one who takes up his cross and follows Him. The one who denies his fleshly desires and spends his life on the things God desires him to do.
Maybe God has been urging you to spend more time in His Word and in prayer or dealing with you about ministering more to the people around you. He may be calling you to pray for the sick or to teach the Word. But you’re busy, so you glide on with good intentions and tell God you’ll do it later. Well, later is here!
Decide today that you are going to be the faithful and wise servant. Find out what is stealing your time from the Lord. Serve His interests instead of your own.
Do you want to be a ruler in the household of God? Do you want Him to show Himself strong for you? Then take up Jesus’ thoughts today. Take up His purposes and His plans. Now is the time to be faithful!
THE COST OF LIVING FOR CHRIST :
Luke 9:58 “And Jesus said unto him, Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests; but the Son of man hath not where to lay his head.”
This verse has often been used to support the misconception that Jesus and His disciples lived in poverty. However, in this instance, the fact that Jesus had nowhere to lay His head was because of persecution. The Samaritans, because of a religious prejudice, had just refused Him hospitality and a place to stay as He journeyed to Jerusalem. Persecution is part of the cost of living a Christian life. Jesus was communicating to this man that not having a place to stay at times was part of that cost.
There are many forms of persecution. Having your life threatened because of your faith in Jesus is one way you can be persecuted, but it is not the most damaging. History shows that the Church has always flourished under persecution with increased numbers and zeal. During intense, life-threatening persecution, people’s priorities get straightened out and the Lord assumes His rightful place. This always works for our good, regardless of what our outward circumstances might be.
A far more deadly form of persecution is men simply speaking evil of you or separating you from their company. It’s more deadly because it’s more subtle.
Many who would never directly deny the Lord will fall into self-pity or strife because of someone’s criticism. This will render one just as ineffective as a negative reaction to having one’s life threatened would.
It helps to recognize that it is not you that they are persecuting, but rather Christ in you. You are actually becoming a partaker of His sufferings and will share His rewards. With this in mind, we can actually shout and leap for joy in persecution!
WHO IS THIS MAN?
Our Lord . . . was . . . declared to be the Son of God . . . by the resurrection from the dead. —Romans 1:3-4
When Kelly Steinhaus visited Harvard Square to ask college students what they thought of Jesus, the answers were respectful of Him. One said He was “a person who took care of people.” Another said, “He sounds like a cool guy.” Others rejected Him outright: “He was just a guy. I don’t think He was the Savior.” And “I do not accept any faith system that says, ‘I am the only way to God.’” Some people thoughtfully question who Jesus is and some reject Him.
As Jesus faced death 2,000 years ago, many people mocked the idea that He was anyone special. “They put up over His head the accusation written against Him: ‘THIS IS JESUS THE KING OF THE JEWS’ ” (Matt. 27:37). Those who said, “You who destroy the temple and build it in three days, save Yourself!” (v.40) were doubting His power. The religious people even said, “He saved others; Himself He cannot save” (v.42).
In His death, Jesus may have seemed powerless. But when we read the whole story, we see that He gave His life willingly. He proved Himself to be the Son of God and limitless in power as He burst forth from the tomb. Grasp the value of His death and behold the power of His resurrection. He’s the Savior of the world!
Up from the grave He arose,
With a mighty triumph o’er His foes;
He arose a Victor from the dark domain,
And He lives forever with His saints to reign.
Jesus’ resurrection spelled the death of death.
FAITH AND ACTIONS…
Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see. This is what the ancients were commended for. Hebrews 1:1-2 Was not our father Abraham considered righteous for what he did when he offered his son Isaac on the altar? You see that his faith and his actions were working together, and his faith was made complete by what he did. And the scripture was fulfilled that says, “Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness,” and he was called God’s friend. James 2:21-23
So also Abraham “believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness.” Understand, then, that those who have faith are children of Abraham. Galatians 3:6-7
We accept human testimony, but God’s testimony is greater because it is the testimony of God, which he has given about his Son. Whoever believes in the Son of God accepts this testimony. Whoever does not believe God has made him out to be a liar, because they have not believed the testimony God has given about his Son. And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. 1 John 5:9-11
In him and through faith in him we may approach God with freedom and confidence. 1 Peter 1:21
God gets all the Glory, AMEN!!!
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