“The Helmet of Salvation” 4/04/2017 Written by bruce r. mills for “God’s group”

“Our Daily Bread” http://odb.org

The Daily Devotions of Greg Laurie    http://www.harvest.org/devotional

                                   Image result for picture of the helmet of salvation Bible

Written by bruce r. mills for “God’s group”  @  www.Godsmanforever.com

(revised from 1/19/2011)

“The Helmet of Salvation… Part 2 of God’s Armor” 

   (For the first  2 days writing…type 4/02-03/2017, as separate dates into the search window of   www.Godsmanforever.com)

Ephesians 6:17… And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; (NKJV)

I woke up this morning, and before I even had a chance to ask God to guide me through this day, I knew what I was going to write on today… I had been writing about scripture in the Book of Romans, but was sidetracked by the Armor of God, each and every Christian should  be wearing as a complete set…all 6 pieces…(Ephesians 6:10-20)   [ https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=eph6%3A10-20&version=ESV ]

In looking at my own weaknesses as a Christian, I am hopeful that others can find out what pieces they are missing of the “Whole Armor of God”, to be able to make a stand against Satan… To be Spirit filled on a more  consistent basis, I believe it’s necessary to be wearing God’s complete set of spiritual armor…   As Christians, any chinks in God’s armor will allow Satan in, and leave a crack in our fragile clay vessel… Our cup cannot be filled to overflowing with the Holy Spirit, if we have any cracks in it…

The apostle Paul tells us in this, in…Ephesians 6:11… “Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.” (NKJV)

The opening scripture talks about “the helmet of salvation”…   Salvation; or being saved by God’s grace, is all about obeying the Gospel of Christ…   We must understand the gospel, and respond to God’s calling…or we will be left to “die in our sins”, as the Apostle John pens this spoken by Jesus, in…  [See 1. Below for the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ]

John 8:24 “Therefore I said to you that you will die in your sins; for if you do not believe that I am He, you will die in your sins.”  (NKJV)

But once we are “Born Again” Christians, we must keep “the helmet of salvation” on 24/7…   Each and every day, we must be thankful for the grace God has gifted us with, as we have been accepted by Him into His family as a redeemed child of God…

As ambassadors of Christ, we must always look for opportunities to share the gospel of Christ with the lost and dying world around us…  This, for sure, was one of my major shortcomings for over 7 years, as I have previously confessed…because I allowed the Holy Spirit to take a back seat in my life…keeping me less than Spirit filled…Ephesians 5:18-20

Heavenly Father, being Spirit filled is what every Christian should strive to become on a consistent, but not perfect basis… Help each and every reader understand that Your complete set of spiritual armor is required, to protect us from Satan… It starts with “the helmet of salvation”… Help us Father to be striving to put on Your protective armor piece by piece…

Help us to realize that any chinks in our spiritual body armor will leave us vulnerable to Satan, and his bag full of tricks to deceive us…   Being Spirit filled is an ongoing, daily labor of love for You Lord, as Your obedient children walk in the Spirit…Galatians 5:16…   Help us Father, to keep our fragile clay vessel filled to overflowing with the Holy Spirit…  I pray for this fullness of Christ within each and every one of us, in Jesus’ most precious name and for His sake I pray…Amen…

Blessings in Christ,   bruce

 

References:

 

  1.  Here is a link for this most important days writing, about how God’s grace is received to become a Christian in God’s eyes; through understanding and obeying the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ…https://godsmanforever.com/2014/10/26/the-truth-about-sin-10262014-by-bruce-reposted-from-7112013/

 

Picture credit:  https://www.google.com/search?q=picture+of+the+helmet+of+salvation+Bible&espv=2&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjSpOXs24rTAhVG0iYKHYAKD10QsAQIGQ&biw=1126&bih=686#imgrc=Hvsl7EgqC555oM:

 

 

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“The Source of Wisdom” 9/25/2018 Posted by Alister Begg for “Truth for Life”

“Our Daily Bread”     http://odb.org/

 The Daily Devotions of Greg Laurie    http://www.harvest.org/devotional

     Image result for picture wisdom comes from God

 

Posted by Alister Begg for “Truth for Life”  @  http://info.truthforlife.org

Original post @  https://info.truthforlife.org/devo-sept25-2018?ecid=ACsprvuY04Iv1MEv-ki1T7PL5JJDGKEcHHBv_84BeTuhXGnSOgrv25RvguWDPMXWVFND0JLGk_Mr&utm_campaign=Daily%20Devotion%20Emails&utm_source=hs_email&utm_medium=email&utm_content=66143620&_hsenc=p2ANqtz-8qx3yKgjwhStLZ-uEioPTG01g2fWC9R1EbcXB9ettqPvxQs82YClUtj6h9YC2l1Pe5b7OV1s1ljaSyz6FrE51O87VmEdzPXBW5WfqfBQs93v_c8-Y&_hsmi=66143620

 

DAILY DEVOTIONAL SEPTEMBER 25, 2018

The Source of Wisdom

 

Whom God made our wisdom.
1 Corinthians 1:30

Man’s intellect seeks for peace and by nature seeks it apart from the Lord Jesus Christ. Men of education are apt, even when converted, to look upon the simplicities of the cross of Christ with too little reverence and love. They are trapped in the old net in which the Greeks were taken and have a hankering to mix philosophy with revelation.

The temptation with a man of refined thought and high education is to depart from the simple truth of Christ crucified and to invent, as the term is, a more intellectual doctrine. This led the early Christian churches into Gnosticism and bewitched them with all sorts of heresies. This is the root of unorthodoxy and the other high-sounding notions that in the past were so fashionable in Germany and are now so enthralling to certain classes of divines. Whoever you are, good reader, and whatever your education may be, if you are the Lord’s, rest assured that you will find no peace in philosophizing divinity.

You may receive the dogma of one great thinker or the dream of another profound reasoner, but what the chaff is to the wheat is what these notions are to the pure Word of God. Reason at its best can only discover the ABCs of truth, and even that lacks certainty, while in Christ Jesus there is treasured up all the fullness of wisdom and knowledge. All attempts on the part of Christians to be content with the systems that Unitarian and liberal-church thinkers approve of must fail; true heirs of heaven must come back to the grandly simple reality that makes the plowboys eye flash with joy and rejoices the pious pauper’s heart—”Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners.”1 Jesus satisfies the most elevated intellect when He is believingly received, but apart from Him the mind of the regenerate discovers no rest. “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge.”2 “All those who practice it have a good understanding.”3

1)1 Timothy 1:15
2) Proverbs 1:7
3) Psalm 111:10

One-Year Bible Reading Plan

Devotional material is taken from “Morning and Evening,” written by C.H. Spurgeon, revised and updated by Alistair Begg. Copyright © 2003, Good News Publishers and used by Truth For Life with written permission.

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P.S. (from bruce)   If you’re not a “born again” Christian, is the Holy Spirit urging you to open this link ??  Here is the truth for this most important days writing, about how God’s grace is received to become a Christian in God’s eyes; through understanding and obeying the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ…   https://godsmanforever.com/2016/12/19/the-gospel-of-our-lord-jesus-christ-12182016-written-by-bruce-r-mills/

To my brothers and sisters in Christ, please feel free to share this message of the cross with those in need…

Picture credit:  https://www.google.com/search?q=picture+wisdom+comes+from+God&rlz=1C1VFKB_enUS610US619&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwjJndeVitbdAhVym-AKHRm-CfsQsAR6BAgDEAE#imgrc=Hx-6GHek8i0hjM:

 

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“The LORD is Near to All Who Call on Him” 9/24/2018 Posted by David Kitz for “I Love the Psalms”

“Our Daily Bread”     http://odb.org

The Daily Devotions of Greg Laurie    http://www.harvest.org/devotional

                    Image result for picture cry to God for help

Posted by David Kitz for “I Love the Psalms” @  https://davidkitz.wordpress.com/

Original post found @  https://davidkitz.blog/2018/09/24/the-lord-is-near-to-all-who-call-on-him/

 

The LORD is Near to All Who Call on Him

 

 

Reading: Psalm 145
(Verses 17-21)

The LORD is righteous in all his ways
and faithful in all he does.
The LORD is near to all who call on him,
to all who call on him in truth.
He fulfills the desires of those who fear him;
he hears their cry and saves them.
The LORD watches over all who love him,
but all the wicked he will destroy.
My mouth will speak in praise of the LORD.
Let every creature praise his holy name
for ever and ever (NIV).

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The mouth of Green’s Creek, Ottawa, ON — photo by David Kitz

Reflection
Psalm 145 begins with David calling us to praise the LORD, and it ends with a similar call to praise. David extols the virtues of the LORD. He sees Him as righteous and faithful. One can have these virtues, but still be distant or aloof. But that’s not how David sees the LORD.

David knows his God hears him when he prays. How does he know this? For David this isn’t an answer he learned from a textbook. He knows God hears prayer from personal experience. In his daily life David called out to the LORD over and over again in times of trouble, and over and over again the LORD helped him. That’s why he can record the following words in this psalm of praise: He fulfills the desires of those who fear him; he hears their cry and saves them.

What about you? Have you discovered from personal experience that God answers prayer? Have you called out to the LORD in a time of trouble? Has He brought help your way?

Just this week my wife lost/misplaced her driver’s license. This produced some anxious moments as she discovered this loss just as she was about to board a flight across the country. She had arranged a car rental at her destination, but without her driver’s license she could not access the car. Some desperate prayers were offered up and in due course, after she arrived at her destination, the answer came. The driver’s license was found.

Do we involve the LORD in our day to day activities? That should be the norm. Here is David’s testimony—the testimony of Holy Scripture: The LORD is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth.

That should be our testimony in the daily grind of life, in the ups and the downs. The LORD is near 365 days of the year. Before Jesus ascended to heaven, he left his disciples with these words of assurance, Surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age” (Matthew 28:20). We can rest assured that He is as near as our next breath.

Response: LORD God, I am so glad that You are not distant or aloof from those who call out to You. You are near to me. You answer prayer. My mouth will speak in praise of the LORDAmen.

Your Turn: Can you testify that the LORD is near and He answers prayer?

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P.S. (from bruce)   If you’re not a “born again” Christian, is the Holy Spirit urging you to open this link ??  Here is the truth for this most important days writing, about how God’s grace is received to become a Christian in God’s eyes; through understanding and obeying the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ…   https://godsmanforever.com/2016/12/19/the-gospel-of-our-lord-jesus-christ-12182016-written-by-bruce-r-mills/

To my brothers and sisters in Christ, please feel free to share this message of the cross with those in need…

Picture credit:   https://www.google.com/search?q=picture+cry+to+God+for+help&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwi36dnw0rHdAhUinOAKHQ-dCmwQsAR6BAgFEAE&biw=1707&bih=788#imgrc=rXgJXK2s6RzhlM:

 

 

 

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“FINDING THE RIGHT WORDS” 9/23/2018 Written by Kathy Boecher for “atimetoshare”

“Our Daily Bread”     http://odb.org

The Daily Devotions of Greg Laurie    http://www.harvest.org/devotional    

                     Image result for picture Lord heal our land 

Written by Kathy Boecher for “atimetoshare” @   http://atimetoshare.me

Original post @  https://atimetoshare.me/2018/09/22/finding-the-right-words/#like-45720

 

FINDING THE RIGHT WORDS

words

 “Our society strives to avoid any possibility of offending anyone, except God.”  Billy Graham

Our nation has become so politically correct that we’ve almost become numb to the evil  insidiously wheedling its way into the fiber of our existence.  Nothing shocks anymore.  We’re exposed to corruption, scandal, violence, immorality, excess, addiction and the breakdown of the family.  We have been led to believe that we must tolerate the things that others do – no matter how distasteful.  We’re expected to accept all beliefs and behavior.  We’re told to be open to every opinion, action and belief – except to the One true God who created the World.

Our political arena is filled with name calling and “he said, she said” truths or untruths. We used to believe the news media, but over the past fifty years or so, that has been tarnished along with everything else that once was believable.  Today it seems that our very tolerant society has no qualms about slandering others.  They have no problem destroying another’s reputation with innuendo and suspicion.

Schools are inciting young minds.  The workplace has turned into a “protected” environment where every word can be judged against us.  The family can be anything from two male partners raising children – to single, unmarried parents – divorced or separated couples that create even more confusion for the children – and even parentless families, where children have to take on the responsibility of parenting. The days of Leave it to Beaver are long gone.

We as a nation have put God on the back burner.  To many He simply doesn’t exist because He isn’t visible and there’s nothing tangible to prove His existence.  To some, they’ve turned things or beliefs into gods.  Unfortunately, the God upon which our nation was founded, can’t even be spoken of in the political arena, the legal system, public schools, the entertainment business or sporting events without criticism – however, there seems to be an insistence that we tolerate every other god out there, except the One True God.

As Christians, we’ve been pushed aside and often persecuted for our beliefs.  It’s really time for us to take a stand.  We will have to choose our words wisely, so that we don’t offend.  We’ll need to rely on God’s Word, the Bible, to guide us.  We must call on the triune God to help us. The world seems to be gaining more and more strength each day, but we have a defense that has no boundaries.  End of the story – God wins!

Lord, I know you can conquer any evil that inhabits this planet.  We, as your people, need to be strong and courageous in our faith.  Help us to stand up for you and your precepts.  Gives us the perseverance to uphold your truths.  Even if we face ridicule or death, help us continue to keep you alive in a society that doesn’t seem to need you anymore.  Your will be done.  Amen.

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P.S. (from bruce)   If you’re not a “born again” Christian, is the Holy Spirit urging you to open this link ??  Here is the truth for this most important days writing, about how God’s grace is received to become a Christian in God’s eyes; through understanding and obeying the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ…   https://godsmanforever.com/2016/12/19/the-gospel-of-our-lord-jesus-christ-12182016-written-by-bruce-r-mills/

To my brothers and sisters in Christ, please feel free to share this message of the cross with those in need…

Picture credit:  https://www.google.com/search?q=picture+Lord+heal+our+land&rlz=1C1VFKB_enUS610US619&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwj-yo_NlM_dAhVqc98KHZomAAwQsAR6BAgFEAE&biw=1209&bih=884#imgrc=qyW7PSMPBeg3_M:

 

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“How can we experience true freedom in Christ?” 9/22/2018 Posted by www.gotquestions.org

“Our Daily Bread”     http://odb.org/

The Daily Devotions of Greg Laurie    http://www.harvest.org/devotional

Image result for picture John 8:32

Posted by www.gotquestions.org

Original post @  https://www.gotquestions.org/QOTW.htm

Today, I add my own thoughts to help answer this proposed question…  Yes becoming a “born again” Christian will break the chains of sin and shame that Satan has bound us with our entire lives…  But being set free from the bonds of Satan is just the beginning of a life long process of called “progressive sanctification”…  [See 1. below]

Look closely at this scripture above…  “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples.  THEN you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free”…  We are called to be disciples of Christ…  This means we are to be followers of Jesus Christ…  The only way we can truly be set free, is when we are living for the Lord as “Spirit filled” Christians (Galatians 5:16)…  We can be “born again” but not disciples of Jesus Christ…  If Jesus Christ is not Lord of our lives (meaning He is in total charge of our lives through the FULL power of the Holy Spirit), we are sinning…  This is known as the sin of omission, as we read in…James 4:7…  [See 2. below for a good description of the sin of omission] & [See 3. below for an excellent commentary on walking in and by the FULL power of the Holy Spirit]

I speak about this often overlooked sin, out of my own live experiences…  I was “born again” on June 02, 2002…  But I didn’t submit my life to God, to take total charge of my life for 7 years and 2 days…  You can read my own testimony about this in a days writing I titled…”God’s Duo”, [See 4. below], for exactly how I was set free to live a Spirit filled life most of the time…

Heavenly Father, I pray that my fellow “born again” readers will take the time to understand the need to live for Christ, as Lord and Master of their lives…to truly be set free to walk in and by the Full power of the Holy Spirit…  It is only by becoming a disciple for Christ…living by our choice to allow the Holy Spirit to control our every move…that we can truly be free in Christ…  I pray for this awakening of this most important need in ALL of your redeemed children…in Jesus’ name, and for His sake…Amen…

Blessings in Christ,  bruce

 

Question: “How can we experience true freedom in Christ?”

Answer: Everyone seeks freedom. Especially in the West, freedom is the highest virtue, and it is sought after by all who are, or consider themselves to be, oppressed. But freedom in Christ is not the same as political or economic freedom. In fact, some of the most harshly oppressed people in history have had complete freedom in Christ. The Bible tells us that, spiritually speaking, no one is free. In Romans 6, Paul explains that we are all slaves. We are either slaves to sin or slaves to righteousness. Those who are slaves to sin cannot free themselves from it, but once we are freed from the penalty and power of sin through the cross, we become a different kind of slave, and in that slavery we find complete peace and true freedom.

Although it seems like a contradiction, the only true freedom in Christ comes to those who are His slaves. Slavery has come to mean degradation, hardship, and inequality. But the biblical paradigm is the true freedom of the slave of Christ who experiences joy and peace, the products of the only true freedom we will ever know in this life. There are 124 occurrences in the New Testament of the word doulos, which means “someone who belongs to another” or “bondslave with no ownership rights of his own.” Unfortunately, most modern Bible versions, as well as the King James Version, most often translate doulos as “servant” or “bond-servant.” But a servant is one who works for wages, and who, by virtue of his work, is owed something from his master. The Christian, on the other hand, has nothing to offer the Lord in payment for his forgiveness, and he is totally owned by the Master who bought him with His shed blood on the cross. Christians are purchased by that blood and are the possession of their Lord and Savior. We are not hired by Him; we belong to Him (Romans 8:9; 1 Corinthians 7:4). So “slave” is really the only proper translation of the word doulos.

Far from being oppressed, the slave of Christ is truly free. We have been set free from sin by the Son of God who said, “If the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed” (John 8:36). Now the Christian can truly say, along with Paul, “Through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death” (Romans 8:2). We now know the truth and that truth has set us free (John 8:32). Paradoxically, through our bondage to Christ, we have also become sons and heirs of the Most High God (Galatians 4:1–7). As heirs, we are partakers of that inheritance—eternal life—which God confers on all His children. This is a privilege beyond any earthly treasure we could ever inherit, while those in bondage to sin inherit only spiritual death and an eternity in hell.

Why, then, do so many Christians live as though they are still in bondage? For one thing, we often rebel against our Master, refusing to obey Him and clinging to our old lives. We hold on to the sins that once bound us to Satan as our master. Because our new nature still lives in the old fleshly nature, we are still drawn to sin. Paul tells the Ephesians to “put off” the old self with its deceit and corruption and “put on” the new self with its righteousness. Put off lying, and put on truthfulness. Put off stealing, and put on usefulness and work. Put off bitterness, rage, and anger, and put on kindness, compassion, and forgiveness (Ephesians 4:22–32). We have been set free from the bondage of sin, but we often put the chains back on because part of us loves the old life.

Furthermore, often we don’t realize that we have been crucified with Christ (Galatians 2:20) and that we have been reborn as completely new creatures (2 Corinthians 5:17). The Christian life is one of death to self and rising to “walk in the newness of life” (Romans 6:4), and that new life is characterized by thoughts about Him who saved us, not thoughts about the dead flesh that has been crucified with Christ. When we are continually thinking about ourselves and indulging the flesh in sins we have been freed from, we are essentially carrying around a corpse, full of rottenness and death. The only way to bury it fully is by the power of the Spirit who is the only source of strength. We strengthen the new nature by continually feeding on the Word of God, and through prayer we obtain the power we need to escape the desire to return to the old life of sin. Then we will realize that our new status as slaves to Christ is the only true freedom, and we will call upon His power to “not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its evil desires” (Romans 6:12).

Recommended Resource: Slave: The Hidden Truth About Your Identity in Christ by John MacArthur

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References:

  1. “Progressive Sanctification”-  https://www.gotquestions.org/progressive-sanctification.html

  2. “Sin of Omission”-  https://www.gotquestions.org/sin-of-omission.html

  3. “Walking in the Spirit”-  https://bible.org/seriespage/5-spirit-work-spirit-filled-life

  1. My personal testamony-  “God’s Duo”… https://godsmanforever.wordpress.com/2013/02/25/gods-group-thoughts-for-2252013-gods-duo/

P.S. (from bruce)   If you’re not a “born again” Christian, is the Holy Spirit urging you to open this link ??  Here is the truth for this most important days writing, about how God’s grace is received to become a Christian in God’s eyes; through understanding and obeying the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ…   https://godsmanforever.com/2016/12/19/the-gospel-of-our-lord-jesus-christ-12182016-written-by-bruce-r-mills/

To my brothers and sisters in Christ, please feel free to share this message of the cross with those in need…

Picture credit:  https://www.google.com/search?q=picture+John+8:32&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwin38behc3dAhVSNd8KHbhEDJ8QsAR6BAgFEAE&biw=1277&bih=745#imgrc=dOqa9n8tOLOogM:

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“How’s Your Vision?” 9/21/2018 Written by Beth Andrews for “Deeper Roots”

“Our Daily Bread”     http://odb.org

The Daily Devotions of Greg Laurie    http://www.harvest.org/devotional

                             Image result for picture heb 12:2

Written by Beth Andrews for “Deeper Roots”  @  https://dbethandrews.wordpress.com

Original post @  https://dbethandrews.wordpress.com/2018/09/20/hows-your-vision/

How’s Your Vision?

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“Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith.”  Hebrews 12:2

I’ve worn glasses since I was in the fifth grade.  I remember vividly the difference in my vision from the day before to the day after I got them.  The teacher’s handwriting on the board improved overnight! The power of vision – the ability to see clearly – was driven home to me recently when I got new glasses after 8 years.  The difference in my old prescription and the new one was so great I had a headache for a week trying to adjust.  It’s hard to see clearly when you’re looking through a weak lens.

Likewise our spiritual vision – how we see God – affects the way we see ourselves, our challenges, and our successes or failures.  Consider the Israelite spies in Numbers 13.  Upon returning from their mission, ten of the twelve spies advised against attempting to take the land the Lord had promised them.  They compared themselves to the Canaanites and saw themselves as “grasshoppers in our own eyes” (vv. 32-33).  They talked themselves out of the Promised Land because they were convinced that they were outmatched and too small.  Only Caleb and Joshua had a different vision, “The land we passed through and explored is exceedingly good. Do not be afraid of the people of the land . . . the Lord is with us” (Numbers 14:7-9).  They saw the same giants and the same challenges, but they saw them with faith.  They focused on the power and the promise of the Lord and knew that the giants were no match for their mighty God.

In contrast to the ten Israelite spies, consider how little David defeated the giant Goliath.  You know this story well – David heard Goliath’s disgraceful taunting of the Israelite army, and armed with a sling and a few stones he confronted the giant.  But his confidence wasn’t in his sling or the stones or his own ability—his confidence was in God.  He stood before Goliath and declared, “You come against me with sword and spear and javelin, but I come against you in the name of the Lord Almighty . . . it is not by sword or spear that the Lord saves:  for the battle is the Lord’s and He will give all of you into our hands” (1 Samuel 17:45, 47).  He knew God was mighty and He knew God was for Israel.  How could he lose?

We see the same confident thinking in Paul’s letter to the Romans: “If God is for us, who can be against 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 8:31, 38-39, emphasis added).  Where did Paul’s confidence come from?  The great vision he had of God through Jesus Christ.  He was so certain of God’s love because he had seen that love displayed on the cross.  Though his physical eyes were weak and failing, he had perfect 20-20 spiritual vision.

You and I need good vision to navigate life.  We need to view everything through the spiritual lens of truth.  Instead of focusing on the size of our challenges we need to “fix our eyes on Jesus.”  Rather than seeing ourselves as grasshoppers among giants, we need to see the bigness of our God, towering over everything that threatens us.  Beloved, how long have you struggled with weak spiritual eyes?  Is it time for some new lenses?  Maybe it’s time to have your eyes examined by the Holy Spirit so He can prescribe some divine glasses.  Oh Father, give us holy vision to see you like we’ve never seen you before!

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P.S. (from bruce)   If you’re not a “born again” Christian, is the Holy Spirit urging you to open this link ??  Here is the truth for this most important days writing, about how God’s grace is received to become a Christian in God’s eyes; through understanding and obeying the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ…   https://godsmanforever.com/2016/12/19/the-gospel-of-our-lord-jesus-christ-12182016-written-by-bruce-r-mills/

To my brothers and sisters in Christ, please feel free to share this message of the cross with those in need…

Picture credit:  https://www.google.com/search?q=picture+heb+12:2&rlz=1C1VFKB_enUS610US619&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwjZhouF_svdAhWumuAKHd4WAfsQsAR6BAgGEAE&biw=1209&bih=884#imgrc=ieFSoBxdqwVtGM:

 

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“Generous or Selfish?” 9/20/2018 Posted by Don Merritt for “The Life Project”

“Our Daily Bread”     http://odb.org

The Daily Devotions of Greg Laurie http://www.harvest.org/devotional

        Image result for picture love covers a multitude of sins

Posted by Don Merritt  for “The Life Project” @  https://lifereference.wordpress.com

Original post @  https://lifereference.wordpress.com/2018/09/19/generous-or-selfish-2/

Generous or Selfish?

The end of all things is near; therefore, be of sound judgment and sober spirit for the purpose of prayer. Above all, keep fervent in your love for one another, because love covers a multitude of sins. Be hospitable to one another without complaint. As each one has received a special gift, employ it in serving one another as good stewards of the manifold grace of God. Whoever speaks, is to do so as one who is speaking the utterances of God; whoever serves is to do so as one who is serving by the strength which God supplies; so that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom belongs the glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.

1 Peter 4:7-11

In approaching this text, you can go one of two ways. The first and most common way of looking at it is to analyze it line by line and word by word.  The second is to read it in its entirety and ask yourself what Peter is getting at. Both approaches should take us to the same place, but sometimes we become sidetracked in the details and forget why we are looking in the first place. Thus, for this lesson, let’s use the second and less common method.  What’s Peter trying to say here?

I think it is something like this: Set aside selfish things so that you may glorify God.

Let’s go back and check…

He starts by telling us that time is short, so let’s get serious: The end of all things is near; therefore, be of sound judgment and sober spirit for the purpose of prayer Yes, this is an easy one… Then he reminds us to love one another with fervor.  Such love is never selfish, for selfish, ‘what I can get out of it’ love, is never “fervent.” This is even clearer when you read the second part of the sentence, for it points directly to forgiveness. Forgiving those whom we love fervently is a selfless act. Here’s how Peter put it:  Above all, keep fervent in your love for one another, because love covers a multitude of sins.

Then he tells us to be hospitable without complaint, and since the Greek word can also be rendered as “generous” it’s clear once again that Peter wants us to be selfless. Here are his words:  Be hospitable to one another without complaint. “Without complaint” seals this one for me, how about you?  He goes on to mention that we have each received a special (spiritual) gift from God, and then tells us to use it for the building up of the Body as good stewards, not for our own advancement.  As each one has received a special gift, employ it in serving one another as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.

Now it gets really interesting. If we speak, we are to speak as though our words were the Word of God, so I see that they are not just my own words, my own thoughts any more. If we serve, we should serve like we are serving from God’s strength and not our own.  This would seem to imply that we are to serve for God’s purpose, since He supplied our strength: whoever speaks, is to do so as one who is speaking the utterances of God; whoever serves is to do so as one who is serving by the strength which God supplies; nothing of “me” here…

Finally, we have arrived at the “why” part, so that God will be glorified: so that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom belongs the glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.

Looking back to where we started, I’d say we got it just about right!  Living for Jesus in love is all about God and other people, and not at all about me. Lord, may each of us take this message from your Word to heart!

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P.S. (from bruce)   If you’re not a “born again” Christian, is the Holy Spirit urging you to open this link ??  Here is the truth for this most important days writing, about how God’s grace is received to become a Christian in God’s eyes; through understanding and obeying the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ…   https://godsmanforever.com/2016/12/19/the-gospel-of-our-lord-jesus-christ-12182016-written-by-bruce-r-mills/

To my brothers and sisters in Christ, please feel free to share this message of the cross with those in need…

Picture credit:  https://www.google.com/search?q=picture+love+covers+a+multitude+of+sins&rlz=1C1VFKB_enUS610US619&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwjB8vmT38fdAhWRON8KHcuXDIEQsAR6BAgGEAE&biw=1205&bih=833#imgrc=uAh4aC0jo-hPqM:

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Quick Devotional from Philippians 4:13 (Observation from the Greek)” 9/19/2018 Posted by Pastor Jim Lee for “THE DOMAIN FOR TRUTH”

“Our Daily Bread”     http://odb.org

The Daily Devotions of Greg Laurie    http://www.harvest.org/devotional

Image result for picture our strength comes from God

Posted by Pastor Jim Lee forThe Domain for Truth” @  https://veritasdomain.wordpress.com

Original post @  https://veritasdomain.wordpress.com/2018/09/18/quick-devotional-from-philippians-413-observation-from-the-greek/

Quick Devotional from Philippians 4:13 (Observation from the Greek)

This is from my daily Greek exercise of sight reading a few months ago, courtesy of Vincent S Artale Jr.

Our text is from the Greek translation of Philippians 4:13.  Here is my translation:

“SENTENCE 13 πάντα ἰσχύω ἐν τῷ ἐνδυναμοῦντί με”
I have strength in all things through the one who strengthens me

It is quite a popular verse in Christian circles.

Here are some observations:

  1. There is an emphasis on the word “all things.”  It is supposed to be the direct object in the sentence in light of the Greek accusative case but it is nuanced since it is move forward before the verb “I have strength…”  Paul doesn’t want us to miss this point that it is “all things” he has in mind.

  2. We should try to understand what “all things” entail after all we know it can’t mean everything.  It cannot mean sin.  Paul here is not encouraging believers they can sin by the power in the Lord.  Thus context is important in shaping our understanding of what is meant by “all things.

  3. The two verses before Philippians 4:13 is important for understanding how we should understand what Paul is referring to when he said “all things.”  Hear Philippians 4:11-12 from the New American Standard Bible: “Not that I speak from want, for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am. 12 I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how to live in prosperity; in any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need.”

    1. Paul mentioned about difficult situations that involve “humble means,” “going hungry” and “suffering need.

    2. Apparently Paul was describing circumstances in which he underwent that would have brought concern to his readers in Philippi when they finally learn of it (v.10).

  4. By the way these difficult circumstances are the result of Paul’s ministry.

  5. Even with difficulties note Paul said “I have strength!”  These are words of encouragement!

    1. The verb’s indicative mood is not stating a wish, nor a mere probability but it is functioning to indicate that this is a factual statement!

    2. The verb’s present tense is functioning to convey a continuous action.  I take that it is best to understand the continuous sense given the various situations he’s just described in the context.  What marvel that in all circumstances that Paul faced he can continually have strength!

  6. How does Paul have strength to endure?  Note the second have verse says “through Him who strengthens me.”

    1. For those who know Greek the preposition  ἐν here might raise question.  I think here there is an instrumental sense of the preposition being used here.  Thus the means of how Paul can be strengthen is going to be mentioned.

    2. We might miss it in the English since the verse often as “through Him who strengthens me” but in the Greek it literally is “through the one who strengthens me.”  While the meaning is the same I think it is important to note there is no “him” pronoun in the Greek but a substantival participle “the one who strengthen.”  Paul is directly telling us how he can endure: It is through the “strengthener.”  And Paul tells us this “one who strengthen” strengthen me.

Application:

  • People often use this verse for sports, entertainment achievement (think Oscars and other trophies’ events), school goals, etc.  But that’s not the context of what Paul is talking about.  Paul is talking about difficulties in ministry.  He has the sense of sharing the Gospel and ministering to the church and all that he has to endure.  Have you interpreted this verse properly?

  • From this verse and its context we must realize that humanly speaking ministry and serving God is not going to be always easy.  Have you realized it?  Sometimes we can act shock serving God is easy.  But we ought to know better.

  • How is your service to God?  Have you turn to the one who gives strength?  Pray to Him right now about it!

  • Do we act like we have no strength or do we believe that God has given us strength to put Him first?  Let us go out being strong, knowing that God has given us the strength to endure for His sake!

*****************************************************************************

P.S. (from bruce)   If you’re not a “born again” Christian, is the Holy Spirit urging you to open this link ??  Here is the truth for this most important days writing, about how God’s grace is received to become a Christian in God’s eyes; through understanding and obeying the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ…   https://godsmanforever.com/2016/12/19/the-gospel-of-our-lord-jesus-christ-12182016-written-by-bruce-r-mills/

To my brothers and sisters in Christ, please feel free to share this message of the cross with those in need…

Picture credit:   https://www.google.com/search?q=picture+our+strength+comes+from+God&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwirq-CV6cTdAhXJMd8KHRbABFAQsAR6BAgAEAE#imgrc=UgXfwI_5TQZOOM:

 

 

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