Maranatha Devotionals
"maranatha devotionals" "devotionals" "maranatha"

Thursday, January 03, 2008

Moving to Wordpress

I am making the move to Wordpress. For those of you who have subscribed, please make the necessary changes! I hope you will join me at the new location!

Thank you for your faithfulness! God bless you and see you there!


Maranatha at Wordpress

Word of God - Day 6 - The Shepherd

In yesterday's devotional, we saw how God uses the medium of speech for His Word to be communicated to His people. Is it any wonder then that the Lord would compare Himself to a shepherd? Many years ago, I did a study on the job of a shepherd in biblical times. This comparison of the shepherd to our Lord is an absolute blessing! I pray you will receive a blessing today.

Did you know that the shepherd speaks to his sheep? The sheep actually recognize their own shepherd's voice and won't respond to another shepherd's voice. (Joh 10:27) My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: I don't know about you, but this brings me great comfort. A good part of Christ's earthly ministry was spent teaching His disciples. They sat at His feet listening to His lessons and parables. He spoke to them and shared with them His Father's will. (Mar 6:34) And Jesus, when he came out, saw much people, and was moved with compassion toward them, because they were as sheep not having a shepherd: and he began to teach them many things. Jesus knew they were without a shepherd and He became their Shepherd and taught them. He taught them from the Scriptures. How can the Christian hear Jesus' voice today? Christ is known as the Word of God, therefore, it is through God's Word that we can hear His voice! In fact, without the Word in our lives, we will make mistakes. (Mat 22:29) Jesus answered and said unto them, Ye do err, not knowing the scriptures, nor the power of God. The Word is God's power in our lives. (Joh 1:12) But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:

The shepherd not only speaks to his sheep, he leads his sheep and he knows each one of them, watching over them day and night. He knows each one of sheep personally - he knows each one of their markings. In fact, shepherds would name their sheep to pass the time. (Joh 10:3) To him the porter openeth; and the sheep hear his voice: and he calleth his own sheep by name, and leadeth them out. Does this not bring you comfort, dear Christian? Your Shepherd, Jesus Christ, calls you by name! When I was being wooed by the Holy Spirit to be saved, Jesus was saying, "Kate, come to Me"! Praise His Holy Name! After salvation, I instantly heard my Shepherd's voice as I read the Word! The Word of God lit up like a neon sign and the Shepherd's message was loud and clear to me. The pages of my Bible were no longer dry reading but they were alive!

Being a shepherd was was a very responsible job. The shepherd had to keep count of his sheep and give an account for any that were lost. The owner would demand to be paid for each one that was lost. (Mat 18:12) How think ye? if a man have an hundred sheep, and one of them be gone astray, doth he not leave the ninety and nine, and goeth into the mountains, and seeketh that which is gone astray? In today's mind set, one wonders why so much time would be spent looking for one lost sheep. But when a price is attached to that sheep, one can clearly understand because that lost sheep is of value to the shepherd. Christ paid for each of us with a great price, my friend - with His own life. Our Shepherd gave up His life for each one of us. As the shepherd would bring his sheep in at night, he would count them as they passed by under his hand. Each one was touched by him. Christ touches each one of us through His Word.

The shepherd also anointed his sheep's heads with oil. The Shepherd in Psalm 23:5 anoints His sheep's head with oil. (Psa 23:5) Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over. The oil symbolizes receiving God's anointing - receiving God's grace to live the Christian life. The oil was used for medicinal purposes - being placed on a sheep's head kept the sheep from getting sun stroke. It would also heal the bramble scratches. As Moses anointed the tabernacle (Lev. 8:10-12) and sanctified it, so should the Christian anoint himself (2 Pet. 1:14) to sanctify himself daily to serve the Lord. As we read the Word, we hear God speaking to us. As we apply what we have been taught by the Word, we become more and more set apart from the world.

As the shepherd spoke, he would lead his sheep daily to rest at noon in a quiet pasture and to a safe drinking place in the evening. Our Shepherd leads us to quiet pastures in His Word - we need to make time to graze there and be fed spiritually. We also are led to a safe drinking place in the Word of God. It is in our Bibles that we find everlasting water - we do not thirst when we live by the Word. The Bible is a living Book - bringing conviction and direction for the believer. (Joh 4:14) But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life. Not only does salvation come from the blessed pages of our Bible but when we hear the Shepherd's voice, we follow and receive eternal life.

At dusk, when the shepherd can no longer be easily seen by his sheep, he taps the rocks with his staff to assure them he is near. This brought a whole new meaning to me as to why David said that God's rod and staff comforted him. (Psa 23:4) Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me. The shepherd's staff guides the sheep and his rod, or club, protects them from attacks of wild beasts. The sheep are comforted by the sound of the staff on the rocks - they know the shepherd is near and ready to protect them. When we are in the Word, we are being guided by our Shepherd, the Word of God, Jesus Christ. We can hear His staff hitting the rock because we recognize Him throughout the Bible. When we are in the Word, we are protected from the enemy. We recognize false doctrine when we read it and hear it because we have seen and heard the true Shepherd. It is said that bank tellers are trained to catch counterfeit money by having them handle and touch real money. We will recognize false doctrine because we are hearing and reading true doctrine. The more we are in the Word of God, the easier it will be for us to recognize false gospels and heresy.

The job of a shepherd was considered to be an abomination to Egyptians. (Gen 46:34) That ye shall say, Thy servants' trade hath been about cattle from our youth even until now, both we, and also our fathers: that ye may dwell in the land of Goshen; for every shepherd is an abomination unto the Egyptians. Since Egypt is considered to be a type of the world, the world will consider Christ to be an abomination. (Joh 1:10) He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not. Why? Jesus is an abomination to the world because He exposes their sin. (Joh 7:7) The world cannot hate you; but me it hateth, because I testify of it, that the works thereof are evil. Our Shepherd will expose our sin so that we can remove it from our lives.

What a blessed comparison this has been indeed! Our Shepherd speaks to us in His Word. His words guide us, feed us and anoint us to do His work. How beautiful are the words of our Saviour as we read the Bible each day! How can we survive without them?

Labels: ,

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Word of God - Day 5 - The Word of God

(1 John 5:7) For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one. There is no way one could misinterpret this verse. The Trinity is clearly depicted here. Therefore, the only way the devil could cause doubt and division over this verse would be to either change the words or remove it altogether.

Except for the King James Bible, none of the 20 different versions I checked contained this verse in its entirety. They say something like "For there are three that testify" and then they jump into verse 8. Why would the devil attack this particular verse, do you think? The devil's primary goal is to exalt himself to be God. He hates Christ and everything about Him. Therefore, the only way he can discredit Christ and His redemptive work is to remove key verses depicting Him and His work of the cross.

It is interesting that the only verse in the Bible that actually comes out and defines the Trinity refers to Jesus Christ as the Word! The Word is of vital importance to God's nature. The Father provides us salvation through His Word (through Christ) and teaches and moves us spiritually through the Spirit (His Holy Spirit). All three Persons of the Trinity are essential to draw us to salvation and all Three are essential to the Christian's growth. Is it any wonder that the devil would attack the very word of God? It began in the Garden of Eden (Genesis 3:1) with "Yea, hath God said," and it has continued to this day. I found it interesting that his words are documented in chapter 3 verse 1. The number three symbolizes "the Trinity and Godhead" and the number one symbolizes "the beginning and one God." The Trinity is One God. If Satan can successfully remove credibility from God's Word, then he can cause people to doubt salvation through Christ.

How can Satan do this? The one source that points man to salvation through Christ is the Word of God, the Bible. (Rom 10:17) So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. The phrase, "the Word of God" can be found 45 times in the Bible. Three times in the Old Testament and 42 times in the New Testament.

1. God's Word can be shown:

(1Sa 9:27) And as they were going down to the end of the city, Samuel said to Saul, Bid the servant pass on before us, (and he passed on,) but stand thou still a while, that I may shew thee the word of God.

2. God's Word can be heard:

(1Ki 12:22) But the word of God came unto Shemaiah the man of God, saying,

(1Ch 17:3) And it came to pass the same night, that the word of God came to Nathan, saying,

(Luk 3:2) Annas and Caiaphas being the high priests, the word of God came unto John the son of Zacharias in the wilderness.

(Luk 5:1) And it came to pass, that, as the people pressed upon him to hear the word of God, he stood by the lake of Gennesaret,

(Luk 8:21) And he answered and said unto them, My mother and my brethren are these which hear the word of God, and do it.

(Luk 11:28) But he said, Yea rather, blessed are they that hear the word of God, and keep it.

(Act 11:1) And the apostles and brethren that were in Judaea heard that the Gentiles had also received the word of God.

(Rom 10:17) So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

3. God's Word can be minimized by tradition:

(Mar 7:13) Making the word of God of none effect through your tradition, which ye have delivered: and many such like things do ye.

4. God's Word is considered a seed:

(Luk 8:11) Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God.

(1 Pe 1:23) Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever.

5. God's Word cannot be broken:

(Joh 10:35) If he called them gods, unto whom the word of God came, and the scripture cannot be broken;

6. God's Word is spoken:

(Act 4:31) And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spake the word of God with boldness.

(Act 6:2) Then the twelve called the multitude of the disciples unto them, and said, It is not reason that we should leave the word of God, and serve tables.

(Act 13:5) And when they were at Salamis, they preached the word of God in the synagogues of the Jews: and they had also John to their minister.

(Act 13:7) Which was with the deputy of the country, Sergius Paulus, a prudent man; who called for Barnabas and Saul, and desired to hear the word of God.

(Act 13:44) And the next sabbath day came almost the whole city together to hear the word of God.

(Act 13:46) Then Paul and Barnabas waxed bold, and said, It was necessary that the word of God should first have been spoken to you: but seeing ye put it from you, and judge yourselves unworthy of everlasting life, lo, we turn to the Gentiles.

(Act 17:13) But when the Jews of Thessalonica had knowledge that the word of God was preached of Paul at Berea, they came thither also, and stirred up the people.

(Heb 13:7) Remember them which have the rule over you, who have spoken unto you the word of God: whose faith follow, considering the end of their conversation.

7. God's Word saves:

(Act 6:7) And the word of God increased; and the number of the disciples multiplied in Jerusalem greatly; and a great company of the priests were obedient to the faith.

(Act 8:14) Now when the apostles which were at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent unto them Peter and John:

(Act 12:24) But the word of God grew and multiplied.

(Rom 9:6) Not as though the word of God hath taken none effect. For they are not all Israel, which are of Israel:

8. God's Word must be taught:

(Act 18:11) And he continued there a year and six months, teaching the word of God among them.

(Act 19:20) So mightily grew the word of God and prevailed.

9. God's Word is not confined to a certain few:

(1Co 14:36) What? came the word of God out from you? or came it unto you only?

10. God's Word can be corrupted by the unsaved:

(2Co 2:17) For we are not as many, which corrupt the word of God: but as of sincerity, but as of God, in the sight of God speak we in Christ.

(2Co 4:2) But have renounced the hidden things of dishonesty, not walking in craftiness, nor handling the word of God deceitfully; but by manifestation of the truth commending ourselves to every man's conscience in the sight of God.

11. God's Word convicts:

(Eph 6:17) And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:

(Heb 4:12) For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.

12. God's Word is to be taught/preached by the Man of God:

(Col 1:25) Whereof I am made a minister, according to the dispensation of God which is given to me for you, to fulfil the word of God;

13. God's Word is Truth:

(1 Th 2:13) For this cause also thank we God without ceasing, because, when ye received the word of God which ye heard of us, ye received it not as the word of men, but as it is in truth, the word of God, which effectually worketh also in you that believe.

14. God's Word sanctifies the believer:
(1 Ti 4:5) For it is sanctified by the word of God and prayer.

15. God's Word is not bound:

(2Ti 2:9) Wherein I suffer trouble, as an evil doer, even unto bonds; but the word of God is not bound.

16. God's Word is blasphemed when we disobey it:

(Tit 2:5) To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.

17. God's Word framed the worlds:

(Heb 11:3) Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear.

18. God's Word holds the unbeliever accountable:

(2Pe 3:5) For this they willingly are ignorant of, that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of the water and in the water:

19. God's Word abides in us and makes us strong:

(1Jn 2:14) I have written unto you, fathers, because ye have known him that is from the beginning. I have written unto you, young men, because ye are strong, and the word of God abideth in you, and ye have overcome the wicked one.

20. God's Word was confirmed by men of God:

(Rev 1:2) Who bare record of the word of God, and of the testimony of Jesus Christ, and of all things that he saw.

21. God's Word causes enmity with the world:

(Rev 1:9) I John, who also am your brother, and companion in tribulation, and in the kingdom and patience of Jesus Christ, was in the isle that is called Patmos, for the word of God, and for the testimony of Jesus Christ.

(Rev 6:9) And when he had opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain for the word of God, and for the testimony which they held:

(Rev 20:4) And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years.

22. God's Word is Jesus Christ:

(Rev 19:13) And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God.

(1 John 5:7) For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.

The devil can try to remove Christ from the Bible but he won't be able to. The Son of God - the Lamb of God - the Word of God has spoken through the Bible. To trivialize the Bible or to change it is a very dangerous thing. Is it any wonder that the devil would be busy trying to discredit the Word of God?

(Psa 119:89) LAMED. For ever, O LORD, thy word is settled in heaven.

(Psa 119:160) Thy word is true from the beginning: and every one of thy righteous judgments endureth for ever.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Word of God - Day 4 - The Light

(Luk 18:16-17) But Jesus called them unto him, and said, Suffer little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God. (16) Verily I say unto you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child shall in no wise enter therein. (17) As I meditated on these verses this morning, I wondered why the Lord would compare heaven to a kingdom filled with those who received salvation like a child. What is it about a child that would lead our Saviour to encourage us to be like them when it comes to salvation? A child does not complicate an issue - he sees things simple. When my son was little, I asked him how the stars stay up in the heavens; he answered that "God holds them up there" and he believed that without any hesitation. If I were to ask an adult, on the other hand, I would be given scientific reasons.

You can be laid off from work and in the middle of a financial crisis in your home. But if your child asked you if everything was O.K., you would respond with reassurance that all was well and your child would believe you and would not question it. Correct? I believe that when Jesus used this analogy, He wanted to communicate to us that salvation is not a complicated issue. Nicodemus complicated it in John 3 - this Pharisee could not accept Christ's words by exercising his faith. He had to put an intellectual twist to it. A child can see simplicity because he is simple. Life has not had a chance to take its toll in that young heart. A child clearly sees the light of the Gospel when an adult cannot.

Jesus Himself, The Word, compares Himself to the light of the world. His Word is what will light salvation's message. Every believer can clearly look back on his salvation testimony and see God's hand along the way. God lit up a path and that path led to Him. Even after salvation, God's Word continues to be a light that directs us. (Psa 119:105) NUN. Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path. Jesus is the Light of the world. His salvation is evident throughout the precious pages of the Bible. (Joh 9:5) As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world. The Word was in the beginning and with that Word He brings light. The light has many uses:

1. The believer does not remain in darkness:

(Joh 12:46) I am come a light into the world, that whosoever believeth on me should not abide in darkness.

The believer no longer has to live in the darkness of sin and be blinded. He has the Truth of the Word in his Bible and is able to see the light of Truth.

(Joh 1:9) That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world.

2. The Light directs the believer:

(Psa 119:105) NUN. Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.

Our path is no longer in darkness. We are able to search the Scriptures and determine God's will for us. Knowing God's will lights our way and we don't have to wonder. As long as we are in the Word, the enemy cannot fool us because the Word is a light and we will be able to see the enemy's tactics and recognize what he is trying to do to us.

(Joh 8:12) Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.

3. The Light alerts us to false doctrine:

(Isa 8:20) To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them.

If someone comes to us preaching another gospel, we are able to discern their lies because the Word reveals the Truth to us. We must be diligently reading the Word to be able to discern deception. We cannot trust man or the doctrines of man.

(2 Pe 1:19) We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts:

(2 Co 4:4) In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.

Does a child understand thoroughly the concept of a flashlight? I challenge you to ask a six year old to explain to you how a flashlight works. You will be amused by the different answers you get. He does not need to know the complexities of batteries or the switch. Although a child cannot explain the concept, he has absolute trust that the light will shine when the flashlight is switched on. It is this same simple faith of a child that Christ encouraged in a person who is seeking salvation. The religions of the world would have you to keep the sacraments or join their church. But Christ did not have such stipulations. He made salvation so simple that even a child could obtain it. The child does not need to know the entire law to recognize his own sins. He knows he sinned and he is quick to accept the free gift through Christ.

That is why it is easier to win a child to Christ than an adult. The older a person gets, the less and less chance he will accept the free gift of salvation. He no longer sees the light of the Word because the father of lies has darkened his heart. (Joh 8:44) Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it. The devil wants you to believe that salvation is complicated and involves more than Christ's complete sacrifice on the cross. He wants you to believe that you must contribute something toward your salvation, like works or being good. That is not what the Gospel is. (Eph 2:8) For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:

You can minimize the importance of God's Word all you want, my friend. But there is a reason why Christ is called so many names. We will cover a few of those names in this series as they compare to the Word. This particular one, the Light of the world, is especially meaningful because without light, we stumble in darkness. Would you want your child to live in a dark room? You would do all you could to provide a lighted room for your child, wouldn't you? God is no different. He has given us His very Word to light our way. He did so in the time of Moses and He continues to do so today. (Exo 13:21) And the LORD went before them by day in a pillar of a cloud, to lead them the way; and by night in a pillar of fire, to give them light; to go by day and night: Of Christ, Zacharias prophesied: (Luk 1:77-79) To give knowledge of salvation unto his people by the remission of their sins, (77) Through the tender mercy of our God; whereby the dayspring from on high hath visited us, (78) To give light to them that sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace. (79)

Let the Light shine in you so others may recognize that you are different that those religious people who visit their doorstep. To the one who does not believe that God's Word is final and that church tradition is equal to the Bible, I challenge you to read God's Word only for a while. Its truths will open up to you and the glorious light will be revealed to you!

Father in Heaven...
Shed Your blessed Light before me
So I clearly see my way
Keep me from the traps of sin
As I read Your Word each day.

Labels: ,

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Word of God - Day 3 - Thy Word

(Luk 6:47-48) Whosoever cometh to me, and heareth my sayings, and doeth them, I will shew you to whom he is like: (47) He is like a man which built an house, and digged deep, and laid the foundation on a rock: and when the flood arose, the stream beat vehemently upon that house, and could not shake it: for it was founded upon a rock. (48)

What sayings are being spoken of by Jesus? The sayings that He, Jesus, spoke! These same sayings were Holy Spirit breathed and recorded for our benefit. (2 Pet 1:16-21) For we have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of his majesty. (16) For he received from God the Father honour and glory, when there came such a voice to him from the excellent glory, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. (17) And this voice which came from heaven we heard, when we were with him in the holy mount. (18) We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts: (19) Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation. (20 For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost. (21)

Jesus Christ is the Word of God (John 1:1). The Gospel is written in His Word and is the very foundation for the believer. (Joh 6:68-69) Then Simon Peter answered him, Lord, to whom shall we go? thou hast the words of eternal life. (68) And we believe and are sure that thou art that Christ, the Son of the living God. (69) The same words of eternal life that Jesus had for His apostles are found in the Bible. Jesus was laying a foundation for us.

(1 Cor 3:11) For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ. That very foundation was the Rock of Ages! (1 Cor 10:4) And did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ. When we build our faith on Jesus Christ and His Word, we will be grounded in our faith. (Luk 6:48) He is like a man which built an house, and digged deep, and laid the foundation on a rock: and when the flood arose, the stream beat vehemently upon that house, and could not shake it: for it was founded upon a rock.

Jesus Christ, the Word of God, has given us His Word throughout the ages for us to come to know Him. He can be found within the pages of our Bible - whether the Jew is searching in the Old Testament or the unbeliever is searching in the New Testament. Jesus can be found there. Why is the Word so important? It is the path to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord and Saviour, my friend.

David, the apple of God's eye, knew this. He cherished God's Word. He communicated this quite beautifully in Psalm 119. This beautiful Psalm has 176 verses and each are divided into 22 stanzas and each stanza has eight lines. Each stanza represents a letter of the Hebrew alphabet and each line within the stanza begins with the corresponding letter of the alphabet. This is known as an acrostic poem. For example, in Ps. 119:1-8, each verse begins with the Hebrew letter Aleph. Verses 9-16 begin with the Hebrew letter Beth, etc. The beauty of this Psalm is not thoroughly appreciated in English but David's words are still very poignant.

Just in Psalm 119 alone, David refers to "Thy word" 38 times! David loved God's word and he realized just what kind of an impact God's word had upon him. So much so, he penned it so we would be able to know what God's word can do for us:

1. It can keep us from sin:

(Psa 119:11) Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.

(Psa 119:101) I have refrained my feet from every evil way, that I might keep thy word.

2. It reveals sin to us:

(Psa 119:158) I beheld the transgressors, and was grieved; because they kept not thy word.

3. It convicts us:

(Psa 119:9) BETH. Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? by taking heed thereto according to thy word.

(Psa 119:65) TETH. Thou hast dealt well with thy servant, O LORD, according unto thy word.

(Psa 119:67) Before I was afflicted I went astray: but now have I kept thy word.

4. It is a guide to us:

(Psa 119:105) NUN. Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.

(Psa 119:133) Order my steps in thy word: and let not any iniquity have dominion over me.

5. It teaches us to remember it:

(Psa 119:16) I will delight myself in thy statutes: I will not forget thy word.

(Psa 119:38) Stablish thy word unto thy servant, who is devoted to thy fear.

6. It must be kept:

(Psa 119:17) GIMEL. Deal bountifully with thy servant, that I may live, and keep thy word.

7. It should be read and mediated upon:

(Psa 119:148) Mine eyes prevent the night watches, that I might meditate in thy word.

8. It is to be feared (reverential):

(Psa 119:161) SCHIN. Princes have persecuted me without a cause: but my heart standeth in awe of thy word.

9. It rejuvenates us:

(Psa 119:25) DALETH. My soul cleaveth unto the dust: quicken thou me according to thy word.

(Psa 119:50) This is my comfort in my affliction: for thy word hath quickened me.

(Psa 119:107) I am afflicted very much: quicken me, O LORD, according unto thy word.

(Psa 119:154) Plead my cause, and deliver me: quicken me according to thy word.

10. It strengthens us:

(Psa 119:28) My soul melteth for heaviness: strengthen thou me according unto thy word.

11. It brings mercy:

(Psa 119:41) VAU. Let thy mercies come also unto me, O LORD, even thy salvation, according to thy word.

(Psa 119:58) I intreated thy favour with my whole heart: be merciful unto me according to thy word.

(Psa 119:170) Let my supplication come before thee: deliver me according to thy word.

12. It brings hope:

(Psa 119:49) ZAIN. Remember the word unto thy servant, upon which thou hast caused me to hope.

(Psa 119:81) CAPH. My soul fainteth for thy salvation: but I hope in thy word.

(Psa 119:116) Uphold me according unto thy word, that I may live: and let me not be ashamed of my hope.

(Psa 119:147) I prevented the dawning of the morning, and cried: I hoped in thy word.

13. It brings comfort:

(Psa 119:76) Let, I pray thee, thy merciful kindness be for my comfort, according to thy word unto thy servant.

(Psa 119:82) Mine eyes fail for thy word, saying, When wilt thou comfort me?

(Psa 119:114) Thou art my hiding place and my shield: I hope in thy word.

14. It brings joy:

(Psa 119:162) I rejoice at thy word, as one that findeth great spoil.

15. It brings understanding:

(Psa 119:169) TAU. Let my cry come near before thee, O LORD: give me understanding according to thy word.

16. It brings judgment:

(Psa 119:43) And take not the word of truth utterly out of my mouth; for I have hoped in thy judgments.

16. It is to be trusted:

(Psa 119:42) So shall I have wherewith to answer him that reproacheth me: for I trust in thy word.

(Psa 119:89) LAMED. For ever, O LORD, thy word is settled in heaven.

(Psa 119:140) Thy word is very pure: therefore thy servant loveth it.

(Psa 119:160) Thy word is true from the beginning: and every one of thy righteous judgments endureth for ever.

17. It is to be shared:

(Psa 119:74) They that fear thee will be glad when they see me; because I have hoped in thy word.

(Psa 119:172) My tongue shall speak of thy word: for all thy commandments are righteousness.

18. It is to be magnified:

(Psa 138:2) I will worship toward thy holy temple, and praise thy name for thy lovingkindness and for thy truth: for thou hast magnified thy word above all thy name.

Surely God's Word is considered so important that David repeatedly stressed it in this particular Psalm! David is emphasizing that God's Word was important to him and that God's Word - the Bible - is to be an important part of our lives. Don't take God's Word lightly, my friend. If God Himself magnifies His Word above all, what do you think He expects of us?

His very Words bring life. (Joh 6:33) For the bread of God is he which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life unto the world. Jesus is our bread of life. Christ, Himself, told us that it is God's Word that we should live by - not man's words - not man's traditions. We are to live by EVERY word of God. Jesus was quoting, (Deu 8:3) And he humbled thee, and suffered thee to hunger, and fed thee with manna, which thou knewest not, neither did thy fathers know; that he might make thee know that man doth not live by bread only, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of the LORD doth man live. when He said, (Luk 4:4) And Jesus answered him, saying, It is written, That man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God.

I tremble thinking of what awaits the lost. I tremble thinking what awaits the misguided who have been led astray by church traditions, dogmas and doctrines. I tremble thinking what awaits the leaders of any church who has added to God's words or has taken away from God's words. Christ emphasized that we are to live by every word of God! If Christ gave us such an important commandment, then how can man live by every word of God if man does not know the word of God? It's not rocket science, my friend. God would not command us to live by His every word and yet not provide us with His words to live by. I love this analogy:

A man spit on the street and a policeman saw him do it. The policeman came to him and began to write him a ticket. The man was stunned. "What have I done to deserve this?" he said. The policeman told him it was against the law in this state and he would have to receive a ticket for breaking the law. The man claimed that he did not know that this was a law. The policeman's response was, "Not knowing the law does not exempt you from the law. It is your responsibility to know the laws so you can keep them. The laws are all kept in the books and I must enforce them."

Do not be deceived. Do not let the devil penetrate your heart so that you also say, (Gen 3:1b) ... Yea, hath God said...?" God has given us His Word to follow - it is in written form and has been preserved for us throughout the years. To say that we do not have the true Word of God is to put God in a box and say that He is not able to keep His Word preserved.

(Psa 111:7-9) The works of his hands are verity and judgment; all his commandments are sure. (7) They stand fast for ever and ever, and are done in truth and uprightness. (8) He sent redemption unto his people: he hath commanded his covenant for ever: holy and reverend is his name. (9)

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Word of God - Day 2 - In a Book

From the beginning, God has desired to have His Word recorded in a book of some kind. I believe that it was so important to have God's Words written in a book that He stated in His Word 12 times! The first historical record of God's desire for His Word in written form can be found in the oldest book of the Bible, Job: (Job 19:23) Oh that my words were now written! oh that they were printed in a book!

Why do you think God would want us to have His Word in written form?

(1) For an on-going memorial:

(Exo 17:14) And the LORD said unto Moses, Write this for a memorial in a book, and rehearse it in the ears of Joshua: for I will utterly put out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven.

What was so important about this this first recorded war with Israel? Why did God request it be recorded in a book as a memorial? Matthew Henry's comment is a precious blessing:
It was great encouragement to the people to see Joshua before them in the field of battle, and Moses above them on the hill. Christ is both to us; our Joshua, the Captain of our salvation, who fights our battles, and our Moses, who ever lives, making intercession above, that our faith fail not. Weapons formed against God's Israel cannot prosper long, and shall be broken at last. Moses must write what had been done, what Amalek had done against Israel; write their bitter hatred; write their cruel attempts; let them never be forgotten, nor what God had done for Israel in saving them from Amalek. Write what should be done; that in process of time Amalek should be totally ruined and rooted out. Amalek's destruction was typical of the destruction of all the enemies of Christ and his kingdom.

What a blessing! I also noticed that it was to be rehearsed - repeated. Noah Webster defines the word as:
1. To recite; to repeat the words of a passage or composition; to repeat the words of another.
God's Word was not to be put away on a shelf or interpreted only by "certain" people. (2Pe 1:20) Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation. It was to be repeated over and over. That is how we get to know God's Word so completely that we no longer stumble. We have it committed to memory. (Deu 6:6-8) And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: (6) And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up. (7) And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thine hand, and they shall be as frontlets between thine eyes. (8) What was to be a sign and as frontlets between our eyes? Verse six says God's Words! Noah Webster defines frontlets as:
[from front.] A frontal or browband; a fillet or band worn on the forehead. Deu 6.
God wants us to keep His Word ever present in our hand and in our heads, as well as in our hearts (verse 6). We are to teach our children and others diligently in every aspect of our lives (verse 7). Why?

2. To point to Christ:

(Deu 31:24-26) And it came to pass, when Moses had made an end of writing the words of this law in a book, until they were finished, (24) That Moses commanded the Levites, which bare the ark of the covenant of the LORD, saying, (25) Take this book of the law, and put it in the side of the ark of the covenant of the LORD your God, that it may be there for a witness against thee. (26)

The priesthood (the Levites) was charged with baring the ark. The ark symbolizes the Lord Jesus Christ. The Ark was made of shittim wood, an extremely strong and durable wood which represents our Saviour's incorruptibility. It was covered with a gold in and out to represent Christ's complete deity together with His humanity. The golden crown represents Jesus as King of Kings and Lord of Lords. The Ten Commandments were kept inside the Ark showing us that Christ kept these Commandments. The books of the Law were kept on the side of the Ark. Since Jesus is the Word of God, the Law (the books) were kept on the side of the Ark. The Law is made perfect through Him. (Mat 5:17) Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil. The Law is what makes us realize that we are sinners. (Gal 3:24) Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith. (Gal 3:25) But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster. The book of the Law shows mankind that it is impossible to keep the whole Law (James 2:10). I love how the Law was kept on the side of the Ark. It reminded me that Christ's side was pierced at His death. (Joh 19:34) But one of the soldiers with a spear pierced his side, and forthwith came there out blood and water.

What a beautiful picture of the Ark and Christ! The Ark is permanent - everlasting. Christ is everlasting - His Word is everlasting. God pointed that out in His Word as well. (Psa 119:144) The righteousness of thy testimonies is everlasting: give me understanding, and I shall live.

3. To make it permanent:

(Isa 30:8) Now go, write it before them in a table, and note it in a book, that it may be for the time to come for ever and ever:

God's Word does not expire - it does not become outdated - it is forever and ever. I was excited to find that there are seven occurrences in Scripture that contain the words "word, for ever"! Seven symbolizes perfection - God's perfect number! The Word is perfect.

(2Sa 7:25) And now, O LORD God, the word that thou hast spoken concerning thy servant, and concerning his house, establish it for ever, and do as thou hast said.

(Psa 105:8) He hath remembered his covenant for ever, the word which he commanded to a thousand generations.

(Psa 119:89) LAMED. For ever, O LORD, thy word is settled in heaven.

(Psa 119:160) Thy word is true from the beginning: and every one of thy righteous judgments endureth for ever.

(Isa 40:8) The grass withereth, the flower fadeth: but the word of our God shall stand for ever.

(1 Pe 1:23) Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever.

(1 Pe 1:25) But the word of the Lord endureth for ever. And this is the word which by the gospel is preached unto you.

For the Word to be everlasting, never ending, we must have it in its entirety.

4. To make it complete:

(Jer 30:2) Thus speaketh the LORD God of Israel, saying, Write thee all the words that I have spoken unto thee in a book.

(Jer 36:2) Take thee a roll of a book, and write therein all the words that I have spoken unto thee against Israel, and against Judah, and against all the nations, from the day I spake unto thee, from the days of Josiah, even unto this day.

Notice that God told Jeremiah to write ALL the words. God said this twice! What good is just some words? What good is a story without a beginning or an end? What good is a contract without the signature line? God's Word is complete and God's Word will come to pass.

(Num 11:23) And the LORD said unto Moses, Is the LORD'S hand waxed short? thou shalt see now whether my word shall come to pass unto thee or not.

(Isa 55:11) So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.

(Jer 1:12) Then said the LORD unto me, Thou hast well seen: for I will hasten my word to perform it.

(Mat 5:18) For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.

The written Word of God in a Book, complete and perfect without error, points us to Christ and His coming judgment.

5. To warn us about what is to come:

(Jer 51:60) So Jeremiah wrote in a book all the evil that should come upon Babylon, even all these words that are written against Babylon.

(Rev 1:1) The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto him, to shew unto his servants things which must shortly come to pass; and he sent and signified it by his angel unto his servant John:

(Rev 1:11) Saying, I am Alpha and Omega, the first and the last: and, What thou seest, write in a book, and send it unto the seven churches which are in Asia; unto Ephesus, and unto Smyrna, and unto Pergamos, and unto Thyatira, and unto Sardis, and unto Philadelphia, and unto Laodicea.

We are without excuse, my friend. God has not left us without direction. He has given us a Book that contains His Words for mankind! From the beginning there has been an effort to corrupt God's Word because of ole slew foot! (Gen 3:1) Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden? The devil caused man to question God's Word in the Garden of Eden and it continues today.

God was indeed adamant about recording His Word in a Book and preserving His Words. (Psa 12:6-7) The words of the LORD are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times. (6) Thou shalt keep them, O LORD, thou shalt preserve them from this generation for ever. (7) If God cannot preserve His Word for mankind, then this is a contradiction and we can call God a liar. (Tit 1:2) In hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began; Since God cannot lie, then His Words are just as important as He says they are and they have been recorded in a book for us. How, then, can there be over 100 various versions of His Word? Each version has to be different from the main source or it cannot receive a copyright. Does God want parts of His Word to be removed? Does God want words added to His Words? (Rev 22:18-19) For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: (18) And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book. (18) If God took time to point out that severe judgment would come to those who added to or took away from the words of the prophecy of this book, then He most certainly means it. (Mat 5:18) For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.

But Satan continues his attacks and tries to corrupt God's Word because he knows that the Truth lies within its pages. (Rom 1:25) Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen. This is Satan's primary goal. If he can succeed in keeping people from reading God's True Word, he can keep people from being saved. He can keep believers from growing and having power through Christ.

Please, Father, don't let me get complacent
When it comes to reading Your blessed Word
May I keep it as frontlets 'tween my eyes
Keeping e'er before me, the Spirit's sword.

Labels: ,

Monday, December 17, 2007

Word of God - Table of Contents

Word of God - Day 1 - Are You Reading?

How many hours a week (not counting church services) do you spend in God's Word? Do you read a paragraph here and there? Or do you have a structured reading time? Are you one of those who reads a page from a little devotional booklet and call that your Bible reading time? Do you have the Word of God boxed down to a five-minute time slot? If you are not a born-again child of God, then it is understandable. However, to the born-again Christian, this is a crucial topic in today's world. We are in the age of i-Pods, the Internet, cell phones, etc. One can get free Bible software with the Strong's Concordance and Noah Webster's Dictionary right at their fingertips on their cell, PDA and PC. The art of studying the Word of God with opened books has now been made available in electronic format. However, with all this technology, does the Christian really spend more time in the Word? Do you?

It is so important for the Christian to be in God's Word! (Psa 119:11) Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee. Being in the Word keeps us from sin! Compromise has set into the heart of the believer in today's church. We see it all around us. The world has come into the church through music, various "versions" of the Bible, manner of dress, etc. These compromises could only have entered because the believer was not prepared. If being in the Word keeps us from sin, then what does this mean of those who have allowed compromise to settle into their hearts and, as a result, into their churches? Compromise is sin, therefore, it means that the believer is not in the Word of God the way he ought to be.

The next 30 days will be spent encouraging you to be in the Word - whether you are saved or not, you cannot build your faith unless you have the Word of God as the main part of your life. To the lost, my goal is to encourage you to get into the Word so that you may be saved. To the born-again Christian, my goal is to renew that zeal to be in God's Word, and enjoy it like we once had when we were first saved.

There are many names for Jesus recorded in the Bible: the Good Shepherd, the King of Kings, the Word of God, etc. Why do you think Jesus called Himself the Word of God? The Word of God draws us to salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. (Rom 10:17) So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. The Word brings salvation to the unbeliever! The unbeliever does not instinctively go to the Bible on a daily basis. His faith cannot be built because he is not in the Word. It is not until he is led to the Word or he hears the Word being preached by a preacher or soul winner that he comes to a saving knowledge of Christ.

However, if the devil can hinder someone from being in the Word, then he can stunt his spiritual growth or keep him from getting saved. Just as you would start suffering from various illnesses if you were undernourished, you will suffer at the hands of the devil if you are spiritually undernourished. To the unbeliever, this means you will suffer burning in hell for all eternity along with the devil. To the believer, this means you will encounter problem after problem and live a defeated life because you will no strength to endure your fiery trials.

If we are not growing in the Lord by reading and studying the Bible, we open ourselves up to false doctrine. Going to church or having a ministry does not keep the devil from attacking you. The devil wants to devour us, my friend. Peter was speaking to believers when he said, Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: (1 Pet 5:8) Peter could have used any other analogy but chose to use roaring lion. Why, do you think? Have you ever watched a nature show on lions and the way they hunt for food? If their prey is a larger animal, they go immediately for a leg to take them down and then they go straight for the throat. Satan is no different. If you are not in your Bible, arming yourself, ole slew foot will take you down - slowly but surely. Then he will go for your throat. The Christian who is in his Bible is prepared for the unexpected. He is armed with verses in his heart ready to meditate on when they are needed. He knows what to do when a difficult situation comes up. He does not have to run to his Pastor or his best friend to find out what to do because God already gave him what he needed through His Word. (Eph 6:11) Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. This verse does not say to gather your Christian friends around you to be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. It says to put on the whole armour of God.

1 Peter 5:8 is a beautiful verse and it is quoted frequently. However, when you read the two verses before it, you find that God does not intend for us to be prey for Satan. Our Shepherd is watching and caring for us. (1 Pet 5:6-7) Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time: (6) Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you. (7) The flesh is what keeps one from the Word of God. A humble Christian submits to God and what the Word commands of him. Noah Webster defines humble as:
Lowly; modest; meek; submissive; opposed to proud,haughty, arrogant or assuming. In an evangelical sense, having a low opinion of one's self, and a deep sense of unworthiness in the sight of God
You may not think you are prideful but you are if you are not spending time in the Word. You are making a statement: "I can live today without the help of God - I can do it on my own!" That's exactly what the devil wants you to do. That is why Satan can attack the believer like a roaring lion! When we submit to the Lord and spend time in His Word, He guards us from the enemy, He gathers us to Him and hides us under His wing for protection, and He guides us in the path that we should go. His guidance can be found in His Word - He promises us that He will not leave us in the dark. (Psa 119:105) NUN. Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path. Your path will be a dark one if you don't spend any time in your Bible. This is when you will begin to wonder where God is. You will begin to doubt that you are His child. You will begin to fret over life's problems and you will waiver in your faith.

So why do you think spending time in the Word is one of the hardest areas for a Christian? The roaring lion does not want you in the Word because he knows that this is where your power from on high lies. (Eph 6:17) And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God: Your Sword (the Bible) is what will keep temptation at bay. Prayer is another area that Satan tries to hinder in the believer's life, but that's a whole other devotional series! Satan will do his best to keep you from your power, the Word of God. How has he succeeded in his efforts? Some of you don't believe that you have the true Word of God in your possession. If you knew that you were to receive a letter directly from God in the mail, wouldn't you run to your mailbox to retrieve it? You do have letters from God right there in the pages of your Bible! Right in front of you! The devil has managed to have over 100 different "versions" on the shelves so the believer doesn't know which one to choose. Words have been twisted and removed to form a watered-down version of God's Word - one without power. The devil's minions have managed to convince man that there is no "true" Bible.

Also, by attacking God's Word, the devil has succeeded in convincing many that Christ is not God. This is nothing new. He started his attack in the Garden of Eden with "Yea, hath God said" Gen. 3:1 If he can cause people to question the very Word of God, then he can remove the focus on salvation through Christ, the Son of God, the second in the Trinity. That is why it is so important for you to be in the Word, my friend. Christ knew just how important the Word was to us that He made certain that it was recorded in a Book for us to have. We are so blessed to be able to have a Bible in each household today - some households have several! It was not so in the days prior to the printing press. We ought to be grateful!

Let's go back to why Christ was referred to as the Word of God. He was the mouthpiece of God the Father while He was on earth. When He left to go back to Heaven, His words were then recorded in a Book, our blessed Bible. This was not a new thing. Recording God's words in a Book is seen throughout the Old Testament as well. Christ lives on in His Word. Salvation was from Him in the Old Testament (Jonah 2:9) and it is still from Him in the New Testament. (Act 4:12) His Holy Spirit comes to dwell within us at the moment of salvation and reveals what the Word of God has to say to us. (Joh 14:26) But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you. Why would Christ leave His Holy Spirit with the born again believer if it weren't important to remember what He had said? The Word is important! Don't let the devil fool you!

Do not take this lightly, dear Christian. Having God's holy Word in our possession is not an insignificant matter - He left us His Word in Book form for a reason. (Exo 17:14) And the LORD said unto Moses, Write this for a memorial in a book, and rehearse it in the ears of Joshua: for I will utterly put out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven. and (Rev 1:11) Saying, I am Alpha and Omega, the first and the last: and, What thou seest, write in a book, and send it unto the seven churches which are in Asia; unto Ephesus, and unto Smyrna, and unto Pergamos, and unto Thyatira, and unto Sardis, and unto Philadelphia, and unto Laodicea. God is a firm believer of having His Word in book form. He knew how important it would be for us!

Christ left us with the very armour that will help us through our pilgrimage here on earth. To trivialize our Bible reading time into a 5-minute devotional, or "one minute with God," is to allow Satan access to our very throats! He is not out there waiting to devour unbelievers! After all, he already has them. However, if he can cause Christians to have no power or strength, he can bring them down - then he can go for their throats! Our power and strength lie with the Word of God. The more you are in the Word, the less you will fall to temptation. Satan knows this and that is why he attacks the Christian's Bible reading time. The better you eat and exercise, the healthier you are and the better your body functions as a whole - your mind is even clearer and you feel as though you have purpose and direction. It is the same with the Word of God. The better you are at your Bible reading and exercising what you are taught, the healthier you will be spiritually as a Christian - your mind will be clearer, no doubts, and you will have clear direction.

In closing, here are a few verses that describe Christ as the Word. This should compel you to read and to study, knowing that His Word is vital in your life. Please, Christian, ask yourself why God would put this particular description of Christ in His Word. It is because He knows how important it is for His children to read, study and grow. (2 Ti 2:15) Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. He did not say that you should study to show yourself approved to yourself, your Pastor, or to others but to show yourself approved unto God!

(Joh 1:1) In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

(Joh 1:14) 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.

(1 Jn 1:1) That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, of the Word of life;

(1 Jn 5:7) For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.

(Rev 19:13) And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God.

(Rev 19:16) And he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.

You will have to stand before the King of Kings and Lord of Lords one day and explain why you were spiritually weak. It won't be because He did not leave you with the tools to be a strong Christian. My friend, you can't build a car engine with a Q-tip. God did not leave you here on earth with a Q-tip. He left you here with the Sword of the Lord - His Holy Word - through Christ Jesus! You have no excuse, my friend. If you are not born again, it's not because there isn't a preacher or a Bible everywhere you turn. If you are saved and defeated, it's not because you don't have the tools. God has left you His very words breathed onto every page of the blessed King James Bible.

Labels: , , , ,

Friday, December 14, 2007

Hymns - Day 30 - Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord

(Joh 8:12) Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life. Today's song ends our series on hymns with another beautiful hymn by my favorite composer Fanny Crosby. I've only heard this particular song sung a couple of times a long time ago. Please go to Cyberhymnal and listen along while you read the words. The words bring joy to a weary heart and encourage one to press on until His return. This is what God honoring music should do, my friend. Today's music may have great words or even a nice melody, but does the song move you toward righteousness? Does it draw you to the Word? Does it cause you to run to the Saviour's side and to His Word so you can fellowship with Him? If it does not, you should contemplate changing your listening habits.

Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord
Fanny Crosby

Holy, holy, holy is the Lord!
Sing, O ye people, gladly adore Him;
Let the mountains tremble at His word;
Let the hills be joyful before Him;
Mighty in wisdom, boundless in mercy,
Great is Jehovah, King over all.


Holy, holy, holy is the Lord!
Let the hills be joyful before Him.

Praise Him, praise Him! shout aloud for joy,
Watchman of Zion, herald the story;
Sin and death His kingdom shall destroy;
All the earth shall sing of His glory;
Praise Him, ye angels, ye who behold Him,
Robed in His splendor, matchless, divine.


King eternal, blessèd be His Name!
So may His children gladly adore Him;
When in Heav’n we join the happy strain,
When we cast our bright crowns before Him;
There in His likeness joyful awaking,
There we shall see Him, there we shall sing:


(Rev 4:8) And the four beasts had each of them six wings about him; and they were full of eyes within: and they rest not day and night, saying, Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, which was, and is, and is to come.

(Psa 98:8) Let the floods clap their hands: let the hills be joyful together

(Psa 98:9) Before the LORD; for he cometh to judge the earth: with righteousness shall he judge the world, and the people with equity.

(Job 36:5) Behold, God is mighty, and despiseth not any: he is mighty in strength and wisdom.

(Psa 132:16) I will also clothe her priests with salvation: and her saints shall shout aloud for joy.

(Isa 52:8) Thy watchmen shall lift up the voice; with the voice together shall they sing: for they shall see eye to eye, when the LORD shall bring again Zion.

(Rom 8:2) For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.

(Psa 66:4) All the earth shall worship thee, and shall sing unto thee; they shall sing to thy name. Selah.

(Isa 6:3) And one cried unto another, and said, Holy, holy, holy, is the LORD of hosts: the whole earth is full of his glory.

(Job 1:21) And said, Naked came I out of my mother's womb, and naked shall I return thither: the LORD gave, and the LORD hath taken away; blessed be the name of the LORD.

(Psa 113:2) Blessed be the name of the LORD from this time forth and for evermore.

(Dan 2:20) Daniel answered and said, Blessed be the name of God for ever and ever: for wisdom and might are his:

(Rev 4:10) The four and twenty elders fall down before him that sat on the throne, and worship him that liveth for ever and ever, and cast their crowns before the throne, saying,

(Rev 4:11) Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.

(Rev 1:7) Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him, and they also which pierced him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him. Even so, Amen.

Do you think Fanny knew her Bible? Here was a lady without sight yet when you read her hymns, you can tell that she had much of the Bible in her mind's eye. She penned the Word of God throughout each of the verses. When you sing this hymn or merely read its words, you are drawn to the Word of God.

So this concludes our series on hymns - hymns we've loved throughout the years and hymns we have never heard although they were hymns of old. I pray that this series was as much of a blessing to you as it was to me!

(Psa 106:48) Blessed be the LORD God of Israel from everlasting to everlasting: and let all the people say, Amen. Praise ye the LORD.


Thursday, December 13, 2007

The Ten Commandments of Christmas

1. Thou shalt not leave "Christ" out of Christmas.

2. Thou shalt not value thy gifts by their cost, for many shall signify love that is more blessed and beautiful than silver and gold.

3. Thou shalt give thyself with thy gifts. Thy love, thy personality, and thy service shall increase the value of thy gifts a hundred fold and he that receiveth them shall treasure them forever.

4. Thou shall not let Santa Claus take the place of Christ, lest Christmas should become a fairy tale, rather than a sublime reality in the spiritual realm.

5. Thou shalt not burden thy servants, the salespersons, the mail carrier and the merchants. They all shall have thy consideration.

6. Thou shalt not neglect the Church. Its Christmas services are planned to help spiritualise the Christmas season for thee, thy family and thy friends.

7. Thou shalt not neglect the needy. Let they bountiful blessings be shared with the many who will go hungry and cold unless thou art generous at Christmas.

8. Thou shalt be as a little child. Christmas is the day of the Christ Child; not until thou have become in spirit as a little child art thou ready to enter into the Kingdom of Heaven.

9. Thou shalt prepare thy soul for Christmas. Verily most of us spend much time and money getting gifts ready, but few seconds in preparing our souls.

10. Thou shalt give thy heart to Christ. Let thy Christmas list have Christ in thy heart at the top as thy gift to Him this Christmas.

Author Unknown

A Baby's Hug

We were the only family with children in the restaurant. I sat Erik in a high chair and noticed everyone was quietly sitting and talking.

Suddenly, Erik squealed with glee and said, 'Hi.' He pounded his fat baby hands on the high chair tray. His eyes were crinkled in laughter and his mouth was bared in a toothless grin, as he wriggled and giggled with merriment. I looked around and saw the source of his merriment.

It was a man whose pants were baggy with a zipper at half-mast and his toes poked out of would-be shoes. His shirt was dirty and his hair was uncombed and unwashed. His whiskers were too short to be called a beard and his nose was so varicose it looked like a road map.

We were too far from him to smell, but I was sure he smelled. His hands waved and flapped on loose wrists. 'Hi there,baby; hi there, big boy. I see ya, buster,' the man said to Erik. My husband and I exchanged looks, 'What do we do?' Erik continued to laugh and answer, 'Hi.'

Everyone in the restaurant noticed and looked at us and then at the man. The old geezer was creating a nuisance with my beautiful baby. Our meal came and the man began shouting from across the room, 'Do ya patty cake? Do you know peek-a-boo? Hey, look, he knows peek-a-boo.'

Nobody thought the old man was cute. He was obviously drunk. My husband and I were embarrassed. We ate in silence; all except for Erik, who was running through his repertoire for the admiring skid-row bum, who in turn, reciprocated with his cute comments.

We finally got through the meal and headed for the door. My husband went to pay the check and told me to meet him in the parking lot.

The old man sat poised between me and the door. 'Lord, just let me out of here before he speaks to me or Erik,' I prayed.

As I drew closer to the man, I turned my back trying to sidestep him and avoid any air he might be breathing. As I did, Erik leaned over my arm, reaching with both arms in a baby's 'pick-me-up' position.

Before I could stop him, Erik had propelled himself from my arms to the arms of the old man.

Suddenly a very old smelly man and a very young baby consummated their love and kinship. Erik in an act of total trust, love, and submission laid his tiny head upon the man's ragged shoulder.

The man's eyes closed, and I saw tears hover beneath his lashes. His aged hands full of grime, pain, and hard labor, cradled my baby's bottom and stroked his back.

No two beings have ever loved so deeply for so short a time.

I stood awestruck. The old man rocked and cradled Erik in his arms and his eyes opened and set squarely on mine. He said in a firm commanding voice, 'You take care of this baby.' Somehow I managed, 'I will,' from a throat that contained a stone.

He pried Erik from his chest, lovingly and longingly, as though he were in pain. I received my baby, and the man said, 'God bless you, ma'am, you've given me my Christmas gift.'

I said nothing more than a muttered thanks. With Erik in my arms,
I ran for the car. My husband was wondering why I was crying and holding Erik so tightly, and why I was saying, 'My God, my God, forgive me.'

I had just witnessed Christ's love shown through the innocence of a tiny child who saw no sin, who made no judgment; a child who saw a soul, and a mother who saw a suit of clothes.

I was a Christian who was blind, holding a child who was not. I felt it was God asking, 'Are you willing to share your son for a moment?' when He shared His for all eternity.

The ragged old man, unwittingly, had reminded me, 'To enter the Kingdom of God, we must become as little children.'

Author Unknown


Hymns - Day 29 - Sweetly the Holy Hymn

(Psa 123:1) [A Song of degrees.] Unto thee lift I up mine eyes, O thou that dwellest in the heavens. This photo was taken by Carol Meyer at Jasper National Park in Alberta, Canada. Isn't it beautiful? Carol has given me permission to use her beautiful photographs and so many of them (actually most of them) are of nature - God's beauty! Thank you, Carol for allowing me to use your beautiful work!

This photograph reminds me of the condition of my heart when I come to meet with the Lord. I look to the heavens to see my God and I prepare my heart to meet Him there. (Psa 113:5) Who is like unto the LORD our God, who dwelleth on high,

Today's hymn is one that I have never heard before. But I love Charles Spurgeon and knew that anything that he wrote had to be beautiful! Sure enough, I was not disapponted in the least. Brother Spurgeon was born June 19, 1834, in Kelvedon, Essex, England and passed away on January 31, 1892, in Montone, France. Although he was a well known preacher, he wrote several hymns which were collected into a work called "A Collection of Psalms and Hymns for Public, Social, and Private Worship, 1866." By the time Spurgeon reached the age of 21, he was the most popular preacher in London! He had no formal education yet he preached to thousands in his life time. God used him mightily.

He not only preached but he pastored, he founded churches, Sunday schools, and an orphanage, he also founded the Pastor's College, and he also edited a monthly church magazine! He was definitely busy for the Lord. Today, many of us read the daily devotionals by Spurgeon. He continues to touch the lives of people and will continue to do so even after we're gone.

There were two things I read in his biography that impressed me about this man: (1) He was not timid about calling out error in the Church of England or amongst his own Baptist circles and (2) he absolutely grieved over the trend of the day toward biblical criticism.

Today's hymn shares with us a desire to meet with the Lord in prayer and song. Spurgeon spoke of his walk each day as a battle and the need to prepare for this battle by meeting with His God!

Sweetly the Holy Hymn
Charles H. Spurgeon

Sweetly the holy hymn
Breaks on the morning air;
Before the world with smoke is dim
We meet to offer prayer.

While flowers are wet with dews,
Dew of our souls, descend:
Ere yet the sun the day renews,
O Lord, Thy Spirit send.

Upon the battlefield,
Before the fight begins,
We seek, O Lord, Thy sheltering shield,
To guard us from our sins.

Ere yet our vessel sails
Upon the stream of day
We plead, O Lord, for heavenly gales
To speed us on our way!

On the lone mountain side,
Before the morning’s light,
The Man of sorrows wept and cried,
And rose refreshed with might.

Oh, hear us then, for we
Are very weak and frail,
We make the Savior’s Name our plea,
And surely must prevail.

Our Saviour's name will surely prevail! It was interesting to find three verses in the Word that described how every knee would bow at the name of Jesus! The number three symbolizes the Trinity in the Word.

(Isa 45:23) 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.

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

(Phil 2:10) That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth;

Praise the Lord!

Labels: ,

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Hymns - Day 28 - A New Name in Glory!

This beautiful picture was taken by my son, Adam, when we were touring Monticello (Thomas Jefferson's home). A storm was coming through and we could see the lightning in the distance. Adam caught this picture just before the storm reached us. When I look at it, I am reminded that our Saviour will one day return for His sheep! (Act 1:9-11) And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight. (9) And while they looked stedfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel; (10) Which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven. (11) Aren't you excited?

As we celebrate the time of His birth, let us not forget that His was not an ordinary birth. Jesus Christ's life was no ordinary life! His death was no ordinary death! (Mat 28:6) He is not here: for he is risen, as he said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay. Christ conquered death and took on our punishment so that we may one day live with Him for all eternity. (1 Cor 15:55-57) O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory? (55) The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law. (56) But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. (57)

Because of this wonderful act of love from our Saviour, we are able to sing today's hymn and rejoice! We covered this author yesterday so I won't repeat myself and will just continue on with this blessed hymn!

A New Name in Glory
Charles Austin Miles

I was once a sinner, but I came
Pardon to receive from my Lord:
This was freely given, and I found
That He always kept His word.


There’s a new name written down in glory,
And it’s mine, O yes, it’s mine!
And the white robed angels sing the story,
“A sinner has come home.”
For there’s a new name written down in glory,
And it’s mine, O yes, it’s mine!
With my sins forgiven I am bound for Heaven,
Never more to roam.

I was humbly kneeling at the cross,
Fearing naught but God’s angry frown;
When the heavens opened and I saw
That my name was written down.


In the Book ’tis written, “Saved by Grace,”
O the joy that came to my soul!
Now I am forgiven, and I know
By the blood I am made whole.


Is your name written down in glory? For every born-again believer, singing this song is an encouragement to a weary spirit! Christ gave Himself for you and for me! Does that not touch you to the core?

(Gal 1:4) Who gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil world, according to the will of God and our Father:

(Gal 2:20) I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.

(Tit 2:14) Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.

(1 Jn 5:10) He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself: he that believeth not God hath made him a liar; because he believeth not the record that God gave of his Son.

Why did Jesus do this for us? Why would He give Himself for us? Oh the blessed love of God! When I read these two verses, I am drawn to tears that my Lord would love us so much that He would do this for us! (Heb 2:17-18) Wherefore in all things it behoved him to be made like unto his brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people. (17) For in that he himself hath suffered being tempted, he is able to succour them that are tempted. (18)

Jesus Christ, the Perfect Lamb of God and our Saviour, voluntarily came to earth for the sole purpose of being tempted, living a sinless life and then dying so that He could take on our penalty of sin so we would not burn for all eternity! He stands before the Father as our High Priest always making intercession for us! (Heb 7:25) Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them. We are saved to the uttermost! Noah Webster defines this word as:
UT'TERMOST, a. [utter and most.] Extreme; being in the furthest, greatest or highest degree; as the uttermost extent or end; the uttermost distress.
Strong's Concordance says:
From G3956 and G5056; full ended, that is, entire (neuter as noun, completion): - + in [no] wise, uttermost.
Can one be partially saved? If you are drowning and a rescuer comes to save you, does he save you then allow you to start drowning again and then save you again - so on and so forth? If you are burning in a fire, does the fire fighter save you, throw you back in only to save you again? If you are lost in your sin, does the Saviour die on the cross for your sins only to have to go die again because your salvation was lost? It sounds absurd when put it in this light, doesn't it? But the definitions are awesome - they are clear to me! The Lord wants you to know that you have been saved to the uttermost - to completion - entirely. That means your sins from the past, present and future have been paid for, entirely, by Christ Himself! Glory! This does not give you the right to continue living your old sinful life and not change. For the Word says (2 Cor 5:17) Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. Anyone who is grateful for being saved from eternal punishment burning in a lake of fire will not remain the same. They will allow the Holy Spirit of God to change them out of appreciation to Christ for what He has done!

What a lovely thought for today! (Phil 4:3) And I intreat thee also, true yokefellow, help those women which laboured with me in the gospel, with Clement also, and with other my fellowlabourers, whose names are in the book of life. My name is written in the book of life - Jesus knows my name and my name is written down in glory! (Joh 10:3) To him the porter openeth; and the sheep hear his voice: and he calleth his own sheep by name, and leadeth them out.

(Psa 100:4) Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name.

Labels: ,

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Twas the Month Before Christmas

Twas the month before Christmas
When all through our land,
Not a Christian was praying
Nor taking a stand.

Why the Politically Correct Police had taken away,
The reason for Christmas - no one could say.
The children were told by their schools not to sing,
About Shepherds and Wise Men and Angels and things.

It might hurt people's feelings, the teachers would say
December 25th is just a ' Holiday '.
Yet the shoppers were ready with cash, checks and credit.
Pushing folks down to the floor just to get it!

CDs from Madonna, an X BOX, an I-pod.
Something was changing, something quite odd!
Retailers promoted Ramadan and Kwanzaa
In hopes to sell books by Franken & Fonda.

As Targets were hanging their trees upside down
At Lowe's the word Christmas - was no where to be found.
At K-Mart and Staples and Penny's and Sears
You won't hear the word Christmas; it won't touch your ears.

Inclusive, sensitive, Di-ver-is-ty
Are words that were used to intimidate me.
Now Daschle, Now Darden, Now Sharpton, Wolf Blitzen
On Boxer, on Rather, on Kerry, on Clinton !

At the top of the Senate, there arose such a clatter
To eliminate Jesus, in all public matter.
And we spoke not a word, as they took away our faith
Forbidden to speak of salvation and grace.

The true Gift o f Christmas was exchangednd discarded
The reason for the season, stopped before it started.
So as you celebrate 'Winter Break' under your 'Dream Tree'
Sipping your Starbucks, listen to me.
Choose your words carefully, choose what you say
Shout MERRY CHRISTMAS, not Happy Holiday !

Author Unknown

Hymns - Day 27 - In the Garden

(Rev 3:20) Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me. I absolutely love this verse! The Lord could have picked a different word than sup here. He could have said, "I will talk with him," or "I will sit with him." Instead, Christ picked the word sup. There's nothing more intimate than a meal together. Family meal time is a precious time for me. I look forward to sitting down with my family after a long day and reconnecting with one another. I love to hear the chatter and laughter - it's music to my ears.

One of Jesus' names is "the Word of God." I truly believe that Christ picked every word written in the Bible and chose each word very carefully. I believe He had every intention to use the word sup here. The Lord desires to make entrance into our lives and meet with us. Not just to talk, but to actually have an intimate time - a meal, if you will. He desires to sit with us for more than just a few minutes but for the time it takes to have a meal. He desires to have that chatter and laughter, and sometimes even tears, in our time with Him.

Today's hymn is also one of my favorites. It really should be accompanied with Revelation 3:20 whenever it is sung, don't you think? The songs we sing should stir our hearts and bring the Scriptures to life, stirring our hearts. This beautiful hymn was written by Charles Austin Miles. Mr. Miles was born on January 7, 1868, and passed away on March 10, 1946. He started out his career as a pharmacist but left it to write Gospel music. His first song was "List 'Tis Jesus' Voice." I loved this quote by him,
It is as a writer of gospel songs I am proud to be known, for in that way I may be of the most use to my Master, whom I serve willingly although not as efficiently as is my desire.
His desires were fulfilled, I would say! We sing a few of his songs in our own church.

In the Garden
Charles Austin Miles

I come to the garden alone
While the dew is still on the roses
And the voice I hear falling on my ear
The Son of God discloses.


And He walks with me, and He talks with me,
And He tells me I am His own;
And the joy we share as we tarry there,
None other has ever known.

He speaks, and the sound of His voice,
Is so sweet the birds hush their singing,
And the melody that He gave to me
Within my heart is ringing.


I’d stay in the garden with Him
Though the night around me be falling,
But He bids me go; through the voice of woe
His voice to me is calling.


(Psa 5:3) My voice shalt thou hear in the morning, O LORD; in the morning will I direct my prayer unto thee, and will look up.

(Joh 10:27) My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me:

(Psa 128:1) [A Song of degrees.] Blessed is every one that feareth the LORD; that walketh in his ways.

(Joh 10:29) My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father's hand.

(Mar 4:39) And he arose, and rebuked the wind, and said unto the sea, Peace, be still. And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm.

(Php 4:6) Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.

(Php 4:7) And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

When I sing this song, my heart is stirred to the Word. I think of my Saviour's voice calling to me to get saved - Praise the Lord! I think of how I was placed into the Saviour's care by the Father and no one can remove me from that care. I can meet with Him any time I want - any where I want and He is there. The One who created me and all that is around me can still any storm in my life and provide the peace which passes all understanding.

It is a joy being saved, amen?! It is a joy to meet with the Saviour in our "garden"!

Labels: ,

Monday, December 10, 2007

Hymns - Day 26 - Just As I Am

(Psa 121:1-2) [A Song of degrees.] I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help. (1) My help cometh from the LORD, which made heaven and earth. (2) These two verses have been my encouragement and my prayer so many times. In fact, I have probably used Psalm 121 more than any other Scripture in my writings.

The unbeliever cannot claim such a verse because he does not have a relationship with the God who provides such promise. In order for a person to be heard of God, he must be saved. (Psa 66:18) If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me: We all regard iniquity in our hearts. (Rom 3:10) As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: Therefore, God does not hear the sinner's prayers until he has accepted Christ as his Saviour and is now clothed in the righteousness of His own Son.

(Eze 33:13) When I shall say to the righteous, that he shall surely live; if he trust to his own righteousness, and commit iniquity, all his righteousnesses shall not be remembered; but for his iniquity that he hath committed, he shall die for it. It's not by our own righteousness that we are able to gain entrance into the Holy of Holies to commune with our God. God regards our righteousness as a filthy rag! (Isa 64:6) But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away. Because Christ's blood covers the born-again believer, our sins are no longer seen by the Father. (Psa 103:12) As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us.

Since our own righteousness is not acceptable in God's eyes, then neither are our own works. We have to come to God knowing that there is nothing in our lives that can be allowed in Heaven. We deserve eternal punishment because of our sinful nature. We must come to him broken and humble knowing that there is nothing that we can do for salvation. God is the one who is in charge of salvation - salvation through Christ Jesus! (Jon 2:9) But I will sacrifice unto thee with the voice of thanksgiving; I will pay that that I have vowed. Salvation is of the LORD.

With that in mind, I was drawn to the "invitational" song, Just As I Am, this morning, written by Charlotte Elliott. Miss Elliott was born March 18, 1789, and died September 22, 1871.

Just as I am, without one plea,
Charlotte Elliott

Just as I am, without one plea,
But that Thy blood was shed for me,
And that Thou bidst me come to Thee,
O Lamb of God, I come, I come.

Just as I am, and waiting not
To rid my soul of one dark blot,
To Thee whose blood can cleanse each spot,
O Lamb of God, I come, I come.

Just as I am, though tossed about
With many a conflict, many a doubt,
Fightings and fears within, without,
O Lamb of God, I come, I come.

Just as I am, poor, wretched, blind;
Sight, riches, healing of the mind,
Yea, all I need in Thee to find,
O Lamb of God, I come, I come.

Just as I am, Thou wilt receive,
Wilt welcome, pardon, cleanse, relieve;
Because Thy promise I believe,
O Lamb of God, I come, I come.

Just as I am, Thy love unknown
Hath broken every barrier down;
Now, to be Thine, yea, Thine alone,
O Lamb of God, I come, I come.

Just as I am, of that free love
The breadth, length, depth, and height to prove,
Here for a season, then above,
O Lamb of God, I come, I come!

This beautiful song shows the humbleness of heart of its author. Miss Elliott became an invalid when she was around 30. I loved reading what she wrote about her severe physical condition (very similar to that of chronic fatigue):
My Heavenly Father knows, and He alone, what it is, day af­ter day, and hour af­ter hour, to fight against bodily feelings of almost over­pow­er­ing weak­ness and lang­uor and ex­haust­ion, to re­solve, as He en­a­bles me to do, not to yield to the sloth­ful­ness, the de­press­ion, the ir­ri­ta­bil­i­ty, such as a bo­dy caus­es me to long to in­dulge, but to rise ev­ery morn­ing de­term­ined on tak­ing this for my mot­to, “If any man will come af­ter me, let him de­ny him­self, take up his cross dai­ly, and fol­low me.”
In my readings, I discovered that when Dr. Cesar Malan (of Geneva) came to her father's house to visit, he caused her to think about her salvation. Because of her illness, she was irritable toward Dr. Malan and told him she did not wish to discuss religion. Dr. Malan's humble response to her was that he would not continue the discussion but would pray that she accept Christ as her Saviour. The Holy Spirit used this to convict her and she apologized to Dr. Malan a few weeks later. She asked him how she could be saved and his response was to come to Jesus "just as you are." She was saved and later was moved to write this beautiful hymn.

She is a testimony to those who suffer from chronic illness. Her life since her salvation was devoted to writing. This hymn was published in the "Invalid's Hymn Book." Despite her ailment, she made herself useful - she edited the Religious Remembrancer magazine and wrote 31 hymns, according to Cyberhymnal. What a blessing it is to read about how God used her despite her illness. She replaced her bitterness with a servant's humble heart. This heart was reflected in today's hymn, wasn't it?

I hope Charlotte's testimony was a blessing to you today. If you are suffering from a chronic illness or you are dying from an illness, please take heart today. Your service for Christ does not need to end. In fact, you need His comfort in your life even more now than ever! There is joy and peace that comes with serving Him - a peace which goes past any understanding you will ever have. (Php 4:7) And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. When our hearts and minds are fixed on Christ and His will for our lives, we receive blessed peace. The world looks a Christian who is going through such a trial and witnesses a person who is not eaten up with bitterness but one that is glorifying the Lord in his work for Him!

Labels: ,

The Fundamental Top 500