Isaiah 58

April 24th, 2012

This scriptural nugget is of tremendous value, for it is very heavy indeed. This passage is transforming my life.

1 “Shout it aloud, do not hold back.
Raise your voice like a trumpet.
Declare to my people their rebellion
and to the descendants of Jacob their sins.

2 For day after day they seek me out;
they seem eager to know my ways,
as if they were a nation that does what is right
and has not forsaken the commands of its God.
They ask me for just decisions
and seem eager for God to come near them.

3 ‘Why have we fasted,’ they say,
‘and you have not seen it?
Why have we humbled ourselves,
and you have not noticed?’
“Yet on the day of your fasting, you do as you please
and exploit all your workers.

4 Your fasting ends in quarreling and strife,
and in striking each other with wicked fists.
You cannot fast as you do today
and expect your voice to be heard on high.

5 Is this the kind of fast I have chosen,
only a day for people to humble themselves?
Is it only for bowing one’s head like a reed
and for lying in sackcloth and ashes?
Is that what you call a fast,
a day acceptable to the Lord?

6 “Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen:
to loose the chains of injustice
and untie the cords of the yoke,
to set the oppressed free
and break every yoke?

7 Is it not to share your food with the hungry
and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter‚
when you see the naked, to clothe them,
and not to turn away from your own flesh and blood?

8 Then your light will break forth like the dawn,
and your healing will quickly appear;
then your righteousness will go before you,
and the glory of the Lord will be your rear guard.

9 Then you will call, and the Lord will answer;
you will cry for help, and he will say: Here am I.
“If you do away with the yoke of oppression,
with the pointing finger and malicious talk,

10 and if you spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry
and satisfy the needs of the oppressed,
then your light will rise in the darkness,
and your night will become like the noonday.

11 The Lord will guide you always;
he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land
and will strengthen your frame.
You will be like a well-watered garden,
like a spring whose waters never fail.

12 Your people will rebuild the ancient ruins
and will raise up the age-old foundations;
you will be called Repairer of Broken Walls,
Restorer of Streets with Dwellings.

13 “If you keep your feet from breaking the Sabbath
and from doing as you please on my holy day,
if you call the Sabbath a delight
and the Lord’s holy day honorable,
and if you honor it by not going your own way
and not doing as you please or speaking idle words,

14 then you will find your joy in the Lord,
and I will cause you to ride in triumph on the heights of the land
and to feast on the inheritance of your father Jacob.”
For the mouth of the Lord has spoken.

II Timothy 3:16-17

April 23rd, 2012

“All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished to all good works.”

God Bless America

April 9th, 2012

I am all for “God Bless America”, but what I would really like to see is “America Bless God”.

Psalm 34:19

March 10th, 2012

Many are the afflictions of the righteous: but the LORD delivers him out of them all.

Psalm 37:16

March 10th, 2012

A little that a righteous man has is better than the riches of many wicked.

What’s up with the church?

March 2nd, 2012

Lord, what’s up with the church?

In Your word, the fourth commandment tells us to honor the Sabbath on the last day of the week. The church honors their sabbath on the first day of the week.

In Your word Christ gave His disciples unleavened bread that represented His sinless body and red wine that represented His blood and commanded them to eat and drink these in remembrance of Him, whenever they met. The church gives you leavened bread and grape juice, on special occasions.

In Your word when Your people prayed to You they looked up to Your dwelling place, whether it be in the glorious heavens or Your temple, with open hands raised up high ready to receive from You. The church teaches and encourages people to bow their face to the ground and close their hands together.

In your word when Your people worshipped You they sang and danced with abandonment, and made a joyful noise in celebration of Your glory. In church one follows a carefully choreographed music program where you may be encouraged or discouraged from clapping your hands, but don’t get too joyful.

In your word Your Holy Spirit was present any time two or more gathered in Your Name, as evidenced by miracles, healings, prophecy, deliverance, and more. In church Your Spirit may be present but how would one know, where is the evidence of Your power?

In Your word we are to be one spirit, one body, one baptism, and one mind, the mind of Christ. In church we are Baptists, Lutherans, Methodists, etc.

Lord I don’t want to forsake the gathering of myself with other believers, but where do I find others who believe on and live by Your words. Sadly not in the church. I’m to the point of giving up the search for the “right” church. You will not be bound to buildings. I will worship you in spirit and in truth right where I am at.

I will honor You on Your appointed Sabbath and commune with You on Your sinless body and blood.
I will pray to You in expectancy with head held high, outstretched arms, and open hands.
I will worship you with joyful abandonment in song and dance.
I will expect to see Your Holy Spirit move in great power.
And We will be one spirit, one body, one mind.
So be it.

1 John 3:17

March 2nd, 2012

But if any one has the world’s goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how does God’s love abide in him? [RSV]

John 3:17

March 2nd, 2012

For God sent the Son into the world, not to condemn the world, but that the world might be saved through him. [RSV]

Psalm 82:2-4

October 3rd, 2011

How long will you judge unjustly, and accept the persons of the wicked? Selah. Defend the poor and fatherless: do justice to the afflicted and needy. Deliver the poor and needy: rid them out of the hand of the wicked.

Push Away From The Table, And Serve

January 14th, 2009

Server_with_Tray“All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished to all good works.”

I know this is not a very popular concept these days, and probably never has been. I’m sure we would all rather be the one sitting in a restaurant being served than the one who is actually doing the serving. I assume that those in service positions would be the first to agree with this statement, considering the way some people treat them.
Of course the point of my writing this is not about restaurants, It’s actually about the church. Unfortunately, I have seen and known many who profess to be Christians and faithfully attend church, yet are possibly the worst customers one could imagine. Year after year they show up once a week, demand a good seat, complain about the service and entertainment, and then begrudgingly leave a tip, or perhaps not. The worst part is that they seem to leave in the same state as they were when they came in.
Now I know that we all need to be “fed” spiritually, just as we do physically, but my point is that after a little while you would think that they would learn to feed themselves, during the week, so as to get the nutrition that they need to grow on. When they try to get all of their fulfillment out of one hour of spiritual milk on weekends, It’s no wonder they leave church feeling dissatisfied.
Of course, as newborn babes we should desire the sincere milk of the word, that we may grow thereby. [1 Peter 2:2] But there also should come a time when we no longer have to be bottle fed. We should mature enough to pick up God’s precious words of life in our own hands, so that the Holy Spirit can speak to us personally through His word.
If all the spiritual nutrition you are getting is an hour or two a week, then indeed you are still on milk, not solid food. [1 Corinthians 3:1-3] In fact, some of you ought to be teachers by now, but you still only come to the table once a week to hear the elementary truths of God’s word all over again. Do you still need milk, not solid food? Anyone who lives on milk is still an infant in Christ and is not acquainted with the teaching of righteousness. [Hebrews 5:12-14]
If one were getting all the spiritual nutrition needed, then they would probably remember that Christ himself came to earth to serve, not to be served. [Mark 10:45] He spent all His time on earth ministering to the needs of others, with the only exception being when He went to a solitary place to spend time with His Father. [Mark 1:35] I urge everyone to follow Christ’s example and be filled by the Spirit all through the week, so that you are always well fed and ready for service.
In the body of Christ every member is a minister. We need to live each and every day as mature members who are able to push away from the table to serve the hundreds whom we encounter that are hungry and thirsty in this world. Then we will be filled with the kind of love and compassion that Jesus had, and always meet every physical need within our means like He did. Then at last the world will see a perfect example of the Body of Christ, and we will see an abundance of fruit, and a plentiful harvest.
To God be the Glory! Amen