CHANGE (2)

I am very aware that non-verbal communication (like a blog) can have it challenges, and is easily open to misinterpretation even more than verbal communication can. I say this as I decided some time ago to become a member of a number of Theological Forums on FB, definitely NOT to be argumentative or political as I refuse to enter into such discussions. Some of the groups are Charismatic/Pentecostal, others are Reformed (or not) I joined because of the principle of “iron sharpens iron” as I do not ever want to be inflexible and closed when it comes to Theological truth.

I have said all of the above because so many of the responses on these forums, are so vociferous and unrighteous and simply evil, for example if you don’t hold a particular aspect of truth you are not saved and even demonically influenced.

I am starting today to develop the CHANGE ACROSTIC and the first one is CHRIST CENTRED LIVES. I am reminded of a couple of choruses I loved and sang in my youth.

TO BE LIKE JESUS! THIS HOPE POSSESSES ME,

IN EVERY THOUGHT AND DEED, THIS IS MY AIM MY CREED;

TO BE LIKE JESUS!  THIS HOPE POSSESSES ME, 

HIS SPIRIT HELPING ME, LIKE HIM I’LL BE.

THEN

TO BE LIKE JESUS, TO BE LIKE JESUS

ALL I ASK- TO BE LIKE HIM

ALL THROUGH LIFE’S JOURNEY FROM EARTH TO GLORY

ALL I ASK -TO BE LIKE HIM

To be a Christian does not mean that our primary task is to make sure our doctrine is “pure”. Although “pure doctrine is very important, I love the saying that we simply say we have agreement on the essentials and liberty on the non essentials. It is all about becoming MORE LIKE JESUS. There are so many “deceptions in the Christian world like”

If I strictly keep a lengthy list of rules I am doing good.

If I attend church EVERY  time the door is open I am doing good

If I serve in as many departments as I can I am doing good

NO NO NO

I think it really boils down to two things

1.SPENDING QUALITY TIME IN THE PRESENCE OF GOD IN PRAYER

King David says in Psalm m 17: 15 “As for me, I will see your face in righteousness, I shall be SATISFIED, when I awake in your likeness”. NKJV

The word “transform in the Greek is metamorpoo, we all know what metamorphosis means, the very best illustration is the:

the hairy caterpillar turning into a beautiful butterfly

We cannot help but become like the people we hang around with, so David is saying the more quality time I spend in God’s presence THE MORE I WILL BE CHANGED (transformed)  INTO HIS LIKENESS.  Amen

2.SPEND QUALITY TIME IN THE WORD OF GOD,

Not just reading it, but meditating upon it, so that the logos becomes the Rhema, God’s divine sperma so that “conception” takes place in our spirit, and more and more of God’s DNA  is imparted into us.  So that the fruit (the nature of God) of the Spirit  develops in us more and more, and people will see Jesus in us. More and more we will have the mind of Christ, more and more we will want to do His will, more and more we will keep falling in love with Jesus. More and more we will want ot live above sin and walk in victory and purity and power.

I know I have said the above many times, and will continue to say because being a Christian is all about:

BECOMING MORE AND MORE LIKE JESUS EVERY DAY

IT IS ALL ABOUT OUR CHARACTER IS CHANGING AND WE ARE  BECOMING MORE AND MORE LIKE JESUS.

I am not saying these two things are the only things we need to do, but if you do these two things, you will constantly grow in grace and in the knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ, and  flowing out of these two things will automatically come an ever increasing desire to serve  the Lord in any and every way we can.

By the grace of God I want to become more and more like Jesus in 2018, I need to change, I want to change. I must change.

I TRUST THIS IS YOUR HEART’S DESIRE TOO.

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HEART PREPARATION BEFORE INTERCESSION

One of the areas that the devil has deceived believers is in the area of the importance of prayer, many of course have never been Biblically Discipled and have never had anyone walk with them until prayer becomes a lifestyle.

Related to this deception is sadly the common attitude that having a “QUIET TIME” is old hat, and so they say when you are driving for example slip up a prayer if you need too. My response is it is not either or, but both, as prayer must be constant   in our hearts, remember Paul said PRAY WITHOUT CEASING  1 Thessalonians 5:17

What I want to share with you today, and I trust it will greatly help is that we must”

PREPAARE OUR HEARTS BEFORE WE SPEND TIME IN INTERCESSION.

Before I spend time in prayer for others, I spend considerable time preparing my heart to do so. This is what I do.

  1. I pray King David’s prayer in Psalm 139: 23-24 NKJV Search me O God and know my heart; try me and know my anxieties; and see if there is any is any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.    I want to make sure there is no unconfessed sin in my heart because again the psalmist says in Psalm 66:18 NKJV I I regard (have) sin in my heart THE LORD WILL NOT HEAR.
  2. I cannot remember all  my sins so I list all my possible sins  in thought, in word, in action, in reaction, any sins of omission, or things said and done, not in faith  (but in doubt, fear and unbelief) any mixture in my motives and attitudes) or any wilful sins, If I have violated  God’s will, His Way or His Word, I pray GOD BE MERCIFUL TO ME A SINNER, and claim on the basis of the finished work of Christ His forgiveness. The assurance quickly comes there is now nothing between me and the Lord, and I know IT IS WELL WITH MY SOUL Hallelujah
  3. I specifically re-affirm Christ’s Lordship over my life Romans 12:1) and constantly and regularly present my body to the Lord, and ask the Lord to re-fill the House, and let the Holy Spirit have complete control over my life.
  4. I then take the Psalmist’s words very seriously in Psalm 100:4 I enter His gates with thanksgiving, and into His courts with praise.  I spend time considering what was  being depicted at the brazen altar, and thank the Lord, he became our Lamb, I consider the cleansing power of the Word of God as depicted in the brazen laver, I then thank God for the third cleansing power expressed in the oil and flame of the lampstand and the illumination  the Holy Spirit gives me in the Word of God. I then thank God for the food to make me grow as expressed in the manna, then I thank God for the privilege of prayer as expressed in the altar of incense, then push through the veil of my fears and doubts and laziness and bow down and worship the Lord in the Spirit and in truth.
  5. MY HEART IS PREPARED AND NOW I AM READY TO SPEND TIME IN INTERCESSION
  6. I happen to have a  list of things I THANK the Lord for, and a PRAISE LIST.  and a very long of matters I intercede to the Lord about.
  7. DON’T BE IN A HURRY  HEART PREPARATION IS IMPORTANT AND I BELIEVE ESSENTIAL.
  8. Let me remind you of what I believe are the eight (8) ESSENTIAL INGREDIENTS TO DAILY PRAYER. 1. Confession & Repentance 2. Reaffirming Christ’s Lordship, 3 Thanksgiving, . Praise, 5. Worship, 6, Intercession, 7. Petition (prayers for yourself) please note 7 not no. 1.   8. Listening.
  9. CAN YOU BELIEVE FOR AN OPEN HEAVEN ?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CAN YOU BELIEVE FOR AN “OPEN HEAVEN”

South Korea has lived under the constant threat of war since 1953, when only a truce was declared between them and North Korea. Just over 100 years ago there was not a Christian church building in the whole country, now 55% of South Korea profess to be Christian.

When I was there in 1978, there was a nightly curfew, and weekly air raid precaution practices, where for example drivers would have to pull over to the side of the road and look for a Shelter.

The Christian church in the 1950’s introduced early morning prayer meetings (for almost every day in the week) a weekly all night prayer meeting. Many churches have their own Prayer Mountains where Believers go and fast and pray. The largest Methodist and Presbyterian churches in the world are located in Seoul, as is the Yoido Full Gospel church with 800.000 members founded by Dr. Paul Yonggi Cho. I personally heard Dr. Cho  say the church in South Korea ministers under an OPEN HEAVEN. What did he mean by that. Most Theologians believe that over every city and nation there are spiritual (demonic) forces that seek in every possible way to stop the Church fulfilling its eternal destiny including its praying. The concerted prayers of the Church in South Korea (as far as Dr. Cho is concerned) has broken down these forces.

GOD HAS NO FAVOURITES WHAT HE HAS DONE IN SOUTH KOREA, HE CAN DO IN OUR NATION AMEN

I guess we do not want to live under the constant threat of war, but what would it take for the Church in my nation and yours to get DESPERATE ENOUGH  to pray with such intensity that the spiritual  forces over our city and nation are driven back.

The enemy of our souls (and the Church) has used DECEPTION as his subtle tool to bewitch the Church and cause us to be blind against his wiles (Eph. 6:11) and make us powerless. He has done such a good job that he is becoming more open than ever now winning the battle over for example same sex marriage and we could go on and on.

I don’t know whether I have the answer, I know what the Word of God says and so do my readers. The evil one’s powers  were  TOTALLY destroyed when Jesus died on the cross and rose again, and yet he seeks to take back this authority he lost.

I want to challenge you to pray and believe for an OPEN HEAVEN in your world, that unsaved (and backslidden) loved ones and friends will return to the Lord, that “signs and wonders” will follow the preaching of God’s Word, that this generation of Believers WILL TURN THE WORLD UPDIDE DOWN, that we see the fields are white unto harvest, that it is HARVEST TIME NOW.

I am going to write another blog this afternoon on preparing our heart to pray  that may help us to become PRAYER WARRIORS.

WILL YOU ACCEPT THE CHALLENGE TO BELIEVE WE CAN MINISTER UNDER AN OPEN HEAVEN?

 

 

PRAYING IN TONGUES FOR EVERY BELIEVER

As I have had the privilege  of fellowshipping and relating to brothers of various Theological positions over the years, I thank God for the cross pollenation   of thought regarding various truths.  What I am going to share today is an area that I have become more and convinced of Biblically and Theologically. This blog is going to create strong reactions both positively and negatively but it is overdue that I personally  nail my colours to the mast.

I am very aware that there are many Schools of Thought and interpretation when it comes to Theology, I am also conscious that we do not build doctrine on experience and/or history or statistics. I am sure many Theologians  (including myself) will be surprised in eternity that what they believed was not 100% correct. This is what I want to share today and what I believe with all my heart.

THAT EVERY BELIEVER CAN AND SHOULD REGULARLY PRAY IN TONGUES

The Pentecostal Movement came out of various revivals, and also the Second Blessing Holiness Movements just over 100 years ago. Like most movements in its early days there were extremes and over-emphasis and often unbalanced teaching. Today the Pentecostal/Charismatic movement represents at least 25% (some say closer to 50% of the world’s Christian population) and the majority of these Believers have had a tongues experience (Many of them were taught that they had received the initial physical evidence of being baptized in the Holy Spirit, whilst others were taught they had received one of the Gifts of the Holy Spirit.

General accepted Holy Spirit Theology (Pneumatology) teaches that  when a person is born again and comes to faith, the Holy Spirit comes into their life. The Charismatic movement which began in the 1960’s emphasised this, and would go on and say:

YOU CANNOT HAVE MORE OF THE HOLY SPIRIT BUT HE CAN HAVE MORE OF YOU

It would seem to me, that there is that awesome moment when a Believer consciously surrenders himself totally to God and the Holy Spirit that is in Him, is free to FILL THE HOUSE  (our body) and the Holy Spirit also want to take your tongue and you begin to speak in tongues  for the first time. I think this is another reason why Biblical Discipleship is so important to encourage the new Believer as soon as possible to surrender himself 100% to the Lord. Plus be then encouraged to daily and regularly use his prayer language.

EVERY BELIEVER NEEDS TO BE ENCOURAGED TO LIVE THE SPIRIT FILLED LIFE

Many Reformed (Calvinist) believers have been taught that the Gifts of the Holy Spirit and interestingly they especially spell out, TONGUES PROPHECY AND HEALINGS  all ceased on the death of the last Apostle I really don’t know  the basis of why this is taught. So consequently early Pentecostals were told they were “of the devil” because if God had ceased to give the gift then it must be from the evil one or that they had received a psychosomatic  experience, I have personally been told to my face I was “of the devil”. Today there are many “New Calvinists” who are what is called Continualists and agree the gifts are still available in the 21st century.

It will help if we recognise there are different expressions or functions relative to speaking tongues. Again, many who want to concede that speaking in tongues is still available today, hold it is just one of the 9 gifts in 1 Corinthians 12 and “some” may receive it,  (tongues) and others will receive another gift. In my early days as a Pentecostal Pastor there was I think an overemphasis on the “public” use of tongues and churches were encouraged to have 2 or 3 “messages” in Tongues in a service. My experience was that say in a congregation of 100 people one or 2 people may have the  “public” gift of tongues which require the sister gift of Interpretation of tongues, but everyone one of the hundred happened to speak in tongues privately.

LET US NOT FORGET ALL THE 120 SPOKE IN TONGUES ON THE DAY OF PENTECOST

I hold that there is the “public” expression  of tongues which is limited to few people , but the “private” use can be for every Believer. Why do I say this?

GOD HAS NO FAVOURITES

  1. Praying in tongues is an awesome form of “edifying” oneself. He who speaks in a tongue edifies himself 1 Cor. 14:4 NKJV  Why should just “some” believers  be able to edify themselves in this way, this is inconsistent with I believe the tenor of God’s heart and His Word.
  2. Praying in tongues helps us to pray (and intercede) accurately For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings (with unspeakable yearnings and groanings to deep for utterance (in intelligent speech) Rom. 8:26 NKJV & AMP again it would be inconsistent if this was available only to “some” Believers.
  3. Praying in tongues is a weapon of warfare  Paul tells us we do not wrestle against flesh and blood (Eph. 6:12 but against principalities, against powers against the rulers of darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts in heavenly places so we must pray with ALL prayer and supplication IN THE SPIRIT ((Eph.. 6: 18)
  4. Praying in tongues rests and refreshes the soul  Please read Isaiah 28:11-12, a prophetic word for this day. Read and meditate, I thank God for the Therapy of the Spirit.
  5. Praying in tongues helps to open the floodgates for “Rivers of Living Water” John 7: 37-39   read and meditate.
  6. Praying in tongues is one effective way that we worship the Lord 1 Cor. 14: 15-19  Please read and meditate.

These are some of the reasons why I believe with all my heart that EVERY BELIEVER CAN AND SHOULD PRAY IN TONGUES DAILY.

I personally  believer there is a third expression of speaking in tongues, and that is CORPORATE TONGUES when a congregation  of Believers gather together and worship and sing and pray in the Spirit. This is an “heavenly” experience which I have thoroughly enjoyed.

There is a church in Asia that I have been closely associated with, that was very strong on corporate praying and singing in the Spirit, The church is at least 15000 strong (and at least 75% of the church has come to Christ in the church), which is a remarkable testimony. This has NOT been a turn off to unbelievers, and interestingly Paul tells us, Therefore tongues are a sign, not to those who believe, but to unbelievers but prophesying is NOT for unbelievers but for those who believe. 1 Cor. 14:22 NKJV

From my personal experience and the experience of so many others I personally know and the millions I do not know testify that some of fruit of speaking in tongues causes them and  me to : Love the Lord more

Love His Word more

Love His people more

Live in the light of Christ’s soon return

I have said there are numerous Schools of Thought regarding doctrine and this truth in particular, I am not here to argue with you, I am convinced that what I have written is Biblically correct, and I trust the above will bless and encourage you, please let me know if this is the case. Do I need to remind you that we should pray much in our own language as well.

CHARLES SPURGEON’S CHALLENGE

Especially since the Reformation, it would seem that God has raised up great meN, in every succeeding generation to challenge and encourage the Church to move forward and fulfil its destiny.

One such man  whose writings and ministry has been such a blessing to me personally is Charles Spurgeon a Reformed Baptist Pastor, Preacher, Evangelist and author whose ministry continues to impact Believers  well over 120 years since his death. Please note I said Pastor  and Evangelist, as although he was committed to Reformed truth, was as equally Evangelistic. This is not sadly  a common combination but in his case his writings suggest he continually was  going for souls and for the worst. He equally had a passion to see God’s people growing in grace and in the knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ, and wanted Believers to be passionate about seeing people being born again.

He also had a passion to raise up men to respond to the call of God to ministry, so even commenced a Bible College (which is still going today), and since his death was renamed Spurgeons College. You may find his book “Lectures to my students” of interest. He makes this statement in his lectures:

“Whatever “call” a man may pretend to have, if he has not been called to holiness, he certainly has NOT been called to the ministry”.

We all thank God we have been called out of the Kingdom of darkness into the Kingdom of His dear son, and we rejoice today in knowing “old things have passed away and behold all things have become new. We received that “incorruptible seed” (sperma) into our hearts and conception took place and we were born again.

WE NOW HAVE GOD’S D.N.A.

It is not only God’s plan, but it is essential that daily we spend time in prayer and in the Word, so that we DAILY continue to receive that “incorruptible seed into our life, so we should have a hunger and thirst to be like Jesus, to be holy, to walk in victory, purity and power.  The key is that we MUST  be PROACTIVE and want to see God’s DNA effecting every part of our life.

Spurgeon, sadly suggests that people think they have heard the call of God to ministry, but there is no desire for holiness, even though the writer to Hebrews tells us ” we must pursue peace with all men and HOLINESS WITHOUT WHICH NO MAN CAN SEE GOD” Hebrews 12:14 NKJV

Often in my youth I and so many others of my generation interpreted Holiness in the context of legalism, and many “thou shall nots” but the reality is that if I am born again then I should have heard the “call to holiness”  and this does include many things we should NOT do, this includes what comes out of our mouth, our thought life, our daily behaviour. I often talk about the bias to sin we have and how this will seek to draw us away, and  that is why it is essential we are continually receiving God’s DNA into us through His Word and through spending quality time in His presence.

Like every Preacher, if I am pointing one finger at you, then there are three fingers pointing back at me. I want to encourage you not condemn you,  that in 2018:

WE CAN LIVE GENUINE HOLY VICTORIOUS LIVE3S

For those who are in the Ministry, sometimes you can feel it is two steps forward and three steps back, God is not the author of confusion, if we build our lives “according to pattern” so clearly laid out for us in the Word of God, WE CAN LIVE HOLY LIVES.

LET’S NOT FORGET THE NIKE SLOGAN   JUST DO IT

LET GOD ALWAYS BE IN CONTROL

I want to quote J.C. Ryle (1816-1900) this morning. An Evangelical Anglican Minister and writer and first Bishop of Liverpool U.K.  He made this statement.

NOTHING WHATEVER, WHETHER GREAT OR SMALL, CAN HAPPEN TO A BELIEVER WITHOUT GOD’S ORDERING AND PERMISSION. THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS CHANCE, LUCK OR ACCIDENT IN THE CHRISTIAN JOURNEY THROUGH THIS WORLD. ALL IS ARRANGED AND APPOINTED BY GOD. AND ALL THINGS ARE WORKING TOGETHER FOR THE BELIEVER’S GOOD.

I BELIEVE THIS TO BE A 100% BIBLICAL STATEMENT

There are too many Christians who are more devil conscious than Christ conscious. The Bible clearly tells us that satan’s power and authority was TOTALLY BROKEN when Jesus was crucified and rose again, and some Believers give him an authority that he no longer possesses. We know he hates the Church, and does not want any Believer to be victorious, and Peter reminds us “The devils walks about like a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour” 1 Peter 5:8 NKJV  All he can do is roar and Christians who are ignorant of their inheritance in Christ sadly gives the enemy an authority that he no longer possesses.

WHAT MUST THE NEW COVENANT BELIEVER DO?

James gives us the key in James 3:7 therefore SUBMIT to God, RESIST the devil and he will FLEE from you. NKJV

James echoing the words of Paul in Romans 12:1 Believers MUST learn to the live the SURRENDERED LIFE. (continually) and on that basis, when he roars at us we RESIST him and he MUST run away.

WHAT DOES JAMES MEAN WHEN HE SAYS WE MUST RESIST?

  1. We must PUT on the whole armour of God Ephesians 6:11-18, all 7 pieces of armour and learn to use them.
  2. We must recognise we have been given an authority to use THE NAME OF JESUS.
  3. Confess the Word of God (the Sword of the Spirit) against him  for example confess 1 John 4:4 He who is in me is GREATER the he who is in the world NKJV or Romans 8:37 Yet in all these things we are more than conquerers through Him who loved us NKJV
  4. We must seek to WALK IN THE LIGHT ( of the Word of God and our conscience)      1 John 1:7 But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His son cleanses us from all sin. NKJV

If you foolishly NOT do these things, then you make yourself a candidate for attack.

The devil hates the blood of Jesus, he hates the Name of Jesus, and he sure hates the Word (rhema) of God.

Many Believers when they read Ryle’s statement would initially disagree, because that is not their experience, but we build our lives NOT  on experience but on what the Word of God says. That is why I have written this blog to confirm the truth of Ryle’s statement and emphasising the importance of Believers knowing who they are in Christ and what they have as an inheritance in Christ now. Let us declare “we are KEPT by the power of God through faith. 1Peter 1:5 NKJV and:

And we know that ALL things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose, Romans 8:28 NKJV

This may almost be new teaching to some of my readers, if you want clarification on any of the above please ask me.

May you have a fantastic week of blessing and victory.

 

 

 

ARE YOU WILLING TO CONSIDER CHANGE ?????

Our Pastor began a series of sermons on Sunday about CHANGE,he believes (and so do I)that 2018 will be a YEAR OF CHANGE. both:

PERSONALLY

NATIONALLY and INTERNATIONALLY

IN THE CHURCH (BOTH LOCALLY & INTERNATIONALLY)

Why do people resist and almost hate change?  I don’t often seek the world’s answer to this question, but came across this Harvard Business Review article on 10 REASONS PEOPLE RESIST CHANGE.

1 Loss of control

2. Excess uncertainty

3. Surprise, surprise

4. Everything seems different

5. Loss of face

6. Concerns about competence

7. More work

8. Ripple effects

9. Past resentments

10. Sometimes the threat is real

These reasons are quite self explanatory so I am not going to add or see the need  to develop the points, other than to say, that personally and church wise every one seems very relevant. So we are confronted and challenged with the need of change.NOW

Our Pastor used an acrostic to spell out areas that need to be considered

Christ centred lives

Holy Spirit directed

 A Attitudes that are open to learning and or change

Serving the needy

G God is love

E Evangelism at our core

I like these 6 points and will develop them from my perspective over the next few days.

Only about six months ago I had an eye test as I was not comfortable with my vision. Within weeks of getting my new glasses again I was having trouble with my vision, I could not clearly read the small print at the bottom of the tv screen, and worse still as I was driving I started to feel that the  oncoming traffic was in my lane. I should have gone back and the lenses would have been changed, but unwisely decided to persevere.  I decided last week I must go and get my sight checked again, and after the test the Optometrist showed me what my current lenses gave me and then what I need to have, the difference in my perspective was dramatically different. I cannot wait to pick up my new glasses on Friday. In this case I was aware of the need of change, so many Believers and churches  are not aware of the need for change, and consequently resist, and fight change. What is your perspective about yourself and your walk with God, and where your local church at,    at this time.

None of us know either personally, or churchwise, or politically both Nationally and Internationally what 2018 holds. We must be prepared for and be open to change, not change just for change sake, but change, that makes us the person God wants us to be, and for every local church, to assess itself afresh and seek to build “according to the pattern of the Word of God” knowing that by doing this we will see the glory of God.

I conclude today with this statement i saw recently.

YOUR LIFE DOES NOT GET BETTER BY CHANCE, IT GETS BETTER BY CHANGE

 

I AM A SINNER SAVED BY GRACE ALONE

Almost everyone knows the great hymn AMAZING GRACE, but  perhaps not everyone knows it was written by the Rev. John Newton (1725-1802) a British Anglican Minister, formerly a blaspheming sailor and slave trader who had a wonderful conversion to Christ.

I saw a statement on FB last week written by him and was so blest by it I decided to reposted it.

I AM A GREAT SINNER AND CHRIST IS A GREAT SAVIOUR

Very quickly I received a comment “We are no longer sinners, our sin consciousness has been done away with.”. I simply responded and said I wish “I could say I was sinless”.

The lady had read an article I think by a “cheap grace” preacher and she had embraced his unbalanced teaching. I agree we must not have such  a sin consciousness that so overwhelms us, that we think we are “a worm” and worthless.  BUT the Psalmist reminds us that if “I regard (have) iniquity in my  heart the Lord will not hear Psalm 68:18 NKJV  and the Apostle John tells us “If we say we have no sin we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us 1 John 1:8 NKJV     BUT

“If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just (true to His Name, His Nature and His promises) to forgive us and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness 1 John 1:9 NKJV & AMP.

I than God again today that 66 years ago i was born again and the  burden of sin rolled away, and I received the Gift of Eternal Life, but sad to say I have failed the Lord so many times, and daily come to  Cross (The Brazen Altar) and confess my sin to the Lamb of God who took away the sins of the world, and His precious blood washes my heart totally clean. The Word of God clearly indicates that through the work of the Cross and the Resurrection I can live above sin.

NOT THAT I CANNOT SIN BUT NEED NOT SIN.

This is the goal of my heart to live above sin, I have not come to that place yet, so spend considerable time every day preparing my heart so that my time of prayer is effective and fruitful.

I know the depravity of my heart (Jeremiah 17:9)  and humbly echo John Newton”s words. I AM A GREAT SINNER AND CHRIST IS A GREAT SAVIOUR     HALLELUJAH.

We often ask ourselves “where would be today BUT for the grace of God”  It was the Grace of God that brought us into the Kingdom of God, it is the Grace of God that keeps us in the Kingdom of God, and it is His Grace that will take us into that eternal Kingdom.

There is nothing new in this blog today, just a reminder, that with Him I can do nothing, but with Him, I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me Philippians 4:13 NKJV

THE JOY OF THE LORD

I wonder if any of my readers remember the  old children’s chorus

It’s bubbling, it’s bubbling, it’s bubbling in my soul.

There’s singing and laughing, since Jesus made me whole.

Folks can’s understand it, how can I keep it quiet?

It’s bubbling, bubbling, bubbling, bubbling, bubbling, day and night.

I have been aware for a few days of  a quiet sweet bubbling of joy in my spirit. There were no external reasons why this should be,  I am sure God’s plan is that  Believers  should be aware in some way all the time, of the deep abiding joy of the Lord, not that it is always manifesting itself, but just that quiet mmm….  in our spirit.

So I began to look at the Scriptures to see afresh what the Word said about the God’s joy in the heart of the Believer.

We are all aware of Nehemiah”s profound statement “The JOY of the Lord is our strength” Nehemiah 8:10 NKJV.  That in the midst of the turmoil of life, which SUREsure does not produce happiness, we are strengthened by the awareness of this joy from above.

King David often speaks of joy, and I love his statement In your presence is fullness of JOY; at your right hand are pleasures for evermore” Psalm 16:11 NKJV. When we spend time in God’s presence,  and clear the decks of any unconfessed sins, have reaffirmed His lordship over our lives and spent time in Thanksgiving and Praise and Worship, the Joy of the Lord will bubble up and we will want to do what is recorded in the Word many times,  WE WILL WANT TO SHOUT FOR JOY. Not like we do when our sporting team is winning, but for the sheer pleasure of God’s joy bubbling in our heart.

Psalm 51 is David’s prayer of confession as he repented of his sins relating to Bathsheba, David had lost the joy because of his disobedience, and asks God to “Restore to me the joy of my Salvation” Psalm 51:12 NKJV and joy always flows after confession and reconciliation to the Lord.  Hallelujah.

The Bible tells us that, that because God’s joy is abiding in us, we can proactively seek to let the joy of the Lord flow in and out of us, Isaiah tells us “Therefore with JOY you will draw water from the wells of Salvation Isaiah 12:3 NKJVB

In the New Testament we are reminded that “The Kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but RIGHTEOUSNESS, PEACE and JOY  in the Holy Spirit” Romans 14:17 NKJV. The Christian life is not about natural pleasures, but walking in the imputed righteousness of God,  and experiencing the awesome peace of God filling our lives, which  again  releases the joy of the Lord in us.

The Apostle Peter expresses it this way, that as a result of being born again and the Lord Jesus Christ coming into our life  “Of whom having not seen you love, though now you do not see Him, yet believing you rejoice with JOY inexpressible and full of glory”. 1 peter 1:8 NKJV Just knowing we have been reconciled to God, and have total access into His presence, and being recipients of a glorious inheritance through the death and resurrection of Jesus there comes such joy, words cannot express or describe this joy, as I mentioned recently as the Scotchman said, IT IS BETTER FELT THAN TELT.

The Apostle Paul tells that joy is a part of the ninefold FRUIT OF THE SPIRIT.  “But the fruit of the Spirit is Love, JOY, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self control” Galatians 5:22-23 NKJV. As it is a fruit it is meant to grow (in balance) with all the other segments of the fruit of the Spirit, so we need to daily feed it, and LET IT FLOW IN OUR LIVES.

I THANK GOD TODAY AFRESH FOR HIS ABIDING JOY DO YOU?

 

 

EXPECTING GOOD THINGS IN 2018

A chorus we used to sing, when we were in Newcastle in the early 1980’s has been running through my mind. It was written by our Worship Pastor Philip Lowe.

IT’S A NEW DAY, IT’S A NEW DAY, IT’S A NEW DAY OF THE LORD, IT IS A DAY OF WALKING ARM IN ARM WITH JESUS CHRIST OUR LORD.

Today is January 1 2018, a new day, a new week, a new month, a new year,  and yet as the Psalmist reminded us, every day is new, “This is the day the Lord has made we will rejoice and be glad in it.  Psalm 118:24 NKJV.

I  have an excitement in my spirit today, I can’t specifically say why, but it may have to do with the short term goals I have set this year, things I am believing for by March 31, June 30 & September 30. As I work with the Lord I am  believing they will come to pass.

I also think that even as we are looking at all that is happening both Nationally, and Internationally and it is not a pretty picture, as the world overall is turning their back of God and trampling down His commandments, I feel God has some surprises for His people this year, that despite all the negativity that is around us, God is going to surprise us with much blessing. I can’t be specific, it is as the Scotchman said, IT IS BETTER FELT THAN TELT.

I am not a Prophet or a son of a Prophet, and maybe you will have to stone me at the end of the year, but let’s believe  together, for His blessing, His increase and His favour to be upon  us this year, Amen What do you think ???