Prayer Challenge

I want to ask you to say this prayer out loud, if possible.

“I belong to God. I am a holy vessel, because I have the Holy Spirit of the Living God. The Lord of Heaven and earth has said over me; “I declare you holy!”. I commit to start believing what He says. I AM HOLY! Remind me daily, Spirit of the Living God, to treat myself as holy, open my eyes to every scheme of The Enemy to treat me as if I'm not. You God, are Holy. Your word is truth. This day Father, I chose to believe you! I ask this in the mighty name of your son Jesus Christ, who died on a cross for me so that I could be a coheir to the kingdom of God. Amen”

Sunday, September 17, 2017

I Will Not Fear - Psalm 118:6

The Lord is On the Side of David, Jesus, and Me
The Lord was on the side of David, hence all his prosperity and victories, the wonderful things done by him, his exaltation to the throne, and the establishment of it.
The Lord was on the side of Christ, he was near by him, at his right hand, to guide, direct, and assist him as man
The Lord is on the side of his people and he will:
  • fight their battles for them
  • support them under all their afflictions
  • supply all their wants
  • deliver them from all evil
  • carry on the work of grace in their souls
  • bring them to glory
David Did Not Fear
He was not afraid of ten thousands of men, no, not of a whole army that encamped against him, God being for him, the strength of his life, and his salvation.
Jesus Did Not Fear
He was not afraid of Herod when he was told he would kill him; nor of the high priests, Scribes and Pharisees, though he knew he should fall into their hands, and they would deliver him to the Gentiles, to be scourged and crucified; nor of Judas and his band of men, who came to take him; nor of Pilate his judge, who had no power against him but what was given him.
Believers Should Not Fear
 The utmost any man can do is to kill the body; he cannot destroy the soul, or hinder the happiness of it.
Adapted from Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible 

Believing is Essential - Mark 9:23

Jesus Has Power Over Satan
Jesus demonstrated his power over Satan and the spirits that answered to Satan repeatedly. He gave the disciples the power to also cast out spirits and heal people. The disciples tried to help a suffering boy, but they couldn't cast out the demon. Why?
Jesus felt it was because of unbelief on the part of the father AND the disciples. Perhaps the disciples had quit relying on God as much as they should have and had begun to rely on themselves. 

According to Matthew Henry's Concise Bible Commentary for Mark 9:14-29:

  • The father of the suffering youth reflected on the want of power in the disciples; but Christ will have him reckon the disappointment to the want of faith. 
  • Very much is promised to our believing. If you can believe, it is possible that your hard heart may be softened, your spiritual diseases maybe cured; and, weak as you are, You may be able to hold out to the end. 
  • Those that complain of unbelief, must look up to Christ for grace to help them against it, and his grace will be sufficient for them. 
  • Whom Christ cures, he cures effectually. 
  • Satan is unwilling to be driven from those that have been long his slaves, and, when he cannot deceive or destroy the sinner, he will cause him all the terror that he can.
  • The disciples must not think to do their work always with the same ease; some services call for more than ordinary pains.

Sunday, September 10, 2017

How to Live Life - Psalm 119:9-10

Psalm 119 is an amazing psalm to study. 
Study will reveal that this psalm contains instructions on how to live life every day. This life outline includes the following four instructions:
  • Study God's commands
  • Live according to the word of God, the Bible
  • Seek God with all your heart
  • Ask God to help you stay focused on his commands
Think About the Word of God Like This
Each verse is like a seed of wisdom that contains his instructions on how to live according to his will. When you bury these seeds in your heart, each word will sprout and give you understanding and insight into God's commands. This is the insight that will keep you from leaving his path for you. The more seeds you bury in your heart, the more insight and understanding you will have about the Lord's commands.  Seek him with all your heart. The rewards will be great. This isn't my promise, it is God's promise. 

No Spiritual Roots - Luke 8:13

For a long time, I was like the seed on the rock.
I love Jesus. I feel great joy in talking about him and studying the bible. However, my faith was an emotional response to belonging to Jesus and interacting at church. I wasn't a disciple. I was a church member.

I have always known that I belong to Jesus.
However, somewhere in my bible reading I missed that I am not a belonging, but a new creation whose life is changed by knowing Jesus as lord and savior. My life didn't change. My life didn't change because I wasn't allowing Jesus into all areas of my life. I was only allowing Jesus into one area of my life that was labelled, church.

I am a social person and I enjoy being a member of a church. 
Volunteering regularly, participating in Sunday school, and reading my bible was part of my church life. I wasn't doing any of this because I wanted to serve Jesus. I was doing this because that is what church people do. See what I am getting at? I was receiving the word with joy, but I wasn't growing any spiritual roots.

Here was my temptation, I was a housewife who KNEW she had a problem with alcohol and wanted to quit drinking.

In fact, I was leaving church buoyed up by joyfulness and telling myself I wasn't going to drink anymore alcohol. Happiness filled me from worshipping Jesus from 10:00 to noon. However within a couple of hours after I arrived at home, I found myself reaching for a drink.

I couldn't understand why the feeling I felt at church, Sunday school and bible study wasn't lasting after I reached home. 

I had no idea that the problem was that I didn't have spiritual roots. My faith wasn't rooted in Jesus. My faith was an emotional faith that was rooted in being a church member, rather than a disciple of Jesus Christ.

Today, I no longer have an emotional faith that has no spiritual roots.
During my recovery from alcohol,  I learned how to let go of living my life my way and let God take control of my life. Jesus is with me all day long, everywhere I go. He is driving the car  and I am riding in the backseat.

Church isn't a building and activities.
Church is being a member of the body of Christ. Now joy fills my heart and floods me from the inside out because I am a disciple of Jesus who is willing to share what Jesus has done for me where ever he leads me.

Monday, September 4, 2017

Satan the Deceiver

The Dragon, or Satan  
Satan is a leader who prefers to use his own wisdom in achieving his goals and believes he needs no one. His rebellion against his creator shows the full extent of his self-will.

Satan is willing to say or do anything in order to have his way. 
He befriends people and uses power, money, and material things to achieve his goals. He appears to be a wise counselor who wants only the best for his friends, but in reality he is only interested in creating death, destruction, and famine. 

We are living in a spiritual battleground. 
For everything in the world – the cravings of sinful man, the lust of his eyes, and the boasting of what he has and does – comes not from the Father but from the world. Let us not be deceived. Satan is powerful as the “god of this age” BUT disciples of Jesus Christ need not cower before him in fear, BECAUSE “He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world." (1 John 4:4)

from the short bible lesson, "Superhero Discipleship" by Sallee Bonham

Monday, August 21, 2017

Jesus, Sun of Righteousness - Matthew 27:45

Today, Bill and I stood in darkness for about two minutes.
All was still. No vehicles were heard. Tree frogs and insects could be heard as the dusk to dawn light came on. As we stood in total darkness at 1:15 P.M., we wondered if this is what it was like the day Jesus was crucified.

Matthew wrote that the land was in darkness from noon until three.
It wasn't an eclipse that day because Jesus was crucified during the full moon. However, other writers than the biblical ones also recorded that a supernatural darkness occurred on the day Jesus was crucified.
The only cause of this was the interposing power of God - furnishing testimony to the dignity of the sufferer, and causing the elements to sympathize with the pains of his dying Son. 
It was also especially proper to furnish this testimony when the "Sun of righteousness"was withdrawing his beams for a time, and the Redeemer of men was expiring.
A thick darkness, shutting out the light of day, and clothing every object with the gloom of midnight, was the appropriate drapery with which the world should be clad when the Son of God expired. 
This darkness was noticed by one at least of the pagan writers. Phlegon, a Roman astronomer, speaking of the 14th year of the reign of Tiberius, which is supposed to be that in which our Saviour died, says "that the greatest eclipse of the sun that was ever known happened then, for the day was so turned into night that the stars appeared. 
Barnes' Notes on the Bible

Rescued and Redeemed - Psalm 105:28

Psalm 105 was speaking of the plague that God sent so the Egyptian pharaoh would release the Israelites from bondage. 

Matthew Henry wrote this about Psalm 105:24-45:

As the believer commonly thrives best in his soul when under the cross; so the church also flourishes most in true holiness, and increases in number, while under persecution. 
  • Yet instruments shall be raised up for their deliverance, and plagues may be expected by persecutors. 
  • And see the special care God took of his people in the wilderness. 
All the benefits bestowed on Israel as a nation, were shadows of spiritual blessings with which we are blessed in Christ Jesus. 
  • Having redeemed us with his blood, restored our souls to holiness, and set us at liberty from Satan's bondage, he guides and guards us all the way. 
  • He satisfies our souls with the bread of heaven, and the water of life from the Rock of salvation, and will bring us safely to heaven. 
  • He redeems his servants from all iniquity, and purifies them unto himself, to be a peculiar people, zealous of good works.
Adapted from Matthew Henry's Concise Bible Commentary