Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Rely on God, Continued Deliverance, Prayers of Many

Please take 20-30 seconds to read this:

2 Corinthians 1:8We do not want you to be uninformed, brothers, about the hardships we suffered in the province of Asia. We were under great pressure, far beyond our ability to endure, so that we despaired even of life. 9Indeed, in our hearts we felt the sentence of death. But this happened that we might not rely on ourselves but on God, who raises the dead. 10He has delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us. On him we have set our hope that he will continue to deliver us, 11as you help us by your prayers. Then many will give thanks on oura behalf for the gracious favor granted us in answer to the prayers of many.

How very rich this little section of scripture is with words of life for those who believe. What are we told here? We come under great pressure, pressure far beyond our ability to endure, but WHY? So that our reliance will not be on ourselves but on our God who has the power even to raise the dead.

What else do we see? On him we have set our hope that he will continue to deliver us....continued deliverance huh? Sounds pretty good. Sounds like getting delivered from one thing after another after another after another. Sounds kind of like this:

4I sought the Lord, and he answered me;
he delivered me from all my fears.

and this

6This poor man called, and the Lord heard him;
he saved him out of all his troubles.

from Psalm 34. See that word up there that our Lord uses ALL the time? Its the word all, and its a really big word. Why? Well, what does "all" mean?

all (ôl)
the whole extent or quantity of

The word "all" leaves nothing out does it? If I have 10 cookies and I tell you I am going to give you "all" of them, how many would you expect to receive? 10 right? That's what "all" means.
If I tell you that hell on earth is coming and there will be 10 trials and tribulations involved (just pulling a number out of thin air here), and I was going to make sure you were kept from "all" of them then how many of the trials and tribulations would you expect to go through?

We know that in this life we have tribulation:

“In the world ye shall have tribulation” (John 16:33),

but what are we told about the trouble and tribulation we have? We shall be delivered out of ALL of it. This should encourage us right? I can tell you that I have lived many years on this earth and when I think back I cannot think of one single example of this failing in my life. The Lord has a 100% track record of delivering me. Yes, I've had many troubles, who hasn't? But I have been delivered from them all. That is my testimony today, that our God is good, his word can be trusted and my soul boasts in the Lord today because of it. His praise is on my lips and on these pages because he has done in my life exactly what he said he would do.

I am a nobody, he is everything. If we will do what he tells us to do, like "live by faith not by sight" then we can expect rewards that come from obedience. Obedience is love in our Father's eyes. I have seen in my own life that we do not have to be perfect to warrant our Lord's blessings and favor, but we do have to strive for perfection. People use the excuse that we are humans and therefore not perfect (and never can be perfect) as an excuse to do whatever they want. That's a mistake. Our God is looking always at our heart. What is in our hearts?

Ro 8:27 -
And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints in accordance with God's will.

The spirit is willing but the flesh is weak, we know it, our God knows it, but thats not an excuse to do evil. If we set out hearts and minds to do what pleases our God, it has been my experience that he rewards our effort.

shifting gears a little....

Saturday, September 19 (Sabbath day), Feast of Trumpets 2009

I remember this time last year like it was yesterday. I said it then and I'm saying it again, I have no word from the Lord regarding escape, rapture or anything else for this years feast of trumpets. When I say I have no word from the Lord that means him speaking to my heart, mind etc about it. What I do have is alot of evidence that points to a feast of trumpets escape/rapture of the true believers aka the church.

I'm not going to outline all the reasons why a feast of trumpets, rosh hashanah escape from all makes sense according to what we have been told in the bible. Other brothers have done a great job making that case already, you can find their work all over the internet. What I will say is that this year, rosh hashanah falls on a sabbath day, that makes it a little more interesting. I also see the days of Noah and Lot all around us today, another marker of the days when we should expect to see our Lord. I also see that the world (as usual) is going in the opposite direction of the Spirit of God. When the Spirit was warning the world that these days were coming, they were preaching peace and quietness, don't worry! Now the world is preaching worry, fret and fear, look at all the terrible things Satan is doing and I hear the Spirit speaking peace, quietness and don't worry, almost funny if it wasn't so tragic.

We should be ready each and every day to meet our Lord. We have no idea how many days we each get here. We also do not know when the Luke 21:36 escape from all is going to happen. We also know that it is only the fall feasts that are still waiting to be fulfilled and here we are walking into fall. It would not surprise me at all to see the escape from all rapture of the church in the coming days. On the other hand, we could be waiting for that event for years. The only wise approach to this situation is daily readiness, a daily walk of obedience, prayer and faith. Who can make a case against doing such things?

I am seeing changes in myself that are without a doubt the work of the Lord. These changes are good welcome changes to align me with the center of the narrow road that leads to life. This blog is not about me though, its about you, what do these changes in me have to do with you? If you and I are both "in Christ" then perhaps you should be seeing some changes as well, or maybe you will be seeing them. I believe we are being called into the ark, not physically (yet) but the body always lags the spirit. Spirit, the unseen is always first, the seen is second. That is why we are told to live by faith not by sight. Living by faith means living according to what we know of the unseen world. Seems kind of ridiculous to the unbeliever, the skeptic and the mocker but shouldn't we expect that?

1 Corinthians 1:23 but we preach Christ crucified: a stumbling block to Jews and foolishness to Gentiles,

The very core of our faith is foolishness to the Gentiles.

In closing today, let me say that I have no idea, not even the slightest inkling of what the Lord has in store for this world in the days ahead. We know whats coming because we have the bible but as far as prophetic word or impression or whatever else you might want to call it I am a blank right now. The Lord has my heart and mind focused 100% on readiness for the day, not the day itself. If we are ready for the day of the escape when it comes, then that day will take care of itself, no need for predictive prognosticating, prophetic words, fortune telling or anything else.

Let us be ready today. We are dearly loved children, grace and peace