Archive for the ‘Glory of the Lord’ Category

The Question of the Ages (Exodus 3)

June 5, 2019

 14 God said to Moses, “I am who I am.”[a] And he said, “Say this to the people of Israel: ‘I am has sent me to you.’”  Exodus 3:14

Every generation has its own set of questions that come as a result of constantly shifting society’s.  For example, in the 1960’s, America’s youth had to decide whether war is ever justified or not.  In America today, this generation is faced with questions of marriage and sexual orientation.

Despite all these unique questions there is a question that every generation faces. It is the question of the ages.  What is the question?  I believe the question is: is there a God and if there is a God, who is this God?

This same question was in play in Moses day.  You remember Moses? He was the little child that God had set aside to be His spokesman to the nation of Israel.

But at this point (Beginning of Exodus 3), Moses does not seem like the chosen one here in the desert, but he was.  Hebrews 11:24 says Moses chose to bear the reproach of his people.

It is 40 years later now.  Moses is waiting for a revelation from the true God. The God of his father and the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.   Here Moses received the revelation of the One True God:

  • God reveals Himself as the transcendent and eternal God (Flame in the bush).
  • God reveals Himself as one who has an eternal plan (including Moses).

As Moses stands there, we discover two things about Moses:

  1. He is humble before God.  He says, “God, who am I, to represent You?”
  2. He is hungry for God.  God, who will I tell them that you are?

Oh, here is now the answer for the ages:  The true and living God is “The I AM.”  God had no other God to compare Himself too.  All other God’s were dead God’s.  God had no one (human) to compare Himself too.  He is I AM.

But there is more.  He is “The Lord.”  He is the powerful King, who reign’s and He is God alone.

Have you discovered this in your life?  Thomas (one of the twelve disciples) did after Jesus resurrection.  When He saw the resurrected Lord, Thomas said, “My Lord and my God.”

Oh, that many people where you live and I live would come to know the true answer for the question of the ages.  Oh, that the people of Malawi would come to know Him as Lord and Savior!!!  But how can they know unless you and I share with them the answer?  So, lets go and tell the world that Jesus is Lord!!!

Advertisements

Who did you tell? (Psalm 145)

February 26, 2018

One generation shall commend your works to another,
    and shall declare your mighty acts. Psalm 145:4

The news was to be a secret. No one except the people involved were to know what was about to be revealed to the public.  However, the news leaked and the important moment of revealing was diminished because someone told before hand.

The above illustration is something that all of us have experienced in relationships and in the work place.  Someone said, “Somethings are to be kept silent.”  I would agree wholeheartedly.

However, there are some things that are not to be kept secret.  You ask, “give me an example?”  My answer, The revelation of God!  God intends for His people to declare who He is and what He does to the entire world.  This is the Psalmist direction in Psalm 145.

In this Psalm we are lead on a glorious mission of discovery.  R.C. Sproul comments: “This is a spiritual fireworks display,” Cited from The Reformation Study Bible.”

The author vows to praise the Lord each and every day, Vs: 2.  We read of the impossibility of every running out of things to praise Him for, Vs: 3.  God’s desire is for us to reach the next generation with the truth of who God is.

We ask, how do we accomplish this task?  Vs: 5-7

  • We have to daily meditate and marinate on God’s Word.
  • We have to daily share as a megaphone what we are discovering.

The Psalmist gives us an example of how this is to happen in Vs: 8-21.  I encourage you to take time and read slowly through verses eight through twenty-one.  I have placed the verses in two categories and I have given each verse to one or the other.

  1.  We see the character of God in Vs: 8-9, 13, 17.
  2. We see the mighty deeds of God in Vs: 9-12, 14-16, 18-20.

Now that you have read these verses, spend your day in mediation and marination concerning who He is and what He does.  Also spend your day looking for people to share with what you are discovering and experiencing.

Here is an awesome song to sing as you go along the day:

 

How Great Is Our God
The splendor of the King, clothed in majesty
Let all the earth rejoice
All the earth rejoice
He wraps himself in Light, and darkness tries to hide
And trembles at His voice
Trembles at His voice
How great is our God, sing with me
How great is our God, and all will see
How great, how great is our God
Age to age He stands
And time is in His hands
Beginning and the end
Beginning and the end
The Godhead Three in One
Father Spirit Son
The Lion and the Lamb
The Lion and the Lamb
Name above all names
Worthy of our praise
My heart will sing
How great is our God
How great is our God, sing with me
How great is our God, and all will see
How great, how great is our God

 

The Stump is still intact (Isaiah 11-12, James 5)

May 13, 2014

“There shall come forth a shoot from the stump of Jesse, and a branch from his roots shall bear fruit.” Isaiah 11:1

Israel and Judah were headed for trouble.  Trouble unlike they had ever seen before.  Isaiah has been clear that the trouble came as a result of her rebellion against God.  The cities and most of its cities would be either laid waste or carried off into captivity.

The tree of Judah was being cut down.  The fact was, “There seemed to be no hope.”  But contrary to reason, there was hope.  Where was the hope?  The stump was still intact.

Question:  “What does this mean?”  The Davidic dynasty had been chopped down except for the stump.  This stump is referring to the coming of Jesus (Matthew 1:1).

Think it through:

1.  We see Isaiah’s prediction of the Lord’s coming, 11:1-10

In the Lord’s first coming, Vs: 1-2 we see the work of our Glorious Lord in our salvation.

In the Lord’s second-coming, Vs: 3-10 we see the work in His great rewards when He comes.  He will reward both the righteous and the unrighteous at His coming.

2.  We see Isaiah’s praise for the Lord’s coming, 11:11-12:6

Israel had no hope in herself.  But praise be to God for hope was on the way.  Isaiah describes this hope as follows, “And there will be a highway from Assyria.”  This gives a picture of how the Lord makes a clear path for man to be able to enter into heaven (John 14:6).  Later in Isaiah he is even more descriptive, “And a highway shall be there, and it shall be called the way of holiness,” 35:8.

This God who promised to make a way, did make a way through Jesus.

Our response:

“Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and will not be afraid; for the Lord God is my strength and my song, and he has become my salvation.”  

You and I can stand on the stump (That stump is Jesus, Matt. 7:24-27).  You and I can grow into a strong and mighty tree for God (He is our strength, Phil. 4:13).  You and I can see branches shoot out from the stump (“make known His deeds among the people, proclaim that his name is exalted,” 12:4).  You and I can rest under the shade of His presence (“For great in your midst is the Holy One of Israel,” 12:6).  

Grace For A Evil Man (I Kings 21; I Thessalonians 4)

October 18, 2013

“Have you seen how Ahab has humbled himself before me?  Because he has humbled himself before me, I will not bring the disaster in his days; but in his sons days I will bring the disaster upon his house,” I Kings 21:29

Is it really realistic to ask God to forgive an evil man?  I possessed a similar question to my family during devotions last week.  Here was the question, “What would you do to a person who would do you the way Ahab did the people of God?”  There were a variety of responses, however the best was a response of a question, “Are you asking how I would respond or how God would have me respond?”

This morning we find ourselves engaged an account of wicked people.  Their sins are clearly outlined by God.  They were an evil dynamic duo.  Here were the roles these two people played:

Jezebel (wife) was the instigator of most of their evil deeds

Ahab (Husband) was the implementor of these evil deeds

Together they incited more evil than any other leaders in the history of the world.  But when Ahab humbled himself before God.  God gave this evil man grace!!!

Think it through:

1.  Is it humanly possible to give grace to evil people?

2.  What has to happen before grace is possible?

The answers we need:

The only way we can give grace is if we are possessors of God’s grace in our lives (Eph. 2:3-4).

Jesus had to go to the cross so that grace could be possible (I Peter 3:18).

Taking it out for a spin:

Who in your life and in my life needs grace?  Have we taken the place of God in offering grace to some and not offering grace to others?  My challenge for you is to grasp a deeper understanding of grace and then give grace as you have been given grace.  Even evil Ahab came to understand a measure of grace!!!

Writing A Song (II Samuel 22, Galatians 2)

September 26, 2013

“And David spoke to the Lord the words of this song on the day when the Lord delivered him from the hand of all his enemies, and from the hand of Saul,”  II Samuel 22:1

Can you imagine the stress that would be on you if you were asked to write a song (If you were not a song writer)?  This morning I found myself amazed at the song composed by David.  The Bible says, “David spoke to the Lord the words of this song…”

In this moment I was reminded of a theological fact: “All of scripture is ordained by God.”  Simply stated, “It was God who wrote the song and all David had to do was to write it down and sing it.”

Here is a summary of what David sang:

David’s song lifted up the praises of the God who saved him from his enemies, Vs: 4-16.

There were two enemies that led the pack.  The enemy of death and the enemy of distress.  God saved David from both of these enemies.

David’s song lifted up the praises of the God who brought him to a place of rest, Vs: 17-31.

David’s song lifted up the praises of the God who equipped him for battle, Vs: 32-49

David found strength and success in battle because of one thing:  “The presence of His God.”

Think it through:

1.  Has God saved you from your enemies?  Sing His praises!!!

2.  Has God brought you to a place of rest?  Sing His praises!!!

3.  Has God equipped you for battle?  Sing His praises!!!

Take it out for a spin:

Spend some time discovering what it means to be saved from your enemies.  Check out Galatians 2:20 where you will see the Christ who represented you before the Father, who redeemed you before the Father, and in whom reigns in your life.

He Is Awesome (Numbers 24; Psalm 66-67)

May 15, 2013

“But truly God has listened.  He has attended to the voice of my prayer.” Psalm 66:19

Brothers and sisters, there are some awesome things to see and experience in this world.  For example, “The beauty of God’s creation in the spring time in my home state of Kentucky.”  This past week I saw the springing to life of certain types of flowers.  A few weeks ago in North Carolina I was able to see the beautiful azalea bushes.  Their colors were breathtaking.  A few years ago I stood in the foothills of Santa Fe New Mexico and was overwhelmed by the beauty of the mountains.

However in comparison to God himself, they pale in comparison.  Consider Psalm 66 where the Psalmist writes, “Say to God, how awesome are your deeds!  So great is your power that your enemies come cringing to you,” Vs: 3.  

The Psalmist invites us to both examine his work and express our worship for his work.  Question, “Have you spent any time praising him for his work?”  So often we are so tied to the moment of petition that we fail to praise.  I was reminded of this as I read the last verse of this Psalm, “Blessed be God, because he has not rejected my prayer or removed his steadfast love from me!”

Brothers and sisters, the more we see Jesus the more awesome he becomes.  But also the more fearless we become because we dwell under the shadow of our awesome god.

So here is our takeaway: 1.  Consider who He is (Read through Psalm 66 for a good grasp). 2.  Commit all of your fears to Him.  3.  Commit time in total praise.

 

The Light on Display (Exodus 30, John 9)

March 19, 2013

“That it may bring the people of Israel to remembrance before the Lord, so as to make atonement for your lives,” Exodus 30:16

It was not that this man sinned, or his parents, but that the works of God might be displayed in him,” John 9:3

One of my favorite things to do while Sherry is shopping at Sams is to visit each food display.  I find it very interesting to sample the different types of food that are on sale for whatever week.  Recently I was able to sample strawberries.  The goal of these displays is for you to purchase the item on display.  After sampling the strawberries, I found myself placing a package in Sherry’s cart when she came by.  In my case, the display worked.

Consider our More for Christ readings:  In Exodus 30 we find God’s continued instruction for how to conduct oneself in the Tabernacle.  In each of these specific guidelines we find the light of God’s glory on display.  Each time the people would come, they would be reminded of God’s glory which was on display.

In John 9 we find the Light on display.  Jesus encounters a blind man.  This man has been blind since birth (A picture of our spiritual state).  As He sits outside the Temple, the disciples wonder the why of his state.  In this moment Jesus reminds us of God’s purpose (The light will be on display).

Here we see several things: 1.  The light is at work, Vs: 3-7  2.  The light is at war, Vs: 8-34  3.  The light wins the day, Vs: 35-41

Finally we understand John 8:12 “I am the light of the world.  He who follows me will not walk in darkness but will have the light of life.” 

Jesus has come to this world to work the Works of God.  He does this by bringing light to what was dark.  The world does not understand the light (Vs: 2-7) and religion opposes the light (Vs: 9-34).  However the light wins the day (Vs: 35-41) as Jesus is calling men to come from the darkness into the light!!!

Question:  “Does your life and my life reflect the light of Christ?”  The fact is, “God intends for our every action to be on display.”  Allow me to encourage you to shine His light before a dark and sinful world so that they may see the Light of His glory!!!  When we display the light we fulfill our intended purpose.

Drawing The Line

July 13, 2012

“Yet for us there is one God, the Father, from whom are all things for whom we exist, and one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom are all things and through whom we exist,” I Cor. 8:6

Question, “Do you ever struggle between what is right and what is not right?”  This past week I completed the book, “Blood Feud.”  Recently I bogged about this book.  As I read through the book I was continually amazed at how people confuse right and wrong.  Both the Hatfield’s and the McCoy’s believed they were right in how they were living.

This mornings More For Christ readings centers on I Corinthians 8.  Paul is addressing the issue of what causes our brothers and sisters to stumble.  Here in the text we discover the issue arrises over the subject of idol worship.  In the Corinthian culture the city worshipped many idols and as a part of their worship they would have love feast where they would offer their food to idols and then they would eat the food that had been offered to an idol.  There were those who had come to Christ who understood and they would reject this feast.  But others did not understand so they would eat.  Still there were others who could eat the food and not ascribe lordship to the idols.

Paul’s concern was in the fact of both legalism and license to live anyway they wanted.  So how does Paul give instruction?

1.  Live a lifestyle of love for God

He is the only true and living God.  All of our affection and loyalty is for Christ alone.  Our very existence comes from Him and the very reason for our existence is to give glory to God.

2.  Live a lifestyle of love for others

God’s love alive in us alters the way we live and the way we treat others.  We do not live a life of arrogance (8:1-2) because God has opened our eyes to the truth.  We live a life of love in which we put others before ourselves (8:13).

As I thought about these facts, I realize I have often drawn a line in my life that was out of my lack of love, my arrogance, and often a combination of the two.  This morning I seek to follow Paul’s instruction.

Imagine how history would have recorded differently the story of the Hatfield’s and McCoy’s if they had drawn the line as Paul writes.  Still yet God gives grace.  History records that just 3 months before the leader of the Hatfield’s dies, he responds to the call of the gospel.

In this I offer you great encouragement in that if you have blown it in the past, God still offers grace for the past.  And he also offers grace for the present.

Something Is Different

January 11, 2012

“And when the demon-oppressed man who was mute was brought to him.  And when the demon had been cast out, the mute man spoke.  The crowds marveled, saying, “Never was anything like this seen in Israel.”  Matthew 9:33

It seems strange to me, but there are times when people will come up to me and they will ask a silly question.  This question usually always comes when I am in some type of clothing store.  Here is the question, “Do you work here?”  I often wonder, “Is it because I look like I want to help or is it some other reason?”

This morning I truly believe the crowds who followed Jesus, Matthew 9:14-34, saw and heard something different from anything they had ever heard before.  I encourage you to open your bible and follow me through each scene in this text.

First stop, the disciples of John saw a difference (9:14-17).  These disciples could not understand why Jesus and his disciples did not fast as they did.  Here was what was different, “Jesus was in their midst.  They did not need to fast.  This was a new day.”  Second stop, a woman and little girl are healed (9:18-26).  What was different here?  Both disease and death were no match for Jesus.  Third stop, two bind men are healed (9:27-31).  What is the difference here?  Darkness is no match for Jesus.  Last stop, a mute man is healed (9:32-34).  What is the difference? No affliction is beyond the ability of Christ to heal.

Brothers and sisters, it is clear, there was and is something different about Jesus.  But is there anything different about you and I?  Consider the following; “We can, because of Christ, live the Christ life.  We can overcome all of our flaws because we are new creations in Christ.”

Lets examine a few examples:  “Our spiritual diseases can be removed.”  Anger can be conquered as we submit to Christ.  Insecurity can be conquered as we rest in the sufficiency of Christ.  “The spiritual dark spots can be removed.”  We must place all of our lives before His light.  Darkness cannot co-exist where light resides.   Finally, “Spiritual ignorance can be replaced.”  As we cry out to God he opens our minds and hearts to his truth.

This morning I cried out to God, “Make me different so that I can be a trophy of your grace.  This way, the word we see you.  When the world sees you, I know they will see something different.”

Brothers and sisters take heart.  Our God wants to make you different.  All it takes on your part is simply a surrender of your life totally into His hands.

For further Study, read I Corinthians 12.  Also consider reading “Jesus plus nothing equals everything,” by Tullian Tchividjian.  

What’s Happened To You?

September 21, 2011

This past Sunday morning a young lady walked up to a couple she knew very well in her church.  They talked for a few moments and then suddenly the young lady asked this couple if they wanted to buy her baby.  This couple was in shock.  They did not know how to respond, so they went to the altar to pray.  After the service this couple called the police and the police arrested this young lady.

I must admit, as I read this article from Foxnews.com, that I found myself asking, “What was wrong with this lady?”  As I continued to read the article I discovered this young lady had been engaging in drug use.  The addiction had so overtaken her life that she was even willing to sell her baby to feed the addiction that possessed her.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, I am so thankful that in Christ we have victory over sin.  Here is how Peter describes this very fact, “Since therefore Christ suffered in the flesh, arm yourselves with the same way of thinking, for whoever has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin,” I Peter 4:1.  As followers of Christ the power of sin can no longer control our lives.

However, some who read this will undoubtedly respond, “If this is the case, then why do Christians fall prey to addictions?”  Here is Peter’s answer, “We are to no longer live the rest of our lives for the passions of the flesh.”  Yes we have power, in Christ, to overcome sin, but we must choose to rely on that power and resist the passions of the flesh.  The goal of our new life in Christ is for the world to see us differently.

Peter describes this life as follows, “With respect to this they are surprised when you do not join them in the same flood of debauchery,” I Peter 4:4.  Oh how wonder to live a life that causes people to ask, “What happened to you?” But oh how awful to live a life of sin that would cause people to ask, “What happened to you?”

This very morning I asked the Lord to continue to work in my life so that my life would reflect his life.  I want his life to be lived out in my life so that he would be glorified.

I truly believe this mornings blog is a wakeup call for some who read this.  It is time that you take inventory of what is happening in your life. Maybe you find yourself in the place where you are slipping back to where you used to be? If so, confess your sin to God.  Come back to Him in humility and express His fresh power to overcome sin in your life.  Or maybe you are striving to follow Christ and it is time you take inventory so that you can praise Him even more for His work of grace in your life.

May the world see Christ at work in your life today.  When this happened the world will take notice.