Monday, September 26, 2016


I Believe In The Second Coming Of Jesus Christ
     I believe Jesus is Coming Again. I have a hope of the future that goes beyond human history. Because I have this hope I can live without confusion amid the chaos and struggle and whatever stress or trial may come to me.
      1. Jesus Christ raised from death
      “Behold My hands and My feet, that it is I Myself. Handle Me and see, for a spirit does not have flesh and bones as you see I have."  When He had said this, He showed them His hands and His feet.”  Luke 24:39-40
      Jesus came out of the tomb in His Resurrection Body.  Jesus was not a spirit, but had a real immortal and imperishable body. We will receive bodies like this at the final Resurrection (1 Cor 15:35-57).  Christ Jesus went up into Heaven from the Mount of Olives 40 days after His resurrection from the dead.  He is Coming Again at the End of the World.  He said so.  The prophets said so.  The angels said so. 
      “Now when He had spoken these things, while they watched, He was taken up, and a cloud received Him out of their sight.  And while they looked steadfastly toward heaven as He went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel, who also said, "Men of Galilee, why do you stand gazing up into heaven? This same Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will so come in like manner as you saw Him go into heaven." Acts 1:9-11
      “Behold, He is coming with clouds, and every eye will see Him, even they who pierced Him. And all the tribes of the earth will mourn because of Him. Even so, Amen.  "I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End," says the Lord, "who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty." Rev 1:7-8
      “Behold, I am coming quickly! Hold fast what you have, that no one may take your crown.”  Rev 3:11

A Prayer by Thomas Merton about Tomorrow
    “My Lord God, I have no idea where I am going [in this journey of life].  I do not see the road ahead of me.  I cannot know for certain where it will end.  Nor do I really know myself [and the decisions I must make], and the fact that I think that I am following Your will does not mean that I am actually doing so.  But I believe that my desire to please You does in fact please You.  And I hope I have that desire in all that I am doing.  I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire [to please You].  And I know that if I do this You will lead me by the right road though I may know nothing about it.  Therefore will I trust You always though I may seem to be lost and in the shadow of death.   I will not fear, for You are ever with me, and You will never leave me to face my perils alone.”

2. I Believe He May Come At Any Time.
      "But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, but My Father only.”  Matt 24:36
      “But, beloved, do not forget this one thing, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.”2 Peter 3:8-9
      The Time is unpredictable.  We cannot know the day or the hour.  We are to earnestly haste the hour until the trumpet sounds and He comes down from Heaven with a shout!

3. I Believe He Is Coming For His Church.
      “After these things I looked, and behold, a great multitude which no one could number, of all nations, tribes, peoples, and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, with palm branches in their hands, and crying out with a loud voice, saying, "Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!"  Rev 7:9-10
      “And He will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.”  Matt 24:31
      The purpose of Paul's teaching about the end of the world is so believers will encourage each other in the face of death.  He is not promoting speculation about the end times.  As a believer, I will walk with Christ in constant fellowship, purifying myself as He is pure, living as one whose heart daily prays, saying, Your will be done.  Even so, Come Lord Jesus.

      “Thus I will bless You while I live; I will lift up my hands in Your name.  My soul shall be satisfied as with marrow and fatness, And my mouth shall praise You with joyful lips.  When I remember You on my bed, I meditate on You in the night watches. Because You have been my help, Therefore in the shadow of Your wings I will rejoice.”  Psalms 63:4-7 

Tuesday, September 20, 2016


    “By faith Abraham, when he was called to go out into a place which he should after receive for an inheritance, obeyed; and he went out, not knowing whither he went.  By faith he sojourned in the land of promise, as in a strange country, dwelling in tabernacles with Isaac and Jacob, the heirs with him of the same promise: For he looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God.” Heb 11:8-10 (KJV
    God had a Plan.  God called Abraham and by faith he went on a journey to an unknown future.  We are to have this kind of faith as we live our lives.  The fact that we want to obey God does please Him.  The road may have many twists and turns but we continue on to the end of our journey.
    “And I say unto you, That many shall come from the east and west, and shall sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven.  Matt 8:11 (KJV)
    “The law and the prophets were until John: since that time the kingdom of God is preached, and every man presseth into it.”  Luke 16:16 (KJV)
    “No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him; and I will raise him up at the last day.  It is written in the prophets, 'And they shall all be taught by God.' Therefore everyone who has heard and learned from the Father comes to Me.”  John 6:44-45 (NKJV)
    Salvation is too important to be left entirely in human hands.  We are to trust & obey.  But God made His Plan before the Creation.  “Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began, But is now made manifest by the appearing of our Saviour Jesus Christ, who hath abolished death, and hath brought life and immortality to light through the gospel:”  2 Tim 1:9-10 (KJV)
     Job still trusted God.
    "Oh, that my words were written! Oh, that they were inscribed in a book!  That they were engraved on a rock With an iron pen and lead, forever!  For I know that my Redeemer lives, And He shall stand at last on the earth; And after my skin is destroyed, this I know, That in my flesh I shall see God,  Whom I shall see for myself, And my eyes shall behold, and not another. How my heart yearns within me!”  Job 19:23-27 (NKJV)
    “As for me, I will see Your face in righteousness; I shall be satisfied when I awake in Your likeness.”  Psalms 17:15 (NKJV)
    What Jesus taught about God’s Plan of Salvation.
    “And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life.  For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.  For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.”  John 3:14-17 (NKJV)
    “The people who sat in darkness have seen a great light, And upon those who sat in the region and shadow of death Light has dawned."  From that time Jesus began to preach and to say, "Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand." Matt 4:16-17 (NKJV)
    “Now after that John was put in prison, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God, And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel.”  Mark 1:14-15 (KJV)
    “And when it was day, he departed and went into a desert place: and the people sought him, and came unto him, and stayed him, that he should not depart from them.  And he said unto them, I must preach the kingdom of God to other cities also: for therefore am I sent.  And he preached in the synagogues of Galilee.”  Luke 4:42-44 (KJV)
    “And He was handed the book of the prophet Isaiah. And when He had opened the book, He found the place where it was written: "The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, Because He has anointed Me To preach the gospel to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, To proclaim liberty to the captives And recovery of sight to the blind, To set at liberty those who are oppressed; To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord."  Then He closed the book, and gave it back to the attendant and sat down. And the eyes of all who were in the synagogue were fixed on Him.  And He began to say to them, "Today this Scripture is fulfilled in your hearing."  Luke 4:17-21 (NKJV)
    What the church taught.
    “Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, having become a curse for us (for it is written, "Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree" ), that the blessing of Abraham might come upon the Gentiles in Christ Jesus, that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.”  Gal 3:13-14 (NKJV)

    Christ-on-the-cross gives to the Gentiles (and Jews) the blessing God promised to Abraham (verse 9).  It is correct to say that: through Christ, God made His promises to Israel (and the Gentiles) come true; and: Christ was the one who fulfilled Israel’s contract to God (through the Law). Compare Rom. 8:3-4; Acts 13:32-33; Heb. 9:15. 

Monday, September 5, 2016

Overcome the spirit of fear

Overcome the spirit of Fear
   Was Chicken Little right and the sky is falling?  Has WW III come near us in the Middle East?  We pray for the peace of Jerusalem and for men of faith to prevail.  But we pray especially for God’s Will To Be Done!
   1. Jesus tasted death for everyman.  Hebrews 2:9; 4:15.
   “I have a dogmatic certainty: God is in every person’s life. God is in everyone’s life. Even if the life of a person has been a disaster, even if it is destroyed by vices, drugs or anything else — God is in this person’s life. You can, you must try to seek God in every human life. Although the life of a person is a land full of thorns and weeds, there is always a space in which the good seed can grow. You have to trust God.”  Rorate Caeli
    “What we do see is Jesus: How can the church persevere when evil and death are still in the world? We look to Jesus both in his human life in a position "a little lower than the angels" and in his exaltation, now "crowned with glory and honor." His suffering as a human being led to his exaltation”—NLT Study Bible
    2. Real people doing real things.
   “I suppose therefore that this is good because of the present distress--that it is good for a man to remain as he is:” 1 Cor 7:26
   We are in John’s “Last hour” situation (1 John 2:18-20).  The end is near.  We are citizens of Heaven.  The message of Revelation spoke to those people in the time of John, and for us today.  The Lord Is Coming!  Some will not be able to repent.  Some will be righteous whatever happens.  But Jesus will test our works and our faith.
   “He who is unjust, let him be unjust still; he who is filthy, let him be filthy still; he who is righteous, let him be righteous still; he who is holy, let him be holy still.  And behold, I am coming quickly, and My reward is with Me, to give to every one according to his work.  I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End, the First and the Last."  Blessed are those who do His commandments, that they may have the right to the tree of life, and may enter through the gates into the city.”  Rev 22:11-14
   3. Power, Love, Sound Mind.
   “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” 2 Tim 1:7
    “God doesn't want us to be shy with his gifts, but bold and loving and sensible.  So don't be embarrassed to speak up for our Master or for me, his prisoner. Take your share of suffering for the Message along with the rest of us. We can only keep on going, after all, by the power of God, who first saved us and then called us to this holy work. We had nothing to do with it. It was all his idea, a gift prepared for us in Jesus long before we knew anything about it.”  2 Tim 1:7-9 (MSG)
   Our faith will be tested.  But we do not “quench the Spirit.”  We walk through the valley of the shadow of death, but we fear no evil.  We have authority from God to come boldly to His Throne of Grace.  We hope for the City whose builder and maker is God.
   “Love has been perfected among us in this: that we may have boldness in the day of judgment; because as He is, so are we in this world. There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love. We love Him because He first loved us.”
1 John 4:17-19
   “Herein is our love made perfect. When love is perfected in us we will have no fear of the judgment day. Those who love God supremely will not be terrified at his presence. Because as he is, so are we, etc. The great ground of boldness is that we are as Christ; purified like him, made sinless like him, filled with love like him and appear at judgment in his likeness. This transformation begins when we are converted, hence, in this world.  There is no fear in love. There may be reverential fear, but there is no terror. Fear of God gives way to love. Fear hath torment. Because it fills us with forebodings. We love him. His wonderful love in Christ fills every redeemed soul with love.” — Johnson’s Notes.
   With the eye of faith Christians look into Eternity.  God’s desire is that we continually progress, that we reach higher heights and go to new levels in Him. Oftentimes, as soon as we make the decision to step out in faith and obey God, the devil brings in fear to try to stop us. He’ll bring thoughts like, “What if you fail? What are other people going to think? You don’t have what it takes.” He’ll do his best to use fear to try to convince us to shrink back and stay where we are.
    “Father, thank You for giving me power, love and a sound mind. I open my heart to You and receive Your perfect love. Fill me with Your confidence and assurance to embrace everything You have for me, in Jesus’ name. Amen.”