Tag Archives: Holy Spirit

Welcome to Bible Reading 2020

Geneis 1 2 from dark to light2aWelcome to 2020! We begin again at the beginning, Genesis 1 -2. I am thrilled you have chosen to follow my page and to read along with me. Let’s get started: Please take your Bible and read the first two chapters of Genesis 1 & 2.

Stop and ask: What stands out to you? What is God saying as He speaks through the Holy Spirit? What lessons does He want us to learn?

Know this; the purpose of Bible reading is to guide us into all truth so we can be mature discerning truth from error. As a base premise for this year memorize 2Tim 3:16 “Every scripture is inspired by God and useful for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the person dedicated to God may be capable and equipped for every good work.”

Genesis 1-2: The earth was without shape and empty, and darkness was over the surface of the watery deep BUT the Spirit of God was moving over the surface of the water. Isn’t that just like the heart of the unbeliever? They are without spiritual shape and their heart is empty, void of the Holy Spirit and without the Light of God. It takes the movement of the Holy Spirit to bring light into the soul.  The light was good in the beginning and it is good for the unbeliever because it illumines deficiencies and illumines understanding when we yield. “If then your whole body is full of light, with no part in the dark, it will be as full of light as when the light of a lamp shines on you.” [Luke 11]  When that happens you no longer are in darkness but now you are light in the Lord.  Therefore, live like children of light” [Eph 5 author paraphrase]

This leaves us with a challenge for 2020 and a question: Where are we spiritually and are we living as children of light?

Anointed For Service

Isaiah 61 1 anointed image

Isaiah 61 Have you heard or even voiced: what does God want me to do? I feel like I am spinning wheels and have no direction. Messiah didn’t have that problem so why do we? Perhaps the key is in knowing that you have been anointed – selected, elected for the service of the Lord.  Peter writes:  But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people of his own, so that you may proclaim the virtues of the one who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. John wrote:  Nevertheless you have an anointing from the Holy One, [1Jo 2:20]

Messiah knew his calling, his anointing, the reason God chose Him. He was sent to see into the hearts of men the desperate need for healing of the soul, mind and the body too. You, as His child, are also anointed to fulfill these same areas of need in the lives of those around you. It might be a mother who sees a child who has made a wrong choice, a father who has lost his job, a pastor who is drained from the heavy responsibilities of his position, a missionary in a far off land that is lonely.

Remember, if Jesus needed the Holy Spirit’s anointing so do we so we can fulfill the great commission. You are anointed precious believer!

Filled & Fed

Lev 24 “Lessons from the Tabernacle”

lev 24 menora2a

The Bible is replete with word pictures like the two pieces of furniture in the Holy Place in the Tabernacle. Each has a profound lesson about light and provision. The lessons should not be lost on us for us who are NT believers for each pictures Christ in His work.

The Menorah, a huge candelabra made of pure beaten gold, symbolized the Messiah. It was from this piece that branches, as pictured in John 15, must never be uncoupled from the center lamp. The cups were to be filled continually morning and night with pure beaten olive oil symbolizing the Holy Spirit. The shamesh, the center lamp, represents Christ as He illumines His church and His flock. It was never to be extinguished but filled regularly just as we once filled at salvation only need refreshing daily. Just as the priest was to fill each lamp daily, so Christ our High Priest should be filling us daily.  Be ye filled [Eph 5:18]

The table of showbread was filled weekly with 12 loaves of bread. The loaves of bread represent not just the 12 tribes of Israel but for the NT believer represent Christ as the Bread of Life, the Manna, the Bread of Heaven. We are to feed upon Him in His word for He is our provision.

Are we being filled daily as well as weekly? Tomorrow, as we begin our journey into Numbers, remember to be in His Word so we may be illumined and fed.

The Spirit of Wisdom

Exodus 28 Do you feel called to ministry? Do you feel like God wants you to teach? If so, remember that ‘not many of you should become teachers …because we will be judged more strictly.”

God takes seriously those who are called to ministry. James, the bondservant of Jesus, felt this way too because as he notes: we all stumble in many ways. Therefore, God spoke to Moses about Aaron and those who would be a part of the priesthood as well as those chosen to prepare them for ministry. God filled them with the spirit of wisdom that they might fulfill their duties.

Are we asking God to fill the men/women who will preach, teach and pray with His wisdom?

Secondly, God said Aaron would carry the names of the Israelites on his shoulders as he ministered that he might remember that. Because we are now a kingdom of priests this also applies to us.

Are we holding up the names of those are in need of our prayers?

Now that we are anointed with the power of the Holy Spirit we no longer are in need of costly garments but we are

in need of holiness. Aaron’s headpiece was labeled “Holiness to the Lord” and that should be our headpiece as well.

May God bless those who are called, those who are the chosen. Pray without ceasing those who are over you that they be holy as unto the Lord.

 What is your challenge from this reading? 

ex 28 the spirit of wisdom.2ajpg

Don’t Be Satan’s Bait!

bible2aProverbs 29 “Are You Satan’s Bait?”

“The fear of people becomes a snare but whoever trusts in the Lord will be set on high”

There are two kinds of fear; the fear that comes as a natural reaction due to an outside source to protect oneself from danger. The second is a fear that is not real but falls into the category of “what do they think…about me.” When “me” is inserted into the equation, and we listen to those voices, we have broken God’s Commandment “You shall have no other gods before “ME.” It can happen when we see or hear whispers and the receiver’s eyes are focused on “me.” Immediately we think; what are they saying about “me.” When we fall for Satan’s snare, he seeks to stamp “unworthy” on our foreheads. But we know that we are worthy in God’s eyes because Jesus died for us and we have stamped “Believer” on our foreheads. If we are not careful and fall for Satan’s tricks, we quench the Holy Spirit that has sealed us. “And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption” [Eph 4]

Now, right in the middle of this verse is the little but powerful word “but” which means there is a contrast to what came before and what follows. The phrase that follows is: “whoever trusts in the Lord.”  Do we really trust in the Lord? If we are fearful of people’s words or looks, we have fallen for Satan’s snare which a dead end street. Remember this, Jesus is on your side, He has never forsaken His own: “Trust in the LORD with all your heart… therefore, do NOT lean on your own understanding.” [Prov 3]. Open your ears to God speaking: “This is the way, walk in it,” [Is 30] He has the escape route. [1Cor 10]

All Scripture is taken from the FREE online Bible Study Tool: https://lumina.bible.org

 “Witnessing in the Spirit–Part One”

feet-led-passion

Do your palms begin to sweat, your mind runs amuck when you are faced with “witnessing?” Many find that even though their love for the Master is great, their boldness before others is weak. Fear not, you are not alone! Listen to what Paul says: “I did not come with superior eloquence or wisdom as I proclaimed the testimony of God..” Further he says that he was weak, fearful and trembled.

So how do we overcome these feelings when we love Jesus but find that our excuses outweigh our obedience? This is what Paul did:  He counted on the Holy Spirit’s power which reminds us of Zech 4:6 “Not by strength and not by power, but by my Spirit,”  When we employ that strategy we find that our words do not come from us but from Him. It is God’s work to open the hearts of men.

The Holy Spirit is the power behind our words and emotions.” He will prove the world wrong concerning sin and righteousness and judgment –  concerning sin, because they do not believe in me;” [Jn 16] Trust the Holy  Spirit to go before you and He will prepare the hearts. We are the feet of clay to be used by Holy Spirit.

 

Is washing your mouth out with soap enough?

ephesians 4 ps 141 set a guard over my mouth2As a child who often spoke first and thought later, the taste of soap became a regularity. Had it really done its job, this mouth would have been antiseptically clean. However until that antiseptic, called the Holy Spirit, did His work this mouth continued and will continue to exude that which dishonors and defames because  “It is not what enters into the mouth that defiles the man, but what proceeds out of the mouth, this defiles the man.” [Matt 15]

God has given us His divine power pertaining to life and godliness, but also with that comes responsibility, a responsibility that without Christ would be burdensome. But, Christ said, my yoke is easy and my burden is light. Christ can carry the yoke by himself but two are better than one because they have a good return for their labor. [Ecc 4].

If our salvation is so great why do we not live like it? We say, oh yes, I have this temper you understand, just accept me as I am. Saying that means we do not understand the depth of grief we cause the indwelling Holy Spirit or how deeply we quench His power. Perhaps that is why Paul wrote: let no unwholesome word (sapro = rottenness) proceed from your mouth. In other words, not just wash that mouth with soap but with the holiness that has been imparted to you so that you are edifying not corrupting.

Here’s where we need to end up: Psa 141:3 Set a guard, O Lord, over my mouth; Keep watch over the door of my lips.

Me, Insomnia and God

1peter 2 insomnia2Psalm 17 and 1Peter 2:

Peter said we are “living stones.” Even “living stones” experience insomnia; such as when the roar of the heavens and flashes of lightning blow across the landscape. What do you do in those hours as you wonder what the new morning will provide? Although the psalmist most likely was not lying awake in a thunderstorm, he was using his precious nighttime to listen to God and do some self-reflection.  How about us? Do we spend time in the night hours reflecting and allowing the Illuminating Holy Spirit to do his work? If we listen we might hear well done OR we may hear him whisper you grieved me and quenched my work within you. It is at that time that we are to apply Peter’s wise counsel: “abstain from fleshly lusts which wage war against the soul.” These are our natural appetites that appeal to our sinful nature and proving we are double-minded as James says.

Thus, we see why the psalmist said: “I have purposed that my mouth will not transgress.” Yes, we purpose and we did that yesterday and the day before and will do it again tomorrow. We are a fickle people who often need this time of self-reflection to see our conformity to this world and why we need the transforming power of the Word to renew our minds. And it must be a daily, moment by moment struggle but we can begin with that purpose as we submit to the Lord.

Beloved, like this living stone, let’s make conscious decisions to do some self-correction much like a sailor does out on the water.

“Talking to Yourself…”

 

psalm 34 assurance2How many times today have you caught yourself talking to yourself? Are you rehearsing the words of the accuser of the brethren? He says “you cannot be assured of your salvation.” You are not alone my friend. Before David was crowned king he faced many difficult and challenging circumstances and often if truth be known, they came about because he was blameshifting, not taking ownership of his own sin of unbelief in God. We too often go this route and fail to see God’s graciousness in spite of ourselves. It is important when God reveals this to us that we stop and testify to who God is and who we are.

Jesus reminded us “the mouth speaks what fills the heart.” [Matt 12] Therefore, we must fill our hearts with the inspired Word of God that we might resist the devil and tell him to “Go away.”  His desire is to make you doubt but God’s word is true: NO ONE or NOTHING can snatch us from the Father’s hands where our names are engraved upon his palms. Speak the words of Jesus and Satan will flee from us and in that moment, the Illuminating Holy Spirit will come and refresh our spirits.

If you want assurance, hold fast to your confession. Confidently approach the throne of grace. Cling to that which is good. “STAY, PRAY and WATCH.”  It is then that you will see the truth of John 3:36 “The one who believes in the Son “HAS,” eternal life.

Are You Called To Serve?

acts 5 called to servea2From the outset, Jesus had to deal with 12 unruly men who argued and passionately desired to be the greatest, but when the Holy Spirit came and indwelt them, all of that changed. Their desire now was to study, pray and impart wisdom to the new fledgling church.

But just as the church is growing and becoming a strong witness,  Satan’s ears perk up and he thinks he is invited to enter not to encourage but to distract. The church then and the church now encounters his orchestrated problems. Some are caused by us; some are caused by circumstances beyond our control such as widowhood. In the early church, widows were in need financially and in prayer support just as the widows we read about in the Book of Ruth.

God cares for the orphans and widows and He always has a plan.  God is never “a day late and a dollar short” to overrule Satan’s plans. This new fledgling NT church became the source of help to teach us the following principles: “Honor widows who are truly in need.”[ 1Ti 5:3]  “Pure and undefiled religion before God the Father is this: to care for orphans and widows in their adversity.”[Jam 1:27]

The apostles could have stopped their ministry to help. Instead, they chose to include others in the solution thus teaching the church the principle that we are a body with many gifts.  “Just as each one has received a gift, use it to serve one another” [1Pe 4:10] Today our churches employ this same principle.

Where are employing your gift to serve others in the Body of Christ?

This will be posted here on Feb 9th. Come and join us as we read through the NT/Ps and Proverbs each day.