Tag Archives: digging the word

Await My Return

The Commands of Jesus Series

Matthew 24:42-44  “So you, too, must keep watch! For you don’t know what day your Lord is coming.

43  Understand this: If a homeowner knew exactly when a burglar was coming, he would keep watch and not permit his house to be broken into.

44  You also must be ready all the time, for the Son of Man will come when least expected.

Jesus spoke a lot about the need to be ready, to keep your guard up, he told us to be found faithfully serving in the work that he has called us to do.

We were all created for good works (Ephesians 2:10) and we are expected to be working on those good works until the day that Jesus takes us home and relieves us of our labor. What an awesome day that will be when we will finally be free from the old sin nature, free from the pain and sorrow of his world.

Luke 12:37  The servants who are ready and waiting for his return will be rewarded. I tell you the truth, he himself will seat them, put on an apron, and serve them as they sit and eat!

What an amazing thought, that we will be seated by our Savior and that he will serve us, the one that was bruised for us will forgive the multitude of wrong things that we have said and done and he will serve us himself. Not the angels or some other heavenly being or saint from years long ago but Jesus is going to serve me!

Thank you Lord for your incredible love that looks beyond my ability to be faithful and and obedient. Thank you for the sacrifice that you made for me! May I always be doing the ministry that you have called me to do until the day that you take me home.

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Bring In the Poor

The Commands of Jesus Series

Luke 14:12-14  Then He turned to His host. “When you put on a luncheon or a banquet,” He said, “don’t invite your friends, brothers, relatives, and rich neighbors. For they will invite you back, and that will be your only reward.  13  Instead, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, and the blind.  14  Then at the resurrection of the righteous, God will reward you for inviting those who could not repay you.”

Proverbs 14:31  Those who oppress the poor insult their Maker, but helping the poor honors Him.

What an awkward situation we have here. Jesus is at a rich leader of the Pharisees home for dinner and he lets the guy know that he shouldn’t invite all of his rich friends to the banquet but rather he should have invited “the poor, the crippled, the lame and the blind.”

The Pharisees loved to show off and there is no doubt that Jesus was the only poor man there, these guys still didn’t get it. Jesus wasn’t impressed with their whitewashed appearance, he looked down into the heart and saw their attitudes, just like he did when the poor widow gave her offering in the temple.

If we spend too much of our time planning activities with our friends and with those that have the power to help us get ahead, then we will not be focused on the desire of Jesus for us and we will have no interest in helping others.

Help me Lord to always be focused on what is important to you, help me to be a friend to those that are in need, showing the same compassion that you have for them.

You might like to read:

Easy Faith And Great Faith  //  Choose Love //  I Am A New Creation

Ask, Seek and Knock

The Commands of Jesus Series

Matthew 7:7-11  “Keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you.  8  For everyone who asks, receives. Everyone who seeks, finds. And to everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.

9  “You parents–if your children ask for a loaf of bread, do you give them a stone instead?  10  Or if they ask for a fish, do you give them a snake? Of course not!  11  So if you sinful people know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give good gifts to those who ask Him.

Relationships require a lot of effort to make them successful and my relationship with God is no exception to the rule. Seeking first the kingdom of God is job number one.

Matthew 6:33 How could I grow closer to God without putting in the effort? What other relationship has all of the benefits that my relationship with God has?

I need to be careful that the cares of the world don’t creep in and build up space between God and myself.

  • I need to ask of him like a traveler asks for assistance in finding my destination.
  • I need to seek with great care for this very valuable property.
  • I need to knock with perseverance as a beggar pleads for benevolence.

1 John 3:22  And we will receive from Him whatever we ask because we obey Him and do the things that please Him.

Psalms 105:3-4  Exult in His holy name; rejoice, you who worship the LORD.  4  Search for the LORD and for His strength; continually seek Him.

Help me to understand more about prayer Lord, I need a better understanding of the scriptures on this topic and I need to spend a lot more time asking, seeking and knocking so that I will be receiving, finding and gaining access through closed doors.

You might like to read:

Depend On God  //  Where Do Your Blessing Come From  //  Praying For Real

Be Born Again

The Commands of Jesus Series

John 3:3,16  Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, unless you are born again, you cannot see the Kingdom of God.”

“For God loved the world so much that He gave His one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life.”

Jesus made it crystal clear that there is only one way to get to heaven and that is through the means that he made available, but so many are not listening, they ignore the simple message as they look for a different plan.

We must realize that every man regardless of rank, position or the amount of power that he has, must be born again, there is not any fine print with some exceptions listed. We are all in the same sad situation before we meet our savior, without any way of repairing the relationship that has been damaged by sin.

Men love to deviate from God’s instructions and choose to deal with Him on our own terms, kidding ourselves into believing that we are somehow in control of the situation but God has set the terms for our relationship with him, terms that will not be changed or amended for any person.

I must pray that I never get used to the fact that people are going to hell everyday. I need to make the most of every opportunity to share my faith with a world full of people that are desperate for a Savior.

Thank you Jesus for giving me such a simple way to inherit eternal life. Help me to be bold in spreading the good news.

You might like to read:

Did You Hear The Good News?  //  God Has My Back  //  God Love’s His Church

Be A Servant

The Commands of Jesus Series

Matthew 20:25-28  But Jesus called them together and said, “You know that the rulers in this world lord it over their people, and officials flaunt their authority over those under them.  26  But among you it will be different.

Whoever wants to be a leader among you must be your servant,  27  and whoever wants to be first among you must become your slave.

28  For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve others and to give His life as a ransom for many.”

Everybody can relate to the words of Jesus in verse twenty-five, but there is verse twenty-six and beyond that really throws us off. Just about anybody that is in a position of authority has a tendency to take advantage of some perks that come along with the job. Most officials whether they are government or even church leaders are tempted to be treated better or to get something that they wouldn’t normally get.

Jesus makes it so clear, this is an issue that the Bible doesn’t leave open for interpretation, he tells them that the worlds leaders do “this” but for anybody that wants to follow Jesus example of  leadership, you are going to be a servant.

Serving was a very important subject that Jesus talked about a lot. Jesus knew that the best way for the world to see his love was for his followers to be awesome lovers, he knew that the world would know that we are his children by our love for others, especially for the people that persecute us.

Do you display enough love in your life that it makes people wonder why you are different?

I am so thankful Lord that you loved me first, help me to look past my rights and my selfishness and show your love to everyone that I have contact with.

You might like to read:
Jesus Wants His Disciples To Be Loving  //  I Am A New Creation  //  Choose Love

Honor Your Parents

The Commands of Jesus Series

Matthew 15:4  God says, ‘Honor your father and mother,’ and ‘Anyone who speaks disrespectfully of father or mother must be put to death.’

Exodus 20:12 “Honor your father and mother. Then you will live a long, full life in the land the LORD your God is giving you.”

The ten commandments can be split into two separate sections, the first involves commands that tell us how to relate to God and the second section tells us the ground rules on how to treat our fellow man.

The first command that pertains to our relationships with people is the one that tells us how to treat our parents. We are to show honor to them, that means not only respect and submission, but also to take care of a person, to nurture and sustain them.

It isn’t any surprise that God wants us to treat our parents with the highest regard, after all he told us to love our enemies and those that persecute us. So then even if you think that your parents don’t deserve it, you are not off the hook, we have to love our enemies so how much better should we teat our parents. No matter how old we get to be or how independent we become, we are still obligated to love and respect them and to take care of their needs when they cannot.

Lord help me to love my parents and care for them as they grow older. Thank you for Christian parents.

 

Deny Yourself

The Commands of Jesus Series

Luke 9:22-25  “The Son of Man must suffer many terrible things,” He said. “He will be rejected by the elders, the leading priests, and the teachers of religious law. He will be killed, but on the third day He will be raised from the dead.”

23 Then He said to the crowd, “If any of you wants to be My follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross daily, and follow Me.  24  If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for My sake, you will save it. 25 And what do you benefit if you gain the whole world but are yourself lost or destroyed?

The most prevalent false doctrines that the world embraces is selfishness and greed. The world’s motivation is to get everything that it can get at any cost, but that is the problem, they have been deceived and they haven’t seen what the price tag is on what they are buying into.We have before us the most extreme example of a person that lived for others, Jesus was not selfish, he suffered for the sake of others, he was wrongfully rejected when he could have been the most popular guy in town, he was killed instead of being judgmental and punishing the people all around him that he had the right to condemn.

Here is the reality of the situation, even if you get every piece of wealth that the world has to offer, every treasure that there is but if you didn’t follow Jesus then you have lost it all.

I need to remember what the price tag was for my eternal destiny, I have been bought at a very high price, the debt of my sin has been paid and I need to show my gratitude for Jesus sacrifice by living each day for him.

Lord, help me to fight against the world’s economic policy, the stakes are too high, I need to give up my life for Christ sake so that I will be saved. Lord help us to never forget how great a sacrifice that you made for us.

Don’t Cast Your Pearls To The Pigs

The Commands of Jesus Series

Matthew 7:6 “Don’t waste what is holy on people who are unholy. Don’t throw your pearls to pigs! They will trample the pearls, then turn and attack you.

Proverbs 9:7 Anyone who rebukes a mocker will get an insult in return. Anyone who corrects the wicked will get hurt.

Jude 1:10 But these people scoff at things they do not understand. Like unthinking animals, they do whatever their instincts tell them, and so they bring about their own destruction.

“I get no respect” the famous line from Rodney Dangerfield could easily be used by God. Some people love to make fun of Christians and show complete disrespect for the gospel message, Jesus referred to these people as pigs. The pigs are a good word picture for the Jewish audience that Jesus was speaking to since they knew that the pigs were ceremonially unclean and they were repulsive to the Jews.

It is difficult to understand somebody being so bad off that we are excused from trying to persuade them to understand the gospel. Most of the Pharisees probably fit into this category of people since they were so self righteous and stubborn that they could not see the value of Jesus message. Most people do not fit into this category and I endeavor to share the good news with almost everybody without excuse.

Matthew 10:14 If any household or town refuses to welcome you or listen to your message, shake its dust from your feet as you leave.

Thank you Lord for your gift of salvation, help me to feel the urgency to share the good news more with those that I meet.

Pay Your Taxes

The Commands of Jesus Series

Matthew 22:17-22  Now tell us what You think about this: Is it right to pay taxes to Caesar or not?”

18  But Jesus knew their evil motives. “You hypocrites!” He said. “Why are you trying to trap Me?  19   Here, show Me the coin used for the tax.”

When they handed Him a Roman coin,  20  He asked, “Whose picture and title are stamped on it?”  21  “Caesar’s,” they replied.

“Well, then,” He said, “give to Caesar what belongs to Caesar, and give to God what belongs to God.”  22  His reply amazed them, and they went away.

Everybody hates paying taxes, we all probably think, “those guys don’t have a clue how to spend our money wisely so why should I give them more of it.”

These religious leaders were posing as legitimate Christ followers that wanted to know what Jesus teaching is on supporting the civil government, but there has never been a disguise that could outwit Jesus, he knew what there purpose was in asking the question.

Out of this quick discussion comes two rules that a Christ follower is to live by:

Give to Caesar what he is entitled to have.

Jesus didn’t come to earth to fight against the civil government, doesn’t the Bible teach us that those that are in authority have been put there by God.

Romans 13:1-2  Everyone must submit to governing authorities. For all authority comes from God, and those in positions of authority have been placed there by God.  2  So anyone who rebels against authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and they will be punished. 

Give to God what he is entitled to have.

Isn’t it strange that most people are afraid to cheat on their federal income taxes but they don’t worry at all about cheating God out of the tithe.

Malachi 3:8-10  “Should people cheat God? Yet you have cheated Me! “But you ask, ‘What do You mean? When did we ever cheat You?’ “You have cheated Me of the tithes and offerings due to Me.  9  You are under a curse, for your whole nation has been cheating Me.  10  Bring all the tithes into the storehouse so there will be enough food in My Temple. If you do,” says the LORD of Heaven’s Armies, “I will open the windows of heaven for you. I will pour out a blessing so great you won’t have enough room to take it in! Try it! Put Me to the test!

Thank you Lord for opening the windows of heaven and blessing me, you are faithful to those that trust you in every area of life, I pray that I will always be obedient to give back to you in my tithes and my talents.

Watch and Pray

The Commands of Jesus Series

Matthew 26:41  Keep watch and pray, so that you will not give in to temptation. For the spirit is willing, but the body is weak!”

Ephesians 6:18  Pray in the Spirit at all times and on every occasion. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all believers everywhere.

James 1:14  Temptation comes from our own desires, which entice us and drag us away.

Jesus gives us the best strategy that we could possibly use to keep us from giving into temptation and he kept it simple too, that is important because we don’t need a plan that is hard to implement when temptation is so easy to fall for, we have to have something that is very doable.

Step one: Keep watch

Remember that your body is so weak and that it is easily enticed by the desires of our sinful nature. We have to keep a constant guard up because we are just one stupid decision away from doing something that will haunt us for a very long time. One decision away from wrecking our family, our homes and our testimony.

Step two: Pray

While it is good to be physically prepared and keep up your guard it is even more important to deploy the strategy of prayer to fight against the enemy. Jesus said that our spirit is willing but we have to overcome that weak body that is so ready to compromise. The only way to reinforce that wimpy body is to stay in prayer constantly, asking God to give us the strength and protection that we need everyday.

Lord Jesus thank you for providing a way out from every temptation. Help me to stay vigilant and praying at all times. I need to rely on you to help me to overcome.