Enjoy The Spirit

1 Long ago, at many times and in many ways, God spoke to our fathers by the prophets, but in these last days He has spoken to us by His Son, whom He appointed the heir of all things, through whom also He created the world. ~ Hebrews 1:1-2

The author of the book of Hebrews starts the book by explaining that God didn’t speak to everyone. In fact, God didn’t speak all the time. There were times when the Word of the LORD was rare, such as during the time of Eli, recorded in 1 Samuel 3:1. There was even 400 years of silence, but when the day of Pentecost came, recorded in Acts 2, God poured out His Spirit on all flesh, fulfilling Joel’s prophecy recorded in Joel 2.

No longer does God only speak to His people through the prophets, but now He speaks to all of His people through His Son Jesus because Jesus is the one mediator between God and man (1 Timothy 2:5). Does that mean we no longer have prophecies? Of course not! We still have prophecies today. Otherwise, we would have to get rid of any prophecy written after the day of Pentecost, which is every prophecy recorded in the New Testament after the ascension of Jesus. So, with that said, prophecy hasn’t disappeared. Prophecy is still here today. The only difference is that the prophets are not the only ones who can hear from God and commune with Him.

How encouraging is that? No longer do we have to go through man to hear from God. God speaks through anyone willing to be a vessel for Him because now His Spirit dwells in us. We are His temple. Yes, prophets are still important today, but no longer are they the only ones who hear from God. No longer is there a barricade between God and mankind. Now, there is only one step between God and mankind: repentance. All we have to do is repent, and the LORD will begin to change our lives. When we seek Him, we find Him. When we knock, the door is opened to us. The Spirit Himself dwells inside of us. We are no longer alone.

Peace. Love. Go Forth and Enjoy The Spirit.

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Always Return To God

1 In the twelfth year of Ahaz king of Judah, Hoshea the son of Elah began to reign in Samaria over Israel, and he reigned nine years. And he did what was evil in the sight of the Lord, yet not as the kings of Israel who were before him. Against him came up Shalmaneser king of Assyria. And Hoshea became his vassal and paid him tribute. But the king of Assyria found treachery in Hoshea, for he had sent messengers to So, king of Egypt, and offered no tribute to the king of Assyria, as he had done year by year. Therefore the king of Assyria shut him up and bound him in prison. Then the king of Assyria invaded all the land and came to Samaria, and for three years he besieged it. In the ninth year of Hoshea, the king of Assyria captured Samaria, and he carried the Israelites away to Assyria and placed them in Halah, and on the Habor, the river of Gozan, and in the cities of the Medes.

24 And the king of Assyria brought people from Babylon, Cuthah, Avva, Hamath, and Sepharvaim, and placed them in the cities of Samaria instead of the people of Israel. And they took possession of Samaria and lived in its cities. 25 And at the beginning of their dwelling there, they did not fear the Lord. Therefore the Lord sent lions among them, which killed some of them. 26 So the king of Assyria was told, “The nations that you have carried away and placed in the cities of Samaria do not know the law of the god of the land. Therefore he has sent lions among them, and behold, they are killing them, because they do not know the law of the god of the land.” 27 Then the king of Assyria commanded, “Send there one of the priests whom you carried away from there, and let him go and dwell there and teach them the law of the god of the land.” 28 So one of the priests whom they had carried away from Samaria came and lived in Bethel and taught them how they should fear the Lord. ~ 2 Kings 17:1-6, 24-41

The people of Samaria were completely removed from their land and were replaced with foreigners from all over the conquered world. These people didn’t know the LORD, so they continued worshipping their own gods. So, the LORD brought down judgment on them.

When the king of Assyria, Sennacherib, saw the judgment of God, he acknowledged that it was because the people he placed in Samaria didn’t know how to serve the LORD. So, what did he do? He had an Israelite priest, who was taken out of the land, sent to Bethel to teach them the way they should worship the LORD. They did what the priest taught them, but they mixed it with their own gods and idols; nevertheless, God relented. He showed them grace even though they didn’t follow only Him but mixed righteousness with unrighteousness. He showed them grace in a graceless time.

If God showed grace to foreigners dwelling in His land who didn’t even fully follow Him, how much more grace will He show to those who are striving to follow Him today? Yes, God expects perfection from us, but when we strive for perfection and miss that mark, He has mercy on us and gives us grace. Don’t allow your past to keep you from your future. We all make mistakes. We all give in to temptation. We all have low moments, but we have to get back up. Even if we fall, we can’t remain on the ground. We have to keep going. God shows mercy and gives grace to anyone who truly seeks Him with all that they have. Don’t ever be ashamed to come to God. He’s waiting with His arms open wide.

Peace. Love. Go Forth and Always Return To God.

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The Victorious Life

1 Observe the month of Abib and keep the Passover to the Lord your God, for in the month of Abib the Lord your God brought you out of Egypt by night. ~ Deuteronomy 16:1

The Passover is the foreshadowing of Jesus dying on the cross for all mankind. He is the Lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world according to John the Baptist in John 1:29. In other words, Jesus is the fulfillment of the Passover. We do not need to sacrifice goats, or sheep, or bulls, or lambs any longer, because we have Jesus as our Passover Lamb according to Paul in 1 Corinthians 5:7. Jesus died for the sins of the whole world.

Passover was to be celebrated in the first month, which is in the Spring. Spring speaks of new life, new hope, new dreams, new beginnings, and that is exactly what Jesus did for us. He came that we would have life and have life more abundantly (John 10:10), meaning, that we can have all that was listed earlier, a new life, a new beginning etc. All we have to do is to accept Jesus as our personal LORD and Savior.

Then Egypt is indicative of sin. Just like God delivered the Israelites out of Egypt, the land of slavery, Jesus has delivered everyone who believes in Him out of slavery to sin. You don’t have to be burdened down with a load of care. The Scriptures say to cast your burdens and cares upon Him, for He cares for us (Psalms 55:22 and 1 Peter 5:7).

Everything you need for a victorious life in Jesus is bought and paid for for you. There is no good thing that He will withhold from you. Trust Him today, He has your best interest in heart.

Father, thank You for sending Your Son, Jesus Christ, to the earth to die for me. I accept your free gift of life. Help me to serve You and trust You wholeheartedly. Right now, I give You all my cares and all of my burdens. I give You all the things that concern me right now, and I lay them all down at Your feet. Help me to turn them all over to You and leave them all there with You. In Jesus’ name, I pray, amen.

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Clean Some Leaven

7 Cleanse out the old leaven that you may be a new lump, as you really are unleavened. For Christ, our Passover lamb, has been sacrificed. 8 Let us therefore celebrate the festival, not with the old leaven, the leaven of malice and evil, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth. ~ 1 Corinthians 5:7-8

The Israelites prepared for the Passover by cleansing the leaven out of their homes. This was a foreshadowing of the good and better things that have now come. Jesus, our Passover over lamb, has been sacrificed, and we overcome the world and its sin through Him.

No longer is it just a physical act; now, this action is also spiritual. We remove the spiritual leaven from our lives. The sins, false teachings and beliefs, strongholds, wrong relationships, etc. are all broken and cleansed from our lives through Jesus. This may not happen overnight, but it will happen through perseverance in Christ.

No longer does our sin have to separate us from God; now, through Christ, we are cleansed of our sin and forgiven. We are now reconciled to God. We are now a new creation being molded into the very image of Christ.

Peace. Love. Go Forth and Clean Some Leaven.

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God Our Present Help

God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear though the earth gives way, though the mountains be moved into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam, though the mountains tremble at its swelling. ~ Psalms 46:1-3

Have you ever been in a place in your life where you feel surrounded by strangers? Even though those around you are your friends and acquaintances, you still feel abandoned and alone, like no one loves you or cares about you? Proverbs 18:24 says that there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother, and that friend is Jesus. He is our refuge in times of stormy weather. He is our strength in times of weakness. He is our very present help in times of trouble.

It doesn’t matter what others might say about you. It doesn’t matter how they try to make you feel. Even when others insult you and say all manner of evil against you, there is one who will never leave you nor forsake you. Again, His name is Jesus. Even when all the world comes against you and the earth seem to give way beneath you. Wild things are happening all around you, things that cause the strongest heart to flutter; Jesus is your peace.

How do you receive such peace? First, you have to come to Jesus and accept Him as the LORD and Savior of your life. Then you must learn to trust Him with everything in your life. Trust that He will do the right thing by you even if it doesn’t feel like He is at the moment, trust and believe. You can only get to that point in your life if you learn His ways and learn who He is. How? By reading the Bible. The Bible is God’s written revelation of Himself to us. If you want to learn who God is and how He operates or works, then read His revealed word to us. You cannot trust someone you barely know. You must form a relationship with Him through constant prayer, through worship and through the study of His word.

So, the next time the mountains around you seem to shake and quiver, or even if they seem to be moved and fall into the heart of the sea and its waves roar and foam, remember God is for you and can and will deliver you, so trust Him to do what is right for you, and He will deliver you. Heavenly Father, thank You that You are my Help in times of trouble. Thank you that You hold all things in Your hands, and no one can pluck me out of Your hands. Help me to understand who You are and to know Your ways. In Jesus’ name, I pray, amen.

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Tending Sheep

10 And Jesse made seven of his sons pass before Samuel. And Samuel said to Jesse, “The Lord has not chosen these.” 11 Then Samuel said to Jesse, “Are all your sons here?” And he said, “There remains yet the youngest, but behold, he is keeping the sheep.” And Samuel said to Jesse, “Send and get him, for we will not sit down till he comes here.” 12 And he sent and brought him in. Now he was ruddy and had beautiful eyes and was handsome. And the Lord said, “Arise, anoint him, for this is he.” ~ 1 Samuel 16:10-12

Jesse had seven of his sons pass before Samuel, all except for his youngest, David. The first was tall and strong; surely God must be pleased enough with him to make him king. But no, he was not chosen. The others passed in like manner, but they were not chosen either. Finally, Samuel asked, are these all of your sons? No one even thought about calling David. He is young, giddy-headed, just a keeper of sheep; he will never be chosen. These big sons of mine have fought in the army. They have followed Saul to war. Surely, God will choose one of them. But God did not choose any of them.

Sometimes, people, even your own family, may not see your potential; they may just think of you as a child keeping the sheep. They may see you as worthless, no good, or in the menial task you are performing now. That is because they only see the raw material, but the cool thing is that God sees the finished product. Maybe the CEO of a corporation, or the next senator, or President. Maybe the next successful small business owner with a huge outreach. He sees you for who you are, not where you are.

It does not matter where you are right now physically; it matters where you are spiritually. God wants to bless you and use you. So, continue tending those sheep to the best of your ability until your anointing brings you your crown. For if you are faithful, God will open the door of opportunity. Just be faithful in the little things, and God will give you big things in your time. That needed job or promotion you’ve been praying for is on its way. So, hold on, hang in there; your Samuel is on his way.

Father, bring peace and joy to the hearts of your people as they labor in the fields, waiting for their door of opportunity to open. We believe You are a faithful God who delights in giving His children good gifts. Thank you for hearing us today. In Jesus’ name, we pray, amen.

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God’s Favor

5 For His anger lasts only a moment, but His favor lasts a lifetime; weeping may stay for the night, but rejoicing comes in the morning. ~ Psalms 30:5

If God loves you, and He does, He will discipline you, and that is how you know you are a son or a daughter because God does not discipline an illegitimate child. But know this: when God does discipline you, it’s only for a short time because He loves you. But His favor, His love, and His mercies last a lifetime; they are forever.

His favor will open doors that were once closed; His love brings that promotion that was out of reach. His mercies will protect the wayward child and restore the broken relationship. His kindness is the reason why weeping will only last a night, but when the sun comes up, it brings joy, new hope, renewed mercies, and fresh blessings.

Here is a truth: God does not want to be angry; He would much prefer to be generous. And when He is angry, He will always look for ways, or for someone to stand in the gap so that He will not have to carry out the deserved punishment. Whatever God does, it is always for our own good.

Rejoice in the fact that God loves you and cares for you. Rejoice that He notices you among all the billions of other people that inhabit Earth. We are like His pride and joy, and He loves us.

Be blessed today, be joyful today, and be hopeful and optimistic today; God loves you and cares for you.

Father, we, Your children, come and present to You the offering of praise. Receive it today and leave behind a blessing. Thank You, in Jesus’ name, I pray, amen.

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Our Risen Savior

1 Now after the Sabbath, toward the dawn of the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to see the tomb. And behold, there was a great earthquake, for an angel of the Lord descended from heaven and came and rolled back the stone and sat on it. His appearance was like lightning, and his clothing white as snow. And for fear of him the guards trembled and became like dead men. But the angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified. He is not here, for He has risen, as He said. Come, see the place where He lay. Then go quickly and tell His disciples that He has risen from the dead, and behold, He is going before you to Galilee; there you will see Him. See, I have told you. ~ Matthew 28:1-7

Early Sunday morning, the day we Christians call Resurrection Sunday, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to the tomb of Jesus. But they found an empty tomb. Jesus was not there; He had risen as He said He would. He lived, though He was dead, and now He is alive forevermore. Paul said that if Jesus indeed had not risen from the dead, then we have no salvation, and we are still in our sins, and we Christians are most to be pitied of all people. Not only that but they are found to be false witnesses about God because they testified that He raised Jesus from the dead.

Friends, I want to assure you that Jesus did die a physical death; He was buried and laid in the tomb for three days and three nights, and He did rise again, holding the keys of death and Hades in His powerful hand.

There is something else I want you to notice. The Scriptures declare that an angel descended from heaven and came and rolled back the stone and sat on it. But the account does not say anything about Jesus coming out of the grave at that time. Instead, it says,

… the angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified. He is not here, for He has risen, as He said. Come, see the place where He lay …”

Jesus had already risen by the time the angel got there. Because, after all, it was not the angel’s job to let Jesus out, but to let the believers in, and to prove to the world the empty tomb. If the angel had not rolled the stone away, the world would never know that the tomb is empty. But the soldiers saw the angel come down. They saw him roll the stone away. They saw that the tomb was empty but did not see Jesus emerge from the tomb, yet they had seen His dead body go into the tomb, and they feared greatly, so much so that they became as dead men. There was no denying that Jesus had risen from the dead. The empty tomb proved it for them.

You and I can rejoice in knowing that what we believe is true. What we hold on to is not a cleverly devised lie but the everlasting Truth. We can be assured that what was passed down to us about the Resurrection is an eyewitness account. So, rejoice in your salvation, and rejoice in the resurrection of your LORD and Savior.

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for sending Your Son, Jesus Christ, who was obedient to You and accomplished everything that You sent Him to accomplish. I accept His free gift of life, and I rejoice in the fact that He is alive forevermore and that He is coming back for me. Help me to live for You and to serve You wholeheartedly without becoming disillusioned or weary. In Jesus’ name, I pray, amen.

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A Justified Enemy

9 How much more then, since we have now been justified by His blood, will we be saved through Him from wrath. 10 For if, while we were enemies, we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, then how much more, having been reconciled, will we be saved by His life. ~ Romans 5:9-10CSB

Christ died for us while we were still His enemy. He didn’t die for the righteous because there was none to die for; no, instead, He died for the unrighteous—the sinner and betrayer—the very ones who put Him on the cross and the ones who would blaspheme Him in the future. Christ, the perfect Lamb of God, died for His enemy.

This is the reason salvation is so important because, without it, you will die as an enemy of God. What does that mean? Jesus refers to Hell as a place of gnashing of teeth. This isn’t because of the pain that the people will be in, but that they’ll be tortured in Hell. That there are torturers who are tormenting those in Hell because they’ve chosen to be an enemy of God. So, those torturers are gnashing their teeth against those in Hell on behalf of God.

Dear LORD, please forgive me for every temptation I have given into. Please continue to wash me clean and cleanse me from all unrighteousness. Thank You for Your blood that washes me clean. Thank You for Your sacrifice because I don’t deserve it. Thank You for Your perfect love that keeps me safe from all evil. Thank You, LORD, for calling my name and forming me into a new creation in You. In Jesus’ name, I pray, amen.

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Unclean To Clean

31 You must keep the Israelites from their uncleanness, so that they do not die by defiling my tabernacle that is among them. ~ Leviticus 15:31CSB

In the Law of Moses, God explained that certain natural bodily functions were unclean; some even required a sacrifice at the end of the days they were unclean for. At first glance, this sounds unfair and quite mean of God, but when you take into account that God is preparing them for the new and better covenant, it begins to make sense.

See, in the Law of Moses, bodily functions out of our own control made us unclean, but today our fleshly desires that feel natural and out of our own control, are what make us unclean. No longer are the things out of our control what is separating us from God. Instead, no temptation that has ever come to us not tempted someone else. In fact, we overcome because Christ first overcame.

No longer is our own uncleanness out of our control. Now, we have been given the power, authority, and weapons to overcome all temptation of the enemy. No sin is who we are. No sin did God plague us with. We are called out of darkness into His everlasting Light so that we might be transformed by the renewal of our mind and be the very dwelling place of God Himself.

Dear LORD, please forgive me for every sin I’ve given into. Please forgive me for every sin I’ve claimed as just who I am. Cancel my words of death, lies, and separation from You, for You created me to be with You. Your desire is for my good and not for evil. Please fill me with the Spirit of Discernment so that I might know the difference between Your Truth and the lies of the world and my flesh. Please cover me in Your precious blood and protect me from every attack of the enemy. Teach me to put on the full armor so that I might stand strong in the day of temptation. In Jesus’ name, I pray, amen.

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