I wonder if we, as believers just sit in the church pews Sunday morning half asleep? Oh yeah, we sit and hear messages of social gospel and nice things and good people and how we can be good people and how it’s good enough just to be good people. Or perhaps we do hear powerful, biblical sermons but yet not really hear the words nor be impacted enough to let them change our lives or our worlds. We come, we smile, we chat, we go and we walk to our cars feeling like we’ve done our duty to attend and yeah we’ve given God His Sunday time, and possibly our tithe, maybe even our talent but deep inside our hearts are empty, cold ~ and far from the Father, the Sovereign One who longs to have real fellowship with us. What is it we don’t get? What is we don’t understand? We can judge from critical hearts, and call the shots for others putting them in their place, while all the while our own problem goes undetected and unnoticed by our own heart. Our own selfish, spiritual blindness is our downfall and our spiral downward.
It’s time to wake up our pulpits and shake up our souls for such a time as this, when our world reels out of order, under every manner of evil, under the power of our enemy, the father of lies.
God IS in control but His holiness can’t look upon the wicked sin that has infiltrated even into our churches because of hearts, hardened in selfish ambition and compromising life styles. Truth is, as believers, God’s call on our hearts is to be salt and light to a world in desperate need! God has given clear warning of judgment and we hear it but do we really hear? Are we getting it? Are we understanding the reality of it? The people of Noah’s day, didn’t get it and faced God’s judgment! They woke up when the rains began but it was too late for their salvation. The people of Sodom and Gomorrah didn’t get it and their wicked city was destroyed! People of God ~ it is time to stand on holy ground without compromise and march the victory march with the Sovereign God whose deepest desire is to bring sinners into His Kingdom. To save them, forgive them, change them and renew their lives, through the power of His cleansing blood. Oh let it be our desire to reach out of of our comfort zones, and into the lives of needy souls, desperate for hope! Not for our own praise but only for God’s glory. Now is the time, people of God, to search our hearts and live in such a way that we influence our world as we share the Gospel message of salvation before the fire falls from heaven.
“No one lights a lamp and then covers it with a bowl or hides it under a bed. A lamp is placed on a stand, where its light can be seen by all who enter the house. For all that is secret will eventually be brought into the open, and everything that is concealed will be brought to light and made known by all. So pay attention to how you hear. To those who listen to my teaching, more understanding will be given. But for those who are not listening, even what they think they understand will be taken away.”
Luke 8: 16, 17, 18
Luke 8: 22
“One day Jesus said to His disciples, “Let’s cross to the other side of the lake.” So they got into a boat and started out……
As disciples, let’s embark on a holy journey, out of our comfort zones and cross to the other side of the lake.
When my son was a little fella, I found a square of bitter, baking chocolate etched with tiny, teeth marks in the corner, tossed into his garbage can. He was known for his mischievous ways, so even though I knew his plan to eat sweetly and secretly had turned very bitter indeed, I asked him if he had gotten into my baking chocolate. He overlooked the facts confirmed by the bite marks and denied it! I knew better and was quite upset to see such a little one tell a lie, and wondered just what we were in for in the years ahead, but even more crucial than my disappointment was his own deception. Oh how deceived he was to think all was well, when it wasn’t well at all ‘cuz one who deceives others will live a lie, but will never deceive a God of Truth. As we all fall short of God’s commandments, he had broken a principle and a commandment of God’s law, “Thou Shalt Not Lie.” He thought by lying he could break even, avoid reprimand and get away with it but those tiny teeth marks told the whole story with clear evidence! Lies are sweet for the moment when they portray innocence but a bitter poison to the soul.
How true in our world of truth versus lies; The evidence of a lie will not stand against the Truth. A man’s lies will entrap Him and catch him in his own web. . In Psalm 119: 29 the Psalmist pleads “Keep me from lying to myself.” Self deception is a fruit of sinful, human, nature, that comes back to sting and bite and lead us to self destruction. Access to God’s Word of Truth is not a right but a privilege made available to us through God’s grace. It’s the only cure for the plague of self deception and the restoration of self destruction. So..beautiful soul, stay true to truth today! Don’t succumb to even a little, white lie because the evil one and the father of lies lives there ready to snag you up and entrap you in the sticky, web of deceit and the more you try to escape the more that sticky web entraps. Today then, just make the wrong right, and trust a God of truth to sustain you in a world of deception, where lies are the norm and truth the minority.
“I have chosen the way of truth; I have set my heart on your laws.”
So today ~ this week, If and when insulted, bless back. When authority mistreats you, bless back. for in so doing you will be setting yourself up for blessing! We squander so much blessing with our need to have the last word, defend our rights or get even and when we defend ourselves we set our accuser up as our judge so, stay calm, be truthful and handle unfair treatment God’s way! Fade into the background and Let Him be your defense. He’s our Ancient Of Days and has been around since the beginning of time. He knows the end from the beginning and nothing slips by Him. He got your case from the inside out and He knows how to help you win it. So ~ toss your battle axe aside and put on your spiritual armor for you’re going to need it! Step out in faith protecting your mind with the powerful Sword of the Spirit, God’s Word ~ and do battle with love and peace ~ the believers most powerful weapons!
Ephesians 6: 10 -18
“Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.
“Do not let your hearts be troubled. You believe in God; believe also in me. My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.” When everything is ready, I will come and get you so that you will always be with me where I am. And you know the way to where I am going….”
“No we don’t know Lord.” Thomas said. “We have no idea where You are going, so how can we know the way?”
Jesus told him, “I am the Way, the Truth and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”
The mysteries of the Kingdom seemed like riddles to the disciples as they listened to their Master’s teaching. His mysterious Truths often left their heads spinning as they tried to untangle His thoughts and spoken words to make sense out of it all.
Jesus had just predicted Judas’ betrayal and Peter’s denial in the previous verses of Chapter 13. Jesus, had been troubled Himself on three occasions, 11: 33, 12: 27, 13: 21) however His confidence in God allowed Him to face the crisis. Faced with the upsetting words of 13: 33 the disciples confronted similar feelings. Now Jesus spoke of going away to prepare a place for them, and coming again to receive them unto Himself. Then He said, “Where I go you know, and the way you know.” But Thomas didn’t know. He walked and talked personally with One who called Himself the Way, The Truth and the Life. However, He didn’t get it at all, even after walking and talking with Jesus, He didn’t have a clue what on earth Jesus was talking about Verse 5. He didn’t know where Jesus was going and He certainly didn’t know the way.
Do we get it?
The “I am” phrases that Jesus purposely uses in the Gospel of John depict His identity and make His listeners think of the Old Testament name for His Father, ‘God’. Exodus 3:14, “I Am who I Am.. I Am has sent you.” Here Jesus tells His puzzled disciples, “I am the way, the Truth and the Life, no one comes to the Father, except through me.” Perhaps you’ve had the privilege of a rich Christian heritage that instructed and helped you form a solid Spiritual foundation. Perhaps you’ve sat under many godly, Bible scholars and professors and have been enlightened in Biblical truths. If so, then you know that we must believe and receive the Truth of Christ’s atonement to cancel out our sin debt and set us free from sin’s penalty of death! We must see our need to have our sins forgiven and allow the sinless, shed blood of the spotless Lamb of God, to cleanse us from all unrighteousness in order to bring salvation and forgiveness of sin.
If this is your first time in hearing the gospel or perhaps, as a beginner with Christ you may have questions and feel confusion, just as Thomas did, but hear Christ’s words today, “I am the Way, the Truth and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”
Christ spoke of rooms in His Father’s house and this word ‘room’ is related to the Greek verb meaning to abide, or dwell. Jesus promised His followers that He would have a place for them to dwell alongside Him, wherever He would be. Later, of course, after His death and resurrection, this dwelling becomes a place of ‘indwelling’ as Jesus makes His home in His follower’s hearts, through the Spirit. 14: 23
Friends, if Christ dwells within you, He prepares another place for you. He prepares an eternal home for those who have believed on His name. He gives a blessed, eternal Hope to those who call upon His name and accept His gift of salvation through repentance. He will come again for His followers, to take each one to be with Him in glory but there is only one way to enter heaven and claim the promise of the hope of eternal life after death. There is only ticket to heaven and Jesus identified Himself as the only way to God! Don’t be fooled by false teaching or wolves in sheep’s clothing!