Saturday, January 23, 2016

Mark 2: Constantly Questioning

What strikes me in today's reading is that no matter what Jesus and His disciples did or did not do, he was constantly questioned about it.

The scribes questioned in their hearts about the authority Jesus had to forgive sins (Mark 2:6).

The Pharisees questioned Jesus about His choice of dinner companions, citing them as sinners (Mark 2:16).

John's disciples fast, but not Yours.  Why? (Mark 2:18)

But Your disciples are picking grain on the Sabbath! That's against the law!!! (Mark 2:24

Have you ever been in a situation where every move and decision you make is questioned?  I imagine it would have the potential to be extremely frustrating.  Yet, Jesus doesn't appear to be frustrated or irritated.  He answers the unbelieving questions with wisdom and power.

It's difficult to believe that they would continue to question Jesus when they witnessed with their own eyes His power.  But they continued to question Jesus because they did not trust in Him.

Asking the Lord a question opens a personal dialogue between you and He.  He desires heart to heart communication.

Questioning the Lord out of a lack of trust reveals just that, a lack of trust.  OUCH!

How many times have we questioned the Lord because we didn't trust Him.  When I catch myself questioning the Lord due to a lack of trust, I ask Him to help me to trust Him.  He really likes that kind of request.

Lord, when the things around seem to be going the opposite of our prayers,  we ask You to help us to trust You.  Show Your hand hidden among the situations and circumstances, in the Name of Jesus, AMEN!!!

Thursday, January 21, 2016

John 2-4: Honesty, i,e., Worship in Spirit and in Truth

John 4:23-24

Amplified Bible, Classic Edition (AMPC)

23 A time will come, however, indeed it is already here, when the true (genuine) worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and in truth (reality); for the Father is seeking just such people as these as His worshipers.
24 God is a Spirit (a spiritual Being) and those who worship Him must worship Him in spirit and in truth (reality).

Jesus had just spoken to a woman who, most probably, was a societal outcast.  She had been with five men and the man she was living with now was not her husband.  In that point in history according to Jewish law, she could have been stoned to death.  Yet Jesus talked to and encouraged her to "worship the Father in spirit and in truth (reality); for the Father is seeking just such people as these as His worshipers"(John 4: 23).

This woman was honest with Jesus about her living arrangements (living with a man who was not her husband). Jesus spoke to her about her lifestyle (having been with five men previously).  He did not mention that she was sinning; she already knew that.  Instead, Jesus spoke to the true passion in this woman's heart...worship.

Could it be that this woman went from man to man searching for a means of release for the passion within her?  Jesus identified this woman's true desire, to worship God the right way!

Others probably ostracized this woman for her behavior, yet Jesus spoke to her true passion.  Although wrong in her behavior, she was honest about it with the Lord.  

How many Christians point the finger as those in sin, yet are not honest with the Lord about their own failings?

Worship Him in spirit and in truth! These are the worshipers He seeks.  Christians and non-Christians, He's calling you to be honest with Him.  Without honesty, there is no grace.  Without grace, well, we are lost!

Holy Spirit, empower us to be honest with You, so You can pour out Your powerful grace upon us!  Stop us from pointing the finger at others!  Instead, give us the ability to speak the true passion within others.  In the great and awesome Name of Jesus, AMEN!!! 

Sunday, January 3, 2016

John 1:15-51: Let His Light Shine, Reveal God!

John 1:18

 Amplified Bible, Classic Edition (AMPC)

18 No man has ever seen God at any time; the only unique Son, or the only begotten God, Who is in the bosom [in the intimate presence] of the Father, He has declared Him [He has revealed Him and brought Him out where He can be seen; He has interpreted Him and He has made Him known].

 Jesus revealed His Father to the earth.  We can know the Father's heart by reading how Jesus behaved while He was among us.  

What is even more awesome is that Jesus says that we can do "greater things."

John 14:11-13 

Amplified Bible, Classic Edition (AMPC)

11 Believe Me that I am in the Father and the Father in Me; or else believe Me for the sake of the [very] works themselves. [If you cannot trust Me, at least let these works that I do in My Father’s name convince you.]
12 I assure you, most solemnly I tell you, if anyone steadfastly believes in Me, he will himself be able to do the things that I do; and he will do even greater things than these, because I go to the Father.
13 And I will do [I Myself will grant] whatever you ask in My Name [as presenting all that I Am], so that the Father may be glorified and extolled in (through) the Son.

In other words, you and I can reveal God to the world around us!  Who we are in Him tells a story of the Father.  What is His heart?  How would He speak? What would He do?  Wow!  This is a weighty revelation, but a true one.  Although we are not God, we are empowered to represent Him!  This can only be done as we follow the lead of the His Spirit, spend time with Him, turn away from what we know is wrong and embrace His definition of right.  

Then...the world will see Him.  Remember, we are lights in this dark world.  We may never know (until heaven) how that Light shining through us has impacted others.  

In the Name of Jesus, let's shine His Light into every place we go.  He can transform even the darkest place with His Light!  AMEN!!!