Wednesday, April 23, 2014

NAOMI & THE FRUITS OF COMPROMISE


                                                                            (Ladies of the Bible)                      

 

RUTH 1

 

Pastor Rick Jackson

 

I. LISTENING TO THE WORLD [v. 1-14]

 

1. She Let Circumstances Dictate Her Life [v. 1-3]

 

2. She Let Convenience Dictate Her Life [v. 4]

 

3. She Let Custom Dictate Her Life [v. 5-14]

 

II. SITTING ON THE FENCE [v. 6-13]

 

She was a mugwump – her “mug” on one side of the fence, her “wump” on the other

 

1. She Heard Testimony [v. 6]

 

2. She Spoke Religiously [v. 8-9]

 

3. She Spoke Hypocritically [v. 13]

 

III. BLAMING THE LORD [v. 14-22]

 

1. She Encouraged Idolatry [v. 14-15]

 

2. She Discouraged Faithfulness [v. 16-18]

 

3. She Discounted God’s Blessings [v. 19-22]

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

VICTORY

LADIES BIBLE STUDY

Mrs. Rick Jackson

Let’s begin with our memory verse from last month – Psalm 23:1The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. 


Let’s talk about how to live a victorious Christian life – free from guilt!! The most ineffectual life of a Christian is one that is trapped in Satan’s lie—that your life is not worthy of service to God because of sin.  Guilt, my friends, comes to all of us at one time or another in our Christian walk, but it doesn’t have to last more than a moment.  Look with me now at 1st John chapter One!

This epistle was written by none other than the dear apostle John, the disciple who leaned upon Christ’s bosom at the Last Supper, the one who was dearly loved by Jesus.  He also wrote the 2nd and 3rd epistles of John, the Gospel of John and the book of Revelation.  Remember how his gospel begins, In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”  Now, see how he begins to write here:

RELATIONSHIP

1 That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, of the Word of life;

John begins by offering evidence that Jesus was God Incarnate, God manifested in the flesh.  He declares by sharing what was provable by the senses: “we have heard…seen with our eyes….our hands have handled….” because John had been with the Saviour. John was an eyewitness! He was affirming to his fellow believers [because this book was written to Christians] that he had been with Jesus, with the Word Incarnate.  He had heard Him speak, he had seen Him, and not just seen Him but gazed intently upon Him for long periods of time, at length, and, more so, he had opportunity to touch Him! Oh, what a glorious memory for John, now in his twilight years.  To know that the God of Eternity, the Word of Life, he says, had once walked with them!

 

2 (For the life was manifested, and we have seen it, and bear witness, and shew unto you that eternal life, which was with the Father, and was manifested unto us;)

Here John repeats what he had just said, that Christ, Who was with the Father [remember Micah 5:2 – “whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting”] but became Flesh, was made visible and he, John, was witness to that manifestation! This is John’s personal testimony to the Incarnation! He knew Christ face-to-face! Again, we’re reminded of what John wrote in the gospel of John – 1In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2The same was in the beginning with God. 14And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.”[John 1:1,2,14] Paul says in Philippians 2:7 – But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men.”

 

3 That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ.

The Greek word here for fellowship, koinōnia, means “a relationship between individuals involving a common interest.”[1] John’s faith in Christ gives him a relationship with God the Father of which he also wants his fellow believers to enjoy. Only a shared fellowship with Christ can produce genuine fellowship among Christians. God sent His Son from heaven to become a man, to have a shared relationship with us, John 3:16 – “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” So that when we accept his sacrificial death on the cross and become believers, then we, too, can have a shared relationship with the Father and with His Son AND with other believers! This is the first purpose John mentions for writing this letter.  Jesus said in John’s gospel – “20At that day ye shall know that I am in my Father, and ye in me, and I in you.
21He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him. [John 14:20,21]

 

Friendship with Jesus!
Fellowship divine!
Oh, what blessed, sweet communion!
Jesus is a Friend of mine.

 

4 And these things write we unto you, that your joy may be full.

John’s second purpose in writing this epistle is JOY!!  You realize, when Satan cannot change your relationship with the Lord, he seeks to mar your fellowship; to steal the JOY of your salvation?  That’s why it’s so important that we learn how to defeat the devil!! The verse we memorize in this chapter tonight is a VITAL weapon in our spiritual warfare!! Christians, of all people, should be joyful! Joy is not something that we manufacture for ourselves; joy is a wonderful by-product of our fellowship with God.[2]  Perhaps John was remembering what he heard Jesus say, “These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full.” [John 15:11]

FELLOWSHIP

5 This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.

In God there is no shadow at all—He has ALWAYS been LIGHT! He cannot be tempted with evil, He can do NO wrong. In other words, there is NO sin in God! He is HOLY!! God cannot look with favor on any form of sin. But Amos 3:3 tells us, Can two walk together, except they be agreed?” When light shines in on us, it reveals our true nature.  J.G. Whittier put it this way:

 

                        Our thoughts lie open to Thy sight,

                              And naked to Thy glance;

                    Our secret sins are in the Light

                              Of Thy pure Countenance.[3]

 

6 If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth:

When we are walking in the light of God, it makes plain our sinfulness! In order to be in fellowship with God, there can be no hiding of sin! Once we begin to lie, we inevitably end up lying to ourselves.  Perhaps the greatest Bible example is, once again, King David.  He committed the most grievous sins of adultery and murder, yet went on living his life as though nothing was wrong, even to the point of having Bathsheba moved into the royal palace.  He was lying to himself; all was fine – until Nathan was sent by God to him, to tell him the story of the man with the treasured lamb. Then David condemned the other man, yet felt no condemnation towards his own sin.  Not until Nathan confronted him.  Are we not the same way sometimes?

Titus 2:11-14 tells us, “11For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, 12Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; 13Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; 14Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.”

 

7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.

To walk in the light is to live in complete openness toward God. The psalmist said, He who dwelleth in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty (Psalm 91:1). Every Israelite knew that “the secret place of the place of the Most High” was the holy of holies in the tabernacle and temple—the place where God manifested His presence to Israel. That’s where Aaron the high priest represented Israel before Jehovah. God dwelt there in the midst of His people. The shekinah, the light of glory, would flash from between the cherubim which were located over the blood-sprinkled mercy seat.

In the virtue of the applied blood, Aaron could stand "in the light.” A great veil hung between the holy place and the holy of holies, keeping all except the high priest from entering. But every godly Israelite knew that the Lord was abiding there with His people. Therefore, every area of his life—labor and rest, waking and sleeping, thought and action—was tested by the presence of God.

The high priest had fellowship with God in the light by entering into His presence in the holy of holies. Today, every believer in Christ has the same privilege of fellowship! The veil has been rent from top to bottom. The glory of God is now seen in the person of the Lord Jesus. Walking in the light, therefore, means opening ourselves unreservedly to God and His Word—just as Aaron walked in the light of shekinah.[4]

 

Therefore, to walk in the light is to be honest with God, with ourselves, and with others.  When we sin, we should IMMEDIATELY confess and be cleansed. We should allow the Word of God to shine upon our sinful hearts. Romans 7:18 & 25 reminds us, “18For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not. 25I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin.” Colossians 1:14 – In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins.”

 

OWNERSHIP

8 If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.

The old-time preacher, Oliver B. Greene, said, “As long as we live we will be plagued with our own flesh; but thank God, the Holy Spirit is victor over the flesh, and He is the Divine Agent who gives US victory.”[5]  Here John is telling us that if we deny our sinful nature, we are being untruthful.  Just because we are saved, doesn’t mean we will never sin again.  It means because Christ died for our sins, we now have a second, a new, a divine nature with the power to live victoriously over indwelling sin! Romans 3:23 – “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;” Galatians 5:17 – “For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would.”

 

Now we come to our memory verse for this month:

 

9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

We should have no fear in confession for this is a verse of promise because of what Christ paid on the cross!  In order for us to walk in fellowship with God and with our fellow believers, we must actively participate in this confession. Our English word, confess, comes from two Greek words – hooms which means “the same” and lēgo which means “to speak.” Therefore, confess means, “to speak the same” or “to agree with” or “to say the same thing about.” In other words, to confess is to agree with God about our sins.  Many times we might rationalize or justify our behavior {“I was tired, it was someone else’s fault, it was a mistake, I was just teasing, it was just a “white lie”}, but what does God say? Confess means to come into agreement with God, Who hates sin! It follows that we, too, should hate sin!! Then God does the rest.  He forgives and cleanses!

 

To acknowledge our sin includes the forsaking of whatever is wrong but does not require us to “do penance” or beg and implore God to forgive us – that forgiveness is already promised, isn’t it? God will ALWAYS forgive! John Bunyan, the author of Pilgrim’s Progress, put it this way, “But one morning, when I was again at prayer, and trembling under the fear of this, that no word of God could help me, that piece of a sentence darted in upon me, ‘My grace is sufficient.’” Throughout John’s life he realized how vulnerable he was, and how great God’s grace is.[6]  Proverbs 28:13 – He that covereth his sins shall not prosper: but whoso confesseth and forsaketh them shall have mercy.” We can just be like the prodigal son in Luke 15:18 who said, “I will arise and go to my father, and will say unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and before thee.”

 

Now, when we confess our sins, we must believe, on the authority of God’s Word, that He forgives us. And if He forgives us, we must forgive ourselves. That, dear friends, is how we have victory over Satan and live without that guilt-trip!! Did we confess?  Does God forgive? What does His Word say?  He is faithful and just to forgive?  Am I forgiven?  Then it is done!! Let it go!

 

10 If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.

Here is how we take complete ownership of our sin nature.  If God calls a certain act sinful, and yet we deny it is sin, perhaps even calling it a “mistake” or “error in judgment,” we effectively call God a liar. Failure to acknowledge the reality of a sin that is identified as such by God, amounts to our presuming to contradict Him.[7] To restore fellowship with God does not mean we must live sinless lives, but that our sins should be openly admitted and forsaken.  It is, once again, a matter of reading His Word, being willing to accept the honest truth from His Word and not hiding behind it. Romans 3:22,23 – “22Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference: 23For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.”

 

I recently read a marvelous book written by the hymn writer, Frances Havergal, at the close of her life (she was only 42) and she was talking about a believer’s relationship with Christ.  She said,

 

So, dear friends, when once He has wrought in us the desire to be altogether His own, and put into our hearts the prayer, ‘Take my life,’ let us go on our way rejoicing, believing that He has taken our lives, our hands, our feet, our voices, our intellects, our wills, our whole selves, to be ever, only, all for Him. Let us consider that a blessedly settled thing; not because of anything we have felt, or said, or done, but because we know that He heareth us, and because we know that He is true to His word. But suppose our hearts do not condemn us in this matter, our disappointment may arise from another cause. What is to be done then? [First,] I think, very humbly and utterly honestly to search and try our ways before our God, or rather, as we shall soon realize our helplessness to make such a search, ask Him to do it for us, praying for His promised Spirit to show us unmistakably if there is any secret thing with us that is hindering both the inflow and outflow of His grace to us and through us.[8]

 

 

This is a poem she wrote along those lines that we often sing as a hymn at church --

 

Take my life, and let it be

Consecrated, Lord, to Thee.

Take my moments and my days;

Let them flow in ceaseless praise.

Take my hands, and let them move

At the impulse of Thy love.

Take my feet, and let them be

Swift and ‘beautiful’ for Thee.

Take my voice, and let me sing

Always, only, for my King.

Take my lips and let them be

Filled with messages from Thee.

Take my silver and my gold;

Not a mite would I withhold.

Take my intellect, and use

Every power as Thou shalt choose.

Take my will and make it Thine;

It shall be no longer mine.

Take my heart; it is Thine own;

It shall be Thy royal throne.

Take my love; my Lord, I pour

At Thy feet its treasure-store.

Take myself, and I will be

Ever, only, ALL for Thee.

 

 

May that be our prayer tonight!



[1] Paul R. Van Gorder, In the Family (Grand Rapids: Radio Bible Class, 1978), 17.
[2] Warren W. Wiersbe, The Bible Exposition Commentary, New Testament, Vol. 2 (Colorado Springs: Cook Communications Ministries, 2001), 477.
[3] J. Vernon McGee, Thru the Bible with J. Vernon McGee, Vol. 5 (Pasedena: Thru the Bible Radio, 1983), 760.
[4] Paul R. Van Gorder, When A Christian Sins (Grand Rapids: Radio Bible Class, 1978), 7-8.
[5] Oliver B. Greene, The Epistles of John (Greenville, S.C.: The Gospel Hour, Inc., 1968), 35.
[6] John Bunyan, Grace Abounding to the Chief of Sinners (public domain: Kindle, 2011), 204        .
[7] James Dyet, Studies in I,II, & III John, ed. Craig Bubeck (Colorado Springs: Scripture Press, 2000), 20.
[8] Frances Ridley Havergal, Kept for the Master’s Use (Philadelphia: Henry Altemus Co., 1895), Kindle ed.

Monday, April 21, 2014

GOD THE HOLY SPIRIT



MATTHEW 28:19-20

 

Pastor Rick Jackson

 

I. HE HAS DIVINE ATTRIBUTES

 

1. He is Omnipresent [Ps. 139:7-10]

2. He is Omnipotent [Lk. 1:35] And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.

3. He is Omniscient [Jn. 14:26, 16:13, 1 Co. 2:10-11]

4. He is Eternal [Heb. 9:14 How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?]

 

II. HE PARTICIPATES IN DIVINE WORK

 

1. Creation [Gn. 1:2, Job 33:4 The spirit of God hath made me, and the breath of the Almighty hath given me life.]

2. Giving Life [Romans 8:11 But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you.]

3. Gave Scripture [2 Sam. 23:2-3, Acts 1:16, 2 Tm. 3:16, 2 Pet. 1:20-21]

4. Salvation [Jn. 3:5]

 

III. HE IS CALLED GOD DIRECTLY AND INDIRECTLY IN THE SCRIPTURES

 

1. By Peter [Acts 5:3-4, 1 Peter 1:2, 3:18]

2. By Paul [2 Cor. 13:14; Eph, 4:4-6; Heb. 9:14, 10:29, 3:7-11 cp. Ps. 95:7-11]

3. By Christ [Mt. 28:19-20, Mk. 12:36]

Sunday, April 20, 2014

HE DIDN’T STAY


1 Timothy 3:16

 

Pastor Rick Jackson

 

I. HE DIDN’T STAY IN HEAVEN [1 John 1:1-3]

 

1. He Didn’t Stay in Heaven Because His Mission was too Important [3:1-5]

 

2. He Didn’t Stay in Heaven Because His Enemy was too Awful [3:6-10]

 

3. He Didn’t Stay in Heaven Because His Love was too Great [4:9-10, John 15:13 Greater love hath no man than this…]

 

II. HE DIDN’T STAY ON THE CROSS

 

1. He Didn’t Stay on the Cross Because He Finished the Work [John 17:4, 19:30; Hebrews 4:3, 12:2]

 

2. He Didn’t Stay on the Cross Because He Fulfilled the Word [Luke 24:44-48]

 

3. He Didn’t Stay on the Cross Because He was No Longer Forsaken [Mark 15:34, Luke 23:46-53]

 

III. HE DIDN’T STAY IN THE TOMB

 

1. He Didn’t Stay in the Tomb Because of His Person [Rm. 1:1-4a]

 

2. He Didn’t Stay in the Tomb Because of His Power [Rm. 1:4, John 10:17-18]

Therefore  doth my Father love me, because I lay down my life, that I might take it again. No man taketh it from me, but I lay it down of myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This commandment have I received of my Father.

 

3. He Didn’t Stay in the Tomb Because of His Position [Acts 2:21-36]

Saturday, April 19, 2014

QUESTION OF THE WEEK: WAS THE RESURRECTION OF JESUS CHRIST A HOAX OR HISTORY?


ACTS 17:29-34


Pastor Rick Jackson


I. THE CIRCUMSTANCES BEFORE THE EVENT


1. Reported by Matthew

-27:60 Solid Rock Tomb

-27:60 Stone “Door”

-27:62-65 Roman Guard

-27:66 Roman Seal

2. Reported by Mark

-15:42-45 Jesus was Definitely Dead

-16:9-14 Disciples were Frightened

3. Reported by John

-19:38-40 Jewish burial Customs

II. THE FACTS AFTER THE EVENT


1. The Tomb was Empty [Lk. 24:1-3]

2. The Stone was Moved

-Lk. 24:2 apokulio, to roll away

-Mt. 28:2 “rolled back the stone from” apokulio- lithos; ajpov apo, apo' a primary particle; "off," i.e. away (from something near),

-Mk. 16:3-4 apokulio ejk ek, ek; a primary preposition denoting origin (the point whence action or motion proceeds), from, out (of place, time, or cause; literal

-Jn. 20:1 ai[rw airo, ah'-ee-ro; a primary root; to lift up; by implication, to take up or away; specially, to sail away (i.e. weigh anchor)

3. The Guard was AWOL [Mt. 28:4]

4. The Grave clothes were Folded [Jn. 20:3-9]

5. The Lord was Appearing [Acts 1:1-3, I Cor. 15:1-8]


III. THE EXPLANATIONS FOR THE EVENT


1. The Disciples Stole the Body [Mt. 28:11-15] not so- they fled while he was alive

2. The Unbelieving Jews Stole the Body - no reason to do so, they never produced a body nor did they deny it was missing

3. The Wrong Tomb - inconceivable that the disciples, the woman, the unbelievers, the Roman guard, the owner of the tomb, etc. would do so

4. The Swoon Theory - medically speaking-no!, the change in the disciples-unheard of unless He arose

5. The Resurrection [Jn. 20:24-31] - the only, true option


Romans 1:4 And declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead:

Friday, April 18, 2014

Philadelphia


Prophecy Today Devotions  
April 18, 2014 

Jimmy DeYoung
Thank you for reading my Prophetic Daily Devotionals! 

 Please visit my website to learn more Bible prophecies being fulfilled in these last days. 

 

Revelation 3:10

 

Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth.

 

For further study - Revelation 3:7-13

 

The passage for today's devotional is actually the letter to the church in Philadelphia, a church in full operation in Asia Minor, modern-day Turkey, during the life of John the Apostle who recorded Revelation.

 

The book of Revelation came from God to Jesus to an angel who gave it to John to write it down, Revelation 1:1. In Revelation 2 and 3 we have the letters to the Seven Churches in Asia Minor, churches that John had ministered in and had a relationship with over the years.

 

The church at was one of the two churches of the Seven Churches that received no condemnation from the Lord. The other was the church in Smyrna. It was hard to pick the church letter for our devotionals for today, however, this letter has such great promises to those of us who are Christians and are awaiting the coming of the Lord.

 

The Rapture of the Church is an event that happens before the terrible time of judgment in the future, the seven-year Tribulation Period. Notice our key verse, verse 10. The Lord promises to those of us who are saved that He will take us up to be with Him before the judgment starts.

 

The promise is, "I will keep you from, the judgment." He did not say that He would take us out of that time of judgment but He would "keep us from that time". This means that the Rapture of the Church comes before the Tribulation. That promise is worth the entire letter.

 

However, there is more in this letter to praise the Lord for. Notice verse 8. The Lord tells us that He has set an "open door" before us that no man can shut. He then reminds us that we are of "little strength". 

 

At the same time, He commends those in the church at Philadelphia and each of us, as well today, who have kept His word and have not denied His word.

 

I love the thought in verse 8, that we the "minority," those of little strength; as we stand on the "authority," the Word of God; we can reach the "majority," those people we come in contact with as we go through open doors that only He can shut.

 

Notice just one more great thought, verse 11. John exhorts us by quoting Jesus who says, He is coming "quickly." When the Rapture starts, it will be quick and therefore, we should live so that no one can take away the "crown" that the Lord will give us.

 

These are the crowns that we receive at the "Judgment Seat of Christ" for works we have done in His power and for His glory. We must not allow our relationship with any man to take away those crowns.

 

By the way, the text says "He is coming quickly." I know that it means, it goes quickly when it begins.

 

However, I do believe that His coming is closer than it has ever been and I live and believe that it will happen in my lifetime, and yours. Even so come Lord Jesus.

 

PRAYER THOT: Thank you, Lord, for the open doors you give us to serve You and also for the promise to call us up to be with You before the terrible judgment comes to the earth.

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