What’s In Heaven??? Bible Ballistics: Vol. 12 No. 02

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Bible Ballistics: Vol. 12 No. 02 What’s In Heaven???

 

There’s an old gospel song (written by Don Nix as best as I can determine) with a refrain that reflects the mentality of our world, “Everybody wants to go to heaven but nobody wants to die”! I want us to consider heaven in light of what scripture says in contrast to what popular culture has tried to make it. Jesus makes it really clear in his words to the disciples just before He went to the cross.

Let not your heart be troubled:

ye believe in God,

believe also in me.

2 In my Father’s house are many mansions:

if it were not so,

I would have told you.

I go to prepare a place for you.

3 And if I go

and prepare a place for you,

I will come again,

and receive you unto myself;

that where I am,

there ye may be also.

4 And whither I go

ye know,

and the way ye know.

5 Thomas saith unto him,

Lord,

we know not whither thou goest;

and how can we know the way?

6 Jesus saith unto him,

I am the way,

the truth,

and the life:

no man cometh unto the Father,

but by me.”   John 14:1-6

We live in a culture that has concluded that ‘nice’ people go to heaven and ‘bad’ people go to hell; but there are a few problems with that outlook—first they have taken on the authority to determine “who” is ‘nice’ and who is ‘bad’ by their own standard not God’s. Another problem is that many today have also created “heaven” in their own image—anything from party-time for eternity, to a never-ending rodeo, to a ‘nirvana’ for all, totally oblivious to the holiness and character of The Almighty God who sent His only son to save those who will believe!

Jesus told his disciples, and us, that the only way to heaven is through HIM—salvation through His blood on the cross—the substitutionary, atoning sacrifice for all who will repent and believe in/accept His sacrifice for sin. For our sin is the issue no matter what men may say—it is what separates us from God, and it will have no place in heaven—for heaven is where Jesus The Son, God The Father and The Holy Spirit have their eternal home. Heaven is also contains a place Jesus is preparing for His own. And it is a place where HE is worshipped. As I’ve often heard—“Heaven is a prepared place for a prepared people, who have placed their faith in Jesus”, and are pleased to love and serve HIM who delivered their souls from hell.

And as Moses

lifted up the serpent in the wilderness,

even so must the Son of man

be lifted up:

15 That whosoever believeth in him

should not perish,

but have eternal life.

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.

17 For God sent not his Son

into the world

to condemn the world;

but that the world

through him

might be saved.

18 He that believeth on him

is not condemned:

but he that believeth not

is condemned already,

because he hath not believed

in the name

of the only begotten Son

of God.

19 And this is the condemnation,

that light is come into the world,

and men loved darkness

rather than light,

because their deeds were evil.”    John 3:14-19

While Jesus saves us by grace through faith, He also saves us and equips us for HIS service, a service of love given to the One who loves us, for His purpose, and His glory as well as our own good!

But God, who is rich in mercy,

for his great love

wherewith he loved us,

5 Even when we were dead

in sins,

hath quickened us together

with Christ,

(by grace ye are saved;)

6 And hath raised us up together,

and made us sit together

in heavenly places

in Christ Jesus:

7 That in the ages to come

he might shew the exceeding riches

of his grace

in his kindness

toward us

through Christ Jesus.

8 For by grace are ye saved

through faith;

and that not of yourselves:

it is the gift of God:

9 Not of works,

lest any man should boast.

10 For we are his workmanship,

created

in Christ Jesus

unto good works,

which God hath before ordained

that we should walk

in them.”   Ephesians 2:4-10

We are born again by the Holy Spirit of God, and being born again we become “his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works”, with heaven as our home, not just in eternity but even now—for our minds are to be set on our heavenly king–always. We have access into the throne-room in heaven by Jesus, our constant Savior and source.

For we have not an high priest

which cannot be touched

with the feeling of our infirmities;

but was in all points tempted

like as we are,

yet without sin.

16 Let us therefore come boldly

unto the throne of grace,

that we may obtain mercy,

and find grace to help

in time of need.” Hebrews 4:15-16

When Jesus puts us into His Kingdom service, we’re not on our own, but by His power we are empowered to continually pursue HIS mission for us (whatever that may be) by depending on His supply!

When they therefore were come together, they asked of him, saying,

Lord, wilt thou at this time

restore again the kingdom

to Israel?

7 And he said unto them,

It is not for you to know the times

or the seasons,

which the Father hath put

in his own power.

8 But ye shall receive power,

after that the Holy Ghost

is come upon you:

and ye shall be witnesses

unto me

both in Jerusalem,

and in all Judaea,

and in Samaria,

and unto the uttermost part

of the earth.”   Acts 1:6-8

His witnesses, but if you don’t know Him, you have nothing to witness to! Why would people who reject God want to go to heaven when it will be so full of GOD everywhere? In fact it saddens me that so many in Christendom today, are so eager to make the “church” palatable to the world, that they have made the church a place where everything is welcome except God’s Word and His Holy Spirit! The church was commissioned to be God’s witnesses—God’s way—not man’s.

And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying,

All power is given unto me

in heaven

and in earth.

19 Go ye therefore,

and teach all nations,

baptizing them

in the name of the Father,

and of the Son,

and of the Holy Ghost:

20 Teaching them

to observe all things

whatsoever I have commanded you:

and, lo,

I am with you alway,

even unto the end of the world.

Amen.” Matthew 28:18-20

We are sent out in Jesus Name—but also HIS power “Go ye therefore”, not our own. What an amazing way God has—He never asks us to do anything that HE hasn’t already provided for. In fact Jesus told us that without Him (and His power) we can do nothing!

I am the vine,

ye are the branches:

He that abideth in me,

and I in him,

the same bringeth forth much fruit:

for without me ye can do nothing.”   John 15:5

What does all of this have to do with “heaven”? A lot really, for Jesus isWho” is in heaven, and “who” has provided the way to be there. So it ought to be Him that we desire to be with—yet it amazes me that people have made “heaven” something totally removed from Jesus and scripture—simply a place for “nice” people, with or without Jesus   To read the obituaries is to see that almost everyone has gone to heaven, regardless of whether they have a relationship with Jesus or not. Well, I’m sorry friends, scripture is clear, heaven is where God The Father, God The Son, and God The Holy Spirit are, and only those who belong to them will reside there (who also have their citizenship there when they are born again)! While this is not an easy, or popular thing to communicate, it is truth—God’s truth that never changes—it is life or death truth.

And he that sat upon the throne said,

Behold, I make all things new.

And he said unto me,

Write:

for these words are true and faithful.

6 And he said unto me,

It is done.

I am Alpha and Omega,

the beginning and the end.

I will give unto him that is athirst

of the fountain

of the water of life

freely.

7 He that overcometh

shall inherit all things;

and I will be his God,

and he shall be my son.

8 But the fearful,

and unbelieving,

and the abominable,

and murderers,

and whoremongers,

and sorcerers,

and idolaters,

and all liars,

shall have their part 

in the lake which burneth

with fire

and brimstone:

which is the second death.”    Revelation 21:5-8

Jesus died so that mankind—all who believe in HIM—won’t have to experience the “second death”, but can have life in and through HIM!

But now

being made free from sin,

and become servants to God,

ye have your fruit unto holiness,

and the end everlasting life.

23 For the wages of sin

is death;

but the gift of God

is eternal life

through Jesus Christ our Lord.”   Romans 6:22-23

Praise God from whom all blessings flow.”(The Doxology)!!! Amen and Amen. Heaven is the place where God is, and I want to be there with Him, and while many may make jokes about ‘going to hell to party with their friends’, Hell is no joke and Jesus tells us about a man who painted a picture of hell; and he didn’t’ reveal it as a “party hardy”, but as a place of torment; a place where he didn’t want his loved ones to come. You can read the entire account in Luke 16:19-31, while we’ll just look at portions:

…. the rich man also died, and was buried; 23

And in hell he lift up his eyes,

being in torments,

and seeth Abraham afar off,

and Lazarus in his bosom.

24 And he cried and said, ….

send Lazarus,

that he may dip the tip of his finger

in water,

and cool my tongue;

for I am tormented

in this flame.

25 ….. but now he is comforted,

and thou art tormented……..

27 Then he said, I pray thee therefore, father,

that thou wouldest send him

to my father’s house:

28 For I have five brethren;

that he may testify unto them,

lest they also come

into this place of torment.

29 Abraham saith unto him,

They have Moses

and the prophets;

let them hear them.

30 And he said,

Nay, father Abraham:

but if one went unto them from the dead,

they will repent.

31 And he said unto him,

If they hear not Moses

and the prophets,

neither will they be persuaded,

though one rose from the dead.”   Portions of Luke 16:22-31

Hell is a place of torment! But the part of this story that I don’t want us to miss is that when the man in hell (hades) asked to have the beggar, Lazarus, sent to testify to his brethren, the response is surprising– that if they wouldn’t believe Moses and the prophets, they wouldn’t believe even if one returned “from the dead”! I find it most interesting that as Jesus told this story (and I believe this is a true story not a parable, as Jesus didn’t’ call anyone by name in any of His parables), He knew He was going to the cross to die for our sin, be buried and rise from the dead—and that most wouldn’t believe this truth then, and still don’t today.

So my point is, what are you expecting heaven to be? A party where you’ll just keep on doing what you want in a Utopian paradise; or are you just wanting relief from you present consequences? Or are you in love with Jesus and want to spend time worshipping HIM forever—for that is what we’ll be doing in heaven—not experiencing our earthly passions to a higher degree!

And the four beasts had each of them six wings about him; and they were full of eyes within:

and they rest not day and night,

saying, Holy, holy, holy,

Lord God Almighty,

which was,

and is,

and is to come.

9 And when those beasts give

glory

and honour

and thanks

to him that sat on the throne,

who liveth for ever and ever,

10 The four and twenty elders

fall down before him that sat on the throne,

and worship him

that liveth for ever and ever,

and cast their crowns

before the throne,

saying,

11 Thou art worthy, O Lord,

to receive glory

and honour

and power:

for thou hast created all things,

and for thy pleasure

they are

and were

created.” Revelation 4:8-11

Total, perfect, complete, and continual worship from His creations in Heaven! It’s what we are to seek here and now, and what Jesus told us to pray for (and pursue) continually.

After this manner therefore pray ye:

Our Father

which art in heaven,

Hallowed be thy name.

10 Thy kingdom come.

Thy will be done

in earth,

as it is in heaven.” Matthew 6:9-10

And while we’re on the subject, let me just say this—God’s Word reveals that “worship” is a life lived in yielded-ness to HIM and HIS will—not a 20 minute song service once a week. Worship is a 24/7 response to God’s authority and will in our lives—His Word and His Way, a heart that longs for heaven and the God who dwells there!

Yet we also need to consider that when believers face God, we will give an account of our stewardship of the life that HE gave us to use in service to Him. We will give an account to Jesus for our use of the resources that HE has blessed us with. So as we close, I want to share a passage with you, and simply say that “gold, silver and precious stones” are the things that are of God and His Spirit (man can’t produce them); and the “wood, hay and stubble” are the things that men/women do out of our own wisdom, strength and pride—that which is produced by ‘flesh’ not God! Do you have your foundation in Jesus? What are you building with on that foundation? Only One Way–Jesus—and heaven for those who are HIS own!!!

For other foundation can no man lay

than that is laid,

which is Jesus Christ.

12 Now if any man build upon this foundation

gold,

silver,

precious stones,

wood,

hay,

stubble;

13 Every man’s work

shall be made manifest:

for the day shall declare it,

because it shall be revealed by fire;

and the fire

shall try every man’s work

of what sort it is.

14 If any man’s work abide

which he hath built thereupon,

he shall receive a reward.

15 If any man’s work

shall be burned,

he shall suffer loss:

but he himself shall be saved;

yet so as by fire.”   1 Corinthians 3:11-15

Are you longing to worship God every day or just once a week? If heaven is all about the worship of God, will you be at home there, or are you worshipping the creature (see Ro. 1:25)?

Draw nigh to God,

and he will draw nigh to you.

Cleanse your hands,

ye sinners;

and purify your hearts,

ye double minded.” James 4:8

Amen and Amen!

Be Still…..Really??? Bible Ballistics: BBs #485

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Bible Ballistics: BBs #485  Be Still……Really???

 

Just a few passages today to get us through a busy Friday with some encouragement from The Word. Sometimes we just need to take a break with Jesus!!

Be still,

and know

that I am God:

I will be exalted among the heathen,

I will be exalted in the earth.

11 The LORD of hosts is with us;

the God of Jacob is our refuge. Selah.”   Psalm 46:10-11

To ‘be still” is often a hard thing to do, but when we don’t take time to “be still” before God, we become overcome with the busy-ness of life that continually bombards us.

Come unto me,

all ye that labour

and are heavy laden,

and I will give you rest.

29 Take my yoke

upon you,

and learn of me;

for I am meek and lowly in heart:

and ye shall find rest

unto your souls.

30 For my yoke is easy,

and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30

We have a wonderful Savior who calls us to walk beside Him as He promises that when we “yoke up” with Him, that He is the strength and sustenance that we need in any situation. It’s when we try to pull our own load that we become weary in soul, mind and body! Jesus knows that we need “rest unto your souls” and HE will provide it—even when the weariness is from serving HIM!

And the apostles gathered themselves together unto Jesus,

and told him all things,

both what they had done,

and what they had taught.

31 And he said unto them,

Come ye yourselves

apart

into a desert place,

and rest a while:

for there were many coming and going,

and they had no leisure

so much as to eat.” Mark 6:30-31

So as you hustle about on this busy day, take some time to look up, and draw near to Jesus and “rest” in HIM!

Know ye that the LORD

he is God:

it is he that hath made us,

and not we ourselves;

we are his people,

and the sheep of his pasture.

4 Enter into his gates

with thanksgiving,

and into his courts

with praise:

be thankful unto him,

and bless his name.

5 For the LORD is good;

his mercy is everlasting;

and his truth endureth

to all generations.” Psalm 100:3-5

Amen and Amen!!!

But I Can’t Do THAT??? Bible Ballistics: BBs #484

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Bible Ballistics: BBs #484 But I Can’t Do THAT???

 

I want to share with you all this morning something that is on my heart. As I was thinking about the difficulty that we face finding contentment in this crazy world of a “Get all you can. Can all you get. Then sit on the can!” mentality, it seems that every one wants more! It is reported that John D. Rockefeller, when asked, “How much money is enough?” responded, “Just a little bit more!” And he is considered by many to be the richest man of modern times, as he was the first “billionaire” in the early 1900’s. But no matter how much “more” we get—it will never be enough to satisfy, especially if “more” is where we are seeking our hope and fulfillment!

Consider the mentality of our culture—advertising is one of the biggest industries in America, trying to convince us that we need the latest, fastest, smartest, most popular techno-toys on the market; receiving exorbitant fees to convince us that we need to eat this “food” of “beauty”, the healthiest new ‘gimmick’ food fad, or the newly tweaked bling that “everyone” has! But God has a different message for us.

For what shall it profit a man,

if he shall gain the whole world,

and lose his own soul?

37 Or what shall a man give

in exchange for his soul?” Mark 8:36-37

Peter also wrote on the fleeting nature of this world’s ‘gain’!

But the day of the Lord will come

as a thief in the night;

in the which the heavens

shall pass away

with a great noise,

and the elements shall melt

with fervent heat,

the earth also

and the works that are therein

shall be burned up.

11 Seeing then that all these things

shall be dissolved,

what manner of persons ought ye to be

in all holy conversation

and godliness,

12 Looking for

and hasting unto

the coming of the day of God,

wherein the heavens

being on fire

shall be dissolved,

and the elements

shall melt with fervent heat?”    2 Peter 3:10-12

As life is fleeting, we need to wisely choose to live for Jesus, pursuing a godly attitude and a contented heart and mind.

But godliness

with contentment

is great gain.

7 For we brought nothing

into this world,

and it is certain we can carry

nothing out.

8 And having food

and raiment

let us be therewith content.” 1 Timothy 6:6-8

Paul reminded Timothy to pursue godliness rather than material gain, even as Jesus told us in the Sermon on the Mount to pursue heavenly treasure! Where is your heart?

Lay not up for yourselves treasures

upon earth,

where moth

and rust

doth corrupt,

and where thieves

break through

and steal:

20 But lay up for yourselves treasures

in heaven,

where neither moth

nor rust

doth corrupt,

and where thieves

do not break through

nor steal:

21 For where your treasure is,

there will your heart be also.”   Matthew 6:19-21

And just one more passage for us to ponder today as we get our mid-week activities checked off of our list.

Let your conversation

be without covetousness;

and be content

with such things as ye have:

for he hath said,

I will never leave thee,

nor forsake thee.

6 So that we may boldly say,

The Lord is my helper,

and I will not fear

what man shall do unto me.”    Hebrews 13:5-6

Let’s make sure our confidence is in our God and Savior—not in this world’s ‘gain’! We don’t have to fret or fear—our God is faithful to provide!!! Amen and Amen!

Don’t Miss The Little Things!!! Bible Ballistics: Vol. 12 No. 01

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Bible Ballistics: Vol. 12 No. 01 Don’t Miss The Little Things!!!

 

We often look at scripture cursorily (going rapidly over something, without noticing details; hastily; superficially) and miss things that can make a difference in how we understand what we are reading. I want us to consider a passage that has some small words that make a real difference.

For to me

to live

is Christ,

and to die

is gain.”   Philippians 1:21

We often hear this verse quoted as “to live is Christ, and to dies is gain”, and while that is partially true, it gives a false impression of what Paul is saying, so we must look at the extended context of this passage and find that Paul said that “to me”, “to live is Christ”! Paul is encouraging the Philippian believers by sharing his sufferings for the sake of the gospel with them, he points out that many were being encouraged to boldness because of his perseverance in suffering. Yet not everyone was ‘living’ for Christ Jesus!

And many of the brethren in the Lord,

waxing confident by my bonds,

are much more bold

to speak the word

without fear.

15 Some indeed preach Christ

even of envy

and strife;

and some also

of good will:

16 The one preach Christ of contention,

not sincerely,

supposing to add affliction to my bonds:

17 But the other of love,

knowing that I am set

for the defence of the gospel.

18 What then?

notwithstanding, every way,

whether in pretence,

or in truth,

Christ is preached;

and I therein do rejoice,

yea, and will rejoice.

19 For I know that this shall turn to my salvation

through your prayer,

and the supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ,

20 According to my earnest expectation

and my hope,

that in nothing I shall be ashamed,

but that with all boldness,

as always,

so now also

Christ shall be magnified

in my body,

whether it be by life,

or by death.” Philippians 1:14-20

Paul can rejoice, though he is in prison for preaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ, glad that his fellow believers in Philippi are being encouraged and growing in grace despite his suffering (and theirs) for the Gospel of Jesus! He also reminds them that the gospel has not only genuine followers, but also detractors—yet God is still in charge!

Paul reminds them and us that we can have total confidence in truth, because God is ever at work in “all things” and that he was assured that “whether in pretence, or in truth, Christ is preached”, and we can trust our God to glorify HIS Son! At the same time, I pray that we will grasp the confidence that Paul is sharing with us, that we can depend on our God to accomplish HIS purpose, even when we don’t understand what is going on as we work and testify for HIM! Paul reiterates His confidence in the faithfulness of God, the Philippians, and even shares his confidence that God will deliver him (“my salvation”=his salvation from prison not from sin!) through their prayers for him. All of this context leads to verse 21 that we started with—that Paul is confident in God’s plan for him whether he lives or dies—that is why he could proclaim that “to me to live, is Christ”, and while he would love to continue his ministry for Jesus in the flesh—he longs to be with Jesus—that is “gain”!!! Yet Paul was willing to do whatever God had for him to do, for as long as God saw fit for him to help others! How do we assess things—by God’s standard or our own? Are we serving God? Others? Or self? Can we take Paul’s words for our own?

For to me

to live

is Christ,

and to die

is gain.

22 But if I live in the flesh,

this is the fruit of my labour:

yet what I shall choose

I wot not.

23 For I am in a strait betwixt two,

having a desire to depart,

and to be with Christ;

which is far better:

24 Nevertheless to abide in the flesh

is more needful for you.” Philippians 1:21-24

This is the same principle that Paul shared with the Galatians in a little different way! To be where God wants us to be, doing what God wants us to do—for HIS glory, and the good of others as well as ourselves—the crucified life:

I am crucified with Christ:

nevertheless I live;

yet not I,

but Christ liveth in me:

and the life which I now live

in the flesh

I live by the faith

       of the Son of God,

who loved me,

and gave himself for me.” Galatians 2:20 

So as we consider these things, may we truly say that “to me” to lives is Jesus ‘living in me’? It is the prayer of my heart—that I can truly be a reflection of Jesus to those God places in my path, and you and I/we can only accomplish that as we “walk in the Spirit and “abide” in Jesus.

Abide in me,

and I in you.

As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself,

except it abide in the vine;

no more can ye,

except ye abide in me.

5 I am the vine,

ye are the branches:

He that abideth in me,

and I in him,

the same bringeth forth much fruit:

for without me

ye can do nothing.” John 15:4-5

It’s all about leaning to ‘abide’ in HIM and ‘walk’ in the power and direction of His Holy Spirit, so that we can produce real fruit that brings Him glory—because it is all:

For of him,

and through him,

and to him,

are all things:

to whom be glory

for ever. Amen.” Romans 11:36

We need a mindset focused on pursuing God, continually desiring to hear “well done, thou good and faithful servant”, but the choice is ours. We choose the building materials of our life, and Paul describes the difference in his letter to the Corinthians. Paul had laid a foundation of truth when he shared the Gospel of Jesus with them—the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus, for our sin (See 1 Corinthians 15:1-7)–and we can only build on that foundation—the only foundation, Jesus—“the way….the truth….the life…” for “no man cometh unto the Father, but by me”—there is only One Way! When we belong to Jesus we can choose to yield to His Spirit’s work and leading in us or we can try to “wing it” in our own strength and will—a blueprint for trouble—the difference between the precious building materials that Paul calls ‘gold, silver and precious stones’ and the futility of earthly things of ‘wood, hay and stubble’! What will you choose?

According to the grace of God

which is given unto me,

as a wise masterbuilder,

I have laid the foundation,

and another buildeth thereon.

But let every man take heed

how he buildeth thereupon.

11 For other foundation

can no man lay

than that is laid,

which is Jesus Christ.

12 Now if any man build upon this foundation

gold,

silver,

precious stones,

wood,

hay,

stubble;

13 Every man’s work shall be made manifest:

for the day shall declare it,

because it shall be revealed by fire;

and the fire shall try every man’s work

of what sort it is.

14 If any man’s work abide

which he hath built thereupon,

he shall receive a reward.

15 If any man’s work shall be burned,

he shall suffer loss:

but he himself shall be saved;

yet so as by fire.

16 Know ye not that ye are the temple of God,

and that the Spirit of God

dwelleth in you?”   1 Corinthians 3:10-16

We can please God only when we do things His way, with His provision—only God can create ‘gold, silver and precious stones’—the are material elements of creation. On the other hand we can grow the basics materials of ‘wood, hay and stubble’—but the fire is the test. The things of God will pass through the fire; the other will leave only a pile of ashes!!! May we follow the example of our Savior and seek to do God’s work, God’s way!

Jesus saith unto them,

My meat is to do the will of him

that sent me,

and to finish his work.” John 4:34

And to know God’s will and way we must pursue and long for His Words—even the small ones, if not especially the small ones! Paul faced these issues many years ago, yet they are still “alive and well” in our culture today. We must choose each day whether we will go His way or not! We must read all the words—big and small—and apply them to our lives, not just pick and choose to go our own way, justifying our disobedient choices as we go!

This I say then,

Walk in the Spirit,

and ye shall not fulfil

the lust of the flesh…….

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is

love,

joy,

peace,

longsuffering,

gentleness,

goodness,

faith,

23 Meekness,

temperance:

against such there is no law.

24 And they that are Christ’s

have crucified the flesh

with the affections

and lusts.

25 If we live in the Spirit,

let us also walk in the Spirit.

26 Let us not be desirous of

vain glory,

provoking one another,

envying one another.”   Galatians 5:16, 22-26

Did you notice that little word, “if”? If we “live in the Spirit” we ought to “walk in the Spirit”, rather than to pursue “vain glory”, or to be “provoking”, or “envying one another”! Our “walk” needs to match our “talk”, as we sometimes hear in the modern proverb, “You may talk the talk, but do you walk the walk?” Many around us today are busy talking in a way that is provocative, full of envy and vain glory—self seeking seems to be the order of the day, rather than selfless pursuit of God’s purposes—may we ever choose Jesus’ way!

Simply put, I pray that we will keep our focus on our Lord Jesus, pursuing His pleasure not our own—not missing the little things because we’re in a hurry, or just don’t want to be bothered by the truth—feasting on His words, all of them! Glorying in Jesus not anything else!

But God forbid that I should glory,

save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ,

by whom the world is crucified unto me,

and I unto the world.” Galatians 6:14

May we ever keep our focus on the cross, and the Savior who gave Himself for us there, growing more and more into HIS image. Looking to HIM in all things.

Looking unto Jesus

the author

and finisher

of our faith;

who for the joy that was set before him

endured the cross,

despising the shame,

and is set down

at the right hand

of the throne of God.”   Hebrews 12:2

May we join the faithful mentioned in Hebrews 11, and as the gospel song says, “May all who come behind us find us faithful” (Find Us Faithful, by John Mohr), remembering that God is ever at work in us all the time—

in every way—         in every situation—

in every crisis—       in every triumph—

for our good and His glory—and God never says “oops”!

Amen and Amen!!!

Not I But HIM!!! Bible Ballistics: BBs #483

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Bible Ballistics: BBs #483 Not I But HIM!!!

 

But God forbid that I should glory,

save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ,

by whom the world is crucified

unto me,

and I

unto the world.”   Galatians 6:14

We talked last time about “surveyors”—keeping our eyes on Jesus—the prize that Paul referred to in his letter to the Philippians.

Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do,

forgetting those things which are behind,

and reaching forth

unto those things which are before,

14 I press toward the mark

for the prize

of the high calling of God

in Christ Jesus.”   Philippians 3:14 

Oh that we could understand the import of walking with Jesus—totally pressing toward HIS “mark”—totally desiring the “prize”, which is Jesus Himself. Oh, if we could stop being satisfied with that which is fleeting and pursue that which is eternal. It’s what Jesus expects us to do!

Lay not up for yourselves treasures

upon earth,

where moth

and rust

doth corrupt,

and where thieves

break through

and steal:

20 But lay up for yourselves treasures

in heaven,

where neither moth

nor rust

doth corrupt,

and where thieves

do not break through

nor steal:

21 For where your treasure is,

there will your heart be also.”     Matthew 6:19-21

So my simple question for today is, “Where is your treasure?” Have we bought into the modern cultural idea that “I” am the treasure and the world revolves around me? Or have we recognized the truth that only Jesus can satisfy the soul, the heart and the fulness of who God created us to be? ONLY JESUS! And He cares for us—HE gave Himself that we might have “abundant life” IN Him!

Fear thou not;

for I am with thee:

be not dismayed;

for I am thy God:

I will strengthen thee;

yea, I will help thee;

yea, I will uphold thee

with the right hand of my righteousness.”    Isaiah 41:10

He will uphold me because I am HIS own, but I must remember something too:

What? know ye not

that your body

is the temple

of the Holy Ghost

which is in you,

which ye have of God,

and ye are not your own?

20 For ye are bought with a price:

therefore glorify God

in your body,

and in your spirit,

which are God’s.”   1 Corinthians 6:19-20

There’s an old song by George W. Robinson, called ‘I Am His, And He Is Mine‘, and the last line of each verse says, “I am His and He is mine”! Oh that we could remember that as we go through each day, “ye are not your own….. ye are bought with a price…… therefore glorify God”! I fear that we live in a world that would rather sing:

“To ‘me’ be the glory—

  Great things ‘I’ have done—

  So love ‘I’ myself that God calls me ‘sun’—

All this because ‘I’ believe that–

 ‘I’ am the center of the universe

To ‘Me’! (and everyone else)”

A sad commentary that grabbed my heart just this morning as I was pondering what to share with you today, may we look up and pursue our Lord not self-aggrandizement! (Look it up!)

Boast not thyself of to morrow;

for thou knowest not

what a day may bring forth.

2 Let another man praise thee,

and not thine own mouth;

a stranger,

and not thine own lips.” Proverbs 27:1-2

All I can say to that is, Amen and Amen!!!