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Happy New Year ~ 2018

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Bible Studies

God Gives ~

God Gives...2014

 

Every day God Gives of His wisdom and knowledge and brings understanding to our daily life.  Do we spend time to hear him as he tenderly speaks to our spirit, mind and hearts?  Our faith is strengthened by spending time with Him.  It doesn’t need to be complicated or ceremonious.  It doesn’t require you to be super smart or super spiritual.  But it does need one very special component.  It requires you, just as you are…because He loves us all the same.

My prayer is that this series will bring you closer to the Lord and knowing his clear wisdom in answering some of life’s difficult questions and demands.  He knows when the weight of what burdens you requires more than you can give emotionally, physically and spiritually – it is overwhelming.  This is where God meets you and takes you under His care, you can then give it all to Him.  Begin to release those things that weigh you down and experience all that God has to Give into your life.  It will always be exceeding and abundantly more than your expectations could imagine.  Let God Give to you all that he has planned for your day and it will begin to make your tomorrow better.  Talk to him in prayer or just in your heart.

I pray that if you don’t know Christ Jesus, you may personally come to accept Him in your heart as your savior and Lord.  He will forgive your sins and remember them no more.  You will be a new creation in Him.  Spend this time to get to know Him.  Get a bible and read his word.  Start in the New Testiment  and read about His gospel.   You will discover the verse in John 3:16, were of those things that God Gives to us is salvation through the gift of His only Son, JESUS.  His life teaches us how to cope in an unforgiving world.  His life given for us, brings us reconciliation and eternal life with the Heavenly Father.  This is the greatest of all God Gives: it is love; because in His unfailing Love is the power of eternal life.

God's Grace is Sufficient 8.23.15

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Simon the Wizard

My Devotion: Acts 8:4-25.  God Bless you ~ Zoey

Ancient Sorcerers

 

 

Simon the Wizard

8:4 Forced to leave home base, the followers of Jesus all became missionaries. Wherever they were scattered, they preached the Message about Jesus. Going down to a Samaritan city, Philip proclaimed the Message of the Messiah. When the people heard what he had to say and saw the miracles, the clear signs of God’s action, they hung on his every word. Many who could neither stand nor walk were healed that day. The evil spirits protested loudly as they were sent on their way. And what joy in the city!

9-11 Previous to Philip’s arrival, a certain Simon had practiced magic in the city, posing as a famous man and dazzling all the Samaritans with his wizardry. He had them all, from little children to old men, eating out of his hand. They all thought he had supernatural powers, and called him “the Great Wizard.” He had been around a long time and everyone was more or less in awe of him.

Prayer:

Father God you are immutable. You are faithful and true, mighty and sure.  Impostors – like Simon the Sorcerer, may come and go.  But you, our Father, will watch over your Living Word; it will do your good pleasure and it will not return void.  For in your wisdom, sent the Apostle Philip to remind the Samaritans not to listen to Simon the magician, as we read in this passage.

 

12-13 But when Philip came to town announcing the news of God’s kingdom and proclaiming the name of Jesus Christ, they forgot Simon and were baptized, becoming believers right and left! Even Simon himself believed and was baptized. From that moment he was like Philip’s shadow, so fascinated with all the God-signs and miracles that he wouldn’t leave Philip’s side.

Prayer:

I thank you for those presently, who are going out into all the world preaching the Message of the Messiah.  Yes, this same present evil seen in the world today is no different as was in this passage telling of Simon the Magician. This man had believed and been baptized hoping to gain the supernatural power of the Holy Spirit. Foolishly thinking he could be “like” Philip and then once again, manipulate the people in Samaria to believe that he was greater than the Apostles sent by your Son, Jesus the Risen Savior of the world.

 

14-17 When the apostles in Jerusalem received the report that Samaria had accepted God’s Message, they sent Peter and John down to pray for them to receive the Holy Spirit. Up to this point they had only been baptized in the name of the Master Jesus; the Holy Spirit hadn’t yet fallen on them. Then the apostles laid their hands on them and they did receive the Holy Spirit.

Prayer:

Father God, your timing is perfect.  The Holy Spirit had not fallen upon the people until the apostles Peter and John had arrived from Jerusalem.  You were faithful to Philip, so that he would have the support of Peter and John.  Samaria was and still is so very dear to your heart, Lord.

 

18-19 When Simon saw that the apostles by merely laying on hands conferred the Spirit, he pulled out his money, excited, and said, “Sell me your secret! Show me how you did that! How much do you want? Name your price!”

20-23 Peter said, “To hell with your money! And you along with it. Why, that’s unthinkable—trying to buy God’s gift! You’ll never be part of what God is doing by striking bargains and offering bribes. Change your ways—and now! Ask the Master to forgive you for trying to use God to make money. I can see this is an old habit with you; you reek with money-lust.”

 

Prayer:

Father God, the price that your Son paid on the Cross as our Messiah is not measured in silver or gold. It is not a commodity to be sold or bought. It is an eternal gift – freely given and it is forever only yours to give.  Here we read in your Word that Simon’s deceptive manipulation was for monetary gain and power. Praise you, God, for you are NOT for sale! Nor is Your Holy Spirit deceived.  Help us to have the same bold conviction as the Apostle Peter did to rebuke those who have ill intentions and holding hidden selfish agendas.  Give us the wisdom, the transparency and unity in the Holy Spirit to walk out our salvation before you, Lord.  Amen.

 

24 “Oh!” said Simon, “pray for me! Pray to the Master that nothing like that will ever happen to me!”

25 And with that, the apostles were on their way, continuing to witness and spread the Message of God’s salvation, preaching in every Samaritan town they passed through on their return to Jerusalem.

[The Message translation]

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Walking Worthy of God

Walking Worthy of God

Devotional by Zoey 2017

Jesus Prays for All Believers

John 17:20-26

20 “My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, 

21 that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you.

My Comment: To imagine on a lone evening as Jesus knelt to pray this to his Father, it would reach across the lines of time to future generations yet to be lived.  Even more so, we were in his heart before we were even a twinkle in our mother’s eye, so to speak.  He prayed for all to be one, as he and the Father are one. Can we have the same prayer for those in our life? To be one; in unity as the body of Christ Jesus. Does our character reflect his character to the Father?  And in the same line of thought, does our character reflect Jesus’ love through us to others.  Being one is to be full of Jesus with the Father in one Spirit. 

May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me.

22 I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one—

 23 I in them and you in me—so that they may be brought to complete unity.

Then the world will know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.”

My comment: There is a two-fold gain in Jesus prayer for the believer. The first is to preach the message that God so loved the WORLD he sent his son Jesus. The second is that those who believe are promised to have life eternal in His kingdom in heaven.

24 “Father, I want those you have given me to be with me where I am, and to see my glory, the glory you have given me because you loved me before the creation of the world.

My Comment: The promise has been kept.  At his crucifixion, Jesus turned to the thief (alongside him) who confessed belief in Jesus as the son of God and said “today, you will be with me in paradise.”  We are brought to complete unity on earth as it is in heaven by the Father’s good will towards those who are found in his son, Jesus.  Each believer in Christ Jesus will see the glory of Jesus’ kingdom given him by his Father God. 

25 “Righteous Father, though the world does not know you, I know you, and they know that you have sent me.

 26 I have made you[e] known to them, and will continue to make you known in order that the love you have for me may be in them and that I myself may be in them.”

My Comment: No greater love has been exampled in human history than the life and death of Jesus Christ.  None in any religion or belief systems throughout civilization can make the same claim as Jesus.  He said to his disciples that they would be hated because of his name, Jesus. He said this to prepare them.  It is that same name that also brought each of his Apostles to their greatest achievements in preaching the gospel and then to the ultimate reward…to stand in the presence of Jesus in his heavenly kingdom… reunited in Paradise.  Complete unity Crowned in Glory.  What love he gave.  What hope we who believe to hold.

~My prayer:

We are given all we need to live today, if we seek your kingdom first, Lord.  We have what we ask for in your Name, Jesus, for your word is truth and life.  Temper us with humility and the understanding to see where you are providing in our daily walk.  Let us find the satisfaction in all things good and the fullness of joy abundantly.

Amen

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The Language of Promise by Graham Cooke ~Conclusion

Graham Cooke

~CONCLUSION~

The sad truth about many longtime Christians is that they
have never understood the magnitude of God’s love. Some have
served Him for decades and not known His passion for them.
But I believe that He is going to make up for that lost time. We
need to receive this love with child-like simplicity, not overanalyzing
it or trying to strive for it.
God is going to come to us in this next season of time and
His love will almost be beyond our capacity to bear. It will be
the stuff of dreams, an unimaginable, monumental, incredible,
astonishing, marvelous, outrageous love. This language will
change the way you think about everything. God’s dream for
us is that we would be immersed in the majesty of everything
He feels for us.
His love will overwhelm us, leading us past logic, reason,
intellect, and into a place where our hearts will be touched as
they have never been touched before. This is a season of wonder
for us, and we will have to learn to live like a much-loved child.
Our journey now is to cultivate an expectancy for—and
interpret everything in—the love of God. God wants to root
and ground us in His love so deeply that we live there for the
rest of our days. This love will cause us to grow to be the men
and women God most wants us to be.
It’s exciting to think of how radically this love will change
our lives. We will experience the breadth, length, height, and
depth of God’s love for us. His language will wash over us, again
and again.
Love God and love our neighbor: it is our destiny and our
honour.

 

My Comment: Graham’s conclusion is profound.  It is encapsulated for me beautifully in his closing statements.  I agree that we need a “new season” were it is God who comes to us with wonder to fill our hearts… in the same manner as He gave Jesus to the world on that glorious night back in Bethlehem so many centuries ago.  His promises will bring the expectancy to fruition , as it was in the old testament- where the promise of a Messiah was given and when Jesus was born ~ so it fulfilled the scriptures.  

We need to receive this love with child-like simplicity, not overana­lyzing it or trying to strive for it.

I will hold fast the grace of God’s word and nothing else will be cultivated in my life testimony.  I will celebrate each day because I am assured through these promises that Christ Jesus is the keeper of my soul and by Him all things remain sure and true.  This is our season of wonder-filled hope, peace and love.  In His JOY be BLESSED.

Revelation 22:

vs 20 He who testifies to these things says, “Surely I am coming quickly.”

Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus!

21 The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen.

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The Language of Promise by Graham Cooke ~ Study Week 19

Graham Cooke: pgs. 42-46

Joshua 1.9

INHERITING THE PROMISE

And we desire that each one of you show the same diligence
so as to realize the full assurance of hope until the end, so
that you will not be sluggish, but imitators of those who
through faith and patience inherit the promises. For when
God made the promise to Abraham, since He could swear by
no one greater, He swore by Himself, saying, “I WILL SURELY
BLESS YOU, AND I WILL SURELY MULTIPLY YOU.” And so, having
patiently waited, he obtained the promise.
For men swear by one greater than themselves, and with
them an oath given as confirmation is an end of every dispute.
“IF YOU CONCENTRATE ON
FINDING WHATEVER IS GOOD
IN EVERY SITUATION, YOU WILL
DISCOVER THAT YOUR LIFE
WILL SUDDENLY BE FILLED
WITH GRATITUDE, A FEELING
THAT NURTURES THE SOUL.”
RABBI HAROLD KUSHNER

In the same way God, desiring even more to
show to the heirs of the promise the unchangeableness
of His purpose, interposed with an oath, so that by two
unchangeable things in which it is impossible for God to
lie, we who have taken refuge would have strong encouragement
to take hold of the hope set before us. This hope
we have as an anchor of the soul, a hope both sure and
steadfast and one which enters within the veil, where
Jesus has entered as a forerunner for us, having become a
high priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek.
(Hebrews 6:11-20 NASB)
At the heart of all God’s dealings with us, is the issue of
our inheritance in Christ. We are the Beloved of the Father, the
Bride of Christ, People of the Spirit.
Not returning evil for evil or insult for insult, but giving a
blessing instead; for you were called for the very purpose
that you might inherit a blessing.
(1 Peter 3:9 NASB)
We are called to inherit. It is what we demonstrate to the
Earth. We are people of promise. We have hope, an inheritance
and a language in which we communicate our confidence in the
Father. That language we learn from Heaven. The Holy Spirit
communicates the heart of the Father in such a powerful way
that we are radically changed by the conversation and the content.
We then communicate to others in exactly the way that
it was delivered to our heart.
To inherit we need two priceless things which we receive
from God in the process of our circumstances. These are faith
and patience. This is a wonderful contrast that is only learned
through process. Process is a series of steps designed to achieve
a particular goal or learning objective.
Faith speaks about immediacy and patience refers to eventuality.
Most Christians want the magic Midas touch of instantaneous
receiving from the Lord. Faith is a gift to be received but
also a disciplined confidence that must be learned. We cannot
go through life always requiring a gift of faith. God gives those
as He wills. He wants us to learn how to grow faith, increase in
it and walk by it. For this to occur we must attach patience to
our faith so that we walk on the path that God has provided.
Circumstances are often so intense that they seem to last for
ages. Primarily this is because we face them in our emotion
rather than our will. The will is the vehicle for faith to attain
the will of God.
The promise is secure. God does not lie. The issue is always
process. The path of God (process) is always about increasing
our confidence, enlarging expectation, learning to stand in
peace, being stretched in faith and being schooled in how to
see God and hold onto Him. His word is the anchor point for
process to be attained.
What is the gap between the promise and the provision
for you in your current situation? What is the process that is
designed to fit that space? What is the pathway that God has
chosen for you to develop greater confidence as well as receive
the provision? Meditate on these things and activate your will
towards the Lord. Learn what your current process is all about
and how you can cooperate with the Spirit. This is walking by
faith.
Faith is confident expectation, patience is calmness and
composure. The two combined produce a fortitude and consistency.
There is a serene persistence that allows us to keep God
in our sights and rejoice in Him. Serene persistence is anathema
to doubt, fear and unbelief.
God is unchanging and trustworthy, so is His word. When
promising Abraham a son, the Father took an oath in His own
name. The oath and God’s name are the same. God’s name and
His nature are equally the same. Because of Who He is, our
confident expectation (hope) is anchored in His personality.
His promises emanate from behind the curtain i.e. the division
that separates the Holy Place from the Most Holy Place.
This is the place Jesus occupies as our High Priest. He is in God’s
Presence at all times, continuously interceding for us to be all
that the Father intends.
The promise may be fulfilled immediately because the Lord
may be showing you how to handle a gift of faith. The promise
will always be fulfilled eventually through the process of faith.
Give yourself to the Father of lights, from whom every gift
is given (James 1:17). He is the Unchanging One. We see Him
best when we are single minded (focused) about His goodness.
Double-minded people are always disappointed and eventually
disinherit themselves.
Process is the key to walking by faith. Actively combining
your faith with patience gives a guarantee of inheritance. Serene
persistence…there is nothing more precious in a faith lifestyle.

 

In the same way God, desiring even more to show to the heirs of the promise the unchangeableness of His purpose, interposed with an oath, so that by two unchangeable things in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have taken refuge would have strong encour­agement to take hold of the hope set before us. This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, a hope both sure and steadfast and one which enters within the veil, where Jesus has entered as a forerunner for us, having become a high priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek. (Hebrews 6:11-20 NASB)      My Comment:  There is so much more to the Christian lifestyle that develops after we find salvation and forgiveness.  It is our beginning as a new creation, meaning the old sinner is gone and the heir of the promise is before us.  Our journey begins with the Holy Spirit as our guide.  Each step of faith measures our spiritual growth and maturity.  Something beautiful begins as we watch God developing our story in a Christ Centered Faith. We read in scripture God desires for each believer to be heirs with His Son, Jesus.  What a comfort to know we have Jesus as our high priest interceding on our behalf.  These are the treasures of our inheritance; hope that anchors our soul, the promise of purpose, strong encouragement and God’s oath which is steadfast and sure.  When we are instant in prayer, focused on his word– we are engaged and He is present with us.  His Holy Spirit will comfort, guide in truth and speak the language of Heaven to our hearts, so in turn, we may speak the same to someone who needs to hear of the promise of His unchangeable Love.

 

This section speaks on a topic that is very dear to my heart – inheriting the promise.  If I could slow down the speed of this section like a phonograph, in order to absorb the rich keys of wisdom, it would be to 33 1/3RPM, which (as I realize) is ironically around the age of Jesus when his life came to the fullness of inheriting the promise from His Father.  ~