I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith: henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day; and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing. (2 Timothy 4:7-8)
This is yet another gem in the treasure house of the holy Scriptures. Its brilliance illuminates truths that are hard to be found by this world's standards. Here the spirit of the living word instructs all God's favorite children to fight for their faith. Keep all its precepts, doctrine and statutes. The world fights for, the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life. (1 John 2:16) Our fight is to please God; for the just shall live by faith. (Habakkuk 2:4). If you do this willingly, to the end of your life, a crown of righteousness will be reserved for you. This crown will be awarded on judgment day; to these words, "Well done, thou good and faithful servant." (Matthew 25:21)
The key that unlocks the whole thing is love! The rule of thumb is Jesus! When Jesus asked Peter, "lovest thou me more than these?" (John 21:15) I have to ask myself, how much do I really love Jesus? Enough to have him appear in every area of my present life? See what I mean. You be the judge. Praise the Lord!
But the path of the just is as the shining light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day. (Proverb 4:18)
Here we have another proverb just chocked full of the breath of God's word. First, we are enlightened once again to the fact that it's the spirit of just men made perfect (Hebrews 12:23). Not every lifestyle will do. Yet, I see a deeper expression in this proverb, light! Just think that in the hereafter, paradise, heaven, the kingdom of God; there will be no more night (Revelation 22:5). No need for a flashlight or even the sun. Almighty God, our father, will be the light. Can you imagine that?
Some 38 years ago while traveling around the country doing God service; I met a young man named Todd. He was attracted to the way Jesus ministered through me; my lifestyle in general. He was seeing the light. Upon making a request to come and stay with me, I realized that he was seeking God's help. I agreed to his request.
Some days later, he arrived at my door. Realizing he had just journeyed over 1000 miles, my warmest greetings were easily conveyed. About two days had gone by, when the Lord revealed to me that I was to lay hands on him and pray. To my surprise as I laid hands on my wide eyed excited houseguest; I could only see darkness. We are talking dark darkness! Nothing was revealed to me by Jesus. So I shared exactly what I was seeing. Todd's face was gripped with conviction! Shaking his head in a yes mode, he said, "I have to leave but I will be back." That day he flew back to his home. Corrected some deep sins in his life and immediately returned. I thought what commitment. Within a week while staying in my home, Todd had a visitation from heaven; it was a visitation of light!
Yes, beloved, in him there is no darkness at all. Want more light? Just make more room. Praise the Lord!
Notwithstanding in this rejoice not, that the spirits are subject unto you; but rather rejoice, because your names are written in heaven. (Luke 10:20)
This is a repeat of Wednesday's Bible study. Please bare with me; for here is a Scripture so chocked full with comfort, spiritual health, wisdom and fatherly guidance, that only the great shepherd himself could bring it to life. We have a scene where 70 hand chosen men were returning from their battlefield experiences. They had seen miracles: sicknesses healed, all manner of physical and spiritual conditions altered right before their eyes. They had seen these partitions granted in the past by the hands of Jesus, but now God was doing them through their hands. Granting power and authority through the name of Jesus. It's no wonder they were excited as they focused on these events.
Jesus knew one day each and every one of these miracle workers would leave their earthly existence and stand before none other than himself for judgment. Jesus knew also that there is great joy when the powers of darkness are overcome by God's mercies. He also knew that it was so easy to lose focus.
Always remember the greatest joy for you and I will be these words, "Well done my faithful servant, enter into the joy of the Lord." Not temporal joy, but eternal! Not because of the miracles that were done, but because your name is written in heaven. Thank you Jesus! Praise the Lord!
For we must needs die, and are as water spilt on the ground, which cannot be gathered up again; neither doth God respect any person; yet doth he devise means, that his banished be not expelled from him. (2 Samuel 14:14)
I could spend a month of Sundays enjoying the riches of wisdom embedded in this Scripture; to find myself only beginning to explore its treasuries.
The Holy Spirit introduced myself to this Scripture some 32 years ago. I was preparing to write a letter to the great man of God, DGS Dhinakaran. His daughter had just been involved in an auto accident. As a result of this event, she went home to be with the Lord Jesus. He also had been injured in the same accident, along with his wife Stella. Unable to know what to write, I went into compassionate prayer for him and his family. Then like the sweet song sung every morning, as the day star arises to illuminate the earth, Jesus brought me to this Scripture. Let's take a look and see the mercies of it all.
First, Father God has devised a means for everyone to leave their earthly tabernacle and return to him. God describes existence here as being banished from our true habitation. This brings in the reality that we must all take this journey when he said, "neither doth God respect any person." Finally, Father God gives the description, "as water spilt on the ground." We can see it for a moment; then it disappears into the soil; to take life somewhere else. Perhaps in our drinking water, or the great oceans of the world or maybe a plant we most desire. Father God in his most merciful way has once again revealed his son Jesus Christ!
In the trading of our temporal life in this world for eternal life with him; we will have completed the cycle and the purpose for our created existence. Praise the Lord!
Dr. Thomas Snyder