OUR PATTERN FOR PRAYER!

“Pray, then, in this way…”  Matthew 6:9a

Just as a fountain never rises higher than its head, so a Christian never rises any higher than his or her prayer life!  Many years ago, S. D. Gordon in his book, Quiet Talks on Prayer, wrote, “A Christian has much to do after he has prayed, but he is not ready to do anything until he has prayed!”  The first time our Lord Jesus taught on the subject of prayer in His earthly ministry was in a part of what has become known as The Sermon on the Mount.  Sometime this portion is referred to as The Lord’s Prayer.  It is well to look at it as a model for a life of prayer, rather than an individual prayer.

The Lord not only instructs us how to pray, but first and foremost to be about praying!  Not if we pray, but when we pray!  Then He teaches us that the twofold purpose for prayer is first for the glory of our heavenly Father (vv 9b-10), and secondly for the good of His earthly family (vv 11-13).  Notice that Jesus introduces the term Father.  This is revolutionary!  In the Old Testament that term is not used.  God is referred to as holy, high and exalted.  Now Jesus tells us to understand that God is also our Father!  Prayer is primarily for obtaining something for our Father.  First of all reverence (Hallowed, revered, respected, feared).  Secondly, the advancing of His Kingdom.  As it was always Jesus’s ambition, so it is to be ours!  Thirdly, we should seek the will of our Father in heaven be done on the earth.  That brings up an interesting aspect…The will of God is always being done in heaven!  The idea is that when we pray about something, or someone, we need to find out what is happening in heaven in relation to that person, or situation, and pray that the heavenly Will will be done here on earth!

Prayer is secondarily for the good of the Father’s family.  Firstly, our provision (v 11). Secondly, our pardon (v 12).  Also, note the relation between our forgiving others, and the Lord forgiving us (vv 14-15).  It is possible to be in relation to God by faith in Christ, but be out of fellowship with him by refusing to forgive as we have been forgiven!  Thirdly, our protection (v 13).  Prayer is the Lord’s means whereby we as God’s children seek our heavenly Father’s glory and His family’s good.

I am reminded of a story I once read about ancient Rome.  After a great victory that was significant to Rome, there was a great celebration in the city, known as a Triumph.  When the battle was close to the city, the Emperor went to the battlefield to accept the surrender of the enemy.  Then there was a parade in the city of Rome with the Emperor riding on a gold chariot pulled by two white horses.  Surrounding the chariot was the Praetorian Guard, authorized to guard the Emperor up to cost of their personal lives.  As the parade passed through the city, suddenly a young boy broke from the crowd approaching the Emperor’s chariot.  The nearest guard drew his sword, telling the boy not to approach the Emperor.  The boy replied, “He’s your Emperor; He’s my Father!”  Jesus Christ is the Emperor of all the universe, and if you have put your faith in Him as Savior and Lord, God is your Father as well!  If you have not, you can put your faith in Christ right now!

Jon Moore

POWER OF THE TONGUE!

“No one can tame the tongue; it is a restless evil and full of deadly poison.  With it we bless our Lord and Father, and with it we curse (revile) men, who have been made in the likeness of God; From the same mouth come both blessing and cursing.  My brethren, these things ought not to be this way.”  James 3:8-10 NASB

One of God’s greatest gifts to mankind is the gift of speech.  With it we pray, sing praises to the Lord, teach and preach the Bible and share the gospel message with those who are without Christ!  Yet, the Bible teaches, and our personal experience confirms, that the most difficult member of our body to control is the tongue!  One of the most practical books in the New Testament is the book of James.  In chapter 3:1-12 James points out three distinct powers of the tongue.  One is the power of direction.  He uses two analogies to illustrate (vv2-4).  First is the horse (on which usually one rides) into which’s mouth a “bit” is placed.  The pulling on the bit to one side or the other determines which way the horse turns.  The second analogy is that of a great ship (on which many usually ride).  As the ship’s rudder is turned the ship turns that direction.  The application is our tongue can not only dictate the direction of our personal life, but also have an influence on others as well!

The second power of one’s tongue is that of destruction!  Once again, James uses analogies to make his point (vv5-8). One is that of a grass fire.  Grass fires can be both wild and unruly.  One small match can unleash a magnitude of destruction, as well as getting quickly “out of hand”!  And all kinds of animals can be tamed by man, but not so the tongue!  Unfortunately, the rest of our body seems to follow wherever our tongue leads!  The tongue has the power to destroy a person, a family or a church.  No worse example can be found than that of the infamous Adolph Hitler.  He wrote an autobiography tens of thousands of words long of his life, entitled “Mein Kampf.”  It has been noted by researchers that for every word in his autobiography, 125 people were killed in World War II!

Finally, the third power of the tongue is the power of distortion, perhaps the most sinister and subtle of its powers.  If we are not watchful, even believers can be drawn into confessions and conclusions that are clearly outside of Truth (vv9-12)!  In such a place we both bless our Lord and Father, while at the same time revile men who have been made in the likeness of God!  Rightly, James exclaims, “These things ought not to be this way!”  When interviewed by Robert Frost concerning the Watergate break-in and the recorded tapes of President Nixon’s x-rated comments, the reverend Dr. Billy Graham stated, “The words were in his heart, or they never would have come from his lips!”  Jesus said, “Out of the abundance of the heart a man speaks.” (Matthew 12:34)

As Christians, we need to make it our business to spend more time with those who encourage us in the things of God and less time with those who criticize, condemn and divide!

Jon Moore

THANKING GOD IN TROUBLED TIMES!

“Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance.  And let endurance have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.”  James 1:2-4

Let me be clear!  The Thanksgiving/Christmas season is my favorite time of the year.  I am grateful that I live in a country where our forefathers expressed there thanksgiving to God for His ongoing blessings, and though it may seem hard to believe today, elected officials of a previous day voted to make Thanksgiving Day a national holiday!  However, there likely would be some today that would say, ‘We live in a different time, under different (difficult) circumstances.”’  What about the frustrations, anger, hostile words and actions; the increasing attack against Christianity and the Church?  The answer to our question, and the counsel for Believers in terms of our response is clearly to be found in God’s Word!  James under the guidance of the Holy Spirit gives us wise counsel in James 1:2-4.

He teaches us a systematic method of response in verse 2.  The Greek word translated consider is a bookkeeping term.  When we encounter circumstances that test our faith in God’s keeping, we should open our spiritual journal and enter that experience under the column titled “Joy”!  Note this will not be “if” these times come, but “when” they come.  The bottom line is that the Believer’s thanksgiving is not dependent on favorable circumstances, but by a free choice (Not a natural response, but a spiritual response)!

Be sure to recognize that this response is not just “hocus-pocus!”  It is affirmed by eternal Truths in verse 3.  The first Truth is essential.  God is in control of our situations!  One of the most mis-quoted, misunderstood verses in the bible is Romans 8:28.  This verse does NOT say, “all things are good.”  All things that happen in life are not good, but the verse says, “God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.”  The question in some minds would be, ‘Why does the Lord do things this way?’  Verse 3 gives the answer.  The Lord is building character in the life of His children using adversity.  He knows that we will need the quality of “endurance” in us if we are to finish the course.  Christian, do you have confidence in God?  You can only be thankful in the midst of trials IF you have complete confidence in God!

The Bible clearly reveals God as the God of order from Genesis to Revelation.  In verse 4 He says “let” endurance have its perfect result.  The Greek word translated perfect here means ended.  Don’t focus on the earthly problem, but God’s eternal purpose!  Of course the Lord wants an ended work so He can have a “perfect” worker.  The second time the word perfect is used, it is translated from the Greek as “whole”!  This is what God is after in each of His children.

Consider this bible Truth, “Jesus is Lord!”  If this true, and it is, He is in control of the so-called good, and the so-called bad.  The pleasurable and the painful.  If you have not trusted Christ with your eternity, I encourage you to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and be saved!  If you have trusted Christ for your eternity, trust Him now with your adversity!

Jon Moore

WHY BE FILLED WITH THE HOLY SPIRIT?  (PART TWO)

“When He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth; for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak; and He will disclose to you what is to come.”  John 16:13

 In the first part of this series we pointed out that there is a great deal of misunderstanding about the ministry of the third Person of the Godhead, the Holy Spirit.  Consequently, this has left the door open for erroneous teaching on the subject.  Instead of spending our time criticizing the false teaching, or false teachers, I have chosen to spend the time teaching what the Bible does say about the command to be filled with the Spirit (Ephesians 5:18).  I also pointed out that in the last hours of our Lord’s earthly life, He spent much of His time with His disciples, among other things preparing them for the coming of the Holy Spirit and what His ministry would be to, in and through them.  This ongoing conversation is recorded in chapters 14, 15 and 16 of the gospel of John.  In 14:16-17 Jesus said first that the Spirit would indwell Believers, with us in our loneliness, and in us in our weakness.

 Secondly, our Lord told His followers that the Holy Spirit would instruct Believers.  “The Helper, the Holy Spirit will teach you all things…” (John 14:26a).  All we truly know of the Lord is taught to us by the Spirit, and there are three aspects to this teaching.  He reminds us!  “…and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you” (14:26b).  There are times we don’t need to learn a new truth, but sometimes we need the Holy Spirit to “quicken” our spiritual memory to remember a truth He has already taught us!  The Spirit also refines us!  “When He, the Spirit of truth comes, He will guide you into all the truth” (John 16:13a).  You may ask, “Is that not the same as John 14:26a (see above)?  No!  John 14:26a is inward, and John 16:13a is outward.  One, He teaches us.  Two, He leads us!  One of the “ways” of God is to teach you a truth, then lead you into a life experience that will call on you to exercise that newly discovered truth!  In Psalm 103:7 the psalmist says that God made His ways known to Moses, his acts to the children of Israel.  The people would acknowledge God’s leadership once He acted, but Moses could anticipate how the Lord would act, because He had learned His ways!

 Finally, the Holy Spirit reveals to us.  “He will disclose to you what is to come” (John 16:13b).  In a travelling ministry I have met many of the Lord’s people, and one subject that comes up often is, “What is the Lord going to do about this, or that?  What will He do about this situation in my life?”  One of the best ways to answer questions like that is to put the onus where it belongs!  If you want to know what tomorrow holds for you, pay attention to what the Lord is teaching you today!  He is always preparing us by providing for us.  Every child of His has the privilege of a one to one Teacher to student ratio in the Lord’s classroom!

 Stay in touch for Part Three!

Jon Moore

 

WHY BE FILLED WITH THE HOLY SPIRIT?  (Part One)

“And do not get drunk with wine for that is dissipation, but be filled with the Spirit.”

Ephesians 5:18

“If you love Me, you will keep my commandments.”

John 14:15

“I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may be with you forever; that is the Spirit of Truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it does not see Him or know Him, but you know Him, because He abides with you and will be in you.”

John 14:16-17

 

The decade of the 1960s were years of rebellion!  There was a rebellion against the Vietnam war, the military draft, the sexual standards of the day, and the religious hypocrisy of the previous generation.  Large numbers of young people entered “A search for the Truth,” experimenting with eastern religions and hallucinatory drugs.  Some of these young people came full circle and found salvation through faith in Jesus Christ!  Oftentimes when these new converts tried to return to mainline traditional churches, they were not welcome with their long hair, crumpled clothing and lack of socially acceptable hygiene.  Consequently, false teaching spread, especially about the doctrine of the Holy Spirit!  Sadly, too many preachers spent more time condemning the false teachers than teaching the Bible Truth about the Holy Spirit.  Unfortunately, we see similar things happening today.  Thus, for several sessions we will be examining the Scripture’s answer to the question, “Why does a Christian need to be filled with the Holy Spirit?”

 First and foremost, the Believer needs to be filled with the Spirit, because the Bible commands it!  Ephesians 5:18 is NOT a recommendation, but a requirement!  In the original language it is an imperative!  In John 14:21 Jesus said, “He who has My commandments and keeps them is the one who loves Me!”  In addition to that in the last hours of His earthly life, Jesus withdrew from the crowds to whom He had ministered and spent precious personal time with His disciples.  This ongoing conversation is recorded in John, chapters 14, 15 and 16.  In it Jesus points out three additional reasons why every Believer should be filled with the Holy Spirit, and what that means.

 In John 14:16 Jesus tells his disciples that the Holy Spirit will indwell Believers.  The “Helper” here is also translated “Comforter”, “Advocate” or “Intercessor” in other places in the Bible, but note that He is “another” Helper!  The Greek word translated another means “another like Me!”  The best description of the Holy Spirit is He is another like Jesus Christ!  He goes on to say that He will be with us forever!  How crucial it is to be reminded when we are lonely, that the Spirit is always with us.  In verse 17 we are told He will not only be with us, but He is in us as well.  This is reassuring when we are weak, and how often we rediscover our weaknesses in attempting to obey our Lord, both in worship and service!  Thus, the Holy Spirit is our Divine Helper who makes the impossible possible! 

 

Stay in touch for Part Two!

Jon Moore

 

SERVING IN RESURRECTION POWER-Part Two!

“Elijah took his mantle and folded it together and struck the waters, and they were divided here and there, so that the two of them (Elijah and Elisha) crossed over on dry ground.”

2nd Kings 2:8

In Part One (Scroll down to April 1, 2021) I wrote to you concerning how New Testament Truths are often illustrated in the times, the people, the places and the events of the Old Testament, and such is the case with the subject of serving in resurrection power in the ministry of the prophet Elisha!  In our earlier writing we pointed out the preconditions for thus serving were present in Elisha’s ministry when Elijah threw his mantle on Elisha (1st Kings 19:19). 

Today we want to see how Elisha was then further prepared to serve.  Remember, the mantle still belonged to Elijah.  Elisha had to be prepared for it to be his.  This was accomplished by two ways, testing and trials.  The same will be true for us if we are to serve the Lord in His resurrection power!  Elijah was then successively called by the Lord to go from Gilgal to Bethel, from Bethel to Jericho, and from Jericho to the Jordan River (2nd Kings 2:2,4,6).  Each time the Lord tested Elisha’s faithfulness by using Elijah to give Elisha an excuse for not going with him.  In each instance Elisha passed the tests by insisting that he as servant accompany Elijah!  Then Elisha was also prepared by trials!  Upon arriving at Bethel, the sons of the prophets asked Elisha if he knew Elijah would be taken from him that day.  The same also happened at Jericho.  In each instance Elisha replied by saying, ‘Yes, I know’ Be still!’  It is not an easy thing for one that means much in the growth of a servant of the Lord to pass, but it is imperative to see the Lord will never forsake you!  

Finally, it is important to see Elisha’s introduction to serving in resurrection power (v6b-8).  See 2nd Kings 2:8 above.  Rivers are often symbolic in the Bible, particularly in the old testament.  They often speak of times of transition, or even death.  If any of us are to serve in the resurrection power of Christ, we must transition from our ways to His way, from dependence on self to reliance on Christ in us!  When Jesus said, “If anyone serve Me, he must follow Me; and where I am, there my servant will be also.” (John 12:26).  Before He made that statement, He taught the parable of the grain of wheat, that the outer husk must die to bring forth more grains of wheat!  But notice the newness of life and ministry afterward!  A new prayer (v 9-10)=Vision fulfilled; A new power (v 11-13)=The mantle is now Elisha’s; A new person (v 14,15)=Resurrection power is obvious to others! 

No one serves in resurrection power on the wrong side of the river! 

Jon Moore

SERVING IN RESURRECTION POWER-Part One!

“So he (Elijah) departed from there and found Elisha the son of Shaphat, while he was plowing with twelve pairs of oxen before him, and he with the twelfth.  And Elijah passed over to him and threw his mantle on him.”  1st Kings 19:19

 It was a significant day when I came to see that the New Testament is enfolded in the Old Testament, and the Old Testament is unfolded in the New Testament!  As the Lord has progressively revealed His Truth with the passage of time, it becomes apparent that the doctrines of Truth clearly revealed in the New Testament are illustrated in the times, the people, the places and the events of the Old Testament.  Such is the case with resurrection power!  Easter Sunday is one of the most important dates on the calendar of a Christian.  On that day we celebrate the raising of Jesus Christ from the dead.  We say to one another, “He is risen!”  The response is, “He is risen indeed!”  Most sermons are focused on Christ’s victory over death, hell and the grave in our behalf (what He has done for us), but there is a deeper truth that is sometimes missed.  That truth is what the Lord wants to do in and through us!  Jesus said, “Apart from Me you can do nothing.”  (John 15:5).  Paul wrote, “For it is God which worketh in you both to will and do of His good pleasure.”  (Philippians 2:13).  The Life of Christ working in and through us in resurrection power is clearly stated in the New Testament and illustrated in numerous people in the Old Testament.  One example is the prophet Elisha.

 Perhaps the most amazing example was after Elisha’s death, when he was in his grave.  “And Elisha died, and they buried him.  Now the bands of the Moabites would invade the land in the spring of the year.  And as they were burying a man, behold, they saw a marauding band; and they cast the man into the grave of Elisha.  And when the man touched the bones of Elisha, he revived and stood up on his feet.” (2nd Kings 13:20-21).  Now, I would say that is resurrection power!  If nothing else, that is worth looking at the call of Elisha to powerful service.  The casting of a prophet’s mantle (upper body shawl) on a man in the Old Testament was the sign of calling to ministry (v 19).  Three things should be noted about the preconditions for serving the Lord in resurrection power.  1) Elisha was already a member of the Lord’s Old Testament people.  In New Testament terms Elisha was “saved”.  2) Not only was Elisha saved, but he had a servant’s spirit.  He had been farming his parent’s land (v 19).  3)  Finally, Elisha was already living a separated life!  Many of Elisha’s contemporaries had rejected the faith of their elders and had adopted a lifestyle of idolatry.  Yet, Elisha was true to God with all his heart (vv 20-21).

 A recently widowed woman could not get gas from the pump into her car.  She had the nozzle in the tank pulling the trigger, but did not have the pump “On”.  The motor was not engaged to pull the gas from the underground tank through the hose into the car’s gas tank!  Likewise, to serve the Lord powerfully, fruitfully one must serve in resurrection power, the power of the new Life in Christ, not the old life of self!

 Jon Moore

  1. S. Part Two will be coming soon…

 

PRAYING FOR REVIVAL!

“Oh, that You would rend the heavens and come down, That the mountains might quake at Your presence—As fire kindles the brushwood, as fire causes water to boil—To make Your name known to Your adversaries, That the nations may tremble at Your presence!  When You did awesome things which we did not expect, You came down, the mountains quaked at Your presence.  For from days of old they have not heard or perceived by ear, nor has the eye seen a God besides You, Who acts in behalf of the one who waits for Him.”  Isaiah 64:1-4 (NASB)

John Wesley, the founder of Methodism, is quoted as saying, “Prayer is the engine that drives revival, and testimony is its fuel!”  If that is true, “How should we pray today for revival?”  That begs another question, “What is revival?”  To deal with that question we need to sit at the feet of the prophet, Isaiah and learn what Biblical revival is, and how we should pray today.

First and foremost, we need to see clearly that Biblical revival comes only from the hand of Almighty God, and He is supernatural!  Listen to Isaiah and the terms he uses.  “Rend (tear open) the heavens and come down.”  Make the mountains quake (tremble) and the waters (oceans, rivers, lakes) boil at Your presence!  Listen also to these testimonies.  George Whitfield, reputed to be one of the greatest preachers who ever lived and was so greatly used in the revivals that swept both England and America in the early 1800s recorded this in his diary about one of the evangelistic services he preached, “Suddenly, God the Lord came down upon us!”  Those caught up in the great prayer-revival of the late 1850s spoke of “Holy Zones” where people were suddenly and unexpectedly confronted with the Holy and Mighty presence of God, confessed their sins and lost condition, calling on Christ for forgiveness and salvation and were gloriously saved!  Evan Roberts, the preacher God used so powerfully to shake the country of Wales in the early 1900s, and J. Edwin Orr, the historian who later wrote so eloquently of that revival used such terms as, “indisputable” and “inescapable” to speak of the awareness of the presence of God.  Mary Peckham, the young woman saved in the great revival that swept the Hebrides Islands in the late 1940s and 50s testified, “The islands were alive with God’s presence!” 

Make no mistake about it, the Bible speaks of God as being always present (Omnipresent).  At the same time, the Bible also speaks of exceptional times where He chooses to make His presence unusually known!  This is confirmed by countless testimonies of men and women of faith across the years recounting times where God chose to “come down,” sometimes unexpectedly, and sometimes after intense pleadings by the people of God! 

Are we not at a place where the world and the Church are in desperate need for the Lord to come down upon us?  “Lord, do it again!  Rain down on us in all Your glory with Your holy Judgment in one hand, and Your amazing Grace in the other!”

Jon Moore

THE TEST OF TRUST!

“How long, O Lord, will I call for help, and You will not hear?  I cry out to You, ‘Violence!’ Yet You do not save.  Why have you made men like the fish of the sea, like creeping things without a ruler over them?  The Chaldeans bring all of them up with a hook, drag them up with their net, and gather them together in their fishing net.  They offer a sacrifice to their net and burn incense to their fishing net.  Will they therefore empty their net and continually slay nations without sparing?  Habakkuk 1:2,14-17 

We certainly live in unusual times!  It almost seems that the world has been turned on its head, and things that have been tried and tested by time have been cast aside.  Worst of all, if we were to listen to the lies of our age-old enemy, it would seem to some that the Lord has forgotten His people, or He is no longer paying attention to present-day happenings.  It apparently seemed that way to the prophet as he stated his complaint to the Lord.  He asks, ‘Why are You silent when the wicked swallow up those more righteous than they?’ (v1:13) 

Imagine his initial shock when the Lord tells Habakkuk that He is going to use the Chaldeans to discipline His people (1:5-11).  He specifically says, ‘it will certainly come, it will not delay.’ (2:2,3)  Then the Lord reminds the prophet that Babylon will eventually be punished as well (2:5-11; 15-20). 

That bring us to one of the most mis-quoted, mis-interpreted verses in the Old Testament.  ‘O Lord revive Your work in the midst of the years.  In the midst of the years make it known.” (3:2b)  In processing what the Lord had just said to him concerning both the nation of  Judah and the nation of Babylon, Habukkuk cries, Your way is best, ‘In wrath remember mercy!’ (3:2c).  Then, coming to grips with the Truth he has just heard, the prophet utters one of the most eloquent prayers of faith recorded in Scripture.  ‘I heard, and my inward parts trembled.  At the sound my lips quivered.  Decay enters my bones, and in my place I tremble.  Because I must wait quietly for the day of distress; For the people to arise who will invade us.  Though the fig tree  should not blossom, and there be no fruit on the vines; Though the yield of the olive should fail, and the fields produce no food; Though the flock should be cut off from the fold, and there be no cattle in the stalls; Yet, I will exult in the Lord.  I will rejoice in the God of my salvation.’ (3:16-18) 

My prayer for myself and for you is that we be found so full of faith that we would respond in such a profound and powerful way! 

Jon Moore

 

THE CALL TO CONSIDER CAREFULLY!

“Come now, and let us reason together, says the Lord.  Though your sins are as scarlet, they will be as white as snow; Though they be red like crimson, they shall be like wool.  If you consent and obey, you will eat the best of the land, but if you refuse and rebel, you will be devoured by the sword.  Truly, the mouth of the Lord has spoken.”  Isaiah 1:18-20

 Is this it?  Are we living in the generation that sees the end of this world as we have known it?  Some say so, but is it true?  When the disciples asked Jesus when the end of the age would be, He told them, “No one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father alone!”  The question today (and every day) should be, “What is the Lord saying to me today?”  One worthy consideration is to examine how the Lord spoke to people in the days of the Old Testament.

 The prophet Isaiah was sent by the Lord to say to the Lord’s people, “Sons I have reared and brought up, but they have revolted against Me.”  (Ch. 1:2).  “Sons who act corruptly!  They have abandoned the Lord.” (Ch. 1:4).  “Your land is desolate, your cities are burned with fire, your fields—strangers are devouring them in your presence; It is desolation, as overthrown by strangers.”  (Ch. 1:7).  The people sought to placate God with their religious activities.  “I hate your new moon festivals and your appointed feasts.  They have become a burden to Me; I am weary of bearing them.”  (Ch. 1:14).  “Cease to do evil, learn to do good.”  (Ch. 1:16,17).  Then the Lord explains how to go about doing these things.

 He first gives a chance to His family, “Come now!”  (Ch. 18).  If we do come to the Lord, it will be at His timing, not ours!  “Though your sins are as scarlet, they will be white as snow.”  We can be forgiven!  As of today, the Day of Judgment has not arrived.  Thank God it is still the Day of His Grace!  Not only that, but we can be fulfilled.  “If you will consent and obey, you will eat the best of the land.”  The time to deal with the Lord is when He is dealing with us, and He is obviously dealing with us today!

 Our gracious God not only provides His family a chance for renewal, but He also announces a choice for the foolish.  “If you refuse and rebel, you will be devoured by the sword.”  (Ch. 1:20).  Jesus dealt with the issue of the reliability of the Father’s Word with His disciples in Matthew 7:24ff by using the analogy of the foundation for a house.  If one builds his house on a rock, even if floods come and winds blow, the house will stand.  But if  one builds his house on sand, when the winds blow and floods come, the house will fall, and great will be the fall of it!  Each must ask himself, “On what am I building my life?”

 So what about the reliability of Scripture when it comes to the future?  Once again Isaiah speaks up.  “Truly, the mouth of the Lord has spoken!” (Ch. 1:20).  Untold numbers throughout history have put their trust in the truthfulness of God and His Word, and the testimony of their lives have been an encouragement to others to trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not to your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will direct your paths.  (Proverbs 3:5,6).  What about you?  What about me?

 Jon Moore