Category Archives: April 2016

Finding Rest

Ruth 3:18

Then she said, “Sit still, my daughter, until you know how the matter will turn out; for the man will not rest until he has concluded the matter this day.”

God does not want you to “sweat”. Sweat here does not refer to your body’s perspiration, but your self-reliance or self-effort. God does not want you to believe that if you don’t do anything, nothing will happen. That may be true for someone without God in his life, but it is not true for you because you have God. And when He is in the picture, it changes everything! When you are resting in God, He works for you. In fact, when He works, you end up with more. He is the one who is giving to you. It is not about you trying to give to yourself.

This was what happened to Ruth in the Old Testament. After laboring in the barley fields from morning to evening, she was able to glean one ephah of barley (Ruth 2:17), which was equivalent to a 10-day supply of barley. Certainly, this amount was a blessing to her. But when she rested at the feet of Boaz, her kinsman-redeemer, and did not labor, she received six ephahs of barley (Ruth 3:15), which was equivalent to a 60-day supply! When Ruth sought her own blessing, she obtained only one ephah. But when she sought the blesser, she received much more. Ruth’s blessings did not stop there. While Ruth rested and sat still as her mother-in-law Naomi had instructed, Boaz, who was the owner of the barley field, went to work, initiating actions, executing them and speaking on Ruth’s behalf. Right through it all, Ruth sat still and rested. Eventually, Boaz, the barley man himself, married Ruth. (Ruth 4) That meant no more measured wealth of six ephahs, but the yield of the whole barley field in total!

Boaz is a picture of Jesus, our heavenly kinsman-redeemer. When we rest in the Lord, He will not rest. He will work on our behalf. What do we do then? We just trust in and enjoy His love for us.

So, stop striving and be at rest. If salvation, the greatest work, comes to us by resting in Jesus’ finished work, how much more will all the other blessings?

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Fear Not

Isaiah 54:14

In righteousness you shall be established; you shall be far from oppression, for you shall not fear; and from terror, for it shall not come near you.

Have you ever asked yourself why some Christians are constantly beset with overwhelming challenges, sicknesses and defeat if God’s promise, “No weapon formed against you shall prosper” (Isaiah 54:17), is true? Well, this promise comes with a condition – “In righteousness you shall be established”. When you are established in righteousness, you will be far from oppression and terror, and not a single weapon formed against you will prosper! This condition is not hard to meet. For a start, you already have righteousness! When you received Jesus as your Savior, you received the gift of righteousness which enables you to reign in life. (Romans 5:17) This righteousness does not come from you but the Lord. (Isaiah 54:17) And when you are established in His righteousness, no weapon formed against you will prosper.

But what does being established in righteousness mean? To be established in something is to have that something as your very foundation for security. So God wants you to know, be sure of and grow in the revelation that you are righteous by the blood of Jesus, by His perfect sacrifice at the cross. When you feel as if you are in a storm, tossed here and there, and you begin to experience worry and fear, remind yourself of who you are in Christ. You are the righteousness of God in Christ and you have His righteousness! As you do this, you will begin to notice the worry and fear slide off you, for when you are established in righteousness, “you shall be far from oppression, for you shall not fear; and from terror, for it shall not come near you”! That is why God wants you to be established in righteousness. He wants you to be free from fear, and far from oppression and terror.

So when the pressure is on, hold fast to the belief that you are the righteousness of God in Christ. That is where no weapon formed against you can prosper. As you keep believing and confessing your righteousness in Christ, revelation will break forth and you will experience the release of God’s miraculous provision, divine protection and blessings into your life!

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Make Your Way Prosperous

Joshua 1:8

This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night…For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.

Have you ever wondered why the Torah (the first five books of Moses) is read out loud by the Jews. They read God’s Word out loud because of Joshua 1:8 “This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night…”

The word “meditate” in English means to ponder. But in Hebrew, it is the word hagah, which means to utter or mutter under your breath. In other words, when you meditate on God’s Word, you speak forth or confess His Word instead of just giving it mental assent. Hagah God’s Word by confessing verses in the areas that you are believing God for breakthroughs.

You might say, “I am waiting for God to make my way prosperous.” No, the Bible says that you will make your way prosperous when you hagah God’s Word. So speak forth verses in the areas which you want to see breakthroughs and you will have good success.

Now, confessing God’s Word does not move God to do things for you. It is not a formula. God had already moved when He gave up Jesus to die for you. However, when you confess His Word, it moves you from a position of doubt to faith. It moves your heart from a position of “Is it true?” to “I believe it!” When that happens, “you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success”!

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Powerful Prayers

Luke 13:12

But when Jesus saw her, He called her to Him and said to her, “Woman, you are loosed from your infirmity.”

When you have a need, do you pray or do you plead? Do you begin your prayers with words like, “Please God, please! God, I beg You to have mercy!” Prayers that plead and beg imply that your heavenly Father is not willing to do it. Yet, He is far more gracious and willing to give to you than you are willing to ask, think or imagine. (Ephesians 3:20) He desires above all things that you prosper and be in health, even as your soul prospers. (3 John 1:2) In fact, long before you have a need, God has already met that need. Long before you knew you needed a Savior, He sent His Son to be your Savior. This is your God! He is a good God. So when you beg Him for something, you are actually saying that He is reluctant to give and needs to be persuaded strongly before He will move. Yet, He is not like that at all.

Jesus knew the heart of the Father. When He saw the woman bound with a spirit of infirmity, He did not pray, “Oh Father! She has been suffering for 18 long years! I beseech You, Father, have mercy on her. Please, please heal her!” No, when Jesus saw her, He immediately proclaimed, “Woman, you are loosed from your infirmity,” because He knew the heart of the Father. He knew that the Father wanted her delivered from her crippling condition.

When you pray, proclaim your healing, protection and provision because your Father’s heart overflows with love for you. And when you declare it, He sanctions it. When you declare it, He establishes it!

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Who Condemns You Now?

John 8:11

“Neither do I condemn you; go and sin no more.”

When Jesus was on earth, a woman caught in the act of adultery was brought before Him by the scribes and Pharisees, also known as the religious mafia of His day. They tried to trap Him by posing a question that was difficult to answer: “Now Moses, in the law, commanded us that such should be stoned. But what do You say?” (John 8:5) Jesus answered, “He who is without sin among you, let him throw a stone at her first.” (John 8:7) The scribes and Pharisees began to leave one by one till none of them were left. The people in the crowd who wanted to condemn the woman could not. But Jesus, the only one in the crowd who truly had the power to condemn her, would not. He then asked her, “Woman…Has no one condemned you?” (John 8:10) He spoke such words of grace to her because He loved her. Also, by asking her the question, He was giving her a chance to speak words of no condemnation to herself – “No one [condemns me], Lord.” (John 8:11)

Jesus not only spoke words of grace to her, He also gave her the gift of no condemnation – “Neither do I condemn you; go and sin no more”. It was when she received the gift of no condemnation that she had the power to “go and sin no more”. Today, you have the gift of no condemnation because the Son of God was condemned for all your sins. (Romans 8:1) Today, God cannot condemn you when you sin because He is faithful and just to what His Son has done. So if the devil tries to convince you that God is angry with you when you blow it, just say, “God does not condemn me today because He has already condemned Jesus at the cross 2,000 years ago!” Unfortunately, we still hear people saying, “Go and sin no more first, then I won’t condemn you.” Maybe you have been saying this to yourself. But God says, “I don’t condemn you. Go and sin no more.” He gives you the gift of no condemnation, so that you have the strength to go and sin no more!

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Receive Your Miracle

Song of Solomon 4:7

You are all fair, my love, and there is no spot in you.

Sometimes, when we don’t receive our healing, breakthrough, restoration or miracle, we can’t help but think that something is wrong with us. We tell ourselves, “Nothings wrong with God, nothings wrong with the Word, so something must be wrong with me!” If you think that your miracle depends on you, then you are on shaky ground. In the old covenant, we see this “it’s all up to me” demand put on man. God’s part was to bless His people, but only if they played their part by obeying all of His laws. If they didn’t do their part, not only would they not be blessed, but the curse would also come on them. Most of the time, they ended up under the curse because they just could not keep all of God’s laws. So God found fault with that covenant because though He wanted to bless man, man’s sins made it difficult for Him to do so. Man himself was the weak link.

In the new covenant, man has no part to play except to believe and receive. The new covenant of grace was cut between God the Father and God the Son – both infallible and more than able to keep the covenant. God the Son is man’s representative. Jesus represents you and me. So in this covenant, how much we can receive from God depends on how good our representative is, how perfect His obedience is. Of course, Jesus is the perfect Man with perfect obedience. So in Him, we are qualified to receive all the blessings of God! We only need to believe and receive.

Jesus’ blood has been shed for the remission of all your sins. You are now the righteousness of God in Christ. (2 Corinthians 5:21) By His one perfect sacrifice, He has perfected you forever. (Hebrews 10:14, KJV) There is no spot in you!

Today, the devil has no right to tell you that you cannot be blessed because there is something wrong with you. So as you are waiting for your miracle, say, “Nothings wrong with God, nothings wrong with the Word and nothings wrong with me! I am going to receive my miracle!”

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God Teaches You To Profit

Isaiah 48:17

“I am the Lord your God, who teaches you to profit, who leads you by the way you should go.”

God instructs us for our own benefit. He wants us to profit in every area of our lives – health, finances, career, marriage and family relationships. The Bible says that it is God who teaches us to profit. And it is He who leads us in the way that we should go. God always has our best interests at heart. We only have to sit at His feet, listen to His Word and just have fresh, daily communion with Him, and He will make our way fruitful.

But we are constantly bombarded with things to do every day, like sending the kids to school, attending a business meeting or making a sales presentation. Likewise, in church, there are just as many important things to attend to – ministering to the needy, reaching out to the lost and healing the sick. But you know what? All these things will be taken care of when we sit at Jesus’ feet and listen to His Word.

What was the Lord’s response to Martha’s complaint that her sister was sitting at His feet and listening to Him, instead of helping her with the many tasks? “Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things. But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her.” (Luke 10:41-42) Yet, many of us are like Martha. We worry about many things. And we are so busy that we have no time to sit at Jesus’ feet to listen to His Word and enjoy communion with Him. When we fail to draw from Him, we end up running on our own strength, and relying on our own flesh and wisdom to get things done. Listen, you can never have a plan that is better than God’s!

If you want to be led by God’s wisdom and timing in your decision-making? Then, make it a point to choose the good part like Mary did. Spend time with Jesus, open your Bible and say, “Lord, speak to me.” You will find that your heavenly Father takes care of your troubles, and teaches and leads you to profit!

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Trust In The Lord

Proverbs 3:5, 6

Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight.

Leaning has the sense of putting your whole weight on something, resting on and trusting in that person or thing. When we have an important decision to make, we sometimes feel like we can’t trust anyone – not even God. But God knows what is best for us. He is a better judge of what we want than even we are! We need to trust Him completely in every choice we make. That does not mean that we should omit careful thinking or belittle our God-given ability to reason; but we should not trust our own ideas to the exclusion of all others. We must never be wise in our own eyes. We should always be willing to listen to and be corrected by God’s Word and wise counselors. Bring your decisions to God in prayer; use the Bible as your guide; and then follow God’s leading. He will make your paths straight by both guiding you and protecting you.

To acknowledge God’s guidance, said Solomon, we must acknowledge God in all our ways. This means turning every area of our lives over to Him. About a thousand years later, Jesus emphasized this same truth (Matthew 6:33). Look at your values and priorities and find out what is important to you. In what areas have you not acknowledged Him? Although you may acknowledge God in many areas of your life, it is the areas that you attempt to restrict or ignore His influence that will cause you grief. Make Him a vital part of everything you do; then He will guide you because you will be working to accomplish His purposes.

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Need A Miracle

John 11:40

Jesus said to her, “Did I not say to you that if you would believe you would see the glory of God?”

God, who parted the Red Sea, rained manna from heaven, caused the walls of Jericho to fall, shut the lions’ mouths, healed the sick, raised the dead and calmed the sea, still performs miracles today. However, some Christians doubt that God wants to work a miracle for them today. They believe that there were miracles when Jesus walked the earth, but they think that the day of miracles is over. And they talk about how everything will be perfect one day in the sweet by and by. But God wants us to know that He is still the God of miracles today.

Martha was like one of those Christians. She wondered if Jesus could perform a miracle when her brother Lazarus died. By the time Jesus arrived on the scene, Lazarus had already been dead for four days. So she thought that Jesus was four days too late. That is why she said, “Lord, if You had been here, my brother would not have died.” (John 11:21) And even when Jesus said that Lazarus would rise again, she said, “I know that he will rise again in the resurrection at the last day.” (John 11:24) Martha believed that Jesus could perform miracles in the past and would do the same in the future, but she did not believe that He could give her a miracle when she needed it right then. You see, Martha was someone who lived wishing that the past could be changed and believing that the future would be better. But she did not believe that the “I Am” was there to meet her present need.

Today, God stands at the point of your need. What miracle do you need from Him? Believe that He is still the same miracle-working God today. Believe that you will see the glory of God. Believe and you will see your miracle!

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A New Covenant OF Grace

Psalm 89:34

My covenant I will not break, nor alter the word that has gone out of My lips.

When God promises you something, do you take Him at His Word? Or do you, like Abraham, ask, “Lord God, how shall I know that I will inherit it?” (Genesis 15:8) God did not reprimand Abraham for failing to take Him at His Word. That is how gracious God is to His people. He even came down to Abraham’s level of faith and did something to assure Abraham that He would always keep His promises – He made a covenant with Abraham. (Genesis 15:9-17) God did not make a covenant with Abraham for His own benefit. He bound Himself to a covenant because He knew that Abraham needed to know in his heart that God would do whatever He had promised him.

Man finds it hard to just believe words. For example, when you buy a house, a contract is drawn up and signed by both parties, and lawyers are involved. You need a contract because you may not trust the other person’s words and he may not trust yours either. Likewise, we find it hard to take God at His Word. So God made a covenant with us, not because He cannot be trusted, but because He knows that we find it hard to just believe what He says. God knows that man will wonder, “What if God wakes up on the wrong side of His bed tomorrow and decides to fry me instead of bless me?” Because God has made a new covenant with us, which is established by the blood of His Son, we can, like Abraham, not waver through unbelief regarding the promises of God, but be strengthened in our faith, being fully persuaded that God will do as He has promised. (Romans 4:20-21) We have the assurance that God will not wake up one day and say, “Forget the new covenant. I want to remember your sins now and curse you instead of bless you!”

The new covenant blessings for you are guaranteed because God has bound Himself to the covenant. And He is a covenant-keeping God who is willing and more than able to do everything He has promised you!

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