BE STRONG AND OF GOOD COURAGE. Joshua 1:9, Have not I commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the LORD thy God [is] with thee whithersoever thou goest.
We are not weak, we are not without hope! We are not dismayed. We will not be defeated, we will not perish. We will gain victory and victory we will sustain. We belong to Jesus Christ and He is the great I AM. He is the I AM. That is present tense, that is right now in this moment. That is the King of Kings, the Most High God saying I am the God of now. I am present tense. I am not a God that is only to be considered in the future. In the future God will take care of me. In the end I will be ok. When the storm passes God will take care of me. NO! NO! God will take care of me now! God will hold me now! God will direct my path now! God is in control of my life now! He is God of the present and He will empower my fight today. He will strenthen my blows, today! He will hold my aim steadfast, today! He will be the reason I will never ever quit. Jesus Christ is my rock, He is my Lord today! Yeah though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death today I will fear no evil. I will fear no evil because I am a warrior of Jesus Christ. I am a warrior in the army of Jesus and He is my commander. He is my guide! He is my help in time of need! He is my Savior! I will for Him forever! This world may bring hardship, this world may bring death, but I will obey and Jesus will win. I am in this fight until the end. I have a battle cry CHAZAK AMATS! CHAZAK AMATS! I will be strong and of good courage. If Jesus is for, who can be against me. My redeemer lives and because He lives, I will live. I will live to fight the good fight. Lock Arms with Me, Warrior Up and Let us go fight the fight laid out for us.
Reaching for Him,
Brother Big Daddy
Let Your mercies come also to me,
Your salvation according to Your word.
42 So shall I have an answer for him who reproaches me,
For I trust in Your word.
43 And take not the word of truth utterly out of my mouth, For I have hoped in Your ordinances.
44 So shall I keep Your law continually, Forever and ever.
45 And I will walk at liberty, For I seek Your precepts.
46 I will speak of Your testimonies also before kings,
And will not be ashamed.
47 And I will delight myself in Your commandments,
Which I love.
48 My hands also I will lift up to Your commandments,
Which I love, And I will meditate on Your statutes.
Where do your answers come from? Answers to those who oppose you? Answers to those who are for you? In verse 42 David says it plainly, our answers should come from the Word of God. I listen to many conversations and have determined that many children of God are just like their pastors, they do a great deal of talking. To often and to boldly, we inject our own opinions into the lives of the children of God who are trying to walk on this earth in a manner that lines up with Jesus Christ and His teachings. To often we come along, seasoned Christians as we may call ourselves, and we begin interjecting our opinions into their lives. Have our opinions been confirmed in the scriptures? Do any of them run contrary to the scriptures? Be careful, when God has had enough of this kind of intervention, it ain't good for those who are so self directed and ill guided.
I love verse 45 because it says we can walk with freedom because we seek after the precepts of God. We seek after Jesus Christ and His Word. If we do this, we walk in freedom. Verse 46 says I will speak of your testimonies before all men, even kings and rulers. i will proclaim your name and I will walk boldly in the ways of Jesus Christ and will not be ashamed. Verse 47 says I will be joyful, happy, at peace, content, in the commandments of God. It says that the Word of God will be a source of joy in my life. It says that I will love the Word of God. Finally verse 48 says I will love the commandments of God and they will be on my mind. I will meditate on them. I will think about them, I will reason through them. They will drive my life and control my heart. My love will be in them and they will drive me in and through my relationship with the Most High. Do you love the Word of God? It is very difficult to run the play without the play book. Love the Word and Give yourself to its commandments.
Reaching for Him,
Brother Big Daddy
33 Teach me, O Lord, the way of Your statutes,
And I shall keep it to the end.
34 Give me understanding, and I shall keep Your law;
Indeed, I shall observe it with my whole heart.
35 Make me walk in the path of Your commandments,
For I delight in it.
36 Incline my heart to Your testimonies,
And not to covetousness.
37 Turn away my eyes from looking at worthless things,
And revive me in Your way.
38 Establish Your word to Your servant,
Who is devoted to fearing You.
39 Turn away my reproach which I dread,
For Your judgments are good.
40 Behold, I long for Your precepts;
Revive me in Your righteousness.
We have all heard it said from people we witness to, I just don't understand the Bible. I know we have said it ourselves as well, but hey, I was trying to give us a break. But there are no days off here, there are no vacations, there are no shut downs it is a twenty four seven tell it like it is. So here goes the truth as revealed in the Word of God. The obvious question regarding our Bible confusion is do we know Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior? Is the Holy Spirit living inside of you enabling you to understand what you read? If the answer is yes, Jesus Christ is my Lord and Savior, then the next question is who is teaching you? Who are you asking to teach you the scriptures and what are your prayers regarding God's Holy Word? Finally, what is your commitment going into your Bible study, Are you there to negotiate or to walk in obedience? David asks God in Psalm 119 verse 33 to teach him His statues. David then declares that he will keep them to the end. So I think this is a major factor in our study of the scripture. First of all what is our intent? Are we studying God's Word so we can keep His commandments? Are we confused by what we don't want to do, yet crystal clear about what we want to do. You see, I think this is where a great deal of our confusion slides into our understanding of the Bible. We tend to get all confused and just can't understand when the words we read clash with our own desires. However, the realty of this situation is we should should be seeing in high definition when this takes place. We should expect God's Word to put us in conflict. However we should long before we begin to study God's Word purpose it in our heart's that we will do what He reveals and thus the conflict is minimized...I surrender. David goes on to ask God to give him understanding v34, he then commits to keep the law with his whole heart. David in verse 35 asks God to make him walk in his commandments this is a pretty bold request when you really sit down and think about it. He then declares that He will delight in such a walk of obedience. David goes on to request that God will incline his heart to God's testimonies, to turn away his eyes from worthless things, David then pleads with God to revive him to His precepts and judgments. The bottom line is David prayed for understanding with a mindset that He would surrender to God's way. David was not negotiating with God regarding obedience. He was praying for understanding committed to doing what was revealed. When you run the play today don't negotiate your way through your assignment. Do it with your whole heart. Run the play exactly how you are instructed and watch the beauty of your relationship with Christ Jesus unfold.
Reaching for Him,
Brother Big Daddy
There are so many scriptures in the Bible that speak of the Bible. The Word of God is clear about the power contained within its pages and that every letter of every line will be as it is written. We have confidence that the Word of God is perfect and infallible. It is powerful and is able to accomplish much in our life. I would like for you to examine Psalm 119. It is a very long chapter, but there are several verses that speak directly to the power of the Word of God. Take time to read all the chapter, let the scriptures about the Word jump out at you and speak to you. I want to take a look at 119:9-11.
9How can a young man cleanse his way?
By taking heed according to Your word.
10 With my whole heart I have sought You;
Oh, let me not wander from Your commandments!
11 Your word I have hidden in my heart,
That I might not sin against You.
How can a young man cleanse his way? By taking heed according to the Word of God. To take heed means to pay careful attention to. So how can a man cleans his way, by paying careful attention to the Word of God. If we want to cleans our way we must be in the Word of God. Many people struggle with certain sin in their life and when ask what are you doing to defeat, combat, and destroy this sin in your life? Generally, there response is I am trying my best, but sometimes I just can't help it. Now they could probably find someone out there to say, its okay, everything will be fine. Generally, this comes with a gentle tap on the shoulder, a warm embrace and the person leaves in the same torn-up state in which they arrived. Sometimes we must be bold and direct with folks and let them understand they have some responsibility in this battle and they can help it. Ask them if they have been in the Word of God? When they say yes, then throw the next hammer down with this question, what has God said to you through the scripture and what scripture is God using right now to speak with you? I want to be praying over this scripture and the message God is speaking to you. Many times you get the deer in the headlights look and they walk away saying man that dude is crazy, He is some kind of fanatic. I walk away hurting for that person because I know they have not tapped into the true power in their relation with Jesus. However, I do walk away from them thinking, Jesus you are some kind of wonderful. Hey the coolest thing is that this applies to mine and your lives as well. Dude for real, this is not reserved for those who come to us, it is actually effective in our own lives as well. I know amazing isn't it? When we keep reading this scripture it says that not only will it cleanse our path but that it will keep us from sinning. Well that's RIGHT! If we stay in God's Word, if we hide it in our hearts (for those of you wondering this includes memorizing it), then we will not sin. Awesome, the Word of God will cleanse my path and then if I continue in God's Word, it will empower my life to stay away from sin. You have to admit, God is pretty cool and His plan is just absolutely awesome. Oh yeah, He reveals His plan, you guessed it, in His Word. Study His Word Today! Stop arguing and making excuses and just surrender. Part of running the play today is studying His Word. So Get In THE GAME, RUN THE PLAY
Reaching for Him,
Brother Big Daddy
Romans 12:1-2I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. 2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.
As we write our testimonies I think Romans 12:1-2 is so fitting because our testimony describes the transformation mentioned in Romans 12:1-2. We must be transformed by the mighty power of Jesus living inside us and the practice of renewing our mind with spiritual, kingdom minded things. Paul says I beg you to present yourself a living sacrifice. The term living sacrifice needs some attention as generally a sacrifice is dead, placed on the altar and consumed by fire. However, Paul tells us we are to be a living sacrifice. He describes this also in 1 Corinthians 15:31 when He declares, "I die daily." You see Paul is saying that we must present our life as a living sacrifice to Jesus today. We must put aside our own desires and live for Jesus and do what He has called us to do. Tomorrow we are blessed to get up in the and do it all over again. He must have our total surrender. We do this over and over and as part of a transformation that makes us new creatures, new as children of God that grow and mature, producing the fruit we are designed to produce, and working in the kingdom as we are molded and shaped for each and every task. We are transformed when we renew our mind. When our mind is focused on spiritual things, we walk spiritually minded. When our mind is focused on the gutter, we walk in the gutter. The scripture is where we must spend time renewing our mind. It is where God speaks to us, confirms our steps, and solidifies our path. The scripture is where God transforms. Without the Word of God directing our life we are simply playing a game of chance. Paul says when we are transformed we prove what the perfect will of God is. Are you proving God's will today. Are you being transformed, are you different today because of Jesus Christ? Is it a daily process? Go live it out! Run the play today!
Reaching for Him,
Brother Big Daddy
I hope you all are preparing your testimony. I hope you are pouring yourself into this task and are asking Jesus Christ to lead guide and direct every point you put on paper. As I opened my computer the song Indescribable came on and Chris Tomiln is so wonderfully singing "You are amazing God." Amazing He is and He loves His children. If you are wondering what in the world I am talking about regarding your testimony, then go take a look at the blog for Monday and Tuesday.
35 Again, the next day, John stood with two of his disciples. 36 And looking at Jesus as He walked, he said, “Behold the Lamb of God!”37 The two disciples heard him speak, and they followed Jesus.38 Then Jesus turned, and seeing them following, said to them,“What do you seek?”
They said to Him, “Rabbi” (which is to say, when translated, Teacher), “where are You staying?”39 He said to them, “Come and see.” They came and saw where He was staying, and remained with Him that day (now it was about the tenth hour).40 One of the two who heard John speak, and followed Him, was Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother. 41 He first found his own brother Simon, and said to him, “We have found the Messiah” (which is translated, the Christ). 42 And he brought him to Jesus.
Now when Jesus looked at him, He said, “You are Simon the son of Jonah. You shall be called Cephas” (which is translated, A Stone).43 The following day Jesus wanted to go to Galilee, and He found Philip and said to him, “Follow Me.” 44 Now Philip was from Bethsaida, the city of Andrew and Peter. 45 Philip found Nathanael and said to him, “We have found Him of whom Moses in the law, and also the prophets, wrote—Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph.”46 And Nathanael said to him, “Can anything good come out of Nazareth?”Philip said to him, “Come and see.”47 Jesus saw Nathanael coming toward Him, and said of him,“Behold, an Israelite indeed, in whom is no deceit!”48 Nathanael said to Him, “How do You know me?”Jesus answered and said to him, “Before Philip called you, when you were under the fig tree, I saw you.”49 Nathanael answered and said to Him, “Rabbi, You are the Son of God! You are the King of Israel!”50 Jesus answered and said to him, “Because I said to you, ‘I saw you under the fig tree,’ do you believe? You will see greater things than these.” 51 And He said to him, “Most assuredly, I say to you, hereafter you shall see heaven open, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of Man.”
Are you living a come and see life. When people want to see what a Christian life is like can they "come and see your life." We are to walk as Christ Jesus walked. May the world come and see.
Reaching for Him,
Brother Big Daddy
If you have not read yesterday's blog please please do so and then take a look at today's. Start working on your testimony. This is a breakdown of Paul's Testimony from Acts 22.
1. Who Paul was?
3 “I am indeed a Jew, born in Tarsus of Cilicia, but brought up in this city at the feet of Gamaliel, taught according to the strictness of our fathers’ law, and was zealous toward God as you all are today. 4 I persecuted this Way to the death, binding and delivering into prisons both men and women, 5 as also the high priest bears me witness, and all the council of the elders, from whom I also received letters to the brethren, and went to Damascus to bring in chains even those who were there to Jerusalem to be punished.
2. What Happened?
5 as also the high priest bears me witness, and all the council of the elders, from whom I also received letters to the brethren, and went to Damascus to bring in chains even those who were there to Jerusalem to be punished. 6 “Now it happened, as I journeyed and came near Damascus at about noon, suddenly a great light from heaven shone around me. 7 And I fell to the ground and heard a voice saying to me, ‘Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me?’ 8 So I answered, ‘Who are You, Lord?’ And He said to me, ‘I am Jesus of Nazareth, whom you are persecuting.’9 “And those who were with me indeed saw the light and were afraid, but they did not hear the voice of Him who spoke to me. 10 So I said, ‘What shall I do, Lord?’ And the Lord said to me, ‘Arise and go into Damascus, and there you will be told all things which are appointed for you to do.’ 11 And since I could not see for the glory of that light, being led by the hand of those who were with me, I came into Damascus. 12 “Then a certain Ananias, a devout man according to the law, having a good testimony with all the Jews who dwelt there, 13 came to me; and he stood and said to me, ‘Brother Saul, receive your sight.’ And at that same hour I looked up at him. 14 Then he said, ‘The God of our fathers has chosen you that you should know His will, and see the Just One, and hear the voice of His mouth. 15 For you will be His witness to all men of what you have seen and heard. 16 And now why are you waiting? Arise and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on the name of the Lord.’
3. What have you been doing ever since?
17 “Now it happened, when I returned to Jerusalem and was praying in the temple, that I was in a trance 18 and saw Him saying to me, ‘Make haste and get out of Jerusalem quickly, for they will not receive your testimony concerning Me.’ 19 So I said, ‘Lord, they know that in every synagogue I imprisoned and beat those who believe on You. 20 And when the blood of Your martyr Stephen was shed, I also was standing by consenting to his death, and guarding the clothes of those who were killing him.’ 21 Then He said to me, ‘Depart, for I will send you far from here to the Gentiles.’”