VIDEO Please Forgive Me

Jan 30, 2010

Song “Please Forgive Me” sung by Jason Crabb. Tribute to our Lord Jesus for what he has done for us. Please forgive me! I love you Lord. I will serve you. Help others find the way. Praise Jesus!!

Tissue Boxes – The Divine Commandment of Life

Tissue Boxes
tissue box

I trust in you, Lord; I say, “You are my God.” My times are in your hands. Psalm 31:14-15

As I sat in the surgical waiting room, I had time to think. I had been here recently, when we received the jarring news that my only brother, much too young, was “brain dead.”

And so on this day, waiting for news about my wife who was undergoing a serious surgical procedure, I penned a lengthy note to her. Then, surrounded by nervous chatter and oblivious children, I listened for the quiet voice of God.

No matter what happens, our good & bad times still remain in God’s capable hands.

Suddenly, news! The surgeon wanted to see me. I went to a secluded room to wait. There, on the table, sat two tissue boxes, conspicuously available. They weren’t for the sniffles. They were for cold, hard phrases like I heard when my brother died—“brain dead” and “nothing we can do.”

In such times of grief or uncertainty, the honesty of the psalms makes them a natural place to turn. Psalm 31 was the heart-cry of David, who endured so much that he wrote, “My life is consumed by anguish” (v. 10). Compounding that grief was the pain of abandonment by his friends and neighbors (v. 11).

But David had the bedrock of faith in the one true God. “I trust in you, Lord; I say, ‘You are my God.’ My times are in your hands” (vv. 14-15). His lament concludes with resounding encouragement and hope. “Be strong and take heart, all you who hope in the Lord” (v. 24).

This time in the waiting room, the surgeon gave us good news: My wife could expect a full and complete recovery. Of course we’re relieved and grateful! But even if she hadn’t been “okay,” our times still remain in God’s capable hands.

Lord, we give You our deepest grief and pain as well as our joy. Thank You for Your constant love and presence no matter what today holds for us. You alone are faithful!

When we put our problems in God’s hands, He puts His peace in our hearts.

By Tim Gustafson
The Divine Commandment of Life
sunset clouds

…be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect. —Matthew 5:48

Our Lord’s exhortation to us in Matthew 5:38-48 is to be generous in our behavior toward everyone. Beware of living according to your natural affections in your spiritual life. Everyone has natural affections— some people we like and others we don’t like. Yet we must never let those likes and dislikes rule our Christian life. “If we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another” (1 John 1:7), even those toward whom we have no affection.

The example our Lord gave us here is not that of a good person, or even of a good Christian, but of God Himself. “…be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect.” In other words, simply show to the other person what God has shown to you. And God will give you plenty of real life opportunities to prove whether or not you are “perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect.” Being a disciple means deliberately identifying yourself with God’s interests in other people. Jesus says, “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another” (John 13:34-35).

The true expression of Christian character is not in good-doing, but in God-likeness. If the Spirit of God has transformed you within, you will exhibit divine characteristics in your life, not just good human characteristics. God’s life in us expresses itself as God’s life, not as human life trying to be godly. The secret of a Christian’s life is that the supernatural becomes natural in him as a result of the grace of God, and the experience of this becomes evident in the practical, everyday details of life, not in times of intimate fellowship with God. And when we come in contact with things that create confusion and a flurry of activity, we find to our own amazement that we have the power to stay wonderfully poised even in the center of it all.

Jesus Christ can afford to be misunderstood; we cannot. Our weakness lies in always wanting to vindicate ourselves. The Place of Help, 1051 L

Oswald Chambers

Patience of God

1 Timothy 1:12-16

If God were impatient, we would all experience immediate wrath for sin. Imagine living in constant fear of doing something wrong! But fortunately for all of us, God possesses great patience.

One reason that the Lord shows mercy is because He knows we have a fallen nature. Just as a toddler has to learn obedience, God’s children also must learn to walk in His ways. He takes pleasure in watching us do what is right and wants to help us when we go wrong.

Paul appreciated God’s patience. His life demonstrated that because the Father is slow to anger, unbelievers have a much greater opportunity for salvation (1 Tim. 1:16).

In Romans 2:4, the apostle affirms that our heavenly Father’s kindness and mercy lead to repentance. But in the following verse, he warns those with stubborn hearts that they will experience judgment. In other words, the warning is that God’s patience will at some point run out if someone continuously sins against Him, submitting to unrighteousness instead of to the Father.

In the Old Testament, Israel repeatedly experienced this painful truth. The people turned away from the Lord and did evil in His sight by worshipping idols. God patiently tolerated their waywardness, giving them ample opportunity to choose obedience. Eventually He’d withdraw His protection until they would cry out and return to Him. Ultimately, even when the Lord allows calamity to reach His children, it is still drenched with His love and purpose.

Is there unconfessed sin in your life? Be thankful that the Lord is slow to anger. And be wise: Do not test the limits of His tolerance.

The Comfortable Church

“Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked.” (Revelation 3:17)

This is the heart of Christ’s rebuke of the church at Laodicea, the “lukewarm” church (v. 16) of the last days. This is an evangelical church for its candlestick is still in place (note Revelation 1:20; 2:5), but it has become a neutral church, “neither cold nor hot” (3:15). The reason for its tepid witness is because it has become “rich, and increased with goods,” comfortable in a culture which tends to equate material prosperity with success and God’s favor. It may have acquired large and beautiful facilities, developed special programs of many kinds, featured a variety of musicians and other artists, and even gained a measure of political power. Yet, Christ calls it poor and blind and naked!

Not all large churches become like this, of course, but it is always a real danger. The desire for large congregations can easily lead to compromising biblical standards of doctrine and practice. “Woe to them that are at ease in Zion,” the prophet warned (Amos 6:1).

Note that the Lord began His letter to the Laodicean church by identifying Himself as “the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God” (Revelation 3:14). This strongly suggests that a major reason for the development of such complacency in a large church (or a small church, for that matter) is neglect of these three doctrines—the sufficiency of Christ, the inerrant authority of God’s Word, and the special creation of all things by God.

The letter to this church ends with the sad picture of Christ standing at its door, seeking admission (v. 20). “He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches” (v. 22). HMM

The Urgency of God’s Will

And one of the elders answered, saying unto me, What are these which are arrayed in white robes? and whence came they? And I said unto him, Sir, thou knowest. And he said to me, These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. —Revelation 7:13-14

If we are serious about our Christian witness, the day may be near when we may be persecuted—even killed—for our faith. We should be stirred, as John was stirred, as we witness this vast company of God’s saints in heaven who have come through earth’s great tribulation.

I am not saying we are not Christians. I am only trying to find out why we are so far from revival and refreshing and renewal. I am only trying to determine why we are so far from recognizing the urgency of God’s will laid upon us by the Holy Spirit.

If we belong to Jesus Christ, we should never compromise our spiritual decisions on the basis of “What is this going to cost me?” We ought only to ask, “What is my spiritual duty and my spiritual privilege before God?”

Please, Lord, give me this kind of commitment. Amen.

Truth Will Not Give Itself to a Rebel

…He that followeth me… shall have the light of life. John 8:12

Too many people consider Jesus Christ a ‘convenience.’ We make Him a lifeboat to get us to shore, a guide to find us when we are lost. We reduce Him simply to a Big Friend to help us when we are in trouble.

That is not biblical Christianity!

Jesus Christ is Lord, and when a man is willing to do His will, he is repenting and the truth flashes in. For the first time in his life, he finds himself willing to say, “I will do the will of the Lord, even if I die for it!”

Illumination will begin in his heart. That is repentance—for he has been following his own will and now decides to do the will of God.

Before the Word of God can mean anything inside of me there must be obedience to the Word. Truth will not give itself to a rebel. Truth will not impart life to a man who will not obey the light. If you are disobeying Jesus Christ you cannot expect to be enlightened spiritually.

No man can know the Son except the Father tell him. No man can know the Father except the Son reveal Him. I can know about God: that is the body of truth. But I cannot know God, the soul of truth, unless I am ready to be obedient.

True discipleship is obeying Jesus Christ and learning of Him and following Him and doing what He tells you to do, keeping His commandments and carrying out His will.

That kind of a person is a Christian—and no other kind is!

God Has the Answers

LORD, make me to know… the measure of my days… that I may know how frail I am. PSALM 39:4

We can all learn something from David’s prayer—for none of us has all of the answers! David had come through the trying experiences of life and was now unsure about the things he once thought he knew. In the autumn of his life, I think David was a more relaxed man and more dependent on the divine answers. I found a lesson in this for myself and I pass it on.

Some time ago I preached for a week in Rochester, New York. At the conclusion and before the benediction, the chairman of the congregation told the audience: “We have enough time for questions. The preacher will answer any questions you have.”

This was news to me, so I got up and said: “Mr. Chairman, you are twenty-five years too late! Twenty-five years ago I could have answered questions on almost any subject, but now I beg to be excused!”

In our Christian life and experience, it is a blessed thing to find out that we do not have to know everything after all!

Lord, instead of getting simpler, life seems to get more complex year after year. I need Your divine help to sort out the confusion, Lord. Thank You that I can trust in You—always.